Politicians Overreacted To Terrorist 'Threat' Online
from the moral-panic dept
And, in fact, that's exactly what a new report is finding. The whole "freaking out about terrorists online" thing is totally overblown. The study found little evidence that terrorists were effectively recruiting people online, and even if they were, they found no conceivable way to stop such tools from being used by terrorists at all -- and pointed out how pointless it was to even try. At best, they would get some content taken down from a few websites, which would only serve to draw more attention to the content, which would quickly appear on other websites instead. But, of course, most politicians don't care. They need to create such moral panics so it looks like they're actually doing something to "protect the children" in order to get re-elected.
In the meantime, if they were really concerned about "terrorists" using technology, they might actually want to focus on getting the folks who hate us to use the technology even more. At least that's the feeling I get after reading this article about a Taliban leader and former Guantanamo prisoner, who's now obsessed with his iPhone. I have to admit, most of the article reads like an Onion-style parody ("'It's easy and modern and I love it,' Zaeef said as he pinched and pulled his fingers across the iPhone's touch screen last week. 'This is necessary in the world today. People want to progress.'"), but it does show that perhaps using enabling technology to allow people to better their lives, gets them a lot less focused on looking for ways to kill us.