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Re: LACC: Account sharing leads to false imprisonment

Amazing! If I'm allowed to express my opinion!

>Thought you might like another perspective:
>>                             A GORRIE STORY
>> Here's the background: in October of 1994, Hirsh's stepbrother, a U of

What I find so amazing is the fascinating arguments exposed here. Let's
see... First, let me say I start from a different point of view.

I see the University as a place for forming people and distributing ideas,
not juts the ideas of the "Establishment", but all kind of ideas. A place for 
the free interchange of all ideas and the formation of new persons.

Now, all your message transpires a special horror against the dispersion
of "anti-establishment" ideas. Of things that one could find "disturbing"
from some point of view...

Oh well, I wonder what it would have been if the arabs in Spain had only
translated the Koram in the middle ages, instead of translating all the
ancient wisdom and preserving it for all of us. Even if it conflicted with
*their* beliefs. It would have been great not to have Aristotles or Plato
at all. Just the Koram.

From your message, it looks like you want instead the Spanish Inquisition back:
if someone distributes strange ideas -anarchist, communist, etc...- that 
person is a risk for the stablishment and should be punished. Isn't it?

>Ignorance of the law is no excuse, and being easy to catch doesn't make
>you innocent of a crime.
	Yeah, but not showing volunteer to hide, expressing opinions openly,
is not being easy to catch, it's being confident in one's freedom of speech
and on the democratic system to protect it. Even in spite of overzealous
system administrators.

>> facility computer, received a complaint from someone at the University
>> of British Columbia about The Anarchives being posted to net news. The
>> person wanted it stopped.
>Interstate transport of stolen (presumably copyrighted) property, possible
>violation of national laws of both nations.  Unauthorized use of the
>computers at the University of British Columbia.
	Well, I don't know if that was copyrighted property. But, if it was,
it was up to the (C) holder to decide what actions if any to take. BSD-Unix 
is copyrighted code, but I wouldn't say that all the copies around are illegal,
or stolen.

	Unauthorized use? May I say that if that person asked someone (whomever)
for permission, then it is whoever gave permission (if any) who should be
pursued instead? I guess that if a poor guy is sold the Golden Gate, it is not
that poor guy's fault as much as the "seller's".

	Ah, but that guy was distributing "anarchistic" information: he
must have been pretty bad intentioned then. No one should have "unauthorized
ideas" and even less dare to distribute or share them. I see.

	Great that if someone complains about the distribution of 'X' kind
of ideas there's always a willing sysadmin to hunt the witch instead of
defending freedom of speech. Great.
>> have different last names, Gorrie concluded a larger hacker conspiracy
>> was afoot.
>Reasonable assumption.  The only way to find out different would be to
>violate the users' privacy by reading their mail, etc.
	What? May I suggest that, if the account has a owner, and a system
manager, and all that, those people should be asked prior to jumping to
conspiracy theories? The same kind of reasoning lead many innocents to die
with the Spanish Inquisition: hey, they were plotting with the devil against
god laws. Sorry, but I think a phone call to the implicated persons can
easily clear all those doubts without "electronic surveillance" as you propose.

>Collected possible evidence.  A good idea.  Allerting potential criminals
	Yeah. I suppose that if they were expressing distrubing ideas, they
were "potential criminals"... What else could they possibly be?

>If he turned out to be a terrorist who was planning to blow up a
>building, you would have called this a tremendous piece of police work,
>they could have written a million-selling book, and you would hail the
>sysadmin as a computer age hero.
	Great! I guess that prettily summarizes all: "if" he had turned to
be a "fill in your fears here". Just the same as it was with the Inquisition,
if they were good guys they shouldn't fear torture or dying for God. And it
was better to torture innocents than allowing any "potential bad guy" to get

>So Hirsh agreed that he had been illegally using the computer system
>and the case was settled with a monetary fine.
	I bet so. Under torture many innocents also confessed. And faced with
a multimillion dollar trial which, if you can't afford- will take you to
jail (which can be a real torture), I guess that most innocents will prefer
to go along with a smaller fine.

	It's often better to be alive and free than being the dildo of a
homsexual homicidal maniac in jail. Or visiting the dungeons of the 
Inquisition. Of course, if instead of distributing 'X' files he had just
killed his wife and her lover, and were multimillionaire, it would have
been quite different. Wouldn't it?

>> After subjecting Hirsh to complete and devastating public humiliation,
>> U of T was now pleading for discretion.
>After Hirsh broke the law, he is trying to get even for being caught by
>harassing the people who caught him.
	So, after one person was faced with an humongous bill, dispropor-
tionate, faced to an expensive trial he couldn't afford and forced into an
agreement that's being sold as a confession, and being publicly given a
walk around the city dressed as a damned heretic, he shouldn't have even the
right to complain.

	Obvious. We don't want the faith in the Inquisition to diminish, do we?


Look, I don't really know about the case. But I do really understand one thing:
if this guy hadn't posted what some person considered were "pernicious ideas"
he would have never been tracked down, villipendiated and taken to trial.

I don't care about if he was using public resources for something they shouldn't
be. That's something else to be discussed. Is it wrong to use a University
to spread ideas, specially when the mainstream media avoid them? I won't
comment on that.

But that someone can start a witch hunt 'cos some other one is posting some 
special kind of information... Let's say, I can't consider that justification

So. I think you have made a great point for the defense of cryptography: if 
we want to have free thought and free speech, and avoid a new Inquisition, 
that's the only way. But I'm sure that if these guys had encrypted their 
messages that would have been taken more as a demonstrationof their *evil*

After all, if they had nothing to fear, why hide? Why avoid torture? But they
didn't hide, and we have seen... yes. Long life to thought control!

	These opinions are mine and only mine. Hey man, I saw them first!