“‘There’s always that joke that there’s a Starbucks on every corner,’ says Justin Grimes, a statistician with the Institute of Museum and Library Services in Washington. ‘But when you really think about it, there’s a public library wherever you go, whether it’s in New York City or some place in rural Montana. Very few communities are not touched by a public library.’
In fact, libraries serve 96.4 percent of the U.S. population, a reach any fast-food franchise can only dream of.”
Shout out to librarians.
Too bad their budgets don’t approach anything like those two companies. :(
One of the most dramatic examples of how metadata can be used came in the criminal investigation that separately uncovered retired Gen. David Petraeus’s extramarital affair and ended his tenure as Central Intelligence Agency director.
An FBI investigation into a stalking complaint led agents to obtain location data from email addresses used to send the alleged threats, according to U.S. law-enforcement officials. FBI agents discovered the sender had used computers at a several hotels. Agents asked the hotels to provide lists of guests who’d used business centers around that time. That led them to Paula Broadwell, Mr. Petraeus’s biographer. The data was used as probable cause to obtain a court order to monitor Ms. Broadwell’s email accounts. Agents soon realized from her emails that the two were having an affair.
- The Wall Street Journal, “Phones Leave a Telltale Trail”
Erdogan can win by engaging Turkey’s park protesters | Bloomberg
By Hugh Pope
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been in tighter spots: He was thrown in jail for alleged Islamism, saw his last political party closed down and survived a showdown with the once all-powerful Turkish military.
Yet the street protests that erupted first in Istanbul and then across the country at the end of last month present a challenge he has never faced before. So far, he has mishandled the situation, and on June 6 showed no sign of backing down. That’s a mistake, because he has the ability to turn the protests to his advantage and the country’s.
Erdogan is Turkey’s most effective leader since the republic’s founder, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, and much of his success has been based on determination, populist rhetoric and a focus on business. Born into one of Istanbul’s notoriously tough neighborhoods, he is both the unyielding bulldozer of Turkish politics and the fix-it charmer. Almost 50 percent of the population voted for his Justice and Development Party two years ago.
What is happening in Turkey today is mostly about the other 50 percent of the country’s 76 million people. An opinion poll by academics at Istanbul’s Bilgi University found that 70 percent of the protesters had no strong political affiliation. The protests have been full of humor, volunteer enthusiasm, modern women, celebrities and bands of idealistic children skipping school. For the first week, the crowds were leaderless, the only things uniting them being social-media networks and a common slogan: “Tayyip, resign!”
While some are claiming that the situation involving metadata that phone companies are being forced to hand over to the NSA isn’t really as bad as it seems, the truth is, when combined with other information, that metadata can say a ton. Here’s an example in the form of an interactive graphic the German newspaper Die Zeit made of a Green Party politician, Malte Spitz, who sued his phone company to release his data to the newspaper. Die Zeit used the metadata gathered and combined it with publicly available information about Spitz. The results? Well … just click the link and hit play. (thanks Jessica Binsch)