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[liberationtech] EFF Resigns from Global Network Initiative

LilBambi lilbambi at gmail.com
Fri Oct 11 06:43:35 PDT 2013


I am sure that was a very hard move by EFF after being part of this
group for five years.

Corporate members being meddled with in regard to their security
practices about their internal privacy and security systems is no way
to effectively run any civil society that is hopeful of keeping people
safe regarding their human rights.

I hope others may also consider making the hard decision to join EFF
in leaving this group until they can be more effective. It is scary to
think that faith in a group of this nature can no longer be trusted
because of government meddling.

I think this is an important move. One that highlights just some of
the dangers of this meddling.

>From the article:

"We know that many within the industry do not like or approve of such
government interference, and GNI has, in statements, made it clear
that member companies want permission from the US government to engage
in greater transparency," EFF's International Director Danny O'Brien
and Director for International Freedom of Expression Jillian C. York
write in aletter to GNI leadership. "However, until serious reforms of
the US surveillance programs are in place, we no longer feel
comfortable participating in the GNI process when we are not privy to
the serious compromises GNI corporate members may be forced to make.
Nor do we currently believe that audits of corporate practice, no
matter how independent, will uncover the insecurities produced by the
US government's—and potentially other governments'—behavior when
operating clandestinely in the name of national security."



On Thu, Oct 10, 2013 at 4:33 PM, Yosem Companys <companys at stanford.edu> wrote:
> From: presslist at eff.org
>
> Electronic Frontier Foundation Media Release
>
> For Immediate Release: Thursday, October 10, 2013
>
> Contact:
>
> Jillian C. York
>   Director for International Freedom of Expression
>   Electronic Frontier Foundation
>   jillian at eff.org
>   +1 415 436-9333 x118
>
> EFF Resigns from Global Network Initiative
>
> Citing Concerns Over NSA’s Impact on Corporate Members, EFF
> Leaves Industry Group
>
> San Francisco - The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)
> today withdrew from the Global Network Initiative (GNI),
> citing a fundamental breakdown in confidence that the
> group's corporate members are able to speak freely about
> their own internal privacy and security systems in the wake
> of the National Security Agency (NSA) surveillance
> revelations.
>
> EFF has been a civil society member of the
> multi-stakeholder human rights group since GNI was founded
> in 2008 to advance freedom of expression and privacy in the
> global information and communication technologies sector.
> While much has been accomplished in these five years, EFF
> can no longer sign its name on joint statements knowing now
> that GNI's corporate members have been blocked from sharing
> crucial information about how the US government has meddled
> with these companies' security practices through programs
> such as PRISM and BULLRUN.
>
> "We know that many within the industry do not like or
> approve of such government interference, and GNI has, in
> statements, made it clear that member companies want
> permission from the US government to engage in greater
> transparency," EFF's International Director Danny O'Brien
> and Director for International Freedom of Expression
> Jillian C. York write in a letter to GNI leadership.
> "However, until serious reforms of the US surveillance
> programs are in place, we no longer feel comfortable
> participating in the GNI process when we are not privy to
> the serious compromises GNI corporate members may be forced
> to make. Nor do we currently believe that  audits of
> corporate practice, no matter how independent,  will
> uncover the insecurities produced by the US
> government's--and potentially other governments'--behavior
> when operating clandestinely in the name of national
> security."
>
> EFF's involvement with GNI included helping to define its
> founding principles over two years of negotiations;
> coordinating opposition to the United Kingdom's
> Communications Data Bill in 2011; releasing a paper
> addressing free-speech issues surrounding account
> deactivation and content removal; and collaborating with
> fellow members in internal international technical and
> policy analysis.  However, EFF can no longer stand behind
> the credibility of what had been one of GNI's most
> significant achievements--third-party privacy and freedom
> of expression assessments of service providers, including
> Google, Microsoft and Yahoo.
>
> Moving forward, EFF plans to continue to provide guidance
> to the GNI and engage companies directly, but as an
> external organization.  EFF supports the other
> organizations and individuals that continue to work within
> the GNI for the free speech and privacy rights of users
> worldwide.
>
> "Although EFF is taking a step back, GNI can still serve an
> important role as a collaborative project between human
> rights groups, companies, investors and academics," York
> said.  "If the United States government truly supports
> international 'Internet freedom,' it would recognize the
> damage its policies are doing to weaken such efforts and
> the world's confidence in American companies."
>
> For the text of the letter:
> https://www.eff.org/document/gni-resignation-letter-0
>
> For this release:
> https://www.eff.org/press/releases/eff-resigns-global-network-initiative
>
> About EFF
>
> The Electronic Frontier Foundation is the leading
> organization protecting civil liberties in the digital
> world. Founded in 1990, we defend free speech online, fight
> illegal surveillance, promote the rights of digital
> innovators, and work to ensure that the rights and freedoms
> we enjoy are enhanced, rather than eroded, as our use of
> technology grows. EFF is a member-supported organization.
> Find out more at https://www.eff.org.
>
>
>     -end-
>
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