Lance Brown is the creator of Stop Carnivore and President and Founder of Future Solutions, which was founded in 1996 with the goal of pursuing freedom-minded solutions to tomorrow's problems.
Mr. Brown is also: President and CEO of PeoplesForum.com; CIO/Technology Supervisor of Dispute Solvers/Rent-a-Court, an online dispute resolution firm; Candidate for President of the U.S. in 2008. Already a veteran political activist at age 27, Mr. Brown plans a life of dedicated service to the causes of freedom.
How much time did it take you to open StopCarnivore.org?
I bought the domain name on July 17th, and had it hosted by that night. It took about 3 or 4 days to put the site together enough to be presentable. I was trying to launch it in time for last Monday's Congressional Hearings, and I did that. The first big traffic day was Monday the 21st. I have been updating and adding to the site daily since then.
The main focus of the site is Carnivore. What is the main problem with this system?
At an academic/political level, the biggest problem is that it blatantly violates the 4th Amendment to our Constitution. That amendment specifically requires searches of only a very limited and targeted scope, and Carnivore is a sweeping violation of it.
On an "average person" level, Carnivore is wrong because it gives far too much power and control to a very dangerous agency...one which has shown its disrespect for civil and human rights, not to mention privacy, on numerous occasions. Few Americans trust the FBI, and rightly so. Carnivore gives them, and through them, any Government Agency, the potential to control, limit, and interfere with electronic communications on a mass level.
And for those with full faith in Government, Carnivore is still a bad idea. Its super-invasive nature will drive criminals, and large numbers of innocent people to use encryption in greater and greater numbers. Those companies and citizens who fear for their privacy will simply relocate, digitally, to a place such as HavenCo.
Is Carnivore a next step of the ever-spoken-about Echelon network?
As I understand it (and I am not fully educated on Echelon), any talk about the specifics of Echelon are speculation at best. I see, and I think that the more cautious and/or paranoid of us see, that Carnivore seems eerily like a physical manifestation of Big Brother - the feared "evil twin" of Governement. Why else would a tool be developed which can scan all communications, unless that was its intended use?
The bottom line is that ISPs were supplying the FBI with this information before Carnivore. It's unneeded - which makes me wonder why it's here.
StopCarnivore.org has been featured on (among others) Free-Market.net's Freedom Home Page of The Week, Freedom Action of The Week and USA Today. How much exposure did those features give to the site?
It's hard to tell exactly how the word is getting around. I didn't get a single visitor from the USA Today column online, but I can't say what happened with all the readers of the paper edition. And the Free-Market.net awards are very new. they are just starting to draw people in. Free-Market.net is a very large network, and I was very proud to get their double honor. They reach a lot of important people in the freedom movement. Word is spreading more each day: by e-mail, through links, and more and more from the search engines.