In the current political climate, with all the buzz about SOPA & PIPA and now H.R.1981 & ACTA, Hawaii state representative John Mizuno has to be outside of his mind to introduce a comical piece of legislation like H.B. 2288.
Take that back. In any climate, John Mizuno would have to be outside of his mind to introduce a bill like this. That is, unless it passes - in which case we will all feel like we're the ones taking the crazy pills.
Anyway, the idiotic and dangerous bill that I'm referring to was proposed on Friday and would basically require all internet providers to retain customer records for a time "no less than two years." The "customer records" would not only include each subscriber's personal information, but their entire browsing history.
Seriously. The language is as plain as it is vague. Check it out:
Recordkeeping requirements for internet service providers. Any internet service provider that provides internet service to a consumer in the State shall retain consumer records for no less than two years. The required data for the consumer records shall include each subscriber’s information and internet destination history information. Destination information shall include any of the following:
(1) Internet protocol address;
(2) Domain name; or
(3) Host name.
This is the only directive included in H.B. 2288. Nothing else to describe motivations, or specific clarifications either. When a politician introduces legislation this moronic, one immediately thinks about ulterior motives. But what could Rep. Mizuno have to gain from this?
The bill simply requires ISPs to log all of this data and makes no mentions of how they can use it or who they can give it to - the police? Advertisers?
And as CNET points out, if passed, this could end up affecting more than just Hawaiian citizens:
Because the wording is so broad and applies to any company that "provides access to the Internet," Mizuno's legislation could sweep in far more than AT&T, Verizon, and Hawaii's local Internet providers. It could also impose sweeping new requirements on coffee shops, bookstores, and hotels frequented by the over 6 million tourists who visit the islands each year.
The bill is being heard in the House today. A companion bill has also been introduced in the Hawaii State Senate, with no hearing yet scheduled.
I'm not sure that I've heard legislation so dangerously vague in quite some time. What do you guys think? Let us know in the comments.