Tuesday, 27 July 2010

UAE has a grudge against the Blackberry

As soon as I read the headline "UAE says RIM’s BlackBerry a threat to national security, social mores" I thought, "Wouldn't it be easier to beef up national security measures than try to change the business practices of a foreign and very popular company?" You don't outlaw arms and legs because someone's figured out how to climb over your fence, even if people are doing it unintentionally. (Accidental climbing? Ok, that example is a bit of a stretch.)

The article mostly describes how Blackberry users' privacy was being threatened, apparently by a UAE state-run mobility company, but doesn't really explain how national security is being threatened. Unless we have something explanation of the dangers, it's impossible to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of curtailing a valuable communication tool and unfortunately, it seems like it's the UAE government that's withholding the needed information.

I can certainly imagine how it would be possible for communication technologies to present new threats against reasonable safety efforts but is it worth harming your own people and yourself in this seemingly blind way? Removing or substantially altering such a useful and popular tool can only harm productivity and socialization, and therefore success and happiness. Try again, UAE.

[ Referring to "UAE says RIM’s BlackBerry a threat to national security, social mores" from The Globe and Mail ]

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