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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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Computerworld reports that U.S. senators have confirmed that representatives from Apple and Google will participate in Senate hearings on privacy spurred by questions over location databases stored by the companies' smartphone operating systems.
"I'm pleased that Apple and Google have confirmed that they'll be sending representatives to testify at my upcoming hearing on mobile technology and privacy," Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) said in a statement issued today.

Franken, who chairs a new Senate privacy panel, added that the hearing was a "first step" in Congressional inquiries whether federal laws have kept up with the surge in mobile devices, including smartphones and tablets.
Franken was the first federal legislator to lodge a formal inquiry with Apple about its practices, seeking information on what data the company is collecting and what it is doing with it.
Franken's hearing, which is set to begin at 10 a.m. ET on May 10, will also take testimony from officials with the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission, as well as from Justin Brookman, director of consumer privacy at the Center for Democracy & Technology.
Apple officially responded to the controversy earlier this week after it had investigated exactly what was going on and determined how best to explain the situation. Apple CEO Steve Jobs noted in an interview on Wednesday that he expected that Apple would testify for governmental representatives, calling it "great" that they were interested in the topic.

Article Link: Apple and Google to Testify at Congressional Hearings on Privacy
 

Sayer

macrumors 6502a
Jan 4, 2002
981
0
Austin, TX
Good to see the Senate taking up such pressing issues as, wifi hotspot and cell tower locations to make GPS actually usable on a mobile device.

I guess the Senate doesn't have to drive 15 miles, one way, to work every day with $4-5/gallon gas prices. And they don't have to actually pay their debt, since they can just print more money and sell debt to China/Japan/England.

Good to see the priorities of the country are still "stuck on stupid."
 

chirpie

macrumors 6502a
Jul 23, 2010
646
183
This has got to be the most frustrating thing in the world to sit there and have someone who is your absolute intellectual inferior (on this subject) sit there and tell you how to do your job.
 

TTarkas

macrumors newbie
Jul 14, 2010
14
0
This has got to be the most frustrating thing in the world to sit there and have someone who is your absolute intellectual inferior (on this subject) sit there and tell you how to do your job.

Absolute intellectual inferior ON ANY SUBJECT ... FTFY good to go now
 

TTarkas

macrumors newbie
Jul 14, 2010
14
0
Why in the world would anyone appear voluntarily in front of a senate panel? How did that work out for the athletes that are now under indictment for perjury after testifying about steroids? They had broken no federal law and testified as a courtesy. Then they are in big trouble.

I would request from the Senate a complete description of which part of the constitution they suspect had been violated. Then a full discussion regarding the subject of limited federal government as designed by the founders.

Then I would tell them to go to HAIL.


Now ... I fully believe that Apple and Google should be completely responsible to their customers regarding this issue. And my gut tells me that I trust Apple more than Google, but I could be wrong. But it's none of the Government's business. It is not, and never has been the business of the government to protect the consumer.
 

435713

macrumors 6502a
May 19, 2010
834
153
Yeah because this issue is so much more crucial than the debacle over at Sony with the PSN thing. :rolleyes:
 

rtheb

macrumors 6502
Jul 21, 2008
308
7
This will be a media showcase to show "our congress" gives a hoot!

Lots of softball Q & A and then a News blurb advising us all that the US takes privacy issues seriously!

Grief!
 

chirpie

macrumors 6502a
Jul 23, 2010
646
183
Yeah because this issue is so much more crucial than the debacle over at Sony with the PSN thing. :rolleyes:

LOL

I know, right? 77 million people may have gotten their CC info, personal gaming habits, and address and contact info stolen. But hey, THAT was an "accident" brought upon by illegally exploiting flaws in the system.

The Apple case is a situation where someone could find out within a couple miles where you used to have gone. It's different though, because THAT was an "accident" brought upon by illegally exploiting flaws in the system.

...

Waitaminute...
 

PCClone

macrumors 6502a
Feb 26, 2010
718
0
I will sleep better tonight knowing that a washed up comedian is looking out for me. Maybe he will get Jessie Ventura involved as the enforcer. The Minnesota dynamic duo.

Good thing his glasses are half an inch thick so we won't be able to see the glazed look when Apple aims Gogle start explaining things.
 

ArchaicRevival

macrumors regular
Jan 16, 2011
245
0
Bucketheadland
LOL

I know, right? 77 million people may have gotten their CC info, personal gaming habits, and address and contact info stolen. But hey, THAT was an "accident" brought upon by illegally exploiting flaws in the system.

The Apple case is a situation where someone could find out within a couple miles where you used to have gone. It's different though, because THAT was an "accident" brought upon by illegally exploiting flaws in the system.

...

Waitaminute...

LOL that was pretty funny...

But again, there was no way for anyone at Apple to find out because the data is encrypted anonymously AND it's saved on your own darn computer lol.
 

KnightWRX

macrumors Pentium
Jan 28, 2009
15,046
4
Quebec, Canada
I would request from the Senate a complete description of which part of the constitution they suspect had been violated.

Uh ? As an american, you should know that the constitution does not apply to private entities like Apple and Google and if anyone with a law degree were to ask such a stupid question in regards to being summoned to a Senate hearing, I'd hope they'd be disbarred and publicly ridiculed.
 

ten-oak-druid

macrumors 68000
Jan 11, 2010
1,980
0
People who minimize the importance of privacy don't get it.

Sure you can say there is no abuse of the privacy, etc. Yet it is still important to fight for rights. Establishing precedent that privacy rights are "quaint" and unnecessary now makes it more difficult for later generations to use those rights when they might be necessary. The world is not static.

The rate at which rights are abandoned is also a factor. Shrugging off privacy rights now on seemingly harmless data gathering data makes it easier for entities to take the next step 5 years from now and use that data in some fashion without permission. At that point it isn't gathering and using data without consent that would be new. It would only be trivial usage. After all the gathering would have been going on and everyone is use to that. Five years after that another incremental step won't be such a shock. Its the frog in boiling water vs. the frog in water slowly warming. Take too big a step to infringe on rights and people get concerned. Take small incremental steps and people don't notice.

Finally, there is an issue with what I call modern day peasants. These are the people who will rally to the cause of the ultra rich or mega corporations at the expense of themselves. In one breath they support a company going to court over corporate espionage or infringement of intellectual property. But when it is the little guy wanting to fight for a personal right, the support of the modern day peasant isn't there. Especially if it is the little guy vs. the government or a large corporate entity. The modern day peasant a sycophant . Like the peasant of medieval times, he or she kisses up to the local lord thinking someday the favor will be returned. The lord, CEO or politician really has no interest in inviting the peasant to the castle or country club but appreciates the loyalty.
 

Vegasman

macrumors 6502
Dec 16, 2010
344
3
Why in the world would anyone appear voluntarily in front of a senate panel? How did that work out for the athletes that are now under indictment for perjury after testifying about steroids? They had broken no federal law and testified as a courtesy. Then they are in big trouble.

I think the trick is to understand what testifying means before agreeing to it :)
 

rdowns

macrumors Penryn
Jul 11, 2003
27,397
12,521
We really need a forum rule to stop people with no knowledge of a subject from commenting on it. :rolleyes:
 

Full of Win

macrumors 68030
Nov 22, 2007
2,615
1
Ask Apple
Get statements UNDER OATH and bring charges if Apple tries to spew lies and half truths. I would love to see Apple executives do the perp walk if they lie during this hearing.
 

3282868

macrumors 603
Jan 8, 2009
5,281
0
Is this the same government that used warrantless wiretaps on AT&T customers in the "fight against terror"? I find this whole ordeal ironic.

Side note, someone suggested Apple may have intentionally wanted this leaked in order to bring other companies such as Google to the forefront of this issue, perhaps as a way to dodge a bullet. I can't imagine any company being so blasé about an issue such as this (aside from "Aettana-Gate" which was more media hype).


People who minimize the importance of privacy don't get it..

I'm more concerned about "The Patriot Act," you know, that "little law" the Bush admin instated that basically threw out "Due Process" and tore up the Constitution. Our founding fathers are rolling in their graves...

...although honestly, they can follow me all they want, my life is BORING. Heck, Jobs can come by for dinner any time. I'll even make certain it's Vegan :p
 
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ten-oak-druid

macrumors 68000
Jan 11, 2010
1,980
0
While some may argue that Apple and the iphone user have an agreement that allows Apple to collect data in one fashion or another, the agreement cannot be made if the iphone owner knows nothing about it.

Collection of data needs to be disclosed to the public in order for individuals to be able to make a choice. I don't know if a company can be made to offer a choice of collection or no collection . Perhaps it is their right to say if you buy this, this is how it works. But at the very least they have to tell you that is how it works. If not legally bound to offer the ability to stop data collection, I would think a company that offers the choice has a better public image.

The other thing to be concerned about is that large companies have much more access to government leaders at higher levels than individuals. If you have blind faith in company X and the government then you will believe the government will never get access to this information. Powerful people are always honest and reasonable right?

I am not picking on Apple. I'm sure Apple is not the only company collecting data. And perhaps there is no use of the data to be concerned about. Doesn't matter.



Is this the same government that used warrantless wiretaps on AT&T customers in the "fight against terror"? I find this whole ordeal ironic.

...

I'm more concerned about "The Patriot Act," you know, that "little law" the Bush admin instated that basically threw out "Due Process" and tore up the Constitution. Our founding fathers are rolling in their graves...

...although honestly, they can follow me all they want, my life is BORING. Heck, Jobs can come by for dinner any time :p


I share your concern. But to get people to want to fight for rights, you cannot say company X is Ok so they can collect data. You mentioned yourself that the government used AT&T. The iphone uses AT&T. And while you and I may believe Apple wouldn't share the data in that manner, things change. What about 10 years from now? What if some event occurs that makes people think anything goes?

And finally you say that you don't care because your life is boring. What if at some point in the future, deals are made that allow law enforcement access to the data and people shrug it off? You may not do anything illegal but what if every time a crime occurs within a radius of your phone, police pick you and others up for an interview as a witness? Even if you were oblivious to the crime? Or what if speeding tickets just arrive in the mail through monitoring? It isn't that simple.
 
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Popeye206

macrumors 68040
Sep 6, 2007
3,148
836
NE PA USA
I hope Apple and Google can help educate congress before they try and regulate this to a point where we loose functionality.

I worry they will change things for the worse because they don't know any more than the news bytes.
 
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