Monthly Archives: August 2012

Isaac Headed Straight for Us?

Bonus frisson #1: Tomorrow is the 20th anniversary of Hurricane Andrew (although so far I’ve seen nothing suggesting that Isaac should be anywhere as bad). It’s just a couple days over 20 years since I first arrived in Miami. We had a pretty rude welcome from Nature.

Bonus frisson #2: If Isaac keeps going it might hit Tampa around time that the GOP coronation of Mitt Romney is scheduled. Should that happen, though, I doubt I’ll be seeing Pat Robertson explaining this as a sign of divine disapproval of the GOP. Or will someone actually link it to the selection of a protestant-free ticket?

I’m due to be home late Friday, so if all goes on schedule this shouldn’t impact my trip, and I get to hunker with the family.

Posted in Miami | 1 Comment

Yes, Assange Would Be Safer in Sweden

One thing that always comes up when I discuss WikiLeaks with other lawyers, whatever country they may be from, is shared incredulity at Assange’s claim that he faces a great risk of hypothetical extradition to the US from Sweden, or that his risk would be greater there than in the UK…especially given that when it comes to extradition to the US, the UK has to be in the running for Top Poodle. But what do I know about Swedish law?

Thus, it it is reassuring and unsurprising to find a quality analysis of the Swedish legal rules relating to any hypothetical extradition request. And, no, according to Klamberg on Extraditing Assange from Sweden to the U.S. Assange wouldn’t seem to have much to worry about.

Which leads suspicious minds to wonder if perhaps there isn’t some other reason why Assange doesn’t want to be extradited to Sweden?

Posted in Internet, Law: International Law | 4 Comments

Slides From my P3P Talk

I thought I would post the slides from my P3P talk. I’m not sure if I will write this up into a paper. On the one hand, there’s really nothing surprising in what I’m saying here. On the other hand, there doesn’t seem to be a paper out there that directly addresses the topic, so there would at least be some point in writing it up.

A. Michael Froomkin, Platform for Privacy Preferences (P3P): Lessons Learnt for Privacy Standards (Oslo, Aug. 21, 2012).

I’ve also attempted to embed the files, but that doesn’t seem to be working out….

[gview file=””]

Posted in Internet, Talks & Conferences | Leave a comment

Speaking at Two Events in Oslo, Norway

I’ll be speaking at two events in Oslo this week.

The first, on Tuesday 21 August, is a workshop on ‘Technical standards and privacy by design — A half-day Internet Science workshop at the University of Oslo. I’m speaking about what we can learn from the not entirely happy history of P3P.

In the second event is an igov2 Symposium on Governance of the Domain Name System and the Future Internet Project. On Wednesday I will be commenting on a paper by Kevin McGillivray about the changing role of the IANA contract. The IANA contract is one of the agreements between ICANN and the US government regarding the administration of the Domain Name System (DNS), and in light of recent changes in their relationship, it is now both the most important and the most obscure of those agreements. igov2, by the way, is short for “Governance of the Domain Name System and the Future Internet: New Parameters, New Challenges”; the conference runs through Thursday.

Posted in Talks & Conferences | Leave a comment

Proving the Truth of the Old Saying

“A lie will go round the world while truth is pulling its boots on” pretty much sums up Day4 – How we screwed almost the whole Apple community. Either that or a lot of people have a screw loose somewhere.

— spotted via the slacktivist

Posted in Etc | Leave a comment

The (866) 540-3140 Mystery

Every day — every day! — for the last eight or so days I’ve been at home I’ve gotten a robo-call from an outfit that identifies itself as “Independent Voter Research.”

Every day — every day! — the robot asks me the same demographic questions (age, party, likely voter, race) and then asks me who I plan to vote for. Once I think it maybe also asked what I think of the President’s job performance. At the end of the short quiz, it gives a number at which ‘Independent Voter Research’ can be contacted: (866) 540-3140.

Something odd here. What kind of poll calls the same person every day? Is it looking for a different demographic, hoping the other registered voter will answer the phone? Is it some weird new type of tracking poll where they are looking to see if a given fixed population changes its views over time? Some unfathomable scam, looking for old folks to rip off? Some polling outfit ripping off some campaign? Some campaign with more money than sense?

After last night’s call, I’d had it. I called the number, and got a recording saying that they were sorry they had missed me, but were just calling to get my opinion; obviously a message for those with caller ID. Same thing again today.

So it seems that “Independent Voter Research” is not a group that really wants me to know about it. On to the internet, where they have no apparent web page. But looking up the number leads me to frantic discussions between Ron Paul supporters about a plot to get info about delegates in Virginia and elsewhere. More interestingly, it also leads me to a Rolling Stone article from Februay, Romney Camp Tapped Volunteers For Deceptive Polling Effort in Michigan in which I learn that the “Independent Voter Research” monicker and the same phone number were in fact used by the Romney campaign in a shady project in Michigan. But that project involved live callers; this one is a recording.

So, assuming this is a Romney project, what on earth do they stand to gain from robo-calling me daily?

Posted in 2012 Election | 21 Comments

The Case for Class Warfare

Rich Kids Of Instagram is the sort of thing that just might upset the proles.

Even a Forbes staffer is reacting strongly: “the hashtag #RKOI (rich kids of instagram, for the uninitiated) is making me feel murderous.” But her solution is just to hide the evidence: get rich kids to stop using social media!

Posted in Econ & Money | 6 Comments