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First Amendment

Think Your Emails are Private? Think Again…

Now that our communication with others is mostly electronic, we would think that the laws that govern our communications and the protections that we receive regarding those communications would evolve as well. Not.so. Ordinarily, when the government wants to search your mail, or your office records, or really any of your person, place, or things, they must get a search warrant that is supported by probable cause.
However, a 1968 law (note: this is way before ipad’s, computers, internet, cell phone, etc.), the Electronic Communications Privacy (yeah right!) Act, allows the government to search certain emails, cell phone records and other electronic communications by showing only that they have reasonable grounds to believe the information will be relevant and material to an investigation. This is a laughable standard and very easy to prove- almost anything can be arguably relevant to an investigation.
The worst part about this law is that the court orders that allow the government to have access to these communications are secret- meaning you will never know that the government has been reading your emails. Additionally, the government usually prevents the ISP or company that provides you your electronic service from notifying you that they have given access to the government.
If you think that this law is unacceptable, you should write to your senators and tell them to repeal this law and require that officers obtain search warrants supported by probable cause before invading your electronic privacy. Most importantly, BEWARE OF WHAT YOU SAY ELECTRONICALLY!

Say Cheese! Court Upholds the Right to Video the Cops

Say Cheese! Court Upholds the Right to Video the Cops


Recently a Boston court upheld a lawsuit against the city and police for violating a citizen’s right to video the police in public. As reported from PetaPixel.com this is great news for citizen rights. David Michael Cantor, a Phoenix Criminal Defense Lawyer, discusses how he has seen similar cases in the last year and that it is encouraging to see the courts uphold this right.

As a side note PetaPixel does sell a Photographers Rights Grey Card Set which has the dual purpose of getting your white balance right and helping your know your rights.

Prior Story:
Nationwide Trend? Police Deleting Video Evidence

Bad Service America: Diner for Schmucks


Today’s topic starts with an article in the current issue of GQ and food critic Alan Richman’s latest review. The title and opening illustration give you a hint that this review is not going to be a good one. Alan describes going to M. Wells on a few occasions. the first two were unannounced and simply to eat. By the third visit he had spoken with the owners to get an offsite interview and let them know he had already made plans to dine there in a few days. The food part of the review is pretty fair and would probably tempt a number of people to go for dinner. Then Alan’s story takes a turn for the worse. The service takes an already ho-hum reputation and nose dives into what one of his compatriots describes as “the worst restaurant experience I’ve ever had.”
In the review Alan comments about how the waitstaff was innatentive and careless. This has unfortunately become a bit of the norm in the US dining establishments and the workplace in general. At the third dinner they wait 45 minutes and finally wave down another waitress who seemed less than happy to be taking their order. He leaves and gets an email the next day from the co-owner blaming him for having a bad dining experience and then the fireworks go off: he is accused of sexual assaulting the waitress. Needless to say Alan is pretty shocked and replies back asking to meet his accuser.
The article is really well written and we recommend picking up the latest issue and reading it for yourself.
In David’s video his recaps these events but then goes a little further regarding the poor service and some of Alan’s thoughts on the “Too Cool to Care” attitude. The hipster mentality may be going too far or too ironically for many of Americans to appreciate any longer.
What do you think?

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