Oliver Stone on Pokemon GO and surveillance capitalism

[…] Once the government had been hounded by Snowden, of course the corporations went into encryption, because they had to for survival, right? But the search for profits is enormous. Nobody has ever seen, in the history of the world, something like Google, ever. It’s the fastest-growing business ever, and they have invested huge amounts of money into what surveillance is, which is data-mining. They’re data-mining every person in this room for information as to what you’re buying, what it is you like, and above all, your behavior. Pokémon Go kicks into that. It’s everywhere. It’s what some people call surveillance capitalism. It’s the newest stage.

– Oliver Stone via Vulture

NSA data will soon routinely be used for domestic policing

The Washington Post published an opinion piece that quotes the ACLU of Massachusetts (via John Gruber):

What does this rule change mean for you? In short, domestic law enforcement officials now have access to huge troves of American communications, obtained without warrants, that they can use to put people in cages. FBI agents don’t need to have any “national security” related reason to plug your name, email address, phone number, or other “selector” into the NSA’s gargantuan data trove. They can simply poke around in your private information in the course of totally routine investigations. And if they find something that suggests, say, involvement in illegal drug activity, they can send that information to local or state police. That means information the NSA collects for purposes of so-called “national security” will be used by police to lock up ordinary Americans for routine crimes.


France wants to fine encryption

France’s lower house of parliament yesterday passed an amendment that would levy penalties against technology companies that do not provide access to encrypted data during terrorism investigations. The amendment, which has the support of right-wing politicians but is opposed by the socialist government of President François Hollande, was approved as part of a broader bill aimed at combatting terrorism and organized crime. – The Verge

If I were a French citizen I would be outraged that the government would use a national tragedy as emotional leverage to attempt to expand surveillance. I don’t think France’s problem is security, it’s economic inequality and racism.

Florida congressman wants to ban government iPhones

A Florida congressman has introduced a new bill that would forbid federal agencies from purchasing Apple products until the company cooperates with the federal court order to assist the unlocking of a seized iPhone 5C associated with the San Bernardino terrorist attack. – ArsTechnica

How childish. To propose that the government shouldn’t use a company’s products because that company refuses to compromise the product’s security is short-sighted and dumb. If anything, the uncompromising security should be a selling point to government agencies lacking transparency.

Apple won't bid for NFL streaming

Apple has decided it will not bid on the digital rights to stream the NFL’s “Thursday Night Football” package next season, according to Re/code.

The streaming rights to the NFL’s Thursday evening games could have helped set the Apple TV apart from competing streaming boxes, but Apple reportedly felt the package “isn’t enough to pull that off.” – MacRumors

Perhaps they’re not doing it because it doesn’t make business sense, but I hope they’re not doing it at least in part because it isn’t moral. Until the NFL change the rules surrounding collision and contact, any money earned from professional football is blood money.

NFL to sell streaming rights

This month, the pro football league intends to sell digital rights to the same games, and it should be nearing a decision shortly on which company will buy them. The NFL’s annual owners meeting starts in Florida on March 20, and sources say the league would like to have deals wrapped up by then. – The Verge

With the current rules and culture, considering the risk of injury to the players, this is blood money.

Fiat to Apple: Wait until the feeling passes

“If [Apple] have any urges to make a car, I’d advise them to lie down and wait until the feeling passes,” Marchionne told journalists. “Illnesses like this come and go, you will recover from them, they’re not lethal.” – Reuters via John Gruber

The auto-industry establishment recommends that Apple do what they do: nothing. I imagine Fiat are worried about Silicon Valley competing with them, and have done plenty of lying down in hopes that the feeling will pass. We’ll have to wait and see if this is recoverable or lethal, but history tells us that Palm and Blackberry underestimated Cupertino and the results were not good.