CoT: definitely not going to bomb a plane

deviance from social norms can be an early indicator of terroris

http://globalguerrillas.typepad.com/johnrobb/2006/01/data_mining_run.html

"Databases track Americans' networks of friends, family and associates, not just to identify who is a terrorist but to try to predict who might become one... The idea was that disparate, seemingly mundane behaviors can reveal criminal intent when viewed together. More disturbing, it assumed that deviance from social norms can be an early indicator of terrorism."

"Google is likely central to the Internet portion of this effort. There's no doubt in my mind that Google has a fat contract with the Homeland Security Department. They can track your search behavior using cookies. Affiliates using cookies on adwords. Analyze the content of your weblog for dangerous phrases. Anonymity doesn't help. They have your IP address and therefore can get the records they need to put a name and a credit history next to your Internet behavior (all without a warrant)."

I feel so very safe indeed.
Permalink son of parnas 
January 13th, 2006
McKinstry was right!!!
Permalink Generic Error 
January 13th, 2006
Oy.

I don't mean to be difficult, or anything, but PLEASE put refrences next to your quotes.

Oy.

I don't mean to be difficult, or anything, but PLEASE put refrences next to your quotes.

Your first quote is from Laura Donahue, at Stanford University, as quoted in the LATimes.

Your second quote is from John Robb's Weblog (whoever the hell he is), which is where you got the LATimes quote.

Putting them together, as you have, makes John Robb's "likely speculation" and "I'm sure" statements look like it's a conclusion of the first author -- which it isn't, it's an extrapolation which ignores legality.

I actually agree with you that this level of monitoring is possible, and is a concern. But to maintain our own credibility, we need to avoid distorting the record ourselves.
Permalink AllanL5 
January 13th, 2006
Isn't terrorism _defined_ as a deviation from social norms?
Permalink KayJay 
January 13th, 2006
Sorry about the garbling, I edited this off line...
Permalink AllanL5 
January 13th, 2006
Perhaps terrorism is a deviation from social norms, but so is spitting on the sidewalk. Sidewalk spitters shouldn't be sent to Guantanamo, though.
Permalink AllanL5 
January 13th, 2006
"I editted this offline.."

err.. what?


yeah, you should probably cite your quotes, to avoid confusion.
Permalink Generic Error 
January 13th, 2006
" Perhaps terrorism is a deviation from social norms, but so is spitting on the sidewalk. "

Not where I live.
Permalink MarkTAW 
January 13th, 2006
Yeah you've got to be kidding. All the high school boys ever do here is spit. Like, step-step-spit, step-step-spit. Personally I don't get it.
Permalink Generic Error 
January 13th, 2006
> Isn't terrorism _defined_ as a deviation from social norms?

Terrorism isn't clearly defined. This is partly why it is so useful to the government.
Permalink Colm O'Connor 
January 13th, 2006
>Isn't terrorism _defined_ as a deviation from social norms?
Let's see, in my neighborhood, going to church is unusual, therefore people who go to church are deviating from social norms. Therefore all church goers are terrorists.

mmm. Logic chopping is fun.
Permalink Peter 
January 13th, 2006
If 'church going' included all faiths then eliminating their members might ameliorate the situation. Until someone thought of another rabid reason to blow someone else up.

Say about 5 seconds.
Permalink Simon Lucy 
January 13th, 2006
Ah, so you live in the Middle East ;-)
Permalink Colm O'Connor 
January 13th, 2006
> I don't mean to be difficult, or anything, but
> PLEASE put refrences next to your quotes.

What difference would it have made to you, given you had a link to the source if you were really interested?
Permalink son of parnas 
January 13th, 2006
Because the issue you raise is an important one. The first quote indicates that the Govenment is interested in using data mining, and may have in mind that they should look for "deviance from social norms".

The second quote takes that issue and blows it out of proportion by throwing in pure speculation with "likely" and "I have no doubt" statments, including Government access to Google records.

Connecting those two, as if they were from the same author, reduces the importance of the first quote. The factual nature of the first quote can be lost, sounding like just more extreme speculation. Which it is not.

The result is that you yourself then seem to be joining those who are jumping at shadows. Raising the FUD factor with panicky speculations over straw-man issues that can be safely dismissed.

This is NOT a strawman issue, and I hate to see it argued like one.
Permalink AllanL5 
January 13th, 2006
I'm not sure why you think terrorism isn't that clear... its an act of force or violence with the intent of creating terror. Spitting on the sidewalk does not instill terror in a group of people.
Permalink Phil 
January 13th, 2006
Of course McKinstry is right. Get used to it.
Permalink Chris McKinstry 
January 13th, 2006
>I'm not sure why you think terrorism isn't that clear...
>its an act of force or violence with the intent of
>creating terror.

That exactly matches the "shock and awe" tactics of the US military. So in that sense the US military is a terrorist force.

Some would say they are, I guess.

Before you bring up "against civilians", please note that two out of the four 9/11 planes were NOT directed at civilian targets.

Before you bring up the civilians on those planes, note that the US military has a name for these types of civilians: "collateral damage".
Permalink Colm 
January 13th, 2006
Colm, in the WoT, there is no civilian, there is no miltary. There is only a clear distinction between the neck-tied individuals waxing eloquent on the need to establish a democratic, free market, loose assembly of territories and the head-bound individuals vociferously demanding a theocratic, definitely bordered, controlled economic and political entities. Indeed, it is ironic that in the WoT, resorting to violence is what that is common between the two sides.
Permalink KayJay 
January 13th, 2006
> This is NOT a strawman issue, and I hate to see it argued like one.

No idea what you are referring to but I will try to give sources in the future.
Permalink son of parnas 
January 13th, 2006
The govt is using data mining because they have this magical belief that there exists some predictor of violent_behavior/terrorism/being_a_bad_guy. Such predictors will obviously require very low type_1/type_2 errors [1]. Currently, we use things like CAPPS, which has some 80,000 names in it. These are people too guilty to let on airplanes, yet too innocent to put on trial [2]. For example, for passengers on airlines, if the predictor has a 0.1% false positive rate, it will single out thousands of false positives each and every day. That many false positives drown out the system (because every false positive has to be verified) and cause everyone to disbelieve any further cries of WOLF WOLF from the predictor.

Similarily, the Japanese believe that there is some magical predictor of earthquakes. Once this predictor can be uncovered, the number of fatalities in quakes will drop. Since they are looking for a predictor, they aren't going to bother with building codes calling for reinforcing buildings, or designing them to survive quakes. In contrast, the building codes in California were devised under the presumption that quakes are unpredictable (other than "you'll get one" sooner or later), so the building codes were developed to make buildings and roadways less likely to kill folks in quakes. As a result, when quakes happen in CA, few people die, whereas in Japan, large numbers of people die every quake.

Magical predictors don't work. They require the ability to accurately determine human intention from behavior: which requires telepathy and time travel. They also require the ability to accurately measure reality, which is something this administration has repeatedly proven that they are incapable of doing. This administration prefers wishful thinking and magical solutions to their problems.

Notes:
1 - A type 1 error is a false positive: your predictor says "bad" and the reality is "good." A type 2 error is a false negative: your predictor says "good" and the reality is "bad." Some people reverse types 1&2, which isn't really important, just defining the errors and being consistant is important.
2 - The government is also using the no-fly list portion of CAPPS to harass and intimidate political opponents.
Permalink Peter 
January 13th, 2006
"Similarily, the Japanese believe that there is some magical predictor of earthquakes."

I think Japanese's preparations for earthquakes like building codes and such are ok; just that they don't expect serious earthquakes in some areas, e.g. Kobe & Osaka where last big one strikes.
Permalink Rick Tang 
January 13th, 2006
>> Databases track Americans' networks of friends, family and associates, not just to identify who is a terrorist but to try to predict who might become one... <<


Me! Me!  Me!

Pick me!!!!







Awwwww.
Permalink example 
January 13th, 2006
"just that they don't expect serious earthquakes in some areas, e.g. Kobe & Osaka"

That's like expecting it not to rain in England.
Permalink Ian Boys 
January 13th, 2006
Colm, I wouldn't argue shock and awe as not being terrorism, because terroism can be against military targets (USS Cole). I'd say its only not terrorism because it is a state sponsored military doing the action. Therefore if the Libyan army shoots down one of our jets, that is not terrorism, its an act of war, but if a group of random libyans did it, it would be terrorism.
Permalink Phil 
January 13th, 2006
Right.

So strictly speaking the American war of independence was fought by terrorists.

And the marsh Arabs who fought against Saddam Hussein were terrorists.

And, incredibly, an American jet in Libya (presumeably not there to drop roses) shot down by random Libyans is a terrorist act.
Permalink Colm O'Connor 
January 14th, 2006
Greenpeace are terrarists.
Permalink Jap Whaler 
January 14th, 2006
Because they own Terrariums?
Permalink Simon Lucy 
January 14th, 2006
" and the head-bound individuals vociferously demanding a theocratic, definitely bordered, controlled economic and political entities."


Is it just me, or does that describe the bush administration perfectly?

so which side was our side again?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
January 14th, 2006

This topic was orginally posted to the off-topic forum of the
Joel on Software discussion board.

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