Yesterday was typical in that, in scanning my Twitter feed, I was becoming incredibly irritated with Conservative Party of Canada. The source this time was Vic Toews’ tabling a bill to allow police, spies, and federal bureaucrats to collect information about the digital services Canadians use—without a warrant.
So the same party who insisted that the long-form census and the long-gun registry, despite their incredible value, had to be done away with to protect Canadians’ privacy—think having access to everything we all do online is just fine.
Ontario’s privacy commissioner also pointed out that pooling all this data was very dangerous, as it would be a “gold mine” for the hackers that you know would get at it.
In response to complaints, Vic Toews said that people were either with him or with child pornographers! He even gave the Bill the 1984-esque monikor of The Protecting Children from Internet Predators Act, even though it covers far more than pornographic activity online.
Criticism was widespread, and not only from the usual suspects. The Sun, the Post, blogging Tories, even Margaret Wente wrote a very thoughtful article on why she was “with the child pornographers” on this one.
But the funniest stuff was online, particularly on Twitter.
The first salvo was from new account @Vikileaks30, which just pumps out facts about Mr. Toews, starting with ugly divorce from his wife, precipitated by his having an affair with impregnating a much younger woman. Though some called it an invasion of privacy, it’s actually all part of the public record. Unlike the information the government wants to store about us.
But today took the cake. Today #TellVicEverything was trending. These were a series of tweets, with that hash tag, often also directed to Mr. Toews real Twitter account, sparing Toews the bother of spying on us by just telling him everything we’re doing.
And it was hilarious. Oh, my God, Canadians are funny. (Not me. Mine was lame.) And busy! There was no keeping with it. But I’d just check in every couple hours or so for latest, and laugh…
A tiny sample…
Hey, everybody! You either #TellVicEverything or you side with the child pornographers.
And by the way…
This bill is actually going to committee now instead of to second reading, as would normally be the case. You may think that’s nothing, but with this band of time allocation junkies (they already have limited debate on more bills than any other government in Canadian history), it is waving a white flag. Unlike the many other bad bills recently, they will actually entertain amendments to this one.
Never underestimate the power of the Twitterverse.