EFFector Vol. 20, No. 35 September 06, 2007 email@example.com A Publication of the Electronic Frontier Foundation ISSN 1062-9424 In the 439th Issue of EFFector:
- Visit StoptheSpying.org and Fight for Your Freedom Now!
- Ex-DOJ Official Pens Tell-All Book on "Flimsy" Legal Basis for Executive Power
- Administration Leaks Confirm AT&T and Verizon's Role in Warrantless Wiretapping
- Microsoft Embraces Machinima...and Maybe the GPL?
- Is it Legal to Unlock Your iPhone?
- Check Out the 7th Annual "Future of Music Policy Summit" in Washington, DC!
- miniLinks (10): At Rapleaf, Your Personals Are Public
For more information on EFF activities & alerts: http://www.eff.org/ Make a donation and become an EFF member today! http://eff.org/support/ Tell a friend about EFF: http://action.eff.org/site/Ecard?ecard_id=1061 effector: n, Computer Sci. A device for producing a desired change. : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : * Visit StoptheSpying.org and Fight for Your Freedom Now! The president is unconstitutionally wiretapping the telephone and Internet communications of millions of ordinary Americans. Telecom giants want to block lawsuits like EFF's case against AT&T and get immunity for their illegal collaboration with the president's program. And now Congress is threatening to let them get away with it. Stand with EFF as we launch a new campaign to take on Congress and stop the spying. Tell the government to stop surveillance of Americans' communications without a warrant. Defend your freedom now: http://www.stopthespying.org For at least six years, President Bush has authorized the National Security Agency (NSA) to conduct dragnet surveillance on our domestic telecommunications networks, vacuuming up the private communications of millions of ordinary Americans with no warrants or other meaningful oversight. Yet instead of reining in this intolerable attack on your Constitutional rights, the Democratic leadership caved to the president's demands for even more spying authority by passing the so-called "Protect America Act" in August. Now the Administration wants to make its power grab permanent, prevent any court from stopping the illegal spying, and give companies like AT&T a "get-out-of-jail-free" card. It's going to take massive public outrage to make Congress grow a backbone and check the president's abuse of power. The first step is to demand a strong, clear commitment from Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to protect your rights. Legislation could be considered this month, so please don't wait before picking up the phone and making your voice heard. You can get contact information and talking points at: http://www.stopthespying.org : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : * Crunch Time for E-voting Reform If all goes as planned, H.R. 811 -- the Voter Confidence and Increased Accessibility Act of 2007 -- will come to a floor vote in the House of Representatives on Thursday or Friday of this week. Despite speculation to the contrary, it is not at all clear whether the bill, introduced by New Jersey Representative Rush Holt, will pass or whether a substantively similar companion bill will then pass the Senate. Like it or not, with election officials arguing that they're running out of time to implement wholesale changes, this likely amounts to Congress's only attempt to make any serious improvements to the nation's election procedures ahead of the 2008 presidential election. Whatever its shortcomings, and whatever its incremental pace, H.R. 811 offers an important step forward. EFF continues to call for more ambitious reform than that offered by the current version of the bill, but we also recognize that H.R. 811 offers the best immediate opportunity for meaningful change. It needs your support today. Without it, be prepared to live with no additional federal protections for the 2008 election. Any new bill will be targeted at the 2010 or 2012 general election. Take action now; tell your Representative to support H.R. 811: http://action.eff.org/site/Advocacy?id=109 For background on the bill, see EFF's article, "HR 811: Separating Truth From Fiction in E-voting Reform": http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/archives/005308.php See EFF's E-voting page: http://www.eff.org/Activism/E-voting/ For this post and related links: http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/archives/005421.php : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : * Ex-DOJ Official Pens Tell-All Book on "Flimsy" Legal Basis for Executive Power This week, the New York Times released a preview of Prof. Jack Goldsmith's upcoming book, The Terror Presidency: Law and Judgment Inside the Bush Administration. Now a professor at Harvard Law School, Goldsmith was previously the head of the Department of Justice's (DOJ's) Office of Legal Counsel, an office deeply involved in developing the legal theories underpinning the Administration's expansion of Executive power. According to Prof. Goldsmith's book, the Administration continues to pull out all the stops in an attempt to eliminate legal review. It refused the appropriate clearances for an investigation by the Justice Department's Office of Professional Responsibility, stonewalled Congressional subpoenas for the legal memos, concealed FISA court orders ruling on the legal theories and asserted the state secret privilege in civil lawsuits trying to stop the surveillance. The Administration's thin claims of state secrets can no longer be allowed to cover up the truth about its illegal activity. Take action now to fight the warrantless surveillance and tell Congress to stand up for the rule of law: http://action.eff.org/fisa For the New York Time's article, "Conscience of a Conservative": http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/09/magazine/09rosen.html?ex=1347076800&en=426a5f520b57279a&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss See EFF's page on the NSA's Warrantless Domestic Surveillance: http://www.eff.org/Privacy/Surveillance/NSA/ For the full post and related links: http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/archives/005422.php : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : * Administration Leaks Confirm AT&T and Verizon's Role in Warrantless Wiretapping Last Friday, the Administration filed yet another court brief contending that the case against AT&T for its cooperation in the warrantless wiretapping program must be dismissed, for fear that the bad guys might figure out the well known fact that AT&T had indeed participated. In response to the Director of National Intelligence's admission that the companies that "were being sued" "had assisted" the wiretapping program, the Administration attempts to minimize McConnell's admission. And on the very same day, the Administration went to work on gathering political support for its proposal to grant retroactive immunity to the telecommunications giants. Over a dozen government officials spoke to the Associated Press "on condition they not be identified because sensitive negotiations with Congress are ongoing." Despite the oft- repeated litigation position that naming particular telecommunications companies was too sensitive: "One of the officials said the defendants in suits brought by the American Civil Liberties Union -- Verizon and AT&T -- would be the key beneficiaries of the proposed legislation." So how do we explain this apparent discrepancy? Find out in our full post: http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/archives/005420.php For National Intelligence Director Mike McConnell's Q&A transcript: http://tca-reference-desk.blogspot.com/2007/08/transcript-interview-with-mike.html For the New York Times article, "Role of Telecom Firms in Wiretaps Is Confirmed": http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/24/washington/24nsa.html?%3Cbr%20/%3Eex=1345608000&en=4e8428cf3d46306c&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss For the AP article, "Bush Seeks Legal Immunity for Telecoms": http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5jru-renJE_PhswOokuBfOOx1O_Vg Read more about EFF's case against AT&T: http://www.eff.org/legal/cases/att : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : * Microsoft Embraces Machinima ... and Maybe the GPL? The machinima world got some big news recently when Microsoft announced its "Game Content Usage Rules," which is a license that explicitly authorizes the creation of machinima (and other derivative works) using Microsoft game content. As far as we know, this is the first time a major commercial game vendor has created a "machinima license" to facilitate this exciting new genre. And there's an interesting General Public License (GPL) intersection with this new Microsoft license that could potentially be your defense if Microsoft sues you for infringement. What is it, you ask? Find out in our post: http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/archives/005419.php Wikipedia defines the "machinima" hybrid genre here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Machinima Check out Spartan Life's interview of Malcolm McLaren for an example of the amazing things machinima creators are doing using Halo: http://www.thisspartanlife.com/episodes/1003_mod5.php : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : * Is it Legal to Unlock Your iPhone? Well, now that a high-school senior has done it, everyone wants to know: is it legal to unlock your iPhone? The answer, as we lawyers like to say, is complicated. But, we do know who's qualified to offer some direction. Find out in our complete post: http://www.eff.org/deeplinks/archives/005418.php : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : * Check Out the 7th Annual "Future of Music Policy Summit" in Washington, DC! Future of Music Coalition (FMC) is a national nonprofit that works on the issues at the intersection of music, law, technology and policy. For the past six years, FMC has organized an annual Policy Summit that brings an unprecedented mix of 500 musicians, artists, attorneys and policymakers together for discussions about issues that are emerging as the promotion and distribution of music moves to a global, digital platform. This year, FMC is back in Washington, DC, to host the 7th annual "Future of Music Policy Summit" from September 17- 18, 2007. Over the course of two days, panels will cover such topics as: * Copyright and licensing issues * Network neutrality and broadband policy * FCC's "rules of engagement" on payola * Sample clearance licensing process * The explosion of niche market genres * Wireless/music portability * The challenges of cultural preservation * Technologies that are bringing artists and fans closer together ...and more. The Summit will also include a special conversation with Marybeth Peters, Registrar, US Copyright Office, and keynotes by leading members of Congress. For general event information: http://www.futureofmusic.org/events/summit07/ To see all confirmed panelists: http://www.futureofmusic.org/events/summit07/panelists.cfm To see the summit schedule: http://www.futureofmusic.org/events/summit07/matrix.cfm Online registration is open; the regular 2-day registration rate is $199 per person. Discounted rates are also available for students: https://www.futureofmusic.org/events/summit07/regform.cfm Scholarships are available for working musicians. There are only a few left, so click here to apply! http://www.futureofmusic.org/events/summit07/scholarshipinfo.cfm : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : * miniLinks The week's noteworthy news, compressed. ~ At Rapleaf, Your Personals Are Public A new generation of search engines scans personal data from social networking sites. http://news.com.com/At+Rapleaf%2C+your+personals+are+public/2100-1038_3-6205716.html?tag=nefd.top ~ Open Government Without Shutting Doors The draft "European Convention on Access to Official Documents" has serious flaws. http://www.access-info.org/ ~ Ballot Machines Malfunction in Scotland More than 140,000 ballots were apparently spoilt in Scottish Parliamentary elections. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/scotland/6975346.stm ~ California Blocks RFID Implants in Workers The State Senate votes to ban "forced tagging of humans." http://science.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=07/09/03/1847248&from=rss ~ New Business Models in the Recording Industry The new head of Columbia Records has some interesting ideas. http://www.freedom-to-tinker.com/?p=1194 ~ Know Your Rights, These Are Your Rights What should you do when the RIAA comes calling? http://www.engadget.com/2007/08/31/know-your-rights-what-to-do-with-the-riaa-comes-calling/ ~ Debating the First Sale Doctrine EFF Senior Staff Attorney Fred Von Lohmann in a podcast discussion of "promo CD" sales. http://www.techliberation.com/archives/042738.php ~ Science Fiction Writers of America Abuses the DMCA A Cory Doctorow novel and other non-infringing works were ordered taken down by the SFWA. http://www.boingboing.net/2007/08/30/science-fiction-writ-1.html ~ Is It a Bird, or Is It a Plane? The UK is using unmanned drone helicopters for festival surveillance. http://www.bbc.co.uk/shropshire/content/articles/2007/08/16/v_festival_drone_feature.shtml ~ Cute, Orwellian Cartoon Cops Animated virtual cops are policing the web in China. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070828/ap_on_hi_te/china_web_police_1 : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : * Administrivia EFFector is published by: The Electronic Frontier Foundation 454 Shotwell Street San Francisco CA 94110-1914 USA +1 415 436 9333 (voice) +1 415 436 9993 (fax) http://www.eff.org/ Editor: Julie Lindner, Education Outreach Coordinator firstname.lastname@example.org Membership & donation queries: email@example.com General EFF, legal, policy, or online resources queries: firstname.lastname@example.org Reproduction of this publication in electronic media is encouraged. Signed articles do not necessarily represent the views of EFF. 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