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  1. Misthiocracy got drunk and Member
    Misthiocracy got drunk and Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Like.

    • #1
    • March 3, 2015, at 3:23 PM PST
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  2. DocJay Inactive

    I prefer only the government to have such power. I trust them. Vote Bush.

    • #2
    • March 3, 2015, at 3:38 PM PST
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  3. DocJay Inactive

    Can you add the word fairness to your law. Fairness is a nice word to have in a law.

    • #3
    • March 3, 2015, at 3:39 PM PST
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  4. Profile Photo Member

    Eminently sensible, John!

    • #4
    • March 3, 2015, at 3:44 PM PST
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  5. Matt Balzer, Imperialist Claw Member

    Who could possibly oppose “neutrality”?

    This man.

    “With enemies, you know where they stand. But with neutrals, who can say? It sickens me.” – 25-Star General Zapp Brannigan.

    • #5
    • March 3, 2015, at 3:47 PM PST
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  6. Jimmy Carter Member
    Jimmy Carter Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    John Walker: that this is a power grab which opens the door to the kind of top-down regulation of content which the FCC imposed (and to some extent still does) on broadcasters.

    The web will be reduced to tin cans and string so quick We’ll be begging for dial-up.

    • #6
    • March 3, 2015, at 4:08 PM PST
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  7. Arahant Member

    Love the idea, John. It’s all in the marketing.

    • #7
    • March 3, 2015, at 4:23 PM PST
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  8. Percival Thatcher
    Percival Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    We could set up an on-line casino, taking bets on which government agency spends the most per capita time watching porn while on the job.

    This could be a gold mine!

    • #8
    • March 3, 2015, at 8:27 PM PST
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  9. KC Mulville Inactive

    One thing to consider here. The metadata are being collected anyway, by the phone and internet providers. The NSA doesn’t collect it. The unique difference in this program is that the NSA requires that the providers don’t erase the data as they normally would.

    That having been said, recall that the government agencies still need a warrant to examine the data.

    I’ll accept your suggestion about the public examination of phone and internet records if you also require that members of the public obtain a warrant first.

    • #9
    • March 4, 2015, at 9:22 AM PST
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  10. Kristian Stout Inactive

    John,

    This idea is appealing, but as KC noted, there would definitely be implementation issues. Perhaps pitch this as a sunshine law and limit the metadata sharing to only officially granted phones and email accounts. Even better, lets be able to track web history of the computers in government offices. Can you imagine the heat maps that would emerge from studies on that? Talk about big data.

    • #10
    • March 4, 2015, at 10:07 AM PST
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  11. Arahant Member

    Kristian Stout: Perhaps pitch this as a sunshine law and limit the metadata sharing to only officially granted phones and email accounts.

    And in the case of a Hillary Clinton who used personal e-mail instead? Do we know she wasn’t dialing people from home or receiving calls at home or on a private cell phone?

    • #11
    • March 4, 2015, at 10:11 AM PST
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  12. Arahant Member

    I think you lose a certain amount of privacy upon entering public service. That is as it should be. Your income should be scrutinized. Your dealings should be scrutinized. Was it the Doge of Venice or of Genoa who was carefully watched all the time to ensure no undue influence was exerted?

    • #12
    • March 4, 2015, at 10:14 AM PST
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  13. Rob Long Founder

    What I love about this is the simplicity — and the eminent fairness — of the proposal. And how easy it would be to explain.

    • #13
    • March 4, 2015, at 10:17 AM PST
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  14. John Walker Contributor
    John Walker

    KC Mulville:One thing to consider here. The metadata are being collected anyway, by the phone and internet providers. The NSA doesn’t collect it. The unique difference in this program is that the NSA requires that the providers don’t erase the data as they normally would.

    That having been said, recall that the government agencies still need a warrant to examine the data.

    Is this the case? Where has it been claimed that a warrant is required to examine the collected and archived metadata?

    In litigation over these programmes (for example, United States v. Davis), government lawyers have cited the 1979 decision in Smith v. Maryland that the installation of a “pen recorder” on a telephone line (a device which records numbers one calls and is called by—metadata of the electromechanical age) does not constitute a search under the Fourth Amendment and does not require a warrant. According to this precedent, neither collecting the data nor using it requires a warrant.

    The implication would be that there’s no legal difference in collecting data for one person and collecting everybody’s data, just a question of technological capability to do so. Under Smith v. Maryland no probable cause is required to collect and examine the data. The argument is that by making the call, you are disclosing your telephone number and the number you called to a third party (the telephone company), and that therefore you have no reasonable expectation of privacy.

    Are you aware of a claim that collected metadata can only be examined pursuant to a warrant? If so, that would defeat most of the data mining rationale for collecting it in the first place.

    • #14
    • March 4, 2015, at 11:08 AM PST
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  15. donald todd Inactive

    Given that we are told that a lot of useless government employees fill their work hours with finding pornography on the internet, making that information public with the names of the employees would be real useful. If they are spending most of their day looking at the sweet or not-so-sweet bodies, we should not be paying for their pleasure.

    • #15
    • March 4, 2015, at 11:51 AM PST
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  16. Kristian Stout Inactive

    John Walker:

    KC Mulville:One thing to consider here. The metadata are being collected anyway, by the phone and internet providers. The NSA doesn’t collect it. The unique difference in this program is that the NSA requires that the providers don’t erase the data as they normally would.

    That having been said, recall that the government agencies still need a warrant to examine the data.

    Is this the case? Where has it been claimed that a warrant is required to examine the collected and archived metadata?

    In litigation over these programmes (for example, United States v. Davis), government lawyers have cited the 1979 decision in Smith v. Maryland that the installation of a “pen recorder” on a telephone line (a device which records numbers one calls and is called by—metadata of the electromechanical age) does not constitute a search under the Fourth Amendment and does not require a warrant. According to this precedent, neither collecting the data nor using it requires a warrant.

    The implication would be that there’s no legal difference in collecting data for one person and collecting everybody’s data, just a question of technological capability to do so. Under Smith v. Maryland no probable cause is required to collect and examine the data. The argument is that by making the call, you are disclosing your telephone number and the number you called to a third party (the telephone company), and that therefore you have no reasonable expectation of privacy.

    Are you aware of a claim that collected metadata can only be examined pursuant to a warrant? If so, that would defeat most of the data mining rationale for collecting it in the first place.

    Under the Stored Communications Act, I believe that metadata is not protected. It can be accessed with a mere subpoena. With that said, do we know the extent to which the government relies upon data collected by service providers and the extent to which it collects its own data? There is at least a logical hurdle to be overcome if they rely extensively on data collected by third parties that would put a wrinkle in this proposal. That extra step in acquiring the meta data would provide room for an argument of “since we don’t actively collect the data ourselves, but merely subpoena it from third parties, we wouldn’t be required to show reciprocity.”

    Its been a while since I read up on the different NSA programs. I know some were direct filtering schemes on internet hubs, some were more like hacking into insecure communications networks, and some were covert subpoenas of content providers.

    • #16
    • March 4, 2015, at 11:57 AM PST
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  17. JimGoneWild Coolidge

    John–Meta Data is available to the public: For purchase. The meta data, i.e. call billing records, are property of the phone companies. They like to sell it. You can get download subscriptions or even in CD format.

    • #17
    • March 4, 2015, at 1:22 PM PST
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  18. Z in MT Member

    I think technically this government metadata is already collected available through Federal Records Act and the Freedom of Information Act. The Institute of Justice has become a menace on the administration because the know how to file and win FOIA requests. What you are saying – fully open and searchable – would be a change.

    On the other side, while both the Bush and Obama administrations have asserted that no warrant is needed to collect the metadata, I do think the programs have been setup so that a FISA court warrant is needed to specifically query the database against a US citizen. Now they are always searching the metadata for connections with known foreign terrorists, the gray area right now is how many degrees of separations can they dig before they need to get a warrant from the FISA court. I think I saw Gen. Hayden on 60 minutes or something discussing that right now they are allowed to go 2 or 3 degrees of separation deep. i.e. Jihadi John called his barber in London, who called his cousin in Detroit, who called Stanford Admissions Office, who Peter Robinson called to find out if his son was accepted.

    • #18
    • March 4, 2015, at 1:30 PM PST
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  19. John Walker Contributor
    John Walker

    Here is a useful timeline of events and disclosures regarding NSA domestic surveillance from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF). Items in this table can be expanded, and contain links to original source documents.

    Obviously, the EFF has their own spin on these matters, and is an advocate for individual privacy.

    • #19
    • March 4, 2015, at 1:40 PM PST
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  20. KC Mulville Inactive

    Z in MT:On the other side, while both the Bush and Obama administrations have asserted that no warrant is needed to collect the metadata, I do think the programs have been setup so that a FISA court warrant is needed to specifically query the database against a US citizen.

    This is my understanding as well. As soon as you get personal, you need a warrant.

    • #20
    • March 4, 2015, at 3:26 PM PST
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  21. John Walker Contributor
    John Walker

    KC Mulville:

    Z in MT:On the other side, while both the Bush and Obama administrations have asserted that no warrant is needed to collect the metadata, I do think the programs have been setup so that a FISA court warrant is needed to specifically query the database against a US citizen.

    This is my understanding as well. As soon as you get personal, you need a warrant.

    If the data are collected, there is the potential for abuse.

    In April 2014, two Senators claimed the NSA was exploiting a loophole in section 702 of FISA to access collected data on communications by U.S. citizens without a warrant.

    • #21
    • March 4, 2015, at 3:42 PM PST
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  22. Tuck Inactive

    John Walker: …and is an advocate for individual privacy.

    So they’re with the terrorists? Shame on them.

    • #22
    • March 4, 2015, at 4:20 PM PST
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  23. Hank Rhody, Badgeless Bandito Contributor

    Interesting idea. If I understand the law correctly any metadata handed over to a third party is public, right? As in you no longer have any reasonable expectation of privacy. So what’s to stop us from doing exactly this right now?

    Other than not having any leverage over giant telecom companies…

    • #23
    • March 5, 2015, at 5:55 AM PST
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  24. KC Mulville Inactive

    John Walker:

    If the data are collected, there is the potential for abuse.

    In April 2014, two Senators claimed the NSA was exploiting a loophole in section 702 of FISA to access collected data on communications by U.S. citizens without a warrant.

    Yes, but let’s make sure we make distinctions. The fact that there may be loopholes being exploited does not prove that the whole law was designed for nefarious purposes. After all, tax law is exploited all the time, but that doesn’t “prove” that taxes are evil; like any other law, experience reveals where adjustments need to be made.

    As it stands right now, your internet service provider is keeping track of your internet usage by identifying your IP and where you are sending data. In fact, the moment I press the “Post Comment” button on this very comment, Comcast will record my IP and Ricochet’s IP as part of the call record. That call record will be kept on file by Comcast for a certain period of time.

    If they have a warrant, the government can force Comcast to divulge this record – this afternoon, if necessary. The key is the warrant, not the presence of the call record. The distinction is between the warrant and call record.

    The fact that people might evade the warrant, by itself, doesn’t prove that collecting the call record is inappropriate. The remedy is not to throw away the call record, but to tighten the use of warrants and higher penalties for trying to evade the warrant.

    • #24
    • March 5, 2015, at 7:08 AM PST
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  25. Owen Findy Member

    Vive la réciprocité!

    • #25
    • March 5, 2015, at 12:47 PM PST
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  26. Owen Findy Member

    Liberté, pâtisserie, réciprocité!

    Wait.

    Liberté, électricité, réciprocité!

    • #26
    • March 5, 2015, at 12:51 PM PST
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