Outlandish, indeed. Not only would such a proposal be technically unfeasible and impose a huge cost on everyone involved, it would also require additional monitoring and bureaucracy to ensure that citizens were provided their notices. Ironic! It would be much easier to place large, friendly posters in public locations to gently remind citizens that they are being watched. Here are some alternative hypotheticals, all admittedly unrealistic to varying degrees: 1) Judiciary reverses course on the third-party doctrine. All of your personal information, including metadata, has 4th Amendment protections, even if it is accessible by a third-party (e.g. phone company, ISP, etc.) Very unlikely, but I do think that the concept of "expectation of privacy" needs to be reexamined now that nearly every single thing you do is logged by a third party. 2) Improved transparency; less secrecy. Executive branch fesses up to what they've been doing---no, you, it doesn't count that people inside the beltway, in law enforcement, in intelligence, and readers of the Economist already knew this type of thing was going on, I'm talking about informing Joe "I only watch Kardashian Idol Star" Schmoe---and provides some sort of additional, independent oversight mechanism. A more informative presidential address would be a start. Public annual reports and statistics would also be nice. But this is also unlikely. 3) Congress amends the language of the PATRIOT Act to be more specific about what it does and doesn't allow. I think this one is the most likely, but still not certain. The surveillance programs seem to have a lot of support in Congress, and on both sides of the aisle. 4) Constitutional amendment of some sort. Never going to happen. As with #3, intelligence and law enforcement communities (among others) would raise hell about their toys being taken away. You don't want the terrorists to win, do you?