The Daily Telegraph reported this morning that the Coalition would shortly introduce a raft of new surveillance laws based on almost all of the recommendations handed down last year in a report by the the Joint Parliamentary Committee on Intelligence and Security on potential reforms to Australia's National Security Legislation.

It's no secret that a large percentage of the technology sector thinks that the current proposal by Federal Attorney-General George Brandis (pictured) to crack down on Internet piracy will have little impact, given that most such attempts in the fast have broadly failed, and the commonly held belief that commercial avenues represent the best way to handle the situation. However, some commentators feel things will go still further. Veteran telecommunications analyst Paul Budde wrote this morning on his blog that he expects the anti-piracy measures to actually increase piracy.

The revelations of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden have altered the way we think about accountability, transparency and the rule of law with regard to both the activities of security agencies and the value of privacy, according to a detailed report released this week. But this change in thinking has not led to practical reform, according to the report.

If you thought you had a solid grip on just how extensive Government surveillance of our electronic communications systems was, think again. The revelations just keep coming. Late last week mobile telco Vodafone revealed an extensive bucket list of surveillance measures which are used by governments in dozens of countries it operates in — including Australia — to retrieve information about its customers.

National broadband provider iiNet has published a sharp blog post accusing the Federal Government of going down the "wrong path" with respect to its efforts to tackle Internet piracy, with the ISP exhorting its customers to become politically active in speaking to politicians from all parties about the issue.

A research paper produced internally by the Reserve Bank of Australia 12 months ago has shown the nation's central bank was at that stage not concerned about the potential impact of the Bitcoin crypto-currency on Australia's financial system, due to what it saw as the "limited" impact of a "niche product".

Into the e-surveillance miasma comes David Leyonhjelm, the new Senator-Elect for the Liberal Democrats, who will take his chair in just six short weeks. In a piece for the Financial Review newspaper late last week, Leyonhjelm makes it very clear where his party will stand on this issue: In opposition to data retention and similar initiatives which erode Australians’ privacy.

Visions of a cashless society started being portrayed from the 1950’s along with other aspects of a future waiting to be transformed by technology. That future has not yet arrived but it is now possible to exist without using cash on a daily basis. In fact, in a survey released this week, 25% of Australians claim not to use cash in a given month. In the US, 50% of Americans carry less than $20 in cash at any time.

Most Australians understand that the only solution to the nation's record Internet piracy rates is for the film and TV industry to follow the music, book and gaming sectors and make their content available online in a timely, affordable and convenient manner. But that's a truth rights holders and their lobbyists seem unwilling to accept.

The Pirate Party Australia has launched a high-profile online petition inviting Australians to protest against two proposals reportedly set to be introduced by Attorney-General George Brandis to Federal Cabinet which could see Australians who pirate content online receive warnings and Internet service providers forced to block file-sharing sites such as the Pirate Bay.

Remember how Federal Attorney-General George Brandis a while back publicly floated several ideas about how the Federal Government could tackle the thorny issue of Internet piracy? Remember how most people kind of assumed there would be some kind of consultation process where industry and hell, you know, ordinary Australians, could put forward views on the issue? Ah, those were the days. News arrived from the Sydney Morning Herald this morning that Brandis has already developed several proposals and is taking them to the Abbott Cabinet.

Those who have been wondering when the Australian Taxation Office would follow the US Internal Revenue Service and make a formal ruling on how cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin should be taxed now have an answer. According to the Financial Review (we recommend you click here for the full article), the ATO has just opened a review into the issue.

In the last fortnight, senior executives from cinema operators in Australia, including Village Roadshow and Palace Cinemas, have come out defending their decision to raise movie ticket prices. But do their arguments hold water?

The lack of hard, unbiased research driving this debate on piracy, as well as the privileged access to the Attorney General that entertainment industry lobbyists seem to have, does not bode well for robust, evidence-based policy being adopted in the near future.

Australian movie and TV streaming company Quickflix yesterday announced the beginning of what it believes to be "a new-era in affordable home entertainment" with the launch of its new subscription options to its IPTV service, including streaming of TV shows and movies for only $9.99 per month.

Film and entertainment giant Village Roadshow is decidedly unhappy with Google Australia for taking what the search giant believes is a realistic approach to dealing with Internet piracy. Go figure.

If you've attended an Australian cinema recently, you'll be aware that $20 ticket prices are now a thing. If you just hit up a film every couple of weeks and avoid the cinema's high-priced junk food aisle (your writer habitually goes to Woolworths for some snacks beforehand), then this mark may not seem like such a huge deal. But if you throw a family into the mix, a night out at the movies can now seem a little too exorbitant for many. According to several cinema executives, one of the central reasons for the ongoing price increases is Internet piracy.

A key lobbyist for the anti-piracy group originally known as the Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft enjoys a congenial email relationship with the secretary of the Attorney-General's Department and other senior officials, a Freedom of Information request has revealed, with the lobbyist regularly using the channel to pass on anti-piracy propaganda.

Virtual currency Bitcoin is not a subject that ever draws neutral reactions. Against those who see the radical possibilities of a frictionless payment system designed for the internet, there is a growing resistance to the currencies that threaten existing business models and the perceived traceability of our current currency systems.

Last week the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) ruled that data retention regulations, as they currently stand, are not in accordance with EU law and the European Parliament voted in favour of introducing net neutrality into EU telecoms regulation the week before. As Australia is currently in the midst of a data retention inquiry – the second in three years – what effects will this ruling have on the debate?

The argument by pay television giant Foxtel that the launch of its new Play IPTV streaming video service will cause Australians' objections about the lack of legitimate access to popular shows such as Game of Thrones to "vanish" is nothing short of ridiculous and strongly indicates that the company still has no idea why the nation is so frustrated with it.

It probably won't come as a surprise to those who have followed Game of Thrones piracy news over the past several years (an important genre in technology journalism in its own right), but Australia appears to have set a new record in terms of copyright infringement of the flagship HBO series.

So you've seen the reports about Federal Attorney-General George Brandis resuscitating the failed talks between ISPs and content owners about the pesky problem of Internet piracy? Have you ever wondered what measures the rights-holders feel should be taken to address such issues? Fear not, industry publication Mumbrella has published an extensive article detailing their demands. And it appears they want rather a lot.

Greens Communications Spokesperson Scott Ludlam looks set to be re-elected to the Senate for another six years in Western Australia's Senate by-election, with projections late on Saturday night showing the technology-focused politician had easily won a full Senate quota.

One of Australia's largest telcos, iiNet, has sent the Australian Senate committee examining reform of national telecommunications interception legislation an extremely strongly worded statement warning of the dangers of extending or even maintaining current data retention and website blocking practices.

Greens Communications Spokesperson Scott Ludlam has labelled the revelation this week of relatively unqualified support for data retention and mass surveillance by Tanya Plibersek as "shameful", accusing the Deputy Labor Leader of being naive or manipulative in public statements made on the issue.

Those of you who've been hanging around the tracks for a while may remember a famous piece of newspaper graffiti which was published a while back regarding Prime Minister John Howard and his musical abilities. Well, it's taken us a while, but we've now been able to find a Federal Politician who can actually DJ quite well. Or so it appears from these glamour pics of Greens Communications Spokesperson Scott Ludlam, who spent some time DJ'ing at a rave held to fundraise for his WA Senate campaign this month.

Those of you with a long memory will recall that Australia’s video game classification systems hasn’t precisely always been without controversy. Well, in what looks like a good move on the surface, Australia appears set to join a new international system for video game classification.

Wondering how the MP widely considered likely to become the eventual next leader of the Australian Labor Party views the controversial data retention and surveillance issue? Wonder no more. Deputy Leader of the Opposition and former Health, Human Services and Housing Minister Tanya Plibersek is all for it.

Greens senator Scott Ludlam is reportedly trying to have Edward Snowden and Julian Assange called before a parliamentary committee to give evidence into what they might know about mass surveillance of Australian citizens.

Digital rights political party the Pirate Party Australia this week claimed that a parliamentary submission made by the Attorney-General's Department (AGD) arguing for substantially increased government electronic surveillance powers indicated that the Department was little more than a "puppet" and "lobbyist for law enforcement and intelligence agencies".

A brief review of the history of Australian safe harbour legislation and recent ISP-related case laws in the US shows the best way to provide legal certainty for online intermediaries would be to introduce “fair use” exceptions alone. More safe harbour rules aren’t needed at this stage.

A move by the Greens to set up a Senate inquiry into the potential reform of Australia's surveillance laws appears to have opened a giant Pandora's Box of debate about the issue, with Australian law enforcement agencies using the process to demand massively increased electronic surveillance rights, including data retention of users' communications.

The Queensland Government has unveiled plans to deploy new technology that will allow Brisbane police officers to view live CCTV footage from cameras in public areas on their iPads or smartphones while working their beat, in a move being billed as helping to keep those of the city's residents 'who are doing the right thing' safe.

If you needed any further indication that we now live in the science fiction future long ago mapped out for us by visionary authors, then look no further. News arrived this week that an Australian digital currency company and Bitcoin mining concern, digitalBTC, has listed on the Australian Stock Exchange through a backdoor listing.

Just when you think you've seen it all in Australia's mediasphere -- all the crazy and technically illiterate pronouncements from radio shock jocks, all the denouncements of Labor's NBN policy from right-wing bloggers and so on -- something new appears to prove that still more can be dredged from the depths.

We can't help but suspect that the telco considers itself to have gotten off relatively scot-free from the debacle, paying an infringement notice of only $10,200 in relation to its contravention of an earlier direction on the issue by the Australian Communications and Media Authority.

Yesterday digital rights-focused political party the Pirate Party Australia met its campaign funding target of $10,000 entirely through crowdfunding on local platform Pozible, in preparation for the WA Senate election on 5 April.

It seems that no matter where you look, someone is trying to fix the Australian Internet television market. Attorney-General George Brandis, as his Labor predecessor Mark Dreyfus did before him, is trying to block Internet piracy. Quickflix and FetchTV are still trying to create viable competitors to Foxtel's pay TV operation. And Foxtel itself is obviously trying to make as much hay as possible while its sun still shines. Into this fraught situation comes Richard Branson's Virgin Group.

The nation's biggest telco Telstra has published an extremely brief four page "Transparency Report" detailing a small amount of information about its interactions with law enforcement agencies, including the fact that it responded to over 40,000 requests for information over the six months to the end of 2013 alone.

The Australian Labor Party's silence on the Australian Law Reform Commission's propsed reforms to the Copyright Act has been broken by Tim Watts, a first-time MP who told Parliament late last month that he supported the US-style "fair use" doctrine supported by the commission, which the Coalition has not yet indicated it will support.

I'd just like to be able to pop down to the shops quickly now and then for a packet of chips without some police system automatically scanning my face for matches with some massive crime database. Is that too much to ask?

The Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre (AUSTRAC) admitted in a Senate Estimates session in Canberra this week that it is literally tracking every conversion between Bitcoins and Australian dollars. Wow. Talk about privacy-invasive.

National pay TV operator Foxtel has revealed it will launch its upcoming Presto movies on demand service on 13 March, as well as temporarily cutting prices on the fees which subscribers using its IPTV service Play will be able to watch the latest season of the popular HBO TV series Game of Thrones.

Attorney-General George Brandis has threatened to introduce legislation to deal with the issue of Internet piracy in Australia unless the ISP and content industries can agree on a voluntary industry code to deal with the issue.

Everyone knows there’s a problem with copyright. Artists get paid very little for their work, and legitimate consumers aren’t getting a very fair deal either. Unfortunately, nobody agrees about how we should fix it.

A new poll conducted by Essential Media has shown that 80 percent of Australians disapprove of the Government being able to access Australians' phone and Internet records without a warrant, in research which is already being hailed as "vindication" for campaigns against government intrusion into private residents' telecommunications.

The parliamentary future of Greens Senator and Communications Spokesperson Scott Ludlam is once again in doubt, following a decision by the High Court today that will likely mean a fresh election should be held for the Western Australian Senate, following mistakes made during last year's Federal Election.

I'm sure you've been wondering (as many people have) just how Australia's premiere electronic surveillance agency Australian Signals Directorate was able to gain access to the telephone data of high-ranking Indonesian officials in that country's government. Well, wonder no more. According to The Guardian, the agency has a massive level of access to Indonesia's telco networks.

Attorney-General George Brandis today appeared to back a scheme proposed by a coalition of most of Australia's major ISPs which would see the issue of online copyright infringement handled through Australians being issued with warning notices after content holders provided evidence that they had breached their copyright online — and the door opened for ISPs to hand over user details to the content industry if the behaviour continued.

A cluster of Australia's most high-profile digital rights organisations, including Electronic Frontiers Australia, CHOICE and the Pirate Party have backed the Australian Law Reform Commission's strong call for so-called "Fair Use" provisions to be introduced into the Copyright Act.

The Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) has strongly recommended a new "fair use" provision for re-use of copyrighted works be introduced into the Copyright Act, as one of the key recommendations contained in an extremely wide-ranging review of the nation's copyright laws which was tabled this week in Federal parliament.

Greens Senator and Communications Spokesman Scott Ludlam has has accused Attorney-General George Brandis of delivering an "embarassing and borderline hysterical" and "infantile" display in Federal Parliament, due to the Liberal Senator's continued refusal to answer basic questions about the surveillance powers used by Australian intelligence agencies.

The Australian division of digital rights group the Pirate Party has taken fourth place in the Griffith by-election held in Brisbane over the weekend, in a result that placed the party ahead of other minor parties such as the Katter Australian Party and Family First.

Depending on which way you look at it, it's either been a great week for Foxtel, with the news breaking that it has completely locked up Australian access to popular US TV series Game of Thrones, or a bad week, in that many Australians appear to strongly disapprove of the company's actions in doing so. I examine the situation at length in an article for Delimiter 2.0 (paywalled), coming away with the conclusion that Foxtel is gradually gaining monopoly power over the video content distribution industry in Australia.

BitTorrent-based TV content distribution group EZTV stated overnight that it stood "ready" to help out cash-strapped Australians with unauthorised downloading of episodes of the popular TV series Game of Thrones, in the wake of the news that the next season of the show will be available in Australia only through subscriptions to pay TV provider Foxtel.

Want to watch HBO's Game of Thrones show in Australia without signing up to a pricey Foxtel subscription? Bad luck: As of this week you're out of legal options. Foxtel has reportedly signed a deal with HBO which will block the show from airing through any other medium -- at all -- apart from DVD release, in a move which appears set to drive more Australians to downloading the show via file-sharing protocols such as BitTorrent.

Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull appears to have completely changed his view on the revelations by Edward Snowden about US spying activities, telling the ABC yesterday that the NSA whistleblower had caused "enormous damage", despite having only six months ago described some of Snowden's revelations as having "very significant" implications.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has heavily criticised NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden during a visit to the United States.

The Australian divisions of the world's largest social networking companies have criticised the new Coalition administration's approach to dealing with the issue of children's safety on the Internet as "counterproductive", in a move which signals the start of opposition to ongoing attempts by successive Australian Governments to regulate the Internet.

The Federal Government has issued a detailed discussion paper canvassing various options through which it can deal with the issue of children's safety on the Internet, including the potential establishment of a children's e-safety commissioner, developing an effective complaints system to deal with offensive material on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter, and even the potential establishment of a new cyber-bullying offence.

In late September last year, national pay TV giant Foxtel announced a new online service dubbed ‘Presto’, which was to see consumers charged $24.99 per month to access “a regularly updating collection of great films”, all streamed through the Internet, as opposed to its existing pay TV platform. However, according to the Financial Review, the launch of the service has already been delayed.

The Pirate Party Australia has signalled it will contest the Griffith by-election for the seat of formr Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, in another sign that the party which has achieved electoral success in Europe on digital rights and civil liberties issues is increasingly serious about gaining a higher slice of the popular vote in Australia.

The Attorney-General's Department has stated that it believes the Government has an obligation to publish by the end of February the full report which the Australian Law Reform Commission has painstakingly generated over the past several years into whether the Copyright Act is adequate to handle the new digital environment.

Following several unsuccessful attempts, the Greens have successfully moved a motion in the Senate to establish a formal inquiry into Internet surveillance, through a review that will take place into the controversial Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Act.

Australia's Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security has stated they have no plans to initiate a specific inquiry to examine allegations the Australian Signals Directorate had offered to share data about Australian citizens with foreign intelligence agencies, stating they believe current oversight of the ASD to be "sufficient".

The nation's largest telco Telstra has flatly rejected allegations that it is routinely logging all of its customers' web browsing data and email history on behalf of national security and intelligence agencies, stating that it does not "routinely" collect or store its customers' telecommunications data unless required to do so.

Both Labor and the Coalition have voted down a motion put by the Greens in the Senate which would have called on the Parliament to re-establish the Joint Standing Committee on Intelligence and Security, a key oversight mechanism of Australia's intelligence agencies which has lain dormant since the election.

Are you one of those Australians who lined up at midnight to buy some of the first next-generation video game consoles to go on sale? Have you spent some time exploring your new PlayStation 4 or Xbox One? Then you would be aware that when it comes to Australian support for their new consoles, both Sony and Microsoft appear to have screwed Australians pretty badly.

The Attorney-General's Department has rejected an appeal for a Freedom of Information request which would have seen the incoming ministerial briefing (known as the ‘Blue Book’) provided to new Attorney-General George Brandis, censoring the release of the entire document.

The Greens and Labor teamed up in the Senate yesterday to successfully move a motion which would force the Coalition Government to table the text of the controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement before Australia signs the treaty.

Global privacy organisation Privacy International has filed a formal complaint with Australia's Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security over a report that the Australian Signals Directorate had offered to hand over data on Australian citizens to foreign intelligence agencies.

The Australian Labor Party has given the first tentative sign that it may be open to working with the Greens on the terms of a wide-reaching parliamentary inquiry into electronic surveillance practices in Australia.

Federal Attorney-General George Brandis has reacted to the revelation of what a Queen's Counsel lawyer has stated are borderline illegal surveillance tactics by the Australian Signals Directorate by supporting the agency and accusing NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden of being an "American traitor".

Australia's peak electronic intelligence agency offered to share detailed information collected about ordinary Australian citizens with its major intelligence partners, the Guardian reported this morning, in moves that at least one high-profile lawyer says may have breached Australian law.

Delimiter has published a free file-serving mirror of PDF documents published under Freedom of Information laws by the Attorney-General's Department and relevant to the technology sector, in the wake of confirmation by the department that it has removed such documents from its website.

The Federal Attorney-General's Department has stated that neither it nor Attorney-General George Brandis has recently sent Australian telcos letters inviting them to reboot long-running talks between the telecommunications and content industries over Internet piracy, contradicting a report in The Australian newspaper.

In Australian intellectual property circles, there are few names which are more respected than that of Kimberlee Weatherall. That’s why we were personally thrilled to learn that Weatherall has recently published a mammoth blow by blow analysis of the enforcement provisions contained in the recently leaked draft of the Trans-Pacific Partnership IP chapter.

Despite a successful launch in other major first-world nations such as the UK, as well as throughout Latin America, US IPTV giant Netflix has constantly signalled over the past few years its lack of interest in launching its service in Australia. However, all that may be about to change.

If the foreign music and movie industries are worried about piracy, they can decide to invest in improving their product’s security – like any other business does. It is neither fair nor right they should ask any other industry to pay what should rightly be their own expense.

Regular readers of Delimiter will be aware that we’ve long had a beef with the ABC over the public broadcaster’s lack of an iView app for the popular (some would say dominant) Android platform. Well, the ABC looks set to finally rectify that issue, making several announcements relating to Android and the iView more platform generally.

Technology media outlet Delimiter today revealed it would establish a free file-serving mirror of PDF documents published under Freedom of Information laws by the Attorney-General's Department and relevant to the technology sector, in the wake of confirmation by the department that it has removed such documents from its website.

Representatives of the Federal Attorney-General's Department yesterday claimed the department had removed PDFs previously published on its website as part of its Freedom of Information disclosure log because they did not meet web "accessibility" guidelines and were hurting the website's overall accessibility rating.

Australia wants to foster innovation in a digital economy, but our copyright laws discourage businesses from investing in new technologies and make it harder for individuals to access the knowledge upon which innovation is based. Yesterday’s US decision in the Google Books case shows why US copyright law is much more supportive of innovation than ours.

Western Australians are likely to be forced to vote again for their Senate representatives in Federal Parliament, in a move which will once again place the seat of Greens Communications Spokesperson Scott Ludlam in doubt, as the Australian Electoral Commission last week confirmed it would seek a by election in the state.

Australian political parties and digital rights lobby groups today erupted in outrage after a Wikileaks leak of the intellectual property rights chapter of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement revealed Australians could be slugged with new draconian measures if caught infringing copyright online.

Online retailer Amazon this morning revealed it had formally launched an Australian version of its popular online bookstore, putting a formal face on a service which millions of Australians have already been accessing for years and further supporting Australian authors to sell their books online locally.

In another episode of the ongoing rollercoaster of a story that is Bitcoin, about 4,100 of them have been stolen from an online bitcoin wallet site What makes this particular story more interesting is the fact that the person behind the site is allegedly an 18 year old Australian going by the alias “TradeFortress” living in Hornsby, NSW.

On Reckoner, Anthony Agius catalogues how insurer QBE has recently launched a product in Australia that directly tracks everything you do with you car, and the rather obvious privacy challenges that are already evident.

The Attorney-General's Department has declined to release under Freedom of Information laws the incoming ministerial briefing (known as the 'Blue Book') provided to new Attorney-General George Brandis, censoring the release of the entire document in a decision which appears to run directly contrary to a similar decision by the Department of Communications.

Former Queensland Labor Premier Peter Beattie has published a strongly worded article stating that he is "ashamed" of Australia's record on Internet piracy, in the latest sign that the two major sides of politics may be in agreement about the need to tackle the issue through new legislation.

The Greens have called for the Federal Parliament to hold a wide-ranging inquiry into Australia's electronic surveillance efforts, as pressure grows on the nation's intelligence agencies to come clean on their covert activities in a manner similar to which is being seen internationally, and revelations by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden continue to create aftershocks in Australia.

Four members of the board of Electronic Frontiers Australia have resigned in protest against what they described in a letter published this morning as "inaccuracies and irregularities" in the governance and financial affairs of the digital rights lobby group.

An extensive survey conducted by respected analysis house Essential Research has found that a huge proportion of Australians would continue to pirate content such as TV shows and movies online, even if such content was made available everywhere globally at the same time for a low price.

Revelations about Australia’s alleged spy network in Asia and listening posts in our embassies across the Pacific might be diplomatically awkward. But it doesn’t mean intelligence agencies have “gone rogue”.

The new Coalition Federal Government has reportedly signalled plans to restart long-running talks between the telecommunications and content industries to deal with the issue of Internet piracy, despite the fact that a previous round of talks between the two sides under the previous Labor administration proved pointless.

According to a wide-ranging expose on Palantir Technologies published by Crikey, it has become clear that the firm is rapidly growing its operations down under.

Two documents released this week highlight divergent views among the community and politicians.

Documents obtained by the ABC under Freedom of Information laws have shown that then-Labor Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus received a secret briefing on the US National Security Agency's controversial PRISM surveillance program several months before the program was outed by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Remember how international media outlets The Guardian, The New York Times and ProPublica revealed last week that the US National Security Agency had developed the ability to break some commonly used forms of Internet encryption? Scary, huh? Well, what you may not have realised is that Australia’s own intelligence agencies reportedly have access to the technology.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, new revelations coming out of US whistleblower Edwards Snowden have revealed that the Australian Signals Directorate habitually taps undersea fibre-optic cables from Australia.

In this election campaign the major parties are carefully dancing round an elephant in the ballroom. The elephant is big and a bit frightening. Its name is privacy policy.

With just over two weeks to go in the campaign, Julian Assange’s WikiLeaks Party has experienced some unsettling events that suggest it may be unravelling.

WikiLeaks Senate candidate Leslie Cannold quits the party, alleging impropriety in its internal processes.

National broadband player iiNet today revealed it had not implemented the Federal Government’s limited mandatory ISP filtering scheme based on a list of offensive sites supplied by Interpol and had no immediate plans to do so, in a move which appears to represent a total reversal of the ISP's position on the matter and defiance of the Australian Federal Police's wishes.

Federal Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus has flatly refused to take part in a live election interview on key technology issues in his portfolio, such as copyright reform, data retention, telecommunications surveillance and Internet piracy, stipulating instead that all questions on the issues must be submitted in writing.

We’ve had #stopthenotes, #suppositories, and #sexappeal to keep us amused, but since the election campaign period began there has been very limited reporting in the mainstream media (MSM) of the electoral relevance of the digital rights issues faced by Australian citizens.

Australia's Federal Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus has made an extraordinary public statement that former CIA and NSA operative Edward Snowden and accused WikiLeaks collaborator Bradley Manning are not technically "whistleblowers", claiming that the information they had released publicly related to no wrongdoing by government agencies.

Chinese device manufacturer Huawei severely criticises the ABC for not developing an Android version of its popular iView iOS app.

In its arguments against the NBN, it would seem News Corp Australia’s campaign is less than wholly transparent in representing its own interests.

XKeyscore is an online surveillance tool run by America’s National Security Agency (NSA) that allows analysts to search contents of chats, emails and browsing histories without warrants. Australian experts respond in this article to the issue.

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