You say Police State, I say potato. Either way let's discuss surveillance and government overreach.

DanB wrote:

Social networks are not public spaces. They are private spaces wholly owned by private corporations. I have no problem with cops acting on things the hear in actual public spaces like public parks or on sidewalks. If cops took to hanging around in the foyer of most office blocks hoping to overhear what customers and staff were saying you'd expect most businesses to object.

Maybe I'm just dense but please explain to me what is private about "tweet".

Oh, and in order for something to be a "thought crime" you need to be able to get in trouble for thinking it, not for doing it. If I think, for instance, that I could put together a libelous campaign that would incite folks to riot in the streets, endanger lives, and cause countless dollars worth of property damage, I am pretty certain I can't get in trouble for it even in today's "police state" America. If, on the other hand, I actually do say things that incite crazy gun toting nutbars to shoot abortion doctors, I, um, probably wouldn't get in trouble either.

So. No police state.

Paleocon wrote:
DanB wrote:
Paleocon wrote:

So, when a cop takes on the task of community policing by asking local shop owners, football coaches, and pastors what they might have heard around the neighborhood about the string of folks stealing packages from people's front doors during the day, that's evidence of a police state? How is that terribly different from monitoring Facebook accounts to see if folks are bragging about tagging the local gas station or "jumping in" some 14 year old into their dickless gang?

A couple of recognised cops going door to door in their patrol neighbourhood isn't even remotely analagous to the FBI hoovering up every "public" facebook status and scanning it against a blacklist of phrases. Would you be happy if the FBI opened every piece of mail and did the same?

Anyone who honestly thinks that posting something on Facebook gives them an expectation of privacy is either the Most Naive Person in the World(tm) or has been hitting the restricted pharmaceuticals a bit too hard. Heck, the freaking EULA for Facebook gives them the right to sell your mined information to marketers for gods' sakes -- and that includes your GPS position. Show me how that is analogous to the FBI opening your mail. I dare you.

The network is private but what is made available isn't secret I understand that.

The reasonable expectation I have is that in a Free Democracy the state isn't keeping me (and everyone else) under 24/7 surveillance on the off chance that I might think of committing a crime. I have absolutely no problem with the police using it as a surveillance tool for those who are already under investigation or known to be crime risks, such as the gangs example given above.

DanB wrote:
Paleocon wrote:
DanB wrote:
Paleocon wrote:

So, when a cop takes on the task of community policing by asking local shop owners, football coaches, and pastors what they might have heard around the neighborhood about the string of folks stealing packages from people's front doors during the day, that's evidence of a police state? How is that terribly different from monitoring Facebook accounts to see if folks are bragging about tagging the local gas station or "jumping in" some 14 year old into their dickless gang?

A couple of recognised cops going door to door in their patrol neighbourhood isn't even remotely analagous to the FBI hoovering up every "public" facebook status and scanning it against a blacklist of phrases. Would you be happy if the FBI opened every piece of mail and did the same?

Anyone who honestly thinks that posting something on Facebook gives them an expectation of privacy is either the Most Naive Person in the World(tm) or has been hitting the restricted pharmaceuticals a bit too hard. Heck, the freaking EULA for Facebook gives them the right to sell your mined information to marketers for gods' sakes -- and that includes your GPS position. Show me how that is analogous to the FBI opening your mail. I dare you.

The network is private but what is made available isn't secret I understand that.

The reasonable expectation I have is that in a Free Democracy the state isn't keeping me (and everyone else) under 24/7 surveillance on the off chance that I might think of committing a crime. I have absolutely no problem with the police using it as a surveillance tool for those who are already under investigation or known to be crime risks, such as the gangs example given above.

In the District of Columbia, the US Park Police in cooperation with the DC Metropolitan Police Force have installed "gunshot detectors" all over the city. This allows them to triangulate the approximate location of a discharged firearm to within about 20 feet. With this information, they are able to (at least in theory) respond to a violent crime in progress and/or collect information about the crime at the scene in the critical time immediately following a crime being committed.

This, it would seem, would qualify as an unwarranted 24/7 surveillance of the population on the "off chance" that there might be a crime committed. That said, I think you would find it very hard to find more than a few handfuls of nutbar libertarians who would characterize this as inconsistent with the conduct of law enforcement in a Free Democracy.

Paleocon wrote:

So. No police state.

For a country that isn't a police state you have the highest per capita prison population in the world. And your conviction and incarceration rates for federal crimes (just shy of 90%) is about the same as for crimes investigated by the Stasi. You just slipped 27 places in the Press Freedom Index. If you're not a police state yet the direction you're headed does not look good.

e2a: I just find it weird when people accept blanket surveillance. "He who would trade liberty for some temporary security, deserves neither liberty nor security" and all that.

DanB wrote:

For a country that isn't a police state you have the highest per capita prison population in the world. And your conviction and incarceration rates for federal crimes (just shy of 905) is about the same as for crimes investigated by the Stasi. You just slipped 27 places in the Press Freedom Index. If you're not a police state yet the direction you're headed does not look good.

It's implied that in a police state that you don't get a fair trial, and that what distinguishes it from other forms of government is making political dissent a crime. We don't have that here. Our criminal justice system involves a huge number of protections that are not available in a police state, and we offer a high level of freedom of speech. Yes, we have a high incarceration rate, but that's because of our idiotic drug policies. Our problem is that at some point more than 50% of our population agreed that smoking weed and snorting cocaine was criminal. This was a decision that was made democratically. Again, not really the mark of a police state, where decisions flow from the top down.

Paleocon wrote:
DanB wrote:
Paleocon wrote:
DanB wrote:
Paleocon wrote:

So, when a cop takes on the task of community policing by asking local shop owners, football coaches, and pastors what they might have heard around the neighborhood about the string of folks stealing packages from people's front doors during the day, that's evidence of a police state? How is that terribly different from monitoring Facebook accounts to see if folks are bragging about tagging the local gas station or "jumping in" some 14 year old into their dickless gang?

A couple of recognised cops going door to door in their patrol neighbourhood isn't even remotely analagous to the FBI hoovering up every "public" facebook status and scanning it against a blacklist of phrases. Would you be happy if the FBI opened every piece of mail and did the same?

Anyone who honestly thinks that posting something on Facebook gives them an expectation of privacy is either the Most Naive Person in the World(tm) or has been hitting the restricted pharmaceuticals a bit too hard. Heck, the freaking EULA for Facebook gives them the right to sell your mined information to marketers for gods' sakes -- and that includes your GPS position. Show me how that is analogous to the FBI opening your mail. I dare you.

The network is private but what is made available isn't secret I understand that.

The reasonable expectation I have is that in a Free Democracy the state isn't keeping me (and everyone else) under 24/7 surveillance on the off chance that I might think of committing a crime. I have absolutely no problem with the police using it as a surveillance tool for those who are already under investigation or known to be crime risks, such as the gangs example given above.

In the District of Columbia, the US Park Police in cooperation with the DC Metropolitan Police Force have installed "gunshot detectors" all over the city. This allows them to triangulate the approximate location of a discharged firearm to within about 20 feet. With this information, they are able to (at least in theory) respond to a violent crime in progress and/or collect information about the crime at the scene in the critical time immediately following a crime being committed.

This, it would seem, would qualify as an unwarranted 24/7 surveillance of the population on the "off chance" that there might be a crime committed. That said, I think you would find it very hard to find more than a few handfuls of nutbar libertarians who would characterize this as inconsistent with the conduct of law enforcement in a Free Democracy.

From what little info I could gather gunshot detectors cover 16 of the the city's 68 square miles
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...
I'm guessing those are the 16 square miles where there is elevated risk of gun crime. As I say, surveillance where there is already known prior risk seems fine. Blanket surveillance just in case, not really.

DanB wrote:
Paleocon wrote:
DanB wrote:
Paleocon wrote:
DanB wrote:
Paleocon wrote:

So, when a cop takes on the task of community policing by asking local shop owners, football coaches, and pastors what they might have heard around the neighborhood about the string of folks stealing packages from people's front doors during the day, that's evidence of a police state? How is that terribly different from monitoring Facebook accounts to see if folks are bragging about tagging the local gas station or "jumping in" some 14 year old into their dickless gang?

A couple of recognised cops going door to door in their patrol neighbourhood isn't even remotely analagous to the FBI hoovering up every "public" facebook status and scanning it against a blacklist of phrases. Would you be happy if the FBI opened every piece of mail and did the same?

Anyone who honestly thinks that posting something on Facebook gives them an expectation of privacy is either the Most Naive Person in the World(tm) or has been hitting the restricted pharmaceuticals a bit too hard. Heck, the freaking EULA for Facebook gives them the right to sell your mined information to marketers for gods' sakes -- and that includes your GPS position. Show me how that is analogous to the FBI opening your mail. I dare you.

The network is private but what is made available isn't secret I understand that.

The reasonable expectation I have is that in a Free Democracy the state isn't keeping me (and everyone else) under 24/7 surveillance on the off chance that I might think of committing a crime. I have absolutely no problem with the police using it as a surveillance tool for those who are already under investigation or known to be crime risks, such as the gangs example given above.

In the District of Columbia, the US Park Police in cooperation with the DC Metropolitan Police Force have installed "gunshot detectors" all over the city. This allows them to triangulate the approximate location of a discharged firearm to within about 20 feet. With this information, they are able to (at least in theory) respond to a violent crime in progress and/or collect information about the crime at the scene in the critical time immediately following a crime being committed.

This, it would seem, would qualify as an unwarranted 24/7 surveillance of the population on the "off chance" that there might be a crime committed. That said, I think you would find it very hard to find more than a few handfuls of nutbar libertarians who would characterize this as inconsistent with the conduct of law enforcement in a Free Democracy.

From what little info I could gather gunshot detectors cover 16 of the the city's 68 square miles
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...
I'm guessing those are the 16 square miles where there is elevated risk of gun crime. As I say, surveillance where there is already known prior risk seems fine. Blanket surveillance just in case, not really.

68 square miles is the entirety of the District of Columbia. Well, all but .3 square miles of it.

The 16 square miles covered is mostly around the areas of US Park Police land. Not entirely high crime area. Mostly a case of jurisdictional coverage.

Paleocon wrote:

Oh, and in order for something to be a "thought crime" you need to be able to get in trouble for thinking it, not for doing it. If I think, for instance, that I could put together a libelous campaign that would incite folks to riot in the streets, endanger lives, and cause countless dollars worth of property damage, I am pretty certain I can't get in trouble for it even in today's "police state" America. If, on the other hand, I actually do say things that incite crazy gun toting nutbars to shoot abortion doctors, I, um, probably wouldn't get in trouble either.

So. No police state.

Just to be clear. This isn't that thread. There was a thread already taken over by people who think this isn't a police state. That thread's over here.

http://www.gamerswithjobs.com/node/110165?page=21

I specifically posted this not because I wanted to debate whether this was good or bad, but because I wanted to talk about what one should do if they are afraid of being arrested for essentially, as Minarchist said, "Thoughtcrime".

I'm not going to debate that here. If you want to take that debate to the already derailed thread, please feel free. This thread is the safe haven for those of us who are worried about this to talk about what measures to take are reasonable.

Deleted

DSGamer wrote:
Paleocon wrote:

Oh, and in order for something to be a "thought crime" you need to be able to get in trouble for thinking it, not for doing it. If I think, for instance, that I could put together a libelous campaign that would incite folks to riot in the streets, endanger lives, and cause countless dollars worth of property damage, I am pretty certain I can't get in trouble for it even in today's "police state" America. If, on the other hand, I actually do say things that incite crazy gun toting nutbars to shoot abortion doctors, I, um, probably wouldn't get in trouble either.

So. No police state.

Just to be clear. This isn't that thread. There was a thread already taken over by people who think this isn't a police state. That thread's over here.

http://www.gamerswithjobs.com/node/110165?page=21

I specifically posted this not because I wanted to debate whether this was good or bad, but because I wanted to talk about what one should do if they are afraid of being arrested for essentially, as Minarchist said, "Thoughtcrime".

I'm not going to debate that here. If you want to take that debate to the already derailed thread, please feel free. This thread is the safe haven for those of us who are worried about this to talk about what measures to take are reasonable.

Okay.

Well, if you're truly concerned with being arrested for "thoughtcrime", there are a whole scad of organizations that are tremendously helpful when it comes to that. Many have been excoriated as "too liberal", but they still manage to do pretty good work.

Here is a partial list:

The American Civil Liberties Union
The Electronic Frontier Foundation
Amnesty International

Paleocon. I'm 100% serious when I say that I don't believe every single thread should question the premise of the thread. If I create a thread specifically for the sake of talking about something and ask that the premise not be debated in two separate places, I would hope people would respect that. As such I am happy to answer your questions, but in the other thread. The one that's already OT.

http://www.gamerswithjobs.com/node/110165?page=21

DSGamer wrote:

Paleocon. I'm 100% serious when I say that I don't believe every single thread should question the premise of the thread. If I create a thread specifically for the sake of talking about something and ask that the premise not be debated in two separate places, I would hope people would respect that. As such I am happy to answer your questions, but in the other thread. The one that's already OT.

http://www.gamerswithjobs.com/node/110165?page=21

And I thought I was being serious.

My point is that if you feel that a particular encounter with your government has you feeling like you live in a police state, the best course of action (at least in this citizen's opinion) is to try to retard that development by supporting and enlisting the help of organizations that work to protect your liberties. Even folks without means have the ability to state their case to the ACLU. Many do. Many win.

What I am saying is that the remedy isn't to put on a tin foil hat, yank out your landline, grab a bunch of guns, and live in a Unabomber cabin someplace in Anusbang, MT. That's just plain stupid. There are organizations that exist to help and they generally do a pretty good job.

Nevermind. Wrong thread.

Paleocon wrote:
DSGamer wrote:

Paleocon. I'm 100% serious when I say that I don't believe every single thread should question the premise of the thread. If I create a thread specifically for the sake of talking about something and ask that the premise not be debated in two separate places, I would hope people would respect that. As such I am happy to answer your questions, but in the other thread. The one that's already OT.

http://www.gamerswithjobs.com/node/110165?page=21

And I thought I was being serious.

My point is that if you feel that a particular encounter with your government has you feeling like you live in a police state, the best course of action (at least in this citizen's opinion) is to try to retard that development by supporting and enlisting the help of organizations that work to protect your liberties. Even folks without means have the ability to state their case to the ACLU. Many do. Many win.

What I am saying is that the remedy isn't to put on a tin foil hat, yank out your landline, grab a bunch of guns, and live in a Unabomber cabin someplace in Anusbang, MT. That's just plain stupid. There are organizations that exist to help and they generally do a pretty good job.

Don't you understand, though, that as soon as you say something like that you completely undercut your point? How can I take you seriously if you think that you're either sane or a gun-toting, tin-foil hat wearing Unabomber? Seriously. That isn't helpful.

I didn't post that originally to ask if I should rip out my landline and use morse code. I posted that because I wanted to discuss what those of us who are concerned about government monitoring should do. I am a professional. I live in the real world. I talk to friends and family online. I'm not going off the grid. I wouldn't go off the grid unless things got really really really bad. But I think it's reasonable to ask, if you think things have gotten worse, what to do?

gregrampage wrote:

I haven't read the article but how are the monitoring the social networks? Are they reading private messages and posts they theoretically shouldn't have access to? Or are they just reading things that people posted that anyone can read?

This particular article is only regarding public posts. But as you may already know Facebook is talking about making posts searchable unless you specifically lock them down. Google is talking about aggregating their internal search across GMail, Google+, etc. And we already know the government has engaged in illegal warrantless surveillance. This particular article was interesting to me because it wasn't a news report, but the FBI out and out saying "hey, we're going to monitor social networks". That moves it beyond something a reporter says into the FBI creating profiles of people based on what they say online.

DSGamer wrote:
gregrampage wrote:

I haven't read the article but how are the monitoring the social networks? Are they reading private messages and posts they theoretically shouldn't have access to? Or are they just reading things that people posted that anyone can read?

This particular article is only regarding public posts. But as you may already know Facebook is talking about making posts searchable unless you specifically lock them down. Google is talking about aggregating their internal search across GMail, Google+, etc. And we already know the government has engaged in illegal warrantless surveillance. This particular article was interesting to me because it wasn't a news report, but the FBI out and out saying "hey, we're going to monitor social networks". That moves it beyond something a reporter says into the FBI creating profiles of people based on what they say online.

That's absolutely a valid discussion. I was asking because some more extreme comparisons like thoughtcrime and reading your mail were made and it didn't sound to me that they were apt at all. I ended up deleting the post because this isn't the right thread for that, but I appreciate your response. But while on the topic, I guess, I understand the desire to not have to constantly defend the police state concept, but it can get awkward when extreme comparisons/suggestions are made without a lot of merit. It's a fine line..

gregrampage wrote:
DSGamer wrote:
gregrampage wrote:

I haven't read the article but how are the monitoring the social networks? Are they reading private messages and posts they theoretically shouldn't have access to? Or are they just reading things that people posted that anyone can read?

This particular article is only regarding public posts. But as you may already know Facebook is talking about making posts searchable unless you specifically lock them down. Google is talking about aggregating their internal search across GMail, Google+, etc. And we already know the government has engaged in illegal warrantless surveillance. This particular article was interesting to me because it wasn't a news report, but the FBI out and out saying "hey, we're going to monitor social networks". That moves it beyond something a reporter says into the FBI creating profiles of people based on what they say online.

That's absolutely a valid discussion. I was asking because some more extreme comparisons like thoughtcrime and reading your mail were made and it didn't sound to me that they were apt at all. I ended up deleting the post because this isn't the right thread for that, but I appreciate your response. But while on the topic, I guess, I understand the desire to not have to constantly defend the police state concept, but it can get awkward when extreme comparisons/suggestions are made without a lot of merit. It's a fine line..

I understand it can be awkward, but that's why a separate thread was created. If you think we're loons, let us have our own thread to be loony in.

When I created this thread I had hoped that this thread could be about what measures to take if you were worried about the direction of government surveillance. Even within that context there are varying opinions as to what's reasonable and what's excessive in terms of worry or caution. I would actually be shocked if the government *didn't* aggregate social networking data. So for me this is just a reminder that I need to consider alternatives to GMail, is it bad to have a Flickr account, things like that.

Once again, I'm very much on the side of "this is the way the world is and until I find a better place to live I'm going to try and live within the system." So I'm not building a Megaupload-style panic room or canceling my Internet connection. I'm just thinking more about what services I should get off entirely, what services I should switch, etc.

Well that's the thing, I don't think you're loony. I agree the majority of the time. That's why it can get awkward because I don't want to just leave it alone. I guess if I thought it was all tin foil it would be easier to just let it be.

Are there any worthwhile alternatives to gmail?

gregrampage wrote:

Well that's the thing, I don't think you're loony. I agree the majority of the time. That's why it can get awkward because I don't want to just leave it alone. I guess if I thought it was all tin foil it would be easier to just let it be.

Are there any worthwhile alternatives to gmail?

I don't know. I'm working on that. Currently I'm looking at Neomailbox. Their claim to fame being that they are overseas, based in Switzerland and don't allow illegal monitoring. This has become a business because of recent events in the last 10 years. The problem is finding a service that provides you with what GMail does. Currently my wife and I can share a calendar, I can use GMail for contacts. It's absurdly handy. I would pay good money for a GMail-alike that was simply private and didn't data mine me.

Minarchist wrote:

Hmmm....not good.

His crime? Being black in South Orange County.

Minarchist wrote:

Hmmm....not good.

This might actually be more appropriate in the non lethal force thread, given the direction that thread went.

yeah, we have 3-4 threads like this rotating right now, so I just threw it somewhere.

Minarchist wrote:

yeah, we have 3-4 threads like this rotating right now, so I just threw it somewhere. :)

I didn't mean it as a criticism so much as a suggestion to cross post it.

DSGamer wrote:

http://www.newscientist.com/blogs/onepercent/2012/01/fbi-releases-plans-to-monitor.html

This isn't a shocker, but the government is planning to monitor (only publicly they say) all social networks. The eye of the government is firmly trained on its own citizens. Not sure why I keep accounts on social networks at this point.

So, to keep the thread railed, the question posed in the thread title is what do you do about this?

I would posit that you do nothing more than what you ordinarily ought to do when using a social networks. Think before posting. Same thing I do before I open my mouth in a coffee shop.

In fact, scratch that, same thing I do before I open my mouth or type anything ever.

Honestly, I have my family on FB - I'm more worried about them finding out things about me than I am the cops.

Jonman wrote:
DSGamer wrote:

http://www.newscientist.com/blogs/onepercent/2012/01/fbi-releases-plans-to-monitor.html

This isn't a shocker, but the government is planning to monitor (only publicly they say) all social networks. The eye of the government is firmly trained on its own citizens. Not sure why I keep accounts on social networks at this point.

So, to keep the thread railed, the question posed in the thread title is what do you do about this?

I would posit that you do nothing more than what you ordinarily ought to do when using a social networks. Think before posting. Same thing I do before I open my mouth in a coffee shop.

In fact, scratch that, same thing I do before I open my mouth or type anything ever.

Honestly, I have my family on FB - I'm more worried about them finding out things about me than I am the cops.

And for God's sake, don't post about "blowing up the competition" if you have brown skin.

Slightly off-topic, but wouldn't anyone like to live of the grid anyway? 'Somehow' secure yourself food and water and have access to medical help, but apart from that just go and be a hermit in a forest somewhere.

Bill will allow 30,000 drones in American skies

A bill passed last week allocating more than $63 billion to the Federal Aviation Administration would increase the existence of drones in civilian airspace across America and is expected to be signed into law by President Barack Obama.
KrazyTacoFO wrote:

Bill will allow 30,000 drones in American skies

A bill passed last week allocating more than $63 billion to the Federal Aviation Administration would increase the existence of drones in civilian airspace across America and is expected to be signed into law by President Barack Obama.

Not quite. The bill requires the FAA to figure out how to integrate UAVs into the existing airspace as well as establish standards for pilot training and how and when they can be used.

Also, the bill won't "allow 30,000 drones in American skies." That figure is how many drones the FAA expects to be in the skies by 2020 because of all the demand for their use (yes, there's a tremendous amount of innocent commercial, non-police state demand for drones). I'd much rather have the FAA figure out how drones need to safely fit in our airspace than wait around with their thumbs up their ass until some idiot crashes one into a passenger jet on accident because there weren't any established rules for their use.

OG_slinger wrote:
KrazyTacoFO wrote:

Bill will allow 30,000 drones in American skies

A bill passed last week allocating more than $63 billion to the Federal Aviation Administration would increase the existence of drones in civilian airspace across America and is expected to be signed into law by President Barack Obama.

Not quite. The bill requires the FAA to figure out how to integrate UAVs into the existing airspace as well as establish standards for pilot training and how and when they can be used.

Also, the bill won't "allow 30,000 drones in American skies." That figure is how many drones the FAA expects to be in the skies by 2020 because of all the demand for their use (yes, there's a tremendous amount of innocent commercial, non-police state demand for drones). I'd much rather have the FAA figure out how drones need to safely fit in our airspace than wait around with their thumbs up their ass until some idiot crashes one into a passenger jet on accident because there weren't any established rules for their use.

Yeah, I know that the NOAA uses them and probably other environmental agencies would probably be using them as well. I copied and pasted the link, but I actually don't care if we have 150,000 drones (I also personally don't really care if the police are watching me 24 hrs a day).