Ai Wei Wei, the renowned Chinese dissident who has been relentlessly persecuted by his own government, has written an op-ed for the Guardian comparing Chinese totalitarian surveillance with Prism and related NSA spying:
I lived in the United States for 12 years. This abuse of state power goes totally against my understanding of what it means to be a civilised society, and it will be shocking for me if American citizens allow this to continue. The US has a great tradition of individualism and privacy and has long been a centre for free thinking and creativity as a result.
In our experience in China, basically there is no privacy at all – that is why China is far behind the world in important respects: even though it has become so rich, it trails behind in terms of passion, imagination and creativity.
During my detention in China I was watched 24 hours a day. The light was always on. There were two guards on two-hour shifts standing next to me – even watching when I swallowed a pill; I had to open mouth so they could see my throat. You have to take a shower in front of them; they watch you while you brush your teeth, in the name of making sure you're not hurting yourself. They had three surveillance cameras to make sure the guards would not communicate with me.
But the guards whispered to me. They told stories about themselves. There is always humanity and privacy, even under the most restrictive conditions.
NSA surveillance: The US is behaving like China
In a party-line split, the U.S. Senate today voted to allow internet service providers to retain personal data without permission and sell it to whomever might pay for it. The Senate voted 50:48 in favor of S.J. 34, which would remove the rules and, under the authority of the Congressional Review Act, prevent similar rules […]
Senate Republicans have introduced a bill to ensure that the FCC won’t be able to prevent your ISP from spying on your internet usage and selling your private information. What does that mean in practice?
Privacy International interviewed 57 sources for their report on the link between surveillance and torture and murder in Kenya, including 32 law enforcement, military or intelligence officers with direct firsthand knowledge of the programs.
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