Friday, March 13, 2015

Here's The Digital Privacy Battle At The Center Of Obama's Big Trade Deal

Open Internet advocates are still fighting for key privacy protections in a major trade pact the Obama administration is negotiating with 11 Pacific nations. But as talks over the deal enter their final stages in Hawaii this week, it looks like an uphill battle -- Internet freedom activists appear to be opposing important traditional allies: major tech companies and even Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.).

Wyden's views on privacy issues are especially significant due to his position as the top Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee -- the panel with jurisdiction over Obama's Trans-Pacific Partnership, or TPP. And some of his backers worry that he’s not on their side.

"Wyden is hypocritical," said Jeffrey Chester, executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy, an open Internet advocacy group. "On the one hand he wants to limit government spying on citizens, but he looks the other way when it comes to high-tech companies spying on Americans and global citizens."


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