Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Opinion

July 10, 2013

House of Burgess: They might be taping

NSA, Jay-Z want your log-ins, calls.

(Continued)

Knowing the underworld’s disdain for such supervision, it’s curious that the most popular rapper in the world, Jay-Z, would be joining in on all the surveilling fun. On Thursday, the Brooklyn native’s 12th studio album, “Magna Carta ... Holy Grail,” was unleashed exclusively through a Samsung smartphone app. Prior to installation, the app asks permission to: “modify or delete the contents of your USB storage,” “prevent [the] phone from sleeping [and] retrieve running apps,” “approximate [your] network-based location [and] precise GPS location,” “[have] full network access” and “read [your] phone status and identity.”

“It’s an ugly piece of software,” reported Jon Pareles on Thursday in the New York Times. “When installed, it demanded a working log-in to Facebook or Twitter and permission to post on the account.”

I know times are tough in the music business, but using a hip-hop album release as a Trojan Horse for rampant records cataloging is beyond the pale. This is especially true for Shawn Carter, who has made a career detailing his past criminal exploits. It’s hard to imagine the Jay-Z of 20 years ago signing off on this.

As for Snowden, of this writing, he remains in exile in a Moscow airport. Back home, the United States has charged him with theft of government property, unauthorized communication of national defense information and willful communication of classified intelligence to an unauthorized person. Venezuela and Bolivia have offered Snowden asylum. Yet, he is unable to leave Russia.

Meanwhile, Jay-Z insists on your phone’s approximate location. (Who is the real gangster here, anyway?) But, like I said, don’t fret. You can fight back. The advantage you have is discretion.

Never write any secrets down. Meet face-to-face whenever possible. And, really, so what if Jay-Z, the NSA or anyone else wants to look over your shoulder? “If they’re gonna watch me,” said Nicky Santoro (Joe Pesci) in one of my favorite movies, “Casino,” “I’m gonna watch ’em right back.”

Rob Burgess, Tribune night editor, may be reached by calling 765-454-8577, via email at rob.burgess@kokomotribune.com or on Twitter at twitter.com/robaburg.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • ANDREA NEAL: Fleeting canal era had lasting impact on state Editor’s note: This is one in a series of essays leading up to the celebration of the Indiana Bicentennial in December 2016. In 1825, the Erie Canal was completed to great fanfare. Cannon fire, parades, balls and speeches celebrated the speed and ski

    July 30, 2014

  • Schools need kids' parents For school-age children in southern Miami County — and their parents — this is a seminal week. Classes start at Maconaquah schools on Friday.School starts for the rest of the Kokomo area next week.Before your children head back to school, ensure they

    July 29, 2014

  • TOM LoBIANCO: Pence, Bayh crowd field with questions In the 2016 political landscape, a pair of the state's political big dogs -- Republican Gov. Mike Pence and former Democratic U.S. Sen. Evan Bayh -- have potential candidates holding their breath and waiting on them. Until Pence says otherwise, he's

    July 29, 2014

  • LETTERS: No excuse letting trimmings rot at curb No excuse for letting trimmings rot at curbWe live in a recently annexed, east-side subdivision — a nice, clean, well-kept subdivision where almost all homeowners take pride in and maintain their homes and lawns.Before the annexation, we paid for our

    July 29, 2014

  • JEFFREY McCALL: All things Hillary are not news, just distractions This column has nothing to do with who should or will win the presidential election in 2016. It has nothing to do with partisan politics of any flavor. This column does, however, assess how television is oversaturating the "news" agenda with countles

    July 29, 2014

  • BRIAN HOWEY: World is rising up to meet Putin's thuggery Any illusions I had about the progressive nature of Vladimir Putin’s Russian regime quickly dissipated when I returned to my Moscow Grand Marriott room in August 2007. Upon opening the door, I was greeted with the spectacle of my papers and note pads

    July 28, 2014

  • LETTERS: Parents taking fun out of youth sports Parents taking fun out of youth sports I enjoyed reading the article, "Nation's youth sports leagues on troubling decline," by Bill Stanczykiewicz, CEO of the Indiana Youth Institute, and the last paragraph, a quote by Dr. Bill Dexter, president of t

    July 28, 2014

  • DICK WOLFSIE: A trip to end all trips My wife is planning a very exciting vacation to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary. This was a big surprise to me. Not the vacation part, but the 35 years. I thought it was 34. Right now she is on the back porch, the patio table stacked high with

    July 28, 2014

  • WEEKLY WRAP: Legal marriages should be honored Legal marriages should be honoredAn eager and probably nervous couple stands before a minister or a judge or a county clerk and exchanges vows, accepting the legal, moral and ethical obligations of a marriage.The couple has properly obtained a marria

    July 28, 2014

  • Right-to-work unnecessary It has been a crime for Indiana employers to enter into labor contracts that require workers to pay union dues since Feb. 1, 2012 — the day then-Gov. Mitch Daniels signed legislation making the Hoosier State a “right-to-work” state.Whether Indiana ke

    July 27, 2014

Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries
Poll