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Re: [declan@well.com: [Politech] Lawsuit challenges law targeting Internet "annoyances" [fs]]

On 2/10/06, Eugen Leitl <eugen@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> ----- Forwarded message from Declan McCullagh <declan@xxxxxxxx> -----
> From: Declan McCullagh <declan@xxxxxxxx>
> Date: Thu, 09 Feb 2006 14:08:59 -0800
> To: politech@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Subject: [Politech] Lawsuit challenges law targeting Internet "annoyances"
>         [fs]
> User-Agent: Mozilla Thunderbird 1.0.6 (Macintosh/20050716)
> The complaint:
> http://www.politechbot.com/docs/annoy.complaint.020906.pdf
> News coverage:
> http://news.com.com/2100-1028_3-6037439.html
> Previous Politech message:
> http://www.politechbot.com/2006/01/12/new-law-targets/
> The prohibition in the new law:
> "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."
> -Declan

Wow, that's one of the most ridiculous laws I've ever heard of.  It's
actually a law I used to joke about when people talked about
legislating spam.  What's next, I used to say, a law against trolling
on [insert name of forum here]?

Hopefully the courts will refuse to acknowledge such a blatantly
unconstitutional law.  I've pretty much given up on the sanity of the
United States Congress, but the Supreme Court seems to still have a
little bit left.

Interestingly, the law refers to "interstate or foreign
communications" and not "interstate or foreign commerce", which means
in addition to the First Amendment it's probably in violation of the

Anyway, the even scarier section in terms of Tor is "(2) knowingly
permits any telecommunications facility under his control to be used
for any activity prohibited by paragraph (1) with the intent that it
be used for such activity".  Now "knowingly" and "with the intent" are
rather high hurdles to reach, but it is one step closer to outlawing
Tor altogether.

Anyone got any suggestions on where to move to?