Friday, October 19, 2007

Dangerous Link: Proceed at Your Own Risk

The link at the bottom of this post will not take you to a Web site specifically of interest to atheists. In fact, atheism isn't even an issue. Be warned, too, that clicking on the link, which will bring up a story from the Phoenix New Times, may subject you to various degrees of data-mining. You could well be included in the government's attempt to find out:

A) which pages visitors access or visit on the Phoenix New Times website;

B) the total number of visitors to the Phoenix New Times website;

C) information obtained from 'cookies,' including, but not limited to, authentication, tracking, and maintaining specific information about users (site preferences, contents of electronic shopping carts, etc.);

D) the Internet Protocol address of anyone that accesses the Phoenix New Times website from January 1, 2004 to the present;

E) the domain name of anyone that has accessed the Phoenix New Times website from January 1, 2004 to the present;

F) the website a user visited prior to coming to the Phoenix New Times website;

G) the date and time of a visit by a user to the Phoenix New Times website;

H) the type of browser used by each visitor (Internet Explorer, Mozilla, Netscape Navigator, Firefox, etc.) to the Phoenix New Times website; and

I) the type of operating system used by each visitor to the Phoenix New Times website.
Now, I must admit that I don't read the New Times and I don't live anywhere near Phoenix. But a friend of mine sent me this article, which alleges such a gross, unconstitutional usurpation of the justice system that I thought I should pass it on. Because we atheists must be vigilant to outrages like this, even when they fall outside our immediate realm of anti-theocratic concern, I just had to get involved.

After the article was published yesterday, its writers, both executives of Village Voice Media (the parent company of New Times), were arrested.

I'm not going to tell you anything further about the situation. The long report does a fine job of laying out the facts without needing my help. Perhaps, though, it won't even be available by the time you get around to looking at it. If it is, just be aware that you're endangering your privacy if you do choose to click.

I hope you will. I also hope you'll publish the link on your own blog. Here it is:

Breathtaking Abuse of the Constitution

[Update - Saturday, Oct. 20, 11:58 a.m. edt: All charges against the Phoenix New Times have been dropped. The threat against your e-privacy, what little you have of it in Bush's America, has been removed for the time being.]


Anonymous said...

Thanks for publicizing this. Arpaio is an out-of-control megalomaniac buffoon and petty tinpot dictator who exemplifies on a local scale everything that is wrong with George Bush Junior's christofascist America. He has a record of sleaze, corruption, incompetence, cronyism, dirty tricks, lawbreaking and brutality going back 15 years. My only hope is that this time he has finally gone too far. I have some more links about Arpaio here.