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EFFector - Volume 26, Issue 20 - We're taking the fight against NSA spying to D.C.

 
 
EFFector! Electronic Frontier Foundation
 
 

In our 647th issue:

Speak Up Against the NSA's Mass Spying

On the weekend of October 26 — the 12th anniversary of the signing of the USA PATRIOT Act — thousands of people from across the political spectrum will unite in Washington, D.C. to take a stand against unconstitutional surveillance. Please join EFF and coalition partners for grassroots training and citizen lobbying on October 25th and a historic rally and petition delivery on October 26th.

There will be speakers, privacy experts, live music, and an opportunity to be part of the official delivery of the Stop Watching Us petition to Congress – a petition in which over a half million people have called for an end to mass, suspicionless surveillance.

RSVP on the coalition event page (privacy policy here).

Or just RSVP to EFF here.

Taking a Stand at the 2013 Pioneer Awards Ceremony

Each year, EFF's Pioneer Awards ceremony gives the digital civil liberties community a chance to honor the work of those who have bettered our world through remarkable innovation, activism, journalism, or leadership. This year, we were proud to celebrate the lives and work of James Love, Aaron Swartz, and Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras, and to hear an extraordinary keynote address from Professor Lawrence Lessig, as well as remarks from Taren Stinebrickner-Kauffman. See photos and listen to audio from the speeches.

Leaks Show NSA is Working to Undermine Encrypted Communications, Here's How You Can Fight Back

One of the most significant leaks to date regarding NSA spying revealed that the NSA has gone to extraordinary lengths to secretly undermine our secure communications infrastructure. These frightening revelations imply that the NSA has not only pursued an aggressive program of obtaining private encryption keys for commercial products, but that the agency has also attempted to put backdoors into cryptographic standards designed to secure users' communications.

EFF Updates

EFF's Cheat Sheet to Congress' NSA Spying Bills

We've put together a summary of the bills in Congress drafted after the June NSA leaks that have a chance to go forward. They try to fix Section 215 of the Patriot Act, curtail the secret law being created by the surveillance court overseeing the spying, and change how the FISA Court operates. Unfortunately, there is no bill in Congress with prospects of moving forward that tackles Section 702 of FISA -- the section used for PRISM.

Gems Mined from the Recent NSA Documents and FISA Court Opinions

In response to Freedom of Information Act lawsuits, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence released hundreds of pages of documents about the NSA telephone call record program. We're still reviewing the documents, but here are a few particularly interesting items we've uncovered so far.

Dear Playboy: Don't Abuse Trademark Law to Silence Critics

You'd think a controversial publisher like Playboy would recognize the importance of respecting free speech. But when feminist group FORCE: Upsetting Rape Culture created a parody site posing as the magazine, Playboy was quick to complain to the activists and their Internet service provider. The crux of Playboy's complaint? The activists had used the Playboy name and logo.

We're One Step Closer to Troll-Killing Patent Reform

Patent reform is heating up in Congress. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte released a second discussion draft aimed at preventing abusive patent troll litigation, and this draft shows a lot of promise.

Ultramercial: The Case We Love to Hate

For the second time, EFF asked the Supreme Court to hear the Ultramercial case and set the record straight on what inventions are too abstract to be patented.

Senate Revises Media Shield Law for the Better, But It’s Still Imperfect

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved a new version of the proposed media shield law, forging a compromise on who should be protected from having to reveal their journalistic sources in court. The bill is far from perfect, but the new language opens the door to non-mainstream journalists, as well as new forms of journalism that may develop in the future.

Data Broker Acxiom Launches Transparency Tool, But Consumers Still Lack Control

Acxiom, a data broker that collects 1,500 data points per person on over 700 million consumers total and sells analysis of such information, is trying to ward off federal privacy regulations by flaunting transparency -- a diluted term, in this case -- around user data.

The United Nations Meets 13 Principles Against Unchecked Surveillance

In a Geneva room full of representatives from nations around the world, some of the world's largest privacy organizations, including EFF, warned the United Nations of the dangers of the mass Internet spying being conducted by its own members.

Vietnam's Internet Censorship Bill Goes Into Effect

Internet freedom has gone from bad to worse in Vietnam as an online censorship law known as Decree 72 went into effect this month. It bans bloggers and users of social media from quoting, gathering, or summarizing information from press organizations or government websites.

New Amicus Brief Urges Massachusetts to Require Warrants for Cell Tracking

As the highest court in Massachusetts considers whether cell-site data is private in the context of the Fourth Amendment, we filed an amicus brief arguing that when the police want to be able to recreate your every step -- figuring out your patterns of movement, where you've been and with whom -- they must obtain a search warrant.

miniLinks

Washington Post: Large patent holders hate this reform proposal. That’s a good sign.

A number of large companies oppose Rep. Goodlatte's patent proposal. Timothy B. Lee highlights why this probably means it's a good bill.

Economist explores backdoor dealings

An excellent piece by The Economist explains why covertly weakening Internet security causes huge problems.

Techdirt: Spain ratchets up anti-piracy laws to even more ridiculous levels

Spain's anti-piracy efforts have taken a turn for the worst, tacking criminal penalties onto linking to infringing content.

Supported by Members

Our members make it possible for EFF to bring legal and technological expertise into crucial battles about online rights. Whether defending free speech online or challenging unconstitutional surveillance, your participation makes a difference. Every donation gives technology users who value freedom online a stronger voice and more formidable advocate.

If you aren't already, please consider becoming an EFF member today.

Donate Today

Administrivia

Editor: Adi Kamdar, Activist
editor@eff.org

EFFector is a publication of the Electronic Frontier Foundation.
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Membership & donation queries: membership@eff.org

General EFF, legal, policy, or online resources queries: info@eff.org

Reproduction of this publication in electronic media is encouraged. MiniLinks do not necessarily represent the views of EFF.

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Announcements

TPP, Copyright, and Users' Rights: Google Hangout with EFF, KEI, and Public Citizen

Webinar: Join EFF to learn more about the Trans-Pacific Partnership's copyright provisions and their impact on users, their effect on U.S. copyright law, and how we can work together to protect our access to knowledge, digital rights, and Internet freedom. We invite you to join us for a live Google Hangout.
October 1, 2013
eff.org/tpphangout

LA Podfest

In light of our recent Save Podcasting campaign against a bad patent troll, staff attorney Daniel Nazer will speak at the LA Podcasting Festival.
October 5, 2013
Los Angeles, CA

Drones and Aerial Robotics Conference

EFF activists Trevor Timm and Parker Higgins will present a primer on using transparency laws to release information about domestic drone programs, as well as a follow-up to their 2012 "Pwn The Drones" presentation on drone hacks.
October 11-13, 2013
New York, NY

Techno-Activism Third Mondays

Techno-Activism Third Mondays are informal meetups that occur on the same date in many cities worldwide. It is designed to connect techno-activists and hacktivists who work on or with circumvention tools and are interested in anti-censorship and anti-surveillance technology.
October 21, 2013
San Francisco, CA

Festival Universitario

Activist Adi Kamdar will speak to students about activism and digital rights at the Festival Universitario in Brasilia.
November 7-9, 2013
Brasilia, Brazil

Thanks, Bassnectar Fans!

EFF received $30,000 as part of the Dollar Per Bass Head campaign. Thanks to Bassnectar and his awesome fans for their support!

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