Gareth Hughes

Why our website has gone black

by Gareth Hughes

No, we haven’t been hacked and no, it’s not a technical glitch. It’s on purpose. Today the Green’s joined nearly 6000 other websites that have gone black as part of a global day of action against mass surveillance by blacking out their website to stand up for Internet freedom.

Today, Tuesday 11th February is ‘The Day We Fight Back.’ The organisers say:

Together we will push back against powers that seek to observe, collect, and analyze our every digital action. Together, we will make it clear that such behavior is not compatible with democratic governance. Together, if we persist, we will win this fight.

I’m proud the Greens are standing with thousands of others around the world, standing up for Internet freedom and protesting against the global surveillance state that we know exists. The right of citizens to freely use the Internet without the fear of surveillance is a fundamental right that is being undermined worldwide, including in New Zealand. Rather than taking a stand and promoting New Zealand as a leader in privacy and security, this National Government has bowed down to the United States and changed our spy laws in order to facilitate the global surveillance state.

Snowden and Dotcom have busted this issue wide open and I just wish were the catalyst for New Zealand to act for good. Ending mass surveillance and promoting internet freedom is not just the right thing to do, it is also a business opportunity supporting the innovative ICT sector and cloud computing. The Greens take privacy and internet freedom seriously and we would:

  • Repeal the recent changes to the GCSB and TICS Acts.
  • Close the Waihopai spy base, which facilitates our membership of the Five Eyes intelligence network.
  • And take Internet termination for copyright infringement off our law books and promote a sensible copyright debate.

Today is a start. As the campaign says, today we fight back.

Published in Environment & Resource Management by Gareth Hughes on Tue, February 11th, 2014   

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