People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

from the sad dept

Reason has a great (if disappointing) post noting the very different reactions from both the press and the public to silly and exaggerated stories about privacy issues around Facebook as compared to the Senate reapproving the FISA Amendments Act, which has almost certainly allowed massive surveillance of and collection of data and communications from millions of Americans. You'd think the latter would deserve more attention, but nope.

There's currently nothing on the New York Times web site about the votes (either yesterday's or today's). The Associated Press wrote a story about the House's vote in September but nothing yet from yesterday or today. The Washington Post did post a story this morning. A Google news search will land hits with mostly tech or web-based media outlets.

Compare the lack of response to the way people react to privacy breaches connected to Facebook or Twitter. Media outlet after media outlet carried reports about a private picture of Randi Zuckerberg, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg's sister, accidentally being made public somehow through social media channels. And how many of your Facebook friends posted that silly, pointless "privacy notice" on their walls?

The post, by Scott Shackford, notes that you can't just blame the media for failing to cover the FISA Amendments Act votes -- they're just responding to what the public wants. And because Facebook seems more "real" to people than the NSA recording all their info, it seems to hit closer to home, even if one is a real abuse of privacy, and the other isn't.

The degradation of the Fourth and Fifth Amendments is an academic or theoretical matter for so many people and often lacks a strong human narrative to draw public outrage. Indeed, the very secrecy behind the application of federal domestic wiretapping has made it impossible to introduce a human narrative. We do not even know how many Americans have been spied on due to these rules (which was what Wyden's amendment was trying to fix). Like our foreign drone strikes and indefinite detention laws, the public's distance from the actual rights violations (and government-fueled fears of acts of terrorism) is a useful barrier for the state to get away with expanding its authority beyond the Constitution's limitations without significant voter pushback.

Whereas, just about everybody's on Facebook. Facebook's privacy systems affect them directly every day, and they see it. So Americans are furious that Instagram might sell their photos, while shrugging at what the federal government might do with the exact same data.

As he points out, this is why it's been so important for the government to keep the details of its spying program a secret. If people realized that the government really was sweeping up all sorts of data, they might realize that this directly impacts them too. But, that's all secret.


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    Zakida Paul (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 11:36am

    People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

    Which is weird because the worst FB will to is target ads at you which can be blocked anyway. Governments and their massive inefficiency are likely to ruin your life with false accusations due to misinterpretation of completely innocuous activities.

     

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      Chuck Norris' Enemy (deceased) (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 11:42am

      Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

      But corporations are greedy and evil and the government are benevolent issuing equality and fairness to all.

       

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        Zakida Paul (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 12:03pm

        Re: Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

        Well, corporations are greedy and evil but governments are just as greedy and evil. Corruption is rife in the upper classes.

         

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        annonomus coward, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 8:19pm

        Re: Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

        But some animals are more equal than others,

         

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          art guerrilla (profile), Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 7:45am

          Re: Re: Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

          four legs good, 2 legs bah-hhhhhdddd ! ! !

           

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 4:39pm

      Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

      people freak out about Instagram and copyright/IP protection of PERSONAL PHOTOS but ignore widespread copyright infringement of OTHERS work... (sign)

      the blind leading the naked, again.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 6:02am

        Re: Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

        People obviously value personal photos more than films. You can get a personal photo printed for $0.10 so obviously a film should be less than that.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 8:09am

          Re: Re: Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

          that's some bizarre logic. a personal photo "costs" nothing to make but films costs 10s of millions and are valued much more - to the people who make them - than crappy instagram photos.

           

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      SlickR, Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 12:22am

      Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

      They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. - Benjamin Franklin

      GOVERNMENT IS NOT REASON, IT IS NOT ELOQUENCE, IT IS FORCE. LIKE FIRE, IT IS A DANGEROUS SERVANT AND A FEARFUL MASTER…” - George Washington

       

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        dennis deems (profile), Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 8:51am

        Re: Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

        Oh to have lived in a time when politicians like them were the majority.

         

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      Arlyn Summerlee, Mar 29th, 2013 @ 3:41am

      Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore Widespread Government Surveillance

      No, the worst thing facebook can do is pop it's 50billion dollar bubble and then get bailed out via an ownership agreement with the U.S. Government, just like the airlines, auto industry, insurance companies and banks. Then they won't need warrants at all to access any data.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 11:37am

    Come on we all know our government would never spy on its own people.

    Try saying that and keeping a straight face.

     

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    Shadow Dragon (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 11:38am

    Dear OOTB

    Do you realize the things you espouse could take away your right to troll here and other sites like this.Think about if you troll people to many time someone can complain you ISP and get you cutoff or even worse put you on a ban list that you may never can use the internet again,No more trolling Techdirt just because you're bored and need attention.

     

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    Shadow Dragon (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 11:38am

    Dear OOTB

    Do you realize the things you espouse could take away your right to troll here and other sites like this.Think about if you troll people to many time someone can complain you ISP and get you cutoff or even worse put you on a ban list that you may never can use the internet again,No more trolling Techdirt just because you're bored and need attention.

     

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    out_of_the_blue, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 11:44am

    People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore -- GOOGLE.

    Such as here. Never a mention by Mike that Google is spying on us all, keeping its lists.





    Take a loopy tour of Techdirt.com! You always end up at same place!
    http://techdirt.com/
    Where "no evidence of real harm" means let secretive mega-corporations continue to grow.

     

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      weneedhelp (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 12:18pm

      Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore -- GOOGLE.

      Fuckin a. Google is Santa.

      keeping its lists, and checking them twice no doubt.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 6:54pm

        Re: Re: People Freak Out About Privacy On Facebook, But Ignore -- GOOGLE.

        "Google is Santa". And Santa is an anagram of Satan.

         

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    Konstantinos (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 12:18pm

    Heh

    Some people don't mind being under surveillance if they believe it is for their own protection, even if it directly affects their privacy.

    I found this out myself when I went public with Blizzard secretly watermarking all screenshots produced by the game World of Warcraft. Even though a lot of people agreed that Blizzard should have mentioned this in the Terms of Service, a large number of trolls, I mean, people, stated that they don't mind having their account data secretly watermarked if it helps Blizzard catch bad guys performing game hacks.

    The problem was/is that the watermarked data were/are unencrypted, so anyone could have decoded them, thus continuously stalking uninformed gamers.

    People are getting more and more used to the idea that personal data gathering is used for their own protection/benefit, without realizing that, be it private companies or government agencies, the same rule always applies: "You will be treated as guilty, just in case you ever decide to actually break bad".


    PS: Techdirt didn't even mention the Blizzard watermark issue. Why Mike, why? :P

     

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    jmb98115, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 12:19pm

    Facebook is a voluntary and optional societal activity , but governance is not.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 12:25pm

    it's just because the people always think that whatever's happening only affects others. until it's too late, that is!

     

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    Suzanne Lainson (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 12:28pm

    Hammer them all

    I'm actually far more concerned about what private companies do than I am about government agencies because I think the private companies are amassing more data than government and putting in more resources into cross-referencing it. I don't think government is as interested in as many details of our lives as private companies are.

    Look, the holy grail of private companies is to have us all using mobile devices that feed everything we do into databases which can then be used and sold to marketers. The government doesn't really want to monitor every citizen to the extent that private companies do. And I am pretty sure that these companies amassing all this data on people would be very happy to provide it to governments for the right price. As they say, data is the new oil.

    If anything, I think the private companies want to shut out government so that the private companies are the only ones in possession of all this info on private citizens and then they can sell it to governments. Really, government intelligence often involves private contractors anyway.

    The game is to lessen laws on private companies gathering data and shift the focus to governments, so the private companies get a free pass and governmental agencies stay out of their way. It's not really about privacy protection at all.

     

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      TroutFishingUSA, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 2:18pm

      Re: Hammer them all

      I'm actually far more concerned about what private companies do than I am about government agencies because I think the private companies are amassing more data than government and putting in more resources into cross-referencing it. I don't think government is as interested in as many details of our lives as private companies are.


      This. It's like the whole "death panels" scare. While the concern was definitely overblown to Logan's Run-level proportions, it still boiled down to a simple point: do you want your access to healthcare determined by private entities who need not answer to anybody, or the government which (ideally) we as people have some control over?

      Same deal with the TSA. Airport security run by the government, who we elect, or private companies who are basically allowed to run roughshod over people's rights?

      The government doesn't really want to monitor every citizen to the extent that private companies do.


      Exactly. Anyone who has studied espionage and data-collection by military agencies et al quickly learns that an over-abundance of information is usually their problem, not a lack of it. 9/11, for instance, only seems foreseeable in hindsight because it's easy for us to now disregard the hundreds of thousands of meaningless communiques intercepted by the NSA at the time.

      Private companies on the other hand never know what information might turn out to be valuable, so they keep it all. (Hell, just think about the average freeloader's media collection full of movies and music s/he'll never find time to listen to, yet it's all held on to in hope that it might turn out to be useful). To the government, a post about what you ate for dinner can be ignored immediately, but Google might like that info! The encryption and data retention methods employed by private companies far outpaces the government. Famously, Google's data centers alone pull the equivalent power of 200,000 US homes.

      The game is to lessen laws on private companies gathering data and shift the focus to governments, so the private companies get a free pass and governmental agencies stay out of their way. It's not really about privacy protection at all.


      Quoted for emphasis.

       

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        nasch (profile), Jan 6th, 2013 @ 4:50pm

        Re: Re: Hammer them all

        Same deal with the TSA. Airport security run by the government, who we elect, or private companies who are basically allowed to run roughshod over people's rights?

        I would think of it as security run by the government, who doesn't give a crap about passengers (citizens), or by airlines, who need to satisfy their customers to stay in business? And what makes you think the TSA is accountable to anyone or respects people's rights?

         

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      Chosen Reject (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 2:22pm

      Re: Hammer them all

      The government is just as interested in all your data as private companies are. SCOTUS ruled that your data is not protected by the 4th amendment if another holds it, so the government wants private companies to pay for the data collection and cross-linking, then they can swoop in with a warrant (or less) and get everything about you.

      It's true that in general the government isn't interested in you. But once they do get interested in you, they want everything about you, whether it's relevant to the reason they originally got interested in you or not, and whether the original reason was related to crime or just simple curiosity.

       

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        Suzanne Lainson (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 2:39pm

        Re: Re: Hammer them all

        The government is just as interested in all your data as private companies are. SCOTUS ruled that your data is not protected by the 4th amendment if another holds it, so the government wants private companies to pay for the data collection and cross-linking, then they can swoop in with a warrant (or less) and get everything about you.

        Be wary about government monitoring all you want. I just don't want to give private data collection a pass. I hope the pressure is put on Facebook, Google, and the like so that people are aware of how much info they are collecting. They aren't necessarily the "good" guys here.

         

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        Suzanne Lainson (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 2:52pm

        Re: Re: Hammer them all

        I'll add that perhaps it bothers some of these private companies that government can come in with a warrant and get the info for free. But, on the other hand, I'm sure the companies would be willing to sell lots of info/access to files if the price is right.

        If the information is available for sale to clients, I'm sure the info can be be purchased by government, either directly by a government agency or via a private company acting on the government's behalf.

        Also, many websites say that while they won't "sell" your information, they will make it available to "partners." That leaves a lot of doors open.

         

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          John Fenderson (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 4:05pm

          Re: Re: Re: Hammer them all

          If the information is available for sale to clients, I'm sure the info can be be purchased by government, either directly by a government agency or via a private company acting on the government's behalf.


          Indeed, and they do. Remember those price lists that were leaked last year? Major telecoms have them for law enforcement agencies, telling the LEOs how much it costs for various kinds and quantities of their customer information.

          Constitutional protections largely do not exist when you're dealing with a private entity. They can, and do, sell your information directly to the government and anyone else they wish. No warrant needed. Often, they just give it away.

           

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 12:56pm

    The Wiretapping miracle

    And then you can look at the Wall Street Journal and read their praises of the "Wiretapping Miracle." Brutal and staunchly anti-Constitution, but not at all surprising from a paper owned by a man who has been involved in illegal wiretapping scandals.

     

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    Lord Binky, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 1:33pm

    This is actually straightforward.

    People freak out about privacy on facebook because they feel they can have an impact on the policy.

    People do not freak out about widespread government surveillance because they feel they can not have an impact on the policy.

    I think this is also a sign of a significant difference in how much respect or the expectations people have for the government and facebook.

    Sadly this would mean people respect facebook more than the government. Excluding doing it pointlessly, ie freaking out at a rock, raising commotion or freaking out is a human response based on the assumption that the other party can be reasoned with to achieve a desired response. In this case, the government is treated similar to a petrified turd while facebook is treated more like a person.

     

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      Anon, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 11:25pm

      Re:

      This is exactly how I feel. There have been so many attacks on the privacy of individuals by the government lately I feel like it's an endless exhausting fight (SOPA, PIPA).

      I feel like this is completely out of my control. I feel that the people in general are helpless when it comes to choosing what legislation gets passed and which doesn't. Sure you could go protest, but who has time for that, or who can afford to sit day after day protesting? You may delay the passing of one bill, but then as soon as you go back to work/home they pass on another. It's so depressing...

      Their occupation is governance while mine can't be defending my rights 24/7.

      This is why I generally don't read these articles. It makes me feel like crap and not in control. I know it's like burying my head in the sand but it's so depressing reading and watching my rights being taken away little by little and feeling like I can't do anything about it.

       

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        Lord Binky, Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 7:35am

        Re: Re:

        I feel like there isn't any reasoning in political discussions. The source of an idea is more important than the idea itself or any of it's merits.

        If a ______ proposes solution #1, then you have people automatically against the idea with no comprimise whatsoever. If 'well a _____ came up with that so you know it can't be good' is someone's reasoning, there is no logical reasoning and it's not productive to even bother communicating with them.

         

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    That Anonymous Coward (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 2:00pm

    I don't understand any of this...
    its not like the FBI was datamining using outside information brokers and funneling the results to terrorism fusion centers.
    Er wait...
    Nevermind
    http://www.justiceonline.org/commentary/fbi-files-ows.html

    Its nice that the banks also get the benefit of the data and being able to carry out spy operations on citizens exercising those silly rights we are supposed to have.

    But then more people care and vote for the next American Idol than president...

     

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    Jesse (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 2:10pm

    So long as individuals do not face unwanted publicity from the governments erosion of personal privacy, no one is likely to care.

    People don't care about privacy unless it obviously impacts them.

     

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    velox (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 5:04pm

    Warrantless surveillance

    As a practical matter, the government is able to vacuum up large troves of information because all 3 branches of government appear to have agreed to ignore the seemingly plain language in the 4th amendment requiring a warrant, issued upon probable cause to suspect that a crime has been committed, prior to searching "persons, houses, papers, and effects". If the requirement for a warrant was being respected, the government would be restricted to only collecting information related to actual suspicion of crime.

    Unfortunately many Americans can't wrap their head around the word "warrantless".
    They like the idea that the government is wiretapping suspected terrorists, but they don't appear to understand or have an interest in the idea that wiretapping a person who is suspected of terror or other criminal activity is not the same thing as tapping anyone, anytime, for any reason that law enforcement desires.
    Warrants are a paper trail that protect us from government employees acting in a malevolent fashion. Warrants ensure that a second opinion about the necessity or appropriateness of the tap is obtained. Law enforcement complains that warrants get in the way and they don't have time in an emergency situation.
    My response to all of the above is to compare to the medical community. Physicians must do their paperwork if they want to operate. Imagine a surgeon who could do anything he/she wanted during an operation but was not required to have any paper-trail to document it. Without question the public would be less safe.
    With respect to emergent situations, I do not see that a warrant requirement has to slow down law enforcement. We have doctors on call in order to keep the public safe from middle of the night emergencies. There is no reason that judges couldn't be on call for middle of the night emergencies as well.

     

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      Suzanne Lainson (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 5:33pm

      Re: Warrantless surveillance

      I think being vigilant about how government uses data is important. But I want to stress, over and over again, that the data is being collected and is being used and the companies that are collecting it are asking to have as little monitoring of their activities as possible.

      I don't think it is enough to say government can't have the data but data collectors and their clients can have it.

      At the very least, consumers need to know how to use tools to inhibit that data collection. And if tracking blockers screw up online advertising and the web companies they support, so be it. If we end up stepping away from mobile because it is location-based, so be it. If we decide not to use Google broadband because it gives Google too much control over our lives, so be it. If Facebook goes down the tubes because it can't be trusted, so be it.

       

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        velox (profile), Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 10:37pm

        Re: Re: Warrantless surveillance

        "consumers need to know how to use tools to inhibit that data collection"
        Yes, but unfortunately the most well known tools such as 'Do Not Track' browser configurations virtually worthless. Do Not Track is nothing more than politely asking people who profit from your data not to take your data.

        The only thing that works with certainty is a firewall with outbound blocking ability. Most consumer firewalls don't block outbound traffic, and even if you run those that do, they are somewhat of a pain to manage because they not infrequently hinder your online experience. Using outbound blocking requires the user to use judgement, and to take the time to manually unblock at times.
        IT security firms have largely ignored outbound firewall strategies and have only focused on what to keep out instead.

        If you wonder why the most popular computer security programs don't have outbound firewalls, well here's a little fact they don't want you to know: Many of the big name security and anti-viral firms are actually right in there purloining your data for sale to others. They are scarcely any different in this regard that the companies who more openly acknowledge that they take your information. To name a couple of names -- AVG and Symantec.

        Furthermore Microsoft has a long history of aiding and abetting anyone who wants to get data out of your computer by making tools such as LSP and more recently WFP technology which can allow silent interception of all of your IP traffic, including SSL. WFP is embedded in the kernel and is meant to be undetectable and not removable. Microsoft does not provide the user with any way to prevent this kind of activity.

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 6:51pm

    Well to be fair I freaked out a long time ago and do nothing in the open that I can't encrypt myself.

    This is after all my best interest and I am sure not leaving it for others to do "the right thing" here.

    The government is doing what it is doing because people don't seem to care, well, the day everyone starts to secure their communications is the day that the government will be forced to come open and try to stop people from being secure all the time, that is the time when a human narrative will appear.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 5th, 2013 @ 7:41pm

      Re:

      I'm sorry to be the barer of bad news, but MITM, cool math tricks (like rainbow algorithms), and not-so-expensive CPU cycles makes short work of your encryption now-a-days. That all is, if it's encrypted correctly in the first place. Most of the time, your apps can be tricked with fake CA responses or other MITM trickery.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 7:06pm

    In a way the public not freaking out about something they can't see is a good thing, if people was to freak out about everything they didn't know we would have some problems along the way.

    In a way is like people not freaking out about seeing smoke, they try to find out where it is coming from and freak out only when they can see the fire for real, this is a good thing me thinks.

    Facebook showed to them and so people freaked out, the government can be a bit more stealth, but ultimately if all people start securing or a large number of people start securing their communications, the government will have to reveal themselves, also this kind of thing promotes the creation of secure communications.

    http://www.hacker10.com/encryption-software-2/3-ways-to-encrypt-your-voip-calls/
    http://sourceforge.net/directory/os:windows/freshness:recently-updated/?q=secure+voip

    You see the ultimate faith of your own privacy in this case fortunately lies in the hands of each and everyone of us, not the government, they would have to take away the right to people to communicate securely if they wanted to spy on that, and when that happens the shitestorm will come also.

     

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    Sauced, Jan 2nd, 2013 @ 10:19pm

    difference

    I think the major difference is that people pay a lot more attention to Facebook than their government, and have a problem when their privacy might be exploited for money. Most people don't understand the dangers of the same privacy being abused by their government and don't pay attention to it because they feel their government is still (for the most part) interested in their well being.

    tl;dr : The perception of most is that Facebook is for profit and their government is for the common good

     

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    SlickR, Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 12:19am

    Governments need major trimming

    They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety. - Benjamin Franklin

    GOVERNMENT IS NOT REASON, IT IS NOT ELOQUENCE, IT IS FORCE. LIKE FIRE, IT IS A DANGEROUS SERVANT AND A FEARFUL MASTER…” - George Washington

     

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    Loki, Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 1:55am

    It is because people have this conception (often well founded) that the larger the corporation are inherently less trustworthy of people's individual welfare. And yet they also hold the corresponding conception that governments, even those that no longer have an real accountability or honest oversight, are still concerned with the welfare of individuals (despite thousands of year of evidence to the contrary). Even more bizarre is people will often hold these contradictory beliefs even when the person/people running a corporation and an individual or group of elected officials are one and the same.

     

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    Ninja (profile), Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 2:34am

    Most people will ignore very vital things that the Governments around the world are messing with until it's too late. Then they'll not only freak out but they'll suffer the consequences of their alienation in a quite painful way. Sadly.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 3:54am

      Re:

      Most people are easily bored, they have to endure boring jobs already and I doubt many would have the time and energy to deal with the boring bureaucratic government machinery on their own, where you can send any paper and have it back annotated forcing you to redo it ten times or more until you get the hang of it.

      ps: You get the paper back annotated if you are lucky in some places you actually have to pay to know what was wrong with the filling, commonly a proxy of sorts like a guy who "understands" how it works and helps you out, which is a guy who has a friend inside who approves that BS.

       

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        Ninja (profile), Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 5:07am

        Re: Re:

        Point is, Governments have distanced themselves from the people to the point they need reform.

        Or rather, those in power have gone mad drunk with that power?

         

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    Suzanne Lainson (profile), Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 8:29am

    It isn't either/or, it is both

    But saying how bad government is, without also addressing private data collection, doesn't protect your privacy. If people only focus on government, I think they are doing it to hide what private companies are collecting (and can therefore provide to government).

    If your information is being amassed by anyone, it is available to hackers, to private companies, to government. That's the big problem. A networked world is a world with decreasing privacy unless we take steps no one has yet fully taken. Most companies WANT to decrease your privacy because there is money to be made in knowing everything about you.

     

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    Ann326, Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 8:59am

    "Privacy"

    I think privacy is really an anachronism nowadays. Some people have their hair on fire about govt. surveillance, some about Facebook and other social media sites' policies but meanwhile what about the data routinely gathered by commercial companies. Most people pay for everything with a credit card - what a complete profile to hand marketers. Should anyone (marketer, boss, govt., neighbor) really know how much ice cream (wine, cleaning products, etc.) you buy? I don't thionk so but when we use the card for these purchases, we give up privacy. I think as a society we have opted for convenience over privacy.

     

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    identicon
    Ann326, Jan 3rd, 2013 @ 8:59am

    "Privacy"

    I think privacy is really an anachronism nowadays. Some people have their hair on fire about govt. surveillance, some about Facebook and other social media sites' policies but meanwhile what about the data routinely gathered by commercial companies. Most people pay for everything with a credit card - what a complete profile to hand marketers. Should anyone (marketer, boss, govt., neighbor) really know how much ice cream (wine, cleaning products, etc.) you buy? I don't thionk so but when we use the card for these purchases, we give up privacy. I think as a society we have opted for convenience over privacy.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2013 @ 7:16pm

    Govt is PRIVATE busy ness and vices verse us...

     

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    Suzanne Lainson (profile), Jan 6th, 2013 @ 6:01pm

    Social media and privacy will become yet a bigger issue

     

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


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