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Interviews: Ask Jennifer Granick What You Will

samzenpus posted about 8 months ago | from the go-ahead-and-ask dept.

Your Rights Online 58

samzenpus (5) writes "Jennifer Granick was one of the primary crafters of a 2006 exception to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and served as the EFF's Civil Liberties Director. She has represented many high profile hackers during her career and was sought out by Aaron Swartz after his arrest. She currently serves as the Director of Civil Liberties for the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. Jennifer has agreed to answer your questions about security, electronic surveillance, data protection, copyright, and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Please limit yourself to one question per post."

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What do you think about slashdot beta? (4, Funny)

larry bagina (561269) | about 8 months ago | (#47066761)

What do you think about slashdot beta?

Re:What do you think about slashdot beta? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067071)

And as a woman interested in technology and law: are you fat and/or post-menopausal?

fancy (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47066809)

fancy a fuck

What can be done to fix the DMCA? (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47066815)

As pretty much anyone who has ever used YouTube (or any similar service) knows, the DMCA has a lot of issues. For one, there's the fact that individuals or companies who file false DMCA claims, which are supposedly punishable under the law, are never punished. Another would be the unfair application of the DMCA - partners and other monetized channels on YouTube will (almost) never have their videos taken down from a single DMCA claim, even if a video made under the same circumstances and containing similar content would be taken down on a non-partner channel if a DMCA notice was ever filed.

Is the EFF planning to do anything lobbying-wise to fix the DMCA? If so, what in your opinion would be the way to go about fixing it?

Slashtard Beta (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47066859)

So, Jennifer, do you hate the Beta as much as I do?

What's it like to work in a man's field? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47066863)

Is it like being a wowan sportscaster in the locker room right after a basketball game?

Re:What's it like to work in a man's field? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067311)

Is it like being a wowan sportscaster in the locker room right after a basketball game?

Odd how you never see men sportscasters in women's locker rooms. That'd be inappropriate huh?

Women want equality but they don't want it badly enough.

European "right to be forgotten" (4, Interesting)

Chrisq (894406) | about 8 months ago | (#47066867)

What are your views on the European "right to be forgotten"? Is the recent court ruling that search engines should filter results to outdated or irrelevant information workable? Is freedom of speech more important than an individual's freedom not to be talked about?

Re:European "right to be forgotten" (2)

geekoid (135745) | about 8 months ago | (#47067357)

"...an individual's freedom not to be talked about?"
there is no freedom or right to not be talked about. Basically you are saying if the government should prevent people from talking about other people. i.e. censorship.

Re:European "right to be forgotten" (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about 8 months ago | (#47067903)

Could you explain the "right to be forgotten" concisely and effectively so that people don't assume it grants "freedom not to be talked about"? Every story on Slashdot and every other news site with comments gets hundreds of angry responses from people who have completely the wrong idea about it.

How to fight harder and win (4, Interesting)

globaljustin (574257) | about 8 months ago | (#47066881)

Ms. Granick, thanks so much for taking the time, your expertise on this issue is very valuable!

I was an intern on Capitol Hill and was able to sneak into the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on updates to the DCMA where Metallica and Shaun Fanning testified.

My question: On issues of digital technology and freedom how can we, the people of the US, fight harder & win?

What represents a "win" against the RIAA/MPAA or a "win" for net neutrality? If all we need is Congress to pass Common Carriage why is it so difficult to get done?

Ever since I attend that Senate Judiciary hearing, and I learned the issues, I realized it's always the same groups opposing digital freedom. What do we have to do to fix these issues forever so we can move on to better problems?

Is it fixible? (2)

i kan reed (749298) | about 8 months ago | (#47066899)

Is the US approach to the internet fixable within the confines of the political system we have?

Re:Is it fixible? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067671)

You meant:

Is the US approach to government fixable within the confines of the political and judicial system we have?

Put it another way (this is a rephrasing, not another question): When is the Justice Department going to spend as much time and effort going after the HBGarys, the Bank of Americas, the Palantirs, the Bericos, the Hunton&Williams, etc as it does hounding dissidents to putative suicides or harassing reporters until they respond to threats with threats? Is there any way the existing Central Committee/Revolving Door/Interlocking Boards of Directors of elitists currently running the show, and please note I include reformers such as yourself here, Ms. Granick, will ever clean up their acts, or are we doomed to patching and fixing forever every asinine and disengenous premise enshrined into law with more of the same, the only apparent benefit being job security for members of the club?

There, fixed that for you.

Can Privacy ever actually be Maintained? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067043)

With the collection of metadata that a user intentionally or even unwittingly divulges is individual privacy even possible online?

Re:Can Privacy ever actually be Maintained? (4, Interesting)

Noah Haders (3621429) | about 8 months ago | (#47067441)

a follow on to this that is more personal. Without a doubt EFF has been owned 20 times over by NSA, not to mention anybody who works as a director of internet civil civil liberties. Personal stuff too. emails, bank records. Email accounts of your family, friends, and friends of friends (3 hops)! And unlike most NSA snooping which seems to be captured for the glee of capturing, your stuff is probably pretty closely monitored.

do you think about this or worry about this? does it change your online behavior, or relationships with friends and family?

M&A of TV/Internet providers (1)

Kevin by the Beach (3600539) | about 8 months ago | (#47067045)

Do you see our government acting in the interest of the ( individual / corporation ) with regards to mergers of TV & Internet providers?

Serious (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067069)

What would rather do, cut off your nipples or use Beta.

Goodbye nipples!

ECJ Google Spain v AEPD: privacy vs expression? (2)

xavdeman (946931) | about 8 months ago | (#47067105)

Hey Jennifer,

You must deal with the clash between freedom of information (and expression), like in the Schwartz-case, and the right to privacy (and to be forgotten, even by agencies such as the NSA), every day.
What is your opinion on the Court of Justice of the European Union's Grand Chamber judgement in C-131/12 (Google Spain v AEPD and Mario Costeja Gonzalez)? The court ruled that the fundamental rights to privacy and data protection should, ‘as a rule’ override ‘not only the economic interest of the operator but also the interest of the general public in finding that information’. However, in certain circumstances, there may be a preponderant interest of the general public (for instance, if the individual concerned was a public figure) [97].[...], this is an assessment which must be made by the national court [98].
One commentator (Guy Vassall-Adams [eutopialaw.com] ) noted that: "It appears that the court never asked itself if these large corporations can be relied on to protect the public interest in freedom of expression, taking a principled stance in response to unmeritorious complaints, as opposed to simply following the easy (and cheap) course of erasing information on request. Across the Atlantic and around the world other countries will look on us with bemusement as they read information which we are denied. This judgment is profoundly harmful to the operation of the internet and a betrayal of Europe’s great legacy in protecting freedom of expression."
Do you think the Court struck a good balance between the rights to privacy and freedom of expression? Can we expect a similar ruling by the US Supreme Court?
What is your opinion on circumventory measures such as ChillingEffects [chillingeffects.org] , which Google uses in the US, and lists all DMCA-takedowns, and in which Stanford is also involved, in the context of personal data (as opposed to MP3s of copyrighted music)?
What is your opinion on the Streisand effect of such cases (everybody knows that Mario Costeja Gonzalez was at one time involved in bankruptcy proceedings, because this is in ECJ case).
Thank you for doing this interview.

Re:ECJ Google Spain v AEPD: privacy vs expression? (3, Interesting)

xavdeman (946931) | about 8 months ago | (#47067249)

Hey Jennifer, I just thought of another question.

What is your opinion on cyber bullying and litigation?
E.g. a bully posts sensitive personal data about someone, and he or she wants that data to be "forgotten" by search engines, web hosts etc. (data processors).
To obtain this result, he or she would have to go to a court, and because of the fact that most court proceedings are public and published (in the EU, at least, and let's assume this is concerning an adult, because in most countries, court cases involving minors are closed), this information would be even more widely broadcast, through the public records of the courts.
Is this a legal catch 22, do you see any solutions for these kinds of victims?

Role of DMCA and free markets (4, Interesting)

JohnnyComeLately (725958) | about 8 months ago | (#47067119)

Do you see free market innovation thriving with DMCA despite the apparent lack of innovation?

Articulation of my question: When I buy a car, I can modify it. If people like my modification they can view it at my leisure and tinker themselves. GM doesn't sue me, and if I open a business to work on other GM cars to do similar GM vehicle modifications, then I have little legal exposure. However, with DMCA, GM can shut down a video if it's "suspected" I've infringed on a digital asset, and I can't legally sell modifications of their digital asset. This is why we see every new technology for digital streaming of data run a gauntlet of legal hurdles, which in turn stifles new innovation in the area of digital property.

End-game? (1)

pla (258480) | about 8 months ago | (#47067121)

We appear to slowly lose our formerly-well-established pre-digital rights at every turn; with every small victory such as your own DMCA exemption, we suffer another huge loss such as ACTA. Given that, what do you see as the best attainable outcome for our current struggle to preserve privacy and fair use rights for the general public? I don't expect us to reach "GNU/Utopia", of course, but do we have any real hope of avoiding Stallman's Right to Read [gnu.org] as the only possible long-term outcome?

Do Not Track? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067145)

Hello, Ms. Granick.

Just a few articles below this one is a story from Computerworld bemoaning the "shattered" state of the Do Not Track header. As I recall, the EFF was a proponent behind Do Not Track, and if I remember right participated in the initial creation of the standard. The EFF is quoted in the Computerworld article as saying that Do Not Track was too weak of a standard.

My question is this: What would need to go into Do Not Track to make it widely acceptable, both by privacy groups like the EFF and by advertisers and web hosts, as well as effective in stopping tracking cookies as a means of surveillance?

Re:Do Not Track? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067705)

My question is this: What would need to go into Do Not Track to make it widely acceptable, both by privacy groups like the EFF and by advertisers and web hosts

What you need is a Can Not Track. Something like lots of privacy add-ons combined with Tor and other not-yet-devised methods to make tracking data completely useless. A truly effective measure can be recognized because it will not be "acceptable" to advertisers.

Question About The DCMA. (1)

mlauzon (818714) | about 8 months ago | (#47067169)

Why do American companies seem to think that the DCMA applies outside of the USA, when it is only for Americans in America..?!

Re:Question About The DCMA. (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 8 months ago | (#47067365)

Trade agreements say otherwise.

Re:Question About The DCMA. (1)

mlauzon (818714) | about 8 months ago | (#47071545)

Doesn't matter about agreements, it's a US only law, but of course the US thinks it's the leader of the world and only its laws matter!

Constitutional privacy amendment (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067219)

What are the pros and cons of amending the Constitution to enshrine the right to privacy?

Re:Constitutional privacy amendment (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067255)

... as in, expanding the definition from the 4th Amendment of "papers" to include electronic communications like email and cell phone calls?

Why didn't you save Aaron Swartz? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067265)

He sought you for your help, and you failed him. His blood is on your hands.

sleeping... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067339)

How do you sleep?

What's one thing we should do? (4, Interesting)

twocows (1216842) | about 8 months ago | (#47067349)

I think most of us here agree with the EFF's mission, but we don't really know what to do aside from donate to the EFF to help. What would be the most important thing that we can do to help change things for the better?

Ben Affleck? (-1, Flamebait)

larry bagina (561269) | about 8 months ago | (#47067377)

First off, I loved your work in Alias. I hope it makes it to the big screen someday. Anywho, I understand you're married to Ben Affleck. Now, I assume he's homosexual and you're just his beard but wikipedia says you have three kids. Is Matt Damon the father? I mean, allgedly Affleck and Damon wrote Good Will Hunting together but we know it was really Matt (while Ben smoked up and ate cheetos). So I figure he probably fathered your kids and that asshole Affleck is once again taking credit he doesn't deserve.

Re:Ben Affleck? (1)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | about 8 months ago | (#47068135)

-1 Offtopic or +5 Funny? XD

Prom? (0)

gstoddart (321705) | about 8 months ago | (#47067397)

LOL ... Will you go to Prom with me?

I kid, I kid. I'm sure my wife wouldn't approve.

Reconcile wisdom vs. technological savviness (3, Interesting)

OSULugan (3529543) | about 8 months ago | (#47067475)

Slashdot has had a lot of discussion recently with regard to the (perception of the) Supreme Court justices (apparent) lack of technological savviness due to their age. This is pervasive throughout all of our government, from federal to local and throughout all three branches. Classically, this was desirable for the wisdom that comes with age, the prevention of coercion for the independent Supreme Court and/or the perks that could come from having a representative with seniority.

How do you see evolution of our government in a future where technological advances come at an ever increasing pace?

I.e., how does our government reconcile the need for wisdom in governance with the need for an understanding of the technology in the modern world, and the application of laws against it?

Gmail privacy (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47067487)

What are your thoughts on Google's filings in court that claim email users "have no reasonable expectation of privacy", as well as recent admissions that they have been data mining student emails for several years?



Where is personal privacy going? (4, Interesting)

Spyder (15137) | about 8 months ago | (#47067701)

Ms Granick, I'd really appreciate your perspective of where you think the personal privacy equilibrium will be.

What personal privacy protections do you believe will survive the next 20 years in the US?

Do you believe that there will be individual control of personal information that will have suffice force of law to be functional meaningful in the US?

Do you believe those protections will be useful if the information is stored outside the US?

Thanks for the ./interview.

Re:Where is personal privacy going? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47072105)

> Re:Where is personal privacy going?
Sadly, it's gone.

Please limit yourself to one question per post (1)

wonkey_monkey (2592601) | about 8 months ago | (#47067801)

Please limit yourself to one question per post.

What if I don't want to? Hmm?

Why wasn't Aaron Swartz saved? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47068147)

You must feel awfully guilty. He asked you for your help and you didn't help him.

Xerox'd Wed Sites, or Web Site Duplicity? (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 8 months ago | (#47068207)

Why is it that web sites like FaceBook, and or Pinterest do not suffer web site duplications?

Re Aaron Shwartz unfortunate suicide (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47068219)

How do you think competent legal counsel could have prevented that tragedy?

I can't help but think if it was handled like a normal legal matter, and not as an vehicle to get your name on slashdots front page, the stress may not have driven him to his death.

Aaron Swartz was my friend, and you failed him. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47068321)

Had you tried to save him instead of promoting yourself, he might be alive today. Shame on you. SHAME ON YOU!!!

Is it time? (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 8 months ago | (#47068341)

Is it time to water the tree of Liberty?

Re:Is it time? (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 8 months ago | (#47068933)

First of: Your petition expired, so I could read what it was about.
Read the whole quote.

The most important and relevant part today is:
"The people cannot be all, and always, well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented, in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions, it is lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty"

That is what is going on. there is a growing segment of the population are being giving incorrect information, and when shown to be wrong they grow discontented.
I can not tell you how many angry people over something in government is almost entirely due to their ignorance.

" The part which is wrong will be discontented, in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. "
I have never read anything the describe the attitude of people on the internet more so then that.

People are wrong they find an echo chamber and when presented with actual facts they get angry and say stupid things like:
"is it time to water the tree of Liberty?"

Re:Is it time? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47070451)

How you like that big government dick in your ass?

Re:Is it time? (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about 8 months ago | (#47073523)

I'm not angry over something in government; I'm dismayed at the entire movement of society. This isn't "I don't understand 9/11 so I think it was an inside job!" time.

There are no absolutes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47068873)

Ms. Granick,

Privacy and security will always be in some conflict. And academic discussions can be interesting. But what level of civil liberties are you *personally* willing to give up (and, by implication, expect others to give up) to achieve the level of security you expect?

Campaign Finance Reform (1)

RR (64484) | about 8 months ago | (#47068935)

It seems that no matter which party we vote for, we get either corporate-funded stooges or patronizing paternalists, like Dianne Feinstein of California. The media are complicit in this miscarriage of justice with their anointed "serious" candidates and "wasted" votes, for various reasons probably including the high amounts of money that they receive during campaigns.

So, what do you think about Larry Lessig and his change of focus from free culture to Congressional corruption?

digital public library + (C) (1)

bzipitidoo (647217) | about 8 months ago | (#47069459)

When will public libraries be allowed to go fully digital? Put the entire Library of Congress and more online, for free, no copyright restrictions. Research would be freely available and easily found, not locked behind paywalls. It would be a huge public good. But I can't see this ever happening while copyright law exists. Seems like the law is slower than glacial, and lawmakers' thinking is stuck in the 1950s and turned towards money, not the public good. I think it would be best to abolish copyright, perhaps replacing it with some other kind of right, something more enforceable and fairer, like a "public performance right". Copyleft would also change. Though I don't think it will happen that way. Instead, in 100 years I suspect we'll still have some law called copyright, but it will be so radically altered that the name won't fit it any more.

Don't feel too sure about Google books either. A private corporation gets to index everything, while we sit idle and wonder what price Google will eventually slip us.

The most offensive part of the publishing industry is research. We, the people, pay for all this research out of our tax money, employing thousands of professors and researchers at hundreds of universities to do research and review each others' works at our expense, then these private publishers are allowed to lock it all away. That's the very thing Aaron Swartz was protesting.

Penalties for false claims (1)

Mistakill (965922) | about 8 months ago | (#47070225)

Ms. Granick can you say why there is no penalty for false claims (often repeated and obvious false claims) about ownership of content. This seems to be one of the biggest issues of contention, if people were to accept that the DCMA itself is acceptable

Handling of PII by non-health private and public e (1)

bytestorm (1296659) | about 8 months ago | (#47070521)

Is it feasible to legally obligate all entities operating in the USA to abide by all safeguards and regulations required of HIPAA data if the data they have could be so classified?

DMCA and the Safe Harbor provision (1)

QuasiSteve (2042606) | about 8 months ago | (#47070823)

As you will probably have read, Slashdot readers in general are not a fan of the DMCA (and rightly so).

However, the DMCA also has the Safe Harbor provision, which essentially means a service can say "it wasn't me", drop the content being complained about, and have that be the end of it unless the user decides to challenge the claim - which is either quickly granted if it's reasonable (e.g. 'fair use') or the user just shrugs it off and re-uploads the video (using a new account, if their existing account gets blocked), thus ensuring that while copyright holders may try to keep content off of these services, they ultimately will fail, without exception for popular content - from songs to full movies to sports events to leaked tapes'o'naughtiness.

I have several questions on this phenomenon, unfortunately I can ask only one, so I will ask this: Was that the expected/intended consequence of the Safe Harbor provision all along?

DMCA and Unlocking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47071189)

In discussion of cell-phone locking, an argument was widely disseminated in the press that cell-phone unlocking would be limited by DMCA's anti-circumvention provision (1201). However, the argument has never quite made sense to me, and I'm not sure if it's because (a) the argument is flawed, (b) the presentation in the press is incomplete/lazy, or (c) I don't understand the argument. Perhaps you could help break down this argument.

Let's suppose Amy purchases a BananaInc UberPhone from VeritableWireless. VeritableWireless sold the phone at a discounted price because Amy agreed to 2-year service contract (with an early-termination-fee). The phone, of course, runs BananaInc's famous UberOS firmware, and the firmware includes a carrier-locking feature (because VeritableWireless only sells phones with carrier-locking features). As with most carrier-locking features, the UberOS firmware has two major properties: (1) the radio-receiver will only communicate with VeritableWireless unless (2) someone goes to the appropriate unlock screen and types in the appropriate code. (Mind you -- this unlock mechanism is a built-in feature created by the firmware's copyright holder, BananaInc.) So let's suppose Amy goes to the appropriate screen and types in the appropriate code.

Has Amy circumvented a copyright-protection mechanism? What copyright-protection mechanism? What covered-work was being copy-protected? How would new power did Amy gain which would enable her to infringe a copyright?

I guess there's a fundamental gap for me because cell phone locks are not copy-protection mechanisms. DVD-CSS, AACS, and FairPlay are copy-protection mechanisms; circumventing DVD-CSS (etal) would enable one to make copies and to infringe a copyright, so I understand how it raises DMCA's section 1201. But I just don't get how a cell-phone carrier-lock is relevant to copy-protection.

Always been meaning to ask (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47071275)

Do you have daddy issues?

The sad death of Aaron Swartz. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47072127)

Why didn't you help him? Why did you let him die?

MaydayPAC / MayOne.US (1)

Mathinker (909784) | about 8 months ago | (#47073021)

What do you think about MayOne [mayone.us] , aka MaydayPAC, Lawrence Lessig's attempt to reform US democracy (on the Federal level)? Were you surprised how quickly it reached the initial funding goal? Do you think it has a chance of actually making a significant change?

Re: MaydayPAC / Aaron Swartz (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 months ago | (#47073161)

None of this is important. What IS important is how she let Aaron Swartz die and did nothing to save him. Nothing!!!

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