A brief history of the surveillance debate

2012: "Mass surveillance is fine -- if it wasn't, you'd see major corporations trying to court new business by building in crypto tools that kept out the surveillance agencies. The fact that they're not doing this tells you that surveillance opponents are an out-of-touch, paranoid minority."

2016: "Mass surveillance is necessary -- when companies use crypto tools as 'marketing ploys,' they're getting in the way of something we all agree is proportionate and legitimate!"

Notable Replies

  1. I think it's more like "moving the goal posts." It went from "mass surveillance is fine because..." to "mass surveillance is fine, period" with no example to justify it. I guess the circular reasoning is "mass surveillance is fine because mass surveillance is fine."

  2. That's the part that's been bugging me lately. Somehow we've reached a point where it's assumed the government needs to be able to decrypt your data, log who and when you call, and have access to everything. When did we have that conversation as a nation?

  3. Basically, because people who don't care about privacy ("What do I have to hide?") answered polls that said they were okay with the FBI breaking in to terrorists' cell phones. (Sure the shooting in California was tragic, but basically no more tragic than a bus accident. We've been doing much worse to ourselves for ages.)

  4. Nelsie says:

    We're having it now. Trouble is, the government isn't listening. Moreover, they're saying that we've already had it.

  5. The more "they" say the "Homeland", the more I want to run and be an expat writer.

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