Apple, FBI battle a wedge issue for American voters, poll shows

Posted:
in iPhone
The ongoing philosophical debate between Silicon Valley -- with Apple at the forefront -- and the federal government over encryption has split the American electorate in two distinct but equal camps, a new survey shows.




Some 47 percent of those polled are worried that the government may not go far enough to protect the country through surveillance, while 44 percent said they were concerned that the government would overstep its boundaries. The data was collected by the Wall Street Journal and NBC News from 1,200 registered voters between March 3 and March 6.

Republican voters favored the government's side 57 percent to 37 percent, while Democratic voters skewed in the opposite direction -- 50 percent worried that the government would go too far, while 40 percent worried that they would not go far enough.

When asked if Apple should cooperate with the FBI's request, 42 percent answered yes while 47 percent said no. The remaining 11 percent were undecided.

Apple has received nearly unanimous support from Silicon Valley, with more than two dozen American technology firms signing amicus briefs backing the iPhone maker. A number of civil liberties groups, including the ACLU and EFF, have also stepped in on Apple's side.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 29
    There's no division. Any person properly educated on the issues would side with Apple. I've seen the brief questions for all these polls done regarding the FBI and Apple and they are so vague there's no way the people fully understand what's going on.
    bdkennedy1002londornolamacguycalitheunfetteredmindmagman1979ewtheckmanjkichlinepscooter63tallest skil
  • Reply 2 of 29
    stskstsk Posts: 21member
    Or, put another way, People who can read side with Apple. People who can't side with the Feebs. Or... people who think building the Great Wall of Mexico side with the Feebs Or... people who think it's smart to attack people solely based on religion side with the Feebs Or... people who think it's fine for Halliburton to move its HQ to Dubai to avoid US tax and escape prosecution, while calling for a boycott of Apple...
    londorcalimessagepad2100magman1979latifbpjkichlinebaconstanglostkiwiai46palomine
  • Reply 3 of 29
    isidoreisidore Posts: 47member
    Yes but this isn't an exclusively US issue and the real problem is how other countries would exploit a back door that the Feds insisted that Apple create. You don't think that if this happened in the US it would not then be used in every other country with an aggressively nosey government?
    lostkiwi
  • Reply 4 of 29
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 19,056member
    While it's nice to know, what the public thinks about this issue is not terribly relevant. It's not like the founding fathers (yes, they were 'fathers') went around polling people on which parts of the Bill of Rights they liked and which they did not.
    ewtheckmanlostkiwipalomine
  • Reply 5 of 29
    icoco3icoco3 Posts: 1,458member
    Get into court and an Apple lawyer asks the FBI why they have not asked Google, Samsung, etc to do this.  FBI answers, "Oh, those are easy to get data from."  Result? iPhone sales skyrocket...
    edited March 2016 calilostkiwikevin kee
  • Reply 6 of 29
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    I've seen pathetic fandroids vote against Apple. Their excuse was that Apple shared a backdoor with China to sell there(ZERO evidence).

    Stupid people/iHaters know no limits.
    magman1979lostkiwikevin kee
  • Reply 7 of 29
    bobjohnsonbobjohnson Posts: 154member
    While it's nice to know, what the public thinks about this issue is not terribly relevant. It's not like the founding fathers (yes, they were 'fathers') went around polling people on which parts of the Bill of Rights they liked and which they did not.

    Public perception is extremely important in a battle like this; it's not 1791 anymore. If you want Congress to pass strict restrictions, you better make damn sure they know there will be electoral consequences for voting the wrong way.
    ai46palominekevin kee
  • Reply 8 of 29
    I think the story is getting distorted, leading to a lot of people are likely misunderstanding the issue. Apple HAS cooperated with the FBI to provide data as well as recommendations, etc. They only stopped when they asked for them to create a new tool/software to lower security so the FBI can hack the phone. People are just hearing "Apple is not cooperating" and think they've done nothing to assist. The media and FBI are not helping in clearing up this misconception either.
    jdgazicoco3ewtheckmanjkichlinebaconstanglostkiwipalominekevin kee
  • Reply 10 of 29
    focherfocher Posts: 638member
    I'm not aware of anyone ever making the claim that Obama and his administration have been any better about civil liberties vs the surveillance state that started under Bush. He has, in many ways, expanded it (while also restricting other aspects). Agreed that he doesn't have clean hands on the subject.

    However...

    To equate Republicans and Democrats on this topic is rather disingenuous. There are obviously people from all political views who both agree and disagree with the two viewpoints in this situation. But from a statistical view, it's not balanced and actually is skewed the opposite direction as you insinuate. According to the NBC/WSJ poll released today, the following stats come out:

    "Republicans favored the government’s position 57% to 37%, while Democrats sided with Apple 50% to 40%. Strongest support for Apple was among independent voters, who back Apple by a 2-to-1 ratio, at 58% to 28%." - 9to5Mac

    This is exactly the type of issue where people from different political leanings can appreciate common ground.
    icoco3ai46
  • Reply 11 of 29
    mike1mike1 Posts: 1,850member
    I think the story is getting distorted, leading to a lot of people are likely misunderstanding the issue. Apple HAS cooperated with the FBI to provide data as well as recommendations, etc. They only stopped when they asked for them to create a new tool/software to lower security so the FBI can hack the phone. People are just hearing "Apple is not cooperating" and think they've done nothing to assist. The media and FBI are not helping in clearing up this misconception either.

    Facts are stubborn things and when they don't support your message, you ignore them. Therefore, the media ignores the facts to sensationalize the issue and gain readers/viewers and the FBI ignores the facts because they screwed up.
    icoco3theunfetteredmind
  • Reply 12 of 29
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,850member
    focher said:
    I'm not aware of anyone ever making the claim that Obama and his administration have been any better about civil liberties vs the surveillance state that started under Bush. He has, in many ways, expanded it (while also restricting other aspects). Agreed that he doesn't have clean hands on the subject.

    However...

    To equate Republicans and Democrats on this topic is rather disingenuous. There are obviously people from all political views who both agree and disagree with the two viewpoints in this situation. But from a statistical view, it's not balanced and actually is skewed the opposite direction as you insinuate. According to the NBC/WSJ poll released today, the following stats come out:

    "Republicans favored the government’s position 57% to 37%, while Democrats sided with Apple 50% to 40%. Strongest support for Apple was among independent voters, who back Apple by a 2-to-1 ratio, at 58% to 28%." - 9to5Mac

    This is exactly the type of issue where people from different political leanings can appreciate common ground.
    There are quite a few vociferous Obama defenders here and I suspect some will appear soon to blindly defend him from this article.
  • Reply 13 of 29
    rob53rob53 Posts: 2,007member
    focher said:
    I'm not aware of anyone ever making the claim that Obama and his administration have been any better about civil liberties vs the surveillance state that started under Bush. He has, in many ways, expanded it (while also restricting other aspects). Agreed that he doesn't have clean hands on the subject.

    However...

    To equate Republicans and Democrats on this topic is rather disingenuous. There are obviously people from all political views who both agree and disagree with the two viewpoints in this situation. But from a statistical view, it's not balanced and actually is skewed the opposite direction as you insinuate. According to the NBC/WSJ poll released today, the following stats come out:

    "Republicans favored the government’s position 57% to 37%, while Democrats sided with Apple 50% to 40%. Strongest support for Apple was among independent voters, who back Apple by a 2-to-1 ratio, at 58% to 28%." - 9to5Mac

    This is exactly the type of issue where people from different political leanings can appreciate common ground.
    There are quite a few vociferous Obama defenders here and I suspect some will appear soon to blindly defend him from this article.
    I'll start. You do realize that the President of the US has become a figurehead but has their hands tied by Congress and other government agencies most of the time. The majority of the US government are civil servants not hired by the President. Obama can only speak about things, he doesn't have the power to change most things, including how stupid people in the FBI are. I talked to my hard-lined Republican in-laws about this and had to explain exactly what's going on. Initially they sided with the FBI because they are pulled into the terrorism thing hook, line and sinker. When I told them what was going on, they began to understand and sided with Apple. They don't like big government any more than other Republicans do (except when it benefits them) but also don't appreciate the government spying on its citizens. 

    Can Obama do something for the people in this instance? Hell yes! Will he? Probably not because he's trying to get Congress to allow him to appoint a replacement to the US Supreme Court so he's weighing his options. Does Washington DC need some slapping around, a ton of firing, and a whole lot of restructuring? Second hell yes! Will that happen? Not in my lifetime. Our government's actions didn't start yesterday or when Obama became President, it started falling apart a long time ago.
    lostkiwipscooter63ai46
  • Reply 14 of 29
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    rob53 said:
    You do realize that the President of the US has become a figurehead but has their hands tied by Congress and other government agencies most of the time.
    This isn’t Airstrip One. That’s not how it works. The president is becoming ever more like a dictatorial body, and he CONTROLS the other government agencies as part of the executive branch.
    Not in my lifetime.
    Not with that attitude.
    designr
  • Reply 15 of 29
    volcanvolcan Posts: 1,770member
    While it's nice to know, what the public thinks about this issue is not terribly relevant. It's not like the founding fathers (yes, they were 'fathers') went around polling people on which parts of the Bill of Rights they liked and which they did not.
    Actually the Bill of Rights was the result of anti-federalists who were mostly in disagreement with the the founding fathers who are generally described as those signing the Declaration of Independence and who took part in drafting the Constitution. The difference between the founding fathers and current day politicians is that the founding fathers were then subjects of Britain, not part of a government.

    Today's politicians are completely different. They live for the attention, entitlement and many times, corruption. They may start out thinking they want to make things better but soon find out that they have to play the game and eventually succumb to greed and personal benefit motivations. The salaries of politicians aren't very high compared to what they could earn in private business, hence the temptation to accept favors. There are few if any civil servants in congress. Parents have aspirations for their children, but they seldom encourage them to become politicians. Today's politicians are more despicable than ambulance chasing lawyers.

    With one of the choices we have for president this election, a military coup d'état is not completely out of the question.
    edited March 2016
  • Reply 16 of 29
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    volcan said:
    They may start out thinking they want to make things better but soon find out that they have to play the game and eventually succumb to greed and personal benefit motivations.
    Politics doesn’t change people. It just shows us who they really were.
    With one of the choices we have for president this election, a military coup d'état is not completely out of the question.
    Aw man, the military revolting if Hillary steals the election would be spectacular.
  • Reply 17 of 29
    magman1979magman1979 Posts: 1,114member
    sog35 said:
    The two camps on this issue:

    Idiots support the FBI

    Smart people support Apple



    Couldn't have put it more succinctly myself!

    There's no division. Any person properly educated on the issues would side with Apple. I've seen the brief questions for all these polls done regarding the FBI and Apple and they are so vague there's no way the people fully understand what's going on.
    One would think the questions posed during these polls were deliberately worded to further confuse the general populous and make them side with the feds...

    cali said:
    I've seen pathetic fandroids vote against Apple. Their excuse was that Apple shared a backdoor with China to sell there(ZERO evidence).

    Stupid people/iHaters know no limits.
    Indeed... And how is it we've not heard a single PEEP out of any agency asking Google for assistance with cracking Android shitboxes? It's because they already have full access to that steaming pile of dung because it has so many vulnerabilities and ways of gaining access already. Yet people still buy that garbage, unbelievable...
    kevin keespinnyd
  • Reply 18 of 29
    hmurchisonhmurchison Posts: 12,227member
    If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy. 
    James Madison. 

    Wars on ideology make zero sense unless you look at who stands to gain from the conflicts.  Governments worldwide are using the same strategy that has existed for centuries. 
    spinnyd
  • Reply 19 of 29
    volcanvolcan Posts: 1,770member
    Aw man, the military revolting if Hillary steals the election would be spectacular.
    The next time Mitt Romney comes on the TV, I would not be surprised if he says that even Hillary would make a better president than Trump.
  • Reply 20 of 29
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    volcan said:
    The next time Mitt Romney comes on the TV, I would not be surprised if he says that even Hillary would make a better president than Trump.
    I’m to understand the current plan is for the GOPe to break away and run their own third party under Romney if Trump clinches the nomination, so he might not want to say something that he’ll have to backpedal. They’re still hoping for a stolen stacked shilled brokered convention, though.
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