Stop Apple's iPhone Kill Switch

Think you own your smartphone? Think again. Apple wants to patent technology that can detect when people are using their phone cameras and shut them down.

Apple says this kill switch technology was designed to stop concertgoers from taking unofficial video at live events. But thousands of people across the Middle East have used cellphone cameras to document government abuses. This technology would also give tyrants the power to stem the flow of protest videos and crack down on their citizens with impunity.

Sign our letter to Apple CEO Steve Jobs and demand that Apple pull the plug on technology that harms democracy and free speech.

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    Dear Steve Jobs, 

    As you know, smartphones are extensions of ourselves: They are incredibly powerful tools for communication, education, political expression, community organizing and plain fun.

    That's why I'm concerned that Apple wants to patent a sensor that would detect when people are using their phone cameras -- and give corporations the power to shut them down. 

    But just imagine what would happen if this technology fell into the hands of repressive regimes. As we’ve seen in Egypt and elsewhere, the images and videos we take with our phones can be powerful forms of free speech. That's why governments that feel threatened by mobile devices are doing what they can to control how we use them. This tool could be used to silence the voices of protesters and to stifle a critical means of free expression.

    I urge you to immediately stop plans to develop cellphone censorship technology.