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Taming the Web

michael posted more than 13 years ago | from the cisco-the-lion-tamer dept.

The Internet 365

Thomas writes: "A story on Technology Review outlines the closer-to-reality-than-you-think fact that Internet regulations are right around the corner. It points out three false hopes held by web 'libertarians.' 1. the web is too international to control. 2. the net is too interconnected to fence in. 3. the net is full of hackers that are impossible to control. This is a good read." Bingo.

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Bzzt (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2110001)

Both #1 and #2 rely on there being a centralized company to sue.

#3 relies on hardware measures. I'll buy no hardware with such, and if it comes down to no new hardware for sake of avoiding such, they'll be prying stuff from a lot of cold dead fingers.

And another point is the assumption that "the internet" is always going to be the primary way of connecting computers. Other technologies and channels outside of the net will emerge for communication. Laws will have to be written to explicitly regulate all communications between computers to encompass these additional channels which would require obviously draconian measures. Such laws have to be covertly applied and broad measures like that would be too obvious.

By the numbers (5, Insightful)

WillSeattle (239206) | more than 13 years ago | (#2111303)

OK, read the article. Yes, it's true, but it's also false.

First, my creds are longer than I care to think about, back in the dawn of time. And, no, I don't hack any longer, but all I'll say is, if I had, the statute of limitations is up.

Myth #1 The Net is too International to be Controlled

The Net, the totality of the Internet, is. The Web, the channel that our browsers serve up http and https and suchlike, is affected by our ISPs. We can still use TCP/IP and backchannel, go thru various ports - this part is still wild and wooly. Or we can stay safe inside AOL and MSN and their versions and it's controlled. It's like the Wild West - when you come into Dodge, they take your guns at the city limits. If you stick to the patrolled routes, it's fairly safe; if you wander off into the badlands, it's not.

Myth #2 The Net is to Interconnected to Control

See above. While you can route around censorship and damage, this requires active or passive participation by someone. So long as bastions of freedom exist, so long as encyrpted channels go through, this will continue to exist. But the rest can be partially controlled.

Myth #3 The Net is Too Filled with Hackers to Control

So long as we reward hackers with publicity and teens have very little to lose and don't care about it, this will always be true. If they suddenly fear being caught, it will increase some people's activity and scare off others. So, this is mostly true.

But, in sum, it all comes down to this:

The Net is the Perception, Not the Reality.

So long as people believe in the above tenets, it will self-perpetuate. If they lose faith, it will change. Just as the founders of America believed in press freedom but favored other restrictions - remember the 50s, that teen gang era, eventually followed by the 80s.

hrmn (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2114597)

A Texan went to Chicago and thought he would buy a new "city" outfit. He went into Marshall Fields and when asked by a sweet young woman if she could help him, answered, "Yes ma'am, ya see, I'm from Texas and I want to buy a complete outfit." Well, her eyes lit up as she asked, "Where would you like to start?"

"Well ma'am, how about a suit?"
"Yes sir, what size?"
"Size 53 ... tall, ma'am."

Re:hrmn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2137807)

A Texan went to Chicago and thought he would buy a new "city" outfit. He went into Marshall Fields and when asked by a sweet young woman if she could help him, answered, "Yes ma'am, ya see, I'm from Texas and I want to buy a complete outfit." Well, her eyes lit up as she asked, "Where would you like to start?"

"Well ma'am, how about a suit?"
"Yes sir, what size?"
"Size 53 ... tall, ma'am."
"Wow, that's really big."
"Yes ma'am, they really grow them big in Texas."

"What's next?" she asked.
He replied, "How about some shoes."
"What size?"
"Size 15 ... double D."
"Wow, that's really big!"
"Yes ma'am, they really grow them big in Texas."

"What's next?"
"Well, I reckon I'll need a shirt."
"Yes sir, what size?"
"Nineteen and a half ... 38," he replied.
"Wow, that's really big!"
"Yes ma'am, they really grow them big in Texas."

She virtually glowed as she asked, "Whew ... is there anything else I can do for you?"
"No ma'am , I reckon that will be all."
Well she tallied up his bill while the Texan was counting out his money. She asked, "Sir could I ask you a question?"
"Yes ma'am, I already know what it is and the answer is four inches."
She is astonished and blurts out, "Why, my boyfriend is bigger than that!"

Without so much as a stutter, the Texan replied, "Across ma'am"

Re:hrmn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2146516)

I don't get it. But then, being a guy who just made fp with a stupid bastardization of a mediocre joke, much can't be expected of me. Or from me. See, I don't even know English well.

(The moderation on that fp was lightning fast BTW, I wonder if there's some sort of automation to it?)

Re:hrmn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2157019)

is that supposed to be a joke?

it's not in carriers interest to regulate (1)

DrSkwid (118965) | more than 13 years ago | (#2114857)

Carriers know what traffic pays their bills, they have logs of all the protocols that they can muster. They analise them and then try to cash in on those services.

I think in this story the author is confusing copyright theft and freedom.

He Who Controls The Pipes... (3, Interesting)

Dr. Dew (219113) | more than 13 years ago | (#2120275)

As long as you don't own the pipes, you can't rely on being able to pump anything you want through them. The bad news is that with many smaller ISPs having been failed, abandoned, and made obsolete by the bigger/higher bandwidth players, many of us don't even have the ability to vote with dollars, except to forego Internet connection entirely. As if.

So it's not as easy as switching providers. And unless you live in a cell block or a row house, connecting your system via your own pipes isn't much of an option. Okay, not even in the cell block. Maybe wireless technologies will help ameliorate this, but at the moment, I wouldn't want to transmit anything to my buddies using the high-speed wireless data transmission technologies readily available to me.

But I disagree that geeks should stop fighting "rules" and restrictive legislation out of fear of causing a clamp-down effect. Those who are skilled and interested should work toward sensible legislation (if such a thing exists). The demise of technocrat.net is one indication to me that such skills are rare in the geek community. The average R&D meeting is another such indication.

I have more hope that as geeks continue to occupy influential positions in Corporate America and other industrialized nations, that the geek ethic will get a voice that matters to someone besides geeks. With due respect to Richard Stallman, the CTO at any company I've worked for has far more influence on the corporate direction - and the limits of corporate expectations - than any outside voice.

But hey, I could be wrong, and I'm sure I'll find doubleplusgood travel arrangements on WorldOnline2010 (a wholly-owned subsidiary of AOL/Time-Warner/Daimler-Chrysler/Philip Morris/Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati).

The dangers of homogenous network hardware (1)

SumDeusExMachina (318037) | more than 13 years ago | (#2120672)

Just as it has been shown that there are inherent dangers in having homogenous desktop and server operating systems (witness Code Red and Sircam), it is important that no one vendor's hardware and software control a majority of the internet. Cisco is a single entity, and they can pretty much do as they please as long as they have a huge majority of the market in networking hardware.

Perhaps we should have more use of Linux in routing hardware, as it both runs on commodity hardware like the x86 architecture and it is blazing fast in its networking code. Surely it is nicer in the operating system market to be able to use an OS such as Linux that is unencumbered by patents, battles over which mega-corp controls the desktop icons, and is not controlled by one single entity.

After all, no one ever got fired for replacing Cisco with Linux on x86, as I still have my job and the data center has never been better ever since we stopped shelling out huge amounts of cash for expensive Cisco hardware and expensive routing software.

And the alternative is? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2122050)

And exactly what is the alternative to letting the Internet have it's chance again?

As long as I can connect... (5, Informative)

cr0sh (43134) | more than 13 years ago | (#2122056)

As long as I can connect two computers together, the internet will exist...

For me, it started with a null modem serial cable strung between two TRS-80 Color Computers, so that I could "share" the single floppy drive I had.

I quickly moved to a 300 baud modem - and I suddenly had a whole new world at my fingertips.

Later came a 2400 baud modem, a 14.4, a 28.8. BBS's all over town - the city - Fidonet - across America, and in some cases, around the world.

I messed around with connections over telephone wire, building funky parallel port bit-bangers, to create a po-man's networking system.

Now I have a personal network inside my house - cobbled together from parts and pieces the corps didn't want - picked off the scrap pile of electronic hubris...

I hear talk of 802.11 - lasercomm - radiocomm - it is in the air. Hackers will do it. Fidonet will be recreated.

What are they to do? Regulate radio - oops, they already do! Regulate 2.4GHz - yep, that will come. Regulate sell of lasers? That could happen, too. Regulate light making devices? Perhaps.

Maybe I will then hack together a system that only transmits/recieves during the daytime, using mirrors to reflect the sun over long distances, to be received and converted using homemade selenium photocells (and yes - I know how to make them). Regulate mirrors?

Then I will stand on the roof of my house - and shout to the heavens, and my friend beyond, who will relay my message. It may be slow - but to shut me up, you will have to kill me.

KILL ME, DAMMIT! DO YOU FUCKING UNDERSTAND, YOU GODDAMN FUCKING CORPORATE GOVERNMENT MACHINE?!

/end...fucking...rant>

Freenet - dodging the issue (4, Interesting)

Sanity (1431) | more than 13 years ago | (#2122058)

He goes to great lengths to point out why Napster and Gnutella are easy to shut down (duh, they weren't really designed for that kind of attack), but then glibly dismisses Freenet because only pornographers are using it, and it doesn't support "searching". Clearly he hasn't read the FAQ.

Even if you believed that Freenet has *no* userbase, and that it is still so incomplete that nobody can use it, the simple fact that it exists and he doesn't (can't?) present a way to shut it down, refutes his argument. As has been pointed out elsewhere, even if ISPs placed restrictions on usable ports, Freenet can easily be persuaded to tunnel over other ports.

Of course, you should never let the facts get in the way of a good story...

Myth #4 (5, Funny)

Illserve (56215) | more than 13 years ago | (#2123712)

Our html coders know how to make a series of links between a sequence webpages.

Re:Myth #4 (1)

Lozzer (141543) | more than 13 years ago | (#2145803)

Was it a coincidence that it happened at the page that meant to link Hackers (supposedly a myth)

MOD Chips (3, Interesting)

skyknytnowhere (469520) | more than 13 years ago | (#2123713)

He comments that hackers won't be able to come and sodder a hardware workaround... Well he is absolutely and blatantly wrong. for $6 I can have the kid next door modchip my PS1. most of that money pays him for the sodder.

For the PS2 I can go to my local game store, and for $30 (most for the warranty on the chip) they will do it. THAT is convenience.

Hackers will break through any hardware lock as easily as software locks. Why? Because unlimited free time will always beat limited paid time.

skye

Re:MOD Chips (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2153758)

It's spelled "solder". Poor man, you're yet another example of the fallacy of the hooked on phonics method of learning to read.

Well, Eberhard's Rocket eBook was cracked (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2123714)

guy got bored, so he went in, bypassed the security features [wired.com] , etc.

Even though this was a device that only connected to the Gemstar severs via a modem.

So, you know. Guess the author was right. Can't stop technology and regulation.

Sigh.

Classic (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2125538)

Well considering that using the word hacker [tuxedo.org] when you mean cracker [tuxedo.org] is a classic sign of a clueless journalists, and articles that are not supposed to be informative, but are instead supposed to invoke fear, anger, and a general statist attitude regarding every other issue facing the world, I will read this some other time. :-)

Re:Classic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2156672)

Or maybe its just a sign of another anal-retentive geek set on everyone having the same vocabulary as him.

Re:Classic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2156751)

Well, considering that the definition I linked to is from the MIT jargon file, and that MIT was the first place "hacker" was used in a technical sense, I would say that I am using the *correct* definition, as given by the *originators* of the word.

I don't know how people manage to insist that there is still a question as to whether or not hacker means someone who breaks security. Look it up, from the people who *originated* the term.

Not to mention that this is supposed to be a *technical* article regarding the *Internet*. So even if your comment about "nerds" and ordinary citizens using two different definitions for the word hacker is correct, the journalist still should have used the "nerd" definition.

It is because of people like you that I can not read articles entitled "Kernel Hacking" etc, without getting dirty looks.

Re:Classic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2138696)

Is MIT a church? Is the jargon file a bible? Because you sound like a Christian trying to shove your ideology down our throats. Screw you asshole!

Re:Classic (0)

hypergreatthing (254983) | more than 13 years ago | (#2156806)

cracker?.. as in a small bread biscuitt?

Nice try. (5, Insightful)

Mike Schiraldi (18296) | more than 13 years ago | (#2125539)

The result, in Ballon's view, is easy to foresee: "At a certain point, the studios and labels and publishers will send over lists of things to block to America Online, and 40 percent of the country's Net users will no longer be able to participate in Gnutella. Do the same thing for EarthLink and MSN, and you're drastically shrinking the pool of available users."

While people will put up with crappy service and high bills, if you take away their MP3s and porn, they will take their business elsewhere. If AOL and MSN started blocking MP3 trading, and Earthlink ran another round of "We don't spy on you or control you" commercials, they'd grab huge chunks of their competitors' former customers.

Indeed, the governments of China and Saudi Arabia have successfully pursued a similar strategy for political ends.

That's because it's harder to leave your country than it is to switch ISPs. Well, maybe only slightly harder. :)

Re:Nice try. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2123155)

There was once an old man and a parrot living all alone together for like 40 years. One day, the parrot came to the old man and said, "you know, I've never had a woman in my life."

So the old man, as a favour to his best friend, went to the pet store and talked the owner into letting him use a female parrot for one night for the fee of 40 dollars.

He took the female home, put it into the cage with his parrot, covered the cage and went to bed. He was awoken in the middle of the night to the female parrot screaming she was being killed. He ran out and pulled the cover off the cage. There he saw his male parrot ripping all the feathers off of the female.

"What are you doing?" the old man screamed.

The parrot replied, "Are you kidding, for 40 dollars, I at least want the bitch naked!"

Re:Nice try. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2156670)

Except earthlink is run by the fucking scientologists and they ARE spying on you believe me ... Im on their shit list and when I was on earthlink I received 3 - 5 kiddy porn adds a day via email and ICQ (they were trying to entrap me). I switched to verizion, the adds stoped THAT DAY and I haven't had anymore in 3 months (same ICQ#, same e-mail addressess).

Lessig, Litman, and Schneier (2, Interesting)

gizmo_mathboy (43426) | more than 13 years ago | (#2125540)

This story just brings up the problems and issues written about by Lawrence Lessig in Code [amazon.com] . This primarily revolved around the notion that unless the users (hackers, lusers, slashdotters, everyone) take an active part in how the laws and code are shaped then big business and government will do it form them.

Jessica Litman's excellent book,Digital Copyright [amazon.com] , details how copyright law was shaped without the users being present. Sort of a glimpse into what could happen to the Internet

Bruce Schneier's Secrets and Lies [amazon.com] goes into depth concerning how techonological solutions are permanent (which I think refutes some of the article's notion concerning Myth #3).

What is needed is involvement at any level we can afford. The more that users are involved in any endeavor that involves them the better, generally, that endeavor does.

Filtering & Hardware (0)

mahtaaaain (465399) | more than 13 years ago | (#2128925)

It will be harder for 'them' to just focus on the mainstream consumer market when they want to do a little hardware programming, since the slowdown in computer purchasing (lately) would make a solution like that a little harder to realize, as one would have to get its customers to get a firmware or something along those lines. An easier solution (heh, well, mebbe not) would be to implement something like that in all the routers/servers, but again, one would have to wait awhile until everyone needed a new router, and I don't think the Apache folks will be building anything like that into their software anytime soon either ;P

Bye bye web.... (5, Funny)

letchhausen (95030) | more than 13 years ago | (#2128928)

I always said that this so-called "Internet" was just a fad that, once regulations were in place, would go away. No porn, no web, no kidding. Fuck the pigs, trying to control our lives....as a friend pointed out to me recently, John Locke said that the state should never put itself into the business of protecting citizens from themselves. And of course there's the old Ben Franklin saw that those who would trade liberty for security deserve neither. Looks like it's police state time for Amerika. I wouldn't be so down if it wasn't for the fact that so many people are so stupid that they would check into the Matrix hotel as the ultimate gated community. What happens to Neo and Morpheus when they wake people up and get to be as stunned as Randall P. McMurphy when the people tell them that they checked themselves in voluntarily....

taming .. not too sure,but then again.. (1)

hebertrich (472331) | more than 13 years ago | (#2129377)

Laws in a country that makes people who act legally in their countries,all of a sudden become criminals to be arrested in the USA just go too far.But that's what people get for not reacting and being active to voice their opinions.As long as the people have a government for the people ,by the corporations for the corporations,things will only get worse. You can't expect that anything will be voted that will be in the public's interrest.Look at the latest White House decisions.Corp's 10 People 0 .Even drilling in the Alaskan wildlife refuge has been permitted by the President of the people for the corporations ,and the heck with the people who elected me Bush. What is really needed is a tidal wave in politics,where people will get back what should have been theirs al along. The control of politicians. I elect a guy ..i pay him a salary to solve problems for me. Not to cause me some or delay solving them. Not to be the puppet of a few companies that paid him his campaign secretary. And as long as it's the way the campaings work ,we'll keep being ruled by corporations and their representatives,be at the mercy of private laws and laws made to control us. The net free of control ? maybe not but then again who is going to stand up and try to get elected to change things at next election ? : )

Re:taming .. not too sure,but then again.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2145233)

Next time someone offers you a funny-looking cigarette, Just Say No.

A little misleading ... (1)

LL (20038) | more than 13 years ago | (#2130889)

The claim that international rogue commercial elements (corporations of concern) is irrelevant is a little disingeneous as the real point is that any place which requires large-scale infrastructure will usually be located in a developed country (techs who operate multi-million dollar backbones and data centres don't get born in Siberia) which usually is reachable from other developed countries, either legally, cutting cables or last resort of nuking them back to the stone age. Economically this is the basic barrier to entry which doesn't work in the early stages of a technology paradigm shift (did the telcos see the ISPs taking off?). If someone combines the equivalent of napster with individual wireless (as compared to cell-towers), are you going to have the BSA confiscating every antenna or PDA they see?

The second claim of the network being resilient is actually a two edged sword, bringing social intrusion of foreign laws, spam and generally lower signal-noise ratios. As more devices/software interact in increasigly complicated ways, predictability is going to appeal to consumers which means the path of least resistence will be followed. As other people have discovered, frankly there's not much interest in communicating with clueless dweebs outside professional or social circles which means that ultimately the human network is self-limiting. I believe the statistic is that we can keep track of ~200 odd names/faces.

The claim that the hackers is irrelevant is only true if you consider life from a VC point of view ... if you're betting on a proprietary technology and are willing to put the marketing dollars behind it, then at best hackers are a semi-persistant nuisance (as evidenced by the European satellite TV). However, studies have also shown that economic growth is highly dependent on exogeneous factors, primarily technology. Hackers, as free agents, can scratch their own itches as they have both the talent (probably) and time (hopefully) creating new applications where people didn't realise they would want that product/service/etc. Did anyone have a focus group to discover Hypercard or Visicalc? Would Counterstrike have been supported in a corporate lab? Would the next RMS introduce a philosophy or Linus-to-be implement casually an idea which changes how you live? While the individual footprint of hackers may be neglibible, the feet of a thousand penguins can lead to surprising destinations.

LL

Can't Control the Web... (3, Insightful)

jhaberman (246905) | more than 13 years ago | (#2131658)

... Tell that to users in China or Afganistan. The government actively shuts down ISP's and terminates all connections to "undesireable" sites. Once big brother becomes involved, personal liberties go right out the window. And don't try to tell me that "it could never happen here". Think again. You mean to tell me that if some alphabetic government agency or powerful international corporation started putting MASSIVE pressure on backbone providers to shut down... (enter offending matter here - Movies - MP3 - p0rn)... they couldn't get action?

Sure... most of us would raise hell. But if they withstood? Then we're the ones who get screwed.

Think about it.

Jason

What about Morpheus? (3, Informative)

nougatmachine (445974) | more than 13 years ago | (#2132903)

The article mentions that Gnutella is moving to larger servers to facilitate traffic, and this makes these servers prime targets for shutting down, thus slowing the networks. But what about Morpheus [musiccity.com] ? This company licenses the same technology as KaZaA (but without the spyware), which lets broadband users serve as intermediate "super-nodes" which will automatically have more queries passed along, if I understand right. I might have gotten that detail wrong as I'm not very familiar with the technology, but the point is that Morpheus automatically sorts the bandwidth for you, and presumably does not rely on a centralized server while still giving adquete performance. The webpage also claims that information on the network is "encrypted", but not many details are given.

I think this kind of thing would be pretty hard to police.

Re:What about Morpheus? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2146714)

WTF? Morpheus's website is a blank page.

And you though it would be hard to police, it's doomed already.

Um. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2136801)

Connect this with the fact the general purpose PC may be dying, and what you have is a pretty grim vision of the future... we'll all be just connected to a shinyhappy ad-laden corporate network through ATM-like dumb terminals. :-/

Explain this one to me... (1)

napir (20855) | more than 13 years ago | (#2138217)

"Even if Freenet does not end up in the crowded graveyard of vaporware, Internet service providers can always pull the plug--treating Freenet, in essence, as an unsupported feature, in the way that many providers today do not support telnet, Usenet and other less popular services. " This statement doesn't seem to make any sense. Unlike Usenet, use of Freenet doesn't require your ISP to run a centralised server for support. I assume the writer of the article means that ISPs don't allow use of telnet to check mail via pine, etc, so the same applies. The only way an ISP could feasibly block use of Freenet that I see is to drop packets that look like Freenet packets. But that doesn't seem to be what the writer implies. Is there an interpretation of this that I'm missing?

Re:Explain this one to me... (1)

IcebergSlim (450399) | more than 13 years ago | (#2126825)


No. I don't think you're missing anything.

The very essence of P2P is that the questionable data is decentralized, and therefore immune to an ISP simply "pulling the plug" on it. Gnutella, for example, is just a protocol which allows for the query, request for, and sending of files to users. Like you said, the only way to stop it is to block those packets or to disallow traffic to port 6346, which is what my Gnotella client uses. And if they do that, then people will simply change the protocol and client/server apps slightly to get around it. The downfall of those attempting to regulate things like this is that what they do will ALWAYS BE REACTIVE IN NATURE.

Just my thoughts.

Re:Explain this one to me... (2)

Lozzer (141543) | more than 13 years ago | (#2156674)

The only thing I can think of is that your ISP doesn't allow any initial SYN packets through to you. This would make you only capable of being a client. If enough ISPs banded together to they could conceivably restrict the majority of iternet connected people this way.

I'd like to think that economics would rear its head at this point and supply of server allowed connections would appear to fit the demand gap. (A lot of online games rely on peer to peer for example)

Even more draconian, imagine legislation in this area. Maybe people would need a (government) server license to run tcp listeners.

Even more scary, this would stop a lot of trojans that set up listeners...

Time for sleep

Re:Explain this one to me... (1)

mdouglas (139166) | more than 13 years ago | (#2132905)

>The only thing I can think of is that your ISP doesn't allow any initial SYN packets through to you. This would make you only capable of being a client

permit tcp any any established would certainly be a bummer; however, most dsl/cable modem users already have their capacity to be a server kneecapped via asychronous connection speeds. 640k downstream vs 128k upstream. makes it easier to keep the users as passive recipients of "content"; public participation is actively discouraged.

Err... (4, Insightful)

mindstrm (20013) | more than 13 years ago | (#2141062)

My 'false hopes' revolve around the fact that I can connect one computer to another, somehow, without what I do being filtered, no matter what. So can anyone else, and so we eventually get the internet.

Pundits can argue all they want that it won't stay that way.. but it will.

Re:Err... (1)

Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) | more than 13 years ago | (#2125541)

My 'false hopes' revolve around the fact that I can connect one computer to another, somehow, without what I do being filtered, no matter what. So can anyone else, and so we eventually get the internet.

Unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your point of view, that's not true. Unless you, and you alone, are the only person required to make that link, and you control all of the technology required to do it, you rely on someone else. It might be an ISP. It might be a telephone company. It might be the guy who laid the trans-Atlantic cables. But you rely on someone. That someone can stop you.

Re:Err... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2120051)

A 60 year old woman came home one day and heard strange noises in her bedroom. She opened the door and discovered her 40 year old daughter playing with a vibrator.

"What are you doing?" asked the mother.
"Mom, I'm 40 years old and look at me. I'm ugly. I'll never get married, so this is pretty much my husband." The mother walked out of the room, shaking her head.

The next day, the father came home and heard noises in the bedroom and upon entering the room, found his daughter using the vibrator.
"What the hell are you doing?" he asked.
His daughter replied, "I already told Mom. I'm 40 years old now and ugly. I will never get married, so this is as close as I'll ever get to a husband." The father walked out of the room shaking his head.

The next day, the mother came home to find her husband with a beer in one hand and the vibrator in the other, watching a football game on TV. "What on earth are you doing?" she cried.

The husband replied, "What does it look like I'm going? I'm having a beer and watching football with my son-in-law!"

Re:Err... (3, Interesting)

Bonker (243350) | more than 13 years ago | (#2152876)

The point he was trying to make is that the 'internet' has the ability to reemerge, even if it is censored into non-existance.

Yes, currently most of use rely on some form of corporate-owned copper infrastructure for our internet feeds. This is in the form of cable, phone, and DSL-based ISP's and telcos. It doesn't have to be this way...

A growing number of internet users are setting up lans based entirely on wireless networks, using wireless protocols. Other users are setting up infrared shots. IR shots were very popular in a dorm I visited once that 'prohbited' unauthorized computer LANS. If the RA couldn't see cable, there was no LAN, despite the fact that a massive amount of file-sharing and gaming was going on behind his back.

Also, there are projects in place that effectively protect 'forbidden' information over those connections that are too convenient to abandon in the form of FreeNet and Gnutella, which the author of the original article mentioned, and then seemed to completely ignore.
Is the government going to outlaw private lans or wireless? They could, but we'd just find another way to get around it. It's very difficult to detect low-power, tight beam microwave, which is already in use in some wireless projects.

I agree with the root poster here. Unless the government takes our computers away, they can't take the internet away either.

Re:Err... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2129760)

A husband feeling a bit horny goes to the bathroom and returns with 4 aspirin and a glass of water for his wife.
He says, "Here honey, here are some aspirin and a some water."
She replied, "but honey I do not have a headache!"
He replied, "Thank God!"

Re:Err... (1)

ZeroConcept (196261) | more than 13 years ago | (#2156671)

One word: Tunneling!
As long as you can hide information within information...It's posible.

Re:Err... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2111197)

Paddy and his two friends are talking at work. His first friend says: "I think my wife is having an affair with the electrician. The other day I came home and found wire cutters under our bed and they weren't mine."

His second friend says:"I think my wife is having an affair with the plumber the other day I found a wrench under the bed and it wasn't mine."

Paddy says:"I think my wife is having an affair with a horse."

Both his friends look at him with utter disbelief.
"No I'm serious. The other day I came home and found a jockey under our bed."

Re:Err... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2122687)

And when the law says that you can't use this or that encryption, what are you gonna do?

Worse yet, when the law says that internet traffic can run only on ports x,y and z, and that all core routers will block all other types of traffic, what are you gonna do?

Wake up, it's already happening.

Re:Err... (4, Insightful)

isorox (205688) | more than 13 years ago | (#2156715)

So it starts again, with bbs's, then a couple of nearby bbs's link with a cat 5 cable, or a leased line, or a wireless ethernet. Eventually qwehave comletely free network of wireless networks across the city, linked to other cities by modem links. The modems get upgraded, people co-locate near the gateways to other cities and countries, and we have a whole new internet. Then the government regulates it again and we're back to square 1.

Re:Err... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2111329)

One day there were four nuns in line for confessional.
The first nun said, "Forgive me, father, for I have sinned."
He asked how.
She said "I saw a man's private part." He told her to wash her eyes with holy water.
The second nun comes in and says, "Forgive me, father, for I have sinned."
He asked how.
"I touched a man's private parts." He told her to wash her hands in holy water.
Then he heard the third and fourth nun fighting. He asked why they were fighting.
The fourth nun said, "I'm not going to wash my mouth in the holy water if she is going to sit in it."

Re:Err... (5, Insightful)

3247 (161794) | more than 13 years ago | (#2136260)

"So it starts again, with bbs's, then a couple of nearby bbs's link with a cat 5 cable, or a leased line, or a wireless ethernet."

"Someone who does this is obviously interested in illegal activities. So we have to make it illegal to build networks that are not under the supervision of a trusted provider."

Re:Err... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2156695)

Three Boy Scouts, a lawyer, a priest, and a pilot are in a plane that is about to crash.
The pilot says "Well, we only have 3 parachutes, let's give them to the 3 Boy Scouts. They are young and have their whole lives in front of them"
The lawyer says "Fuck the Boy Scouts!"
The priest says, "Do we have time?"

fucking niggers (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2141064)

I hate you fucking niggers!!

oh, by the way: First Racist Post!

The Internet Will Never Be Successfully Regulated (-1, Troll)

Kiss The Sp0rk (447455) | more than 13 years ago | (#2141070)

It is folly to attempt to regulate the Internet. Look at the facts:

- The internet has been around for more than two decades, during which time it has managed to elude being regulated in any meaningful way, anywhere in the world.
- The internet stretches across national boundaries. For regulation to be successfully carried out, an international body would need to be involved.
- Now that we have web servers in space, even international bodies will be powerless to censor the internet.
- The skills of hackers and crackers will summarily overcome any attempts by government to lock-down the internet. If hackers can infiltrate the most secure military computers of the greatest nation on earth, how will the US, but more especially, the rest of the world, ever regulate the internet?

The facts are there. Attempts to regulate the web will always fail. The internet is new and different, PERIOD! Those who would attempt to govern it in the current, obsolete way are forever doomed to disappointment.

Re:The Internet Will Never Be Successfully Regulat (3, Insightful)

jayhawk88 (160512) | more than 13 years ago | (#2121168)

Your probably just trolling, but here goes anyway:

The internet has been around for more than two decades...

It's been around for 2 decades, but has only recently been recognized as something more than the worlds largest geek toy, largely ignored by the rest of the world. Big business on the Internet is still in its infancy, but you'd better believe that if it continues to grow like it has, laws and regulations will follow.

The internet stretches across national boundaries

Read the article, they actually address this argument. It doesn't matter if I setup a Napster server in Timbuktu if the RIAA can cut off my one-and-only access point to the outside world.

Now that we have web servers in space

Show me a timeframe for getting a robust, stable, viable Net Sanctuary Space Station, and I'll show you an Internet that has long since been beaten down by Evil Big Business (tm).

TROLL!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2126815)

Your probably just trolling, but here goes anyway

That is the classic gambit of the troll: accuse the other person of trolling. I can't believe the moderators fell for it and modded you up.

Re:The Internet Will Never Be Successfully Regulat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2122057)

Did you even bother to read the article? GEEZ, what a maroon!

fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2141722)

Ceci n'est pas une first post.

Re:fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2146491)

Tu madre es muy bien con leche!!?!@?!?@!#!?#$

We want the information to be free.. (1)

samantha (68231) | more than 13 years ago | (#2143659)

Whether information is relatively free or not depends on the intent and focused efforts of ourselves. If we believe that some or all types of information need to be free and open to increase the well-being of ourselves and others then we need to lobby, demonstrate, create and spread memes and so on to that effect. The article makes the good point that information does not inherently want to be free and the internet will not inherently guarantee it is free. It leaves open the question of whether we the people want it to be free and what we can do about it if we do.

Thus, M$ Said: We'll Save the Day (1)

robbyjo (315601) | more than 13 years ago | (#2144805)

As Robert Cringley pointed out [pbs.org] : M$ would say: I will save your day! I will eliminate anonymous surfing and all things in the net will be completely identifiable. All your info are belong to me! Har har har

However, here is the rebuttal:

1. Myth #1: The Internet Is Too International to Be Controlled.

He says everything is sniffable through tracerouter and sniffer.

Rebuttal: That's true. What about if you are connected through firewall that will translate your address. I doubt that tracerouter or sniffer would be able to do their job properly.
He says the privacy international law will sooner or later be ratified in every country.

That's true. However, for software sharing: Not all country accept the idea of software patents. See how Europe rejects it. Even more, countries in Asia or other developing country saw this as a tool to hinder them to acquire technology. See how pirated softwares are floating down there (>90%). Thus, those government will half-heartedly fight sofware piracy.

For music/video sharing: Especially in poor countries, they have no broadband connection. Thus, it is rather pointless downloading megs of movies/songs meanwhile there are lots of pirated CDs/videos sold freely in cheap price (mostly about $3). Anyone who have visited Indonesia, Hongkong and Malaysia know that. So, the government effort to curbing the piracy on the net would be pretty much futile.

Myth #2: The Net Is Too Interconnected to Control

He says: the claims for peer-to-peer's uncontrollability don't take into consideration how computers interact in the real world; a network that is absolutely decentralized is also absolutely dysfunctional.

Hmm... that's true, especially for the Net, we have some DNS "authority". However this authoritarian approach does not restrict the few "access provider" as you said in Gnutella case. Let's say you shut down the "prominent ones" in the so called hierarchy. You still cannot stop anyone to build another "service provider". Right? See the Verisign and ICANN case. Moreover, if the top level node in the hierarchy is shut down, it doesn't mean that there is no other way to reconnect the "lost node" since the nodes are redundantly interconnected.

Your argument in slow request is not an issue. Eventhough the broadband speed is not helping (your claim), I am sure that the speed of these lies on how speedily the routing algorithm performs. AFAIK, those file sharing programs just employs flooding technique, which is simple to implement, but very slow. IF some people come up with a smarter version, it would be the "doomsday" for "censorarian". Even more if the routing algorithm is designed to be "self healing"

Myth #3: The Net Is Too Filled with Hackers to Control

You said: Identification System will cure this.

It's true. But: Nobody can stop anyone from spoofing their identification. Even the identification scheme itself can be broken. Anyone have heard how hackers cracked WinXP WPA [theregister.co.uk] ? That's a preliminary effort _before_ the product was shipped.

Hardware identification method? You mean NIC address is used for identification? Wahahah... even those 15-year-old hacker can do MAC address spoofing.

Moreover, it needs the whole world to cooperate to do non-anonymous internet access to be able to block those "libertarians". It's hard, if not impossible. Not all countries will comply. Then, the non-compliant countries will be blocked from the rest of the internet? Simply infeasible... unless the TCP/MS scheme by Cringley really worked as described...

#include<This rebuttal is not perfect.h>

#include<IANAL.h>

#include<Just my 2c.h>

Looks like a very uninformd piece (2)

Alex Belits (437) | more than 13 years ago | (#2145933)

It describes, what corporations and governments want or doing in their attempts to control the Internet, but we know this already. The problem is, it doesn't contain any plausible reasons why those attempts can possibly be successful.

Solution? (1, Redundant)

BluedemonX (198949) | more than 13 years ago | (#2146492)

Fire off satellites into the skies, using a collaboration of various phreaks and hax0r types as well as disgruntled rocket engineers and freethinkers. Put em in geostationary orbit. Sell send/receive dishes to send/receive IPv6 (sp?) over the airwaves.

Try backhoe cutting that connection, or suing space.

Of course, the US government could shoot em all down, but... it appears to me to be the only way to avoid the legal hassles...

Re:Solution? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2141063)

Two buddies were sharing drinks while discussing their wives. "Do you and your wife ever do it doggie style?" asked the one.
"Well, not exactly." his friend replied, "she's more into the trick dog aspect of it."
"Oh, I see, kinky, huh?"
"Well, not exactly - I sit up and beg and she rolls over and plays dead."

What about ping time? (1)

orionpi (318587) | more than 13 years ago | (#2145947)

While IPv6 does support long ping times, I don't thing your people would put up 0.238745 s to there ping time per hop!

Hypocrisy (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2146515)

Michael's one to bitch about anyone controlling or censoring the web, after what he did to censorware.org.

Michael is the wrong person to be posting Your Rights Online stories, considering what he did there.

I'd have to disagree... (1)

Rkane (465411) | more than 13 years ago | (#2146835)

...with the author's conclusion that peer-to-peer networks can be "fenced in." Yes, AOL/MSN/Earthlink can block access to known Bearshare backbone servers, and yes that may be detrimental to the speed of those users searches. However, that doesn't cut them completely off. It seems to me that this would simply slow down searches (forcing them to move at the speed of the slowest user connected) but not completely remove all functionality. Peer-to-peer advocates seem to have the stronger side of this right now, but the packet headers do show promise on the side of controlling things.

Internet Wiretapping (2)

karb (66692) | more than 13 years ago | (#2152877)

I've actually been thinking about this for a while ... remember the big outbreak on /. a while ago about the proposed IETF (I think) standard to allow wiretapping? It was shot down, and there were many self-backpats, because we had shown The Man Who's Boss.

Unfortunately, The Man still needs to fight crime (and, if he tried not to, how the heck would he explain this to his sometimes-boss, The People?), hence, Carnivore, developed by the FBI, something that we probably find far more unappetizing than a community-built standard.

The Media Pack (1)

valtok (240833) | more than 13 years ago | (#2153657)

This very same topic was covered in the Economist. (As an aside- this just reaffirms my belief that the media moves as a pack, or a mob of humans. Very often, stories I see in some places (the NY Times for example) show up later in other newspapers, then radio and TV.) http://www.economist.com/opinion/displayStory.cfm? Story_ID=730089 The Internet's new borders Aug 9th 2001 'Geographical lines and locations are increasingly being imposed on the Internet. Is this good or bad?'

Good paper... (1)

telbij (465356) | more than 13 years ago | (#2153692)

I think this paper outlines very important ideas that all geeks (particularly network engineers) shoudl keep in mind.

My argument is that with the kind of global communication we have today, the will of the people can no longer be subdued. While it is true that if we become complacent in our rich American lives then government and corporations can herd us into a small box with a bright light, it is also true that repression leads to revolution.

To prevent government and corporations from gaining a stranglehold on the Internet, I think steps should be taken to limit their control.

First off it would be nice to see some kind of non-profit/publicly owned organization building high capacity networks so that large telecoms can't suddenly control us through control of the backbone.

But I think the main thing is education. As geeks we are naturally drawn to knowledge and critical thinking, but not always to teaching and communication. I think it is our duty to let the people around us (particularly those making decisions) about potential damages to our freedom.

Big corporations and governments wield a lot of power, and it can be scary, but remember that all power comes from the people, and even people in big corporations are mostly individuals who value their freedom.

Very simple (2)

bartle (447377) | more than 13 years ago | (#2153784)

There will never be a way to restrict the access of information totally, a single Slashdot brainstorming session could come up with enough bizarre hacks to keep us safe for quite a while. What has freaked the companies out is how easy it is for the common person to gain access to copyrighted materials. And that's exactly how far things are going to be pushed; when the computers people buy in stores can't be made to easily access copyrighted materials, the companies will breath a collective sigh of relief and relax. We'll have burrowed tunnels through whatever protection mechanism that's in place but no one will really care.

Damn them!!! (0, Offtopic)

Mr. Disappointment (470728) | more than 13 years ago | (#2153801)

They could at least try buying us off with some beads and blankets!

Re:Damn them!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2122049)

I may be a pool man, but I am f@#*&ng Jon Bon Jovi's pool man!!!

Wow, I never realized the "Pool Man" industry was just a cover for a vast homosexual underground! So what's it like to fuck his pool man, anyway?

Nope. (5, Insightful)

Mike Schiraldi (18296) | more than 13 years ago | (#2153803)

Internet service providers can always pull the plug?treating Freenet, in essence, as an unsupported feature, in the way that many providers today do not support telnet, Usenet and other less popular services.

...at which point Freenet will start tunneling through http, pop3, ftp, ssh, and any other common protocol. If ISPs start peeking at specific packets, Freenet will start using SSL.

And like i mentioned in an earlier comment, why would ISPs do this? MP3s and porn are far and away the most popular uses for the Internet today, according to a study i just made up. It would be like making cars that don't go over 55 or "tobacco water pipes" that only work with tobacco.

That is whay we have RFC 3093 (2)

einhverfr (238914) | more than 13 years ago | (#2125372)

Firewall Enhancement Protocol. This is exacltly the sort of thing that cracking down on the internet will promote:

http://kludge.psc.edu/~ksulliva/rfc-april1/rfc3093 .txt

Hey Man, Shishah is tobacco too! (1)

skyknytnowhere (469520) | more than 13 years ago | (#2129409)

And strawberry shishah tastes oh so good.

skye

Democracy vs. Corporate control (3, Insightful)

Apotsy (84148) | more than 13 years ago | (#2156633)

I found this quote interesting:
By insisting that digital technology is ineluctably beyond the reach of authority, Falco and others like him are inadvertently making it far more likely that the rules of operation of the worldwide intellectual commons that is the Internet will be established not through the messy but open processes of democracy but by private negotiations among large corporations.
The author of this article is deluding himself if he thinks there is any chance of the "messy but open processes of democracy" getting involved in internet regulation. No matter what attitude people take, corporate control will still be the order of the day, for a number of reasons -- not the least of which is that those "processes of democracy" don't exist any more. Corporations found them to be too inconvenient, so they bought them out a long time ago.

Corporate control of the net will happen, because that's the only thing that can happen in today's world. Sure, it would be nice if netizens got some of those silly myths the author talks about out of their heads and adopted a more realistic attitude, but it's not like that would do anything to prevent corporate control from setting in any way. You can't prevent it -- that's the real truism of the net.

Re:Democracy vs. Corporate control (3, Insightful)

telbij (465356) | more than 13 years ago | (#2111930)

That's a pretty dim view of humanity. You are of course correct that corporations wield most of the political power. But that's not because they are some incredible behemoths that we have no power over. It's simply because Americans are spoiled, and they really don't give a shit about things like the environment or international justice.

The American people are as bought and paid for as the government, so to say that the government somehow doesn't represent the people is a convenient excuse to dismiss your civil responsibility. Believe me, when there's a large public outcry, the government will listen.

Corporate control of the Internet may very well happen, but don't let your experience of corporate control over your lifetime lead you into false assumptions. The greater a controlling power becomes, the more unstable it becomes until it topples. That is the really real truism of history.

Falco?!? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2156634)

As in "Rock Me Amadeus" Falco? Since when is he credentialed to judge the future of the Internet?

Re:Democracy vs. Corporate control (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2156649)

I find your defeatism self-defeating.

ironic... (1)

MavEtJu (241979) | more than 13 years ago | (#2156647)

The fact that he is able to write a document about regulating the web shows that it is not possible to regulate the web :-)

Great (3, Interesting)

CaptainSuperBoy (17170) | more than 13 years ago | (#2156682)

Against all the arguments as to why copy protection will NEVER work, we have this gem: "Because e-books can't do two things at once." This is about the best argument in the article, and it's still awful. It's true, it would be kind of hard to run a debugger on that Rocket eBook, but why not crack that eBook on a PC?

This article holds no water if any of the three myths are actually true - and surprise, there are problems with all 3 myths, particularly numbers 2 and 3.

The assumption that you need central servers, or identifiable traffic in order to run an efficient decentralized file sharing network is just plain wrong. The fact that something hasn't been done yet does not mean it can't be accomplished, you know. FreeNet itself is proof of concept that you can have a completely distributed network where no one node knows the whole story. As a programmer I see no reason why you couldn't design a system with traffic indistinguishable from SSH or a VPN, with adequate performance, that was completely decentralized.

I'm surprised at how well written this article is. There are bound to be opposing views on any subject, and I guess it's a good thing that this isn't filled with more FUD or pro-media propaganda. But as it goes, the arguments in this article just don't work. If you had a file-sharing network where you could publish anything, available to anyone at a high speed, how could you justify to the courts that you wanted it shut down? Does the availability of copyrighted material outweigh the overall benefit of the system? Of course not! As the article even says, in order to shut that kind of network down, you'd have to turn off the Internet.

Re:Great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2122051)

>As a programmer I see no reason why you >couldn't design a system with traffic >indistinguishable from SSH or a VPN Will only a savvy, elite group be able to use such systems, or will they be usable by the general public for general purposes?

More Bosstones (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2156712)

Mighty Mighty Bosstones - The Impression That I Get

Have you ever bee close to tragedy
Or been close to folks who have?
Have you ever felt a pain so powerful
So heavy you collapse?

I've never had to knock on wood
But I know someone who has
Which makes me wonder if I could
It makes me wonder if I've never had to knock on wood
And I'm glad I haven't yet
Because I'm sure it isn't good
That's the impression that I get

Have you ever had the odds stacked up so high
You need a strength most don't possess?
Or has it ever come down to do or die
You've got to rise above the rest?

I've never had to knock on wood
But I know someone who has
Which makes me wonder if I could
It makes me wonder if I've never had to knock on wood
And I'm glad I haven't yet
Because I'm sure it isn't good
That's the impression that I get

I'm not a coward, I've just never been tested
I'd like to think that if I was I would pass
Look at the tested and think there but for the grace go I
Might be a coward, I'm afraid of what I might find out

I've never had to knock on wood
But I know someone who has
Which makes me wonder if I could
It makes me wonder if I've never had to knock on wood
And I'm glad I haven't yet
Because I'm sure it isn't good
That's the impression that I get

The Internet is unstoppable? (2, Insightful)

dbolger (161340) | more than 13 years ago | (#2156843)

A quote in the article says, "The Internet is unstoppable! The flow of data can never be blocked". While I'm sure that the Internet, as it is now can be censored and thus, basically stopped (just look at the Great Firewall of China), the second sentence is the greatest truth - the flow of data can never be blocked. This is as true now as it was when the Nazi's publically burned books in 1933. The model of the internet routing around censorship is taken from real life - if you stop the net, we'll just find another way of spreading our information and letting the data flow. Information is ammunition, and the people will /never/ let that be taken away from them.

news? (1)

jinx_ (88343) | more than 13 years ago | (#2156902)

anyone who's been following the news for longer than a day or two realizes that the internet is moving towards regulation (whether we like it or not). i just hope it won't become so regulated that it's unusable. a lot of this article is just review, pointing out conclusions that most of us have already come to.

Re:news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2125537)

The Lone Ranger and Tonto were riding on the range one day. The two came to a stop, where Tonto jumped off his horse and put his head on the ground to listen to see if anyone was coming. After a few seconds he rose and said, "Buffalo come."
The Lone Ranger was amazed and proclaimed "Damn you Indians are smart, how the hell did you know there were buffaloes coming?"
Tonto replied, "Face sticky."

Not only the net. THe article mentions CPRM also. (5, Insightful)

einhverfr (238914) | more than 13 years ago | (#2145807)

I recently came across a short story and commentary on intellectual property by RMS called "The Right to Read" (available at http://www.fsf.org/philosophy/right-to-read.html). Interesting and chilling look at current trends in intellectual property.

Articles like this help to emphisize the points made in the story/article. Interestingly, the slashdot article meantions hardware changes as a way to protect copyrighted materials without the possibility of copying. I should mention that this overlooks a major point-- hardware has to give the majority of choice up to the software, and anything that completely prevents digital copying of works must by necessity interfere with many innocuous activities without offering complete security (suppose I rip music from an encripted CD, decrypt it, pass it to another process through a named pipe, encode it in another format, and write it to disk. Is the hardware going to measure everything that the kernel does?)

THe only way around this is, IMO, to outlaw open source kernels (a possibility mentioned in The Right to Read). I don't think that this is a current possibility. The other possibility is to prevent CDROM drives from reading audio CDs. That is not going to happen soon either.

The slashdotted article states:"I can write a program that lets you break the copy protection on a music file," says Dan Farmer, an independent computer security consultant in San Francisco. "But I can't write a program that solders new connections onto a chip for you."

This statement is somewhat naive... One can always write a program to emulate any piece of hardware, and there will always be ways of breaking them.

Stallman seems to indicate that the DMCA poses a significant threat to free debuggers (which could be used to circumvent copy protections) and free kernels, which could also be used to circumvent protections.

We need to stand together supporting the right to read.

Rights language less useful than legal constructs (3, Informative)

hillct (230132) | more than 13 years ago | (#2156638)

While we've been focusing on rights language, and discussions of what should be, WIPO, with the support of many old-economy publishers have begun to implement the legal constructs which will allow prosecution for net based offenses, related to intellectual property. The first evidence of this in the US was the DMCA, but for the rest of the story, read the WIPO whitepaper "Technical Protection Measures: The Intersection of Technology, Law, and Commercial Licenses [wipo.org] " (available in M$ word format and PDF format). It's a vary interesting read.

--CTH

[OT, but phunny] (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2156912)

Superman, Natalie Portman and Quasimodo went to see the forrest sage to ask for jugdement.

Superman went in first, wanting to know if he was the strongest of all. A minute later he emerged from the sage's hut, shouting "Yes! I am the strongest!"

Natalie Portman then entered the place of wisdom, with the intention of asking whether she was the hottest chick of all. Less than a minute later, she came back, declaring "Yes! It's true, I am the hottest!"

Finally, Quasimodo went in to ask the sage if he was indeed the ugliest person on the planet. A minute went by. Then another. Superman and Natalie were getting worried. Almost an hour later, Quasimodo exited the hut, scratching his head, and asked "Who the fuck is Jon Katz?"

Re:[OT, but phunny] (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2129033)

phunny?
that is different from funny, right?

El Posto (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2157039)

El Posto Firsto.

Re:El Posto (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2129759)

Go back to Canada where you came from, you dirty fuck.

Re:El Posto (-1)

Ralph JewHater Nader (450769) | more than 13 years ago | (#2114858)

No no no, he's a Jew. Get that fucker into the ovens.

Re:El Posto (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2153775)

No no no, he's a Jew. Get that fucker into the ovens.
Now yer talkin' !

moron (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2156714)

moron. everybody knows the correct spelling of 'first' in spanish is 'cuatro'

Re:moron (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2136436)

or 'cuarto'
whatever.
damn spics and thier crazy language...

Re:moron (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2156809)

It's primero you stupid fuck. Cuatro is the number of times your dog fucks you up the ass every day.

Re:moron (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2145934)

It's primero you stupid fuck

sorry, you lose

Re:moron (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#2134907)

Not again?!
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