Ma Bell Was 80 Years Ahead of Me

by on August 9, 2007 · 0 comments

One of this week’s podcast guests, Derek Slater, has a fantastic post over at the EFF blog on AT&T’s flip-flopping position on domestic surveillance. In 1928, in an amicus brief in the famous Olmstead wiretapping case, Ma Bell made the same comparison I made earlier this week:

The telephone has become part and parcel of the social and business intercourse of the people of the United States, and this telephone system offers a means of espionage to which general warrants and writs of assistance were the puniest instruments of tyranny and oppression.

And of course, the voice recognition and data mining technologies the feds have today makes the wiretapping at issue in Olmstead look puny.

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