Category: English entry

Evaluation of data retention directive

The EU has evaluated the data retention directive (DRD) and come to the conclusion that is serves its purpose and is working efficiently. However if one looks at the draft report (via, a few questions remain, mainly concerning the methods of the evaluation and some particular statements.

As a consequence, the evidential value of retained data must be assessed on a case-by-case basis in the light of all the relevant factors of a case. ….. Since law enforcement resources are limited the fact that retained data are used, signify they were deemed relevant. …. The retention of data is considered proportionate if it has considerable law enforcement relevance. (pp. 7)

Erkennt man Sie anhand Ihres Browsers? Teil 2

Ab sofort gibt es das aktuelle White Paper der Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) zum Thema Browser Uniqueness. Das Ergebnis in aller Kürze:

PRIVACY PROJECT, which demonstrated that more than
8 in 10 people use browsers with unique, trackable
signatures. Having a distinct browser signature means your
individual movements on the web may be easier to track,
and several companies are already selling products that
claim to use browser fingerprinting to help websites
identify users and their online activities.

Conference: Risky profiles: Societal dimensions of forensic uses of DNA analysis

Goethe University Frankfurt am Main, 2-3 July 2010

Registration is free, but places are limited; please contact Barbara Prainsack at by 15 June 2010 at the latest.

Forensic uses of DNA technologies have become crucial elements of national systems of criminal justice. In addition, as a result of growing transnational mobility and the global use of information and communication technologies crime and crime prevention issues are increasingly addressed by agencies and policy actors beyond the national state. In the European context, the so-called Prüm regime obliges law enforcement authorities in all EU countries to render their forensic DNA databases searchable for other member states by 2011 (at a match/no match basis). This also means that countries which do not yet have centralized forensic DNA databases need to establish them by that date. In sum, the importance of forensic DNA databasing will continue to increase in the political and public arenas across Europe.

Doktoranden-Stipendium zu Ãœberwachung

The Open University Business School
The New Transparency, Queen’s University, Canada

The Open University Business School in conjunction with the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) funded ‘New Transparency: Surveillance and Social Sorting’ project would like to invite applications for a PhD scholarship, based at the Open University Business School, Milton Keynes, United Kingdom, in its ESRC recognized Research Degrees Programme.

Loic Wacquant: Bringing the Penal State Back In

Das British Journal of Sociology bietet auf seinen Webseiten öffentliche Vorträge als Podcast an. Dieser hier ist für einige Leser hier bestimmt von Interesse.

BJS 2009 Public Lecture Podcast
Bringing the Penal State Back In
Loic Wacquant and Nicola Lacey debate the need to bring the penal state back into the centre of the sociology of social inequaltiy, public policy and citizenship.

Die Tücken der Statistik

Hier ein Artikel aus dem Guardian, der die Wissenschaft hinter Dokumenten und Statistiken des britischen Home office diskutiert.

Beim Guardian: Home Office research so feeble someone ought to be locked up .. ..und in Ben Goldacre badscience-Blog direkt: Is this a joke? Und darum geht es:

Luckily, the Home Office has now published a consultation paper on the subject. They defend their database by arguing that innocent people who have been arrested are as likely to commit crimes in the future as guilty people. “This,” they say, “is obviously a controversial assertion.” That’s not true: it’s a simple matter of fact, and you could easily assemble some good quality evidence to see if it’s true or not.

The Home Office has assembled some evidence. It is not good quality. In fact, this study from the Jill Dando Institute, attached to their consultation paper as an appendix, is possibly the most unclear and poorly presented piece of research I have ever seen in a professional environment. Or am I having a bad day? Join me in my struggle to understand their work.

The president’s surveillance program

Published a couple of days ago, was a report by the Inspectors General of the US DOD, DOJ, CIA, NSA and office of the Director of National Intelligence, on the intelligence gathering activities and programmes given presidential approval after september 11th, collectively referred to as ‘the president’s surveillance program’

Here is the unclassified version.

Answer to surveillance report of british parliament

Here is the UK government’s response to the House of Lords Consitution Commitee inquiry on Surveillance: Citizens and the State.

In the Surveillance & Society issue No 3 2009, you can find a discussion of the report by Katherine Hayles, Oscar Gandy, Katja Aas and Mark Andrejevic. Charles Raab, who was specialist advisor to the Lords Commitee will be responding in the next issue.

See also this entry.

Neue Ausgabe von Surveillance & Society

New Issue Out Now!  Health, Medicine and Surveillance
– (edited by Sarah Earle, Pam Foley, Carol Komaromy, and Cathy E. Lloyd)

Featuring articles by:
– Martin A. French – Woven of War-Time Fabrics: The globalization of public health surveillance
РSusanne Bauer, Jan Eric Ols̩n РObserving the Others, Watching Over Oneself: Themes of medical surveillance in post-panoptic society
– Sarah Weibe – Producing Bodies and Borders: A review of immigrant medical examinations in Canada
– Cheryl Day – Does my bum look big in this? Reconsidering anorexia nervosa within the cultural context of 20th century Australia
– Mebbie Bell – ‘@ the doctor’s office’: Pro-anorexia and the medical gaze
– Emma Rich and Andy Miah – Prothetic Surveillance: The medical governance of healthy bodies in cyberspace

and lots of book reviews…

Video: Taking Liberties

Ein Video bei Google, offensichtlich in Zusammenhang mit einem Buch erschienen, welches die Situtation in Großbritannien hinsichtlich der Bürgerrechte und ihres Abbaus unter Labour zum Thema hat. Die Beschreibung zum Film:

TAKING LIBERTIES is a shocking but hilarious polemic documentary that charts the destruction of all your Basic Liberties under 10 Years of New Labour. Released to coincide with Tony Blair’s departure, the film and the book follow the stories of normal people who’s lives have been turned upside down by injustice – from being arrested for holding a placard outside parliament to being tortured in Guantanamo Bay.

Billboards that look back.

The International Herald Tribune has an article about the latest in consumer research technology: Billboards that look back.

You thought you were looking at an advertisement, but in fact it is looking at you and scanning you for age, sex by way of biometric analysis – and race will be introduced as a feature soon

The goal, these companies say, is to tailor a digital display to the person standing in front of it – to show one advertisement to a middle-aged white woman, for example, and a different one to a teenage Asian boy.
“Everything we do is completely anonymous,” said Paolo Prandoni, the founder and chief scientific officer of Quividi, a two-year-old company based in Paris that is gearing up billboards here and abroad. Quividi and its competitors specifically target digital billboards, which tend to play short videos as advertisements

That is now, but what possibilities does that open – the Minority Report does ring a bell here.