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The Courts Government News

EFF Gets Meeting With Adobe 221

A number of people have sent in the e-mail that just crossed the free-sklyarov mailing list, that essentially states that the EFF and Adobe will have a meeting July 23rd. They are putting planned protest on hold. Click below for more information.Update: 07/20 11:25 PM by H : Thanks to all the folks who e-mailed me; the EFF is asking for the protests to be put on hold, but from what I've seen in my inbox, the protests are still being planned. To reinforce this: The EFF is asking to hold off on the protests, but planners are still moving ahead with this.

h-=-

Congratulations folks!

The pressure we all have put on Adobe has resulted in an agreement to meet with representatives from the Electronic Frontier Foundation on this Monday morning, July 23.

For that reason, EFF has decided to:

PUT THE JULY 23 PROTEST ON HOLD

Please help us act in good faith and postpone the protest until we have a chance to negotiate with Adobe.

Of course, we can always rekindle the protest if Adobe does not agree to withdraw their complaint to the US Department of Justice regarding Dmitry Sklyarov and to refuse to pursue further prosecutions under the DMCA for cases that should be prevented under fair use provisions of US copyright law.

And also, if the US Attorney's office insists on prosecuting Dmitry without a current complaint from Adobe, then we will continue protests directed at them rather than at Adobe.

If you still feel that you have to protest on Monday, you are of course free to do so. However, it may be a more effective use of our collective energies to act in a coordinated way to get Dmitry out of jail.

I am writing a media release to this effect as soon as I sent this email to you... wanted you all to know first.

Free Dmitry,

Will Doherty
Online Activist / Media Relations
Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)
Web http://www.eff.org

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

EFF Gets Meeting With Adobe, Protest Cancelled

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 20, 2001 @12:54PM (#71518)
    There's a world of difference between 'on hold' and 'cancelled'. Please fix the headline, Hemos. Protest also needs a 't' ;-).
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 20, 2001 @01:01PM (#71519)
    DO NOT CANCEL THE PROTESTS!

    What good is adobe going to do, they have 0 legal jurisdiction over getting Dmitry out of jail.

    This just goes to show that Adobe is afraid of the bad press.

    Adobe is going to welcome the EFF team, blow smoke up their asses for half of an hour and show them the door.

    DO NOT CANCEL THE PROTEST, once you stop this momentum you will not regain it.

    Maybe attention should be focused on the FBI, DOJ, and Congress for passing such a farcical law.

    Just who are EFF working for anyhow?
    Does anyone at EFF care to disclose just how much Adobe Donates to them anually?

    anonymous hero
    --
    This message secured by Quadruple Rot-56 encryption technology.
    Unauthorized decryption prohibited under the Digital Millenium Copyright Act.
    Violators will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
    *snicker*
  • There are days when I would think it _quite_ fitting for a guy like this to be seized and held without bail for writing spamming software.

    That is not the point, and he's not being imprisoned for that. He's being imprisoned for violating the DMCA by circumventing an access mechanism.

    I don't CARE how much of a scumbag the guy actually is- let him go and then arrest him again for being a spammer-helper if you consider that a more serious crime. The point is that he's being imprisoned for something that is not justifiable.

    Hell, man, I write open source digital audio software. One type of thing you can put into digital audio software is 'declicking', which is a perfectly normal operation that can be used to snuff out intermittent noise or record surface noise. Now, the RIAA labels are introducing a type of distortion into CDs intending that the CD players interpolate past this noise. That makes it, in that context, an access control mechanism.

    Are you seriously suggesting that it should be possible for some RIAA clown to have me dragged off in CHAINS for producing and supplying something that just happens to be able to circumvent an imaginary boundary they put up?

    Supposing someone uses ROT13 as an access control mechanism. If I write a de-ROT13er, does THAT justify my being hauled off and arrested?

    A man is IN JAIL now over this sort of circumventing. This is not a joke! I don't care how many spammers he's assisted, or how much he made. I report spammers to spamcop and release my work as GPLed free software, and buddy? I'm next.

    Re-think your attitude, please. You are not being helpful, and as near as I can tell, it's me, not you, next in line to be dragged off in chains. Easy for YOU to shrug it off- this time!

  • Broke US law? How? The company he works for might have broken the law, and even that is a big maybe. But how did Dimitri break US law? He wrote the program in Russia where he isn't subject to US law. He only talked about it here. How does that make him a criminal?

  • by Danse ( 1026 )

    Don't send a Russian to do an American's job. If anyone has to stand trial to help us rid ourselves of this onerous law, it should be an American citizen. As far as I'm concerned, we should do whatever is necessary to get Dimitri out of jail and back home to his family as soon as possible.

  • by Danse ( 1026 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @02:08PM (#71523)

    "He" didn't sell the software anywhere. The company he works for did. Why was he arrested? Even if they had reason to arrest someone, why was he the only one arrested? Why not the company CEO who was also there?

  • >I would put a Sun Tsu quote here but I am pretty busy right about now.

    There are five ways of attacking with fire.

    • The first is to burn soldiers in their camp;
    • the second is to burn stores;
    • the third is to burn baggage trains;
    • the fourth is to burn arsenals and magazines;
    • the fifth is to hurl dropping fire amongst the enemy.

    Have fun at the rally, kids!

  • Are you saying .de deserved fascism and Hitler?

    Of course: after all Hitler had strong support among Germans. He came to power legally. And that is exactly why I would never claim to love or be proud of Germany.

    Obviously, the severity of fascism cannot be compared to the injustice of the DMCA, but still: DMCA was enacted following the standard practices of the US; it is what the country wanted. The legislative process is how the country chooses to express its will. If the DMCA is wrong, then something must be wrong with the country.

    --

  • Well, most people reading this love the computer industry, but despise Microsoft, which is an integral part of it.

    But the computer industry did not vote MS into power.

    --

  • First of all, Hitler didn't run for office under the banner, "Gas the Jews and Gypsies! Annex France and Russia! Take over the world!"

    Even before he was elected, his views were very clear: he had laid them down in his book "Mein Kampf". It was clear that he wanted war to enlarge living space for the German race, and it was clear that he hated nobody as much as the "eternal jew". Everybody who voted for Hitler is personally responsible for what followed.

    that Congress or the Senate pass a law doesn't necessarily mean the citizens desire it.

    Again, something must be wrong with the country then, no? Either the country wills a wrong law, or it accepts a system which produces a wrong law.

    --

  • ... who has nothing to do with the DMCA.

    --

  • by AxelBoldt ( 1490 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @01:51PM (#71530) Homepage
    I love this country, I just hate the government that's running it.

    The country has the government it deserves.

    But really, isn't the government an important part of every country? How is it possible to love something and at the same time hate an integral part of it?

    --

  • by sphealey ( 2855 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @12:57PM (#71532)
    The EFF is staffed by some pretty canny people, so I wouldn't think they would be fooled too easily. But this sounds like a sop being thrown out by Adobe to quiet things down until attention moves elsewhere, after which the process will start up again.

    sPh
  • Adobe has no authority or ability to get Sklyarov out of prison. He is charged with a crime, charged by the United States, and Adobe has no say in whether or not he goes to prison for it. The U.S. can order Adobe to testify at trial and Adobe cannot refuse.

    It's silly to cancel the protest. Adobe could beg the U.S. Attorney to release Sklyarov and nothing would happen. Sklyarov has now been strip-searched a dozen times or more as he is schlepped between various facilities. He's in prison, facing five years behind bars with no possibility of parole (because he would be deemed a flight risk if paroled, obviously).

    Protest on.
  • Many or most of these protests were organized by volunteers independent of the EFF. The EFF announced the protests to be postponed without consulting any of the people who had put much time and effort into this. They don't speak for everyone!

    The protests have a lot of momentum behind them. What did the EFF get in exchange for cancelling them? Agreeing to talks? There's no guarantee that anything will change. EFF has been tricked by Adboe PR.
  • by dmarti ( 6587 ) <dmarti@zgp.org> on Friday July 20, 2001 @01:42PM (#71537) Homepage

    Hi, I'm Don Marti, main contact person for the San Jose event.

    We will be meeting as planned at the snake sculpture, in downtown San Jose at the corner of S. Market St. and W. San Carlos St., at 11:00 AM.

    From there we can march on Adobe or go home as the situation requires.

    I would put a Sun Tsu quote here but I am pretty busy right about now.

  • I'd guess it's pretty important to him. If the rafter dude doesn't think that's important, maybe that's the problem, and maybe he ought to stew in jail for a while far away from home.

    --
  • If you're actually following the free-sklyarov list, you'll note that person after person has been writing to reject the idea of putting off the protests. If that's any indication, then they will go on as planned, though perhaps without the EFF. I can understand why the EFF chose to ask for the postponement, though I bet they're secretly hoping the protests will occur anyway.

    --Jim
  • But this is now the 2nd time Adobe has demonstrated rational thought, and worked out their differences normally without resorting to lawsuits or extreme intimidation.

    I prefer to think of it as the second time in a week Adobe has stepped way across the line and gotten called on it. Looks like a pattern.
    --

  • Except that the masses HAVE united. The EFF may have taken a position orthoganal to "the masses" in this one, possibly out of cluelessness [unlikely], possibly out of the knowledge that they could in fact make the concession knowing that the masses would do what they were planning to do and the EFF "postponement request" would have no effect (allowing them to say "Hey, we tried, but you can see this is getting very emotional out there..."), etc.

    What is important in this is NOT "why did they do it", but the distinction that "EFF is saying its postponed, but the masses have already said otherwise."

  • by Dredd13 ( 14750 ) <dredd@megacity.org> on Friday July 20, 2001 @12:56PM (#71550) Homepage
    Despite EFF's requests, the majority of the protest participants believe that EFF is caving too quickly. Adobe has agreed "to talk to the EFF" Monday morning, but solely on the grounds that the EFF "calls off the dogs" so to speak.

    Most of us feel that this is proof positive that the effectiveness of the protests is working, and that they must continue to operate under a deadline of Monday.

    EFF folks were quoted as saying that (paraphrased) "Adobe couldn't get the right people in the room" over the weekend. There's nowhere on the planet they couldn't get the right people into the room if they wanted to, so they obviously value "something else" (whether its a business deal or someone's tee-time) more than they value solving this dilemma they're in.

    Nothing stops until that guy is on a jet in international airspace departing the US a free man.

    The irony -- to DEPART the US to become a Free Man. *sigh*

  • Yeah, but you aren't CEO of a billion dollar company. I'm sure Adobe could get anybody anywhere if they wanted to.

    -m

  • Having attended this meeting, I can say the Denver protesters are going to change the emphasis of the protest slightly. Because Adobe is willing to talk to the EFF, we're willing to give them the benefit of the doubt, so instead of protesting Adobe, we're protesting against the DMCA at the Denver Federal Courthouse, and protesting against the FBI & the Justice Department for jailing Sklyarov for violating the DMCA.

  • I don't see how talking about ANYTHING can be illegal - I think that much is in the constitution. Now, I was not at the conference, but I don't believe he was passing free copies of this program or source code for it (the two actions if that had happen could possibly be construed as being illegal).
  • by avdp ( 22065 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @01:57PM (#71561)
    Did not break US law because it did not happen in the US and the US has no jurisdiction over what a Russian citizen does in Russia. And considering that what he did in Russia is not even illegal there, there really truly is something wrong with this scenario.

    To me this is like visiting China and getting arrested because they've learned (in one way or another) that you surfed the internet for porn while you were at home...

    And giving a talk about something at a conference is and has always been protected by free speech.
  • The country has the government it deserves.

    The problem with that statement is that it takes the premise that this country's citizens elect the government officials and adds several untrue assumptions:

    1. The officials elected are freely chosen by the citizens.
    2. The officials enact policy based on the wishes of the citizens that elected them.
    3. The entire country participates in the election process.

    The problem with (1) is that citizens don't get to pick whomever they want. Instead, someone else chooses the set of candidates from which citizens must pick. In every presidential election I've been old enough to follow, I would never have chosen any of the candidates to begin with, let alone pick one for president.

    One has to look no further than the list of compaign contributors for the candidates to see how laughable (2) is. In the 1999/2000 California election cycle, energy companies alone made over $17 million in campaign contributions. Translation: they purchased the support of every candidate except ONE. Thus whomever wins, the energy corporations know that their wishes will be followed out of debt.

    The U.S. has such a dismal voting turnout, so (3) is out. You may want to blame the voters, which is partially reasonable, but realize that many don't participate because they know that (1) and (2) mean they will have little impact.

    There is hope, however. Right now, nearly 100,000 protesters are demonstrating at the G8 Summit [indymedia.org] in Genoa, Italy. People are starting to realize that they don't have to vote to make their opinions heard. In fact, it is often more effective to take to the streets.

    It's really quite basic. Corporations' number one rule is to maximize profit for the shareholders. If they can "invest" a couple hundred thousand greasing the palms of congressman to ensure those "public servants" will enact laws beneficial to the corporations, that's what they *must* do. Sure, it's effectively bribery, and thus illegal, but they're following the rules of capitalism, not ethics or democracy.

    It's going to take a lot of work to change the way our system works. And just because it isn't changing fast enough, it doesn't mean the people in the country somehow deserve the shit. Just as East Timorese hardly deserve the twenty-five years of genocide they've suffered at the hands of the Indonesian military with U.S. support (money, weapons and training), against congress's ruling.

    Peace PatientZero

  • by delmoi ( 26744 )
    How is threatening to sue people for money they don't have, and getting people in jail 'rational thought'?

    Getting someone arrested over breaking your l33t-ass 'rot-13' encryption is not the pinnacle of rational thought. Just because Adobe backs down doesn't make them bad guys.
  • I would say that Slashdot just made a mistake. But... There's another POV:

    Slashdot and EFF are the 'legitimate' and publicly accepted arms of the lunatic fringe. The people organizing the protest are the armed combatants and the nuts who give the EFF and /. their voice.

    I might be looking at getting a serious down-modding, but it seems similar to the Sin Fein (sorry for butchering the spelling) and the IRA. Or similar splits amongst various Muslim groups.

    One group comes to the table and talks. The other group beats on the windows and burns cars outside.

    I find myself a fence-sitter. I was prepared to take off of work Monday had their been a protest in Wash. DC or Richmond, but I might very well have backed down.

    My real concern is that the Monday protest would have likely gathered numbers due to the emotions involved. By delaying it, even if only for a few days, emotions will cool (especially other fencesitters, as well as those in the totally rational front) and the turnout will likely be less. The upshot is that more time=more chance to get the word out.

    So, without playing devil's advocate: I think /. made a slight mistake in word usage (given their overall poor grammar, this is no surprise). But it can also be viewed as one member of one of the parts of the movement trying to cool down some hot heads. Unfortunately, rather than people listening to protesters, they are beating the shit out of them, and making efforts to conduct their meetings and so forth without an opportunity for protest at all. (The virtual WTO summit ideas, ie)

  • Isn't that why the EFF is pursuing the Felten case [slashdot.org]?
  • But the computer industry did not vote MS into power.

    Technically, you're correct, since there are no explicit elections for "evil bastard" per se. But quite a few members of the computer industry voluntarily work for Microsoft and even more develop products that run on, work with, fix up or otherwise use Microsoft products.

    If the majority of voters in the US really wanted to "thow the bums out" at any cost, it could be done. Similarly, if every geek in the industry really wanted to kill M$ at any cost, it could be done.
  • To have the DMCA overturned, wouldn't it be better to have him fully stand trial to get the law broken ?

    Not that I like the idea of making a martyr, especially one with a family to support.

  • So if a company sells software deemed illegal you should be able to arrest any employee of that company when they step on US soil?

    I just want to clarify your point. You seem to be saying that employees of companies should be arrested if their company sells an illegal product.

    FYI. He is an employee of the company which DOES NOT SELL IN THE US.
  • Clinton's asprin fiasco don't hold a candle to murdering 100,000 iraqies by bush (not to mention panamenians).
  • Doesn't the FBI have a duty to see weather or not a crime has actually been committed? I have tried to find a crime in this case but I can't.
  • HE DID NOT BREAK ANY LAW. I'll say it again HE DID NOT BREAK ANY LAW. Maybe the company he works for did (not!) but you can't just arrest employees of criminal companies can you?

    Now wait a minute MS is found guilty of crimes and lots of people work for MS. WOW let's arrest them all!
  • If it's OK to arrest employees for the conduct of the companies they work for then we should start arresting Microsoft employees. After all Microsoft has been found guilty of breaking laws too.
  • For future reference to all Americans.

    The proper response to
    "This is the FBI, we have you surrounded, Come out with your hands up"
    is MOST DEFINATELY NOT
    "come and get me mutherfuckers I have guns and am not afraid to use them"
    especially if your wife and kid are in the house.

    BTW hiding behind his wife and kids was a cowardly act. He should have let them go and faced the FBI alone like a real man at least he would have died a defiant death. Instead he spends his days whining about the evil "guvmit" and the "god-damned niggers and jews".

  • Intruding actual facts into the wooly cottonbrains of an american sheep hanging out at slashdot will get you modded down. Dontcha know that by now?
  • His son was not shot because of what he believed. Like I said if your response to "come out with your hand up" is "fuck you motherfuckers come get me" you should expect to die. Too bad he did not have the balls to send his wife and kid out and face the govt by hinself. He hid behind his wife and kids, told the govt to come and get him, and now whines that his kid got shot. Well duh!. That's what happens to cowards who use their wife and kids as shields.

    Nelson Mandela got jailed for decades and tortured for his beliefs but he came out to lead his country. Randy Weaver would not made it a day in a south African Prison we would have broken like a cracker because he is a coward and spineless whiner.
    If you are not willing to be arrested for your beliefs, jailed for your beliefs or die for your beliefs then shut the fuck up.
  • Your description of the events are way off base. Even the very biased Amnesty report states
    "In 1995 the government paid $3.1m in settlement of a wrongful death claim to the family of a white separatist whose wife and son were shot dead by FBI sharpshooters during a siege in Idaho in 1992"

    Notice the word "siege". The FBI agent didn't just walk up to them and shoot them without talking to them. It was a protracted "siege" anytime during which Randy could have...

    a) Sent his wife and kids out.
    b) surrendered
    c) Shot himself (and perhaps his family too)
    d) Come out firing taking out a few evil FBI agents and dying in a blaze of glory.

    Instead he chose to basically hold his wife and kid hostage. He knew that the FBI would not charge in if women and children were in the house. The fact remains.
    He was not willing to be arrested for his beliefs.
    He was not willing to be jailed for his beliefs.
    He was not willing to die for his beliefs.
    He is only willing to whine about his beliefs to the right wing fanatics on talk radio.
  • by rjh ( 40933 )
    • Strip searches.

      While body-cavity searches are sometimes necessary for the safety of the wardens and other prisoners, the Supreme Court has recognized that it's extraordinarily demeaning conduct. Dmitry is, as of this moment, an innocent man. The jailers are aware of that, as is the US Attorney, as is Dmitry's attorney, as is everyone else.

      Convicts lose a great deal of their civil liberties. Innocent people, infinitely less so. Jail isn't pleasant, but it's a helluva lot more pleasant to be a presumed-innocent individual awaiting trial than a convict.

    • No possibility of parole

      Ever since sentencing reform in the early '80s ('84, I think), there has been no parole anywhere in the Federal system. When you get convicted of a Federal offense, such as the DMCA, you don't get parole. If the judge says you do five years, well, guess what--you do five years.

    • Prison conditions

      Since Dmitry is a nonviolent offender, he would be a prime candidate for Club Fed treatment (minimum security facility, perks, etc.). However, there's a Bureau of Prisons directive in effect which says that BuPris considers all aliens to be flight risks. As such, BuPris categorically refuses to house aliens in minimum-security facilities. Real prison, real time, real lockup, alongside real serious offenders.
    If you actually knew a damn thing about the way the system works, you'd have already known that the two things you're harping about aren't problems at all, and the biggest problem Dmitry faces (if convicted) is one that you were totally ignorant of.

    No, I'm not a lawyer. I'm a guy who does his research. I'd hope that Slashdot's editorial staff would do theirs, too.
  • by Flounder ( 42112 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @12:54PM (#71587)
    I'm still pissed that the FBI, the frigging armed police of the government, arrested him based solely on the complaint of Adobe.

    He's a frigging citizen of another country, and the software he wrote is not bound by the DMCA. IANAL, but it seems to me that the FBI has gotten themselves in a ton of hot water.

    My question is, why hasn't the Russian Consulate raised a stink about this? Or, have they, and the DOJ is keeping it all hush hush?

  • Heck, don't expect anything short of a diplomatic incident to change the FBI's mind... they're officers of the law, who's job it is to gather cases against those who break the law.
    You are completely right on that statement.

    Through chance, one of my old coworkers was an ex-FBI agent who had been investigating Phil Zimmerman over the PGP case. This lead to a really interesting conversation about the moral issues of the law and the case and technology in general (to include observations of how child molesters - an area she later became involved with - used PGP to hide evidense). I was intersted in her view and she was rather suprised and interested in the opinions and ideas the community had on the case.

    One of the final statements in the conversation was that, no matter where the moral issues were, the law was the law. Phil had broken it and the agents HAD him. She was actually a bit disappointed the case hadn't gone forward.

  • by _Sprocket_ ( 42527 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @01:27PM (#71589)
    Whether or not we agree with their reasoning, (and I do NOT), I hope the industry takes notice at how problems can be solved without resorting to bully tactics.
    Interesting observation. Lets extend this idea to a classical "bully" definition.

    I go around the school yard and threaten to beat up little kids unless they do what I want. By this rational, I'm not a bully until I actually hit someone. The agreement that the little kid gives me their milk money and in turn I won't put my fist in to their face - well, that's just rational thought.

  • Are you saying what I think you are saying?

    That Dimitri was the "clean room" RE specialist for developing the software for Elcomsoft?

    Under the DMCA, one is supposed to be allowed to reverse engineer, provided it is done in "clean room" fashion (ie, where there is a third party that describes how the device works to the party doing the building of the workalike device - such that those doing the developing never come into contact with the original device - thus "clean").

    What the hell is going on here? Is this true - or am I reading something into this here due to the broken english (nothing against you or anyone else whose first language isn't english, mind you - I just don't know if I am reading this correctly)...

    Worldcom [worldcom.com] - Generation Duh!
  • INAL, but as I understand it:

    There are two things he seems to be going up for. First is reverse engineering the algorithm. This is on shaky legal ground since he did not do it within the U.S. However Unsama Bin Laden (sp?) has been tried and convicted in abstencia for several of his attacks against U.S. targets, even though he has never been within the United States, and likely never will be. Now there is little similarily between reverse engineering an encryption algorithm and bombing embassies, but it still shows legal precident of trying someone for something they planned or did outside of the U.S. If he ever comes into the US, he will be arrested and jailed, and his next trial would be an appeal since he has technically had a trial.

    The other part is a little more firm. That is dissemating the information from the cracked algorithm. He could say I cracked this but I can't tell you how, and he would have been in a beter legal position because he did the actual reverse engineering in another country. He showed how to do it in Las Vegas, which is (the last time I checked) still in the U.S..

    All of this isn't to say that the DMCA isn't completely stupid and unconstitutional, particularly the part about the dissemination. That SHOULD come under freedom of speech, but it will likely take the supreme court to strike that down.

    Fortunatly (for now) the Supreme Court seems mostly immune to such things, perhaps because of the amount of money they make and not having to run for reelection all the time. I expect that to change some time soon though.

    The first 'violation' is a little more ambiguious as to it's constitutionality. Sure, it's stupid, but there are a lot of stupid laws that are constitutional.

    I think that the boycott of all such conventions and conferences would be a serious blow to the US DMCA supporters. Boycotts of the products would help too. Remember the best way to hurt a rich man is to take away his money.

  • Not quite. Germany's government was in a deadlock, so he was elected (or appointed by someone who was elected -- I can't remember) to restructure the government. A long-term totalitarian government was not what the German people had in mind.
    ------
  • by Dwonis ( 52652 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @05:42PM (#71594)
    You obviously don't understand ROT-13. From the Jargon File:

    rot13: /rot ther'teen/ [{Usenet}: from "rotate alphabet 13 places"], v. The simple Caesar-cypher encryption that replaces each English letter with the one 13 places forward or back along the alphabet, so that "The butler did it!" becomes "Gur ohgyre qvq vg!" Most {Usenet} news reading and posting programs include a rot13 feature. It is used to enclose the text in a sealed wrapper that the reader must choose to open - e.g. for posting things that might offend some readers, or {spoiler}s. A major advantage of rot13 over rot(N) for other N is that it is self-inverse, so the same code can be used for encoding and decoding. [{Jargon File}]

    In other words, I hereby forbid you under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, to decode, or distribute a device to decode, or distribute the decoded form of, the following copyrighted work, without prior written consent from myself:

    V guvax V'yy nccyl sbe n cngrag ba EBG-13.

    If you decode this, or sold a device that decodes this, you can be charged under U.S. criminal law. That kinda sucks, doesn't it?


    ------
  • >She was actually a bit disappointed the case hadn't gone forward.

    If you're still in contact with her, tell her that a least one guy on slashdot thinks she's a fascist bitch, and that our Republic is far better off with her out of the FBI.

    -jcr
  • >Can you think of a BETTER place for a facist bitch than the FBI?

    Sure!

    How about:

    1) China
    2) Afghanistan
    3) Iraq
    4) anywhere but a free country.

    -jcr
  • > I'm sorry, but did you just imply that the United States of America is a free country? The U.S. has been bombing Iraq and upholding illegal sanctions (The U.N. passed a resolution to stop the sanctions, we showed them the finger). These sanctions have caused the death by starvation, malnutrition and disease of 1.5 million citizens.

    When I describe the USA as a free country, I mean a country where the residents enjoy a large measure of personal liberty (e.g, our right to march in support of Dmitry in San Jose on Monday.) The US government's ill-advised policy of punishing the people of Iraq instead of simply putting a $500M reward on that asshole's head and letting the market do its work, does not substantially affect my liberty.

    So, while the US government, like all other governments continuously seeks to expand its power at the expense of my liberty, this is a country where we still have the means to tell a JBT to fuck off and back it up with force if necessary.

    -jcr
  • by corby ( 56462 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @01:03PM (#71601)
    I do not agree with Will's reasoning, but here is additional background information he supplied on the situation:

    Adobe only agreed to meet with us if we would put the Monday, July 23 protest on hold.

    We would like to believe that Adobe will be negotiating in earnest and it is not EFF's style to engage in punitive protests when there is hope of a negotiated solution.

    If some folks go ahead and protest and antagonize Adobe, that may escalate the situation, preclude Adobe withdrawing their complaint, and keep Dmitry in jail.

    I think should treat this as a partial victory... we have succeeded in getting to the table in a big way with Adobe! Let's use that leverage to get some concrete action. And if they don't budge, we can still protest. Those who offered the favors once hopefully did so because we have an important cause here, and will likely do so again.

    I am glad to hear everyone's comments about this and look forward to working together to get Dmitry out of jail and end further unfair DMCA prosecutions.

    Free Dmitry,

    Will Doherty
    Online Activist / Media Relations
    Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)
    Web http://www.eff.org
  • The US tries to uphold freedom within its own borders. It is only freedom in other countries that the US does not tolerate.
  • I don't know the reasoning of the EFF, but i guess, they want to go into the talks with adobe with as much options as possible. Once the protests happened it wouldn't make much sense to protest again (many people won't go twice, and the media will most likely not cover a second protest with the same intensity as the first one). So once the protests happened, repeating them is much less of a threat. Hence holding back the protests gives the EFF much more to bargain with.

    I think that's a perfectly valid way of reasoning, another is, to use the protests to heighten public awareness of the case and use the publicity of the case in the bargaining ("if you don't want any more egg on your face you better act in a sensible way now"). I think the second way of reasoning is a better longterm strategy, since adobe (and others) will then think twice before pulling similar stunts.

    There is another point to consider: The protests should be organized, some protesters with noone to explain to the media, what the issue is, will do no good. What's even worse, it will, as explained, reduce the impact of future protests. Hence i think the protesters should follow the EFFs decisions, since even if the decisions are bad (and it's disputable if they are), half of a protest is worse.
  • There are five ways of attacking with fire.

    The first is to burn soldiers in their camp;

    the second is to burn stores;

    the third is to burn baggage trains;

    the fourth is to burn arsenals and magazines;

    the fifth is to hurl dropping fire amongst the enemy.

    Have fun at the rally, kids!


    If that isn't "flamebait" I don't know what could be a worse pun.

  • How is it possible to love something and at the same time hate an integral part of it?

    Ever heard the song Anthem from the musical Chess? It may help to know the context. The Russian chess champion is defecting to the west, and he is asked by a journalist how he can leave his country. This is his reply. [geocities.com]

  • While Dimitry is certainly being treated unfairly, the criminal provisions of the DMCA cannot be thrown out as unconstitutional if it doesn't go to court.

    It sounds like you are advocating keeping someone in jail while the court system figures out that what he did wasn't a crime! The only acceptable course of action is for him to be released immediately.

    And for PR purposes, anything that gets him out of jail will allow us to cheer "FBI unable to enforce DMCA in Court".
  • by cananian ( 73735 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @01:36PM (#71615) Homepage
    See http://freesklyarov.org/boston [freesklyarov.org] for more info. Many other groups will still be protesting on Monday, as well. It's rather irresponsible of Slashdot to infer that the game's over!
  • If the right person is on a whitewater rafting vacation this weekend, then it's quite likely that they can't get him to talk to a bunch of EFF people. I believe in the EFF, but there's no way I'd break my weekend vacation to attend some meeting.
    --
    Lord Nimon
  • The whole thing with him being a foreign national adds a level of complexity that I'd rather a court already in over its head not have to consider. Far better that one of the cases currently being tried carry the issue to the Supreme Court.

    Unfortunately it seems (to me) as if the decss defense has become distracted with minutae and are not pursuing the case on purely first ammendment grounds. It seems to me that they'd have a much better chance if they'd ignore the crap the MPAA is spewing and hold on to the first ammendment issues like a rabid pit bull. The Felten defense seems to have a much better case for first ammendment violations but a slightly weaker platform from which to launch the challenge. The RIAA attack on Felten also has all the hallmarks of a SLAPP case, though, and I'm hoping that they go after the RIAA on those grounds too.

    Oh, Ahem. I am not a lawyer, but I play one on TV.

  • But Adobe was the one who filed the complaint in the first place. If they had not, would the FBI have become aware of Sklyarov at all?
  • Everyone keeps saying "He's Russian. What he does in Russia isn't our business." Now, I'm not saying I'm pro-DMCA, but the guy did sell the software through a U.S. company. If you're in another country, and you hire someone in this country to murder someone in the U.S., you're guilty of murder in the U.S.

    I'm not saying the guy should be in jail, I'm not saying that the law is just. I'm just saying that the FBI and the U.S. government do have authority in this case.

    That's, of course, if my facts are correct, but according to the story I read, the software was sold, or more correctly said, the money was collected in the U.S.

  • Russian law dictates that any Russian citizen has legal rights to one backup copy of any digital media he/she is sold. Dmitry's program was designed to allow Russians to exercise their legal right. Technically, these copy protection schemes are illegial in Russia. Oops. If I can brake it, it isn't encryption. It's obfuscation.
  • Why the HELL did I put 'brake?' It's break. B-R-E-A-K. I need sleep.
  • And adobe will spin the fact that the protests continue to point out that the 'hacker community' are a bunch of hippie anarchists who can't even hold up their end of the bargin, and explain how 'disappointed and saddened' they are that they had to cancel the talks because 'the hacker community just won't listen to reason, and can't understand why what Dmitry did is wrong.' Or in words that might hit a bit closer to home for a lot of people on this board: somebody set you up the bomb. All your PR are belong to Adobe. Or more to the point: j00 g07 0VVn3d!
  • Hell, I just finished reading Joe Halderman's Forever Peace, so I half expect Adobe to plant some ringers in some of the demonstrations to make sure things turn violent. :-)
  • By delaying it, even if only for a few days, emotions will cool

    This is very likely Adobe's tactic, get everyone to back off for a couple of days to cool off and on monday have a meaningless meeting with the EFF which accomplishes nothing. When the EFF tries to get another protest going, instead of hundreds showing up, maybe only 10 or 20. Probably not enough to get local coverage, let alone national new to pick it up.

    Jesus died for sombodies sins, but not mine.

  • STOP YELLING AT ME I'll say it again STOP YELLING AT ME.
    He is accused of breaking the law, that why he was arrested. If someone broke into your home, and you told the police who it was, wouldn't you want him arrested?
    It will be up to the courts to determine if he is guilty of the crime he is accused of commiting.
    If the programmers at MS where aware that what they personally where doing was illegal, then yes arrest them all. since MS crimes have to do with how it wielded its monopoly, it would be unreasonable to presume that the coders had any knowledge of the alledged crime, or that the intent of their work was for criminal use.
    If you not going to bother to try and under stand the law, even at a primitive level, then refrain from commenting on it.
  • "And also, if the US Attorney's office insists on prosecuting Dmitry without a current complaint from Adobe, then we will continue protests directed at them rather than at Adobe."

    Had Adobe not started this in the first place, the US Attorney's office wouldn't be involved. There'd have been no case.

    I will not accept Adobe's attitude, which seems to be, "I only chucked a cigarette butt, I didn't cause any drought which dried out the forest and made it burn so easily."

    If they drop their complaint but the US won't, Adobe will need to publicly apologise and actively support Dmitry's case. It won't be too hard to put a good spin on that anyway.

    woof.

  • Just because the official word from the EFF is to cancel the protests _does not mean they will be cancelled_. The mailing-list free-sklyarov is still full of talk about protesting on Monday, and nobody seems to be backing down.

    Join the list if you're still interested - remember, the gripe is with DMCA and the incarceration of Sklyarov more than it is a slam against Adobe. They were just dumb enough to be the first company to use their new-found powers.


    You are more than the sum of what you consume.


  • Orrin Hatch sponsored this bill.

    Yeah, maybe he got suckered, but it was his baby; he bears the primary responsibility. He must go. Maybe he can get a job afterwards with Adobe, or the MPAA.

    Until the DMCA is repealed, I will not spend one penny in the state of Utah, I will avoid patronizing any businesses based in Utah unless they take high-profile action against Orrin and/or the DMCA, and I *will* contribute substantially to the campaign funds of Orrin's opponents. I have already boycotted Adobe to the tune of $2000 so far this week, and I intend to continue until they publicly come down against the DMCA. It's not enough for them to just silently avoid using it, not now. It's too late for that.
  • I've found that a planned proest can be every bit as insightful and useful to one's cause as an unplanned proest. Most proests are in fact planned a good deal ahead of time.
  • Actually, this avoids (or rather postpones) the Final Constitutional DMCA Showdown. I can see various companies screaming hysterically to Adobe...

    "You IDIOTS! Do you want the DMCA repealed or what? Drop this lunacy right NOW! The least thing we need is a martyr! We can't, repeat, CAN'T let this go to the Supreme Court until we get the chance to replace a couple justices."

  • I'm still pissed that the FBI, the frigging armed police of the government, arrested him based solely on the complaint of Adobe.

    Uh, why else would the arrest him? If I get mugged, they'll try to arrest someone based on my complaint (unless an officer happens to witness the crime). If someone robs my apartment, it'll again take a complaint from me before anything happens.

    I do question whether arrest was the appropriate action in this case, given the non-violent nature of the "crime", but one could argue that he is a flight risk. However, I don't question that the proceedings in question should be set in motion by a complaint from the wronged party.

  • Adobe has no authority or ability to get Sklyarov out of prison.

    While Adobe has no direct authority, I don't think they're completely devoid of influence. It's hard to make a case when you've got the victim claiming, "Well, in retrospect, we don't think it was that bad." I could see the FBI pushing ahead in a case involving violence or where the public was at risk from the criminal, but this is more-or-less an economic/property crime. If Adobe backs down, it's my guess (and I admit that it's little more than a guess) that the FBI will do the same.

  • While Dimitry is certainly being treated unfairly, the criminal provisions of the DMCA cannot be thrown out as unconstitutional if it doesn't go to court.

    Yes. Definitely. This is the test case opponents need to get DMCA overturned!

    EFF should not cave in until that outcome is achieved! (Of course, this should not be used as an excuse to keep Dmitry in jail, or in the US.)

  • by sulli ( 195030 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @01:15PM (#71656) Journal
    Will is trying to negotiate in good faith with Adobe. Putting the protest on hold pending such discussion is appropriate. People need to be ready to resume at any moment, however, if Adobe is full of shit.
  • this is the last thing people need. This means the whole issue is going to blow over and be diffused, so that we dont get down to the real issues that are at stake (the DMCA).

    This way the whole thing will be forgotten. This was a chance for the community to alert the whole world to this illegal law.

  • But this is now the 2nd time [slashdot.org] Adobe has demonstrated rational thought, and worked out their differences normally without resorting to lawsuits or extreme intimidation.

    Whether or not we agree with their reasoning, (and I do NOT), I hope the industry takes notice at how problems can be solved without resorting to bully tactics.

  • Can you think of a BETTER place for a facist bitch than the FBI? I mean, if someone has natural tendancies to stick to the rules and enforce them even when they anger people, she's *exactly* the kind of person I'd like to see going after criminals.

    Just as long as she's not the judge who decides how harshly to treat the accused, and the jury's fair.
  • While it may seem as if Adobe is folding, don't expect it. The DMCA is the law of the land, and Adobe would be foolish not to do exploit it as best they can.

    If you want the DMCA gone, write your congressman, practice civil disobedience, and for Martin Luther King's sake, *take a case to court!*

    The GPL survives in legal limbo because it's never been tested in court--and this is because those would benefit most from going to court (those who's work revolves around the GPL) would rather settle than risk legal correction.

    Don't expect the same thing to work with the DMCA. Heck, don't expect anything short of a diplomatic incident to change the FBI's mind... they're officers of the law, who's job it is to gather cases against those who break the law.

    (Yes, sometimes the FBI investigates innocents... but it happens. I've been investigated, you've probably been investigated... you might even have been arrested for a crime you didn't commit. Guess what? That's how the law works.)

    Remember: those who want the GPL ambiguous and the DMCA unrepealed have deep pockets, and aren't afraid of the cost of a lawsuit. If we want these these things changed, we need to go to court.
  • The country has the government it deserves.

    But really, isn't the government an important part of every country? How is it possible to love something and at the same time hate an integral part of it?


    Dude, you might want to hold off a bit, seeing as how your government likes to censor speech any time it has the word Nazi or Swastika in it. Not to mention banning the sale of art & entertainment that it deems "too violent."
  • I just bought a copy of the MacGIMP CD-ROM [macgimp.com]. This supports the one major competitor for Photoshop. I hope to make this a permanent transition. Adobe's gone too far for me.
    Now, if we could start raising a bounty to fund development of CMKY color support for GIMP. ...
  • by mojo-raisin ( 223411 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @02:37PM (#71678)
    I completely agree. This company is responible for holding a man hostage. Their executives should be meeting with the EFF now. Forcing Dmitri to spend a weekend in jail for this shows no good will by Adobe.

    Protest ON!
  • A search of http://www.government.gov.ru/ for sklyarov returns 0 results.
  • by Bonker ( 243350 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @12:59PM (#71685)
    While Dimitry is certainly being treated unfairly, the criminal provisions of the DMCA cannot be thrown out as unconstitutional if it doesn't go to court.

    Now, the Goldstien vs. MPAA case may get the civial portions thrown out, but unless I'm mistaken, the act has two seperate components which went into effect at different times. That means they have to be ruled on seperately, right?

    Oh well, either way it's nice to see Adobe get a big black eye and a bloody nose!

  • by dexter1 ( 244765 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @01:43PM (#71687)
    The meeting scheduled for tonight regarding the denver protest is still on. This page [unm.edu] has the details
  • ""He" didn't sell the software anywhere. The company he works for did. Why was he arrested? Even if they had reason to arrest someone, why was he the only one arrested? Why not the company CEO who was also there?"

    Because even a corporate CEO would be likely to engender more sympathy and outrage than an "evil Russian Hacker".

    Even though officially he wasn't arrested for his speech, it's OBVIOUS that the speech is exactly WHY he was picked out to be arrested. Anyone with the talent and more importantly, the ability to communicate circumvention of pitiful corporate attempts at "commercialy sold security" is a threat to the corporate bottom line.

    Sklyarov had the balls to PUBLICALLY state, with proof, that "The Emperor Has No Clothes", and that pissed off the Emperor very much.

    The Emperor, in this case, being Adobe, who has VERY much to gain in selling their "e-books" scheme to publishing houses, who are undoutably frothing at the mouth over the prospect of eliminating the paper book as soon as they can to rid themselves of all that "lost revenue" because people have the AUDACITY to loan books and use libraries.

    One of the methods of "protection" that Sklyarov is accused of illegally "circumventing" under the DMCA is.. ROT13!

    Hell, next time someone discovers another security hole in IIS, they should "encrypt" the information with a simple scheme (say 1=A, 2=B, etc), attatch it to an e-mail to Microsoft with an "EULA" forbidding them to "decrypt" it without buying a "license" for your "ABC=123 Strong Encryption Technology".
  • "I don't see how talking about ANYTHING can be illegal - I think that much is in the constitution. Now, I was not at the conference, but I don't believe he was passing free copies of this program or source code for it (the two actions if that had happen could possibly be construed as being illegal)."

    Well, obviously, SOME forms of speech are and should be illegal, such as:

    1. Shouting "fire" in a crowded theater, etc
    2. Threats of illegal actions (I'll have your legs broken), etc.
    3. Libelous and Slanderous speech (though in the USA, libel and slander are NOT covered under criminal law, but CIVIL law, meaning you cannot be arrested or go to jail for it)

    What Sklyarov spoke about obviously is none of those three.

    Obviously, one of the DMCA's BIGGEST Constitutional hurdles is that it more or less adds this to the First Amendment:

    "you cannot engage in speech that will disseminate information about breaking any form of encryption or protection on a copyrighted work".

    Which is why I'm so angry at the dispicable and dishonorable "judge" Kaplan for not only IGNORING this problem with the DMCA, but he even EXTENDED it's power by including web links...
  • "I completely agree. This company is responible for holding a man hostage. Their executives should be meeting with the EFF now. Forcing Dmitri to spend a weekend in jail for this shows no good will by Adobe."

    I agree. Jailing one of us, a computer specialist, is in itself EXTREMELY punishing. Espeically when it's done unjustly. I know there are some who will argue that the DMCA is a law, but an UNJUST law is NO LAW. Morality and the Judeo-Christian Bible backs this sentiment.

    After all, those black civil rights protesters who rode in the front of the bus, or sat at the white's only lunch counters were breaking laws too, but NO ONE with any sense of morality would then or now call them criminals.
  • "Can you think of a BETTER place for a facist bitch than the FBI? I mean, if someone has natural tendancies to stick to the rules and enforce them even when they anger people, she's *exactly* the kind of person I'd like to see going after criminals."

    Well, *YOUR* kind of people are all over the FBI, apparently. Such as FBI agent Lou Horuchi, who ordered the operation that resulted in the murder of an innocent, unarmed woman and her infant she was holding, all in the name of enforcing a trumped-up gun charge against an admittedly un-nice person (Randy Weaver, who was a white seperatist).

    The FBI was thouroughly corrupted during the 50 year "reign of terror" of J Edgar Hoover, and hasn't shown ANY signs of having been reformed since.
  • "Personally, the fact that it was unanimous (I thought it was only the Senate that passed unanimously, actually) shows me that the people who voted for it are traitors. This is why we have the second amendment."

    And also why the Decaration of Independance is worded as deliberately as it is. And it WAS a resolution passed by our legally elected government of that time.

    The 2nd amendment is important, not for personal protection only, but in that only an armed populace FORCES the government to respect the laws and the people. ALL government power flows from the barrel of a gun, and consequently, only the opposite makes government have to respect the law and the outcome of an election.

    Please, anti-gun nuts, DON'T respond with "honorable people will obey the laws because they are honorable" BS that most of you spout. The whole REASON why we have a Constitution that includes a Bill of Rights (which, if you ever read it, includes ONLY restrictions on government, NOT on the people).

    They were designed because the Founders KNEW VERY DAMN WELL that government in and of itself was an intrinsically corrupt and self-serving thing, and that over time, people IN government tended to be infected. After all, they'd just fought and won a costly war to gain independance from one. A war that was possible because the citizens were ARMED. And that is why that right is in the Constitution.

    "When it gets bad enough that unjust and unconstitutional laws can be passed unanimously by a group of traitors, that group of traitors needs to be shot in order to prevent tyranny."

    They do need to be shot, after a legal trial, in which they are found guilty of treason according to the law. Probably the WORST omission from the Bill of Rights is an amendment making the violation of the Constitution by government treason, or at least a felony.

    "Much more of this type of shit, and I think Americans will be ready to take their government back from the corporations, by force if necessary."

    I think the fact that the DMCA passed 536-0 is proof that we may well be already at that line.

    Obviously NEITHER major political party is going to champion the people over any interest of the corporation. If the government keeps on this kind of path, without correction, obviously, some kind of consequence is inevitable. When the government refuses to obey the law, then there IS no way to get justice in the "system". Which is why there is a 2nd Amendment. I'm hoping it never comes to that. I belive this case, and Dr. Feltens are going to be very important to the future of our industry, AND to this country. I'm not willing to take up, or advocate taking up arms against the government, until and UNLESS the sytem completely fails us, and there is no longer any possibility of legal redress against such government abuse of the law.

    "Yes, this is tongue-in-cheek--shooting is only necessary against the armed forces in order to take the government back. Keep track of who voted the DMCA in and make sure you vote against them come re-election time."

    I agree, toungue in cheek. And I do intend to vote against EVERY congressman who was in office at the time of the DMCA's passage, regardless of party. Furthermore, when I do, I am going to write a letter to them explaining that this is WHY they do not have my vote, and that unless they introduce or co-sponsor a bill to repeal the DMCA, their opponents will continue to have my vote and my financial contribution.
  • "I mean, we used force of bribery to get Yugoslavia to hand over Milosevic, who hadn't broken any law in his country...
    Offtopic, but are you suggesting that genocide, crimes against humanity etc are legal in Yugoslavia?"

    Not at all. Only pointing out that there are others guilty of similar crimes (one of which is a former US President) whom the US does not deal with similarly.

    I hate to say it, but crap Clinton's aspirin factory fiasco and the arrest of Sklyarov give plenty of people reason, with JUSTIFICATION to hate the US.
  • "Well, of course, what he did *was* a crime, at least by our fucked-up standards. Is it fair? No. Is it just? No. Is it constitutional? Only up until a federal judge says its not."

    Why does the DMCA have any weight right now? Because a conflicted judge (Kaplan), who had previously worked for a lawfirm that represented Time-Warner (but nevertheless excoriated the defence lawyer, Martin Garbus for a similar, but FAR weaker conflict, his firm had worked for someone later BOUGHT by Time-Warner), who was one or all of:

    1. Corrupt (see conflict of interest)
    2. Incompetent (either hasn't read the Constitution, or think it means only what HE thinks it means)
    3. An oathbreaker (how did his 2600 ruling and prejustice preserve, protect, defend the Constitution, anyone?)

    Came up with a VERY bad decision (DeCSS case), which the news media and the public at large has let him get away with only because the defendants were "hackers".

    Methinks if there is going to be protest against the DMCA, someone needs to find out where that bozo works and picket outside it.

    Yes, I agree with the subject line, that a case NEEDS to go to court, if there is to be any hope at all of weakening or defeating the DMCA, but I can't morally ask another, especially a foreign national now being held against his will as a political prisoner, to make that sacraifice.

    I think Adobe is right now weighing the implications of this case, and the fact that it COULD be devastating to the DMCA, along with the BAD PR they are receiving right now in our community. While it may be true that we as a whole aren't listened to by the media, we DO have considerable influence beyond our numbers in what the companies we work for purchase.

    And at this point, I'd even buy MICROSOFT products over Adobe. MS, to my knowledge, isn't the cause of someone being unjustly imprisoned in a country foreign to them.

    This case and the case of Professor Felten have the distiction of being the first to seriously display the moral, educational, and social impact of the DMCA, in a way that the 536 co-conspirators (the Senate, House, and President (Clinton who unanimously voted for and signed the DMCA) probably never envisioned.

    Personally, I've resolved to NOT vote for ANY of the 535 Congressmen who were in office at the time of the DMCA's passage, as they all voted for it (or at least, failed to vote against it).
  • "Obviously, the severity of fascism cannot be compared to the injustice of the DMCA, but still: DMCA was enacted following the standard practices of the US; it is what the country wanted. The legislative process is how the country chooses to express its will. If the DMCA is wrong, then something must be wrong with the country."

    The DMCA is != fascism, but it's certainly a "thin end of the wedge" that could lead to such a system. Certainly, tolerating such laws, and elected officials who would create such laws speaks poorly of my countrymen.

    Which is the weakness of democracy... History has proven that when given the vote, the majority of the masses will vote themselves "security" over freedom every time, especially when the politicians exploit emotion ("it's for the children"), and crises (Columbine, the Depression) for their own gain.

    It's indicative of the resiliency of the Constitutional system that we didn't go over completely after FDR had absolute power to violate the law for 12 years (including setting up concentration camps for AMERICAN citizens of certain nationalities), but every politician SINCE FDR has followed his example of subverting the Constitution for their own gain, which leads us to today, and laws like the DMCA...

    This tendancy always leads to the masses voting themselves a dictatorship. This is why it's rare for a democratic form of government to survive more than a few generations.

    The USA is actually, the longest lived such government, and it's obvious the cracks are beginning to show, at least to all of us who are paying attention.
  • "Did not break US law because it did not happen in the US and the US has no jurisdiction over what a Russian citizen does in Russia. And considering that what he did in Russia is not even illegal there, there really truly is something wrong with this scenario"

    Our government acting like this is creating HAZARD for US Citizens travelling or doing business abroad as well. If we do not respect the sovergnity of other nations to live under their own laws, then why should THEY respect ours?

    Let's be consistent... The Chinese government, for example, has been guilty of breaking MANY MANY US laws FAR more serious than the DMCA... There is, for example, the small matter of the senseless murder of thousands of protestors in 1989... Why didn't we grab Zhang Jhemin (sp) the last time he visited the USA?

    I mean, we used force of bribery to get Yugoslavia to hand over Milosevic, who hadn't broken any law in his country...

    Given the US's POOR track record of protecting citizens abroad (particular Chinese-Americans on trial even NOW for dubious claims of "espionage", claims the ChiCom government refuses to provide ANY proof of), cavalier actions like this threaten the security of ALL Americans.
  • by Dancin_Santa ( 265275 ) <DancinSanta@gmail.com> on Friday July 20, 2001 @12:55PM (#71698) Journal
    July 23 is 3 more days that Dimitry will have stay in jail. Wouldn't it make sense to continue to pressure Adobe by bringing the case to light during that time? Take away one person's freedom, smear the name of the offending company.

    Sounds fair to me.

    Dancin Santa
  • 2. Incompetent (either hasn't read the Constitution, or think it means only what HE thinks it means)

    Actually, it does. As a practical matter, anyway. If you look at your average high-school civics (OK, government/social studies, most high schools don't have a proper civics class any more) textbook, they will give you the following standard definitions for the three branches of government (or derivatives thereof):

    • Legislative: makes the laws.
    • Executive: enforces the laws
    • Judicial: determines the meaning of the laws

    That's right: it is the duty of the judicial branch to determine the meaning of the laws, including the Constitution. They do this every day: when a law is challenged as unconstitutional, the court must determine the meaning of the Constitution, whether or not it precludes the law being challenged, etc.

    I am not saying that I agree with the law; quite the contrary. I think the DMCA is one of the best examples we have yet produced of bad law, and would be struck down immediately by a strict constructionist judge. Unfortunately, many judges take a very liberal (not politically liberal, but "willing to take liberty with interpretation" liberal) view of the constitution; this results in a very flexible Constitution, and when that flexibility exists, it will be bent to suit the will of somebody. In this case, it was bent to suit the will of the Corporations. (It usually is, but I won't go there....)

    Anyhow, the point is, any law, from a city ordinance all the way up to the Constitution, means exactly what the ruling judge says it means. If you don't like his interpretation, you can appeal--the system is set up with that capability for just this reason. If this DMCA were to go to the Supreme Court, and be struck down, we would all cheer, but the fact is, it would be 9 people determining what the Constitution means; a majority of those 9 would decide that "they say it means" what we wanted to hear. Would we complain about the interpretation then? No. Would it still be individual people making a determination on the meaning of the law? Yes.

    • our right to march in support of Dmitry in San Jose on Monday

    Sure, you have the right to march where and when you're told, or you have the right to receive punishment beatings and chemical weapon torture from masked jackbooted thugs.

    • we still have the means to tell a JBT to fuck off and back it up with force if necessary

    With the greatest of respect, you are completely deranged. If you force a confrontation on Monday, you will get hurt, and badly. Worse, the press will describe you as activists and extremists.

    Do us all a favour, don't mention "force". Just wear your smartest suit, go where you're told, and don't huck any rocks at the FBI building, huh?

  • by cybermerc99 ( 468036 ) on Friday July 20, 2001 @01:02PM (#71732)

    From one of my mailing lists...

    National Security and Individual Freedoms: How the Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA) Threatens Both.

    The article is here." [infowarrior.org]

    A good read, particularly after the crap Adobe is pulling with poor Dmitry.

The road to hell is paved with NAND gates. -- J. Gooding

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