But there is a separate US-Hong Kong extradition treaty. Yeah. Hong Kong is weird. http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/71600.pdf
Did I say otherwise?
You mean like elevated temperatures, arid conditions, or being underwater?
Yeah. The problem is that, to the extent that DOJ reacts quickly to the emergence of new technologies (and it does) then it has the ability to shape perceptions of what is and is not private through proclamations like this.
If DOJ (and, to be fair, certain private actors) had treated email like private papers in the first place, different expectations might have evolved, no?
No, leave the suicides in. 90% of people who attempt suicide by firearm die on their first attempt. People who attempt suicide by other means almost always fail (most try yo use drugs; 97% survive). And after a failed attempt, only a small minority of people attempt again. So, no. If those 20,000 people didn't have access to firearms, the very large majority may have tried to kill themselves by another means, would have failed, never tried again )or tried and failed again), and be alive today.
Yeah, could be. Although I think the main thing to be outraged about is that there could be direct liability for this kind of behavior. Conspiracy liability just adds to the crazy.
What part of the law are you looking at?
Conspiracy is not "just talking about." You have to make an overt act in furtherance of the conspiracy. It's a tricky area of law (and one I don't much care for) and some statements, under some circumstances, might constitute overt acts, but it's safe to say that "just talking about breaking the terms of service" isn't enough, without more. And in this respect CFAA is really no different from any other law. Of course, if the law is bad, conspiracy liability for breaking it is even worse. But throwing around a lot of half truths about conspiracy liability really won't shed much light on anything, I don't think.
Well...they're not as wrong as you'd think. The law criminalizes "exceeding authorized access" which has been construed to mean "violating the TOS" if it
(I) involves information that exceeds $5,000 in value;
(II) was committed for purposes of obtaining sensitive or non-public information of an entity or another individual (including such information in the possession of a third party), including medical records, wills, diaries, private correspondence, financial records, photographs of a sensitive or private nature, trade secrets, or sensitive or non-public commercial business information;
(III) was committed in furtherance of any criminal act in violation United States or of any State, unless such state violation would be based solely on the obtaining of information without authorization or in excess of authorization; or
(IV) involves information obtained from a computer used by or for a government entity;
I think TFA might be wrong that this covers violating the TOS of news sites -- it would be a stretch (but not impossible) to say that online news falls into any of these categories. But it could cover lots of other online services with pretty disturbing results. (Think: lying about your age on an online dating site.)
Well, it doesn't sound like you've looked at TFA too closely. It just points out that some news sites happen to have provisions in their TOSs that (purport to) restrict access to people over a certain age. The new draft CFAA would apparently make it a crime to violate those terms.
This is a stupid, unjust law, but I think it's probably not the product of a dastardly conspiracy to keep the public away from the news.
I don't know! Slashdot what have you done to us!?
Haha. An interesting -- and appreciated -- distinction. In this case, though, I think I'm right. I've never heard any argument that Swartz's case was uncertain due to ambiguity in the statute. Rather, the outrage comes from the fact that it was enforced at all, particularly in view of how rarely CFAA violations are prosecuted.
That is an excellent point. Thanks.
You misspelled analogy, but go on...
I have no idea what you're referring to.
I don't see how references to Nazi Germany invite you to miss it
Well, in my experience, comparing anything to Nazi Germany is a bad idea because people tend to think that you're making a comparison to the Nazis, on the merits.
Are you saying that no matter how immoral the law then people should nevertheless enforce and obey it?
If you read the words that I wrote, it is obvious that my answer to this is "no." Though perhaps I could have staved off the faux-misunderstanding if I had said "absolutely free" instead of just "free."
They certainly do have the discretion to decide whether prosecuting someone is in the public interest. And enforcing an imoral law certainly is not.
I thought we were arguing about what level of discretion they should have. As a legal matter it is certainly true that nobody from outside the Executive can make a prosecutor prosecute anyone. (With a few oddball exceptions like special prosecutors.)
Congratulations. He probably was.
This is a curious blend of perfect sense and total lunacy. I'll focus only on the crazy parts:
Hitler passed a law saying it was OK to round up and exterminate Jews
Huh. The CFAA is pretty bad, but I think this may be a stretch. Of course I assume that your point -- I want to be careful not to miss it, despite Godwin's invitation to do so -- is not that CFAA is much like the Nuremberg laws but that nobody should do simply what the laws allow uncritically. This is fair enough. Though the freedom one feels to personally review the laws for compatibility with one's own morals should probably bear some relation to the legitimacy of the government that enacted them. Here is one of the key points where -- at the risk of understatement -- the Nazi comparison breaks down. There's no point in having laws if everyone feels free to obey/enforce them or not solely according to the dictates of their own consciences. Some sort of balancing is in order between total subservience to the laws and your "so what that they passed it?" attitude.
Yes! Otherwise why have presecutors at all? Why not put everyone who is potentially guilty of a crime through the court system. We have humans in the loop for a reason: they can make judgments.
Well, for one thing, someone has to make an initial judgment about the likelihood of guilt, conduct an investigation, reassess the evidence post-investigation, and then bring the case to trial. These are the primary responsibilities of prosecutors, and none of them have anything to do with deciding which laws to enforce. This is not to say, though, that I think prosecutors should have no discretion at all. But the discretion that they have ought to be related to the prioritization of prosecutorial resources, not all-things-considered-judgments about the morality of laws. Of course, a personal assessment about the quality of the laws to be enforced might affect this prioritization.