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Constitution

When can you video the police?

Sixty-four percent of adults in the United States own smartphones, according to the Pew Research Center. Four years ago, about half that number did.

Many depend on their smartphones for online access, whether they’re applying for jobs, checking their bank accounts, paying bills, following breaking news events or sharing photos and videos. Never has it been this fast and easy to take a photo or video and share it online for everyone to see.

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Police fighting to keep cellphone trackers secret

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The Chicago Police Department is fighting to keep a lid on how, when and where officers have used covert cellphone tracking systems — with an outside law firm billing the city more than $120,000 to battle a lawsuit that seeks those secret details.

Since 2005, the department has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on cell-site simulators manufactured by the Harris Corp. in Melbourne, Florida, records show. The devices — with names like StingRay and KingFish — capture cellphone signals.

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Wikipedia to file lawsuit challenging mass surveillance by NSA

The lawsuit alleges that the NSA’s mass surveillance of internet traffic, often called “upstream” surveillance, violates the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which protects freedom of speech and association, and the Fourth Amendment, which protects against unreasonable search and seizure.

The NSA’s upstream surveillance program captures communications with “non-U.S. persons” in order to acquire foreign intelligence information.

“This kind of dragnet surveillance constitutes a massive invasion of privacy, and it undermines the freedoms of expression and inquiry as well,” ACLU Staff Attorney Patrick Toomey said in a statement.

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McDonald’s sues to block Seattle’s minimum wage

Last summer, the City of Seattle passed a law that will raise the city’s minimum wage to $15 per hour. But in a bizarre twist, Ronald McDonald and friends are suing the city. On March 10, they’ll be in a federal courtroom, complaining that the new minimum wage violates a constitutional provision that was written to protect newly-freed slaves after the Civil War.

Most people can’t survive on Washington’s current statewide minimum wage of $9.47, let alone the federal minimum wage of $7.25. Even if the sophisticated crew-scheduling software let you work 40 hours a week at $9.47 for every single week of the year, you wouldn’t clear $20,000. In the end, 52 percent of fast food workers end up on public assistance. You’ll find similar stories for other minimum wage workers, such as hotel maids and nursing home assistants.

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