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Technician
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US government invokes special privilege to stop scrutiny of data mining

The Obama administration is invoking an obscure legal privilege to avoid judicial scrutiny of its secret collection of the communications of potentially millions of Americans.

Civil liberties lawyers trying to hold the administration to account through the courts for its surveillance of phone calls and emails of American citizens have been repeatedly stymied by the government's recourse to the "military and state secrets privilege". The precedent, rarely used but devastating in its legal impact, allows the government to claim that it cannot be submitted to judicial oversight because to do so it would have to compromise national security.

The government has cited the privilege in two active lawsuits being heard by a federal court in the northern district of California Virginia v Barack Obama et al, and Carolyn Jewel v the National Security Agency. In both cases, the Obama administration has called for the cases to be dismissed on the grounds that the government's secret activities must remain secret.

The claim comes amid a billowing furore over US surveillance on the mass communications of Americans following disclosures by the Guardian of a massive NSA monitoring programme of Verizon phone records and internet communications.

The director of national intelligence, James Clapper, has written in court filings that "after careful and actual personal consideration of the matter, based upon my own knowledge and information obtained in the course of my official duties, I have determined that the disclosure of certain information would cause exceptionally grave damage to the national security of the United States. Thus, as to this information, I formally assert the state secrets privilege."

The use of the privilege has been personally approved by President Obama and several of the administration's most senior officials: in addition to Clapper, they include the director of the NSA Keith Alexander and Eric Holder, the attorney general. "The attorney general has personally reviewed and approved the government's privilege assertion in these cases," legal documents state.

They knew to cover their asses.

Old Post 06-08-13 19:41 #
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Kontra Kommando
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Maes said:

The only usefulness of such systems is in the aftermath of some event, e.g. a prominent act of terrorism or a gang "hit", hoping to catch e.g. the perpetrator bragging about it (not unheard of). But in that case, the authorities already have a pretty good idea about where, what and who to look for and are just waiting for the right mix of signals to appear, they don't just go blindly sifting through millions of messages for out-of-context keywords like a CS freshman's text search function.



I'm pretty sure this is the case, because if not, half of the U.S. would be in prison for all sorts of crimes. But I wonder if they do also research what people are doing. Perhaps that's why there's been such a recent political wave of marijuana law reform.

Old Post 06-08-13 20:44 #
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188DarkRevived
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Only one thing would make me sad, though... And that would be if all of the lovely conspiracy-theory videos get censored out of YouTube. I love those things, and some of them actually sound so damn convincing!
If the US government censors them out then it would only be definite proof of the suspicions that the population is being lied to by the authorities.
Therefore, if the authorities really want to keep us cluelessly guessing things then they should not censor the conspiracy-theory videos. :p

Old Post 06-09-13 00:35 #
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GreyGhost
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hex11 said:
Not if it's in Russia, Iran, China, etc. Hell, China can easily make their own custom hardware for critical systems, and keep all of it for themselves. They have all the fab plants! US feds can't fuck with them.
If the hardware and software is all their own work, they should be reasonably secure. It's the hacked and reverse engineered stuff they've "borrowed" from elsewhere that's likely to be their undoing.


188DarkRevived said:
definite proof of the suspicions that the population is being lied to by the authorities.
When DON'T the authorities lie to us? If not for the occasional whistleblower we'd just be a bunch of happy little mushrooms - being kept in the dark and fed shit.

Old Post 06-09-13 03:58 #
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fraggle
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The whistleblower behind the leaks has been revelaed as a CIA analyst, here's an interview with him.

Old Post 06-09-13 22:08 #
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188DarkRevived
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GreyGhost said:
When DON'T the authorities lie to us?

Hard to answer, really. It would've been nice if we could actually read their minds when staring at them through our screens, instead of being limited to just hearing their words and forming speculations about them.
Perhaps the only times when they don't lie to us are during broadcasts of holiday festivities or some major sporting events. *shrugs*


If not for the occasional whistleblower we'd just be a bunch of happy little mushrooms - being kept in the dark and fed shit.

It's sad how sometimes they can catch a whistleblower ahead of time and devise a clever scheme with the goal of framing him/her as a public enemy to society.
*shudder*

Old Post 06-09-13 23:53 #
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Technician
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fraggle said:
The whistleblower behind the leaks has been revelaed as a CIA analyst, here's an interview with him.
He's MIA. 'MURICA might have got him.

Old Post 06-11-13 02:27 #
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188DarkRevived
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If someone "mysteriously disappears from the face of the planet" it's an indicator that instead of spreading rumours they were revealing actual truth which enraged someone else to the point where drastic measures can be taken against them.
I kinda know what it's like, but nvm. :/

Old Post 06-11-13 02:44 #
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printz
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I hope Richard Stallman starts a speech on how he was right about proprietary software's surveillance.

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Old Post 06-11-13 12:04 #
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Kontra Kommando
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Could it be possible that one of the reasons Xbox One has a mandatory camera on it's console, so if necessary, the government could have a visual description of people who play violent video games? With the extent of which they monitor us now, it really wouldn't surprise me. Not that it was done particularly for this reason, but it could be a possible scenario where the gov't can request such information. Think about all of the stuff you say in private while playing a game. Burst of anger and frustration recorded on camera can be skewed, and used as incriminating evidence that the person has an unstable character, which is pretty convincing for people outside of the gaming community (i.e. tight-ass social conservatives, and politicians.)

Last edited by Kontra Kommando on 06-12-13 at 16:12

Old Post 06-12-13 16:04 #
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Maes
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printz said:
I hope Richard Stallman starts a speech on how he was right about proprietary software's surveillance.


What about Free and Open Source surveillance software?

Old Post 06-12-13 17:46 #
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Quasar
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Kontra Kommando said:
Could it be possible that one of the reasons Xbox One has a mandatory camera on it's console, so if necessary, the government could have a visual description of people who play violent video games? With the extent of which they monitor us now, it really wouldn't surprise me. Not that it was done particularly for this reason, but it could be a possible scenario where the gov't can request such information. Think about all of the stuff you say in private while playing a game. Burst of anger and frustration recorded on camera can be skewed, and used as incriminating evidence that the person has an unstable character, which is pretty convincing for people outside of the gaming community (i.e. tight-ass social conservatives, and politicians.)

You're likely to be called a conspiracy nut if you say that's the reason they put the camera on there; however, once you DO have the camera in your house, you had better believe the government will be salivating to get Microsoft to allow them access to the feeds.

They've already done it in the past with On*Star, spying on people in their vehicles by listening in on them. It was ruled as inadmissable evidence in court, IIRC, but that didn't stop them from trying it. No reason to believe Kinect won't be treated the same way.

Old Post 06-12-13 18:59 #
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Quasar said:

You're likely to be called a conspiracy nut if you say that's the reason they put the camera on there; however, once you DO have the camera in your house, you had better believe the government will be salivating to get Microsoft to allow them access to the feeds.



Yea, the main reason is so they could data mine and try to sell you more crap in hopes of impulse consumption. But i bet if the gov't requested to have access to a particular gamer's cam feed, MS would hand it over in a heart beat.

Old Post 06-12-13 19:02 #
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Maes
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Hmm...but blacklisting people for playing violent video games that are legally developed and sold would mean that they'd start treating video games in the same way as alcohol, tobacco or pornography: yeah, they are sold legally and tolerated by society -for the most part- but their abuse is not tolerated or considered medically/psychologically compromising. Now, if somehow it was possible to obtain ultra-violent videogames only in the black market or somesuch, I might understand....but we're talking about a heavily regulated platform with 100% legal distribution channels here.

Old Post 06-12-13 19:08 #
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hex11
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I swear it, the amerikan fedz are not in Xbox!

http://www.welovetheiraqiinformationminister.com/images/07-minister.jpg

Old Post 06-12-13 21:56 #
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Technician
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Archived information of Snowden's pre-NSA internet history use against his image. Apparently he was un-American an angst-ridden teen.

Oh, wow! Don't piss off the government, or they'll use your porn search history to publicly humiliate you.

Old Post 06-12-13 22:57 #
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Technician said:
Archived information of Snowden's pre-NSA internet history use against his image. Apparently he was un-American an angst-ridden teen.

Oh, wow! Don't piss off the government, or they'll use your porn search history to publicly humiliate you.



he should just reconfigure his whole public persona as a shameless gg allen-type, and continue to piss them off.

Old Post 06-12-13 23:24 #
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Kontra Kommando said:
he should just reconfigure his whole public persona as a shameless gg allen-type, and continue to piss them off.
I fucking love GG-Allin.

Old Post 06-12-13 23:30 #
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Maes
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BBC article sez:
Some calculations have concluded that in East Germany there was one informer to every seven citizens.



Isn't technology wonderful? Now you don't even need to employ an army of professional eavesdroppers and recruit everyone from the greengrocer to the paperboy off-the-record to keep tabs on the populace!

And OK, Communist governments and dictatorships in general tend to be extremely paranoid when it comes to the existence of potential subversive elements, no matter how tiny. What's the USA's excuse, which once championed themselves as Paladins of the Free World?

Old Post 06-12-13 23:41 #
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But none of the stuff they listed in that article is at all damning in any way. It's like reading the profile of a typical american teen.

Old Post 06-12-13 23:41 #
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hex11 said:
But none of the stuff they listed in that article is at all damning in any way. It's like reading the profile of a typical american teen.
Implying the population isn't full of retards stupid enough to demand a birth certificate becasue they have to grasp scraps of information to justify perpetual discrimination towards someone they don't like.

Any piece of information, if lame, can be used to fuel mud-slinging circle-jerks and the media hate machine..

Old Post 06-13-13 00:11 #
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Gez
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Turns out, Snowden was once a teenager

I agree that this is criminal. If you ask me, we should kill all the people who once were teenagers.


I really don't see the point for a newspaper to publish this. It's non-information; and probably the poorest attempt at character assassination in a long while.

Old Post 06-13-13 00:19 #
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dew
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Gez said:
and probably the poorest attempt at character assassination in a long while.

yeah, it's kind of tame, but they already used up all their best stuff when they called kim dotcom fat and good at video games. oh and assange, that bastard was supposedly making holes into condoms!!!

Old Post 06-13-13 00:32 #
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188DarkRevived
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Technician said:
Archived information of Snowden's pre-NSA internet history use against his image. Apparently he was un-American an angst-ridden teen.
Oh, wow! Don't piss off the government, or they'll use your porn search history to publicly humiliate you.


Kinda freaky how he's almost walking in the same shoes as I once did.
Hopefully he'll prove to be a survivor just like I did. Break through the falling ceiling!
Go Snowden, Go! Go Snowden, Go! RahRahRah!!! :)
That's the spirit!
....*akhem* Excuse me. :/

Old Post 06-13-13 02:27 #
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Clonehunter
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inb4 Doomworld becomes a top site

Old Post 06-13-13 02:33 #
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188DarkRevived
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Clonehunter said:
inb4 Doomworld becomes a top site

Fat chance of that ever happening. DOOM is so out-of-style these days. :p

Old Post 06-13-13 03:13 #
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Technician said:
I fucking love GG-Allin.


Hell yea, me too. I'm friends with Unk, from his documentary.

Last edited by Kontra Kommando on 06-13-13 at 03:23

Old Post 06-13-13 03:15 #
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Bucket
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To say nothing of my stance on the issue - from what I understand, "monitoring" would be the wrong word to use in this case. It would suggest that there is some observation going on. Instead, data is aggregated by machine and if feds have a case to build, they still need a warrant to access the data.

Old Post 06-13-13 03:46 #
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Maes
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188DarkRevived said:

Fat chance of that ever happening. DOOM is so out-of-style these days. :p



I wonder how come Zynga/facebook didn't consider making a Doom-based mafia wars-style game. $$$ out the ass, baby! Just imagine how many joe sixpacks would spend "zynga points", "doom points" or whatever they'd call them to buy upgrades to e.g. the Super Shotgun or BFG or simply "cool, new skins" for their marine ;-)

Old Post 06-13-13 09:13 #
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MRB_Doom
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Big Brother on monster steroids. Clinton and his ECHELON program, now Bush and Obama with PRISM. And Google glass was it? Can the nightmare get any worse?

Old Post 06-13-13 10:39 #
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