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July 18, 2014 | Jim Killock

Dear Theresa, see you in court

Parliament has a done a terrible thing. They’ve ignored a court judgment and shoved complex law through a legislative mincer in just three days.

But in doing so they won’t have had the final word. You’ve already shown them the growing public opposition to mass surveillance. There was incredible action from supporters: 4458 of you wrote to your MPs with even more phoning up on the day of the vote.  Together we helped 49 MPs rebel against the Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill. It may have passed, but thanks to you they know that we do not agree.

Help us challenge DRIP: Join now

Whilst Parliament swallowed Theresa May’s tired arguments that “terrorist plots will go undetected” and “these are powers and capabilities that exist today", she failed to make a compelling argument that holding everyone’s data is necessary and proportionate. Frankly, the Government was evasive and duplicitous, and they were in a hurry to cover their tracks. 

Tom Watson MP described the process as “democratic banditry, resonant of a rogue state. The people who put this shady deal together should be ashamed.”

And the European Court’s decision was very clear: blanket data retention is unlawful and violates the right to privacy. 

The courts will have the final say on whether DRIP breaches human rights. And no matter what David Cameron believes, the UK has international obligations.  The European Convention on Human Rights, the European Charter of Fundamental Rights and our own Human Rights Act – all exist to defend our rights and are where we will be able to challenge DRIP.

And that’s what we will do.

The ECJ has stated once that blanket data retention is unlawful. This means we have strong grounds to challenge the new legislation on the same basis. That’s where we need you. We can initiate legal action with your help: please join ORG today. 

We’re already meeting with lawyers and taking Counsel’s advice to work out the best way to take the Government to court. We will work with every other group who is willing to help. But a major legal battle like this is going to be tough. The more resources we have, the more we’ll be able to do to stand up to DRIP.  

Our supporters do a huge amount to stand up for human rights. Together we won against the Snoopers' Charter and against ACTA. Right now joining ORG is a way to ensure we can challenge and stop DRIP.

UPDATE Friday 5pm: Over 200 people have joined ORG in the last week, and 100 of those today. 

UPDATE Saturday 9am:  Over 260 people have joined to support us in the fight against #DRIP.

UPDATE Sunday 11am:  Over 300 people have joined to support us in the fight against #DRIP. Please join to support our work!

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Comments (6)

  1. Katabasis:
    Jul 18, 2014 at 10:48 AM

    "Together we helped 49 MPs rebel against the Data Retention and Investigatory Powers Bill"

    - Whilst I'm fully behind you on this issue, please ensure that this is reported correctly. 49 MPs voted for an amendment to stop the bill being rushed through. Of those original 49 approximately 20 of them did NOT vote against DRIP in the final reading.

  2. zoobab:
    Jul 18, 2014 at 12:23 PM

    Do you have an IBAN/BIC bank account where anonymous people can donate money?

  3. Ruth:
    Jul 18, 2014 at 01:29 PM

    There is currently an option for donating with bitcoins at

  4. Ade:
    Jul 18, 2014 at 02:24 PM

    Para. beginning 'We're already meeting with lawyers...', 2nd sentence 'We will work every other group...' - [should read] 'We will work [with]...'.

  5. Rob Bell:
    Jul 18, 2014 at 05:26 PM

    You should volunteer as grammar checker Ade, I'm sure your proofreading skills would be appreciated.

  6. Matteo Bergamini:
    Jul 20, 2014 at 02:57 PM

    DRIP was the last straw for most Britons, it is a clear attack on our privacy and we fully support the Open Rights Group's move in bringing a clearly illegal move by the current government to justice.

    We are a small, 1 and a bit year old, news group. Although small we wish to bring what you are doing to the attention of as many people as we can.

    From our readers, journalists and Myself, I say thank you and you have our support.

    Matteo, Founder of Shout Out UK

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