Big Brother Coming to the UK?

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by Mrs Figg on Sun May 11, 2014 6:48 pm

talking of technology, he has a point. For someone of my generation, the stone age before mobile phones, video games and texting, its strange how much we have changed, tech is great, but 'lets not forget to live', as Dumbledore said to Harry in front of the Mirror of Erised

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Sun May 11, 2014 6:57 pm

Too negative for my tastes.
He is after all making his point using technology, shared by technology, and then shared by you on a forum which exists on its own sense of community.

The kids I know, my neighbours, my nieces, they go to the swing parks, they go out in the countryside, they go to horse riding, they go to play parks.
I would say kids activities are too organised these days, to monitored rather than just opening the door and letting them go out and play, but I would not say the kids I know are out less, or define themselves through social media.

Maybe it becomes more an issue in teenage years.

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by Mrs Figg on Sun May 11, 2014 7:06 pm

I think his message is a very positive one. poetic too.
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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by Orwell on Tue May 13, 2014 10:24 am

poetic

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by halfwise on Tue May 13, 2014 4:12 pm

What are you doing on a thread about Big Brother, Orwell?  Suspect 

Frontline, currently the best investigative news program on the planet (if anyone has other candidates for such a series, let me know), is running two 2-hour programs on America's surveillance program, starting tonight.  A description with teaser trailer is here:

http://news.yahoo.com/spying-on-millions-of-americans-living-in-the--united-states-of-secrets-183952032.html

The show should be available online after the broadcast on the website.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/view/

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by Amarië on Tue May 13, 2014 4:34 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:Too negative for my tastes.
He is after all making his point using technology, shared by technology, and then shared by you on a forum which exists on its own sense of community.

The kids I know, my neighbours, my nieces, they go to the swing parks, they go out in the countryside, they go to horse riding, they go to play parks.
I would say kids activities are too organised these days, to monitored rather than just opening the door and letting them go out and play, but I would not say the kids I know are out less, or define themselves through social media.

Maybe it becomes more an issue in teenage years.

I too had to grin at the fact that this is a man who looks like he's a CGI character, making you stare at the screen for 5 minutes before you click like and post it on your wall so others can waste 5 minutes. I know I spend too much time online, but this won't change a thing for me. Though it might make a mom cut the power to the game and chase her kids outside that day.

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by Mrs Figg on Tue May 13, 2014 4:59 pm

people are taking his message as some kind of rebuke, its just saying we shouldnt spend 24/7 with our noses stuck to some computer screen or other, a lot of kids spend too much time on their arses thats why theres a lot of fat kids, I dont think its directed at adults, we can choose to do what the heck we like, and have known a world before tech took over, its the younger generations who communicate through texting etc that need to get out and look up. dont see the problem with that.

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by halfwise on Wed May 14, 2014 4:05 am

Well, saw the first half (two hours) of the Frontline story about the NSA collecting data on US citizens. Quite an amazing story, and as usual Frontline gained extended interviews with all key players except the very top (Bush, Cheney, Obama and a few key advisors).

Two things struck me most.
First, at the beginning it was secret even within the NSA.
Second, as people began to learn about it inside the NSA, there was considerable anguish, which comes through in interviews even a decade later. This makes me very proud. There were resignations and threatened resignations not just within the NSA but in the justice department which had oversight until the Bush administration squirmed through a loophole in the patriot act.

People cared deeply and fought against it long before Snowden, but the stories which did get out never gained traction with the public, largely due to skillful spin control aided by the fact that most people never actually read articles in the New York Times or Baltimore Sun.

Anyway, it's a truly fascinating and highly detailed story. I took notes, but I think those who are truly interested should go to the Frontline site as it becomes posted.

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Wed May 14, 2014 4:11 am

I think putting aside all other considerations, the manner in which all of this has been handled has been a PR disaster.
If any lessons are learnt maybe it will be thats a bad idea in a democracy to set up secret law bypassing courts and not tell anyone until it leaks.

Or maybe they just need to be better at keeping secrets.

Or to paraphrase Sir Humphrey "its not what the government does that upsets people, its finding out what the government does that upsets people."

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by halfwise on Wed May 14, 2014 1:16 pm

It was interesting that the director of the NSA at the time (who incredibly gave extensive interviews to Frontline) told his wife the night he was given the order by the White House that this was a story that would eventually get out, and when it did it would be very messy. Yet he went through with it unapologetically because he felt it was the best way to protect the nation.

Before 911 even happened there was code written that would do exactly what the current program does, except that it would automatically encrypt the identities of American citizens. The encryption could only be unlocked presumably with court authority.

It was never implemented until 911, at which time the encryption routine was stripped out. The original code writers were not involved, and when they eventually learned of it discussed several options, including resigning as a group and/or going public. Their original boss at the time eventually went public with declassified information, after which the information was reclassified and he and all the rest were arrested for distributing classified information! The charges had to be dropped of course, but all either resigned or lost their jobs in the process.

Before this documentary I wasn't sure that Snowden really had to essentially sacrifice his life to get the story out. Now seeing how many people sacrificed their careers to get the story out without causing much of a stir it's clear that Snowden was something of a genius to see that a big splash had to be made to get the public's attention.

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by Pettytyrant101 on Wed May 14, 2014 4:25 pm

I wonder if when he considered it would be 'very messy' if he was just thinking domestic politics, or if he was thinking international too.

As it seems to me that the damage and free leverage given to other countries by the revelation America was spying on everyone is far greater than anything likely to be actually gained by the program.

I remember shortly after the Snowden stuff about them bugging Chancellor Merkel came out a German ambassador said it would be the beginning of the end of US influence because you cannot trust America, not even when you are their ally.

Now there is some hypocrisy there, everyone spies, but I think the scale and those targeted- and getting caught doing it- really has caused reputational and practical damage to US influence abroad.

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by halfwise on Wed May 21, 2014 3:10 am

Frontline has the first two hours of "State of Secrets" up online.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/

Highly recommended.

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Re: Big Brother Coming to the UK?

Post by halfwise on Wed May 21, 2014 3:57 am

The third and final hour was also very interesting, mainly about how private companies collect information for advertising purposes, and how the NSA can tap into this. Gmail is actually the worst offender, for its whole purpose was to scrape email for information to target advertisement. Facebook of course is an NSA wet dream, but only an idiot would expect any privacy there.

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