ABA-MIT Appathon: Standards for Warrant Canaries

Abstract:

A warrant canary is pro-business civil disobedience for the new digital age. It is a method for preventing gag orders by posting a notice that says that an organization has never received a gag order. Once the organization does receive a request accompanied by a gag order, the statement disappears (the canary dies).

Body:

A warrant canary is pro-business civil disobedience for the new digital age. It is a method for preventing gag orders by posting a notice that says that an organization has never received a gag order. Once the organization does receive a request accompanied by a gag order, the statement disappears (the canary dies).

The project is housed at http://canarywatch.org and led by Nicholas Merrill, the ISP CEO who was the anonymous plaintiff in Doe v. Holder https://www.aclu.org/national-security/doe-v-holder.

The website posts links to warrant canaries. The process of finding and linking to canaries could be streamlined if companies that are posting warrant canaries better understood how to make it easy for the canarywatch website to locate their canaries. This project will establish standards to do so.

I am a Brooklyn Law School alum and BLIP clinic alum with a background in technical writing and technology journalism.

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Tags:

4th Amendment
Privacy
Legal
warrant

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github@jwalsh.net

  • Tooling: 3
  • Usability: 4
  • Value: 4
  • Lifespan: 5
  • Novelty: 3
  • Comments:
    The current implementation is smooth and it addresses and interesting problem.