Apart from an open mind, there are several things which you can bring along to the Convention on Modern Liberty - Bloggers Summit on Saturday. The list of speakers is interesting enough, but the real benefit of such events is the chance to meet and interact with like minded people, face to face, and to to establish a foundation of trust in future online communications.
"You can't save the world via e-mail."
The organisers of the event, quite reasonably, hope that it will spark off further political campaigning and pressure to help to change the counterproductive repressive policies of the current Labour Government.
It seems that even formerly passive middle class people are now expected to "cause trouble" according to "Superintendent David Hartshorn, who heads the Metropolitan police's public order branch" quoted in The Guardian: Britain faces summer of rage - police - Middle-class anger at economic crisis could erupt into violence on streets
What is to stop the new Confidential Intelligence Unit (CIU) of the National Public Order Intelligence Unit (NPOIU) , set up by the increasingly unaccountable and politicised Association of Chief Police Officers, ( Secret police unit set up to spy on British 'domestic extremists' according to the Daily Mail) from snooping on the Convention on Modern Liberty attendees and speakers and organisers ?
It is always easier for the secret police to expand their bureaucratic empires, by snooping on or harassing peaceful middle class protestors and political activists . Real extremists are much harder to infiltrate, and they pose less of a political threat to the apparatchiki currently in positions of power and influence.
What can attendees of the Convention on Modern Liberty do to resist this ?
It is all very well for Spy Blog to point bloggers and others at some practical advice online, to help you and your contacts resist some of the political or commercial or bureaucratic snooping and dirty tricks, which those of you brave enough to have signed up to attend the Convention on Modern Liberty, might face in the near future.
e.g. Hints and Tips for Whistleblowers - Technical Hints and Tips for protecting the anonymity of sources for Whistleblowers, Investigative Journalists, Campaign Activists and Political Bloggers etc. by Spy Blog http://ht4w.co.uk
Naturally this is a Work in Progress, which would benefit from your suggestions, but it should provide at least a couple of valuable hints, even to experienced bloggers and journalists and activists.
However, since you can read this online at your leisure, what else can you do, to help to defy, frustrate and oppose the machinations of the Surveillance Snooper Stalker Nanny Secret Police State and Bureaucracy, and some of the other, powerful non-Government vested interests who are also after your personal details, especially if they guess that you may now be actively , rather than passively opposed to them ?
Obviously attendees of the Convention on Modern Liberty should join and financially support some of the campaign groups like the NO2ID Campaign or the the Open Rights Group etc. , who welcome people from across the political spectrum. No doubt you can sign up to these at the event on Saturday, as well as online.
However, there are some things that you can only do face to face, with like minded people, physically at the Convention on Modern Liberties:
Modern Liberty swap shop
Here are a few ideas for stuff to bring along to the Convention on Modern Liberty this Saturday, and to physically swap or sell to some of the thousand or so people who you might meet face to face at this event.
Even if you never personally actually make regular use these Swapped Items, you will have increased the entropy and freedom of others, and will have helped to frustrate the control freaks somewhat.
"Anonymity Loves Company"
If you do swap or privately sell (for a nominal cost covering fee, for example, to reimburse stored monetary value or unused credit) things at the Modern Liberty swap shop, you should hopefully be out of sight of CCTV spy cameras and you will be hidden amongst a large crowd of equally, or more suspicious looking, political dissidents and opponents of the Surveillance Police State: