The Electronic Frontier Foundation has filed suit against a number of government agencies for refusing to disclose their policies for using social networking sites for investigations, data-collection, and surveillance.

The EFF is working with the Samuelson Law, Technology, and Public Policy Clinic at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law. The Samuelson Clinic made more than a dozen Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests on behalf of EFF to the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Justice, the Department of Homeland Security, and other agencies, asking for information about how the government collects and uses social media information. Several agencies did not respond, which led to the lawsuit.

Agencies named in the lawsuit include the Department of Defense, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Department of Justice, the Department of the Treasury, and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

Stories cited by the EFF in the lawsuit included law enforcement searches in social media sites for evidence of underage drinking, the release of court records, a man arrested for alerting protesters to FBI agencies via Twitter, and a person accused of bank fraud who posted information on Facebook about living it up in Mexico.

If the government is scanning social media for evidence of illegal activity, I have no problem with that. If the government is scanning social media to identify dissenting opinion with the purpose of eventually suppressing the opinions, then I have a problem with it.

i think that is scary knowing that the government is scanning and getting information for social media. its scary because if the government can do that it means that they can easily do what they want when they want to you.

Personally, I think that as more people here about govt scanning of social media and e-mails there may be a move towards written letters and the USPS again, where widescale tampering/monitoring would require more human resources than electronic ones. A possible return to penmenship classes in our schools?

The issue is that there is already so much surveillance going on - both from the private and public sectors - that the main issue is data integration and dissemination. Look - Google is a main data depot.
To your point - Marketing Rob - if we go back to penmanship - it will hurt lots of people's eyes since I dont think younger generations have good handwriting.