Apple provided FBI with data on Sci-Hub founder

“A woman who has in the past been described as “the spiritual successor to Aaron Swartz” – who was a US web pioneer hounded to suicide by US prosecutors for making academic research available to everyone – has now learned the FBI is investigating her….

Elbakyan included a screenshot of the conveniently “no-reply” email in her tweet, where Apple informed her that it in February 2019 received a request from the FBI for data pertaining to her account, and that the nature of the request was such that it only allowed the tech giant to notify the user with delay.

Apple also told Elbakyan that the requested data had been handed over, and washed its hands off the whole thing by advising the programmer that if she wanted to know more about the request and what kind of information the FBI wanted – she should talk to the FBI….”

 

Big Idea Famine

“Which successful company has benefited the most from basic science and technology, yet given the least back to it? The answer: Apple. It is so extreme, that the runners-up are not even close. Apple funds internal research galore, then locks it up, reportedly refusing to allow its own scientists to attend public and open research conferences. It does make some software open (sort of), but funds no accessible research to speak of that would help further the kind of basic computer science upon which others can build. You might think that such behavior is natural; how could Apple—or any company for that matter—be competitive otherwise? And yet there is a long history of precompetitive basic science that, for example, came from the likes of Bell Labs (like semi-conductors), later IBM, and more recently Microsoft. You cannot keep skimming the cream off the top, without doing some basic, open research that is widely shared. Open and shared are the key words….”