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It's now illegal to post on the Internet anonymously

Discussion in 'Legal' started by taliv, Jan 9, 2006.

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  1. taliv

    taliv Moderator

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    well, it was fun while it lasted

    goodbye internet

    no more pro-LEO threads, no more anti-LEO threads...

    no more sending email to president@whitehouse.gov...

    another casualty in the war on spam
     
  2. Biker

    Biker Member

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    To be perfectly honest, that post really annoyed me. I want all of your personal info, taliv, or you will be reported.

    Ah, how easily is a nation of criminals controlled...

    Biker
     
  3. gunner03

    gunner03 Member

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    All you have to do is ID right?? If I care enough to send something, I don't see a problem with saying who I am. I'm not saying to go all over the internet giving up your personal info, but I don't have a problem saying good job, or I don't agree.
     
  4. carguym14

    carguym14 Member

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    "There's no way to rule innocent men. The only power government has is the power to crack down on criminals. When there aren't enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws." - Ayn Rand, from the novel Atlas Shrugged



    One step at a time..................
     
  5. CAS700850

    CAS700850 Member

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    Reading the language, it looks like the same old Telephone Harrasment laws, just expanded to include things other than phones. Key language "with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten, or harass any person"

    "Like, Susie Q. is totally harassing me by e-mailing me about her dates with Greg, because she knows like I'm totally in love with Greg. Can't we like get her indicted on federal charges?"

    Yeah, they'll line up a load of cases for Grand Jury like this. :rolleyes:
     
  6. shermacman

    shermacman Member

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    How do you define "annoy"?

    My sister calls me a right-wing-knuckle-dragging-gun-toting-Neanderthal-God-fearing-conservative. She does not mean it as a compliment, but I am quite proud of it!
     
  7. geekWithA.45

    geekWithA.45 Moderator Emeritus

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  8. USMCRotrHed

    USMCRotrHed Member

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    I guess I've gotta go

    No more internet for me. Most of what I write is expressly intended to annoy leftists.
     
  9. carlrodd

    carlrodd Member

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    well that's a win/win situation. not only has she inadvertantly complimented you......now you can also deny that and have her prosecuted.
     
  10. Correia

    Correia Moderator Emeritus

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    I'm afraid Hardin/Gunkid is going to have to go away for about fifteen consecutive life sentances...
     
  11. sm

    sm member

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    Dear .gov,

    I have been more than just "annoyed" by .gov meddling.

    I do not appreciate MY Freedoms being infringed upon. I do not appreciate .gov allowing more and more Tyranny to come into and disrupt my life. I certainly do not apprecitate .gov breathing my air as they do these things either.

    Control under the guise of various Wars on Terror, Drugs, or anything else is still Tyranny. Control under the guise of being Political Correct is still Tyranny.

    Tyranny just flat out annoys me.

    I am watching, I am paying attention, I am not the only one that remembers some histories of people whom choose Freedom over Tyranny.

    In case your over-priced computer tools are not enough, may I suggest :
    http://www.dnsstuff.com/

    I use it, as do others. Just remember, a tool is never able to do harm by itself, it requires a user of said tool. It is the intent of the user of said tool that determines whether Moral Law or Criminal Law has been broken.

    Regards,

    Steve
     
  12. Boogyman

    Boogyman Member

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    Obviously hearing what the American people have to say is something Bush considers "annoying"...
    In fact, in a recent interview, when asked what he thought of protesters outside the whitehouse, Bubble-Boy replied, "oh, you get used to it after awhile..."
     
  13. CentralTexas

    CentralTexas Member

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    if you "annoy" someone that is. Has America just ceased to exist as I knew it?:(

    http://tinyurl.com/9ljnb

    By Declan McCullagh

    Published: January 9, 2006, 4:00 AM PST
    TalkBack E-mail Print TrackBack
    See all Perspectives

    Annoying someone via the Internet is now a federal crime.

    It's no joke. Last Thursday, President Bush signed into law a prohibition on posting annoying Web messages or sending annoying e-mail messages without disclosing your true identity.

    In other words, it's OK to flame someone on a mailing list or in a blog as long as you do it under your real name. Thank Congress for small favors, I guess.

    This ridiculous prohibition, which would likely imperil much of Usenet, is buried in the so-called Violence Against Women and Department of Justice Reauthorization Act. Criminal penalties include stiff fines and two years in prison.

    "The use of the word 'annoy' is particularly problematic," says Marv Johnson, legislative counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union. "What's annoying to one person may not be annoying to someone else."

    It's illegal to annoy
    A new federal law states that when you annoy someone on the Internet, you must disclose your identity. Here's the relevant language.

    "Whoever...utilizes any device or software that can be used to originate telecommunications or other types of communications that are transmitted, in whole or in part, by the Internet... without disclosing his identity and with intent to annoy, abuse, threaten, or harass any person...who receives the communications...shall be fined under title 18 or imprisoned not more than two years, or both."
    Buried deep in the new law is Sec. 113, an innocuously titled bit called "Preventing Cyberstalking." It rewrites existing telephone harassment law to prohibit anyone from using the Internet "without disclosing his identity and with intent to annoy."

    To grease the rails for this idea, Sen. Arlen Specter, a Pennsylvania Republican, and the section's other sponsors slipped it into an unrelated, must-pass bill to fund the Department of Justice. The plan: to make it politically infeasible for politicians to oppose the measure.

    The tactic worked. The bill cleared the House of Representatives by voice vote, and the Senate unanimously approved it Dec. 16.

    There's an interesting side note. An earlier version that the House approved in September had radically different wording. It was reasonable by comparison, and criminalized only using an "interactive computer service" to cause someone "substantial emotional harm."

    That kind of prohibition might make sense. But why should merely annoying someone be illegal?

    There are perfectly legitimate reasons to set up a Web site or write something incendiary without telling everyone exactly who you are.

    Think about it: A woman fired by a manager who demanded sexual favors wants to blog about it without divulging her full name. An aspiring pundit hopes to set up the next Suck.com. A frustrated citizen wants to send e-mail describing corruption in local government without worrying about reprisals.

    In each of those three cases, someone's probably going to be annoyed. That's enough to make the action a crime. (The Justice Department won't file charges in every case, of course, but trusting prosecutorial discretion is hardly reassuring.)

    Clinton Fein, a San Francisco resident who runs the Annoy.com site, says a feature permitting visitors to send obnoxious and profane postcards through e-mail could be imperiled.

    "Who decides what's annoying? That's the ultimate question," Fein said. He added: "If you send an annoying message via the United States Post Office, do you have to reveal your identity?"

    Fein once sued to overturn part of the Communications Decency Act that outlawed transmitting indecent material "with intent to annoy." But the courts ruled the law applied only to obscene material, so Annoy.com didn't have to worry.

    "I'm certainly not going to close the site down," Fein said on Friday. "I would fight it on First Amendment grounds."

    He's right. Our esteemed politicians can't seem to grasp this simple point, but the First Amendment protects our right to write something that annoys someone else.

    It even shields our right to do it anonymously. U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas defended this principle magnificently in a 1995 case involving an Ohio woman who was punished for distributing anonymous political pamphlets.

    If President Bush truly believed in the principle of limited government (it is in his official bio), he'd realize that the law he signed cannot be squared with the Constitution he swore to uphold.

    And then he'd repeat what President Clinton did a decade ago when he felt compelled to sign a massive telecommunications law. Clinton realized that the section of the law punishing abortion-related material on the Internet was unconstitutional, and he directed the Justice Department not to enforce it.

    Bush has the chance to show his respect for what he calls Americans' personal freedoms. Now we'll see if the president rises to the occasion.

    Biography
    Declan McCullagh is CNET News.com's Washington, D.C., correspondent. He chronicles the busy intersection between technology and politics. Before that, he worked for several years as Washington bureau chief for Wired News. He has also worked as a reporter for The Netly News, Time magazine and HotWired.
     
  14. ka50

    ka50 Member

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    lmao dubya must be the worst violator of civil liberties I've ever seen in America!
     
  15. Henry Bowman

    Henry Bowman Senior Member

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    That has to be a pseudonym.
     
  16. Sinsaba

    Sinsaba Member

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    How do you prove intent?
     
  17. CentralTexas

    CentralTexas Member

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    Yes, and it annoys me....
    :D
    CT
     
  18. Kurush

    Kurush Member

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    I'm filing this one away for the next time someone tells me they've never committed a felony.
     
  19. spacemanspiff

    spacemanspiff Senior Member

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    will the burden be upon the state/gov/whatever to prove the intent?
     
  20. lbmii

    lbmii Member

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    Well I for one find myself very annoyed with the all of you.

    Fellons all of you!
     
  21. rchernandez

    rchernandez Member

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    I think I'll change my Forum name to "Elvis".


    This post is surely annoying! Anyone have the DOJ's hotline number? ;)
     
  22. spacemanspiff

    spacemanspiff Senior Member

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    maybe i'll just have name changed to Spaceman Spiff.

    :neener:
     
  23. CAnnoneer

    CAnnoneer Member

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    It seems the constitution has become a minor piece of annoyance for many in WashDC.

    If somebody tries to defend Bush on this one, I might get annoyed.
     
  24. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Member

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    I have a right to annoy people. And certainly if you enter a forum on line you give up any claim to be free from annoyance. It's DOA.
     
  25. Duncaninfrance

    Duncaninfrance Member

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    You should live here - the French don't really understand the internet yet so trying to communicate with someone by e.mail is like platting fog!
    Duncan:banghead:
     
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