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back to article Snowden to warn Brits on Xmas telly: Your children will NEVER have privacy

Celebrity whistleblower Edward Snowden will hit Britain's TV screens tomorrow to warn families: "A child born today will grow up with no conception of privacy at all." The ex-NSA sysadmin – temporarily exiled in Russia after leaking documents about the US and the UK's massive internet surveillance operations – will give this …

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Yawn

We grew up in the cold war and with the IRA. Tell us something we don't know.....

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Re: Yawn

Well it's one thing to have a defined and definite enemy, as with the cold war and the IRA, but it's another to have a society systematically trawled for all it's information regardless of it's value.

I'm all for finding and thwarting terrorists - but the NSA and GCHQ have been busy intercepting internet traffic and, it is alleged, this has not made any substantive impact on terror attacks.

I think that Snowden is right, has taken extreme risks in what he has done and it's instructive that the one place that he has been able to find asylum was, up until recently, the very worst of countries (we assumed) for monitoring it's citizens.

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Re: Yawn

Yes,you are right, I lived with the cold war and the IRA, and close enough to hear the bangs, more than once.

Most of us survived both, and without all this shit that is going down now.

Just remember, " Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." and that was said by a Yank! "Benjamin Franklin"

What a bloody sad joke that seems to be today!

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Unhappy

Re: Yawn

My parents lived through two world wars - my mother in London during the Blitz. If she were alive now she would be reduced to tears at the betrayal of all they fought for.

Yes, there's a lot you don't know.

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Holmes

@Will Godfrey - Re: Yawn

Wrote :- " my mother in London during the Blitz. If she were alive now she would be reduced to tears at the betrayal of all they fought for."

She was fighting for privacy? None of the people I know/knew who lived or fought in the war ever mentioned privacy as their objective. In fact most mentioned quite different things from each other (although mere "survival" comes up quite often) and certainly none of the things that present day politicians claim the war was for. These and others try to hijack the "high ground" for their own present-day issues which in most cases would be quite alien and bizarre to someone who actually lived in 1940.

One thing is certain - most of those who lived in 1940 would be in tears like your mother over the mess that the UK is in today, and I'm not thinking of privacy.

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Re: @Will Godfrey - Yawn

If privacy is what you think is the issue in all the Snowden stuff you've really, really missed the point.

The issue is the secret expansion of government authority and the ever widening gap between those who govern and those who are governed. So yes, WWII vets were fighting against invasion of privacy, but only as a side effect of totalitarian government.

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Re: @Will Godfrey - Yawn

The issue is the secret expansion of government authority and the ever widening gap between those who govern and those who are governed. So yes, WWII vets were fighting against invasion of privacy, but only as a side effect of totalitarian government.

I'm not much for emotive words, but you can summarise it IMHO much quicker: freedom. There is an awful lot of work going on that seems to have as single aim to establish a worldwide panoptikon. Yes, we have to catch bad guys, but the means for that already existed. Instead, resources are simply wasted on things that do not contribute one iota to the whole "bad guy catching" idea, but instead create the potential for more good people to be labelled as bad as and when convenient.

Until we have transparency in the need and use of all those "special" powers, the question "what do you have to hide?" should be asked by us. Continuously.

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Re: Yawn

That's the great news though.

With all this security our kids will grow up in a world with no crime or terrorism

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Re: Yawn

"this has not made any substantive impact on terror attacks."

The interceptions did work. Firstly, there has been no major terrorist attack in USA for quite a few years. Secondly, how do you think "martyrdom" of so many senior commanders of Taliban in Pakistan and Afghanistan was facilitated?

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Re: Yawn

My friends also yawned on me on the barbeque grill and ridiculed me for not having a tweetbook account.

They said that I just don't care enough for them and miss all the snaps they take.

I am feeling sad. Tomorrow I'll reactivate those accounts. I think what I'll do with this freedom without those friends. I am really sad :( and yawning. I think my 2 year child can yawn and wait for playing while I check those snaps.

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Re: Yawn

Firstly, there has been no major terrorist attack in USA for quite a few years.

Given the number of school shootings I reckon the fear factor was present already. No need to sponsor a couple of bad guys to push through more laws (that's the logical conclusion to the question "who benefits from all of this?" aka "follow the money").

Secondly, how do you think "martyrdom" of so many senior commanders of Taliban in Pakistan and Afghanistan was facilitated?

Given the amount of non-combatants killed (the euphemism "collateral damage" is IMHO too nice), it amounts to shooting 100 people in a shopping centre and then proudly announcing you must have killed at least one thief.

Now before you go into a rant of "you weren't there", please do not think I'm discounting the terrorist threat. I'm simply asking for some trustworthy indication that it really was worth the money and the loss of our way of life. IMHO, just using 10% of what was thrown out as a pool for reward money would have been just as effective. I can't see any of those goons stay alive that long if the reward for their head was to the tune of double digit millions (or, expressed in another form, the price of ONE of those guided rockets they sent into Bagdad).

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Re: Yawn

> Secondly, how do you think "martyrdom" of so many senior commanders of Taliban in Pakistan and Afghanistan was facilitated?

By real inteligence work, not stopping little old Canadian ladies flying to Florida to go on a cruise - because you had hacked her Canadian medical records and found she had once been treated for depression

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Re: Yawn

How does real intelligence work without leads? And how do you get leads from organizations whose rite of passage involves acts that cannot be condoned by any western power (such as the confirmed killing of an American soldier--treason under the Constitution) and who make sure to know where all your family live first?

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Re: Yawn

" If she were alive now she would be reduced to tears at the betrayal of all they fought for."

She has my sympathies, but she would need to accept that all that fighting to let Stalin invade and subjugate half of Europe went down with the Berlin wall.

Seriously, the past isn't as nice as we like to believe.

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Re: Yawn @ Slawec

No new terror attacks does not mean that increased security has been effective. It means there have been no recurrences of an extraordinarily rare event (terror attacks on the US).

The amount of terror attacks now is no less than it was in the 80's or 90's, it's just a rare thing and that makes the effectiveness of any security measures nearly impossible to measure in a meaningful way. Nobody know if the increased security helped, it sure didn't help in Boston, a city scared of a Lite-Brite. The security is there to make you feel better, if they happen to catch somebody that's a bonus.

Unfortunately, the only people they catch are the idiots and those who got setup by law enforcement from the get-go. We've created more terrorists that we've defeated because we keep taking unstable loudmouths, pumping them up and pressuring them into doing something, then arresting them as terrorists. I'm not sure empowering lunatics as a plot device in National Security Theater is really returning the results we'd like. The actual committed, and not retarded, terrorists still get through the defenses at the same level as before, it just costs us a lot more money to not stop them.

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Re: Yawn

My ground rule regarding all this is ...How far would Nelson Mandela have got if he kicked off now? Nuff said.

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Re: Yawn

Right....and without all that fighting Germany may have beaten Russia with only one front to fight on then the world would have been better, is that actually what your suggesting? I think you'd find the world would have a whole lot less ethnic variety.

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Re: bigtimebleater Re: Yawn

".....then the world would have been better, is that actually what your suggesting? I think you'd find the world would have a whole lot less ethnic variety." And there we have the other staple, knee-jerk response from a sheep when facts are presented which upset their trendy and revisionist view of history - "Fascist!" Did I in any way say I supported Nazism or agreed with Hitler? No I didn't, so - to be quite frank - you can go shove your blinkered preconceptions up the hole you spoke from you ill-educated moron.

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Re: Yawn

"is that actually what your suggesting? "

If you meant me, no that's not.

What I am suggesting is that the UK went to war to stop Germany from invading Poland, well that sounds nice.

But at the end of the war Poland was still invaded, together with quite a few other countries, and the UK was fine with that.

Really, I am not criticizing them, they had been fighting for years, they couldn't go on, I understand completely, I really do, who cares about central Europe anyway.

What I don't understand, and what I do criticize, is looking back at WWII like some epic battle between good and evil in which good won.

That wasn't it, WWII was Realpolitik through and through and the Allies let Stalin invade and subjugate half of Europe, evil won with the help of the UK and the USA.

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Re: Yawn

"My ground rule regarding all this is ...How far would Nelson Mandela have got if he kicked off now? Nuff said."

Yes, Mandela - that messiah of the right on politically correct establishment who in actual fact did f*ck all sitting in a prison for 27 years until De Klerk decided it was time to end apartheid , mainly due to sanctions crippling the south african economy. But hey, its so much simpler for right-on politically correct liberals to pretend Mandela performed miracles and was virging on sainthood, instead of the reality which was he was an ineffectual marxist terrorist who was nothing more than a empty totem.

But now we have black rule in SA , and with it the usual corruption and slow slide down to the bottom economically and socially that has come with it everywhere else in Africa. Oh happy days.

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Re: Yawn

"We grew up in the cold war and with the IRA. Tell us something we don't know....."

Indeed. The irony of Snowden's hissy fits? They're made from that bastion of autocracy, Russia.

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Re: Yawn

"My parents lived through two world wars - my mother in London during the Blitz. If she were alive now she would be reduced to tears at the betrayal of all they fought for."

My mother is 93, lived through bombing in Birmingham, Manchester and then Bristol, worked in precisely the sort of field in question and understands the importance of meta data. Many people interacting in this debate are behaving like Web 1.0 virgins, as if someone behind a web site is taking note of their every deed, and this is utter bunk. There are not enough people to pay attention to all of the communications in question, it simply is not possible. Analysis of meta data will certainly help uncover links between known suspects and others above and below them in the chain of command, and that is the point to intelligence and security.

"Yes, there's a lot you don't know."

Oh and you know it, right? Spare me the spooky rhetoric, it belongs on the Guardian's pages, along with the Web 1.0 virgins, 9.11 conspiracy theorists, bearded open toed sandal wearers and vegans.

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Re: Yawn

I occasionally open a Facebook account and then 'nuke' it; I use it to track down and communicate with people I've not seen for some while. Facebook and the other social networking devices are insecure; forget the state, the threat comes from your fellow 'digital citizen'.

I've always had difficulty with social networking which seems to me like a perpetual narcisstic round robin. I don't have a blog and I've not had a web site for some 12 years or more. Perhaps I'll have another one soon, but that is as far as I will go. Anyone who communicates freely and without using encryption - unless their communications are bland and valueless - has a problem of their own making.

From very early on in my digital life (now on the 3rd decade of digital communication) I used PGP when I needed to keep the state and others out. I don't knowingly communicate with criminals of any sort, and I don't use the net for anything controversial, nor off line come to that. I read all of the hissy fits and I wonder if people realise that state surveillance in the pre-digital eras of intelligence and security was very common (the practise of steaming open envelopes has a very obvious digital parallel, and the post office was routinely used by the intelligence and security services of this country), and done to intercept and watch a variety of criminals, terrorists and spies from other states or private organisations.

Of course regulation is required, but you dear citizen are every bit as dangerous as that which you claim to abhor. The screaming and weeping that I observe is pure hissy fit, and my response to people is that they should grow up and use encryption, along with a battery of other security devices, too lengthy to list but definitely aired in the Reg time and again. The weeping and rhetoric is, well, pathetic and risible. Now arrow me down, you know that you'll get a kick out of it, and I'll be amused to hell at the evidence of children in the process of a fit of self righteousness.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: battle between good and evil

Great Britain was not under threat, Hitler would have left us alone, for Great Britain it was an unnecessary war.

But I think it was the right thing to do fighting hitler, but it destroyed out empire to do so. it is just a shame as usual the USA was late to the party and in doing so dragged out the war.

And left half of europe to Stalin...

Blame not GB for the problems you see, GB was bankrupted fighting Germany... Blame the USA, they are the ones that had the funds available to continue and defend the rest of europe against Stalin if they needed to...

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Re: battle between good and evil

"Great Britain was not under threat, Hitler would have left us alone, for Great Britain it was an unnecessary war."

Oh right, like he left Poland alone after signing a non aggression pact? Like he left the soviet union alone after signing a pact with then in 1939?

I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume perhaps you come from an alternate universe rather than you just being another in a long line of woolly headed liberal revisionist idiots.

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Re: @Will Godfrey - Yawn

I agree with you - they didn't fight for Privacy; that's a relatively modern jingoism.

They fought to retain *our* liberty from oppressive would-be totalitarian masters. And its that that we are giving away today without a beat, in return for shiny apps and social toys.

It's not *just* privacy, we are also giving up our will and our intellect.

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Re: Yawn

It's been a while since I saw any blue elephants stampeding down my high street.

I guess the surveillance, monitoring and spying on me protects us from those too. Well done GCHQ!

{$Sarcasm}

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Re: Yawn

Also, it is a matter of record (from the capture of Bin Laden) that the "terrorists" did not use the internet, or even permanent mobile phones, for communication for the very reason that they believed such would be intercepted. For this very reason, runners and "trusted men" were used to carry spoken, and rarely written, missives from one "cell" to another.

It is by the intelligence forces own admission that this is they reason, they say, that it took so long to capture Bin Laden and track down other "Significant Targets".

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Re: Boring Bernie Re: Yawn

"Also, it is a matter of record (from the capture of Bin Laden) that the "terrorists" did not use the internet, or even permanent mobile phones, for communication for the very reason that they believed such would be intercepted. For this very reason, runners and "trusted men" were used to carry spoken, and rarely written, missives from one "cell" to another....." Wow, you're so blinded by your paranoia you're even desperate to translate a SUCCESS of the NSA/GCHQ operations into an issue? This massively disrupted their communications and limited Al Quaeda's ability to act, to such an extent that discord broke out amongst the different branches in different countries. Even today in Syria, despite the massive funds thrown at the rebels by the Qataris and the Saudis, Zawahiri is still unable to effectively control his minions and even the Arab press are picking up on it (http://www.albawaba.com/news/al-qaeda-syria-nusra-islamic-state-of-iraq-512999).

".....It is by the intelligence forces own admission that this is they reason, they say, that it took so long to capture Bin Laden and track down other "Significant Targets"." Yeah, it's so bad that we forced them to run and hide, crippling their ability to attack us. I suppose you groupthink it would have been better to have Bin-bag Laden still alive and able to talk to as many Islamists as he liked whenever he liked? Because removing the the NSA and GCHQ from the beat would be just like removing beat Bobbies from towns - just encourage and facilitate criminals. The NSA and GCHQ prevent attacks on us by limiting the enemies' ability to communicate, they are simply not interested in listening to the bleating of the sheeple. Indeed, they probably see it as part of their job to ensure the freedoms that allow the sheeple to bleat so long and hard (and they probably get the bonus of laughing long and hard at the sheep).

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Re: Boring Bernie Yawn

Well, I am very happy that the methods created by the NSA are working so well, as you have explained.

No need for any MORE measures to limit our freedoms then.

P.S. Could you learn to use paragraphs please? It'd make your nonsense easier to read, if not digest.

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Re: Bombastic Bernie Re: Boring Bernie Yawn

"....No need for any MORE measures to limit our freedoms then....." Actually, I'd be most amused if you can post any actual evidence of ANY of your freedoms being limited. No, not your paranoid fantasies but actual and real proof. LOL, that should keep you busy for a while.

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Re: Yawn

You need to brush up on your history

"What I am suggesting is that the UK went to war to stop Germany from invading Poland, well that sounds nice"

I recall Britain went to war because Germany invaded Poland, so as the country was already invaded

"But at the end of the war Poland was still invaded, together with quite a few other countries, and the UK was fine with that"

Doesn't make sense

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:O

"I am still working for the NSA right now."

Hmm how revealing. They say the truth hides in plain sight, well this is that happening here.

"They are the only ones who don’t realize it."

A hat tip to the existence of an inner shadow NSA which even the NSA are unaware of.

On that note I haven't heard anything from David Icke recently which is odd. It's probably nothing, there isn't always a connection behind a coincidence, but thinking people like you and me are now few and far between, they've made sure of that, so we have to be careful. Remember: vigilance not diligence.

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Holy shit! If you rearrange the letters and an 'A' the secret name of the shadow NSA decodes as NASA!

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Dear NomNomNom ..

"On that note I haven't heard anything from David Icke recently which is odd. It's probably nothing, there isn't always a connection behind a coincidence, but thinking people like you and me are now few and far between, they've made sure of that, so we have to be careful. Remember: vigilance not diligence."

Are you trying to discredit Snowden by associating him with David Icke?

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@Don Jefe

Add an extra 'T' as well, and the secret name is revealed as SANTA. They have a very long list and they sure know who's been Naughty or Nice.

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Happy

Re: codeusirae Re: Dear NomNomNom ..

".....Are you trying to discredit Snowden by associating him with David Icke?" Hmmm, I'm not sure even Mad Icke would want to be associated with Snowdope, but I suspect Icke was probably on the C4 list of people "out-there-enough" for their "alternate" (which actually just seems to be bad taste shock-jock) Christmas speech. I can almost imagine the discussions in the C4 Central Committee:

Controller: "OK, who can we get for the Alternate Chrimbo Speech after Ahm-mad-in-a-dinnerjacket?"

Producer1: "Er.... How about David Icke? We could spike his drink and hope he goes off on one about aliens invading and the end of the the World again."

Controller: "Hmmmm, not controversial enough, and half our audience are too young to remember him and the other half will be too stoned or drunk to. Anyway, we need to display our anti-Yank credentials. What do we have scheduled for the rest of Christmas Day?"

Producer2: "Cheap Yank sitcom repeats."

Producer3: "I know - Kim Chung- whatshisface, that guy from North Korea!"

Controller: "OK, fits the anti-Yank agenda and definitely scores high enough on the weirdo scale, but does anyone know if he's available? And cheap."

Producer1: "Could be a problem - last time his dad asked for thirty cases of Courvoisier and total dominion over Wales."

Producer3: "Ian Watkins? He could do a special message for the children?"

Controller: "No, we need someone that is going to at least appear lucid whilst talking complete bollocks, make us look hip'n'trendy, and be really cheap seeing as we blew the budget on Friends....."

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Re: codeusirae Dear NomNomNom ..

I wouldn't be surprised if there was an element of Daily Mail reader baiting by the Guardianistas but I don't think they do it just to demonstrate their edgy credentials.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: codeusirae Dear NomNomNom ..

Nurse! Old man Bryant is out of bed again.

Please increase his medication.

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Re: JustaKOS Re: @Don Jefe

"Add an extra 'T' as well, and the secret name is revealed as SANTA."

By Jove you're onto something here!! Scrap that extra 'A' and rearrange but add a 'Y' and you get "Nasty", which certainly seems to be the NSA'a actual raison d'être, even if they don't actually put "we fuck people over" on the flashy logo. Clearly an Example of Something!

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Re: Anon Cluetard Re: JustaKOS @Don Jefe

"....which certainly seems to be the NSA'a actual raison d'être, even if they don't actually put "we fuck people over" on the flashy logo...." And you have evidence of them f*cking anyone over, or can we assume you are another AC acting on "what you've been told" rather than from verifiable facts?

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Devil

Re: Dear NomNomNom ..

Son of David Icke. Watch out now, NSA lizard's gonna gitchya.

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Re: codeusirae Dear NomNomNom ..

"Producer3: "I know - Kim Chung- whatshisface, that guy from North Korea!""

Now that reminds me of one of the lines from a Brosnan Bond episode. Something along the lines of 'remind me to get a new anger management therapist'.

Merry Humbug to you. I'm sure the rest of the digiterati here will respond nicely too. Heh.

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Re: codeusirae Dear NomNomNom ..

"Nurse! Old man Bryant is out of bed again.

Please increase his medication."

Does your mummy know that you are posting again? Small wonder you are anonymous. Allegedly.

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Anonymous Coward

Why would you rearrange the letters? Unless you just like wasting your own time...

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Re: @Don Jefe

However contrary to Don Jefe post, if you rearrange THESE letters then you do get something worthy of attention.

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Re: codeusirae Dear NomNomNom ..

"Producer3: "I know - Kim Chung- whatshisface, that guy from North Korea!"

Controller: "OK, fits the anti-Yank agenda and definitely scores high enough on the weirdo scale, but does anyone know if he's available? And cheap."

Producer1: "Could be a problem - last time his dad asked for thirty cases of Courvoisier and total dominion over Wales."

I oft don't agree with MB on things, but that was bloody funny. Still chuckling now! :D

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Kids DON'T WANT privacy

I don't know if he's seen Facebook or used snapchat recently, but keeping things private seems the last thing the youth of today want.

But as for mass survelliance, a quick check of the crime clear up rate would suggest that criminality is still, on balance of probability, something you can get away with. That would tell me that for all the "woo, scary" big brother bullsh*t, it mainly doesn't work. So good luck to the NSA etc monotoring every communication, they will never crack every case and have a working pre-crime unit.

For the tin-foil hat brigade, someone once said to me "if you want to keep something a secret, don't tell anyone", Good rule of thumb, that.

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FAIL

Re: Kids DON'T WANT privacy

I think you've missed the point somewhat - since twatbook is so new there are no social cautions about using it - hence people have dived into it willy nilly. As social media matures as a concept so will our treatment of it. I wouldn't be surprised to see managing your online identity taught alongside sex ed and home ec in schools some day.

It's not about a binary choice between using social media and not doing so - it's about giving everyone - kids included - enough information to make a conscious and informed choice over if and how they use it.

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Re: Kids DON'T WANT privacy

"But as for mass survelliance, a quick check of the crime clear up rate would suggest that criminality is still, on balance of probability, something you can get away with."

You are assuming that the object of mass surveillance is preventing crime, rather than facilitating it.

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