Oakland Passes Surveillance Transparency on MayDay


Closing the circle begun many years ago, the City of Oakland ended the Domain Awareness Center saga, quietly and on consent, by passing the strongest community control of surveillance ordinance in the nation.

Beaten on the calender by Santa Clara County in June of 2016, and then Berkeley and Davis in April of 2018, Oakland rose up to defeat one of the largest Homeland Security projects ever foisted on an American city and sparked a national conversation about whether the people get any say in how they are watched.

The City is finally enacting what they agreed to in concept three years ago at three in the morning: community control of surveillance.

From the canary in the Homeland Security coalmine to national leaders in transparency, disclosure, oversight and accountability.

(with a little help from the people).

Happy Mayday!


Ars Technica

East Bay Times




KQED Forum Digs Deep on Palantir


KQED Forum devoted a lengthy segment to Palantir, the software engineer of the surveillance state, following a lengthy Bloomberg report on the company. Oakland (and Oakland Privacy’s) work gets a little mention partway through along with some themes we’ve encouraged including the importance of watching those who watch us and the parallels between the Palantir’s of the 21st century and IBM and the Hollerith punch cards in the 20th century.


KQED Forum: A Deeper Look Into Palantir Technologies

Bloomberg: Palantir Knows Everything About You


Alameda Sanctuary City Ordinance Cuts ICE Data Pipes


On April 17, the City Council of Alameda voted 4-1 to have staff prepare a Sanctuary City ordinance to prevent city business and monies from going to ICE data brokers or participants in “extreme vetting”.

Sponsored by Vice-Mayor Malia Vella, the SCCIO was developed by a 19-organization coalition working under the name #DeportICE, and anchored by Oakland Privacy. The coalition’s work focuses on strengthening immigrant protections in the Bay Area’s sanctuary cities to remove loopholes and assist local governments with sanctuary policies from indirectly subsidizing and or cooperating with the Trump administration’s aggressive civil enforcement ramp-up.

Read more at www.deportice.org 


Net Neutrality Now, California


Oakland Privacy joined 40 other national and CA-based organizations in support of SB 822, the second CA state Net Neutrality bill. SB 822 is a comprehensive net neutrality reform that not only reinstates (in California) the protections in the FCC’s Open Internet Order, but amplifies them by including practices like zero-rating which waives data cap limits for certain sites and gatekeeps consumers w/o unlimited data to content chosen by their mobile and Internet providers.

SB 822 enforces statewide Net Neutrality by forbidding state contracts, cable franchises or broadband expansion funding to non-neutral Internet providers.

Another statewide Net Neutrality bill, SB 460, passed the Ca State Senate in February.


Urban Shield As We Know It Ends After 2018


At today’s Alameda County Board of Supervisors meeting, 5+ hours of discussion ended with a decision that Urban Shield as currently constituted would end after the 2018 war games and exposition. The 4-1 vote, with Supervisor Scott Haggerty more or less voting no, left open-ended what Alameda County’s regional disaster preparedness activities would be in future years, but the Supervisors were decisive that it would not be the Urban Shield event, which began in 2007.

A series of embarrasing revelations from the presence of the Oath Keepers extremist group in an allied community fair, the use of racist target dummies, the presence of HSI/ICE, and slush fund donations from the likes of Blackwater seems to have finally pushed the Supervisors over the edge, in a lengthy meeting preceded by a 200 person rally and with dozens of public comments.

East Bay Express coverage.

Black Agenda Report coverage

SF Gate coverage


On The Corner Of 2nd And 4th


by Chris Jasinski

I’d like to tell you that my heart broke when I heard about the Parkland shooting in February. But how many times can the heart break? Considering how frequently mass shootings occur in the US, it’s hard to not feel increasingly desensitized: desensitized to the death tolls, to the vigils, to the platitudes offered by politicians and to the change that never comes.

Though, as an amalgamation of negligence defines this tragedy, a small group of young people in Florida have begun to shout, to walk out, and to organize themselves in an attempt to change the course of this exhausted, uniquely American narrative.