Saturday, May 27, 2017

British Telecom: We lose our Internet connection for the second time in two days, having not previously been disconnected from the Internet since our contract with BT commenced on 28 May 2014 (WITH UPDATE 17/6/2017 RE: 18th Internet cut since 26 May 2017)

Re: Blocks on public access to our Church and State website since 26 July 2016

From my earlier blog post's Update 17 June (8.50am):

"I have updated my blog post of 16 January with last night's 499th block on public access to our Church and State website since 26 July 2016. The blog post also not only reveals a record-breaking 52 such blocks in one week at the end of April (an unprecedented escalation that kicked off with our focus on Denmark's cartoon crisis; 94 blocks last month), but it reveals the daily targeting to fluctuating degrees of category pages throughout the site which continues to this day."

An unprecedented ten blocks in one day on 7 May with our publication of Atheist Ireland republishes 25 blasphemous quotes in solidarity with Stephen Fry. 12 blocks last week; 15 blocks so far this week; four blocks yesterday; no blocks since midnight today (as of 17 June at 8.50am).

The War on Free Expression



We have a distinguished list of 121 Honorary Associates from around the world, including two Nobel Prize winners. Nonetheless (or perhaps as a result), we are now dealing not just with blocks on public access to our Church and State website and the daily targeting to fluctuating degrees of category pages throughout the site, but Internet cuts as well. British Telecom is one of the world's leading communications services companies. We pay BT £65.53 per month (£786.36 per year) for BT Infinity fibre optic broadband. We have had difficulties of late in our dealings with BT over intermittent TV reception through our BT YouView box, but these difficulties have had absolutely nothing to do with our internet connection which has remained connected since our contract with BT commenced on 28 May 2014: that is, until yesterday. I have filed these first two internet cuts since May 2014 in a folder I have created called "BT Internet Cuts", with the date and time part of the graphic for each cut:

1st Internet cut: 26 May 2017
2nd Internet cut: 27 May 2017 (graphic above)



UPDATE 17 June (8.22am): Presented at the end of this update is last night's 18th recorded internet cut since 26 May. On 2 June BT Executive Level Complaints (Consumer) emailed Declan the content of an engineer's report from his visit to our home on 24 May to investigate the intermittent TV reception we had been getting through our BT YouView box. See my blog post of 1 June, BT Executive Level Complaints (Consumer): Declan complains to BT Chairman Sir Michael Rake to no avail? (WITH TREBLE UPDATE - Day 12 2/6/2017). Declan copied Sir Michael Rake into this reply requesting BT's deadlock letter for the Telecommunications Ombudsman to investigate whether the home wiring relating to our TV aerial socket could have possibly been the problem (the fault was restricted to Freeview channels that are not dependent on a connection to the internet):

For the attention of Sir Michael Rake, Chairman, British Telecom

Miranda Bracey
Executive Level Complaints (Consumer)
British Telecom

Address removed for email


2 June 2017

Dear Ms Bracey,

Thank you for your email. I do not accept that the intermittent TV reception I had been experiencing of late through my BT YouView box may have been the result of my home wiring (hereinafter referred to as the "Complaint"). I therefore hereby request a letter of deadlock from BT that provides me with the company's full and final position on my Complaint and refers me to the ombudsman service.

Yours sincerely,

Declan Heavey

UPDATE 17 June (continued): Yesterday BT Executive Level Complaints conceded in a deadlock letter that our home wiring was not in any way causing problems with our BTTV service. It is however noteworthy that the internet cuts we had been experiencing increased dramatically after another BT engineer attended on 12 June; and this despite the fact that he not only provided us with a brand new phone socket but that he also could not find a problem with our line. Our concern since the second internet cut on 27 May has been whether we will have the internet to increase our connections across northern Europe, particularly in Denmark, Norway and the Netherlands. Last night we had a record-equalling four internet cuts in one night. The night before that, we had to suspend work on our Church and State website after exactly the same treatment. So I am concentrating my research on Denmark.

Denmark Ditches Blasphemy Laws

INTERNET CUTS

1st 26 May 2017, 1.39pm
2nd 27 May 2017, 12.32pm
3rd 3 June 2017, 8.45pm
4th 4 June 2017, 11.49am
5th 4 June 2017, 1.32pm
6th 9 June 2017, 10.50pm
7th 13 June 2017, 9.48am
8th 13 June 2017, 12.48pm
9th 15 June 2017, 6.50am
10th 15 June 2017, 8.01pm
11th 15 June 2017, 9.48pm
12th 15 June 2017, 10.18pm
13th 15 June 2017, 11.02pm
14th 16 June 2017, 12.22am
15th 16 June 2017, 7.22pm
16th 16 June 2017, 8.02pm
17th 16 June 2017, 10.49pm
18th 16 June 2017, 11.32pm


12 out of 18 internet cuts within five days of the engineer's visit on 12 June; 5 cuts the day before yesterday; five cuts yesterday; no cuts since midnight today (as of 17 June at 8.22am).

Click to enlarge

Re: Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ)

Paragraph 12 of Declan's updated complaint to the United Nations under Article 19 (freedom of expression) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

12. It is important to underscore that the discriminatory surveillance suffered by the Applicant and his wife is not an isolated event. Rather, it is emblematic of a larger pattern of surveillance by law enforcement officials in the UK that has been well-documented by international and domestic human rights bodies. For example, GCHQ's Joint Threat Research Intelligence Group (JTRIG) specialises in the "4 D's": deny, disrupt, degrade, deceive. It has been branded by the press as the spy agency's "deception unit". Though its existence was secret until 2014, JTRIG has developed a distinctive profile in the public understanding, after documents from NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden revealed that the unit had engaged in "dirty tricks" like deploying sexual "honey traps" designed to discredit targets, launching denial-of-service attacks to shut down Internet chat rooms, pushing veiled propaganda onto social networks and generally warping discourse online. Previous reporting on GCHQ established its focus on what it regards as political radicalism. Beyond JTRIG's targeting of Anonymous, other parts of GCHQ targeted political activists and groups deemed to be "radical", even monitoring human rights NGOs. The President of the London-based Privacy International, Simon Davies, asks: "If spying on human rights NGOs isn't off limits for GCHQ, then what is?"

Citizenfour Official Trailer 1 (2014) - Edward Snowden Documentary HD



JOIN THE CONVERSATION #CITIZENFOUR

From a fascinating excerpt from Glenn Greenwald's book "No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State":

All of the evidence highlights the implicit bargain that is offered to citizens: pose no challenge and you have nothing to worry about. Mind your own business, and support or at least tolerate what we do, and you'll be fine. Put differently, you must refrain from provoking the authority that wields surveillance powers if you wish to be deemed free of wrongdoing.

'Let me recommend an important web site churchandstate.org.uk. Operating out of London this well-designed and exciting web site covers church-state, population, climate change and other issues. Check it out.' - Edd Doerr, President, Americans for Religious Liberty

From My Picks:

20 February: The Central London County Court: District Judge Avent dismisses Declan's claim against the Greater London Authority-commissioned St Mungo's that alleged the falsification and fabrication of data against us (WITH UPDATE 16/3/2017)

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