Stop Ring Surveillance

11/06/2014 Net Neutrality Vigil

Jeff Bezos, using his media empire, created the “porch pirate” narrative in order to push demand for Ring cameras. Having deployed them in communities across the state, he is now poised to sell access to this spy network to the police.

If the state proposed building surveilance cameras outside the front door of every house in every city, there would be justified outrage. But by making the Ring camera a consumer object, it becomes a status symbol, something enviable.

The purported AI technology behind it is nothing more than smoke and mirrors, powered by an underpaid team of thousands of human contractors to monitor live feeds from across the world. And on top of that, the software is insecure and unreliable!

The police departments of at least nine Massachusetts communities have signed data sharing agreements with Amazon. They are all over the state including Lowell, Malden, Wellesley and Westfield. We call on police departments statewide to reject the unproven and worthless Ring technology and immediately divest any current contracts with Amazon.

We also urge all residents to agitate for their community to ban municipal use of facial recognition technology and for our Commonwealth to adopt the State & Local Facial Recognition Tech Moratorium (S.1385 & H.1538). Bans in Somerville, Northampton and Brookline are only the start. Together we can end the use of such surveillance technology.

Here’s how you can help:

Everyone can submit written testimony in support of S.1385 & H.1538. Written testimony can be written as a letter addressed to the Chairs and the “Members of the Committee”.  Make sure to prominently indicate the bill number, and whether your testimony is in support or opposition to the bill. Include your name and address.

Committee Contact Information

Joint Committee on Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure:

  • Chair Paul R. Feeney – paul.feeney@masenate.gov
  • Chair Tackey Chan – Tackey.Chan@mahouse.gov

Joint Committee on the Judiciary:

  • Chair James B. Eldridge – James.Eldridge@masenate.gov
  • Chair Claire D. Cronin – Claire.Cronin@mahouse.gov​​​​​​​
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