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Apple Discusses iOS Privacy Issues Before Congress 132

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the it-was-an-accident-we-swear dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Earlier today, Apple's VP of software technology, Guy L. 'Bud' Tribble appeared before a congressional hearing on mobile privacy to address concerns that were first brought to the forefront following the 'location tracking' controversy that emerged a few weeks ago."
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Apple Discusses iOS Privacy Issues Before Congress

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  • Advice (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Remember Guy, the fifth amendment is your friend.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    ...with Tribbles

    • Yea, no wonder iPhones seem to be multiplying like jack rabbits.
      • by Cwix (1671282)

        Really/ I haven't seen one in months. I saw an iPad the other day though.

        • by dwillden (521345)
          Crap! too true. That means not only are they multiplying like jack rabbits but they are mutating in size and shape. Within a few years they will achieve the perfect 1:4:9 proportions and the apple iMonoliths will take over the galaxy.
          • by peragrin (659227)

            Actually the iMonoliths will turn Jupiter into a second sun so the His royal Highness Steve Jobs can finally take off his black turtleneck while living in CA.

          • by macs4all (973270)

            Crap! too true. That means not only are they multiplying like jack rabbits but they are mutating in size and shape. Within a few years they will achieve the perfect 1:4:9 proportions and the apple iMonoliths will take over the galaxy.

            Boy, do I wish I had some graphics skills! I can't believe no one has done an iPhone == Monolith parody; but I couldn't find one. If my search-fu is just weak, someone please post a link!

    • My first thought was "Dude, is that really your name [wikipedia.org]?"

  • Earlier today, Apple's VP of software technology, Guy L. 'Bud' Tribble appeared before a congressional hearing on mobile privacy to address concerns that were first brought to the forefront following the 'location tracking' controversy that emerged a few weeks ago.

    How did you do it?
    Can you do it again without it being discovered?
    We would like to introduce you to your contact at the FBI.

    • Re:How it went... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by DJRumpy (1345787) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @06:30PM (#36088208)

      If you had read the article, you would know that the info Apple stores relates to cell tower locations, and wifi hotspots. No identifying information is sent to Apple at all, and they would have no way of identifying you even if approached by the FBI. They would have to get their hands on your phone, which within a few days, already had a fix to remove the cache after a few days, and you can permanently delete it just by turning off the location services.

      If it got to the point where warrants were issued, they could easily collect device specific info from the Cell providers. Apple's data didn't even have device specific identifiers.

      Google on the other hand started talking about 'Openess' and finding 'balance', when their response was anything but. They basically stated that they weren't responsible for how the app's handled location data and that it was up to the app developers to be responsible. Of the two, I think Apples response was appropriate, both in patching the bug in the OS, and in anonymizing the data they do collect to begin with.

      From TFA:

      Subsequently, a notable exchange between Google rep Alan Davidson. Trying to dance around how Google handles location settings in Android, Davidson explained:
      We’re trying to increase openness, but it’s not no-holds-barred. We do have a content policy in our market. We don’t go after trucking companies for carrying faulty goods, you go after the manufacturer. There’s a balance.
      Not buying it, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse fired back:
      You do go after the trucking company if they know what they’re carrying. Google’s in a better position to know what’s going on than a seventeen year old that wants to try a cool app. I don’t think that’s a comfortable analogy for you to rely on.

      This kind of response from Microsoft or Apple would never be tolerated on slashdot. This thread just seems to be glossing over Google's response. The proper response from both companies is to work to provide better protections. Apple has already taken those steps within a few days of the bug being reported. Google just sidestepped the question with no commitment to finding a better approach.

      Disappointing.

      • Does this surprise you? And does it surprise you that the focus still seems to be on Apple for what was a pretty hyper inflated sky is falling hysteria, and yet Google is let off scott free by the press and the folks buying into the "open" propaganda?

      • We’re trying to increase openness, but it’s not no-holds-barred. We do have a content policy in our market. We don’t go after trucking companies for carrying faulty goods, you go after the manufacturer. There’s a balance.
        Not buying it, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse fired back:
        You do go after the trucking company if they know what they’re carrying. Google’s in a better position to know what’s going on than a seventeen year old that wants to try a cool app. I don’t think that’s a comfortable analogy for you to rely on.

        But Google does not know what they're carrying, because they're not in the business of reviewing apps that can or cannot be installed on the computer before they allow it in the marketplace, like Apple got in the business of. If somebody informs them that an app is violating their terms, they remove it from the store and kill-switch it, but they have no way of knowing ahead of time, and somebody could still install it from unofficial sources.

        This kind of response from Microsoft or Apple would never be tolerated on slashdot.

        Actually, it's completely consistent with the overall geek stance

  • Questioning (Score:3, Insightful)

    by tripleevenfall (1990004) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @03:23PM (#36086500)

    I think Facebook and Google need to be drug out before these commissions as well.

    We need serious laws with serious teeth on privacy in every space - home internet, mobile data, and everywhere else. CLEAR opt ins and opt outs, not garbage buried in a TOS document no one reads.

    The BIGGEST problem is that most people and corporations think it's OK to collect personal information and location data as long as "this can't be tied back to an individual person". That is NOT OK.

    • by jrj102 (87650) *

      I think Facebook and Google need to be drug out before these commissions as well.

      Google did testify. However, where Apple sent a VP, Google sent a lobbyist. I believe you will be able to watch the archived hearings on CSpan once they've been posted.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Runaway1956 (1322357)

      At the risk of being redundant - I'll repost the same thing I posted above:

      TFS really isn't worth a lot, and TFA seems to be an ego-centric Apple article. But, people who keep up with the news already knew that there were going to be more people than Apple's shills testifying at that hearing. First Google hit on my set of search terms: http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/10/congress-hears-from-apple-and-google-on-privacy/?partner=rss&emc=rss [nytimes.com] [nytimes.com]

      You can use your own search terms - or,

    • Naw. Just Apple. According to Steve Android is fragmented and it will just wither up and die. So no point in having Google show up. They're just as good as dead already. And Steve thinks the best Facebook user-experience is through Safari or the iPhone app. So, once again, no need to grill Facebook. Just grill Apple.
    • Re:Questioning (Score:5, Informative)

      by samkass (174571) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @04:06PM (#36086970) Homepage Journal

      Google also testified today.

      Apple sent an Engineering PhD VP to describe the measures they've taken to make sure the potential privacy violations don't happen again.

      Google sent a Congressional lobbyist to tell people how wonderful it is that Google can use your personal information to make better products.

      • by mjwx (966435)

        Google also testified today.

        Apple sent an Engineering PhD VP to describe the measures they've taken to make sure the potential privacy violations don't happen again.

        Google sent a Congressional lobbyist to tell people how wonderful it is that Google can use your personal information to make better products.

        Google's services are opt-in. They sent a lawyer who could explain that to lawyers.

        Apple recorded this information behind peoples backs. They sent in a weasel to try and get out of it.

        Things sound so different from the truth when you put spin around it. The only people surprised about what Google are doing are the people who've never used Android therefore have never seen the opt in screen when you start the phone up and log in to Gmail (or not, if you so desire). Besides this, Google is using no UID'

        • Could you be any more full of shit? Apple doesn't record the information on their servers dipwad. Apple records information about cell towers and wifi spots to help with aGPS performance.

          You've got to extract Google's penis out of your ass for a minute and you may be able to think a little clearer.

    • by Salvo (8037)

      Gowalla, Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, Foursquare, Latitude are all opt-in location tracking services. They may need to be dragged out over how easy it is to opt-in, but in the end, it's user choice. Users can refuse these Apps and Services access to the location APIs in iOS.

      Android, however would need to reassess their Quasi-Open, Wild-West-style Android Marketplace to combat User Privacy issues. Apps aren't sandboxed away from the Location APIs like in iOS, so Google have no control over whether a users loca

      • by dgatwood (11270)

        They may need to be dragged out over how easy it is to opt-in

        And how hard it is to opt back out. Unless they've fixed it recently, if you tap on the "Check-in" button in the iPhone app just out of curiosity to see what it is and how it works, from then on, Facebook asks for permission to use your location every time you run the d**n app, whether you use the check-in feature or not. Can you say obnoxious? The only way I've found to fix it is to delete the Facebook app entirely and reinstall it.

        The bigger

        • They may need to be dragged out over how easy it is to opt-in

          And how hard it is to opt back out. Unless they've fixed it recently, if you tap on the "Check-in" button in the iPhone app just out of curiosity to see what it is and how it works, from then on, Facebook asks for permission to use your location every time you run the d**n app, whether you use the check-in feature or not. Can you say obnoxious? The only way I've found to fix it is to delete the Facebook app entirely and reinstall it.

          I know it can be hard to find, here's a tip: Settings -> Location Services

          • by dgatwood (11270)

            At least in iOS 3 (which is the last version my phone supports), it's Settings > General > Location Services, and the only choices are "on" or "off". So your choice is between an obnoxious nag every time you launch Facebook or having to manually reenable location services every time you want to use Google Maps.

            Either way, it does nothing to solve the problem that I was pointing out, which was that if apps ask for location services even when they don't really need location services (as is the case whe

      • by Kalriath (849904)

        Android, however would need to reassess their Quasi-Open, Wild-West-style Android Marketplace to combat User Privacy issues. Apps aren't sandboxed away from the Location APIs like in iOS, so Google have no control over whether a users location is being tracked or not. Malware could be installed on an Android that tracks location and the User wouldn't know. Google haven't even come out and stated that they aren't tracking devices.

        Attempting to access the Location API without having declared that you want that permission (and therefore the user being asked during installation) results in SecurityManager denying your request. Have you even looked at an Android device?

        • by Altus (1034)

          Is that true for apps that are side loaded onto an android device, or only ones that come from an app store (or only ones that come from googles app store)? Honest question, I don't have a Android device of my own to try it on.

          • by Kalriath (849904)

            All apps, even side loaded ones, invoke the permissions prompt when installing and enforce the assigned permissions. This would not, of course, be applicable to rooted phones unless the custom ROM also enforces this.

  • by crow_t_robot (528562) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @03:23PM (#36086506)
    Considering that the hearings about the economic collapse didn't result in any jail time or even any fines for the perpetrators, Tribble should just show up in flip-flops and a t-shirt while drunk and say "What's up, sluts? I hope this isn't going to take very long....yea, we violate privacy but considering you didn't do anything about Wall Street execs that literally raped this country out of trillions of dollars I'm sure as shit you are going to get off your fat asses for some lousy cellphone privacy issues! Peace out, bitches, catch you on the flippity flop!"
    • by geminidomino (614729) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @03:25PM (#36086524) Journal

      Wall Street execs that literally raped this country out of trillions of dollars

      That word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

      • That word also does not apply when the politicians who voted for those bills did it cheerfully and willingly.

      • Nah bro it's literary. The character "Tribble" is who you don't think knows what that word means.

      • Yes it does.

        The Corps slid into our fiduciary trust and smoothly moved money in and out of our bank accounts, and becoming quite excited in the process. Then they embraced us and extended us more products. They nearly extinguished the economy.

      • by ae1294 (1547521)

        Wall Street execs that literally raped this country out of trillions of dollars

        That word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

        I'm not 100% sure but I think it fits in this case...

      • Maybe he understands that word, but not the next one.
      • Actually, two of the definitions of 'rape' are correct for that statement. One is to plunder or despoil. The other is to seize or carry off by force. They are indeed archaic definitions and not in common use, but if we're going to be pedantic, let's do it right.

        Of course, there's a feedback loop on these sorts of definitions, amirite? One can also say, "John took Joan right then..." and in this case, "taking" clearly has a sexual--and likely forceful, although not necessarily non-consensual--meaning.
        • Wall Street execs that literally raped this country out of trillions of dollars

          Actually, two of the definitions of 'rape' are correct for that statement. One is to plunder or despoil. The other is to seize or carry off by force. They are indeed archaic definitions and not in common use, but if we're going to be pedantic, let's do it right.

          Not quite. The money might have been "plundered" or "carried off by force," not the country. You'd need to swap the direct and indirect objects for those two definitions to fit properly.

          Nope. The guy's clearly just a tool who literally doesn't know what the word literally means (kind of like the dickhole who put it into the dictionary post mentioned in sibling subthread)

      • I don't know, he just might. It would explain certain feelings I've been having. Shame, and a burning sensation.
      • by revscat (35618) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @05:12PM (#36087630) Journal

        Actually, it does. From New Oxford American Dictionary:

        informal used for emphasis or to express strong feeling while not being literally true : I have received literally thousands of letters.

        • by LordLucless (582312) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @08:12PM (#36089104)

          So "literal" now means "not literal". Now I'm just hanging out for "true" being an informal use of "false" so we can discard useful communication altogether. Reminds me why I speak English and not American.

          • by N Monkey (313423)

            So "literal" now means "not literal". Now I'm just hanging out for "true" being an informal use of "false" so we can discard useful communication altogether. Reminds me why I speak English and not American.

            Well, I suppose it's a bit like those who say "I could care less" when they actually mean "I couldn't care less". Let's blame the education system ;-)

    • I love what Congress latches onto. Although this iPhone location file deal is a big deal, it seems to me that there are more important issues that should be discussed. Like maybe throwing the banksters who caused the financial crisis in jail. But at least it's more important than the hearings about steroids in baseball.
      • by macs4all (973270)

        I love what Congress latches onto. Although this iPhone location file deal is a big deal, it seems to me that there are more important issues that should be discussed. Like maybe throwing the banksters who caused the financial crisis in jail. But at least it's more important than the hearings about steroids in baseball.

        Boy, that ain't no shit!

    • by Salvo (8037)

      I'm not saying that any Senators could possibly be corrupt, but the banking industry can fund an awful lot of "Lobbyists".

      Apple could too, but by sending a Senior Engineer to rationally and logically explain how Apple are doing everything they can to protect user privacy, they are putting forward the idea that Commercial Interests and Customer Privacy can coexist.

      It's said the the iPhone is Apple's Product and the User is Apple's Customer, while Users are Google Product and Advertisers are Google's Customer

      • The issue here is that Congress is in trouble if the banking industry collapses, therefore it is against their best interests to call for stiff penalties. However, if Apple collapses, they can just switch to Android phones, or Windows phones. No biggie. Apple realized this I'm sure, and so has shown that they're taking the issue seriously.

        However, Google appears to be attempting to spin it: "We're like the banks... if you pursue this, the smartphone industry will collapse. If you don't, you'll get all t

        • by Altus (1034)

          What makes you think that Apple needs location data in order to make their business model work? There is no evidence at all that their business model is based on selling user information, in fact, its based primarily on selling hardware (which is combined with integrated software to provide what should be a desirable end user experience). Google, on the other hand, makes their money from advertising and therefor demographic and location information is actually quite central to the way they make money.

    • Some of us don't want to read "Funny" comments and set up our profile to mod them down. If you erroneously mod a "funny" comment as something else, even with the good intention of protecting someones karma, you are damaging the experience of other slashdot users. Thank you.

    • by ph4cr (775696)
      FUNNY!
    • by macs4all (973270)

      Considering that the hearings about the economic collapse didn't result in any jail time or even any fines for the perpetrators, Tribble should just show up in flip-flops and a t-shirt while drunk and say "What's up, sluts? I hope this isn't going to take very long....yea, we violate privacy but considering you didn't do anything about Wall Street execs that literally raped this country out of trillions of dollars I'm sure as shit you are going to get off your fat asses for some lousy cellphone privacy issues! Peace out, bitches, catch you on the flippity flop!"

      +4 Insightful?!? Really? IN-SIGHT-FUL????

      Abandon ye all hope who post here!

  • by Anonymous Coward

    While Apple certainly deserves a lot of blame, so do all the people who purchased their products. It has been clear for ages that their model is one of lockdown and control. If you support that kind of thing financially, you bear some of the responsibility for the direction that our society seems to be going: erosion of personal ownership and transfer of control to multinational corporations.

    Your actions should reflect how you want the world to be. If you act opposite of that, in the end, you will get ex

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      I don't think it's a crime for someone to buy Apple products. Let the free markets be free. However, you understand going in that you're going to be locked in, in some ways - and if you don't, you still bear the weight of that choice because you didn't do your homework.

      That being said, it's simply a question of whether it's reasonable to expect that Apple users will move to any other service. No, they will likely not. As we see in practically every marketplace in IT, vendor-lock in is a powerful force.

    • by thetartanavenger (1052920) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @04:18PM (#36087098)

      While Apple certainly deserves a lot of blame, so do all the people who purchased their products. It has been clear for ages that their model is one of lockdown and control. If you support that kind of thing financially, you bear some of the responsibility for the direction that our society seems to be going: erosion of personal ownership and transfer of control to multinational corporations.

      Those purchasing deserve blame for what exactly. Yes they lock down their devices, so what. Some people want that, others don't which is why we have competition and alternatives like Android. When Apple crossed a line with personal privacy people stood up and complained and it was resolved. Yes there should be more protections in place to prevent this kind of incident, but those purchasing clearly didn't like what happened and Apple was put in its place. If they didn't, /then/ go ahead and transfer the blame, but until then all the consumers have done is purchase a device in a safe ecosystem that they can't break. If you don't like the restrictions then don't buy it..

      • Damn you for spouting truth!! AC was on a good ideological rant and you ruined it with common sense!!

    • by Angostura (703910)

      I'm all ears, in what way is the fact that Apple locally caches cellphone tower and WiFi location data on a device in anyway connected to its policy of operating a tightly curated app-store and locking down the device?

    • by node 3 (115640)

      Yeah, those people who are voluntarily choosing to buy products that best serve their needs. What assholes!

      Here's a clue: Apple doesn't invade your privacy, and they don't "lockdown and control" except in order to make their products more appealing and more powerful to more people. By voluntarily choosing Apple's products, consumers *are* taking an active stance in creating the world they want to see. It's just not the world *you* want to see. Who are you to dictate to them the world they should wish for?

      Ap

  • by mrnick (108356) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @03:28PM (#36086546) Homepage

    Dammit! ... They are using the Chewbacca defense!
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chewbacca_defense [wikipedia.org]

  • by Anonymous Coward

    ... is tell congress that they're baking features into the OS for what the DHS will want from them ...

  • Trouble with Tribble (Score:2, Informative)

    by Sponge Bath (413667)

    "Tribble said that Apple doesn’t track user location and has no plans to ever do so in the future."

    "Tribble acknowledged that the location data in question was not encrypted but that it will be in the next major iOS update."

    So the Apple device tracks and stores your location, but Apple the company does not. That's comforting.

    • by rritterson (588983) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @03:42PM (#36086700)

      Apple PR failed to remove a lot of the misconceptions about the little location file on the device, so let me take a crack. The location information on the iPhone is not YOUR location, but rather a collection of location data points that includes the cell towers in the local vicinity, some of which could be up to 100 miles away. As a result, the phone is not storing your location, but instead just downloading a bit of cache data so it can look up your location faster when you want it to. That responds to the 'storing' part of your post. With respect to tracking, if you know a way for a navigation app to give you directions and locate you, but not track you, I'd like to hear it. In the meantime, if you would like the phone to NOT know where you are, period, just switch off 'location services', which, as of 4.2.3, also deletes the local cache database.

      Meanwhile, all sorts of information about your location is leaked by all the devices you use. One trivial example is your IP address, which, while not a precise locator, gives the other end some idea about where you are (assuming no proxies, etc etc)

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by h4rr4r (612664)

        . The location information on the iPhone is not YOUR location, but rather a collection of location data points that includes the cell towers in the local vicinity,

        English Translation: It stores your location, just not very accurately.

        • by gnasher719 (869701) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @04:56PM (#36087498)

          English Translation: It stores your location, just not very accurately.

          Mistranslation. It stores several locations all around the point where the phone was. Now if we ignore the fact that nobody can lay their hands on this data without stealing my phone or computer, in which case (1) my phone or computer is gone, and (2) there are things like email, address book, browser cache that I worry about a lot lot more, and if we ignore the fact that there is very little someone could do with _exact_ information where I have been, information that shows my location within half a mile is completely useless to anyone.

        • by SJ (13711)

          ...for varying values of "accurately"...

          I know the exact location of every person in North America.

          North America.

      • by Caetel (1057316)
        A collection of location data points that includes cell towers and WiFi access points, which generally have a range of less than 100 feet. In areas with higher population densities, there are usually multiple cell towers per square mile, which makes it incredibly misleading to drop the 100 mile figure.
    • "Tribble said that Apple doesnâ(TM)t track user location and has no plans to ever do so in the future."

      ".... unless law enforcement agencies come a-calling, in which case you're screwed."

      • by Salvo (8037)

        The only way you have been track an iPhone is if the device is configured to use MS Exchange or MobileMe.

        The Device records location data (not your precise location), and uploads location data (without any unique identifiers), but doesn't track your location (unless you tell it too with Apps like Gowalla and Google Latitude).

        If Law Enforcement went to Apple and said "I want to know UncleTogie's movements for the last week", and you don't have MobileMe, Apple would have nothing to give them.
        They may however

        • by Altus (1034)

          Of course, law enforcement would actually go to your wireless provider and ask them for the information and they actually have access to that information and will be more than happy to provide it.

          • Hell, your wireless provider has almost certainly set up a special backdoor for them to get this information about anyone they want without even having to write a letter or speak to a human being. It's a pain in the ass to read and respond to all those letters. It's a pain in the ass to have to write them. Everyone is happier when the cops just log into the LE portal and take whatever data they want.

            Everyone loves cops, and everybody wants to help them fight crime and stuff! You love the cops, don't you

      • Hint: If law enforcement agencies want to know where your phone has been, they don't have to search for a list of approximate locations in your iPhone or its backup. All they do is ask your cell provider. That's why you should never carry your cell phone anywhere you don't want the police to know you've been, and that applies if you've got an iPhone, an Android, or the cheapo model that came free with the lowest-price contract.

        Really, guys, this is no big deal. Some of you do think there's nothing li

    • by Altus (1034)

      You know that firefox keeps copies of web sites you visit on your computer. They say its just so that they can load pages faster, but I know that all of that data is being secretly sent to the firefox cabal who are secretly selling that information to the highest bidder. I know because I read about it all on slashdot.

      Caches like this are common and for good reason. Sure, it would be better if the file was always encrypted and it would be better if it was trimmed down to only a couple of days worth of dat

      • "You know that firefox keeps copies of web sites you visit on your computer."

        Unless you are browsing in privacy mode. Apart from that, it is a matter of trust. On one hand you have a mature, widely used open source project maintained by many developers and access to the source code. On the other you have the secretive profit driven control freakery of Apple and the closed iDevices that inhabit its walled garden.

        --
        Sent from my iTracker

        • by iluvcapra (782887)

          You know, you never actually see what happens to your Latitude check-ins after you make them, where they go, how they're warehoused, how they're indexed and searched, what particular parties at Google have access to what data. It's not like Google opens the server code for its location services, the app store, docs, search, gmail... Google's operation is very much a "secretive profit driven control freakery" when it comes to their back-end. So pick your poison.

    • Any cell phone that displays your location needs to track and store it in some form.

      Smart phones aside, one of the main purposes of a cell phone is to constantly transmit it's location to the cell phone network, which stores it.

    • by Angostura (703910) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @06:58PM (#36088522)

      You know what, the hard disk in this PC I'm using records *every piece* of personal data that I produce on it, documents, spreadsheets - the lot. It even records some passwords. That's bad right? As far as I know, the data isn't being sent to HP, but do you think I should format the drive every day?

      • ...do you think I should format the drive every day?

        It's worth a shot, let me know how it works out.

    • by ikeman32 (1333971)
      Well we could always beam Tribble onto a Klingon vessel. Klingons and Tribbles don't get along. *Cue the lame joke sound byte.*
  • Earlier today, Apple's VP of software technology, Guy L. 'Bud' Tribble...

    Beam him into the Klingons' engine room, Scotty...

  • by Cogneato (600584) on Tuesday May 10, 2011 @04:31PM (#36087210) Homepage

    Is there any chance at all that Slashdot might make a tiny amount of effort to report about Apple and Google in the same tone when they are sitting side by side talking about essentially the exact same stuff?

    When you present a story like this in such an slanted way, it begins to reek of the technics used by right-wing radio hosts about stuff they consider liberal. There are plenty of legitimate things to criticize Apple for, that you don't have to reconstruct reality to create new ones.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      This IS the limited "other side". Slashdot generally bows before the White Plastic Altar (formerly the Brushed Steel Altar, formerly the Bright Fruit-Colored Plastic Altar) of the Almighty Steve in most of their stories. Blow-by-blow reports of ADC? Rumor after rumor after rumor after rumor made front-page news? An excited article on Apple releasing a WHOLE SECOND GODDAMNED COLOR OF IPHONE?? Remind me again where the slanted reporting is.

      All Apple needs to do is release a brushed steel iPhone, call it

    • by rsborg (111459)

      Is there any chance at all that Slashdot might make a tiny amount of effort to report about Apple and Google in the same tone when they are sitting side by side talking about essentially the exact same stuff?

      Apple sent a VP of software tech and Google sent a lobbyist. If I'm going to listen to a lobbyist, they better be paying me money.

      • by tyrione (134248)

        Is there any chance at all that Slashdot might make a tiny amount of effort to report about Apple and Google in the same tone when they are sitting side by side talking about essentially the exact same stuff?

        Apple sent a VP of software tech and Google sent a lobbyist. If I'm going to listen to a lobbyist, they better be paying me money.

        Apple sent Bud, one of the founding engineers from Apple and later NeXT, now back at Apple to talk about technology and how it actually works. Google sent a Lawyer.

      • by mjwx (966435)

        Apple sent a VP of software tech and Google sent a lobbyist.

        So you've proven the GGP right, you cant discuss this objectively.

        Also remember that Google's actions were opt-in, twice, once when you first sign on to Gmail, the second every time you turn on location services, so their issue is legal (send a lawyer).

        Apple kept a database of user movements without informing the user of anything let alone giving them the option to not do it. So their issue is also legal (and they sent an engineer to try an

    • by Anonymous Coward

      It was because Apple and Google did not act identically. Apple's offense was considerably worse.

  • Congress: do as we say, not as we do (via FISA, HS, TSA, etc)

  • An open request to United States legislators:

    You are holding hearings on matters of information science. These matters may be reflected in information policy going forward. Could you please take the time to publish some information policy theory papers which outline your findings and present your hypotheses about how government, corporations, and the public should interact to best serve the sovereign(*) of the nation?

    Information science is a very new field. The public should be encouraged and empowered to c

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