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Tech at Night: Google, Apple, Adobe, FCC, FBI, TSA, Free Press

Tech at Night

So, while Google may have seen the light on Net Neutrality (which is actually, amusingly enough, making the far left sound like me), they still have other issues going on. The WiSpy Street View spying issue is still ongoing, with South Korea raiding their offices and Germany pressuring the firm to be more transparent and responsive to privacy complaints about the program.

Because as I said earlier today, asking Eric Schmidt about privacy is like asking Phillip Morris about smoking. The conflict of interest is inherent. Everyone who hides his identity from Google Analytics, Google Adsense, and every other Google program is costing the firm money.

Meanwhile, the EU and the FTC are targeting Apple for an incredibly ridiculous reason. You see, Steve Jobs has kept Adobe’s proprietary, intellectual property-protected Flash framework off of iOS (which drives the iPod Touch, iPad, and iPhone). Reasons given include CPU load which drains the battery, and no apparent need for it with the maturity of HTML 5 and CSS 3 technologies available in the Safari browser and its Webkit framework.

So naturally the governments are claiming that this open embrace of open, unrestricted technologies… harms competition. Yeah. Seriously. As far as I’m concerned, any government entity that forces Apple to license a closed, monopolized technology, or punishes Apple for failing to do so, loses all legitimacy forever in anything it ever says or does. That’s how irrational this is, to question the abandonment of closed technology in favor of industry standard, open technology as anti-competitive.

For crying out loud, Webkit is an open source framework. Anyone can grab the source and use it, even Adobe itself, thanks to its roots in KDE. Apple does virtually everything it can to open up Webkit and Safari, while Adobe has done nothing. And yet Adobe is the good guy here, per the FTC and the EU. What a joke. I cannot express enough how much this burns me up.

Meanwhile, at the FCC, the FCC has caught onto the latest buzzword that the rest of the Obama administration uses when it wants to grab power online: “Cybersecurity.” Hold onto your CAT-6 cables, because the government is coming, and it’s here to help.

The FBI isn’t here to help, though, unless you’re a big corporation making millions of dollars. According to TechDirt, the FBI has made missing persons a lower priority than copyright infringement cases, which aren’t even supposed to be criminal at all, but rather civil matters. This is a subsidy, pure and simple, but in this case is literally coming ahead of people’s lives and safety. Shame on the FBI.

Yet while the FBI goes nuts over copyright, TSA is going wild with file sharing as it saves half-naked pictures of travelers, despite promises that those pictures would not be stored in any form. That claim was of course laughable from the beginning, when even plain, old copiers store data these days. Do we miss the time before the TSA yet?

And to finish up tonight, let’s just get a reminder of the hypocrisy of Free Press. As much as they demand transparency for thee, they themselves tell plenty of lies and keep plenty of secrets. Free Press is having many meetings to lobby for its agenda that it’s not even bothering to disclose under the Lobbying Disclosure Act’s requirements. Oops. Good catch, Daily Caller.

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