Monday, 5 June 2017
UK Government Pushing to Destroy Internet Neutrality, Uses Murders to Excuse Tyranny
I have always tried to keep this place politically neutral. Really, as much as Twitter might see me citing Trump's personal embarrassments, the failings of our leaders and corruption of our institutions, that's there and this is here. Yet, this is something which needs to be brought up. A rare moment which not only disgusts me entirely, but likely will threaten my continued work in the years to come.
Not too long ago the UK was hit by two acts of terrorism in close succession to one another, the most recent of which was a cowardly mass stabbings of many innocents in the London Bridge attack. It was a horrific moment, which displayed the UK's weaknesses and limited ability to fully respond to these threats. Yet, the government does not seem to care about any actual measure of quashing this. There are a thousand different countermeasures which could have been used to further prevent these attacks, from tighter airport security to interrogations and tracking of those heading towards Libya and the Middle-East to limiting any and all flights to nations near to known hostile territories. Some are basic, others are extreme, but the answers and solutions are obvious. Unfortunately, our government does not care about saving lives. No, it cares about control.
In response to this act, our un-elected Prime Minister Theresa May declared that the internet would be regulated by the government now. Her specific words were as follows:
“We cannot allow this ideology the safe space it needs to breed – yet that is precisely what the internet, and the big companies that provide internet-based services provide,
We need to work with allied democratic governments to reach international agreements to regulate cyberspace to prevent the spread of extremist and terrorism planning.”
You can read a full report with attached video here, but the point is clear. Like so many others before her May has no concept of what she is asking, and she is looking for an excuse to give more power to herself rather than actually fix the problem. This is something the government has been hungering after for years, to stamp down on internet neutrality and make sure they have greater control over what people say, do or see. The recent Snooper's Charter rushed through parliament with barely a thought or comment over its use is just the most recent indication of this, and as many reports have pointed out this created more problems than solutions. Just see here for a full report on how that little rushed order is actually going to make lives infinitely easier for hackers, but infinitely harder for the average person. This is no different, and a mere glance at the past quickly proves just how minimal an impact this will actually have on terrorism of any kind.
For starters, consider what the IRA was capable of during its existence. This was a terrorist group which was organised, focused and well trained enough to launch attacks on No. 10 itself along with countless other bombings. No single person there used nor needed the internet to assist with these acts, just basic communications and planning to get around established governmental infrastructure.
The recent attack on Paris was made by using plane and basic instruments, and often unencrypted sources open to anyone to look at. These ranged from holiday booking website to simple license plates, rather than some shadowy corner of the world wide web. You can see a full breakdown of how this all took place here.
Then you have instances like school shootings, or people walking into work and merely unloading into their co-workers after having snapped. These can be anything as simple as one person picking up a knife and going into somewhere vulnerable to an attack, to a few others conversing in person. They do not Tweet about their attack before showing up or present it on Facebook, it simply happens without the need for it.
Still, if you want a much more recent, much more appropriate one, perhaps look into the Manchester bombing itself. This is one of the big ones people keep bringing up as a sign that we need the internet to be switched off so we can be safe, and we need to prevent people from having free will so we can bring down terrorists. Well, we could do that, or we could look at the clear signs that something was horribly wrong. Signs like prior warnings by the FBI months in advance to this, multiple warnings to authorities surrounding individuals years in advance, members of his family stating and giving reports that one member was dangerous, registered and recorded trips to and from Libya & Syria, visiting jihadist mosques or even - just to make this ridiculous - happily flying an ISIS flag from his house.
But no, apparently according to May this isn't enough, and we need to instead just block Facebook, Youtube and Google from the UK. Please keep in mind that this is the same woman who has actively undermined the NHS for years and is refusing to give nurses a pay rise, actively damaging and hindering the ability for a vital service to respond to these threats.
If you want to see more proof that blocking the internet simply doesn't work, you can find two very good articles here and here. Please, read them, as I wish to ask you all something.
Rarely have I ever asked anyone visiting this website to do something save for moments of true desperation, but I ask each and everyone of you now to listen. A few thousand of you stop at this blog, read these articles and enjoy this work every passing day. If anything I have ever said has meant anything to you, then please message your local MP, the British government or even just Tweet at the accounts of government members telling them not to do this. Feel free to cite the points above, feel free to use the same message over and over again, but please, once a day, start sending them in to the UK government, and force them for one in their miserable lives to actually serve the people.
Incidents like this are ultimately why I personally have no faith in the UK government as a whole, no matter which party is in charge at any time. To borrow a term by Aaron Dembski-Bowden, I would not trust any member of this government to burn even if I was the one who set them on fire. They're corrupt, incompetent, lazy and are determined to hold onto power even if they lack any ability to lead. Quite frankly, i'm tired of it. I do not want to wake up one day to find I cannot do my job because such petty, slovenly failures of human beings decided the internet cannot be fully accessed by the public if it's deemed "unsafe" by them.
So please, whoever you are and wherever you stand politically or globally, just message them. Write a few lines, add a few links, or even just copy and paste this damn article if you have to. I only ask that you force them to serve the people for once, rather than whoever is governing their party.