EFF in the News
The US patent system is a mess. One way to fix it is to abolish software patents.
That is by far the most incendiary proposal the Electronic Frontier Foundation offers in its comprehensive report on overhauling a painfully broken patent system. The report, two years in the making, suggests everything from strengthening the quality of patents to making patent litigation less costly. And there, on page 27 of the 29-page report, is “Abolish software patents.”
Sophia Cope, a staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), which recently submitted an Amicus Brief on the plaintiffs' behalf, told VICE News that the complaints made by in the suit are very plausible. Cope, like others, drew parallels to IBM'S provision of a similar identification system to the Nazis during the Holocaust.
"IBM has a well documented history of doing something very similar," she said, in reference to the punchcard system IBM developed for the Nazis that was allegedly used to identify Jewish citizens in census data.
WASHINGTON — Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a liberal telecom advocacy organization, suddenly does not like the net neutrality proposal being pushed by the Obama administration.
According to the White House visitors log, EFF staff technologist Jeremy Gillula joined 29 other pro-net neutrality activists at a September 2014 meeting with Obama senior Internet adviser David Edelman in the Old Executive Office Building, six weeks before President Obama announced his Title II Internet regulation.
“Basically, this piece is citing Section 706—a statute that is in place now and will be no matter what happens tomorrow,” says Mitch Stoltz, a staff attorney for the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “The specifics of [the Post story] seem far-fetched and weird.”
Superfish isn't the cyberapocalypse. It is part of a larger problem. As far as preloaded software goes, though, Superfish might be as bad as it gets, said Jeremy Gillula, a staff technologist with the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital privacy advocacy group.
The best course of action, when getting a new computer, is to reboot the computer and install a new OS. It is the only way to be completely sure of what is on your laptop.
"We can't trust the manufacturers anymore," Gillula told Mashable. "We see they don't do a very good job of auditing the security."
That kind of function is of grave concern, said Nadia Kayyali of the San Francisco-based Electronic Frontier Foundation, which has been closely watching jurisdictions that have acquired StingRays, including Oakland, Fremont and San Francisco.
"Nationwide, there has been at least one agency that said it intended to use it to collect data on protesters," Kayyali said.
A recent investigative report on the South Carolina Department of Corrections by the Electronic Frontier Foundation offered an alarming piece of data. More than 300 inmates received disciplinary detention in solitary confinement for posting on Facebook since that activity was banned in 2012. Under the regulations in place at the time, some of those prisoners would be locked up alone for decades.
The digital rights group Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) reported earlier in February that hundreds of inmates were sentenced to years of solitary confinement for accessing Facebook and other social networking sites.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation released a new white paper today offering proposals on how to fix the broken U.S. patent system. The first half of the white paper, "Defend Innovation," is based on "two-and-a-half years worth of research, drawing from the stories, expertise, and ideas of more than 16,500 people who agree that the current patent system is broken," according to the EFF.