Monday, February 27, 2006

Mixed Compu-law Goodness

Or badness depending on how you look at things. The first link goes to a Bit-Tech interview of Cory Doctorow. (second link gets you there) The interview delves into Doctorow's perspective on DRM, and says some things that shouldn't get back to those on the supply side of the coin. I can see the worst solution to the problem he presents as proprietary hardware. While Apple and Microsoft have already taken similar approaches, could you imagine having to by hardware specific for your media. He raises some good points too, like why do we need DRM if its pointless in controlling the distribution of digital media. He also makes a great point about the evolution of the WIPO, and how it will result in an oppressive digi-overlord of the internet that will tear down the structure of the internet, and exploit all its users through its software and hardware. Its a good read.

Link number 2 comes from the L.A. Times about recent allegations of voter fraud. What is most interesting about this particular article is that it details a criminal action against the whistleblower for illegal access to technology. For some reason, I can't keep the palm of my hand from smacking my forehead. Really, I can't tell if this is a new nervous twitch, or some other disease communicated by legal futility. Logically, this doesn't make sense. Don't we want whistleblowers to alert the media or authorities to criminal activity, especially when it detrimentally impacts a Constitutionally guaranteed right? I will let that one simmer for a while.

Finally, since everything interesting seems to be happening in California today, the Ventura County Star is reporting on the Justice Department's response to Google's refusal to produce internet search logs. The article notes that the DOJ responded with this, "the information provided would not identify or be traceable to specific users, [so] privacy rights would not be violated." Interesting, I thought that subpoenas required probable cause, and specificity for the purpose satisfying probable cause...Maybe Attorney General Gonzales forgot this. I mean, why does the government need the information if it won't lead to any child molesters or people involved in the kiddy porn trade? Thanks to Google for sticking up for our rights, at least in the beginning.

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