Skip to main content
Podcast Episode: Fighting Enshittification

EFFector - Volume 22, Issue 18 - EFF Has challenged Government’s “Back Door Wiretap”


EFFector - Volume 22, Issue 18 - EFF Has challenged Government’s “Back Door Wiretap”

EFFector Vol. 22, No. 18  June 12, 2009

A Publication of the Electronic Frontier Foundation
ISSN 1062-9424

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

In our 512th issue:

urging the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to hold that
the government's seizure of defendant Stephen Warshak's
email without a warrant violated the Fourth Amendment and
federal privacy statutes, as well as the Justice
Department's own surveillance manual. The government
accomplished this "back door wiretap" by illegally ordering
Warshak's email provider to prospectively "preserve" copies
of his future emails, a misuse the Stored Communications
Act, which is only supposed to be used for obtaining emails
already in storage with a provider.

In an amicus brief filed earlier this week, EFF argues that
the government's seizure violated federal privacy laws and
Warshak's Fourth Amendment expectation of privacy in his
email. As a result, the illegally seized emails should have
been suppressed by the district court where Warshak was
tried. All told, the government acquired over 27,000 emails
spanning over six months from Warshak's email provider, all
without probable cause.

For the full press release:

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

EFF Updates

* France Declares Three Strikes Unconstitutional
The Conseil Constitutionnel has declared the most important
parts of HADOPI unconstitutional and invalidated the
legislation's authority to issue termination orders to

* China's Spy in the Home
The Chinese Ministry of Industry and IT's announcement that
all PCs sold in China must include government-approved
filtering software is a profoundly worrying development for
online privacy and free speech in that country.

* Google Book Search Settlement: Foster Competition
What would create an eBook marketplace with an opportunity
for real competition? Escrow the scans.

* Cookies Crumbling
YouTube takes a small step to increase privacy of visitors by essentially ignoring account
cookies for videos viewed on

* EFF Comments on Child Safe Viewing Act
Recently, EFF filed comments with the FCC in connection
with the Child Safe Viewing Act of 2007, which requires the
FCC to conduct a study of V-chip-like blocking technologies
that might apply to more than just television viewing
such as Internet access.

* The Child Safe Viewing Act and Another DMCA Victim
TVGuardian and companies like it are unexpected victims of
DRM and the DMCA, but the conflict between copyright law
and companies that try to edit or block "offensive"
language or images in movies is nothing new.

* Hollywood Drives Us into the "Analog Sunset"
The AACS licensing authority has released the "Final
Adopter Agreement" it plans to enforce against consumer
electronics companies that make BluRay players (and any
other AACS devices that come along)

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :


~ Zotero Suit Dismissed
The legal battle between the proprietary EndNote academic
citation software and the open-source Zotero software has

~ Swedish Pirate Party Gains Seat in EU Parliament
The Pirate Party received a reported 7.1% of the votes in
Swedish elections, giving the party representation at the
European Parliament.

~ RIP: A Remix Manifesto Showing and Panel in NYC
This buzz-worthy documentary about remix and participatory
creativity is making its debut in New York City on Friday,
June 19.

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :


* IT Equipment for EFF Offices

We are looking for donations of the following new hard
drives to support EFF's office operations.  As thanks for
your donation, we can offer a free membership and, of
course, some cool swag.

Requested Items:

- 2 x 2TB external USB hard drives, preferably Western
Digital. Or a larger number of smaller drives with the same

- PATA IDE hard drives, 20GB or larger

Please contact if you can help!

* EFF at RoboGames in San Francisco

See EFF this weekend at the 2009 International RoboGames at
Ft. Mason's Festival Pavilion in San Francisco! Stop by and
say hello!

Booth Hours:
Friday, June 12: 12 PM - 6 PM
Saturday, June 13:  2 PM - 6 PM
Sunday, June 14: 12 PM - 6 PM

For more information:

* Help EFF Go to DEFCON!

EFF is looking for donations of airline tickets and hotel
points for the DEFCON hacking conference, as well as other
conferences and speaking engagements. If you have enough
airline miles for a free ticket and would like to send an
EFF staffer to a conference, let us know, and we will help
you with the process of making the reservation. Please note
that at this time we are unable to combine miles from
multiple individuals.  We are also looking for hotel
rewards points to help reduce our overall travel costs.

As a thanks for your donation, we can offer a free
membership and a mention in EFFector (if you'd like).
Please contact if you can help!

* Nominate a Pioneer for EFF's 2009 Pioneer Awards!

EFF established the Pioneer Awards to recognize leaders on
the electronic frontier who are extending freedom and
innovation in the realm of information technology. This is
your opportunity to nominate a deserving individual or
group to receive a Pioneer Award for 2009.  The
International Pioneer Awards nominations are open both to
individuals and organizations from any country.
Nominations are reviewed by a panel of judges chosen for
their knowledge of the technical, legal, and social issues
associated with information technology.

How to Nominate Someone for a 2009 Pioneer Award:

You may send as many nominations as you wish, but please
use one email per nomination. Please submit your entries
via email to We will accept nominations
until July 15, 2009.

Simply tell us:

1. The name of the nominee,

2. The phone number, email address or website by which the
nominee can be reached, and, most importantly,

3. Why you feel the nominee deserves the award.

Nominee Criteria:

There are no specific categories for the EFF Pioneer
Awards, but the following guidelines apply:

1. The nominees must have contributed substantially to the
health, growth, accessibility, or freedom of computer-based

2. To be valid, all nominations must contain your reason,
however brief, for nominating the individual or
organization and a means of contacting the nominee. In
addition, while anonymous nominations will be accepted,
ideally we'd like to contact the nominating parties in case
we need further information.

3. The contribution may be technical, social, economic, or

4. Nominations may be of individuals, systems, or
organizations in the private or public sectors.

5. Nominations are open to all (other than current members
of EFF's staff and operating board or this year's award
judges), and you may nominate more than one recipient. You
may also nominate yourself or your organization.

6. Persons or representatives of organizations receiving an
EFF Pioneer Award will be invited to attend the ceremony at
EFF's expense.

More on the EFF Pioneer Awards:

* Intern Opportunity!

EFF is looking for a summer intern to help in our
development and media departments. This is an unpaid,
full-time position.

Projects will include:
-Working on our annual report and contacting major donors
and foundations (40% of time);
-Assisting with membership fulfillment and bulk mailing
(40% of time); and
-Identifying and organizing press clippings (20% of time).

Excellent writing and editing skills, strong organizational
abilities, and the capacity to take instruction and run
with it is a must. Interest in development and/or public
relations as a career is a plus, as is knowledge and
familiarity with EFF's issues.

To apply, please send a cover letter, resume, and writing
sample to:

* Volunteer at EFF!

EFF is looking for volunteers to assist with operations in
our membership department. If you're quick, organized,
detail-oriented, and looking for a hands-on way to support
EFF, contact us today!

Duties include:

* Membership fulfillment
* Organizing premiums
* Print mailing
* Event assistance

Learn about fundraising operations in the nonprofit world
while supporting your favorite organization in a tangible
way! Interest in grassroots fundraising is a plus, as is
knowledge and familiarity with EFF's issues. Send a letter
of interest to

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :


EFFector is published by:
The Electronic Frontier Foundation

Sara Bassett, Membership Services Assistant

Membership & donation queries:

To support EFF:

General EFF, legal, policy, or online resources queries:

Back issues of EFFector are available at:

To change your email address:

Reproduction of this publication in electronic media is
encouraged. This newsletter is printed on 100% recycled

EFF appreciates your support and respects your privacy.

Back to top

JavaScript license information