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Back in February I spoke at the “Freedom of Information? panel held in Redfern by Recordkeeping Roundtable. I’ve previously posted the audio of my contribution. Here’s a transcript.

Recordkeeping Roundtable’s website has the raw transcript as supplied, but I’ve decided to edit it up a little to make it more readable. Enjoy.

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The Recordkeeping Roundtable panel “Freedom of Information?” held on 29 February was recorded, and here’s the audio.

The promo, as I told you earlier said:

In a connected world where information sharing is easier and has more impact than ever before, is the current framework of FOI, information security, privacy and archives laws and practices delivering the information society needs in a timely and appropriate way? This panel discussion will be about:

  • assessing the effectiveness of current information access and security laws and methods — are they hopelessly broken?
  • the culture of secrecy and withholding by government agencies
  • how technology and activism offer those with the skills and motivation some alternative and very powerful ways to access and reveal information, and
  • what can be done to address the current state of things and move to better ways of making information available when and where it’s needed.

I was the first speaker, talking about the new, disorderly ways of liberating information, using the Anonymous crack of Stratfor as an example. Since then, though, we’ve discovered that the whole thing might have been an FBI sting operation against WikiLeaks!

Recordkeeping Roundtable has posted the audio of the entire event: opening remarks by moderator Cassie Findlay; me; the speech by former diplomat Dr Philip Dorling, who now leads the journalistic pack in FOI stuff; the speech by Tim Robinson, Manager, Archives and Records Management Services at the University of Sydney; and the question and answer session.

Here, though, is a tweaked and slightly less bandwidth-hungry version of my speech.

Play

[The original audio recording by Cassie Findlay was sampled at 44.1kHz. This version has the audio levels compressed and normalised, and re-sampled to 22.050kHz. It’s posted here under a Creative Commons BY-SA license.]

[Update 26 May 2012: A transcript of what I said is now available.]

A weekly summary of what I’ve been doing elsewhere on the internets. This post covers the week from Monday 9 to Sunday 15 January 2012, posted way late because I’ve been incredibly busy.

Podcasts

  • Patch Monday episode 120, “Anonymous vs. Stratfor: the real issues”, being a nice long interview with Richard Stiennon, chief research analyst with IT-Harvest, a privately-held IT security research firm based in Detroit, Michigan. He also edits and publishes the newsletter Cyber Defence Weekly, and is author of the book Surviving Cyberwar.

Articles

Media Appearances

Corporate Largesse

None. I thought things might start picking up this week, but apparently not.

Elsewhere

Most of my day-to-day observations are on my high-volume Twitter stream, and random photos and other observations turn up on my Posterous stream. The photos also appear on Flickr, where I eventually add geolocation data and tags.

[Photo: Rosellas neat Wentworth Falls, photographed near Railway Parade on 17 January 2012.]

Actually, this message about cybersecurity being a serious emerging theme for 2012 seems to be getting more mainstream coverage than I thought it would. I was part of a cybersecurity panel discussion that was broadcast on ABC Radio National’s Breakfast this morning.

Also taking part were Richard Stiennon, chief research analyst at IT-Harvest in Detroit (I spoke with him about Anonymous and Stratfor on this week’s Patch Monday podcast), and Sean Kopelke, director of security and compliance solutions at Symantec Australia. The host was Jonathan Green, who is usually editor of ABC The Drum.

Over at the ABC’s website you can find the program audio and (perhaps, eventually) transcript. But I’m also including the audio below, just in case their systems fail.

Play

This audio is ©2012 Australian Broadcasting Corporation, of course. Even though we don’t get paid.

A weekly summary of what I’ve been doing elsewhere on the internets, kicking off with a fraud. Weekly Wrap posts are meant to cover what I did in the Monday-to-Sunday week, but the Full Moon photograph was only taken last night.

Well, the weekend and the start of the new week was a bit more hectic than I expected, and this was the only new photo I’d taken that could be used here. Did you really want to see my photos of taxi receipts?

I’d also intended to write a more reflective introduction, cover what it was like living in the wilds of Ryde for the week. But this post is late enough as it is, so you’ll have to live without it.

Podcasts

None. However the Patch Monday podcast returned yesterday, and I think there might well be an episode of The 9pm Edict podcast some time this week too.

Articles

I know I listed my piece for ABC The Drum on the Anonymous hack of Stratfor in last week’s Weekly Wrap, but it was published in the week covered by this post, so here it is again.

Media Appearances

Corporate Largesse

None. Again. When will these PR companies actually start work for 2012?

Elsewhere

Most of my day-to-day observations are on my high-volume Twitter stream, and random photos and other observations turn up on my Posterous stream. The photos also appear on Flickr, where I eventually add geolocation data and tags.

[Photo: Full Moon over Erskineville, photographed last night from Erskineville Road, Sydney. This is the picture as-is using the “night landscape” program setting on the Nikon Coolpix S8100.]

A weekly summary of what I’ve been doing elsewhere on the internets. This was expected to be a short, easy week between Christmas and New Year, but when news of the Anonymous hack on Stratfor broke, well, that was it. It dominated everything except my personal podcast.

There’s still some end-of-year start-of-year posts to come, but I’ll deal with them over the next few days. I actually took the holiday weekend as a holiday.

Podcasts

  • The 9pm Edict episode 16, which had rather a lot about Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s Christmas Message, and a fair amount about Twitter. It thought this episode was a bit weaker than others recently, because I didn’t seem to channel the rage. But I’ve been told it’s OK. I shrug my shoulders.
  • The 9pm Edict episode 17, which was put together in a pub on New Year’s Eve, interrupted by the pub closing early, and filled with more than the usual number of expletives. The bits of the script that had to be left out will appear in a special bonus episode soon.

Articles

The one written piece I did about the Stratfor hack shouldn’t be listed in this Weekly Wrap, technically, because it wasn’t published until 2 January. But I’ll list it here anyway for compeleteness.

Media Appearances

Corporate Largesse

None. I have been abandoned. It’s not like PR companies are real families.

Elsewhere

Most of my day-to-day observations are on my high-volume Twitter stream, and random photos and other observations turn up on my Posterous stream. The photos also appear on Flickr, where I eventually add geolocation data and tags.

[Photo: The Meaning of Life, Part 1. This uniform was worn by nearly every woman under 25 partying in Sydney on New Year’s Eve. Photograph taken near the corner of George and Goulburn Streets, Sydney.]

So there I was, having a quiet drink late on Friday night, chatting on Twitter with Crikey’s Bernard Keane and journalist Gabriella Lahti about the Stratfor hack, when who should poke his head over the parapet but Jason Jordan, who was about to present 6PR’s Nightline

Long story short, less than half an hour later I’m live on air chatting about the whole thing, including who Anonymous are and what their motives might be, and what might happen next.

Thanks to technical difficulties my end I couldn’t record 6PR’s audio stream, and there wasn’t time to sort that out before we went live. So this audio was recorded my end, and that means I sound just fine on my quality microphone and the radio station is at the other end of the phone.

I’ve left in a bit of my conversation with the producer before and after so you can experience The Magic of Radio. Technically that’s a breach of the NSW Surveillance Devices Act 2007 because I didn’t seek permission first but, like, shut up.

Yes, it really was just two seconds from me getting ready to being live on air.

Play

The audio is ©2011 Radio 6PR Perth Pty Ltd, but since they don’t archive these interviews I reckon it’s fair enough putting it here provided you just listen to it and I link back to 6PR and encourage you to listen. If you’re in Perth. Or if you want to stream it.

I was interviewed for ABC TV’s current affairs program 7.30 yesterday about Anonymous’ hack of Stratfor. The story was Hack attack reveals Australians’ credit card details.

Interestingly, they chose to focus on the “liberation” of the credit card numbers and how it affected the Australian victims.

They didn’t use any of the material we recorded on who the various victims might be, what the still-to-come publication of some 2.7 million of Stratfor’s internal emails might reveal, and the effect that could have on both Stratfor and the individuals who’ve been feeding them information.

Indeed, this article by Barrett Brown makes it clear that those emails and other internal documents were the real target, not the credit card numbers. Anonymous is trying to give the impression that there’s some powerful stuff in there, but we’ll see.

I guess when you’ve only got six minutes and have to start with “Who is Anonymous?” and “Who is Stratfor?” then there’s not really enough time to get to “This is really a follow-up to Anonymous’ hack of HBGary Federal earlier in the year.”

Careful viewers will notice that reporter Sara Everingham described me as someone who “goes by the name Stilgherrian”, which is a bit of an oops but something that seemed to cause more distress to my Twitter followers than me.

Since some people have asked, I might as well tell you that the interview was shot in a spare office at the ABC’s Ultimo headquarters — rather different from the outdoor shot the last time I was on 7.30.

And despite the story being written and voiced by Sara Everingham, I was actually interviewed by Sarah Dingle. Ah, the Magic of Television!

The video in the story is Flash, so it won’t work on your iDevice. But there’s also an MP4 version of the video.

I was scheduled to talk about the year 2011 in technology on 1395 FIVEaa Adelaide this morning, but with the news that Malcolm Turnbull’s credit card details were exposed in the Stratfor hack that too was on the agenda.

The original plan was to cover the kinds of issues raised in my 2011 tech wrap for Crikey and the Patch Monday podcast episodes 2011: the year in security and 2011: IT’s year of consolidation.

We also covered computer support for the electoral roll and computerised voting, since Senator Cory Bernardi had raised the subject of people casting multiple votes and how only a handful of alleged cases had been prosecuted.

While I supported the idea of an online electoral roll, I spoke against online voting. I’ve written about that before at ABC’s The Drum, Electronic voting a threat to democracy.

The regular presenters were on holidays, so the host was William Goodings.

Play

The audio is ©2011 dmgRadio Australia, but here it is ‘cos it hasn’t been posted on the radio station’s website. Besides, this is a reasonable plug.

[Update 0910: Link added to article on electronic voting.]

Crikey logo

“This is it. The big one. This is the first revolution that has been catapulted onto a global stage and transformed by social media,” says Clay Shirky, professor at New York University and author of the book Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations. And what’s had the greatest impact? “It’s Twitter,” says Shirky.

So starts my piece in Crikey yesterday, We’re all wearing green for Iran now, apparently.

The article covers two main points.

One, this isn’t really the first time demonstrations have been organised or teargas reported via Twitter. Try Bangkok in October 2008. Try Chişinău in April 2009. And as Business Week pointed out, A Twitter revolution? Hardly.

Two, people are changing their avatars green to “support democracy in Iran” based on very little information. And as commenter Rena Zurawel claimed:

Whether it is a Rose Revolution in Georgia, or Orange Revolution in the Ukraine or a Green revolution in Iran — the source and inspiration is exactly the same: $70 million decided by the Congress to spend on so called “democratic changes in Iran”.

That last point intrigued me, so I poked around a bit.

I found this 2008 report from STRATFOR Global Intelligence: Geopolitical Diary: Iran, Psywar and the Hersh Article which is reproduced in full over the jump.

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