Explaining To Congress That Blocking YouTube Videos Doesn't Stop Terrorism

from the that's-not-a-strategy dept

We've pointed out in the past how ridiculous it is to suggest that forcing YouTube to delete videos from terrorist groups actually does anything to harm terrorist groups. It's not like some random person is coming across those videos and saying "hey, that makes sense, now I'll be a terrorist." In fact, by monitoring those videos, law enforcement can actually find out more about what terrorists are saying and what they're up to. Yet, we've had politicians attack websites that don't automatically pull down such videos.

Thankfully, there are people who recognize this is ridiculous. It looks like a bunch of experts testified at a House Committee hearing on homeland security, and repeatedly made this point:
"A mandate requiring the removal of terror-recruiting content online could be counterproductive to the fight against terrorism," said John Morris Jr., general counsel of the Center for Democracy and Technology. "Using appropriate legal process, government agencies may be able gain invaluable information about terrorist operations by monitoring online sites and services."

Anthony Romero, executive director of the ACLU, urged the committee against "sacrificing our civil liberties in pursuit of security."

"We leave it to others to debate whether evidence shows that terrorists’ use of the Internet makes them more effective or simply more vulnerable to interception of their communications," Romero said. "Instead we are here to implore this subcommittee not to level its legislative guns at this most democratic of communications tools."
Hopefully, the politicians listen, but I fear the opportunity to grandstand on this issue will be too much of a draw.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    icon
    ECA (profile), May 27th, 2010 @ 6:17pm

    Fun isnt it

    The idea of creating a mouse trap from Scratch is fun, when one already exists.
    USE what they WANT to place out there.

    This is like a MOUSE Making the CHEESE.
    Why get rid of the CHEESE and MAKE your own? do you think its any easier to catch the mouse?
    USE HIS cheese, and monitor it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    icon
    FreemonSandlewould (profile), May 27th, 2010 @ 6:55pm

    Dear Fun Isn't it:

    If you want to catch a mouse make a noise like a cheese.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    icon
    Matthew Krum (profile), May 27th, 2010 @ 8:10pm

    Or...

    Or just bye a cat.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    icon
    The Groove Tiger (profile), May 27th, 2010 @ 10:44pm

    "sacrificing our civil liberties in pursuit of security."

    Wouldn't that be sacrificing civil liberties in pursuit of diminished security?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 27th, 2010 @ 10:55pm

    Re:

    @The Groove Tiger
    "Wouldn't that be sacrificing civil liberties in pursuit of diminished security?"
    No, it is definitely in pursuit of security. They just don't realise that they are running, Wily Coyote style, in totally the wrong direction.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 27th, 2010 @ 11:18pm

    Explaining things to politicians only works if a bribe is attached.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    Josef, May 28th, 2010 @ 1:00am

    Re: Wrong

    It's not a bribe. It's called lobbying. Legal bribery.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    icon
    Svante Jorgensen (profile), May 28th, 2010 @ 3:01am

    Ahh, the classical "Hide the symptoms and pretend the problem goes away"-policy.
    Here we go again.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    Dr. Strangelove, May 28th, 2010 @ 6:53am

    YouTube

    Thus far, there are three scholarly books available on the subject of YouTube:

    The YouTube Reader, (2009) Edited by Snickars and Vonderau
    YouTube: Online Video and Participatory Culture, (2009) by Burgess and Green

    and this one:

    Watching YouTube: Extraordinary Videos by Ordinary People (University of Toronto Press, 2010).

    Table of Contents

    Introduction
    1. Home Movies in a Global Village
    2. The Home and Family on YouTube
    3. Video Diaries: The Real You in YouTube
    4. Women of the ‘Tube
    5. The YouTube Community
    6. The YouTube Wars: Elections, Religion, and Armed Conflict
    7. The Post-television Audience
    Conclusion

    -- Dr. Strangelove

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
    icon
    Boraxo (profile), Jun 1st, 2010 @ 12:48pm

    Yeah, its not like...

    ...some bored American will see these, decide to dub herself Jihad Jane, and try to become a terrorist. We've started to see bored dimwit chicks who want to play with the terrorist bad boys (a single mother in, IIRC, Colorado, just disappeared to meet up with her online terrorist boyfriend).
    Now whether banning these videos will work, who knows, you still have chat rooms. But yeah, people sometimes do see these and decide to join the merry band of thugs.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    icon
    lrobbo (profile), Jun 12th, 2012 @ 11:28am

    Big bribe = big understanding.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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