Bush Wants To Know: Are You Googling "Rent Boy"?

The Bush Administration's subpoena of Google to turn over millions of user search queries has already had a dangerous effect: Users are scared to do searches, because the feds might misconstrue them. So reports the New York Times....

January 26, 2006

1 Min Read
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The Bush Administration's subpoena of Google to turn over millions of user search queries has already had a dangerous effect: Users are scared to do searches, because the feds might misconstrue them. So reports the New York Times. A Times article says that the subpoena has "caused some people to think twice about the information they type into a search engine, or the opinions they express in an e-mail message."

The paper reports that one woman had typed in the search term "rent boy" after hearing the term used in a news report. The term, as you may imagine, has sexual connotations, and when she found that out, she immediately told her boyfriend what she had done.

"I told him I'd Googled 'rent boy,' just in case I got whisked off to some Navy prison in the dead of night," she told the newspaper.

Many other people interviewed by the paper worry that searches they've done may be misconstrued, and say that the subpoena has made them think twice before doing searches.

Google is right in fighting the subpoena; other sites like Yahoo!, MSN, and AOL that have turned over the records to the government are wrong.Every day seems to bring a new revelation of how the government is misusing telecommunications to snoop on us. There's only one way to make it stop: Tell your Congressmen it's time to take on the feds by holding hearings, and passing anti-snooping laws.

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