Activism and innovation among Greeks started long before that country's debt crisis. In 2002, an Athens community fed up by slow and expensive service set up its own private internet. More than 1000 members of the Athens Wireless Metropolitan Network have free access to the web with speeds up to 30 times faster than commercial telecom carriers in the area. Given global concerns over the extent of the NSA’s surveillance program, independent “mesh” networks like the one in Athens could be adapted in other communities.
Facial recognition databases containing millions of are being scanned by local and federal government agencies to help curb everything from driver’s license fraud to terrorism. The growing library of faces also consists of non-offenders and innocent witnesses; many of the photos were taken without the subject’s consent or knowledge. For some, this accumulation of facial data is adding to growing concerns over individual privacy rights.
Craig Timberg is the Washington Post’s national technology reporter and has been covering this story along with Ellen Nakashima.
Privacy is a topic we’ve visited and revisited on this program, especially when it comes to the web community’s reaction to shifting policies on our social media and email accounts. Revelations made by former CIA and Booz Allen employee Edward Snowden about the National Security Agency’s sweeping electronic surveillance program could forever change the “privacy conversation.” Joining us with more on the internet’s reaction to the unfolding NSA story is Brady Carlson, our always-vigilant eye on social media and the world of the web.
As technology advances, our private lives more and more enter the public domain, causing some to call for more laws protecting our personal lives. Others say privacy is not so easily defined and warn against restricting the free flow of information. We’ll look at this debate, and several bills in the State Legislature tightening up privacy laws.
Part 1: The Science of Changing Your Mind/Sex and Religion
Ever wonder whether hard facts play a part in changing a person's mind? Turns out, not so much. Boing Boing's Maggie Koerth-Bakerwrote about the real influences on choice for The New York Times Magazine.
Greta Garbo is best known throughout her storied career for her plea from the 1932 film Grand Hotel. She later left the spotlight and chose to live the rest of her life privately and anonymously – an exit considered freakish by the public and a press which shadowed her the rest of her life. Today, we know far more about everyday citizens who’s allure falls far short of Garbo’s.
The expansion of forensic databases by US federal agencies. DNA collection of convicted felons is a well- publicized procedure. Recently released documents reveal that the department of homeland security and other federal agencies will be required to collect DNA from any person over the age of fourteen who has been detained -- regardless of criminal activity -- and that plans to include children under 14 are being explored.
Ever get the feeling that someone is watching you? Well, you may want to get used to it. While the US government has been putting un-manned drones to heavy use in war zones in recent years, the flying robots will soon be soaring American skies.
Many Web users have little idea about how, or when, they're being tracked. In this 2011 photo, Max Schrems of Austria sits with 1,222 pages about his activities on Facebook — the company gave him the file after he requested it under European law.