Surveillance State 2.0: Beta-Tested in China, Coming Soon to...?

Ryan J. Mitchell, Can Sun

Looking back one day, we may find that one of the great stories of the ‘Teens was the dawning recognition that a new kind of surveillance state was emerging, not just nationally, but globally. [1]

In remarks published on April 12, 2012, Ninth Circuit Chief Judge Alex Kozinski predicted that “[s]omeday soon they’ll decide it’s easier to watch all of us, all the time.”[2] Just a year and a half ago, this was still before “NSA disclosure” became a household phrase.[3] If you asked him today, would he change the tense of his statement?

A Myriad of Loose Ends

Jimmy Zhuang

This past June, the Supreme Court held in Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics Inc., 569 U.S. __ (2013) that DNA segments encompassing genes cannot be patented. The ACLU and other pro-access organizations rejoiced in victory [1]. Quietly, so did the biotechs [2]. The details of the Supreme Court decision leave many major concerns unaddressed for both sides, perhaps explaining this discrepancy in responses. By examining the two holdings and an important dictum of this case, and contextualizing their biotechnology implications, it is apparent that this case is far from a final say in the question of “patenting life.”

Hate the Game: Government Surveillance and the Market for Privacy

Amanda Lynch

Even before Edward Snowden called a press conference using a Lavabit email address, the FBI was interested in the secure email service.  Lavabit founder Ladar Levison tried to cater to the savvy consumer: providing private communication in a market where participants are increasingly aware of the government’s access to their data.  However, Levison shuttered his email service in August, after receiving a search warrant from the FBI compelling him to turn over Lavabit’s SSL encryption keys.  These keys would have exposed not only Snowden’s data, but also that of 400,000 other users.

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