Apple and Other Tech Companies Sign Letter Backing Bills for Transparency in Government Surveillance

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by MacRumors, Oct 1, 2013.

  1. macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Apple, along with over 30 other technology corporations, investors, nonprofit groups and trade entities, have signed a letter urging the U.S. Congress to pass the Surveillance Order Reporting Act of 2013 and the Surveillance Transparency Act of 2013, announced The Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT) (via The Verge).

    Specifically, the letter [PDF link] calls for the signing of both pieces of legislation, which requests that the government deliver increased transparency and requires the government to provide technology companies the right to publish statistics about demands for user data.

    The concerns about government use of user data collecting began ramping up in June, when a U.S. government program named PRISM was revealed to be giving the U.S. National Security Agency direct access to user data on corporate servers across a wide spectrum of Internet companies including Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube, and Apple.
    The news comes after Apple vowed to team up with tech companies to ask for greater NSA transparency in July and after it released a statement on customer privacy and law enforcement requests for user data in June. Apple CEO Tim Cook, along with other tech executives, also met with U.S. President Barack Obama last month to discuss the issue of government surveillance.

    Note: Due to the political nature of the discussion regarding this topic, the comment thread is located in our Politics, Religion, Social Issues forum. All MacRumors forum members and site visitors are welcome to read and follow the thread, but posting is limited to forum members with at least 100 posts.

    Article Link: Apple and Other Tech Companies Sign Letter Backing Bills for Transparency in Government Surveillance
  2. macrumors 6502


    Dec 30, 2012
    Winwick, UK
    Like this will really do anything? The 'secret' spying on citizens will carry on regardless.
  3. macrumors 6502a

    NY Guitarist

    Mar 21, 2011
    It's a start...
  4. macrumors 6502


    Oct 4, 2011
  5. NY Guitarist, Oct 1, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2013

    macrumors 6502a

    NY Guitarist

    Mar 21, 2011
    I still am confused as to how this spying isn't unconstitutional in the U.S.?

    Isn't blanket spying without specific probable cause tantamount to an illegal search?
  6. macrumors 6502

    Feb 19, 2012
    New York
    Yes, but the corrupt judicial branch wrote the law, so...
  7. macrumors 68020

    Mar 11, 2009
    Some people have just convinced themselves that there is all kinds of spying going on around them 24/7.

    No bill will ever make them change their mind about things.
  8. macrumors 6502

    Oct 15, 2010
    it's a start, but just in case...

    In the meantime, let's not "overshare" details of our personal lives on the various social networks most of us are voluntarily participating in. ;)
  9. macrumors 6502

    Jun 16, 2009
    Cox's Creek, KY
    You must have just watched the most recent episode of South Park haha
  10. macrumors 6502a

    NY Guitarist

    Mar 21, 2011
    Completely irrelevant to, IMO, the questionable legality of wholesale spying without due process.
  11. macrumors 68000

    Apr 23, 2009
    Our government pisses all over the constitution. It doesn't matter anymore to them.
  12. macrumors 6502

    Mar 26, 2012
    Maybe congress will look at this whenever they decide how to stop the government shut down..
  13. macrumors 68020


    Dec 31, 2007
    Colorado & Ontario
    That's cute. I'm sure they'll find a nice place to file that, alongside all the other esteemed opinions of everyone else they don't answer to.
  14. macrumors 6502

    Nov 2, 2012
    I'm sure that they will place the petition in a piece of furniture that looks like the new Mac Pro.
  15. macrumors 604


    Nov 26, 2007
    Even if the government starts back up, I expect the national government will crumble within a year or so.

    I should probably buy myself a gun so my family isn't defenseless when that day comes...
  16. macrumors 6502a

    Jan 3, 2009
    The NSA already has plenty of transparency into the tech industry and its customers... Why does the NSA need more?
  17. thelink, Oct 1, 2013
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2013

    macrumors regular


    Jun 29, 2012
    You are false my friend.. the government will continue to seep our freedom from us inch by inch. We need to fight!
  18. macrumors 6502a

    NY Guitarist

    Mar 21, 2011
    Good luck to you and your family who will be subjected to your dystopian belief system.


    Meaning what exactly...?
  19. macrumors 601


    Feb 4, 2004
    Florida Resident
    Won't the NSA not receive additional funding if the government has to shutdown? It isn't a crucial service.
  20. macrumors 65816

    Jul 17, 2009
    Der Wald
    The NSA ALWAYS has the last word....."For Reasons of National Security".

    They can get away with murder while being shielded from all requests for accountability.

    A very sad situation because now they are effectively about the constitution and the law.
  21. macrumors regular

    Jan 17, 2006
    about 3 meters from here. *points*
    ...which was greeted with:

    "Sorry, the parties you were looking for could not be found at this time. Please check back when the government is running again."
  22. macrumors 603


    So long as citizens cede their Constitutionally protected sovereignty to the government with deeds and the way they vote, the government will cheerfully take it. So long as citizens and judges tolerate the standard of justice in administrative courts that oversee all regulators, of "presumed correct", rather than "preponderance of the evidence" or some such, Regulators will trample all over persons and rights with impunity.

  23. macrumors 603


    Apr 19, 2004
    This is just a business move to simply put it.... They didn't have an issue with it when it was all still a secret. But, when it could effect their profits due to public outrage, then they are all screaming for transparency....
  24. macrumors 65816


    Mar 24, 2004
    These companies have a vested stake in transparency, namely the customers lack of trust affects their bottom line. The Government on the other hand has the IRS to keep them flush with your donated money whether they spy on you or not. Governments (the people in power) always want more power and more control and they don't really care whether you like them spying or not. At this point in time almost everything they do could be found unconstitutional in some way or another... But, we all have more important things to think about, right?
    How bad could it really get, after all this is America...Land of the Free...Lets go down to the mall and buy some cool stuff. Everything will be okay...right? :)
  25. macrumors 604


    Nov 26, 2007
    If our government is one of tyranny and it is necessary, it means to put the second amendment to use. The second amendment has nothing to do with state militia or hunting and everything to do with allowing the citizens to keep their government in check, by force if necessary.

    It's not necessary yet, to be clear. Should we be put under martial law or something similar, it may be. I don't think the government is functional enough to do anything like that, even if they wanted to.

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