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NEWS & FEATURES

 

Seven Signs That You Are Being Lied To

LINDA PRESTON

Would you know if someone was lying to you? Most of us like to think we would but every once in awhile we have to admit to ourselves that someone has pulled the wool over our eyes.

Private US Group Plans Mars Fly-by
in 2018

Plans are underway for the first manned mission to Mars -- just five years from now. The privately financed fly-by in 2018 would take a man and a woman -- both Americans -- on a modified existing U.S. spacecraft to within 160 kilometers of the surface of the Red Planet, and return them safely to Earth.

Spanish Is Not Only a Language ...

Spanish is not only a language, it is the heart of a culture, religion and history, and a communication tool shared by nearly 500 million people in 21 countries.

Mahjong Mysteries - Ancient Athena on Nintendo 3DS™ eShop Released

cerasus.media launched Mahjong Mysteries – Ancient Athena on Nintendo’s eShop service. Accompany the famous adventurer David on his most mysterious mission yet - the one that will change everything!

AC/DC Now on iTunes

Complete Catalog Available Digitally for the First Time; All Tracks Mastered for iTunes

Columbia Records and Apple® announced that AC/DC’s entire catalog is now available digitally for the first time exclusively on the iTunes Store® worldwide (www.itunes.com). From their 1976 debut High Voltage to seminal classic Back In Black and 2008 smash hit Black Ice, every one of AC/DC’s 16 studio albums, along with four live albums and three compilation albums, are available for the first time ever on the iTunes Store.

TV and the Internet: A Marriage
Made in Entertainment Heaven

If you have bought a new television lately, the chances are it is a lot smarter than your old one. Smart TVs, also known as connected or hybrid televisions, featuring integrated internet connectivity, currently account for around a third of TV sales in Europe. They are the end point in a huge and rapidly expanding value chain driven by the intensifying convergence of television and the internet.

 



America Under Surveillance


America Under Surveillance - A Congressional Debate

MICHAEL BOWMAN
VOA News
Capitol Hill, Washington D.C.

Top U.S. intelligence and law enforcement officials say the government’s vast domestic data collection activities do not infringe on citizens’ privacy but do help identify and defeat terrorist threats. Officials testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee hours after the Obama administration released documents detailing telephone data collection programs exposed by former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden.

Revelations that the U.S. government collects telephone records have unnerved many Americans, according to committee chairman Patrick Leahy.

“I think the patience of the American people is beginning to wear thin. But what has to be of more concern in a democracy is the trust of the American people is wearing thin," he said.

On July 31, 2013 the Obama administration released previously-classified documents on the extent and limitations of federal telephone snooping.

“These are telephone records maintained by the phone companies. They include the number the call was dialed from, the number the call was dialed to, the date and time of the call and the length of the call," said Deputy Attorney General James Cole. "The records do not include the names or other identifying information. They do not include cell site [cellular telephone location] or other location information, and they do not include the content of any phone calls."

Actual monitoring of phone calls requires special court authorization. Overall, data collection has helped defeat terrorists, according to National Security Agency Deputy Director John Inglis.

“There were 54 plots that were disrupted over the life of these two programs," he said.

The House of Representatives recently voted down a proposal to limit telephone data collection. Similarly, senators showed no inclination to terminate the programs - but did express dismay over the lack of voluntary public disclosure.

“We have a lot of good information out there that helps the American public understand these programs," said Democrat Sheldon Whitehouse. "But it all came out late. It all came out in response to a leaker [Edward Snowden]. There was no organized plan for how we rationally declassify this so that the American people can participate in the debate."

Vast data collection has a chilling effect on freedom, according to Jameel Jaffer of the American Civil Liberties Union.

“People who know the government could be monitoring their every move, their every phone call, or their every Google search will comport themselves differently. They will hesitate before visiting controversial websites. They will hesitate before joining controversial advocacy groups. They will hesitate before exercising rights that the Constitution guarantees," he said.

Not so, says Robert Litt, general counsel in the office of the Director of National Intelligence.

“Collection of this kind of telephone meta-data from the telephone companies is not a violation of anyone’s constitutional rights," he said.

Litt said that disclosure of the programs has damaged the government’s ability to protect the nation.

U.S. Secret Court Renews Phone Surveillance Program

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