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Rick Falkvinge

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-05-18 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: In a series of posts on this blog, we have shown how practically everything our parents took for granted with regards to privacy has been completely eliminated for our children, just because they use digital tools instead of analog, and the people interpreting the laws are saying that...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-05-11 - Original post - cached version

Europe: Slack has updated its Terms of Service to let your manager read your private conversations in private channels. Our analog parents would have been shocked and horrified at the very idea that their bosses would open packages and read personal messages that were addressed to them. For our...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-05-04 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: The dystopic stories of the 1950s said the government would install cameras in our homes, with the government listening in and watching us at all times. Those stories were all wrong, for we installed the cameras ourselves.

In the analog world of our parents, it was taken for...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-05-01 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: Our parents, at least in the Western world, had a right to hold private conversations face-to-face, whether out in public or in the sanctity of their home. This is all but gone for our digital children.

Not long ago, it was the thing of horror books and movies that there would...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-04-29 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: For our analog parents, a diary or a personal letter could rarely be touched by authorities, not even by law enforcement searching for evidence of a crime. Objects such as these had protection over and above the constitutional privacy safeguards. For our digital children, however, the...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-04-13 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: In the analog world of our parents, it was absolutely unthinkable that the government would demand to know every footstep you took, every phonecall you made, and every message you wrote, just as a routine matter. For our digital children, government officials keep insisting on this as...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-04-06 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: At worst, our analog parents could be prevented from meeting each other. Our digital children are prevented from talking about particular subjects, once the conversation is already happening. This is a horrifying development.

When our digital children are posting a link to The...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-03-31 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: Our analog parents’ dating preferences were considered a most private of matters. For our digital children, their dating preferences is a wholesale harvesting opportunity for marketing purposes. How did this terrifying shift come to be?

I believe the first big harvester of...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-01-31 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: We’ve seen how our digital children’s privacy is violated in everything they buy with cash or credit, in a way our analog parents would have balked at. But even worse: our digital children’s privacy is also violated by tracking what they don’t buy — either actively decline or just...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-01-26 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: In the last article, we focused on how people are tracked today when using credit cards instead of cash. But few pay attention to the fact that we’re tracked when using cash today, too.

Few people pay attention to the little sign on the revolving door on Schiphol Airport in...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-01-22 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: The anonymous cash of our analog parents is fast disappearing, and in its wake comes trackable and permissioned debit cards to our children. While convenient, it’s a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

In the last article, we looked at how our analog parents could anonymously buy a...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-01-17 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: In the analog world of our parents, leaks to the press were heavily protected in both ends – both for the leaker and for the reporter receiving the leak. In the digital world of our children, this has been unceremoniously thrown out the window while discussing something unrelated...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-01-15 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: Our analog parents had the ability to read news anonymously, however they wanted, wherever they wanted, and whenever they wanted. For our digital children, a government agent might as well be looking over their shoulder: the government knows what news sources they read, what articles,...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-01-05 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: Ross Ulbricht handed in his appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court last week, highlighting an important Analog Equivalent Privacy Right in the process: Just because you’re using equipment that makes a third party aware of your circumstances, does that really nullify any expectation of...

Rick Falkvinge - 2018-01-01 - Original post - cached version

When our analog parents searched for information, that activity took place in libraries, and that was one of the most safeguarded privacies of all. When our digital children search for information, their innermost thoughts are instead harvested wholesale for marketing. How did this happen?...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-12-27 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: “Everything you say or do can and will be used against you, at any point in the far future when the context and agreeableness of what you said or did has changed dramatically.” With the analog surveillance of our parents, everything was caught in the context of its time. The digital...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-12-25 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: Our analog parents had the right to meet whomever they liked, wherever they liked, and discuss whatever they liked, without the government knowing. Our digital children have lost this, just because they use more modern items.

For a lot of our digital children’s activities, there...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-12-22 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: In the analog world of our parents, as an ordinary citizen and not under surveillance because of being a suspect of a crime, it was taken for granted that you could walk around a city without authorities tracking you at the footstep level. Our children don’t have this right anymore in...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-12-20 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: The liberties of our parents are not being inherited by our children – they are being lost wholesale in the transition to digital. Today, we’ll look at the importance of posting anonymous public messages.

When I was in my teens, before the Internet (yes, really), there was...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-12-18 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: Our parents were taking liberties for granted in their analog world, liberties that are not passed down to our children in the transition to digital — such as the simple right to send an anonymous letter.

Sometimes when speaking, I ask the audience how many would be okay with...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-12-16 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: In a series of 21 posts on this blog, we’ll examine how privacy rights — essential civil liberties — have been completely lost in the transition to digital. The erosion is nothing short of catastrophic.

In a series of posts on this blog, we will take a look at a large amount of...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-12-09 - Original post - cached version

Global: In the last post, I recalled that the only thing that matter whether data collection is taking place is whether it's technically possible, and that if you carry an electronic sensor, you must assume it to be active. Here's why it doesn't matter one bit if the sensor was made with "good...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-12-06 - Original post - cached version

Global: As Quartz revealed, Google has been tracking your location since the start of 2017. At this point, the story should not be about why Google did this, but why, with all the experience at hand, anybody expected otherwise. Privacy is your own responsibility today.

When Quartz broke...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-12-01 - Original post - cached version

Corruption: So the United States FCC has released its plans to eradicate Net Neutrality in the United States, on Thanksgiving, as it said it would. This, on its own, merits more discussion – for it is such a blatant display not just of bad faith, but bad faith that they fully expect to get away...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-11-24 - Original post - cached version

Corruption: Sci-Hub is starting to get judgments and censorship applied against it. It’s noteworthy that not even murder or genocide is considered cause for such Internet censorship as is now being applied to Sci-Hub. How and when did the free sharing of scientific knowledge become the worst...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-11-17 - Original post - cached version

Copyright Monopoly: Putting network specifications behind subscription paywalls gives the NSA and other surveillance agencies a decisive advantage against the freedom of the Internet. That is the inescapable conclusion of the recent KRACK vulnerability.

There’s been a lot of debate about...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-11-17 - Original post - cached version

Bitcoin: Toy with the following idea: with people used to Google searches having been free, instant and reliable for years, a new Google management decides that a “price market” should develop for searches, with Google prices suddenly costing upwards of 20 dollars, taking hours to complete, and...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-11-04 - Original post - cached version

Bitcoin: “Bitcoin to the Moon” has long been a common saying, but nobody knows what it really means. I propose it is time to define “bitcoin to the Moon” to mean the most literal interpretation possible.

In the bitcoin community — and I mean that in the most inclusive sense, in all...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-10-29 - Original post - cached version

Global: The recent Wi-Fi “KRACK” vulnerability, which allowed anyone to get onto a secure network (and which was quickly patched by reputable vendors), had been in plain sight behind a corporate-level paywall for 13 years. This raises a number of relevant, interesting, and uncomfortable...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-10-21 - Original post - cached version

Czech Republic: The Czech Pirate Party is entering Parliament at an estimated 9.7% with half the votes counted. The Czech pirates have fought long and hard, and overcome frustrating setbacks like missing the parliamentary threshold by just 0.2% in the last election. Congratulations to Ivan...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-10-20 - Original post - cached version

Repression: British lawmakers have announced 15 years in prison for taking part of banned literature. However, the threat of prison only covers new story formats that lawmakers think don’t deserve the same kind of protection as old-fashioned books: it’s only people who watch video on the...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-10-16 - Original post - cached version

Global: Governments are still using “terrorism” as a scareword to get any insane law passed – like Britain’s digital book-burning law. But with its other hand, those same governments are expanding the definition of terrorism way beyond what the public could possibly imagine: the government’s...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-10-15 - Original post - cached version

Corruption: British Home Secretary Amber Rudd has announced a fifteen-year prison sentence for watching terrorist propaganda, whatever that means this week. There is an exception for academics and journalists with “legitimate reason” to watch the material firsthand. But this also means the...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-10-11 - Original post - cached version

Uncategorized: Bell Canada, one of Canada’s major ISPs, is requesting the Canadian government to create a governmental censorship regime, blacklisting resources that Canadians shall not be reading. According to Bell Canada, this is necessary to “prevent people from leaving regulated television...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-10-02 - Original post - cached version

Copyright Monopoly: Every so often, you hear copyright industry lobbyists ask “why copyright law shouldn’t apply on the Internet”, suggesting that the Internet is a lawless land with regard to people sharing what they like. They have a point, but not the point they think: Our laws have checks...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-09-27 - Original post - cached version

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), which used to develop standards for the Web, has been captured by the copyright industry. In a doubly controversial vote, the W3C decided that media companies and not the user should be in control, ending their longstanding commitment to openness and the...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-09-24 - Original post - cached version

Activism: On October 10, an important committee in the European Parliament will vote on future copyright law. It hangs in the balance, and ordinary people like you and I contacting Members of the European Parliament can really make a difference, like you’ll remember we did with ACTA five years...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-09-22 - Original post - cached version

Global: New research shows how a mobile phone can be turned into a passive indoor ultrasound sonar, locating people with high precision indoors using multi-target echolocation, and is even able to discern a rough selection of activities. It does this by overlaying imperceptible ultrasound sonar...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-08-30 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: Hardware maker Sonos has a new privacy policy, and is telling users that unless they agree to it, their devices may cease to function entirely. Of course, since people bought these objects, they’re those people’s property. And since Sonos is taking an action that they know will break...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-08-29 - Original post - cached version

Activism: The German newspaper Die Zeit has a long feature this week about IMSI catchers and their countermeasures, words that were long heard only in countersurveillance cultures at Black Hat and Defcon. Observing this phenomenon make the jump from the obscure to the mainstream tells us a lot...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-06-11 - Original post - cached version

Bitcoin: In 2011, I went all-in into bitcoin. As I described in a blog post at the time, I took all my savings and my entire credit line and put it into the fledgling currency, once I had realized its disruptiveness, and I did so at about $3 valuation (to simplify events a bit). People mocked...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-06-07 - Original post - cached version

Politicians do not understand the Internet. It is not so much that the politicians in power today in their 60s weren’t born with it, even if that’s also true. It’s more that politicians as a profession are institutionally incapable of understanding it, just because it functions without – even...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-06-06 - Original post - cached version

Copyright Monopoly: Denmark’s ISPs are collectively putting their foot down and will no longer surrender identifying subscriber information to the copyright industry’s lawyer armies. This follows a ruling in neighboring Norway, where the Supreme Court ruled that ISP Telenor is under no...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-05-20 - Original post - cached version

Old World: Britain’s hospitals have been brought to a standstill because of ransomware infecting obsolete and unpatched Windows XP systems. The same obsolete operating system is powering Britain’s nuclear weapons arsenal. Is it prudent to ask if the British nuclear weapons submarines have been...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-05-12 - Original post - cached version

Copyright Monopoly: The copyright industry keeps pounding a simplistic message to legislators – that copyright law is simple and that nobody honest could ever break it, and that it’s easy to “tell right from wrong”. But when you look at the deeds of the copyright industry instead of their words...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-05-03 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: It was a perfect service: sorting your mail and not just removing all spam for you, but also unsubscribing you from all of that spam garbage going forward. It kept your inbox perfectly clean. But behind the curtains, it also sold your inbox to the highest bidder.

Sometimes, you’...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-05-01 - Original post - cached version

Activism: Based on Blockstream’s behavior in the Bitcoin community, I have become absolutely certain that Segwit contains patents that Blockstream and/or their owners have planned to use offensively. I base this not on having read the actual patents, for they can be kept secret for quite some...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-04-30 - Original post - cached version

Bitcoin – Nozomi Hayase: The ongoing Bitcoin block size debate has accelerated into a kind of civil war. From threats of a 51% attack to online trolls and controversy over the allegation of covert AsicBoost usage, disagreements on scaling solutions have created a toxic environment in the...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-04-24 - Original post - cached version

Australia: This month, Australia’s law mandating telecommunications data retention went into effect. It is clear that Australia learned absolutely nothing from Europe’s abysmal 10-year failure with this exact law before it was finally struck down by courts as utterly incompatible with human...

Rick Falkvinge - 2017-04-23 - Original post - cached version

Privacy: New US regulations ban laptops on board some aircraft, requiring laptops to be in checked luggage. One of the first things you learn in information security is that if an adversary has had physical access to your computer, then it is not your computer anymore. This effectively means...

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