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TWAT attack on the DAC
by Technophobic Women's Action Team
Wednesday Mar 5th, 2014 6:55 PM
In a bizarre and unexplainable turn of events early Wednesday morning, geysers of pink paint accompanied by hushed giggles erupted at two separate locations in Oakland. Tragically, three traffic cameras were rendered inoperational by the petrochemical gunk.
When we see the site of the new Domain Awareness Center - a public-sponsored, privately run entity that aims to integrate all surveillance footage in Oakland - we see the machinery of gentrification. Gentrification is not an accident that happens because single moms, queers, and punks rent where they can afford. It is a deliberate process engineered by business interests and city policies. DAC and the gentrification process are both based on control of public space that threatens to destroy the beautiful, vital, and often messy Oakland that we know and love. The first targets and the other squeezes out people of color, the poor, the marginalized, and the subversive.

We applaud all the organizing that has taken place against the DAC. The short and powerful speeches of Muslims, career activists, people of color, teachers, and just plain fed-up old people to city council were an inspiration to all who attended.

Unfortunately, we didn't win in any sense at the city council meeting on March 4th. Funding has been approved for the spycenter. Although there was some posturing that the center will only affect the port, once the DAC is built and funded it can be used for data from pretty much anywhere, and Quan has indicated that she will seek to add more systems to the DAC “one at a time” in the future.

Honestly, victory wasn't even theoretically on the table, as “Phase One” of the DAC has already been approved, and phase one includes the integration of city traffic cameras.
There is now no legal avenue to even pretend to fight the capture, aggregation, and analysis of our images and personal information.

Is all lost? Are the wingnuts right? Should we start saving up for some land in Idaho and build underground tunnels or else submit to the encroaching fascist state?

Well, my dears, We believe that there is still hope yet. The government of our fair city and it's police department have proven themselves to be rather inept, no matter what toys they are given by the feds.

There are only forty or so of these traffic cameras. The city of Oakland has a limited budget allocated for this project. We can nullify the DAC.

We invite you to join us on a grand adventure. Get together with one, two, or three of your closest friends. Not the ones who posture and brag. Not the ones you necessarily peg as the most “revolutionary” or the most “experienced.” Certainly not the ones who like to vomit up books and beat you over the head with them.

Those who listen, who you laugh with, the person to whom you can show up at midnight bawling and count on to make you some tea. Starting now, get together and scheme with those solid, thoughtful friends. Make crazy drunken plans. Scout out your targets. Decide your means. Do a dry run. Then, starting the 1st, we'll make the whole month of April a time of tomfoolery. We will make the DAC irrelevant.

Stay calm, be quick, and don't get caught,
love, T.W.A.T.
Technophobic Women's Action Team
§Look ma, No lense!
by Technophobic Women's Action Team Wednesday Mar 5th, 2014 6:55 PM
by Technophobic Women's Action Team Wednesday Mar 5th, 2014 6:55 PM

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Friday Mar 7th, 2014 11:39 PM
By Cristina Rendon

OAKLAND, Calif. —

A public display of defiance on red light traffic cameras in the city is in response to a plan to build a surveillance center at the Port of Oakland.

A group called the Technophobic Women’s Action Team took reportedly took responsibility on for vandalizing three sets of red light cameras in West Oakland with pink paint. The attacks came hours after the Oakland City Council voted Wednesday to move forward with a controversial project called the Domain Awareness Center.

The DAC will be housed at the Port of Oakland and only oversee surveillance cameras there in an effort to improve security.

The cameras vandalized with pink paint were at Market and 36th Street and Northgate and 27th Street. Pink paint covered the lenses of the cameras in what the group called a “camover,” but the cameras were quickly cleaned up the next day.

Even though the surveillance center known as the DAC would only oversee the port, privacy groups are concerned the city will tap into other data, like that from red light cameras, in the future.

“You never know when information is being gathered how it’s going to be used in the future and what the repercussions are of allowing certain things now versus 20 years from now,” said resident Brandy Ciaccio.

She and other residents were torn over the issue of privacy versus safety when it comes to surveillance cameras.

“If it helps deter crime then sure, I don’t have a problem with it,” said resident Mark Shaw. “But if it’s invading my privacy then I have an issue with it.”

Calls to the city of Oakland were not immediately returned on Friday. KTVU also tried searching for the group responsible for the vandalism, but was unable to contact them. In an online post, the group suggested they would continue targeting cameras in the future.
by E. H. Campbell
(campbell.ted [at] Thursday Apr 3rd, 2014 10:07 AM
The technology is so sophisticated now, they can photograph you from a squad car and automatically run your face through NCIC and drivers license photos and spit out your name and DOB, run your warrants etc. I know it was done to me this winter in Media, PA. Did three months for a crime I didn't commit on a case that was eventually dismissed for lack of evidence, but they took my picture and pos-ID me saying I fit the general description of a suspect in a strong armed robbery (5 felonies and two misdemeanors) and then claimed that they knew my name from a previous stop even though I was never stopped in Pennsylvania.

The only logical conclusion is that they got my name and DOB from a photo they took of me in a public place while I was walking down US Hwy 1, did a face recognition computer trip on it, and swore out a warrant. A month later I was stopped in North Carolina and was told I was ten seventy-five (a wanted fugitive) in Pennsylvania. I was extradited to the Delaware County Prison in Thornton, PA (George W. Hill Correctional Center, a private jail run by the Community Education Centers)

Blew my fuckin' mind. But at least I'm out. The only thing I could say to the arresting officer in N.C. was: Thank God it's not murder."
by Carly
(carlyburns13 [at] Thursday Nov 6th, 2014 11:39 AM
Hey, I'm writing a journalism piece and I would love to get some comments or talk to y'all about your work. Please get back to me if you have some time (won't take too much time!) to talk.