CISPA is not dead! It's coming back -- get ready!

Evan from Fight for the Future sez, "All of your phone calls, emails, petition signatures, and tweets are working. The privacy-killing back-from-the-dead zombie bill CISPA is a bit stalled in the Senate, with over $605 million in lobbying spent on it already, it's bound to be back to haunt us in some form soon. So we made an infographic to get everyone up to speed. This Spring, we'll be organizing the largest online privacy protest in history, to send this bill back where it belongs. Join us?"


  1. These flies keep flying in and bothering everyone, we have take the time to swat them down, and just as we’re getting set to move onto other things, back come more flies.

    What would it look like to, I don’t know, maybe repair the screen door?

    1.  It’s not like Democrats ever propose or support legislation designed to restrict or remove online rights and privacy, right?
      Oh, wait…

    2. In case you’re not joking (even the most absurd ideas are proposed in earnest by somebody), have a look at who Obama is about to appoint head of the FCC…

  2. ENOUGH with this Right – Left, Republican – Democrat BS!!!!! I am SICK of seeing Americans fighting AMONG EACH OTHER, while the Government, regardless of political affiliation, continues to take OUR liberties away. Unless Americans can break free from this FALSE type of thinking, the US is DOOMED. Reagen, Bush Sr., and Bush Jr. did the EXACT same things that Clinton and Obama did, and are currently doing, to destroy the freedom of American citizens. Want proof? Who was in office during Waco, the 1993 WTC bombiing, and Oklahoma City? A Democrat. Who was in office during 911 and Patriot(s) Act I and II? A Republican. STOP IT ALREADY!!!!!

    1. That’s a lot of shouting.  Also, you seem to have just stumbled in here.  We’re a fairly jaded lot.  Read the other comments, most of us realize that R and D are two sides of the same fascist coin.  

  3. The fact is, NEITHER the Republicans OR the Democrats are in CONTROL of this country. The Megabanks, the Multinational corporations, the Companies the make up the military-industrial complex – THEY are the ones in control. Doesn’t matter who does their bidding – Reublican or Democrat, Conservative or Liberal. Time to STOP this in-fighting, like people fighting over who is rooting for the better football team, and seriously take a minute to THINK about what you are saying when you spew this ABSOLUTELY FALSE left- right paradigm.

  4. I’ll admit to this: CISPA has the right intentions in mind. However, the methods that CISPA warrants are extremely unconstitutional. Until the bill can be reformed to the point that privacy is still protected (which more than likely will never happen, if even possible), there is no option but to shelf and burn this bill.
    Unfortunately, the US has deteriorated into an oligarchy run by mega corporations. It’s just a matter of time until they get whatever they want. If CISPA is shelved again, the corporations will just keep whining to Congress until it is put back on the table. It’s a vicious cycle and it won’t stop for a long time. Not to mention how long it will take to reverse the damage done by this generation of politicians… Hell, I’m not even 20 years old at the moment but I’m sure I’ll be long dead by the time the US is back on the right track.

    1.  “I’ll admit to this: CISPA has the right intentions in mind”.

      What are those intentions?  I have no clue what they are trying to do with this legislation, other than to protect the profits of big companies.

  5. Honestly, I think the assumption of privacy is a joke.  When Aaron Swartz did what the government always does it’s called “computer fraud and abuse”.  But when the govies do it, it’s called national security.  The act of running a spy state is perpetual terrorism.  

    It’s not that our government doesn’t do terror, it’s that they don’t want anyone else stealing their game.  Fair enough.  Just don’t let them steal your mind in the process, and always remember what it is to be a decent human being.

  6. CISPA is a bill that requests an executive agency to perform a rulemaking. It works the same was as the Sherman Act or a lot of the laws giving the SEC its power; congress sets out a purpose and some criteria and tells a competent agency to flesh out the details.

    This makes sense. Congresspeople aren’t very tech savvy and they are at least bright enough to know that. Equally important, the relevant technologies and problematic conduct is going to change faster than Congress could ever deal with. It’s not realistic that the law as it comes out of Congress would set forth how exactly it’s going to work.

    So the law is somewhat vague. That doesn’t mean that the law overrides all other law and the intelligence community can now run slipshod over all civil liberties. That said, there’s a totally fair and completely justifiable argument to be made for cabining the law so that certain freedoms are definitely protected. 

    That is not, however, the argument the EFF makes. They insist that if the law isn’t crystal clear, it’s no good. Practically speaking, the law can’t be crystal clear. The EFF is, it seems, perfectly happy with there being no law. “NO LAW” is pretty much their creed. What the law does or does not say becomes a bit less relevant from that perspective, I guess.

    There’s a big a problem right now, because this isn’t just about (really, not at all about) what people put on facebook. Top tier service providers are all private companies. The big pipes, all of the infrastructure on which our financial system, our banks, hospitals, military and the internet itself rely is overwhelming in the hands of private companies.

    Suppose there were an international threat to a city. The federal government could reach out to the local government and share information and coordinate action to deal with it. Suppose there were a credible cyber-threat (hate that word) to backbone service provider. The federal government would have a much harder time doing anything about it because of potential liability to the private company and restrictions on what the government can do with its information. CISPA is just the first step of many steps for figuring out how to do that.

    The EFF is saying that CISPA promises the government access (1) without any limitation (2) for any and all federal agencies (3) on any subject whatsoever (4) on any service provider whatsoever. Granted, the bill doesn’t stipulate any of those things. What the bill says is that the Director of National Intelligence should flesh out the details. So the EFF is assuming that because the bill doesn’t explicitly stipulate what the criteria will be, they must not exist. This is not an informed understanding of how the government has been working for the past 80-90 years.

    What would be better than a weird protest? Some serious thought about what the government should and shouldn’t be sharing with the private sector, what internet infrastructure needs more protection (and therefore more disclosure), and what should generally be left private (like your reddit account). Enactment by Congress isn’t the last step. There will be notice and comment on the new rule. The rulemaking process and its implementation will be subject to judicial review. There will be opportunities to amend or augment the legislation to better reflect modern realities or a more mature understanding of our needs.

    The EFF is just saying stop this process as early as possible…because scary. 


      They insist that if the law isn’t crystal clear, it’s no good.

      Well, that just so happens to be what I believe too. Laws should be crystal clear. One-size-fits-all laws written to deal with emerging technology that changes in unpredictable ways does not work. It hasn’t worked with DMCA, it hasn’t worked with CFAA, and it’s not going to work with CISPA either.

      1. This isn’t a substantive law like SOPA or CFAA. It doesn’t
        say what you or the government can or cannot do. It’s a delegation of power
        like that to the SEC or the EPA. It says that an agency shall make a rule on
        the subject. “The Director of National Intelligence shall establish


        The restrictions of that process aren’t in this bill;
        they’re part of the Administrative Procedure Act, implicit in the Constitution
        and set out by the courts. There are a whole lot of limitations on what
        agencies can do that Congress doesn’t have to lay out each and every time the tell an agency to do something.


        The EFF has made a straw-man argument. Their interpretation
        of this law reflects either ignorance on that which they claim expertise or
        intentional misinformation. In any case, don’t forget that you are just taking
        a bunch of lobbyists at their word.

    2. No what the EFF is saying is that a bill without ANY guidelines on your 1,2,3, and 4 is ripe for abuse. 

  7. Now that we have the internet, it becomes much more obvious that our governments do things in an internationally coordinated fashion. In the UK our government is also trying to impose thorough internet surveillance. The Snoopers Charter was recently defeated, although it will return. 

    The “snooper’s charter” showed just what the Government is capable of

  8. Point out that the next bunch of political slime could/should/would use CISPA against the current incumbents.

    That should kill CISPA quickly enough.

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