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|09-11-2003, 04:16 AM||#1|
Join Date: Jun 2001
Protest Planned at World Launch of RFID Spy Chip Network
CASPIAN will demonstrate during Gillette "Reasons to Believe" speech
September 10, 2003
Consumers will protest the "EPC Symposium" at Chicago's McCormick Place
Convention Center Tuesday, September 16 at 10 AM. The Symposium is
scheduled to showcase the world launch of the Electronic Product Code
The EPC network, nicknamed by proponents "The Internet of Things," was
designed to connect all items on the planet to computer databases via
miniature RFID "spy chips." The stated purpose of the network is to tag
and track every manufactured item with a unique EPC identification
Corporations like Gillette, Procter & Gamble and Unilever plan to embed
EPC-compliant RFID chips in consumer products and product packaging. "We
have serious privacy and civil liberties concerns about this technology.
Corporations and governments could use it to register products to
individuals and secretly track them after purchase," says Katherine
Albrecht, Founder and Director of CASPIAN.
"Businesses have dismissed consumer concerns by characterizing RFID as
an 'improved bar code,' but RFID is very different," says Albrecht.
"These RFID spy chips can be read silently from a distance, right
through your clothes, wallet, backpack or purse by anyone with the right
reader device. For example, the chips can be secretly embedded in credit
cards or sewn into the seams of pants where they can be used to observe
people's movements without their knowledge or consent."
The 10 AM protest time was chosen to coincide with a speech by Gillette
Vice President Dick Cantwell entitled, "Reasons to Believe." "Protesting
during Mr. Cantwell's speech is particularly appropriate," says
Albrecht. "Gillette has never answered consumers' questions regarding
its use of RFID, and we find the use of religious terminology in the
title of his speech disturbing."
Gillette is the target of a worldwide boycott for its involvement with
RFID-enabled "smart shelves" that have been used by the Tesco retail
chain in England to secretly photograph consumers.
CASPIAN has delayed announcing protest details due to restrictions
placed on First Amendment activities by McCormick Place. ACLU attorney
Adam Schwartz, who is representing CASPIAN in this matter, has issued a
letter to McCormick Place authorities requesting that protestors be
allowed to express themselves inside the convention center, close to the
EPC Symposium event.
"We are grateful for the ACLU's help," says CASPIAN spokeswoman Liz
McIntyre. "With their assistance, we are now confident that we will be
able to exercise our free speech rights in accordance with the law."
In addition to the live protest in Chicago, consumers from around the
world will stage their own local protests of the EPC launch. For
example, consumers in England plan to protest on Monday, September 15 at
a Tesco supermarket in Sandhurst, Surrey. Details of that protest are
available at http://www.notags.co.uk.
Consumers Against Supermarket Privacy Invasion and Numbering (CASPIAN)
is a grass-roots consumer group fighting retail surveillance schemes
since 1999. With members in all 50 U.S. states and more than 15 nations
around the globe, CASPIAN seeks to educate consumers about marketing
strategies that invade their privacy and to encourage privacy-conscious
shopping habits across the retail spectrum.
For more information about the protest visit http://www.stopRFID.com.
Katherine Albrecht, CASPIAN Founder and Director: (877) 287-5854
Liz McIntyre, CASPIAN Communications: (877) 287-5854 or email@example.com
Mary Starrett, CASPIAN Media Associate: (602) 315-6193
“The Matrix is a system, Neo, and that system is our enemy. When you are inside, you look around, what do you see? Businessmen, teachers, lawyers, carpenters, the very minds we are trying to save. Until we do, these people are part of that system and that makes them our enemies. You have to understand that most of these people are not ready to be unplugged and many are so hopelessly dependent on the system, they’ll fight to protect it. “The Matrix is everywhere. It is all around us. Even in this very room. You can see it when you look out your window or when you turn on your television. You can feel it when you go to work, when you go to church, when you pay your taxes. It is the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from the truth.”
- Morpheus, in the movie, “The Matrix”