Government Surveillance

Do you have strong feelings about government surveillance?  Ever since the release of information about government surveillance by Edward Snowden, I feel that the nature of the relationship of trust between governments and their citizens has changed.

It’s thrown into sharp relief the uneasy balance between citizens’ right to privacy, and governments’ obligations to provide security to their citizens.

InternetNZ is drafting a paper formulating a position on this as the kaitiaki or guardians of the Internet in New Zealand, and have issued a background paper which I would encourage you to read. If you’re a member of InternetNZ you can comment on the members-discuss email list.  If you’re not a member, I would encourage you to join InternetNZ.  And if you don’t want to join or comment yourself, please contact me directly either in the comments below or on the contact form so I can ensure that your voice is heard.

1 Comment

  1. I have extremely serious concerns about the extent of government involvement in society, the power of government, and lack of accountability when politicians / bureaucrats transgress their mandates. I am also concerned about the blurring between government and big business in wielding power enabled through government surveillance (in the name of counter terrorism). Snowden has provided hard evidence of this. While I agree with the sentiment of the internetnz paper – I hear Lou Gerstner voice in the back of my head “prizes are for building ark’s; not for predicting rain”. The question continually runing through my mind is “How can this situation be changed?”. I do not see the IntenetNZ Paper changing anything; although I agree it is necessary.

    In Gleick’s biography of Feynman he talks about the intellectual energy Feynman and his (then) girlfriend put into encrypting their love letters (whilst isolated on the Manhattan Project) so the FBI and CIA could not understand them – this is clearly an EDGE SOLUTION with NO CENTRALISED TRUST. I wonder if the way going forwards is FOSS frameworks in the heart of the internet securely and transparently delegating trust to the EDGE. Perhaps realising there never was or will be a central body worthy of absolute trust. I ponder the social benefit (and commercial opportunity) of a new approach – but since I’m over committed on getting my latest pet project to market; I am afraid I do not put enough time into thinking about this beyond meditation time “Waiting for Ed” when passing through airports 8~) Please do leave my email on your newsletters on this subject. I may become inspired one day soon!!!!

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