Final Word from Thursday, April 23, 2020

The first time a court allowed data from a voice-command device to be seized as evidence of a crime was in Dec. 2015 in Arkansas. That same month, Amazon was served with a search warrant for recordings from one of its Echo smart speakers. The charges of murder were eventually dropped, but a precedent had been set. Czechs with all the latest gadgets and who like to linger over dinner with the family might keep this in mind as they serve out the final days of the state of emergency. When we wrote that Czechs were being subjected to the strictest restrictions on their movement and behavior in their 1,000-year history, several readers replied that the clampdown was tighter after the assassination of Reinhard Heydrich in May 1942. Perhaps so, but never in Czech history has a government ordered individuals to limit contact with all other people, including immediate family members, to the bare minimum. This truly draconian rule was imposed by Health Min. Adam Vojtěch as of March 24 and is still in effect. If you've been violating it, Alexa, Google Home or Siri might very well have the proof. [ Czech Republic listening ]

Glossary of difficult words

to linger - to stay in a place longer than necessary because of a reluctance to leave;

clampdown - a concerted or harsh attempt to suppress something;

bare - only just sufficient.

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