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Eff Newsletter - June 20, 2006

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#1 tg1911


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Posted 21 June 2006 - 11:15 PM

EFFector Vol. 19, No. 23 June 20, 2006 editor@eff.org

A Publication of the Electronic Frontier Foundation
ISSN 1062-9424

In the 383rd Issue of EFFector:

* Action Alert - Tell Your Senator To Take Out The Flags
* EFF and Government Face Off Over 'State Secrets' in San
Francisco Courtroom
* Government Asserts It Is Above the Law in AT&T Case
* Copyright Battle Threatens Right to Surf and Email
* EFF Podcast #3: Line Noise Goes to Washington
* EFF Seeks Staff Technologist
* Support EFF Through GoodSearch.com
* miniLinks (11): Skype and CALEA
* Administrivia

For more information on EFF activities & alerts:

Make a donation and become an EFF member today!

Tell a friend about EFF:

effector: n, Computer Sci. A device for producing a desired

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

* Action Alert - Tell Your Senator To Take Out the Flags

The Communications, Consumers Choice, and Broadband
Deployment Act of 2006 is a monster name for a monster bill
-- in its latest form, it contains 159 pages of densely
plotted telecommunications reform. But while politicians
struggle with its major clauses, the RIAA and MPAA have
piggybacked their own agenda: the broadcast and audio flags,
which restrict innovation and legitimate use of recorded
digital radio and TV content. Your call today could force
the flags to find a home of their own.

The Committee markup of this bill is on Thursday, and your
Senator is on the Commerce Committee. One last push from
you could get Congress to remove the entertainment industry
mandates from the bill.


Please call your Senator (numbers below). Here's a sample

Hello, Senator Lastname's office.

Hi, I'm a constituent, and I'd like to let the Senator know
that I don't think the broadcast and audio flag provisions
belong in S. 2686, the Communications, Consumers Choice and
Broadband Deployment Act. These are anti-consumer
provisions, which would give the FCC far-reaching powers,
and give the entertainment industry a dangerous veto over
new technologies. I hope the Senator will insist on
excluding these provisions on Thursday.

Okay, I'll let the Senator know. Thanks.

Chairman Ted Stevens (AK), (202) 224-3004
John McCain (AZ), (202) 224-2235
Conrad Burns (MT), Main: 202-224-2644
Trent Lott (MS), (202) 224-6253
Kay Bailey Hutchison (TX), (202) 224-5922
Gordon H. Smith (OR), (202) 224 3753
John Ensign (NV), (202) 224-6244
George Allen (VA), (202) 224-4024
John E. Sununu (NH), (202) 224-2841
Jim DeMint (SC), (202) 224-6121
David Vitter (LA),(202) 224-4623
Co-Chairman Daniel K. Inouye (HI), (202) 224-3934
John D. Rockefeller (WV), (202) 224-6472
John F. Kerry (MA), (202) 224-2742
Barbara Boxer (CA), (202) 224-3553
Bill Nelson (FL), (202) 224-5274
Maria Cantwell (WA), (202) 224-3441
Frank R. Lautenberg (NJ), (202) 224-3224
E. Benjamin Nelson (NE), (202) 224-6551
Mark Pryor (AR), (202) 224-2353


Go to our Action Center, and send a letter to your Senator
explaining why he or she should insist on the removal of the

Text of the Bill:

To learn more about the broadcast flag:

To learn more about the audio flag:

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

* EFF and Government Face Off Over 'State Secrets' in San
Francisco Courtroom

Friday Hearing Over Motions to Dismiss AT&T Surveillance

San Francisco - On Friday, June 23, at 9:30 a.m., a federal
judge in San Francisco will hear oral arguments on the U.S.
government's motion to dismiss the Electronic Frontier
Foundation's (EFF's) class-action lawsuit against AT&T.

EFF's suit accuses the telecom giant of collaborating with
the National Security Agency (NSA) in illegal spying on
millions of ordinary Americans. The government contends
that even if the NSA program is illegal, the lawsuit should
not go forward because it might expose state secrets.

The judge will also consider AT&T's motions to dismiss the
case in Friday's hearing. Additionally, he will hear
requests from media organizations to intervene and unseal
critical evidence filed in the lawsuit.

Hepting v. AT&T

June 23, 9:30 a.m.

450 Golden Gate Ave., Courtroom 6
San Francisco, CA 94102

For more on EFF's case against AT&T:

For this release:

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

* Government Asserts It Is Above the Law in AT&T Case

Late last Friday night, the Government filed its reply
brief, providing a last round of written briefing in advance
of this week's hearing in our case against AT&T for
collaborating with the Government's surveillance program.
Finally the Administration has come out and flatly said what
it has hinted at throughout its arguments: that the program
is above the law.

The Government wrote that "the court -- even if it were to
find unlawfulness upon in camera, ex parte review -- could
not then proceed to adjudicate the very question of awarding
damages because to do so would confirm Plaintiffs'

Essentially the Government is saying that, even if the
Judiciary found the wholesale surveillance program was
illegal after reviewing secret evidence in chambers, the
Court nevertheless would be powerless to proceed. The
Executive has asserted that the Program, which has been
widely reported in every major news outlet, is still such a
secret that the Judiciary (a co-equal branch under the
Constitution) cannot acknowledge its existence by ruling
against it. In short, the Government asserts that AT&T and
the Executive can break the laws crafted by Congress, and
there is nothing the Judiciary can do about it.

We intend to vigorously oppose this radical assertion of
power. Please consider donating to EFF and help stop the
illegal spying.

Learn more about the case and read case documents:

Donate to EFF and help stop the illegal spying:

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

* Copyright Battle Threatens Right to Surf and Email

EFF Argues Against Broad Subpoena for User Identities

San Francisco - The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)
argued Tuesday that a battle between Internet real estate
services over copyrighted images should not threaten the
rights of users to surf web pages and send emails

The case began when CoStar, a real estate information
database, subpoenaed LoopNet, an online real estate forum,
over copyrighted photographs that appeared on LoopNet's
service. However, CoStar demanded not only the
identification of the uploaders of the offending images, but
also identification of "downloaders" -- using a dangerously
broad definition that includes both those who simply view
the photos online and those who merely email links to the
photos to others.

"If upheld, this subpoena would pierce the anonymity of
virtually anyone who has ever received, forwarded, or
clicked on a link to a webpage that happened at one time to
contain a thumbnail of a photograph to which CoStar owns the
copyright," said EFF Staff Attorney Corynne McSherry.

"Courts have long recognized that the right to engage in
anonymous communication is fundamental to a free society,"
said EFF Staff Attorney Jason Schultz. "CoStar wants to
strip Internet users of that anonymity just because they
clicked on a link."

The next hearing in CoStar v. LoopNet is set for August 2.

For the full amicus brief:

For this release:

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

* EFF Podcast #3: Line Noise Goes to Washington

Our latest EFF podcast reverses the polarity of the standard
media interview, as we quiz Washington journalist Drew
Clark, the National Journal's tech policy expert. He gives
us his impartial, frontline view of the battle for the
broadcast and audio flags in Congress.

To download and subscribe to Line Noise:

For EFF podcast PSAs:

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

* EFF Seeks Staff Technologist

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), an Internet civil
liberties nonprofit organization based in San Francisco, is
seeking a fulltime Staff Technologist to work in our Mission
District office.

EFF works in that difficult space where law and technology
collide. Unlike other nonprofit law firms, EFF is known for
our technical expertise. Along with our webmaster and
sysadmin, EFF's tech staff includes a couple of
technologists who translate technical issues to two major
audiences: 1) EFF attorneys, who need to understand the
specifics of how technology works in order to do their legal
work and 2) the general public, which looks to EFF to
explain what's really going on in non-technical jargon.

The staff technologist job includes being part of litigation
teams, writing white papers, attending technical meetings,
public speaking, preparing evidence or declarations to be
presented to courts, and working with the rest of EFF's
staff. Technical expertise is absolutely required, as is
great writing skill and a healthy respect for deadlines. As
part of the tech team, the staff technologist will sometimes
be asked to pitch in and assist with whatever tech issue
happens to be causing a problem at the moment. A
willingness to be a team player is a must. The job requires
some travel.


* Bachelor's degree in electrical engineering, computer
science or a related technical field (mathematics, physics,
etc.), or equivalent experience;

* Strong writing and public speaking skills. Must have
technical writing sample(s) illustrating the explanation of
a technical topic to an intelligent lay audience;

* Detailed knowledge of and experience using and
programming for at least one computer operating system;

* Detailed knowledge of and experience using at least one
(preferably low-level) programming language, such as C;

* Knowledge of or willingness to learn about information
security topics such as cryptography and digital rights
management (DRM); and

* Familiarity with Internet architecture and network

In addition, the ideal candidate will have:

* Experience with radio frequency technologies and

* Detailed knowledge of the Microsoft Windows platform
(development, debugging, reverse engineering, etc.);

* Hardware engineering experience;

* System administration or system programming experience;

* Experience presenting at technical conferences.

To apply, send a cover letter and your resume to
stafftech@eff.org. Please send these materials in a non-
proprietary format. No phone calls please! Principals

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

* Support EFF Through GoodSearch.com

GoodSearch.com is a new search engine that donates half its
revenues to charities, schools, and nonprofits designated by
its users. Before doing a search, simply enter "Electronic
Frontier Foundation" in the "I'm Supporting" box, and your
searches will contribute to our cause. And check out the
site on June 29, when EFF will be the featured Charity of
the Day.

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

* miniLinks
miniLinks features noteworthy news items from around the

~ Skype and CALEA
Tim Lee wonders if Skype's free US phone call plan isn't a
pre-emptive defense against overbroad CALEA requirements.

~ Musicians Who Get It
A catalog of musicians who understand how to make money in a
digital world.

~ Broadcast Flag and Network Neutrality in the Stevens Bill
Regulation: bad for telcos, but okay for consumer technology?

~ The Corruptibles - The Man Replies
Our esteemed opponents post their response to EFF's cartoon
on YouTube.

~ Fair Use Network
An online guide to creators for their rights under fair use.

~ John W. Dean on "State Secrets Privilege" and the NSA
Nixon's counsel on why cases against the illegal wiretapping
program should not be blocked.

~ Is the Broadcast Treaty Unconstitutional?
James Boyle, writing in the Financial Times, notes that the
constitution only grants IP rights to "authors and

~ Fighting the Australian DMCA
Linux Australia kick-starts a campaign.

~ Ulysses, James Joyce, and the Right to Research
The New Yorker peers at the unhappy tale of Joyce material
that was sucked out of the public domain, into the hands of
capricious executors.

~ Tech vs. Telcos in Washington
The challenges of Silicon Valley companies battling
entrenched telco lobbyists in D.C.

~ Pwning Washington
Cory of Linden Labs wonders if it isn't time gamers joined
the lobbying effort.

: . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . : . :

* Administrivia

EFFector is published by:

The Electronic Frontier Foundation
454 Shotwell Street
San Francisco CA 94110-1914 USA
+1 415 436 9333 (voice)
+1 415 436 9993 (fax)

Derek Slater, Activist

Membership & donation queries:

General EFF, legal, policy, or online resources queries:

Reproduction of this publication in electronic media is
encouraged. Signed articles do not necessarily represent the
views of EFF. To reproduce signed articles individually,
please contact the authors for their express permission.
Press releases and EFF announcements & articles may be
reproduced individually at will.

Current and back issues of EFFector are available via the
Web at:

Click here to unsubscribe or change your subscription

This newsletter is printed on 100% recycled electrons.
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#2 jgweed


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Posted 22 June 2006 - 11:07 AM

Further information about the broadcast flag hiding in the bill before the committee may be found at the Public Knowledge site:


Amidst all the Net Neutrality hubbub you might have missed the return of the Broadcast Flag, this time tucked into Senator Stevensí 151 page telecommunications bill, S.2686. Whatís an onerous copy protection scheme doing in the middle of a telecommunications bill? If youíre confused, you should be, itís a tactic designed to sneak in a regulation thatís been repeatedly rejected by both Congress and the courts.

The most recent version is worse than any before, without any real exceptions for fair use. Even worse, this time itís paired with an Audio Broadcast Flag that will cover digital and satellite radio too. Government technology mandates all around!

Whereof one cannot speak, thereof one should be silent.

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