from the imaginary-spygames dept
Not that anyone ever doubted it, but the fact that the NSA really hates Ed Snowden became crystal clear this week. Our most insightful comment comes from That Anonymous Coward in response to some of their fiery feelings about the whistleblower:
If you remove the names, do the comments seem that different from people describing people who have left the cult and spoken out against it?
The family is more important.
We all care for each other.
We are so betrayed.
This person wasn't a true believer.
Perhaps one should question the activities of these zealots with the same critical eye they turn towards "religious" leaders who keep their followers away from the world in secret compounds.
Second place for insightful goes to The Resident Skeptic for a thorough reminder of the fact that you can kill all the technologies you want, and the network will live on:
Pre-internet saw the rise of the BBS - where people wanted to share files, and did so with NO central oversight. BBS phone numbers were freely copied and shared - many people connected to hundreds of "sites" with simple dial-up modems. A LOT more was done than the industries ever realized. The "internet" centralized it where it became visible and made it a target. Pre-"It's mine and you can't use it" we had every monthly magazine publishing SOURCE CODE which was freely shared (remember @copyleft?) because people wanted to share and wanted to learn and wanted to share what they enjoyed.
The internet allowed us to do so on a much grander scale - because people want to share what they love and technology allows them to do so easier than ever before. (Try typing in 1000 lines of code out of a magazine with folds in it ... you really learn debugging!)
CULTURE comes from sharing what we love. "The Internet" is just the current mechanism for doing so. Go ahead and take it over. See what happens. Just as has been pointed out - DRM is broken in minutes; phones are jailbroken the day they come out; there is NO technology that can't be circumvented (laws that no one believes in are useless).
People will develop "another way". And, it will be harder to track, harder to find... and the companies will still be standing around wondering what happened and why no one is using their nearly useless service.
Adapt or Die.
The net doesn't care.
People don't care about the success or failure of YOUR business. They care about the things they enjoy. CULTURE is something which MUST BE shared and enjoyed. Locking it up will fail. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME.
This network may die. But the next one...
For editor's choice on the insightful side, we've got two more people expounding on the government's hatred for Snowden. First up, there's FM Hilton reminding the NSA about the privacy-violator's favorite phrase:
What, the NSA doesn't believe this statement:
"If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear."
Guess they were surprised they had something to hide.
Too bad it took someone with guts and ethics to show them otherwise.
It sucks to be them, doesn't it?
Next, we've got BentFranklin with a response to the altogether disturbing revelation that the intelligence community is openly fantasizing about assassinating Snowden:
Clearly they feel betrayed. They feel Snowden betrayed America because they feel they are America. They don't realize how far from the true spirit of America they have strayed.
Over on the funny side, first place goes to blaktron for his advice to the frequent losers in the world of copyright law:
God, this damn 'public' group you keep talking about really could do with some representation in congress. Why haven't they hired lobbyists??? Geeze, what a poorly managed group...
For second place we return to the post about the fantasy Snowden assassination, which included a vivid hypothetical about poisoning him on the streets of Moscow. Michael suggested we use another federal agency's favorite tactic against them:
The FBI needs to find this guy, buy him a ticket to Moscow, get him a passport, a syringe, and then arrest him for platting to kill someone.
For editor's choice on the funny side, we've got a one-two punch that bridges the Techdirt realms of copyright and privacy. First, pegr asked a simple question about a striking analogy:
If the NSA doesn't "collect" my data until they look at it, then that song I downloaded doesn't count as pirated until I listen to it, right?
In response, Beech, who wasn't too sure if that argument would hold up alone, offered the other piece of the puzzle:
It depends. Are you "collecting" songs because terrorism? If so, then you are in the clear, Patriot.
That's all for this week, folks! We're off tomorrow for MLK Day, and back to business as usual on Tuesday.