This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Comments here or emails to me at abulsme@abulsme.com are encouraged... or follow me on Twitter as @abulsme.

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@abulsme tweets from 2013-06-17 (UTC)

2 comments to @abulsme tweets from 2013-06-17 (UTC)

  • Ruth M Brandon

    We’ve always had government snooping and collecting data on us – 1950ish Joe McCarthy saw communists everywhere – 1960s and later J. Edgar Hoover had spies collecting about those seeking change and many more – today is different only in capacity of current technology – which I think does need to have limits – I really like the capacity to have a private life and to think out of the box

  • The difference today is entirely scale and technology. Of course these things have always happened, and have always been abused. But now the capability exists… and is being used… to capture vast amounts of information in a completely un-targeted fashion. Not snooping on or surveillance of particular groups or people of interest… with the technology of 50 years ago… or even 20 years ago… you had to be selective. But now you can record almost everything about almost everybody. (There are still limits to this of course, but decreasing each year.) Later you can go back and search for things within that big mass of data. “Give me everybody in Atlanta who sent email mentioning Pineapples in February 2011.” Or “Bob was never suspicious before, but he seems to be making trouble these days, lets go dig up anything we can on him from the last 15 years that might be interesting.” And yes, that kind of power can of course be used “for good”, and rules exist restricting somewhat how this information is to be used to try to make sure it is used only for “approved” purposes, but the technology exists, and those rules will inevitably be broken and the capabilities abused. If it isn’t already happening, it is only a matter of time.

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