Monday, January 12, 2009

USA's new visa waiver program: fuck privacy

Pardon my french, but this is exactly how it feels. Apparently the amount of control that US borders apply to foreign travellers were not enough and so all citizens of those countries for which no Visa was required (in which Portugal is included) are now required to request a pre-authorization to travel do the USA...starting today...

The pre-authorization is requested at this website, but the funny part is the privacy warning that you get once you enter it:

Besides not having any cancel button (as a possibility for you to "not agree" with these conditions) the warning clearly states that your privacy is not guaranteed and that any information that you enter there can be used by any US official in any means necessary.


Luís Miguel Silva said...

They have the right to do whatever they like in there country.

I know it looks like a dictatorship but they are in fact trying to take care of their country.

It might not be the best way but...who are we to judge? :o)

At least they are very open about what they intend to do...

I travel somewhat frequently to the US and see no problem at all with this. I have nothing to hide so...what's the big deal?

God bless America :o)


António Lopes said...

You're absolutely correct, they have the right to do whatever they want, but should that include the total invasion of privacy?

This is not a question of if "they can", it's a question of if "they should".

This kinda feels like DRM in music: on one had, for "pirates" DRM seldom affects them, as they can easily find new ways to go around it; on the other hand, for people that go by the law and legitimately buy all theirs musics are the ones that are really affected because they are unable to play them freely in every device or platform.

It's the same with these border controls. Honest people are deprived of their right to privacy, while the real terrorists always find ways to go around these techniques and not get affected by them.

Luís Miguel Silva said...

The only thing i want to remind people who bash the US is that it's not the American who makes these rules but a handful of bad seeds...

Regarding "the should" versus "the can", according to the society i live in (and the education i got) it's obviously a very bad thing.

The thing is, i wasn't born there (and, if i was, "i wouldn't be treated that way") :o)

Long story short, i'm pro US and you are against it (or, in the best case, kind of neutral if you can separate what's good from what's bad ;o))

PS: i didn't get any sleep last night so...please forgive me if i was rude in any way! :o)

I'm finding it very hard to think clearly right now...


António Lopes said...

No stress :-)