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Google to Give Data To Brazilian Court 182

Posted by Zonk
from the not-much-they-could-do dept.
Edu writes to mention a Washington Post article about Google's olive branch to the Brazilian courts. Despite previously refusing to reveal search information to the U.S. government, the company has announced they'll be releasing information on hate groups to the Brazilian courts. The move is intended to allow the Brazilian government to identify users associated with homophobic and racist groups. From the article: "Orkut pulls objectionable words and pictures from user sites, but Google stores content it feels could be useful in a lawsuit. Orkut is especially popular in Brazil, which accounts for 75 percent of its 17 million users. Legal and privacy experts said that Google had no choice but to comply with the court order. 'From the law enforcement perspective, if the records are in the possession of the business, the business can be compelled to produce them,' said Marc Rotenberg, executive director of the Washington-based Electronic Privacy Information Center."
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Google to Give Data To Brazilian Court

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  • by daniil (775990) <evilbj8rn@hotmail.com> on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @09:25AM (#16043953) Journal
    ...note that this is about Orkut, not search results.
    • by voice_of_all_reason (926702) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @09:31AM (#16043995)
      Not only that, but it appears in this case they are asking for data concerning "person X", which they apparently have the equivalent of probable cause to obtain.

      Of course, this is ignoring the fact that "promoting hate" should not be a crime in the country Google hails from.
      • by Tim C (15259)
        Of course, this is ignoring the fact that "promoting hate" should not be a crime in the country Google hails from.

        While that's true, it doesn't prevent google from providing the requested information if they wish to, it merely means that they (presumably) cannot be compelled to do so.
      • by knightmad (931578) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @10:12AM (#16044278)
        True, there is a probable cause, and it is a little bit worse than "promoting hate", but "conspiring to commit a crime". One (of the many) examples that comes to my head is a group of neo-nazi that harassed a particular user (a black young boy) not only online (messaging him via the site, and creating a "community" with a "let's kill him" theme), but using the info they gathered about him on Orkut to harass him on his own homeplace.

        Anyway, there are anti-discrimination laws in Brasil since the nineties, and racism (bigotry, in general) is a federal crime there. But, if I'm not wrong (IANAL), there is a difference in our law between "I hate " and "I hate you John Doe, you fucking ". The former counts as free speech, the latter doesn't. I may be wrong, I don't know.
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          Why wouldn't the brazilian agency just say that then, and avoid all the fuss? Incompetence? Or lack of evidence?

          Investigating conspiracy-to-commit-murder via Orkut would not generate nearly the same amount of news. Don't places in the US (myspace, etc) roll over with this information all the time?
          • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

            by franksands (938435)
            They said it from the start. The problem is that Google was refusing the give this info saying that since they are a company from the US, they are did not need to obey Brazilian laws.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by bogado (25959)
        "racism" and "prejudice" are against the law in Brazil, google has a branch here and the government is fining this branch for no-cooperation with the law. As far as I know, yes those are related to certain people that have been promoting those hate-crimes and pedophilia in the site.

        I like the fact that google resisted until the end, and I don't like the fact that the government forced him to release this data. This is a bad thing, first because I believe that if someone would like to catch those people, Ork
      • by vhogemann (797994)
        By "hate", I guess they really mean racism.

        Unfortunatelly there are some racist and nazi-facist groups here at Brazil. And racism, and other forms of discrimination are crimes under the brazilian law. Also, there are some groups using Orkut to promote child pornography, and worst, child prostitution.

        The brazilian authorities had been on a cruzade to erradicate children exploration, and I think that is fair to give them all the help we can.
        • by voice_of_all_reason (926702) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @10:50AM (#16044554)
          Lumping your former examples with your latter is a bit unfair. They're not even in the same league. Of course, they do the same thing in America, too.

          Racism shouldn't be a crime in and of itself -- freedom of speech is something every country should agree on. The same pithy claim google makes that "we have to abide by their laws!!!oneone" doesn't refuse the fact that they are legitimizing an unjust law.

          Do i expect all the employees of Orkut to destroy the data and go to prison for it? No. But it still doesn't make handing over the data justified. What's that cliche about "I vas just following orders..."
          • by vhogemann (797994)
            Well,

            If someone refuses you a job because the color of your skin, or you sexual option, or the religion you belive in he is on it's his right to do so? Well, he MAY have this right, but living on a society has more to do with obligations than with rights. Nobody has the right to humiliate or hurt other person based on its skin color, beliefs or social origin.

            So, yes... you can be a racist here at Brazil. You just can't commit racial discrimination.

            Also, the people being chased use Orkut actively to promote
          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            by Rivabem (312224)
            Racism shouldn't be a crime in and of itself -- freedom of speech is something every country should agree on

            I have a friend that paid a U$12,000 fine in Boston for saying "wow, nice" while looking a afro-american girl's breast.

            If he said "die stinky niggers!" would it be fredom of speech?

            In Brazil some girls would put a smile in their face. Some would not like, but would never take that to court. Even if they don't like, and take to court, they'd never win, because, like her or not, it was kind of a complim
      • Of course, this is ignoring the fact that "promoting hate" should not be a crime in the country Google hails from.

        While Google is a US company they still operate in Brazil and as such they need to obey Brazilian law, just as they, MS, and Yahoo do in China. I may not like it but if they don't want to follow the rules then they don't need to be there. Or they can work to change the laws. As for "promoting hate", it depends on how it is being promoted as to whether it should be legal or not. Simply spe

      • they are asking for data concerning "person X", which they apparently have the equivalent of probable cause to obtain.

        Please, keep in mind that in this Brazil vs Orkut case they have chosen the most evil path. They don't want to risk losing the $$$ they get from adwords in Brazil, even if that's just a very small percentage of their total sales.

        You shouldn't think in terms of the US Constitution, because the Brazilian "constitution" doesn't have any teeth. Even if there is a nominal protection for "freedom

        • Your post sheds alot of light on the country. I guess they'd hate that shirt I just saw on some website. Front asks "How much does jesus love you?" Back is a smiling cartoon of him on the cross, arms outstretched. "THIS much!"
    • ...note that this is about Orkut, not search results.
      After all, what's a technicality between friends?
  • From the law enforcement perspective, if the records are in the possession of the business, the business can be compelled to produce them

    Now, I may be a little lacking in the intricacies of where exactly large company data is stored on these interwebs, but just to throw out a crazy example: some Google executive visiting brazil transfers some very sensitive information from the company mainframe to do work on his vacation. Now since the information has been copied physically to brazil, it's fair game?
    • by shystershep (643874) * <bdshepherd@NosPAM.gmail.com> on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @09:39AM (#16044045) Homepage Journal

      By "compelled to produce," the article is talking about Google obeying a court order. If a court has jurisdiction over a company, it doesn't matter where the information is -- the company has to obey that order or face the consequences (or try to convince the court the order is invalid somehow).

      The article summary is horribly misleading (even more so than normal): this is nothing like Google refusing to give the US government access to search info. There was no court order to do so (think subpoena), and so Google told them to take a hike. IIRC, even at that time Google specifically stated that if there had been a lawful court order, it would have complied.

      • by rtb61 (674572)
        The story has more to do with data that google is keeping. Think of a society where every word you ever wrote, every word you ever spoke, every gesture you ever made, regardless of the heat of the moment, your state of sobriety or just plain bad judgement could and would be used against you.

        It is a little chilling we google starts keeping stuff about people because they think it might be useful in a law suit or for what ever other reason they might consider economically advantageous.

        Google should start

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by False Data (153793)
      At least according to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brazil#Government_and _Politics [wikipedia.org], Brazil is a democracy. This is a choice the people of Brazil made about how they choose to run their society, so not quite the same as the situation in China where the political system raises questions--at least in my mind--about how more than a small set of the population feels about it.

      I wouldn't be the least surprised to find out that, if a data cable crosses through a country's territory, that country can follow its own
      • by bigpat (158134) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @12:49PM (#16045618)
        This is a choice the people of Brazil made about how they choose to run their society

        Democracy does not equal freedom. Freedom is when a society recognizes that some things are none of its business. Democracy is about what to do with everything else.
    • by Ath (643782) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @10:30AM (#16044395)
      The concept of legal jurisdiction for a court is a bit more complex but not too hard to understand. There are primarily two types: subject matter and personal (or physical). Subject matter is when the court has been given legal authority based on the actual subject being covered in the legal case. Personal / physical jurisdiction is rather easy to understand. If you are in the terroritory where the court has authority, that court has control over you and any posessions you have.

      So your example is easy to deal with. While a Brazilian court may or may not under Brazilian law have subject matter jurisdiction over the specific records on your hard drive, if you go to Brazil with that laptop then all bets are off and jurisdiction is established.

      Want to hear the real rub? If you are in an airplane flying over a particular country (or even state in the USA) then they have personal jurisdiction over you.

  • by RobotRunAmok (595286) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @09:28AM (#16043976)
    Show the world that Big Brother, Fascism and Censorship know no Left/Right wing ideology!

  • by Anonymous Coward
    This is completly different than what the US gov't did. In this case it was a court order that Google was compelled to fulfil. What happened in the U.S. was the government asked google to hand over records, without mentioning the purpose.
    • ... it was a court order that Google was compelled to fulfil ... in the U.S. was the government asked google to hand over records, without mentioning the purpose.

      So, you think that the mere fact that a court orders something makes it automagically right?

      Have you tried to look at the facts behind the news? Brazilian laws are so ridiculous that people in more civilized countries have no idea of what happens in this case.

      I'm a Brazilian user of Orkut, but I have nothing at all to do with those prosecuted peo

  • by Secrity (742221) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @09:29AM (#16043984)
    Google's habit of logging EVERYTHING is starting to get a bit scary. EVERYTHING that a person has EVER done with ANY of Google's services has been warehoused and is subject to subpoena.
    • by giorgiofr (887762)
      One could always do their searches and browsing without logging into Google first. Don't you think? I don't particularly like Google's personalized portal, so even though I have an account there I never use it. But even if I liked it, I wouldn't be doing searches and the like while logged in.
      Same goes for GMail.
      • One could always do their searches and browsing without logging into Google first.

        But then, still be careful not to do your "interesting" searches from an IP address that you've used before to check your adsense, or they still can tie a name on it.

        And be careful you never do searches about your name (or other identifiable info) from the same IP than you do your "interesting" searches.

        Oh, and even if you restart your DSL, beware of cookies!

        Or, alternatively, don't bother, and consider google the first p

    • Well, you can easily keep yourself safe. Tell your browser to delete all cookies on close, and whitelist the cookies you do need for added safety. Just make sure the places you do use aren't a part of google.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Pretty much any company plugged into anything logs everything. How else do people magically produce emails 4 years old in court cases? The ISPs record everything, who you shop with records everything, search engines record everything. It's kept for x months/years as needed.
    • by MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @10:48AM (#16044525)
      "Google's habit of logging EVERYTHING is starting to get a bit scary. EVERYTHING that a person has EVER done with ANY of Google's services has been warehoused and is subject to subpoena."

      You know what cracks me up? A number of times over the last year, I've heard people brag about how much they love Google because they 'do no evil'. They've even gone as far as to state that they plan on trusting Google until they give them reason to do otherwise. (These comments were always modded up, to boot.) I imagine lots of these people use a GMail account... which they log in with using their browser. So, while they're logged in to GMail, they use Google to browse. The potential here is that they can trace back your searches and tie them to your login. Who needs to log IP addresses when they can identify you that way?

      So why does this crack me up? By the time Google does do something 'evil', they've already handed a lot of personal goodies over to Google. Oops...

      I do hope I'm wrong, though. I'd like it pointed out if I am. (you see, I like Google as well, and I use Gmail...) I'd feel a lot more comfortable if GMail had stuck to its own domain instead of using mail.google.com.
      • by Everyman (197621)
        Perhaps I'm mistaken, but you seem to be suggesting that you have to be logged into Gmail while browsing their search engine at the same time. This is not true, unless you are in the habit of deleting your cookies constantly. Google uses the same main cookie with a unique ID in it across all of their *.google.com services. You don't have to be logged into Gmail. They know who you are even when you are logged out of Gmail.
    • I'm sure it's much too late for Google to do this, but there's a huge vacuum in the market for a new company to offer similar services but with strong privacy protections. To be worth a flip, such services would need to use technological means to secure users' privacy; strong policy alone is insufficient.

      Data warehousing has obvious benefits to me as a user. I like having my mail archive on a server where it's accessible from anywhere. I like having personalized search results, and having personalized plug
      • by Secrity (742221)
        Gmail is TRULY scary to me.

        It's not the personalization data that is necessarily a problem, a person can identify themselves simply as a nym. The problem comes in when searches and all of the other information is warehoused and can be tied together along originating IP addresses, cookies, email, and nyms.
        • Exactly. That is the kind of data that either needs to be discarded, or it needs to be stored in such a form that it can only be retrieved via a secret key known only to the user. Distributing data storage across multiple organizations (so that no single entity has enough data to reconstruct the original) might help facilitate this. Making the system secure is a daunting enough task; making it secure *and* responsive will take some collaborative genius.

          I really hope someone is up to the task though; any gua
  • Legal and privacy experts said that Google had no choice but to comply with the court order. 'From the law enforcement perspective, if the records are in the possession of the business, the business can be compelled to produce them,' said Marc Rotenberg, executive director of the Washington-based Electronic Privacy Information Center."

    That may be true of a typical business, but Google is not a typical business. Google can ignore the edicts of any government except America and China. What is Brazil going

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by shystershep (643874) *
      I'm afraid Google is not as invincible (and therefore somehow to blame for this) as everyone here seems to want to believe. The fact is, a judgment in a court in Brazil can be registered with a court in the US and enforced just like it was handed down by a US court (based on various international treaties and subject to all kinds of exceptions, of course). Even if that weren't the case, they could simply sue Google in a US court directly.

      So, no, Google cannot just ignore the laws of countries in which it

      • Actually, the United States is not a member to any international, multilateral, or bilateral treaties on the recognition of foreign judgments (it is on recognition of arbitral awards - the Geneva Convention). That isn't to say you can't enforce foreign awards, but it will be based upon domestic law and not treaty law. See http://travel.state.gov/law/info/judicial/judicial _691.html/ [state.gov]. What the domestic law is, I am not sure and don't have time to research.
        • You're right - shouldn't have assumed it was treaty based. In fact, it appears to be strictly common law, based on the principle of comity. See, e.g., Hilton v. Guyot, 159 US 113, 40 L ed 95, 16 S Ct 139 (1895) (enforcing on the basis of comity, but only where there is reciprocity).
        • Actually, the United States is not a member to any international, multilateral, or bilateral treaties on the recognition of foreign judgments (it is on recognition of arbitral awards - the Geneva Convention). That isn't to say you can't enforce foreign awards, but it will be based upon domestic law and not treaty law. See http://travel.state.gov/law/info/judicial/judicial [state.gov] _691.html/ [state.gov]. What the domestic law is, I am not sure and don't have time to research.

          It may not be the law you're thinking

    • by kusanagi374 (776658) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @09:50AM (#16044127)
      I'd love to see them get re-elected after pulling that little stunt.

      Yes, let us remember that it's a presidential election year in Brazil, and anything goes, especially for companies interested in little advantages. Plus, Google was being scalded alive by the local media. And, like I heard once: "a polemical headline exists as a bargain for a even more polemical request".
    • That may be true of a typical business, but Google is not a typical business. Google can ignore the edicts of any government except America and China. What is Brazil going to do, block all national traffic to Google's websites? I'd love to see them get re-elected after pulling that little stunt.

      Wrong, as long as Google, or anyone else has a physical presence in Brazil or anywhere else they have to obey the laws there.

      Falcon
  • No Evil. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by OriginalSin (858148)
    "Don't be Evil" was supposed to be the motto of the company. When they stood up to the Bush administration in court and defended it's user searches, I applauded them. Not because they were defending the search data, not because they were defending the people that made the searches, but rather because they were defending the end users *right* to make the search in the first place. Yet, in past months, my view of Google has started to change. Headlines like the one in which their CEO defended their policy of
    • "Who knows? Maybe at somepoint some whacked law maker will make a twinkie illegal, and those searches that you made so that you could distill your own will be akin to taking a walk on the Dark Side."

      Ease up on the distilled twinkies and RTFA.
    • I'm not defending the bad guys in any way here

      My understanding is that the groups in question were little more subtle than "Hey guys, let's get together at 5pm tonight and go kill some gays" or worse still "Hey, that sucker we killed at 5pm is one less gay in the world!".

      The Brazilian police were, not surprisingly, rather pissed off that criminals could communicate in anonymity like this, which was having a very real impact on the Brazilian communities those gangs operated in. If Google did not hand ove

  • by newhoggy (672061) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @09:47AM (#16044109)
    Google was right to comply with the court order to hand over information it had collected provided it was very specific and constitutional. We shouldn't expect corporations to be in the business breaking the law.

    However, Google was in the wrong for collecting identifying information in the first place. That is where my gripe is. They should be using technical measures to filter out identifying information before it reaches their database. That might include hashing IP addresses for instance so that equality comparisons can be made - but the original IP address rendered unobtainable.

    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      I live in Brazil and have been following this for a couple of weeks.
      Here's what is happening:

      - The brazilian law does not allow promotion of rage.
      - There is a google office down here.
      - This office sells ads to brazilian compannies - remember: 75% of Orkut users live here.
      - Since that google office is a brazilian branch of the google companny, it is subject to brazilian laws.
      - The brazilian law requires that any companny in Brazil report such cases.

      Then, the investigators requested the info from the Brazilia
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by cursorx (954743)
        - The brazilian law does not allow promotion of rage. This case is not only about hate speech laws. There's a lot of other stuff going on, and what bothers authorities, primarily, are drug and child porn related crimes.
  • by MikeRT (947531) on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @09:51AM (#16044137) Homepage
    I was thinking about this general issue last night and realized the great irony that Brazil and "enlightened" Europe would have to outlaw a lot of South Park episodes because they would offend the sensibilities of some group, typically homosexuals. I'm entirely unimpressed with these countries and their "progressiveness" that says that throwing around human sexuality is ok, but saying offensive things is not.

    Oh don't even start that bullshit about majorities versus minorities. The minorities are just as bad as the majorities. I've met just as many gays that instantly assume I'm going to want to stone them to death because I'm technically a fundamentalist, as I have met pseudo-Christians who would probably join a mob to stone them. I'm an asshole, they're an asshole. EVERYONE'S AN ASSHOLE on these issues at some point!

    You know what breeds hate and resentment? Empowering people to turn subjective feelings into a legal weapon. You instantly empower a hate group the moment you ban it. I bet the KKK would grow 50-100% every year if it were outlawed. It's just a way for societies to brush their issues under the national carpet and pretend that all is well.

    Well guess what?! It isn't! All manner of bigotry is rampant around the world and the force of law is not going to change hearts. Law has been used to smooth these things over time and again in the past and it **always** fails. The only thing that changes bigotry into love is a spiritual rebirth and that is something that cannot be legislated.
    • I'm entirely unimpressed with these countries and their "progressiveness" that says that throwing around human sexuality is ok, but saying offensive things is not.

      The problem is that discrimination may also happen to those who don't flaunt it, and even to those that are trying to hide it. Or worse: to those that only appear to be of a certain orientation without actually being.

      I'm an asshole,

      Don't advertise that too loudly if you don't actually enjoy it, he!

    • by inerte (452992)
      You don't get it. This isn't against free speech. There are actual postings on Orkut's communites saying "let's beat the crap of that black boy after school on 01/29", and you know what? The black boy is now at the hospital.

      Would you deny that there's a chance that whoever posted that on Orkut did the actual beating? What if it was your son that is hospitalized?
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by junglee_iitk (651040)
      My 2 cents:

      Europe doesn't says that throwing around human sexuality is ok, but saying offensive things is not. It says that even considering something like colour or number of people in a community for anything other than statistics is retarded; and that people should rather have fun. I don't think that is bad.
      • by RexRhino (769423)
        Absolutly not. Europe says that the government needs the power to censor speech and punish political crimes, because that power is nessicary in order to stop "hate". Europe doesn't have laws against hate, Europe has laws against free speech and justifies those laws against free speech by saying that they are nessicary to stop hate.

        If the intention is to stop acts of violence and discrimination, then the solution is quite simple: Outlaw acts of violence and discrimination.

        Most governments desperatly want to
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      I think you're over simplifying the issue here. Hate speech isn't something that hurts someone's feelings, its something that incites someone to commit a crime.

      "I hate niggers" is not hate speech. "black people deserve to be lynched" is hate speech. Do you see the difference there? Its not the words you use, its that you're encouraging racial violence.

      If you find homosexuals disgusting, its fine for you to say so. But when you start talking about committing a violent act you're crossing a line.

      You ca

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by bogado (25959)

      Oh don't even start that bullshit about majorities versus minorities. The minorities are just as bad as the majorities. I've met just as many gays that instantly assume I'm going to want to stone them to death because I'm technically a fundamentalist, as I have met pseudo-Christians who would probably join a mob to stone them. I'm an asshole, they're an asshole. EVERYONE'S AN ASSHOLE on these issues at some point!

      I agree, there are assholes in all groups, but there is a difference between what is happening

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by xnderxnder (626189)

      I was thinking about this general issue last night and realized the great irony that Brazil and "enlightened" Europe would have to outlaw a lot of South Park episodes because they would offend the sensibilities of some group, typically homosexuals. I'm entirely unimpressed with these countries and their "progressiveness" that says that throwing around human sexuality is ok, but saying offensive things is not.


      Nice - you jumped right to the "homosexual agenda" in the first sentence. Watch out, or they'll get
  • We all need heroes (Score:5, Insightful)

    by grasshoppa (657393) <skennedy@nOspaM.tpno-co.org> on Tuesday September 05, 2006 @10:08AM (#16044254) Homepage
    But google is not it. Seriously, why would anybody put any corporation up on a pedestal?

    Google will do what's best for google. End of story. If that means digging in their heels because a legal request is over reaching and would comprimise some aspect of their operations, so be it. If, in another case, it means they hand over the data, that's fair too.

    You want a hero? Go hug a firefighter, or a police officer. Or a doctor, or a vet. Not a corporation.
    • without permission. You may get sued for assault.
  • How can any of you seriously expect Google to take a stand and not turn over information about a guy trading child porn on Orkut?
    This is not some questionable case where the person is a political dissident, or something. They have records of this person's account, trading child porn. They want to know who he is.

    Do you honestly think there is any sane way to take a stand on this issue and not look like a complete monster?
    If they don't turn over the information, people will say they are protecting child moles
  • I maintain it'd have been much easier to get this information by having someone actually add the suspect as a friend on orkut and then communicating with them to get their personal information - after a court order so its not entrapment. So the logs that Brazilian law enforcement wants are very limited but the point was this could have been avoided all together.

    Google needs to take a good long look at what information it collects and how it matches up your google account information to your google searches
  • This is just another reason to behave on the web as if everyone knows who you are and what you are doing. As long as companies like Google, your ISP, and thousands of other players, are logging your login ids and search habits via cookies, or your IP address, governments have few barriers to finding out who you are. So while there are techniques that the technically knowledgeable can use to cover some of their tracks, unless you have a price on your head, it's ultimately not worth the effort. Sometimes the
  • This is what happens when Political Correctness becomes a matter of law.

    Political Correctness is nothing more than totalitarianism in the world of ideas. What's worse is that it is almost transparently so, making its presence in a supposedly free society all the more puzzling and maddening. Those who promote it are quite simply intellectually bankrupt.

    The best discription of political correctness I know of comes from Theodore Dalyrimple:

    "Political correctness is communist propaganda writ small. In my stud
  • I believe we are entering the end of the "Age of Anonymity".

    It has always been known, at least among the geeks, that we never really /were/ anonymous on the 'net - anyone with sufficient interest and motiviation can eventually track someone down.

    But for the last 10 or more years it really hasn't been an issue. Online users have been largely "under the radar" in terms of society, commerce, and justice, unless you really went out of your way to draw attention to yourself.

    But now that the Internet has become
  • One way is "Google extends olive branch". Another way would be "after some arm-twisting, Google finally gave up".

    It is aaall spinning, dudes and dudettes, it is aaaall about spinning.
  • But your history is stored forever, making sure that evenutally you will become a criminal and have the man come visit you.

    Great precident we have here. Grrr
  • Recently, there was an article here about a website that was trying to incite people to attack researchers using animal models. The general consensus here (if I may summarise) was that they shared responsibility for vigilante attacks, although they disclaimed it. This is a summary I agree with.

    I reckon this is a very difficult issue.. should people be allowed to incite violence and hatred (be it religious or homophobic, racist, etc) under the guise of 'free-speech'? Personally I think free speech is very im
  • When Google gives in to a government notice to give up information on a user, the Slashdot community sympathises with them.
    When Yahoo gives in to a government notice to give up information on a user, the Slashdot community gets its panties in a twist.

    Why the double standard?

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