Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 15th Apr 2012 13:05 UTC
Internet & Networking "Unfortunately, Cameron's declaration that the 'free flow of information' can sometimes be a problem, then an aberration, seems to have turned into a pillar of the UK government's 2012 agenda. Despite declaring early on in his term that internet freedom should be respected 'in Tahrir Square as much as Trafalgar Square', his government is now considering a series of laws that would dramatically restrict online privacy and freedom of speech." The United Kingdom's crippling nanny state culture reaches the web. A country in deep financial problems, facing pervasise social unrest, censors the web to prevent riots. Sure Cameron, make it so.
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bad journalism!
by Adurbe on Sun 15th Apr 2012 13:58 UTC
Adurbe
Member since:
2005-07-06

Aljazeera are fairly well known here in the UK for having a very strong bias when it comes to news. In this particular case, it was simply bad journalism.

A few points to consider that it appears to have glossed over.

1. Under the current proposals (they are still just that) these powers can only be used if there is a perceived threat from that individual against the state or the people

2. The intention of the bill is to update what the intelligence services have access to. Currently these powers exist already for phone calls. Clearly this is no longer the main means of communication used by those who wish to commit crimes.

3. Where a BIG argument is taking place is who decides on when these powers can be used. The Judiciary or Parliament.

4. (this is a personal one) I find it odd that we think its ok for for Google to read our emails for the purpose of adverts. But not the intelligence services to protect lives...

Reply Score: 2

RE: bad journalism!
by kragil on Sun 15th Apr 2012 14:12 in reply to "bad journalism! "
kragil Member since:
2006-01-04

EVERYBODY (even criminals) should have the right for privacy.
Police states do not work(tm)
In a democracy you have to live with the fact that some criminals run free. That is the price of freedom. Everybody who thinks otherwise needs to get his brain checked.
The alternative is criminalizing innocent people, which must an _absolute_ no-go in a real democracy.

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE[2]: bad journalism!
by Adurbe on Sun 15th Apr 2012 14:43 in reply to "RE: bad journalism! "
Adurbe Member since:
2005-07-06

I in part agree with you, but surely you concede that there has to be a balance?

For example, if someone is going online and purchasing all the components needed to make a large amount of explosives, do you not think it is reasonable for the state (police) to be able to investigate them in order to establish their intentions/targets? They would of course then invade the persons privacy should they need to search the persons home if needed. I think this is a concession that is acceptable in Any democracy.

The person would then go through the courts as normal with the presumption of innocence until guilt is proven

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: bad journalism!
by BluenoseJake on Sun 15th Apr 2012 22:44 in reply to "RE: bad journalism! "
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

We've never seen a police state with the massive amount of surveillance and technology at the governments disposal before right now, we don't know what the outcome will be.

Rest assured however, it'll most likely suck.

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE: bad journalism!
by cfgr on Sun 15th Apr 2012 15:05 in reply to "bad journalism! "
cfgr Member since:
2009-07-18

Aljazeera are fairly well known here in the UK for having a very strong bias when it comes to news. In this particular case, it was simply bad journalism.

The article is full of citations to other news sources.

1. Under the current proposals (they are still just that) these powers can only be used if there is a perceived threat from that individual against the state or the people

Who defines what is a perceived threat and what not? That's what the warrant is for. There is no reason to take that away other than wanting to cut corners at a huge cost for liberty and modern civilisation.

2. The intention of the bill is to update what the intelligence services have access to. Currently these powers exist already for phone calls. Clearly this is no longer the main means of communication used by those who wish to commit crimes.

Those powers exist with court orders. They can legally get all the information they need in case of terrorism investigations. There is no need to throw judicial oversight out the window here. Read the article.

3. Where a BIG argument is taking place is who decides on when these powers can be used. The Judiciary or Parliament.

Ever heard of separation of powers? The executive branch does the investigation, the judicial branch does oversight by making sure the law is followed or the case gets thrown out. If you give all power to one branch, you might as well go for a totalitarian government. The three branches of government exist for a good reason, and it worked out fine during the IRA era when attacks on British soil were frequent and real, so why wouldn't it now?

4. (this is a personal one) I find it odd that we think its ok for for Google to read our emails for the purpose of adverts. But not the intelligence services to protect lives...

I signed up with Google, not the government. If I think the government should know something, I'll let them know myself. Furthermore, Google can't jail you and has a much cleaner track record than the government. Have you even read the part about the libel laws in the article? Have you even looked at the article or did you just self-censor once you noticed Al Jazeera in the URL?

Edited 2012-04-15 15:11 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 12

RE[2]: bad journalism!
by Adurbe on Sun 15th Apr 2012 16:58 in reply to "RE: bad journalism! "
Adurbe Member since:
2005-07-06

I did read the article, but I have also read the draft bill (its only 30 pages thus far) which is why I know it was reported upon badly.

http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/publications/about-us/legislation/etpi...

Of particular note, please read the section on the powers of the Secretary of State and the extension this bill will provide. And indeed on where the separation of powers actually occur under the UK's parliamentary democracy as you seem to have confused where that line is.

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE: bad journalism!
by Fergy on Mon 16th Apr 2012 13:20 in reply to "bad journalism! "
Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

1. Under the current proposals (they are still just that) these powers can only be used if there is a perceived threat from that individual against the state or the people
This means that when they want to use the power they can without any evidence.
2. The intention of the bill is to update what the intelligence services have access to. Currently these powers exist already for phone calls. Clearly this is no longer the main means of communication used by those who wish to commit crimes.

Clarifying an old law could still be a good opportunity to change it for the better.
3. Where a BIG argument is taking place is who decides on when these powers can be used. The Judiciary or Parliament.

I don't have the feeling parliament is held accountable ever.

4. (this is a personal one) I find it odd that we think its ok for for Google to read our emails for the purpose of adverts. But not the intelligence services to protect lives...

Google gives you the choice. If the government also gives you this choice they should be treated equal. But criminals would opt-out of course so what is the point again?

Reply Parent Score: 2