The FBI has arrested a California man connected to former Congresswoman Katie Hill for taking down the websites of two of her campaign opponents in 2018.
Arthur Dam was arrested Friday on charges of hacking into the websites of two Democrats who opposed Hill in the 2018 Democratic Primary for California’s 25th District. According to a criminal complaint regarding the arrest, Dam orchestrated a cyber attack on websites of two of Hill’s primary opponents, Jess Phoenix and Bryan Caforio. Both of their websites were disabled during a crucial moment of the primary, which Hill went on to win.
It was suspected during the primary that Hill was connected to the campaign website hacks, considering her own website was still intact. Dam’s connections to the former member of Congress- who was forced to resign from office in 2019 in light of a sex scandal surrounding her intimate affairs with a congressional staffer- appear to make that a likely possibility.
Dam is married to Hill’s former campaign fundraiser and district director in Congress, Kelsey O’Hara. In campaign finance records, Hill lists an in-kind campaign contribution for “graphic design and website security consultation.”
Some coincidences are merely just that. But it’s extremely hard to ignore Kate Hill’s “website security consultant” getting arrested for hacking into the campaign websites of her congressional primary opponents.
Hill has reinvented herself after her resignation from Congress as a result of the sex scandal, seemingly viewing herself as a victim.
Sexual involvement with subordinate employees is arguably a severe lapse of ethical judgement in any workplace. Perhaps one could forgive such poor decision-making, even if it’s made by a Member of Congress obligated to a higher standard.
But the lasting hacking arrest of Hill’s campaign security consultant make it likely that the former Democrat Congresswoman has more to answer for her own personal lapses in judgement.
YOUR NEW MASTER: Twitter’s Head of Conversational Safety, a “Young, Queer Asian-American Businesswoman,” is “Rethinking” the Concept of User Safety
Do you trust someone like her to make Twitter “a safer place”?
The media company Protocol, a sister site of Politico, recently published an article about Twitter’s new “head of product for conversational safety,” Christine Su. It claims that Su, a “young, queer Asian-American businesswoman,” is revolutionizing what “user safety” on social media means.
Twitter hired Su around six months ago to be in charge of “what might be the most difficult task on Twitter,” despite having no apparent experience in politics, programming, and media relations. But Twitter seems to like her for her “creative” and “somewhat radical new ideas” about user safety.
“As a queer woman of color who is an Asian American in tech in rural America, that experience is a very intersectional one. I’ve had plenty of experiences moving through spaces where I wanted more safety,” Su said.
Protocol writes that Su’s vision incorporates “transformative and procedural justice.” Transformative justice ostensibly refers to a non-retributive form of repairing harm done to someone and preventing it from happening again; procedural justice to enacting a set of rules that “make harm rarer in the first place.”
This all sounds nice and dandy—but beware. So-called transformative and procedural justice will not benefit you, but will crush you. Anything that’s perceived as “harmful” against “women and people from marginalized groups” can and will be used to censor you. Christine Su may reassuringly claim that “the point is not to make the entire world a safe space,” but she’s open about the fact that she will help give the Coalition of the Fringes more control over what people are allowed to do and say on Twitter.
Examples from the article:
- Creating an audio hangout feature called “Spaces,” which will allow users to determine who is allowed to participate, as well as who can speak and when. (Note that it’s being tested on “women and marginalized groups of people” first.)
- Potentially doubling down on functions that “encourage people to read content before reposting it.” (Which is exclusively done to censor or limit the reach of conservative and other right-wing content.)
- Building tools that “create private pathways for apologies, forgiveness and deescalation.” (The finer details are still a work in progress according to Su.)
- Defining what a “meaningful conversation” is. (Would people like Su think that anything right-wingers say or believe belongs in a “meaningful conversation”? Let’s just say I wouldn’t bet money on it…)
You know full well that a company like Facebook would shortly follow suit. After all, it’s not just Twitter that Su is “revolutionizing,” but the concept of social media itself. Figure out where all this is heading.
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