Archive by month: October 2015

I'm long overdue for a FOIA post, this one in particular. It was a FOIA/PA request to the TSA, who responded in a mere 13 months. I thought this was extraordinarily slow at the time, but perhaps not -- this evening, I wrote to half a dozen agencies where I have outstanding FOIA requests, several of which have gone for more than a year without activity. Patience is indeed a virtue, especially for the casual FOIA requester. I wrote to the TSA because I wanted to know whether my name appeared...
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Cory Doctorow (science fiction author and Co-Editor of Boing Boing tech blog) and others spoke at the Ford Hall Forum at Suffolk University on Tuesday, October 13th. The talk was entitled The Remote-Controlled Society and is part of Cory's discussion of the Coming War on General Computing. The Ford Hall Forum has now released the full video of the talk. Thanks to them, Suffolk University’s College of Arts & Sciences and the Boston Literary District for sponsoring this event and making th...
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With all of the talk about presidential candidates, you wouldn't know it, but in 2016 Massachusetts will elect 200 members of the General Court (aka the Massachusetts legislature). Since the 2000 election, on average over half of the candidates have not have an opponent in the general election. With a stat like that, it is easy to conclude that we live in a democracy in name only. We want your help to change that! At 3pm this Sunday, Nov. 1st, we will plan our 2016 campaign, especially gettin...
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Following on the cloture vote on CISA, the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act, the Senate is again considering amendments to it and a final vote. While Massachusetts Senators Warren and Markey, as well as Senators Leahy and Sanders from Vermont voted against it.  In the rest of New England, no one else voted against it. CISA is a awful bill that will allow the NSA to collect our communications without even anonymizing it, as even a former intel official admitted. This fight is not ov...
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Earlier today, the Senate's cloture vote on CISA, the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act, passed 83 to 14.  It now advances to an up or down vote soon and reconciliation with the House version.  Thankfully, the effort to expand the CFAA to allow the government to prosecute security researchers for finding security vulnerabilities in computers did not pass. Massachusetts Senators Warren and Markey voted against it.  In the rest of New England, only Senators Leahy and Sanders from Vermont vo...
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The September cryptoparty in Somerville had a good turn out and many people learned how to run a mesh network from their computer. The next Somerville cryptoparty will be Wednesday, October 28th. It will be from 6-9pm at Parts and Crafts, 577 Somerville Ave, Somerville, MA 02143. The topic is: Imagining What The Internet Will Look Like in 5 Years. It will also have key signing and there will be people who are happy to answer your computer and networking security questions. Hope you can mak...
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Yesterday, the Senate started debating CISA, the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act. The Senate reconvenes at 9:30am and it will likely vote on it today. Now is the time to call Senator Warren at 202-224-4543, and Senator Markey at 202-224-2742 and tell them to vote NO!  If you don't live in Massachusetts, visit Decide the Future to contact your senator. CISA is a surveillance bill that would immunize corporations from liability if they share your personal data with the government.  Specif...
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CISA, the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act, is expected to come up this afternoon for a vote in the Senate. Please call Sen. Warren at 202-224-4543, and Sen. Markey at 202-224-2742 and tell them to vote NO! CISA is a surveillance bill that would immunize corporations from liability if they share your personal data with the government.   Specifically it allows companies to automatically and simultaneously transfer your data to the DHS, NSA, FBI,  and local police with all of your persona...
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Cory Doctorow (science fiction author and Co-Editor of Boing Boing tech blog) and others spoke at the Ford Hall Forum at Suffolk University on Tuesday, October 13th. The talk was entitled The Remote-Controlled Society and is part of Cory's discussion of the Coming War on General Computing. While the Ford Hall Forum will be releasing video of the full discussion and Q&A, we were able to record the opening statements by Cory Doctorow, Rebecca Curtin (Assistant Professor of Law with a focus on...
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Back in March, the Massachusetts Pirate Party chose to endorse the "We the People Act" (currently H.3127). After a series of discussions internally, and with our friends at PassMassAmendement, we've decided to rescind our endorsement. The We the People Act has some very nice language, and we're very much on board with the idea that "Corporations are not people and money is not speech". Our objection to the bill comes from this paragraph: Be it further Resolved that if Congress does not...
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