Seattle smart-meter vendor says that if we know how their system works, the terrorists will win

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Nothing raises the ire of the urban / suburban homeowner like a smart meter, nothing.


Some folks get to think about more interesting issues at work than others. I envy these lawyers.

@TobinL ETA I envy the lawyers assisting Mr. Mocek. The others are acting like jerks.

I hope there are some lawyers — or a lawyer — assisting Mr. Mocek …

Ladies & Gentlemen,
Please be advised that, this afternoon, we filed a lawsuit in King County Superior Court seeking declaratory and injunctive relief, and damages, …


this gif is turning out to be way more useful than I ever thought.


Which is ridiculous, because everyone knows that the terrorists won years ago when we decided to be guided by our fears of terrorism.


See this is reasoning for hating smart meters that I can understand and get behind. However the EMF weirdos… are all like this stuff causes cancer by sending wif, that sounds ridiculous. I don’t understand why they just can’t have a system that sends a monthly number of KWH’s used and leave it at that.


But that leaves very little extra information about the revenue source (customer) they can sell to third parties for additional profit!


It’s an interesting issue. The EMF concern is bogus but that’s not what Mocek is is arguing on.

Your agency’s program of replacing A) devices which measure total energy usage, provide an interface consisting of analog dials that move proportionately to energy usage (thus as visible and comprehensible to ratepayers as a clock on the wall), which have for decades been effectively sampled with frequency sufficient for accurately billing ratepayers, with B) devices with unspecified and unverifiable sensors that monitor activity inside of private property and can communicate collected information in real-time to unspecified machines in remote locations, the workings of which are obscured from ratepayers, with interfaces used by your agency that require specialized equipment and are thus completely unavailable to ratepayers for personal use or monitoring and verification of information communicated, is already shrouded in secrecy and seemingly proceeding despite repeated voicing of public concern and complete lack of public justification of expense.

I’m not sure the concern about determining precisely what devices people are powering is justified at this point. The fact that the vendors aren’t allowing their meters to be verified is.

Wild. Exactly what damages are they alleging over a guy trying to uncover how they’ve determined their own devices are accurate? Damages over lost business if it turns out their devices aren’t? :laughing:

I mean, sure, it’s more likely that they’re trying to scare him into retracting his FOIA request but even that’s pretty evil.

Anyone who trusts the information they get off these gets exactly what they deserve: terrible information. It’s crappy that the government is planning on selling it and that’s worthy of some outrage. But the idea that they’re going to be able to tell you have … 3 iPads and a side by side refrigerator is pretty questionable at this point.


Because that way they can’t charge you extra when you’re using a lot of power during a peak time. Or using more than they think you ought to today because you need to recharge the battery on your funny electro-cars. And that’s why I got pissed off enough to put 5kW of PV on my roof. :wink:


Smart Meters should:

Send back kilowatt/hours used.

A by hour report on power useage.

Optionally if a customer has power generation of their own the meter should be able to do a by hour report on power generation. If the grid ever became two way these meters should be able to take from where power is being stored to where it is needed, such as when the substation goes down because ice storms or other damage.

Not a per-outlet, not a care what devices are being used. No identifying marks save for the filing number on the bill.


That happens now here in California. On most sunny days here in San Diego, I feed the grid and my meter effectively runs backwards. SDG&E/Sempra (the local power monopoly) is doing their damnedest to stop that, though.


I have heard if you agree to let the power people do optimizations on home energy production they tend to gimp you. Unsure how true this is.

Also curious on why they are digging heels in. Expand! Guys expand your services to offer PV/wind generation/installation, mantinance on customer equipment. Basically transition to a mantinance service alongside power generation. There’s money to be made, why fight it?


Last year we installed a 5kw solar grid on our roof, with an experimental model inverter. For the first three months it was operational, the electric company had the wrong meter in place; it would stop running forward when the panels produced more power than the household was using, but (despite promises) we were not credited for electricity we pumped back into the grid. It took several weeks of nagging for the appropriate smart meter to be installed, and we never were rebated for power we ‘donated’ to the electric company. Then we discovered that all the smart meter did was allow the electric company to remotely read our consumption once a month; the fine breakdown of what we generated vs. what we used (that was supposed to monitor the inverter performance) was never activated. YMMV, but I think ‘stupid’ was mistaken for ‘Machiavellian’.




Your poor taste in booze is not my problem.



With phrases such as:

devices with unspecified and unverifiable sensors…the workings of which are obscured from ratepayers…for personal use or monitoring and verification of information communicated

I’m thinking it’s more about sekrit sensors collecting bio- and electro-mechanical signatures or somesuch than about meter-makers giving the weights and measures folks their proper look-in on the meters’ accuracy.


Sounds like a story for possible state AG, DOJ and FTC complaints.


Depending on what the meters are supposedly going to be used for, it may not be that iffy for Mocek to ask, though. Under lab conditions, it is reasonably possible to determine whether someone has a refrigerator running, etc.

If, for example, Seattle is going to start charging more for running certain appliances on the basis of what the smart meter thinks is running … that technology is not reliable enough to trust it with how much money you’re charging people.

Maybe Mocek could have written the FOIA better but this really doesn’t seem like “I’m allergic to WIFI” style stuff.