Plausible deniability: The strange and unbelievable similarities in the Apple, Google, and Facebook PRISM denials

“After the news broke yesterday about a secret government surveillance program called PRISM, the companies named in the news reports — led by Google, Apple, and Facebook — responded with denials,” Meghan Kelly writes for VentureBeat. “In effect, they were saying two things: We do not give the government direct access to our servers. And we’ve never heard of PRISM. Some added a third point: We want more sunlight on this issue, too.”

“These denials of the report all seem oddly similar, with Facebook chiming in most recently to also say it hasn’t heard of PRISM,” Kelly writes.

• They aren’t accessing our servers directly
• We have never heard of PRISM
• We want more transparency

“We appreciate that these companies want transparency. They, like us, are probably bruised to be included in a data collection program like this,” Kelly writes. “But it’s important to realize that these statements don’t prove or disprove their involvement in a wider program like PRISM.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: We haven’t seen this much ass-covering since Mike Daisey got fitted for new jeans.

(bah dum chhhh!)

Related articles:
Google’s Larry Page on government eavesdropping: ‘We had not heard of a program called PRISM until yesterday’ – June 7, 2013
Seecrypt app lets iPhone, Android users keep voice calls, text messages away from carriers, government eyes and ears – June 7, 2013
Obama administration defends PRISM data-collection as legal anti-terrorism tool – June 7, 2013
Facebook, Google, Yahoo join Apple in sort-of denying PRISM involvement – June 7, 2013
Report: Intelligence program gives U.S. government direct access to customer data on Apple servers; Apple denies – June 6, 2013


    1. They won’t. It was an atrocity when Bush did it..but now that Obama is doing it.. some more…it’s ok. And hey..they can just say its bush’s fault and ignore the whole election “transparency” and “change” bs.

      1. Based in my reading if the news sources and political blogs, that is not the case. Liberals such as myself are as uneasy with this administration’s data collection as they were with the previous.

        That said, one difference is the the Bush admin did warrantiless wiretapping that was illegal, whereas we do not know if this admin has done wiretapping.

        The second is that this may be legal. Unconstitutional, I think, and probably an over-reach in terms if the laws as they are.

        Liberals were against this before and are now. Conservatives were mostly for it when Bush was in office and are now against it.

        1. Liberals politicians were and are just as for this under Bush as they are under Obama. What’s scary is that there are so many politicians in favor of it.

        2. That’s the thing. We don’t know if what they are doing is legal…even the review that challenged the legality..and the discussions that followed, are off limits. There is a secret court that decides with no oversight.

          1. It may be “legal”, but there’s no doubt this program is totally unconstitutional.

            People should go to jail for NOT whistleblowing this years ago.

            1. Just as unconstitutional as what the US Army was / is doing. But everyone is seeing what the US is doing to people with a conscious. The similarities in how people are being treated and how the public is being manipulated 80 years ago in a different country are frightening. And yes, I’m talking about the Weimar Republic and its descent into fascism.

    2. ““But it’s important to realize that these statements don’t prove or disprove their involvement in a wider program like PRISM.”

      What a neat journalistic trick that statement is. It prolongs the conspiracy story life, because you can’t prove a negative.

      “I didn’t know about that” Prove it. You can’t.

      And for all the baiters of the Patriot Act, its been around for more than a decade, and I’ll bet they can’t produce a single violation of someone’s civil rights resulting from it.

  1. We lose ourselves when we compromise the very ideals that we fight to defend. And we honor those ideals by upholding them not when it’s easy, but when it is hard.

    BARACK OBAMA, Nobel Lecture, Dec. 10, 2009

    I always believe that ultimately, if people are paying attention, then we get good government and good leadership. And when we get lazy, as a democracy and civically start taking shortcuts, then it results in bad government and politics.

    BARACK OBAMA, MSNBC interview, Sep. 25, 2006

    ….2010..Obama renews Patriot act and removes provisions that were added to protect civil liberties. In his weekly address, there was no mention of this, nor was there on the gov blog. They did, in the same week, update Americans on the status of his bum knee.

    1. Democracy:

      A government of the masses.

      Authority derived through mass meeting or any other form of “direct” expression.

      Results in mobocracy.

      Attitude toward property is communistic — negating property rights.

      Attitude toward law is that the will of the majority shall regulate, whether it be based upon deliberation or governed by passion, prejudice, and impulse, without restraint or regard to consequences.

      Results in demagogism, license, agitation, discontent, anarchy.

      Enough said.

      1. The United States of America is a federal republic which is a federation of states with a republican form of government. The U.S. federal republic is a Constitutional Republic which seeks to ensure the rights of individuals and groups within the republic.

  2. Troll Alert,

    “Politically I call myself a ‘Positive Anarchist’ in that I believe in maximum choice. But I also believe in maximum responsibility for our choices, therefore being positive as opposed to irresponsible or negative.” – Derek Currie

    Membership here / members logged-in do not have any more credibility over anyone else posting anonymously.

    These abusive individuals are no more genuine or trust worthy with their comments or posts then the rest of us. They are no more factusal or righteous either. We all have a choice and we all have the freedom to express your own opinions – that is the nature of this blog.

    If another person disagrees with you, there should be no punishment or insults deserving to you. There should be no negative remarks or name calling. There should be respect no matter what.

    Unlike, Derek who feel it is his god given duty to weed out those he feels are trolls. Simply based on his own judgement or choice to disagree, with remarks that are inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic and by which he admits his intent is to provoke others with an emotional response or of otherwise disrupting normal on-topic discussion. That contradicts his own definition of himself.

    His words and actions and his believes tend to be rather warped. If he can not respect others and their posts without responding in a kind and well mannered way… he only degrades himself to the level of troll. And not that of one who polices other trolls.

    Sorry for the interruption.
    Thank you for reading.

    1. I learned that:

      1) My pet stalker anonymous coward troll is in CANADA.
      2) It can’t spell
      3) It spins a wheel to decide what fake nick to use for each post
      4) It doesn’t care about credibility of its posts, only its ability to berzerk [my spelling] others.

      IOW: Beautifully demonstrated trolling.

      Oh and thanks for the publicity about my Mac Security blog for everyone else in Canada. When I’m not enjoying troll trampling, I enjoy helping Mac users. Share and Enjoy. 😉

  3. first a baggy of baking soda becomes “evidence” of terrorism at the UN then all our library checkouts phone conversations and e mails then people are flown to poland on black jets to be properly tortured then we are forced to buy health insurance in order to walk erect on the earth then dibold puts an EXE program in the storage devices in our voting machines and bush gets more votes than there are people in one county then we continue the practice of waging war continuously since 1812 then in order to save money we cut grandmas pill budget and build the most expensive surveillance department ever conceived . then we throw out mashed up kids into rat infested VA hospitals then we blow up citizens with out due process I am sure glad we beat the Russians in the cold war and now they can move here to this country where they feel right at home. then we gerrymander districts to make sure nut cases can run things with the filibuster. then my unemployment and social security becomes a freeloading “entitlement” then arizona privatizes 98% of its prisons taxes the pot smokers and rounds up anybody short and brown to deport and fill the “rooms” you can’t tell the men from the pigs and the pigs from the men ! i am for the first time in my 62 years of life profoundly embarrassed to be an american.

  4. I have more to say. people who have vast amounts of money do not risk it on ventures(job creators) that may or may not fail. they buy bonds from the government . it is not china that we owe all that money to it is the vanderbuilts and the whiteness and the romneys and the rockafellas and the mellons and the rest of the super rich . the interest on these bonds are the bulk of our tax dollars and when paid out it increases the “entitlement ” of these investors . i do not care what country this class of individual lives in i do care that to support them our kids have no paper in our schools to write on and our citizens must pay 90% of our tax money to them instead of fixing bridges putting out fires and filling the holes in our teeth. they object to being taxed because this is where their money comes from. do not get distracted by the size of the debt argument start to ask where this money is really going and realize that taxing it is the only way to slow down (it cant stop them) the rate of growth of this class of individual

    1. Capitalism is the reason this is the greatest country. You sound green with envy of the rich. But you benefit from all of their developments that the free market deems desirable and be nessesity. Obama Hates Induvidual freedom and capitalism. He is a shill for socialist party or worse an opportune. He loves division and wants the working class to feel powerless while he blames the successful and plants the seeds of communism from within. Mark my words. My god. Look at what we have lost with this guy in office. Btw democrats votes en mass for patriot act and. Lame bush how lame.

  5. Just what have you folks been doing that you are afraid the government might find out about? I am amazed at the paranoids here. The government has been doing this for decades. You allow Google, Apple, all sorts of financial organizations to know much about you. You trust them more than the people you elect? Obama did not start this and his successor will not end it. Get a grip folks, the sky is not falling.

  6. even paranoids have enemies joe read some history its an old story

    The Influence and Power of the Morgan and Rockefeller Groups
    The influence of these business leaders was so great that the Morgan and Rockefeller
    groups acting together, or even Morgan acting alone, could have wrecked the economic
    system of the country merely by throwing securities on the stock market for sale, and,
    having precipitated a stock-market panic, could then have bought back the securities they
    had sold but at a lower price. Naturally, they were not so foolish as to do this, although
    Morgan came very close to it in precipitating the “panic of 1907,” but they did not
    hesitate to wreck individual corporations, at the expense of the holders of common
    stocks, by driving them to bankruptcy. In this way, to take only two examples, Morgan
    wrecked the New York, New Haven, and Hartford Railroad before 1914 by selling to it,
    at high prices, the largely valueless securities of myriad New England steamship and
    trolley lines; and William Rockefeller and his friends wrecked the Chicago, Milwaukee,
    St. Paul, and Pacific Railroad before 1925 by selling to it, at excessive prices, plans to
    electrify to the Pacific, copper, electricity, and a worthless branch railroad (the Gary
    Line). These are but examples of the discovery by financial capitalists that they made
    money out of issuing and selling securities rather than out of the production, distribution,
    and consumption of goods and accordingly led them to the point where they discovered
    that the exploiting of an operating company by excessive issuance of securities or the
    issuance of bonds rather than equity securities not only was profitable to them but made it
    possible for them to increase their profits by bankruptcy of the firm, providing fees and
    commissions of reorganization as well as the opportunity to issue new securities.
    Control of Political Parties in America
    When the business interests, led by William C. Whitney, pushed through the first
    installment of civil service reform in 1883, they expected that they would be able to
    control both political parties equally. Indeed, some of them intended to contribute to both
    and to allow an alternation of the two parties in public office in order to conceal their
    own influence, inhibit any exhibition of independence by politicians, and allow the
    electorate to believe that they were exercising their own free choice. Such an alternation
    of the parties on the Federal scene occurred in the period 1880-1896, with business
    influence (or at least Morgan’s influence) as great in Democratic as in Republican
    administrations. But in 1896 came a shocking experience. The business interests
    discovered that they could control the Republican Party to a large degree but could not be
    nearly so confident of controlling the Democratic Party. The reason for this difference lay
    in the existence of the Solid South as a Democratic section with almost no Republican
    voters. This section sent delegates to the Republican National Convention as did the rest
    of the country, but, since these delegates did not represent voters, they came to represent
    those who were prepared to pay their expenses to the Republican National Convention. In
    this way these delegates came to represent the business interests of the North, whose
    money they accepted. Mark Hanna has told us in detail how he spent much of the winter
    of 1895-1896 in Georgia buying over two hundred delegates for McKinley to the
    Republican National Convention of 1896. As a result of this system, about a quarter of
    the votes in a Republican Convention were “controlled” votes from the Solid South, not
    representing the electorate. After the split in the Republican Party in 1912, this portion of
    the delegates was reduced to about 17 percent.

  7. I like your comparisons to past history. Many people have an immediate reaction that “oh, that was 200 years ago and things are different now”. Well, I’ll point out that Euclid invented geometry a couple of thousand years ago, and would still be the smartest kid in math class today if we could beam him forward in time. The great classical musicians wrote their music 300-350 years ago, and with the technology of today would still most likely become the greatest musicians of our day as well.

    The point I’m making is that we are no smarter and not much different than the humans that lived in all generations that came before us. We had rulers, dictators, robbers, rapists, murders, and capitalists and the working class since the beginning of time. I believe the point @taojones2013 is making is that what happened before will happen again if conditions allow for it. It really is true that history will repeat itself given similar conditions. It must repeat itself because we are still humans, and our IQ’s are no better than they were 2000 years ago, and our intentions haven’t changed either.

    I believe the points that @taojones2013 is trying to make should be thought about carefully. This is not a democratic nor republican issue, this is about humanity, history, and the absolute likelihood that history WILL repeat itself under similar circumstances. Once again, thanks for the history lesson. Maybe you should start a blog. Some people, I for one, would carefully read your points–and hopefully others will get your message before it’s too late !

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.