A short time ago, we posted a story about reallyready.org the website created by the Federation of American Scientists (FAS) to highlight the many inconsistencies and faults on the Department of Homeland Security’s emergency preparedness website Ready.gov.
Michael Stebbins, director biology policy at FAS, posted an update to the saga on monday. It seems that DHS believes there is some intellectual property infringement going on and so sent a Cease and desist letter (PDF) to FAS.
It seems disingenuous to me that, rather than incorporating FAS’ analysis of ready.gov and making a much better, more informative emergency preparedness Web site for the public, DHS resorts to CYA scare tactics, trademark infringement letters, and obfuscation.
An unbiased observer would be forgiven for at least suspecting that DHS is not really concerned about confusing the public, they are using these use mark demands as a way to stifle a site that is embarrassing to them. Rather than worry about what they should be worrying about, providing clear information to the public, they are worrying that they look bad. We could hope for more, but the DHS that we are dealing with turns out to be a bunch of petty cover-your-ass bureaucrats more concerned about embarrassment than doing their jobs. I urge you to read my letter back to them and spread the word.