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First POST: Turning Points

BY Micah L. Sifry | Wednesday, March 26 2014

Turning Points

  • NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden welcomed the news that President Obama was planning to propose legislation to curtail the agency's mass collection of phone metadata. In a statement released by the ACLU, he said,

    "President Obama has now confirmed that these mass surveillance programs, kept secret from the public and defended out of reflex rather than reason, are in fact unnecessary and should be ended. This is a turning point, and it marks the beginning of a new effort to reclaim our rights from the NSA and restore the public's seat at the table of government."

  • Trevor Timm reports that a competing piece of legislation coming from Republican Rep. Mike Rogers called the "End Bulk Collection Act" would actually expand the NSA's power "to search Americans' data while in the hands of the phone companies."

  • In Esquire, Michael Maiello argues that it's time for an immunity deal for Snowden.

  • Surveillance is still the business model of the Internet, writes Bruce Schneier. In other words, don't believe tech company hype that they're really tightening up on user security measures.

  • Turkey's Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan wants about "700 contents" removed from Twitter, but he said the company had only agreed to remove "one or two." Addressing the company, he said, "If you don't correct the issues, we'll close the site down."

  • Our Carola Frediani digs further into Turkey's leaky Twitter ban and the ongoing battle between the government and anti-censorship activists like Telecomix, Anonymous and RedHack.

  • In Slate, Jamelle Bouie says that Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) is right: "It is ironic that the first African-American president has overseen a mass expansion of the government’s surveillance powers—powers that, in an earlier form, were used to spy on almost every figure in the civil rights movement."

  • First Lady Michelle Obama is a "mommy blogger," Dylan Byers reports. More Obamacare promotion, that is.