Groundbreaking new book by leading privacy experts launched as government comes under increasing pressure on online spying
Transparent Lives: Surveillance in Canada reveals how Canadians are increasingly leading their lives under pervasive government surveillance and shows how out-of-control government spying can be curbed
Speaking in advance of the launch, Professor David Lyon said: “Since Snowden's revelations, surveillance is in the news. But we often have only a vague and fragmentary sense of what surveillance is or why it's important. Transparent Lives: Surveillance in Canada puts all sorts of surveillance -- on the street, in airports, on social media, carried out by government agencies, police or corporations -- in context. Nine key trends are explained that show why surveillance is growing in particular ways. But it's not just analysis. The book shows how surveillance can be curbed and can serve the common good.”
OpenMedia.ca Executive Director Steve Anderson, who will be speaking at the research workshop on Saturday, said: “This book is a vital expert contribution to the growing nationwide debate about how to rein in out-of-control government spying. This government is spying on Canadians once every 27 seconds, mostly without any warrant or judicial oversight. They’re even pushing controversial bills through Parliament that would make this problem even worse. It’s no wonder that Canadians are speaking up in their tens of thousands to call for modern protections to safeguard our privacy in this digital age.”
The book launch comes at a time when the government is coming under increasing pressure about its surveillance practices - with its Online Spying Bill C-13 coming under tough scrutiny before a House of Commons committee, and with fresh revelations that the government spied on Canadians without a warrant over 1.2 million times in a 12 month period.
The launch takes place from 5-7pm tonight at the University of Ottawa Social Sciences Building (Room 4007, 120 University Private, Ottawa). The launch will be followed by a two day research workshop on The Politics of Surveillance: Advancing Democracy in a Surveillance Society. A number of Protect our Privacy Coalition members will speak at the workshop, including Prof. David Lyon, Prof. Colin Bennett, Prof. Andrew Clement, Dr. Chris Parsons, Micheal Vonn (BCCLA), Tamir Israel (CIPPIC), Vincent Gogolek (BC FIPA), Sukanya Pillay (CCLA), and OpenMedia.ca’s Steve Anderson.
Transparent Lives is also available as a free PDF download by Athabasca University Press. It was funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, and is published in both official languages.
The Privacy Coalition is running a sustained nationwide campaign for effective legal measures to protect Canadians’ privacy from government surveillance. 37,000 Canadians have called on the government to take action at OurPrivacy.ca
OpenMedia.ca is an award-winning community-based organization that safeguards the possibilities of the open Internet. We work toward informed and participatory digital policy by engaging hundreds of thousands of people in protecting our online rights.
Through campaigns such as StopTheMeter.ca and StopSpying.ca, OpenMedia.ca has engaged over half-a-million Canadians, and has influenced public policy and federal law.
About OpenMedia.ca’s privacy campaign
OpenMedia.ca led the successful StopSpying.ca campaign that forced the government to back down on its plans to introduce a costly, invasive, and warrantless online spying law (Bill C-30). Nearly 150,000 Canadians took part in the campaign. To learn more, see this infographic.
On October 10, 2013 OpenMedia.ca collaborated with over 40 major organizations and over a dozen academic experts to form the Protect Our Privacy Coalition, which is the largest pro-privacy coalition in Canadian history. The Coalition is calling for effective legal measures to protect the privacy of every resident of Canada against intrusion by government entities.
OpenMedia.ca and the BC Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) recently announced they will work together to put a stop to illegal government surveillance against law-abiding Canadians. OpenMedia.ca has launched a national campaign encouraging Canadians to support a BCCLA legal action which aims to stop illegal spying by challenging the constitutionality of the government’s warrantless collection of data on Canadians’ everyday Internet use.
Communications Manager, OpenMedia.ca
- Bill C-13 would let authorities obtain private information without a warrant. Source: Michael Geist
- Supposed “cyberbullying” legislation will erode the privacy of Canadians. Source: OpenMedia.ca
- Canada's Lawful Access Bill Appears to Have Contained a Provision to Enable PRISM-Style Surveillance Source: Michael Geist
- Lawful Access back on the agenda this Fall? - Michael Geist.
- Data breach protocols deficient in 9 federal departments, watchdog finds. - [Source: CBC News]
- Internet Law expert Michael Geist on why Canadians should be concerned about government spying.
- In this article, The Globe and Mail describes the revelations about Canadian government spying as “disturbing and unacceptable”
- This document, obtained by The Globe through Access to Information, shows how Minister MacKay authorized a top secret program to data-mine global ‘metadata’ in 2011.