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Re: Los Angeles Times article on Helsingius and anon.penet.fi

Before going into the merits of this, let me make two points: 

One I specifically asked the reporter (Amy Harmon) to quote me as an
individual, not as a spokesperson for the EFF.  (It was Amy Harmon, and the
only address I have for her bounces, but as you can imagine I would like to
get in touch with her!  Anyone know it?)  These are my personal views; EFF
has no formal policy on this yet -- precisely because it's a complex issue.

Now, speaking personally: I believe there are trade-offs -- which is what I
told the LA Times.  I assume I was quoted accurately (although the word
"enforce" is awkward), but out of context.   Anonymity can be dangerous --
as can traceability, especially in/by repressive regimes.  Therefore I would
favor allowing anonymity -- with some form of traceability only under terms
considerably stronger than what are generally required for a wiretap.
Anyone who seriously needs anonymity because of a repressive government is
likely to use a foreign (outside whatever jurisdiction he fears) server, so
that this is not a matter of "local" laws.  The tracer would have to pass
through what I hope would be tighter hoops than we have now.  

Please note that this is not the same as the right to *private*
conversations and the use of encryption; this is the issue of being
accountable for what you publish in public.  

My assumption is that there will be a wide variety of Net communities with
different rules/regulations/attitudes towards anonymity that would apply ex
some kind of international sanctions; I think that's appropriate.  

Yes, I'm aware of the complexities, and of the possibilities for
miscarriages of justice.  The world isn't yet the way I want it to be.  But
I wanted to respond reasonably promptly.  

BTW, I would welcome a chance to read the whole article (or at least a
*little* more of the context, under fair use).
Speaking for myself, only (and publicly),
Esther Dyson

At 06:40 AM 9/1/96 -0400, Dave Farber wrote:
>>Posted-Date: Sun, 1 Sep 1996 14:59:53 +1000 (EST)
>>Date: Sun, 1 Sep 1996 14:59:53 +1000 (EST)
>>From: Charles Senescall <[email protected]>
>>To: [email protected]
>>Cc: [email protected]
>>Subject: Re: Los Angeles Times article on Helsingius and anon.penet.fi
>>Sender: [email protected]
>>On Sat, 31 Aug 1996, Declan McCullagh wrote:
>>> The attached article was reposted to fight-censorship with the permission
>>> of the Los Angeles Times, which ran it on the front page today. 
>>> Note Esther Dyson's comments:
>>>          "The damage that can be done by anonymity is far bigger" than in
>>>    any other medium, said Esther Dyson, chairwoman of the Electronic
>>>    Frontier Foundation. "In the end, you need to be able to get at
>>>    somebody's identity to enforce accountability, and the question is how
>>>    do you also enforce freedom of speech and freedom from prosecution for
>>>    unpopular opinions."
>>Is this _really_ the EFF policy on anonymopus remailers??
>>I will check with our local version of the EFF and see what they have to say.
>>If the EFF is not for anonymity it needs to be publicised. Perhaps the 
>>EFF has been in bed with the political pigs too long. *OINK*
>>   .////.   .//    Charles Senescall            [email protected]
>> o:::::::::///     Fuck TEL$TRA                    
>>>::::::::::\\\     Finger me for PGP PUBKEY           Brisbane AUSTRALIA
>>   '\\\\\'   \\    <A HREF="http://quux.apana.org.au/~apache/"> 

Esther Dyson				Always make new mistakes!
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