back to article UK.gov throws hissy fit after Twitter chokes off snoop firm's access

Twitter has reportedly blocked a third-party firm used by the Home Office from accessing its firehose, prompting the government to complain that the social network is siding with terrorists. In a Home Office press release dutifully churned by the Daily Telegraph and The Sun at bang on 10pm last night, the government whined …

  1. James 51 Silver badge
    Big Brother

    Isn't that the line that is going to be used against journalists who publish embarassing truths about the economy?

    1. WonkoTheSane
      Facepalm

      Nope. UKGov is working on a law allowing them to be charged under the Official Secrets Act.

      https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/02/10/espionage_law_jail_journalists_as_spies/

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  3. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge

    Not to put too fine a point on it...

    But Amber Rudd is a fucking idiot with a lesser understanding of the balances required between utilitarianist freedoms vs oppression of the majority than my teenage daughter.

    Just sayin'...

    1. WonkoTheSane
      Trollface

      Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

      May taught Rudd all she knows...

      1. Elmer Phud Silver badge

        Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

        Shirley it was that global expert on cheese and pork - Liz Truss, our Minister for 'Social Justice (oh, oxymorons abound)

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

        Except the bits about prime numbers.

        They can quite agree whether they should be made illegal or simply removed from the mathematics curriculum. Or whether they exist. Except 2. That one exists.

        Our counting systems were invented in Bablyon^^^^Iraq and that makes them definitely a Jihadist

        long range plane to subvert Western Democracy. Even if they started the dastardly plans before Mohammed. That was just forward planning. See how sophisticated the enemy is.

        1. T. F. M. Reader Silver badge

          Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

          "Our counting systems were invented in Bablyon..."

          Really? We switched to base-60 and I haven't noticed till now?

          Our counting system was actually invented by Indians, i.e., in the Commonwealth for all practical purposes... A few centuries before Islam came about, actually. So perfectly consistent with values, way of life, etc.

          "They can quite agree whether they should be made illegal or simply removed from the mathematics curriculum. Or whether they exist. Except 2. That one exists."

          All this can be easily solved with binary numbers, actually. Just outlaw the least significant bit.

          1. DavCrav Silver badge

            Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

            "Really? We switched to base-60 and I haven't noticed till now?

            Our counting system was actually invented by Indians, i.e., in the Commonwealth for all practical purposes... A few centuries before Islam came about, actually. So perfectly consistent with values, way of life, etc."

            Not really. Babylonians used base 10, they then grouped the tens into 60s. So some hybrid of the two.

          2. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

            Re: Not to put too fine a point on it... @T.F.M Reader

            Well, the Babylonians did invent to concept and means of representing the number zero, which is in important part of our counting systems, and as for base-60, it depends on what you are counting, doesn't it? Unless you have moved onto decimal time, that is.

        2. herman Silver badge

          Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

          Only the prime minister should be allowed to use prime numbers. Downing street 10 is a prime example of such a prime number and all British subjects should immediately cease to use the number 10.

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

          A very fine point. Thank you.

      3. Tom Paine Silver badge

        Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

        Actually... Rudd does have an absolutely /fascinating/ backstory in the form of her (quotes) "business career". Private Eye dropped a couple of gobsmacking pieces a few months ago, in the "In The Back" section that hardly anyone seems to bother to read. Old-school stockmarket or City followers may recognise the name "Jim Slater"...

    2. JimmyPage Silver badge
      Stop

      Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

      But you DID out a fine point on it !!!

      You should have stopped after 7 words.

      1. TRT Silver badge

        Re: You should have stopped after 7 words.

        Or 160 characters.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

      With Rudd,

      Everything is about "hiding places", she's obsessed - even regards Energy Companies... (as Secretary of State for Energy, previously). She's a true mouthpiece of utter conjecture.

      For all the rhetoric, with Energy, she left in the same sorry state she found it, with an utterly useless head of Ofgem.

      To quote the Telegraph:

      "Energy companies that repeatedly offer poor customer service will have "no hiding place", under plans from Amber Rudd, the energy secretary, to strengthen the power of the ombudsman. Ms Rudd used her speech to the Conservative Party conference to announce a crackdown on misbehaving firms and industry-wide customer service problems.

      She said the ombudsman, which investigates complaints, would be given "real teeth" so he could look at systemic issues in the industry, not just individual cases.

      "Where companies have developed a pattern of bad behaviour, they will have no hiding place," she said.

      http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/conservative/11912792/Amber-Rudd-new-powers-to-tackle-repeat-offender-energy-companies.html

      1. Eddy Ito Silver badge

        Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

        It's only a matter of time before she or some equally daft pol demands that all communications devices be equipped with keyloggers that upload to the gov't in real time. 'Cuz tare-wrists are out there.

      2. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

        Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

        People who parrot on about things like 'hiding places' are usually doing so because they understand the motivations and behaviour of others based upon their own 'theory of mind' - in other words, they project their own motivations onto others in order to try to understand them. Thus Rudd's obsession with 'hiding places' indicates that she is probably hiding from the repercussions of something herself, and is desperate to not be found out. I wonder what her 'dirty little secret' could be?

    4. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Gimp

      "Amber Rudd..a fucking idiot..lesser understanding of the balances required..my teenage daughter.

      Much like the previous 9 or so Home Secretaries.

      All champions of the Snoopers Charter in its current or previous forms.

      It seems the only properly functioning section of the Home Office is it's PR department.

    5. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

      But Amber Rudd is a fucking idiot with a lesser understanding of the balances required between utilitarianist freedoms vs oppression of the majority than my teenage daughter.

      Then perhaps they should swap places for a year. Rudd can go back to school and hopefully pay attention this time, while your lass can go into government and be a distinct improvement to it from day one.

    6. VanguardG

      Re: Not to put too fine a point on it...

      Your teenage daughter probably actually understands social media like Twitter. At least over here, people get addicted to that crap, probably much the same there.

      One woman in her 30's actually robbed a bank, WHILE CHATTING ON HER CELL PHONE. Twice, three days apart. Police took her into custody the day after her second "unauthorized funds withdrawal".

  4. sebt
    Pint

    depressing...

    I don't know what depresses me most.

    - The idiots who are in Government

    - The idiots who uncritically spam out their PR

    - The idiots who read it

    - The idiots who still vote for them.

    Rudd's "siding with the terrorists" crap raises an interesting question. If I had to choose to side with the terrorists or with Rudd (as her false dichotomy implies), which one would I choose? Tough one...

    Actually, the answer to this conundrum came quicker than I thought. I can't be arsed to side with either of them. Let them sort out their differences, unarmed, in a cage. While I have a beer.

    1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: depressing...

      If it helps any, neither side wants you to drink beer.

    2. Elmer Phud Silver badge

      Re: depressing...

      'Terrorists' are even much, much better at wielding a mouse than Rudd.

    3. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: depressing...

      Sheesh, anyone would think that there is an election just around the corner. Oh wait... Yep, there is.

      Be prepared for more of this before polling day.

      The incumbents have gotta look tough on terrorists because Jeremy's pals with a lot of freedom fighters (nee terrorists with a left wing bias)

      Old Trots never truly die that just wither away singing 'the red flag'.

    4. macjules Silver badge

      Re: depressing...

      I find that red wine helps. After one glass politics tends to look a bit less depressing. After the bottle I could not care less.

      1. Red Bren
        Pint

        Re: depressing...

        We'll keep the red wine flowing here...

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: depressing...

      @sebt,

      "Actually, the answer to this conundrum came quicker than I thought. I can't be arsed to side with either of them. Let them sort out their differences, unarmed, in a cage. While I have a beer."

      Are you some sort of naive berk?

      It's not a matter you siding with terrorism or the government. You don't choose your terrorist, they do the choosing and they really aren't too fussy. They would quite happily choose you. Ask a Parisian.

      On the other hand, you aren't having to live with a government that's actively trying to kill you. Count yourself lucky. Not everyone has that privilege. Better still their job is, in part, to keep you alive and stop someone else killing you. I strongly suspect they have more experience in this kind of thing than you do, so perhaps they know what they're talking about? You clearly don't.

      You even get a say in choosing the government. If you don't like this one, try persuading everyone to vote for one that suits your world view in the general election. If you want them to stop doing these things then fine, just don't go complaining about it if something changes your mind. I'm sure with comments like yours I suspect that they sometimes wonder why they bother seeking to preserve your existence on this planet.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: depressing...

        Grew up in Belfast with terrorists trying to kill me.

        The ones nominally targeting me were the ones supported/funded by the British government (as opposed to one supported/funded by the Irish and Americans)

        Then one lot blew up a bit of London and worryingly it looked like it could affect the banks, so suddenly there are no terrorists just a bunch of "statesmen" being invited to meet Prince Charles

        1. Rich 11 Silver badge

          Re: depressing...

          just a bunch of "statesmen" being invited to meet Prince Charles

          That was quite a clever ploy, though. If they'd reverted to type at that meeting, we wouldn't have lost anything.

      2. Afernie

        Re: depressing...

        "I'm sure with comments like yours I suspect that they sometimes wonder why they bother seeking to preserve your existence on this planet."

        Amber.. is that you? I didn't think you knew how to work these computer contraptions with the hash thingies.

      3. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

        Re: depressing...

        On the other hand, you aren't having to live with a government that's actively trying to kill you. Count yourself lucky.

        Unless of course, you are poor, or disabled, or an NHS nurse, in which case they are trying to starve you out.

  5. jonha

    Rudd is just a fast learner: those who don't do my bidding must be terrorists. Just look at the US, Turkey, Israel... anyone "misbehaving" gets their T-moniker.

  6. James 51 Silver badge

    Mr. Python had a sketch about witches and ducks. I think they've taken the logic from this scene and applied it as required.

    1. Tom 7 Silver badge

      Re Mr. Python

      But the pebbles were used as hygrometers in the sketch. Here they are used as brains.

      1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

        Re: Re Mr. Python

        So the government is filled with Gumbys?

        1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

          Re: Re Mr. Python

          Oblig

          "Oh.... My brain hurts"

          sorry couldn't resist.

          1. Geoffrey W Silver badge

            Re: Re Mr. Python

            RE: "My brain hurts"

            Probly coz you've been eating squirrels. I mean, "'I' dont eat squirrels, do I"

        2. hplasm Silver badge
          Unhappy

          Re: Re Mr. Python

          "So the government is filled with Gumbys?"

          Yes- oddly true, whoever gets in.

    2. Elmer Phud Silver badge

      python and witches

      yeah but, no but, yeah but - I cannot see any of our current coven actually owning up that they have screwed up big time or know completely bugger all.

      No 'It's a fair cop' from this lot.

    3. g e

      With the exception

      That she won't "Get better"

  7. Your alien overlord - fear me

    I think I should start an Indigogo campaign to get enough money so I can buy Twitter. Then I'd just close it down. It just facilitates too much trouble in the world.

    1. Elmer Phud Silver badge

      Aaaaaaand what would replace it, oh worthy overlord?

      FB Live?

      1. Jack of Shadows Silver badge

        Mastodon.social

      2. Rich 11 Silver badge

        People talking to each other like normal.

  8. Dan 55 Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    They don't want to go after terrorists, they want to go after tourists

    Watch: Theresa May’s Brexit blunder

    Makes perfect sense that they want to be able to scan social media for holiday pics if Britain is to lead the world in preventing tourism.

    1. twellys

      Re: They don't want to go after terrorists, they want to go after tourists

      Classic!

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: They don't want to go after terrorists, they want to go after tourists

      If you live in an area that attracts tourists you come to regard the two words as interchangeable.

      (OK they're not. Interchangeable is different word.)

  9. Roger B

    Anyone know where the other parties stand on this issue?

    1. Chronos Silver badge

      Pointless question. It's the Sir Humphreys who push this agenda, which is why it keeps coming back regardless of who wins in the general erection.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      The Lib-Dems have often taken a stand against government encroachment on privacy. In the coalition they put the dampers on what May is now pushing through unfettered.

      Greens may also take that line.

      UKIP would probably support the May line in spades.

      Labour would be just as bad as May - judging by their laws passed, or attempted, in the last Labour Government and the apparently authoritarian attitude of the current power elite.

      SNP - should be liberal - but not so sure about them in practice..

      1. Rich 11 Silver badge

        UKIP would probably support the May line in spades.

        And queue up to polish her jackboots.

  10. Tony S

    It's worth noting that Amber Rudd was one of the MPs that was named in the election fraud matter. It appears that she will be forced to debate the matter. It will be interesting to see how that turns out.

    https://www.thecanary.co/2017/04/24/the-home-secretary-just-got-some-really-bad-news-about-tory-election-fraud/

    It's also worth noting that at the last election, she only won by 4,796 votes in a 68% turnout; it wouldn't take a great deal to see her lose her seat in June.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's a good job there were no terrorists before twitter or she would have a hard time explaining why she is trying to catch terrorists on a 160 character blogging bag of shite where users are encouraged to spout the most inane drivel in an attempt to make themselves popular to people that really don't give a shit anyway.

    This has nothing to do with terrorists it's about control of information to control opinion to ultimately control the masses and force them into the already planned totalitarian wet dream where those that disagree will be isolated and destroyed or forced to accept the new status quo through fear and intimidation.

    I think I'll have soup for tea today.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  12. 45RPM Silver badge

    I actually wrote to Mrs May about the issue of security and encryption - and I got a reply stating that I was wrong, and that she was taking advice from the head of GCHQ (at the time Robert Hannigan) who was, by virtue of his position, right.

    My opinion, shared with many here on this august red-top website, is that we shouldn’t weaken encryption and security since, if we do, we’d be making it easier for the badmash to commit their criminal acts, without making it any easier for the security services to catch the badmash (since they’d just roll their own, uncompromised, encrypted communication tools)

    My opinion on Robert Hannigan is that he’s undoubtedly a very good classicist (having studied that subject at Wadham and Heythrop), but that isn’t normally a recognised discipline for developing IT expertise.

    My opinion on Theresa May isn’t suitable for publication on this fine, family friendly, forum - suffice it to say that anyone who takes advice from a classicist on matters digital, makes besties with Tronald Dump, or fucks around with Brexit isn’t the smartest peanut in the turd.

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge
      Big Brother

      If TM thinks so highly of his opinion, she wouldn't mind putting him in front of a bunch of security techs to address their concerns would she?

      I have a very strong feeling she knows full well he doesn't know what he's talking about, but since he is telling her what she wants to hear everyone else can eff off.

    2. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

      "My opinion on Robert Hannigan is that he’s undoubtedly a very good classicist "

      But everybody knows classics is the degree for top civil servants just as PPE is for politicians. Because not knowing anything that happened after the 1st century AD is an obvious qualification for running a modern state. It means you're not prejudiced by facts, and therefore are well suited to advise people who did PPE and so avoid bias by not being any kind of expert in anything.

      1. 45RPM Silver badge

        @Voyna I mor

        Shit. You're right. He's Sir Humphrey and I hadn't even noticed.

        So which sort of chair do you think TM has?

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I've said it before and I'll say it again.

      These people are fully aware of what they will and won't get from breaking encryption.

      They don't want terrorists they want access to everyone. If they catch or stop a few terrorists then that's great for them but I doubt many are stupid enough to continue to use something that puts them at risk of being caught. Do they still use mobiles to communicate on open lines? Nah, that ship sailed a long time ago.

      Why do they want this access? Who knows exactly but one could surmise a few uncomfortable possibilities, Totalitarian government, Protecting their own interests and positions, subvert the masses and influence them to their own ends or use it to identify people who are a danger to them, e.g. A journalists source.

    4. Red Bren
      Happy

      Have an upvote

      Just for gratuitous swearing in the same paragraph that describes El Reg as "Family Friendly"

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Dataminr is not the firm that had its access to Twitter's firehose cut off

    Happy, are you? Because what? Becasue you know? Because they told you so? Because you were told to say so? Or just "Because"?

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Govt: For the 10,000th time, we only snoop on T's & P's

    But since that doesn't actually work, we might as well regroup and snoop instead by "Using Twitter's Public APIs or data products to track or profile protesters and activists is absolutely unacceptable and prohibited"..... 5-eyes / UK / USA Govts are perpetual conniving cowards and liars....

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    what is rudd

    everyone is speaking about? Pls txt terro

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Amber Rudd

    Fucking donkey. When will we get a live feed from her toilet in lieu of us being spied on.

    What are you doing in there Amber? If you have nothing to hide you have nothing to fear.

    Why does this loathesome wench think that the core of the terror bastards activities stems from social media?

    Has she not worked out that they're not organised like a country club. Its a loose collective of radicalised idiots. They're not plotting and scheming they're just radicalising people and throwing enough shit til some sticks.

    These people aren't just caddish bounders making fisticuffs on Twitter.

    Radicalisation is transferred over the sneaker net.

  17. fidodogbreath Silver badge

    You keep using that word...

    insisting that Rudd meant to say "hashing" (as in cryptography)..."

    Said with a straight face, no doubt, because the mouthpiece didn't understand it either.

    ...and not hashtags, which are used on Twitter as a means of making tweets easily searchable by topic.

    "Why can't those awful computer people just use words normally? Honestly, who ever heard of birdies twittering about hash? And what does any of that have to do with searching crypts? They seem to find this all very funny, but I think it's dreadful."

  18. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    With an election coming up getting into an argument with social media might not be the brightest idea. They have a more direct line to the electorate than any politician. But then, we don't expect the brightest ideas from Amber Rudd.

    1. Voyna i Mor Silver badge

      Re: You keep using that word...

      "They seem to find this all very funny, but I think it's dreadful.""

      ....."so find out what it is they're actually doing and put a stop to it.

  19. scrubber

    Would you please

    Stop looking over my shoulder when I type...

  20. zen1

    and we all know social "justice" is completely infallible

  21. Crazy Operations Guy Silver badge

    Has spying actually made anyone any safer?

    I have yet to hear a single attack stopped by intelligence gathered by the intelligence agencies. If they did stop one, wouldn't they be announcing it from the roof-tops? Wouldn't it be the only thing they ever say? But, no, all we hear is "We need more data!" and "Anyone that doesn't give us more data must be a communist / terrorist"

    All the recent terror attacks have been lone-wolf affairs by people that haven't really been given any more orders from Daesh than "We hate this list of countries and would love it if someone were to attack it". The various terrorist groups have moved to a completely de-centralized command structure where the people in control are just putting out instruction guides on how to carry out attacks and a guides on selecting targets based on the goals of those in command (Which is 'make the West scared of everyone').

    Really, the better option would be to set up community programs where people safe turning in their relatives that they are worried might commit an act of terrorism, or at least not torturing people even slightly related to a terrorist into some inhuman secret prison where they'll never be heard from again. But then something like would require politicians acknowledging that war is not as simple as good guys vs bad guys but rather intensely complex with many, many different sides. Doing so would lose them votes because nothing invigorates the electorate like a big bad evil to fight against.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Has spying actually made anyone any safer?

      "If they did stop one, wouldn't they be announcing it from the roof-tops?"

      Actually, no, not in any detail because that would enable opponents to understand where they were going wrong. The best they can do is make unverifiable statements about how many attacks they claim to have prevented. Because such statements are unverifiable in order to be believed the intelligence services have to be trusted and there they have a problem. Trust and its opposite, mistrust tend to be mutual. They act as if they don't trust us therefore we don't tend to trust or, in consequence, believe them.

      "All the recent terror attacks have been lone-wolf affairs"

      And yet, after the event, it seems that the perpetrators were previously known. It then raises the question of whether focussing attention on people they previously knew about would be more productive than trying to spy on the populace at large.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Flameout...

    Every day I read this site and become more depressed with the calibre of people in this, supposedly educated industry. First let me be clear that I don't agree with the large scale interception of all and sundry, however, I take exception with the attitudes of a large portion of the commentards to articles like this.

    Basically, the general consensus is:

    * The government is not allowed to use any of the tools/APIs that the likes of Facebook, Google, Twatter, WhatsApp, etc. provide for the purposes of eliciting information from feeds on their networks.

    * Anyone else is allowed to, including but not limited to, freedom fighters, hackers, newspapers, journalists etc. These people only have one agenda and that is the greater good of humankind.

    So public is only public if you're not the Government, and the only people who can do data mining are the very people who own your data and use it to sell you to advertisers, and anyone else who they deem fit - remember, it's their T&C's. All you cardigan and slipper wearing, pipe smokers, along with the millennial do gooders had better watch out. In the end, there is a compromise to be had somewhere because there are times when public information is exactly that - I can't undo this post, and if it gets published then I have no control of what or who reads it and when. Unless it gets picked up by a government of course then I have lots of rights.

    As I write this rant I've realised I am running out of energy. It's pointless. Everyone has already bought into the Snowdon Factor even though 70% of what he says is bollocks to those who really understand the technology. It is the right of every human being to have complete privacy, even when they publicly publish inflamatory or inciteful prose because public is only public under certain conditions. It's barking mad Time to switch newspaper subscription to The Cardigan and join in.

    1. cantankerous swineherd Silver badge

      Re: Flameout...

      yet another AC complaining about privacy.

      some people just don't get it.

      -1

    2. sebt
      Meh

      Re: Flameout...

      The trouble is that your argument (leaving out your frustration) is a nuanced argument, when this Government (and governments in general these days) only deals in moronic absolutes.

      "You're helping terrorists" is not exactly a nuanced argument. You don't make that argument, but Amber Rudd does. I think you're wrong in imagining that commentards want absolute freedom for commercial companies to use datafeeds for mining, but to absolutely prohibit it when it's government doing it.

      My view, for instance, is that I hate datamining in general, whoever does it (barring, perhaps, researchers bound by a code of research ethics). I wish commercial companies didn't do it either. But there is a difference between commercial and government mining: the worst commercial companies can do with my data is try to sell me more spurious crap. A government can use my data to lock me up, equally spuriously.

      And I believe that governments should be able to access whatever data they need to investigate a particular crime or suspect - with a court order. That's not what Rudd is implying - she wants everything.

      The frustration which you in turn get frustrated by comes from the fact that idiot statements like Rudd's (though she's hardly the only one) make it even less possible for the more nuanced arguments to even get off the ground.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Flameout...

        "And I believe that governments should be able to access whatever data they need to investigate a particular crime or suspect - with a court order. "

        But not to the extent that encryption is deliberately compromised - "just in case". Nor should ISPs store your browse accesses - "just in case" they are requested later even with a court order.

        One of the first actions of authoritarian governments is to attempt to compromise the independence of the judiciary - to ensure they will rubber stamp whatever is requested. See Erdoğan, Trump, May.

    3. Afernie

      Re: Flameout...

      "Everyone has already bought into the Snowdon Factor even though 70% of what he says is bollocks to those who really understand the technology. "

      Lord Snowdon? Who knew he was in the intelligence data mining field? Or alive.

  23. Andrew Jones 2

    "The British government has made no secret of its desire to spy on everyone everywhere using social media, even though its in-house knowledge of technology is embarrassingly dire."

    Should read "....desire to spy on everyone everywhere (excluding members of Parliament, who are exempt from being profiled and / or tracked, because they added that clause in to the bill)....."

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ruddy Hell

    Are British MPs trying to out-looney Australian Senators?

    Tin foil stocks: UP!

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      "excluding members of Parliament, who are exempt from being profiled and / or tracked, because they added that clause in to the bill"

      You think that's wrong?

      Consider this. You have some issue which you wish to take up with your local MP. You regard it as confidential. How can it be confidential unless the MPs communications are confidential. That exemption protects you.

      The problem isn't that MPs are exempt, it's that there's something for them to be exempt from.

      1. Andrew Jones 2

        ..... but ......

        it's ONLY the MP side of things that's confidential - the message I sent to the MP is fully readable because MY connection is not private - so that argument falls over.

  25. Charlie Clark Silver badge
    Flame

    Public service announcement

    Today at 3 PM I and some mates of mine will be robbing the bank in Trumpton. Party round at Miss Lovelace's after.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Trollface

    >Government

    >Terrorists.

    >"Social Justice"

    I'll take 3 scourges that plague the free world for 100

  27. Velv Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    We are happy to make clear that Dataminr is not the firm that had its access to Twitter's firehose cut off.

    So Dataminr are still spying on the public then?

  28. Bernard M. Orwell Silver badge

    Amber Rudd

    Every time I see that name, I can't help but want to grab a piece of rabbit fur to see what happens.

    Geek points given for getting the gaming reference. Nerd points given for the science reference.

    Wonder if her parents were geeks or nerds....?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Amber Rudd

      Does she have a sister called Ebony?

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