Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

You Are Not a Lawyer

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the help-in-thinking-like-one dept.

The Courts 693

Paul Ohm is starting a new "very occasional" feature on the Freedom To Tinker blog called You Are Not a Lawyer — "In this series, I will try to disabuse computer scientists and other technically minded people of some commonly held misconceptions about the law (and the legal system)." In the first installment, Ohm walks through the reasons why many techies' faith in the presence of "reasonable doubt" is so misplaced. "When techies think about criminal law, and in particular crimes committed online, they tend to fixate on [the 'beyond a reasonable doubt'] legal standard, dreaming up ways people can use technology to inject doubt into the evidence to avoid being convicted. I can't count how many conversations I have had with techies about things like the 'open wireless access point defense,' the 'trojaned computer defense,' the 'NAT-ted firewall defense,' and the 'dynamic IP address defense.' ... People who place stock in these theories and tools are neglecting an important drawback. There are another set of legal standards — the legal standards governing search and seizure — you should worry about long before you ever get to 'beyond a reasonable doubt.'"

cancel ×

693 comments

Ohm's Law? (5, Funny)

loshwomp (468955) | more than 5 years ago | (#26800855)

Sounds like the piece should be called "Ohm's Law".

Re:Ohm's Law? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801249)

A couple of considerations:
(1) the attorney author comes from the DOJ's Cymbercrime division -- the DOJ may have one interpretation of the law but the courts might have another;
(2) Academic lawyers generally have a slanted view on the world; and
(3) the facts and circumstances of your given situation are very important, blanket generalizations are risky. Facts can sometimes be fluid a good lawyer, can setup the playing field to the benefit of his/her client.

Re:Ohm's Law? (5, Funny)

FalseModesty (166253) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801645)

(2) Academic lawyers generally have a slanted view on the world

As opposed to ACs?

Re:Ohm's Law? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801659)

(1) you are not a lawyer.
(2) Lawyers think differently depending on the situation they are in. A "DOJ" lawyer might have completely opposing viewpoints to his employer when writing on a blog.
(3) The DOJ cybercrime division is not known for producing academic lawyers.
(4) Situations have common facts and courts often analogize.

Re:Ohm's Law? (5, Funny)

lastchance_000 (847415) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801335)

I'll start a feature called "You are not a techie."

My first entry? Make sure your webserver/webhost is up to snuff before letting /. loose on it.

Re:Ohm's Law? (0, Offtopic)

jetsci (1470207) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801427)

Is it wrong that I did not RTFA but am now happily allowing Firefox to autorefresh every 15 seconds? Seems appropriate...

Re:Ohm's Law? (4, Informative)

TheRedSeven (1234758) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801463)

Since it's already /.'ed, here's the Google Cache [209.85.173.132] so you can at least read the text.

Re:Ohm's Law? (0, Redundant)

RiotNrrd (35077) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801507)

I'll start a feature called "You are not a techie."

That was my first thought upon reading this.

Re:Ohm's Law? (0, Offtopic)

discord5 (798235) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801407)

Sounds like the piece should be called "Ohm's Law".

Since he deals with a lot of techies, I'm sure that he's heard that joke only about a thousand times. This reminds me of a kid I used to go to school with whose name literally translated to "Out of the pants" (don't ask, Dutch names are a hoot) and his parents (presumable the father heavily intoxicated from celebrating his sons birth, and his mother heavily sedated) decided that it would a great idea to call him the local equivalent of the name "Willy".

Every time he introduced himself, people started laughing or made a joke that he'd heard a thousand times. He would then feign being amused, but you knew it annoyed him to a certain extent, which in turn amused everyone who knew him long enough to have heard the joke a couple of times.

Woe are the children of parents with a sense of humor. It's one of the few times that it's apropriate to actually feel sorry for someone while thinking "That's actually pretty funny" at the same time.

Re:Ohm's Law? (5, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801539)

Years ago I saw a US Air Force training document refer to "Ohm's Three Laws".
V=IR, I=V/R, and R=V/I. :P

Re:Ohm's Law? (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801839)

I'd have modded that terrifying were than an option. Is the USAF really having that kind of trouble recruiting people who've taken algebra?

And what's more we allow a lot of those same recruits to operate multi-million dollar machinery.

First (-1, Offtopic)

jetsci (1470207) | more than 5 years ago | (#26800875)

First first post and I...crap

Re:First (-1, Redundant)

jetsci (1470207) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801123)

Frankly, I fail to see the redundancy in my first first post...it quite literally is my first post and my first attempt at a first post. I'd mod that +Original.

IANAL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26800877)

IANAL, but I think this guy is just wrong.

Re:IANAL (1, Interesting)

spartacus_prime (861925) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801029)

IANALY, and I agree with you.

Re:IANAL (2, Interesting)

aliquis (678370) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801549)

What about hiding something for wireless NAS in a less than obvious place and just let them take the machines? Keep the things you want hidden on the disk in the wireless NAS and don't log your transfers.

If you think it's to hard to hide it what about hiding it at the neighbors apartment? Good luck with happening to bring that back for investigation ..

Re:IANAL (1)

aliquis (678370) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801567)

.. though the problem is probably all the fucking cd-r and dvd-rs which we don't even use any more.

Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (3, Insightful)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 5 years ago | (#26800883)

Disclaimers: I am a "techie" (whatever the hell that means). I do not pirate or violate copyright or IP laws to my knowledge. I am not a lawyer.

Why do I care about this? This confusingly assuming post is trying to say that techies are so stupid that they can only comprehend there being one piece of evidence in a trial and they think that if they cast doubt on this one piece of evidence then the accused is in the clear. I know this isn't true. If I prove that a screenshot of an IP address could be photoshopped yet there are logs upon logs provided by the ISP backing this up, I have done little if anything.

So draw a Venn diagram of all evidence (shadow-of-a-doubtable evidence unioned with unshadow-of-a-doubtable evidence) and show that if there exists any evidence outside of the shadow-of-a-doubtable circle than you're boned. That was essentially the only point you had in your windy post, correct? What else was there? A lesson on how police can opt to legally collect information regarding a case?

Thank you for the world class revelation, Paul. And also thank you for the imagery of "techies" being bumbling buffoons aping Perry Mason in their dreams. Perhaps my father was on to something when he tried to teach me that for all lawyers that exist none of them have any interest other than money and sucking the blood out of other people.

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (5, Insightful)

0racle (667029) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801329)

Actually yes, a whole lot of people who call themselves techies are stupid. They also think they are far more intelligent then they are. On top of that, many who call themselves techies believe they are so far above blue collar 'mouth breathers' that with very little work they can completely confuse them. I mean, hell, you just did something similar here. You assumed that the article writer must be an idiot because, well, you said so. Go ahead and rethink your logic and consider that perhaps something happened, maybe even several times, that prompted the writer to write what he did.

Most people are idiots, that they call themselves a techie doesn't change that.

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801877)

No, he concluded that the article writer is an idiot because the writer made stupid assumptions.

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801935)

I mean, hell, you just did something similar here. You assumed that the article writer must be an idiot because, well, you said so.

Uhhh, where the hell did I say that? Technically, I thanked him!

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (1)

jambarama (784670) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801953)

I'd call that the Dunning-Kruger Effect [wikipedia.org] .

Kruger and Dunning examined self-assessment of logical reasoning skills, grammatical skills, and humor. After being shown their test scores, the subjects were again asked to estimate their own rank, whereupon the competent group accurately estimated their rank, while the incompetent group still overestimated their own rank.

Across four studies, the authors found that participants scoring in the bottom quartile on tests of humor, grammar, and logic grossly overestimated their test performance and ability. Although test scores put them in the 12th percentile, they estimated themselves to be in the 62nd.

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (1)

bugnuts (94678) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801361)

So draw a Venn diagram of all evidence (shadow-of-a-doubtable evidence unioned with unshadow-of-a-doubtable evidence) and show that if there exists any evidence outside of the shadow-of-a-doubtable circle than you're boned.

There's no measuring stick with "shadow of doubt" in our legal system, afaik. It's "beyond reasonable doubt", which is the amount of "Hrmm...." that would cause a reasonable person to suspect it might not be true.

Many times, lots of evidence with reasonable doubt can be compounded to produce beyond reasonable doubt due to sheer quantity.... where it's unreasonable to think someone not guilty would have so much evidence against him, even if it could have other explanations. Might want to get rid of all those ancient "how to hack into any computer" and "the anarchist's cookbook" texts you printed out... when your house is searched, they'll be used against you even if you forgot you had them.

(The unit "Hrmm...." is a small quantity of doubt.)

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801519)

There's no measuring stick with "shadow of doubt" in our legal system, afaik. It's "beyond reasonable doubt", which is the amount of "Hrmm...." that would cause a reasonable person to suspect it might not be true.

You are correct, your metric is so much more measurable.

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801965)

the amount of "Hrmm...." that would cause a reasonable person to suspect it might not be true.

The problem is, often the "reasonable people" in the Jury don't have enough imagination. Sometimes, they go on gut feeling -- it's an "I don't like this guy, I think he did it," rather than a "Well, the evidence actually seems to support that this guy did it."

If it's a single IP address in a log which might've been photoshopped, I don't think that should be admissible. If it's that, plus logs from the ISP, plus an eyewitness account, then it's starting to get into the realm of, either they did it, or there's a massive conspiracy to frame them.

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801977)

Why not put an actual number to it? Say, given a piece of evidence, 9 out of 10 suspects with that evidence against them would be guilty. That would be a 10% doubt. Now take 10 such pieces of evidence, run the math an you get 99/100 suspects would be guilty. So that brings the total down to a 1% doubt. The question is, at what percentage does "reasonable doubt" kick in?

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (4, Interesting)

Austerity Empowers (669817) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801403)

I read this as a warning that such and such ironclad defenses are not the complete picture of how a prosecution would go, and to listen to your lawyers legal advice.

True, smart people would have thought this through. There is no shortage of dumb criminals, the newspaper is full of them. Particularly so for teenagers, I can't count how many times I've heard "ironclad" loopholes for smoking pot, carrying drugs, getting away with shoplifting that any reasonable person would know has to be BS. Living in California for most of my teenager years, you can't imagine how many times I've heard the "minors cannot enter into contracts" law used as a defense in ways that couldn't ever work. Everyone was a lawyer...

I think it's healthy to point out that this isn't a game, that there is no magic pixie dust to escape you from criminal activity. The subtext might be, if you're going to commit a crime, assume big brother is watching and think through how he's go about proving you guilty. Assume he's competant.

I suspect that in most of the cases this guy is writing about, the people caught never expected they'd be investigated. The likely compounded their problem with lame defenses after the fact, because they're shocked/outraged/scared, and not listened to their lawyers advice, assuming he/she was too stupid to understand the technology. It comes across a bit weak that because one lawyer writes about the issue and clearly understands it, that should assume all lawyers would...but then I think he did a good job of explaining why it doesn't matter anyway.

[And no, I don't think "troll" is the right moderation for parent, although it could have been more civil]

Collect information (1)

phorm (591458) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801589)

A lesson on how police can opt to legally collect information regarding a case

Seems to me it's more that the collection of such information can be fairly invasive/damaging in itself.

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (1, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801721)

And also thank you for the imagery of "techies" being bumbling buffoons aping Perry Mason in their dreams.

He must read slashdot comments, because it looks like that to me, too, and I'm a nerd as well. You just have to chuckle at some of the stupid things that are said here, and I have to admit to being stupid sometimes too.

Perhaps my father was on to something when he tried to teach me that for all lawyers that exist none of them have any interest other than money and sucking the blood out of other people.

I'm afraid your father was wrong. Yes, there are bloodsuckers, but not all. When you need a lawyer, one will save you money. If you're getting divorced or forced into bankrupcy you NEED a lawyer.

When someone rear-ends your car and you have to go to the hospital, his insurance company is going to pay your medical bills and try to avoid even that. A lawyer will collect 3x the medical bills for "pain and suffering"; that's the law and it's your right. The insurance company will do whatever it can to avoid their responsibility. The doctor gets a third, the lawyer gets a third (half if it has to go to court) and you get a third (unless it goes to court).

If you get appendicitis are you going to read a few books and try to take out your own appendix?

I'm not a lawyer, but I've been divorced and then bankrupted. I NEEDED lawyers both times, and the money I spent was an investment. When you need a doctor you need a doctor. When you need a lawyer you need a lawyer.

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801851)

I'm going to go ahead and call bullshit on your blanket statement about lawyers there.

What about techies who later become lawyers? I worked in IT for about 5 years while getting my CS degree. Programmed for a few years then decided to go to law school.

I originally went due to youthful dreams of fighting the man (RIAA) and while the real world has hardened me a bit (re 100k+ in student loans) I still would love to do it once I am financially stable.

Re:Wow! Who ever would have guessed that!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801973)

A whole lot of "techies" (yourself included, apparently) are arrogant assholes who think they've got a lock on "how things work" more than anyone else... I think that's what he was driving at.

Honestly, I think you proved his point for him.

Legal standards of search and seizure (3, Insightful)

Max Threshold (540114) | more than 5 years ago | (#26800885)

You mean the ones the Florida Highway Patroll pioneered ignoring back in the 80s, and which are now routinely ignored by law enforcement agencies nationwide? Trust me, I worry about those legal standards all the time...

Re:Legal standards of search and seizure (5, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801275)

IANAL but I know some Law facts.

1 - dont trust cops.
2 - Dont trust judges.
3 - Dont trust lawyers.
4 - assume that everyone is trying to shaft you.
5 - Once you are in the legal system THEY OWN YOUR BUTT.
6 - If you are going to do something illegal, make sure you CANT GET CAUGHT.
7 - Dont do anything illegal.

Honestly, Judges hate you, cops hate you, everyone on a jury if you get that far hates you. you are considered Guilty until proven innocent. Dont even believe the Bullshit given to you as a youth that it's the other way around. It's not and never has been that way.

Finally, you cant talk a cop out of arresting you. You can make him think it's more bother than it's worth and let you go if it's not worth it and you're being a nice guy. They will let a nice guy in Abercrombie that says yes sir, no sir, thank you sir go with a warning way before the dont touch me pig screaming hoodie wearing blacked out eyesocket head shaved like the damned pincushion for a head guy. It blows my mind how stupid many criminals are, if you dress and look like a punk, the cops will treat you like a punk.

I never got in trouble as a kid. but then I was aware of my location and had a scanner in my pocket with a earphone in all the time. Friends learned that if I left a party or gathering, they need to as well.

Re:Legal standards of search and seizure (4, Funny)

FalseModesty (166253) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801815)

I never got in trouble as a kid. but then I was aware of my location and had a scanner in my pocket with a earphone in all the time.

Wow. Just seriously paranoid, or did you commit lots of crimes?

Re:Legal standards of search and seizure (2, Insightful)

MattSausage (940218) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801909)

Holy crap.. you seriously walked around with a police scanner in your ear ALL the TIME... and you were still invited to parties? And you are PROUD of this? Gee, I wonder where the rest of the world got the idea that techies are a bunch of awkward losers who think they're so much smarter than anyone else. frankly, the people inviting the crazy-paranoid-police-scanner dude were the smartest in that entire scenario.

Re:Legal standards of search and seizure (1)

musikit (716987) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801955)

7 - Dont do anything illegal.

see this is where this whole argument falls apart. what is legal today may not be tomorrow. in which case can you be prosecuted for something you did when it was legal after its been made legal?

going by

4 - assume that everyone is trying to shaft you.

yes i can.

Pfft, lawyers (5, Funny)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 5 years ago | (#26800917)

Difference between them and us?

  • Techie: If you don't know how to do what I do, then learn.
  • Lawyer: If you don't know how to do what I do, pay me $500 an hour or your children will die penniless in the gutter.

Re:Pfft, lawyers (1)

spartacus_prime (861925) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801389)

$500 an hour? What cheap lawyers do you go to?

Re:Pfft, lawyers (2, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801409)

WE would be driving more mercedes and BMW's if we did the same thing.

Problem is IT guys are whores. we give up our craft for free at the drop of a hat. Lawyers simply grin and make you supply the lube.

Stereotypes (3, Insightful)

tknd (979052) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801485)

The problem I have with any grouping is that it always degenerates to stereotypes. And before you know it, you are the stereotype, simply because you're grouped with those people. I'm not saying that there are not lawyers that are not sharks, and that there are not techies that teach, but that because of these assholes in each camp along with the stereotype, everyone in that group carries the blame.

This is all fine if made in good humor, but when it gets personal, or taken too far, the result is enemies and flaming rather than meaningful discussion. Simply put, there is no discussion if either side or both sides choose to close their minds to criticism.

IPBIC* (5, Funny)

paiute (550198) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801047)

IANAL
YANAL

then who the hell is a lawyer?
TWTHIAL?

WWJD?
JWRTFM!

*I post because I care

IANAL and who would want to be? (1)

Rayeth (1335201) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801059)

Seriously if you are already tech minded why on God's Green Earth would you want to get involved with the legal profession if you could possibly avoid it?

Re:IANAL and who would want to be? (5, Insightful)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801347)

I don't think the point is getting involved, it is that many tech types, and more likely self proclaimed techies, will stray into gray areas and they need to know that their short sighted, I can't be punished theories aren't all that strong outside of their mind or circle.

I have seen this in the past where people on IRC serve ip copyrighted materials and think a simple warning "if you are a law enforcement or affiliated with them, you are not allowed in the server" will get any evidence thrown out if they are busted. It's stuff like that which people think justifies behavior or removes possible penalties from it that is being addressed. It's the I'm using Lime wire but I have an open access point which I will blame everything on, just to have your computer taken by warrant before you can delete the lime wire program or any of the files your sharing.

Talk about timing (3, Interesting)

drhamad (868567) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801069)

Only yesterday I read an article (found through Reddit) called (paraphrasing) "You are not a macroeconomist - you are a geek" - about all the Reddit/Digg/whatever people that think they understand the economy and how to fix it.

Re:Talk about timing (1)

orclevegam (940336) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801449)

Only yesterday I read an article (found through Reddit) called (paraphrasing) "You are not a macroeconomist - you are a geek" - about all the Reddit/Digg/whatever people that think they understand the economy and how to fix it.

Who the hell would be so deluded as to think they know how to "fix" the economy? I mean, I know some things that are wrong with the economy (in a broad general sense), and I've got some ideas on how some of those issues might be addressed, but I'd never claim to have "the solution" to all our economic worries, and anyone that does is full of it even if they are a macro-economist. The same could be said of almost any non-trivial issue in any field. IANAL and I wouldn't claim to know how to totally fix our legal system, but that doesn't mean I don't have some ideas that I think would improve it, or that just because IANAL that those ideas aren't good ideas (and even if you are a lawyer that doesn't mean your ideas are automatically good either). I am a programmer, and I've got some ideas that would be nice to have in a programming language, but I'd never try to claim it was "The One True Language" and would make all other obsolete, or that just because someone isn't a programmer that they wouldn't be able to provide useful ideas or suggestions.

Re:Talk about timing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801467)

I would bet on the geeks, all we do is imagine, build and maintain large complex interacting systems. Often with many different 'agents' involved.
The economy is just another system like that. Economists at least recently haven't shown themselves to understand much about anything at all, or how to keep the economy from failing, never mind fixing or rebuilding it.

Re:Talk about timing (4, Insightful)

mattrumpus (677024) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801685)

Part of the problem is that "the geeks" got hold of economics and constructed their big, deterministic, agent based models. Models can be illuminating true, but in the case of economics, when reality and models parted company, the economists bemoaned the inability of the real world to match theory.

What is desperately needed in economics is a more reality based outlook that attempts to truly deal with the social and economic problems of wider society, rather than a bunch autistic, antisocial, arrogant geeks who don't even realise they're only allowed to keep doing what they're doing because it serves the interests of the powerful (and they're not getting in the way too much).

IAAE

Oh hey (1)

kjzk (1097265) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801071)

I'm still lost for words on this one.

YANAL (4, Funny)

shma (863063) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801077)

Y not?

No, I think the converse is true (2, Insightful)

ruin20 (1242396) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801103)

That a lot of times people (judges) simply DON'T UNDERSTAND THE IMPLICATIONS OF A TECHNICAL ARGUMENT and rule the way they want anyways. This is why patent suits were always held in west texas and this is why the RIAA will withdraw losing cases only to forum shop in an effort to push the suit again.

The fact that all the evidence the RIAA offers shows a link to the computer AND NOT THE USER seems to be something that people (lawyers, judges) IGNORE shows they don't actually care about the FACTS. Until you start taking photos of people through their webcams as they do naughty things, or come up with a way to show exclusive use of a devise or connection, then this still happens to be evidence wrongly taken into consideration.

Re:No, I think the converse is true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801293)

tl;dr

also, too many caps

Re:No, I think the converse is true (2, Insightful)

InverseParadox (189133) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801629)

...it's a good thing I don't have mod points right now, because I'd be completely stumped as to how to mod that.

On the one hand, I agree with most of what you're saying.

On the other, I can see how to interpret what you're saying and the fact (and way) that you're saying it as evidence that the article's premises are correct.

On the third, given the juxtaposition of your post with your .sig, I'm not entirely positive you aren't trolling.

Hopefully those who do have mod points will be better able to judge this than I am.

Re:No, I think the converse is true (4, Insightful)

The Only Druid (587299) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801665)

It's sort of fascinating that you've posted the exact sort of response TFA expects. I'm tempted to think you're being ironic.

Here's the thing: a lot (i.e. the majority, actually) of these technical arguments you've referred to here are just silly. For example, you complain that the RIAA evidence links only to the computer, not the user. This is, of course, true. However, in the case of a family home that means the prosecution can narrow it down to the household members, so your argument would merely be "Well, you don't know if it was the dad or the son, so you can't sue", and that'll end up just bumping into group liability (which I won't bore everyone with here).

In the case of a shared computer, you'd have more of an argument, e.g. one a library computer or whatnot. But realistically, how many prosecutions have involved such a machine? So far, as far as I know, all the prosecutions have involved machines in private homes or apartments, so what exactly are you arguing?

Is Paul Ohm a Lawyer? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801141)

It sure does not sound like this guy is much of a lawyer based on that craptacular display of writing. He does not seem to back up any of his arguments with things a lawyer usually includes in a law article such as citations, jurisprudence, and you know, actual evidence.

I guess law school + blog = expert

His Point? (1)

immcintosh (1089551) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801149)

This seems to amount to nothing more than "they can take your shit and look at it, and your defense lawyer will probably suck." I think it's fair to say that people who make claims about open access points and whatnot aren't stupid enough not to realize that, and are really just taking that bit for granted (as really anybody with a brain should).

I'm really left wondering what his point is. Does he really think people are assuming their shit won't even be searched? Well, thanks for that tip for all of the idiots out there I guess...

Re:His Point? (1)

smooth wombat (796938) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801901)

Does he really think people are assuming their shit won't even be searched? Well, thanks for that tip for all of the idiots out there I guess...

There are people out there who think if they're being pursued by the police that by crossing into another county/state, that somehow they can't be arrested for whatever crime they committed or that the pursuing police have to stop pursuit. Why should this be any different?

And yes, I'm being serious.

You Are Not a Lawyer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801153)

This is a high complement.

Let's start our own (4, Interesting)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801161)

You Are Not a Technologist for lawyers. That would be especially educational on intellectual property where lawyers are often absolutely clueless as to what a "technology" or "invention" actually looks like and how easy it is to make something that they thing is super cool, which we actually know is pretty mundane.

A few years ago, I went into put-up-or-shut-up mode with a lawyer over DRM. She kept saying that we needed the DMCA because it would protect a growing market for "interchangeable, competitive, open DRM" or something to that effect. It basically boiled down to a pipe dream about DRM that is open to competition, not locked down to one vendor and that doesn't balkanize the marketplace. Yeah, I know. I should have asked her if she wanted a cherry on top and for me to add a pony to her list while she was at it.

When I asked her **how** that would happen, when so far, no one has accomplished that, she had no clue. None. I pointed out that it is absolutely ridiculous to think that you can just weave DRM into an OS, and that if you leave it in application space a la iTunes, no one else is forced to use it. Again, no clue.

Hopefully she and her colleagues got that pony...

Re:Let's start our own (0)

Samschnooks (1415697) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801373)

Yeah, I know. I should have asked her if she wanted a cherry on top and for me to add a pony to her list while she was at it.

That depends. Was she hot? God, back when I was in school, there were constantly hot chicks in and out of the Law school!

Re:Let's start our own (1)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801461)

The point of DRM is not that you force people to use it. I can still watch avi files and listen to mp3s on my Vista machine. I can rip DVDs too, and download torrents. Microsoft don't care about this.

What Microsoft and Apple are trying to do is to convince the content industry that their schemes are safe enough to trust over DVDs and CDs. That's doesn't mean foolproof by any means, just fiddly to crack but cheaper and more convenient than going out and physically buying a DVD or CD or even downloading a torrent. If they can convince the content industry, the users will follow.

That's what Apple did with iTunes. It won't be open of course, that defeats the whole purpose.

Re:Let's start our own (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801745)

Microsoft and Apple shouldn't bother if it means compromising their own products.

DRM is fine for iTunes or perhaps a BD player application.

Once it goes beyond that, it's a matter of a small minority of the
economy dictating terms to everyone else and telling us how we can
use our own machines.

Not every Turing Machine is used to watch movies. Not every owner
of such a device ever has any intention of doing so. Computers do
a lot of real work that really shouldn't be burdened with a lot of
extra overhead and nonsense.

If the movie industry wants to take over Windows or MacOS then the
relevant CEOs should have the backbone to go tell Valenti's successor
what to go do with himself.

Oh praise ...whatever! (2, Funny)

Samschnooks (1415697) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801179)

I can't wait until he goes into Civil Torts and IP law especially about the GPL - I hope. I really hate it when I have a question and some IANAL chimes in with an opinion and says that "it's right there in the GPL in black and white" and how can I be so stupid as to not understand it! But yet, folks get into trouble with it all the time without any intent on malice. The GPL is all legalese that I don't understand and therefore, I will not use it or software under it for commercial use without advice from an IP attorney and since I can't afford one, I will not use the GPL.

I guess I'm too stupid to use GPL software.

Re:Oh praise ...whatever! (2, Insightful)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801797)

The GPL is all legalese that I don't understand...I guess I'm too stupid to use GPL software.

Perhaps you are. But then, you'd be too stupid to use any software with an EULA. Or to purchase any service that involved a contract or agreement.

You'd surely be too stupid to sign off on that big bunch of legalize necessary to buy a house, and probably too stupid to sign the legalize on an apartment lease.

So if you're too stupid to use GPL software, you're basically too stupid to function in this society. I'm sorry to hear that.

Re:Oh praise ...whatever! (3, Informative)

Zordak (123132) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801861)

(Shameless plug for my own GPL paper. [jw.com] With good examples! I send it to my clients all the time. Bottom line: the GPL is not simple. And this doesn't even include the v.3 stuff.)

Reasonable Doubt. (4, Interesting)

scorp1us (235526) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801201)

The conviction rate in the the US above 98%
The conviction rate during the Spanish Inquisition was 96%.

Therefore, either we're really good at identifying people, or "reasonable doubt" has become unreasonably weak defense.

Re:Reasonable Doubt. (5, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801387)

At least people expect the cops to break down your door in the U.S. Nobody expects the...

Oh, forget it.

Re:Reasonable Doubt. (2)

Darundal (891860) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801489)

Can I get a link to where you are getting that number for the conviction rate in the US?

Re:Reasonable Doubt. (3, Informative)

ya really (1257084) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801853)

From the DOJ:

Cases were terminated against 86,680 defendants during 2005. Most (90%) defendants were convicted. Of the 78,042 defendants convicted, 74,226 (or 95%) pleaded guilty or no-contest.

Re:Reasonable Doubt. (1)

ya really (1257084) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801895)

Link apparently didnt get in my last reply:
stats on conviction rates [usdoj.gov]

Re:Reasonable Doubt. (1)

Zordak (123132) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801905)

Can I get a link to where you are getting that number for the conviction rate in the US?

It's right here. [slashdot.org]

Re:Reasonable Doubt. (3, Insightful)

The Only Druid (587299) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801715)

That logic doesn't follow. It assumes, among other things, that: (a) we ever had a lower rate (i.e. that it has 'become' anything), and (b) we're not just better at dropping cases before they go to trial where the person is innocent (which would be a good thing).

Re:Reasonable Doubt. (2, Interesting)

YouWantFriesWithThat (1123591) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801741)

the conviction rates (usually) include plea bargains as a conviction, because you are pleading guilty to a crime. many of the people facing criminal charges qualify for a public defender and economically can't pay for their own defense. public defenders have more cases than they know what to do with, so they push for plea bargains. also, if you want to be cynical, some public defenders' offices are basically an offshoot of the DA's office. in some cities a person facing a criminal charge gets damn near railroaded into pleading guilt to something, no matter what the facts are.

most defendants never get to defend themselves at all. the cops arrest you, seize whatever is within reach, prosecutor brings a set of charges, and you get offered a plea deal. no one ever looks at the legality of the search and seizure of evidence.

i taught for a year in a school for kids that had been expelled from the regular school system. there was a senior there, never got in trouble, really nice kid. he was standing in his front yard playing with his niece. 2 cops jumped the fence 'in the course of an investigation' on his block. if i remember correctly there was an altercation across the street. they grabbed the kid, threw him on the ground, searched him, and found 2 nickel bags of weed. he was arrested on the spot, and eventually charged with possession with intent to deliver, a felony. there goes your right to vote, etc.

he ended up getting a plea deal down to simple possession, a misdemeanor with a couple hundred dollar fine. he couldn't afford an attorney and the public defender convinced him to plead. i had a friend who got caught with about 10 times as much weed in the same city. he was issued a ticket for possession and was free to go. difference? my friend was white and out at the bars, the kid was white and lived in the ghetto.

now, i am not a lawyer (of course) but i think that he would have had a pretty good chance of getting the case dismissed. they had no reason to search someone that was across the street or down the block from a fight. unless he was reported to be involved (he wasn't) they had no reason to even be in his fenced off yard. just another successful prosecution for the DA, and no one cares how the evidence was gathered.

Re:Reasonable Doubt. (2, Informative)

Firethorn (177587) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801769)

Could be worse, Japan's [wikipedia.org] is 99.97%.

Conviction rate comparison [wordpress.com]

China is 98%

The USA is listed as 65-80% because statistics are mostly state level.

Therefore, either we're really good at identifying people, or "reasonable doubt" has become unreasonably weak defense.

Or you're using made up statistics.

Summary for those who didn't RTFA (4, Insightful)

DigitalSorceress (156609) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801209)

Here's my summary:

"Beyond a Reasonable Doubt" may get you acquitted in the end, but that doesn't apply to all the things that happen to you BEFORE the trial: Cooling your heels in jail while charged, having every piece of technology you own seized as evidence, incredibly high legal fees, yada yada.

So, I guess the summary of the summary is:

Keep yer nose clean.

I suppose if you look at all the RIAA cases that routinely pop up here on /. you can easily see what he's talking about: look at all the costs and hardships those accuesed have to go through... The old lady who had probably never even listened to an mp3 in her life could probably attest to the pain. No reasonable jury would ever have convicted her, but that didn't stop the RIAA from causing her a big bunch of trouble.

False charges (3, Insightful)

phorm (591458) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801511)

Keeping your nose clean doesn't always work. If they have enough suspicions the police (or the RIAA, whatever) will do their best to nail you to the ground, which includes all the above.

As you mentioned: "the old lady who had probably never even listened to an mp3 in her life could probably attest to the pain"

Innocence is no defense against having your life ruined by invasive investigation, reputation-destroying accusation, and many other such things.

Re:Summary for those who didn't RTFA (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Cowpat (788193) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801931)

Oh, I read the article as "technological arguments, though sound, won't stop the legal system being 100% broken."

Thank You!!!!! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801213)

Yes, I'm an engineer, but I also studied law. I have thought about becoming a patent attorney, but I haven't taken the bar exam yet in my state. I'm so tired of people who stand on a soapbox and proclaim how much they had to learn about [CS|IT|other technical field] while simultaneously spouting blatant lies when it comes to law. Guess what? Lawyers aren't stupid, they have doctoral degrees, and most of the people on slashdot in the CS/IT fields who pretend to know the law do not.

Re:Thank You!!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801381)

slander!

Re:Thank You!!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801529)

Uh, libel.

Re:Thank You!!!!! (1)

cecille (583022) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801657)

Stupid question, but where are you from that lawyers need doctoral degrees?

Re:Thank You!!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801767)

In the US, a law degree is a Juris Doctor in most (if not all) states.

Re:Thank You!!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801793)

Typical degree from a law school is a something like Juris Doctor. Not a PhD, but a doctorate anyway. Certainly as much work as (and probably at a higher level than) an MD. Certainly more than a PhD in the fine arts or humanities, perhaps less than one in physical sciences or engineering.

Re:Thank You!!!!! (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801689)

SOME lawyers aren't stupid. Just like some people who post on Slashdot aren't stupid. But that doesn't preclude stupid lawyers, or idiotic Slashdot posts. Didja sleep during the logic courses that I'd presume you had to take when getting your engineering and law education?

LEARN (3, Interesting)

geekmansworld (950281) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801279)

How irksome that judges, juries and lawyers should have to learn how technology works in order to do their jobs properly.

Yes, people do have to use an ounce of cation online. Installing virus-checkers and securing your Wi-Fi are very important security measures.

However, if we are entering an era where the justice system simply can't be bothered learning anything about the most basic computer technology, we're entering an era of wrongful convictions.

I remind everyone of the schoolteacher who was fired [go.com] over spyware popups. It's time for the justice system to educate itself, not bury its head in ancient jurisprudence.

Only thing more annoying... (4, Insightful)

sampson7 (536545) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801319)

... than techies trying to play lawyer are lawyers who dismiss the contributions of their technical staff.

For the record IAAL (though not your lawyer) working in house at a company. Our "techies" are engineers, builders, power system analysts, traders, etc. Another word for these people is "clients." The legal department exists to further the interest of the company and enable our techies to do business. Sure, criminal prosecutions are different than commercial contracts, etc., but the principle is the same -- the lawyer exists to aid his client in getting the best possible deal. I think the difference in outlook often results from the fact that criminal defendants tend not to be those in society best equipped to aid in their own defense, but good attorneys do their best to bring their clients along.

If fact, the best thing about being a lawyer is helping your clients execute our common goals. Really, lawyers really provide the same service as good tech support -- except we help clients navigate the twisted corridors of the law instead of technology or computer code.

Re:Only thing more annoying... (5, Insightful)

squidfood (149212) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801635)

...navigate the twisted corridors of the law instead of technology or computer code.

That y'all built yourselves... talk about job-preserving legacy code... ;)

Reputation VS incarceration (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801369)

Basically what it seems this article is saying is "despite all the technical 'doubts' you may throw against the charges, your live will already be ruined by the seizure of your equipment and the trial-by-media that ensures various charges"

And sad as it is, that's probably a fairly true statement. Even here on slashdot I remember that when some guy stated that the kiddiepix on his computer came from a trojan that had massively owned his machine (and it was shown it had been fairly owned), many still believe that the possibility was too low.

From my own experience, it's not that impossible. Where I used to work, we had a contractor setup a machine in a horribly insecure way. The box was owned over the weekend, and when I got back to the office it was pretty much unfixable short of a full format. In addition, the filenames I did see before I wiped it were fairly disturbing.

So when you think about it, if your machine is owned, what is somebody going to do with it? The answer would be, "all sorts of things they wouldn't want to be caught doing with their own machine."

Now fast-forward to another event in my own life. I was at one time accused of shoplifting from a video store. The cop on the phone told me it was on camera, gave a description that could have well enough been me, and gave my license plate # as the vehicle identified. After a few days of trying to get things sorted out, and being constantly threatened by the police, I contacted the video store in question to see if the tape-in-question had been misplaced and not stolen. After talking to the manager, I found out that no tapes had been stolen at all, and that they never carried a tape by the name given (oh, and their cameras actually only monitor, not record). However, there was a file with the police, which I can only guess originated from somebody calling in a fake complaint.

It took the video-store owner calling the police dept up to get them to stop threatening me, and after that the calls just stopped (no apologies). If I hadn't called into the store to check on things myself, who knows how far it might have gone.

So if you're trusting the thoroughness of the legal system or the good sense of a jury to save your ass, think again. Even if you're innocent your life could still be ruined by a false accusation, a suspicion, or bad luck. When the police believe that you're guilty, they will come after you heatedly and often without regard for your potential innocence. The can lie to you, they can make your life miserable, and they aren't going to stop just because of some obscure "open wireless" defense.

You are not a Weblog. (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801497)

Because you are now a pile of smoking computer parts.

Lawyer? All you need is 12 people dumb enough... (0)

CBob (722532) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801531)

To fall for whatever they're told to.

There was a murder conviction here last week, with...

No witnesses
No body
No physical evidence

Remember kids, this is Jersey, the Wiretap State.

It works for civil law too.

Re:Lawyer? All you need is 12 people dumb enough.. (1)

jjohnson (62583) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801643)

What case was that? I suspect there's more to it than you're presenting here. Hans Reiser was convicted with no body, and everyone here was shrieking about how stupid the jury was. Then Hans led the police to the body.

What case was that? (1)

sirwired (27582) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801849)

I'm pretty curious about that too...

No eyewitnesses is pretty standard. (I am assuming that is what you meant, since every trial has some witnesses.)
No body is certainly no impediment for a murder conviction. If a murder conviction absolutely required a body, it would make it nearly impossible to convict any criminal with an IQ above 50. Disposing of a body isn't that tough.

However, convicting somebody with no evidence would be pretty bad.

SirWired

lawyers are the same as computer programmers (2, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801593)

they both work in a complex technical language

a programmer worth his salt knows most of the important classes and functions and syntax in a given language needed to get a programming task done, whether serving webpages or making an operating system run. a lawyer does exactly the same thing: he knows certain important case points, the usual range of legal maneuvers in case law, and the prevailing legal opinions, and he applies them to the given legal task at hand, whether criminal or civil

an ASP.NET C# programmer wouldn't jump in and start telling a C++ device driver how to do his work. with the same sort of humility in mind, techies really should learn a little more about the law before shooting their mouths off

Well, at least if you are not a lawyer . . . (2, Funny)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801669)

. . . you won't be among the first against the wall when The Revolution comes.

Hard skills, like hacking Perl scripts to keep The Leader supplied with porn, will trump soft skills, like litigating about microwaving poodles.

Beware . . . it IS coming . . .

Yes I am! (1)

Ryan Monster (767204) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801693)

Yes I am a lawyer. The Venn Diagram of techies and lawyers has at least *some* intersection.

Site's down, article text (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26801747)

Posted as AC so as not to karma whore:

Being Acquitted Versus Being Searched (YANAL)
By Paul Ohm - Posted on February 9th, 2009 at 6:45 am

With this post, I'm launching a new, (very) occasional series I'm calling YANAL, for "You Are Not A Lawyer." In this series, I will try to disabuse computer scientists and other technically minded people of some commonly held misconceptions about the law (and the legal system).

I start with something from criminal law. As you probably already know, in the American criminal law system, as in most others, a jury must find a defendant guilty "beyond a reasonable doubt" to convict. "Beyond a reasonable doubt" is a famously high standard, and many guilty people are free today only because the evidence against them does not meet this standard.

When techies think about criminal law, and in particular crimes committed online, they tend to fixate on this legal standard, dreaming up ways people can use technology to inject doubt into the evidence to avoid being convicted. I can't count how many conversations I have had with techies about things like the "open wireless access point defense," the "trojaned computer defense," the "NAT-ted firewall defense," and the "dynamic IP address defense." Many people have talked excitedly to me about tools like TrackMeNot or more exotic methods which promise, at least in part, to inject jail-springing reasonable doubt onto a hard drive or into a network.

People who place stock in these theories and tools are neglecting an important drawback. There are another set of legal standards--the legal standards governing search and seizure--you should worry about long before you ever get to "beyond a reasonable doubt". Omitting a lot of detail, the police, even without going to a judge first, can obtain your name, address, and credit card number from your ISP if they can show the information is relevant to a criminal investigation. They can obtain transaction logs (think apache or sendmail logs) after convincing a judge the evidence is "relevant and material to an ongoing criminal investigation." If they have probable cause--another famous, but often misunderstood standard--they can read all of your stored email, rifle through your bedroom dresser drawers, and image your hard drive. If they jump through a few other hoops, they can wiretap your telephone. Some of these standards aren't easy to meet, but all of them are well below the "beyond a reasonable doubt" standard for guilt.

So by the time you've had your Perry Mason moment in front of the jurors, somehow convincing them that the fact that you don't enable WiFi authentication means your neighbor could've sent the death threat, your life will have been turned upside down in many ways: The police will have searched your home and seized all of your computers. They will have examined all of the files on your hard drives and read all of the messages in your inboxes. (And if you have a shred of kiddie porn stored anywhere, the alleged death threat will be the least of your worries. I know, I know, the virus on your computer raises doubt that the kiddie porn is yours!) They will have arrested you and possibly incarcerated you pending trial. Guys with guns will have interviewed you and many of your friends, co-workers, and neighbors.

In addition, you will have been assigned an overworked public defender who has no time for far-fetched technological defenses and prefers you take a plea bargain, or you will have paid thousands of dollars to a private attorney who knows less than the public defender about technology, but who is "excited to learn" on your dime. Maybe, maybe, maybe after all of this, your lawyer convinces the judge or the jury. You're free! Congratulations?

The police and prosecutors run into many legal standards, many of which are much easier to satisfy than "beyond a reasonable doubt" and most of which are met long before they see an access point or notice a virus infection. By meeting any of these standards, they can seriously disrupt your life, even if they never end up putting you away.

I'm not? (2, Funny)

iamangry (1463943) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801773)

Hmm, yeah, I guess I forgot I wasn't a lawyer. I'm glad I have /. to keep track of these sorts of things for me. Thanks ./ !

How about a series to help lawyers understand (2, Interesting)

jackspenn (682188) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801835)

I will try to disabuse computer scientists and other technically minded people of some commonly held misconceptions about the law (and the legal system).

What about writing a series to explain to lawyers they are not technical. How many times do lawyers misunderstand technology? Furthermore, I would argue it is the fault of lawyers that common folks cannot represent or understand the legal system. Doesn't it make sense to write laws the majority of common people can understand? A better use of time would be a series for lawyers that explains why the importance of spending the time and energy to draft clean and clear laws.

Hans Reiser (2, Interesting)

jjohnson (62583) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801863)

Reiser is an excellent example of someone who should have had this explained to them. He thought he could get up on the stand and wave away a mountain of circumstantial evidence with implausible arguments that created (un)reasonable doubts.

"I removed the passenger seat so I could sleep in my car, not because it was covered in my wife's blood."

"But Mr. Reiser, after removing the seat, there's still a metal bar three inches off the floor that crosses the space. Are you telling us that you slept on that?"

"... Yes. Yes, I am."

"In a pool of water an inch deep?"

"I didn't say it was comfortable."

"Why was there water in the car?"

"I hosed out the interior."

"Why?"

"It was dirty after removing the passenger seat so I could sleep there."

I am not a lawyer, but my lawyer is. (3, Insightful)

zerofoo (262795) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801875)

OK, i'll bite.

I'm not a lawyer, I'm a computer scientist, but you can be damn sure that I'm going to give MY lawyer all the ammunition I can to defend me.

I'm going to have logs that "prove" I didn't do the crime.

I'm going to have "forensics" that "prove" my computers did not have the offending data in question.

I'm going to have hidden encrypted volumes 12-ways to Sunday - good luck getting to those without the NSA's help, or after my attorney tells me not to incriminate myself.

What most of my friends, who are attorneys, tell me is that law-enforcement is generally incompetent when it comes to investigating a case. Collecting evidence in a LEGAL manner is a complex and difficult process. These guys that barely made it out of the academy aren't lawyers and they will fuck it up. A good attorney will find a way to make the prosecution's evidence inadmissible.

Unfortunately, law is a complex thing. Gone are the days when the common man could defend himself. Today it's fight fire with fire.

-ted

Biggest part I got out of it was (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 5 years ago | (#26801917)

"You can really, really screw someone over by framing them with something illegal, even if the fabrications fall apart long before the standard of reasonable doubt." Isn't that pretty much what he's saying?

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...