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Sklyarov Indicted

timothy posted about 13 years ago | from the welcome-to-the-states dept.

News 810

Nutcase was the first to write with news from the AP that "Dmitry Sklyarov, 27 and ElComSoft Co. Ltd. of Moscow were charged with five counts of copyright violations for writing a program that lets users of Adobe Systems' eBook Reader get around copyright protections imposed by electronic-book publishers." Here's a link to the AP story at the Washington Post. Here is the story at Salon as well. Update: 08/29 01:57 AM GMT by T : Here's the EFF's release on the indictment, too -- including information about where to go if you'd like to demonstrate your reaction publicly.

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the elusive fp? (-1, Offtopic)

At000miC (261392) | about 13 years ago | (#2228080)

ahh the holy grail of /.

Too bad... (3, Insightful)

Tin Weasil (246885) | about 13 years ago | (#2228081)

Wouldn't it have been nice if ebook technology had been around when Ben Franklin instituted the first Libraries in the U.S.? Franklin could have been indited too!

Re:Too bad... (1)

kilgore_47 (262118) | about 13 years ago | (#2228089)

Wouldn't it have been nice if ebook technology had been around when Ben Franklin instituted the first Libraries in the U.S.? Franklin could have been indited too!

Though your heart is in the right place, your analogy sucks. Sorry.

Re:Too bad... (1)

Tin Weasil (246885) | about 13 years ago | (#2228092)

Umm. Indicted. Not indited.

Re:Too bad... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228118)

shut the fuck up you karma whore

FP... hehe (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228082)

Firzt P0st


Lameness filter blow goats....


f1rzt (-1, Offtopic)

PhurstP0aszt (515790) | about 13 years ago | (#2228088)

Lameness filter failz again


You Bastards! (1)

S. Allen (5756) | about 13 years ago | (#2228090)

You indicted Sklyarov!

Elcomsoft!? (2, Interesting)

Linux Freak (18608) | about 13 years ago | (#2228093)

How the hell can Elcomsoft be indicted for breaking a U.S. copyright law when that firm is in RUSSIA!?

Re:Elcomsoft!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228099)

Because it did business (i.e. sold products in) the United States, asshole.

Re:Elcomsoft!? (2, Insightful)

chrisvdp74656 (448900) | about 13 years ago | (#2228130)

Easily. Everybody knows that the US Laws are applicable all over the world!


Sorry, I needed to get that off my chest. IANAL, but I dont think they can, legally. They can only nab everybody involved eith Elcomsoft as they pass through the US (and that includes international flights). Skylarov had the misfortune to be the first.

Re:Elcomsoft!? (1)

Ridge2001 (306010) | about 13 years ago | (#2228161)

The first? The first international DMCA violator, yes, but not the first foreigner "nabbed" by the US. Was Manuel Noriega in the US when they "nabbed" him? (No, unless you consider Panama part of the US.)

The US government does whatever it wants, international law notwithstanding. Has done so for a long time.

Re:Elcomsoft!? (1)

mimbleton (467957) | about 13 years ago | (#2228177)

Well, that is a perk of being the biggest kid on the block.

Re:Elcomsoft!? (1)

chrisvdp74656 (448900) | about 13 years ago | (#2228182)

I menat the first employee of Elcomsoft. Sorry about that.

Re:Elcomsoft!? (1)

maetenloch (181291) | about 13 years ago | (#2228197)

How the hell can Elcomsoft be indicted for breaking a U.S. copyright law when that firm is in RUSSIA!?

Ahh, but if they accept payments from and ship products directly to customers in the U.S., they're doing business in the U.S. and that puts them under the jurisdiction of U.S. copyright laws. Even if they're found guilty, as long as they have no assets here and no employees ever enter the country, it's not clear what the DOJ could ever do about it.

Re:Elcomsoft!? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228237)

it's not clear what the DOJ could ever do about it.

How about asking the airforce to nuke moscow? seems to be american style...

Re:Elcomsoft!? (2)

bugg (65930) | about 13 years ago | (#2228202)

The same way they've done it in the past, with companies like DeBeers (the diamond people). They can't go over there and do anything, but if any representative of Elcomsoft (or DeBeers, for that matter) steps foot in America, they can be arrested and charged on behalf of their company.

hey! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228095)























doh (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228104)

|.----- ----- -.|
|| ||
||welcometo slashdot!||
|| ||
||___ _____ ___||
'---. .---- ---'
|| _|/
||." ".
/_)||/ |
|_)||'- |
\_)|\'.___.'/ |\/|_
||\ \_// _|'/
|_|\'.___.' \)/
\ \_/\__/\__|==|
\ \/\/\`\ ||
\ \\// \||
`\ /\| /|
;|| |\____/
||| |

In other news (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228097)

I was indited on six counts of first degree felony aggrevated sex abuse of a child. Why don't I get my own slashdot story??

Re:In other news (1)

icebeing (458161) | about 13 years ago | (#2228117)

Because you're an anonymous coward, maybe?
God help you if you did.


Re:In other news (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228193)

JonKatz, you already have editor privs. Why not write a 7 part megastory about it.

these are felonies in usa (2, Insightful)

perlfish (305161) | about 13 years ago | (#2228098)

The indictment alleges that the programmer and the company conspired for "commercial advantage and private financial gain."

We should be hanging everyone who is guilty of these things.

Not as bad as it sounds... (1)

number one duck (319827) | about 13 years ago | (#2228101)

This guarantees it will go to court proper... if he is convicted, that will be trouble... but if he isn't, its a bigger victory.

An innocent verdict is a stronger precident than a guilty one, even if we have to trade one-for-one...

Re:Not as bad as it sounds... (1)

lawyamike (199551) | about 13 years ago | (#2228191)

Not necessarily.

There are several ways that the court could resolve this in Skylarov's favor, but still retain the possibility of future prosecutions.

Nothing ever really goes to court proper. Most courts will attempt to bounce cases like this on grounds with the least precedential value if at all possible. It decreases the chances of a dramatic reversal.

Re:Not as bad as it sounds... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228255)

This guarantees it will go to court proper

No, it doesn't. It can still be plea-bargained or dropped at any point. This just means that the grand jury has found that enough evidence exists for him to be charged with a crime.

Moral of the story is... (2)

WasterDave (20047) | about 13 years ago | (#2228108)

"ElcomSoft was culpable because it sold the program for $99 in the United States through an online payment service based in Issaquah, Wash., and with a Web site hosted in Chicago."

...Don't host in the states. Rackspace Europe? Verio AsiaPacific?


Not exactly (2)

JohnG (93975) | about 13 years ago | (#2228146)

I hate to play devils advocate, but the moral of the story isn't "Don't host in the US." it's "Don't host in the US if you plan on breaking US law."
Whether or not we agree with the laws, there is a big difference between the two morals.

slashdot should be indicted (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228113)

feces, for crimes against humanity

5 counts? (2)

jeffy124 (453342) | about 13 years ago | (#2228116)

5 criminal charges against him!? I see about 3: trafficing software that violates DMCA, selling software that violates DMCA (which is his company, not him). Ok, so it's two. Little help please?

Has the court posted the pdfs of today's proceedings anywhere?

Re:5 counts? (1)

FredGray (305594) | about 13 years ago | (#2228241)

Has the court posted the pdfs of today's proceedings anywhere?

Yes, here's the indictment. []

where's my checkbook? (2)

klund (53347) | about 13 years ago | (#2228119)

Where's my checkbook?

It's time to make anothe donation to the EFF [] .

Seriously, each and every one of us should make a small donation to the EFF so we can fight this miscarriage of justice. We don't have to put up with bad laws! Just because Congress has been bought and paid for by the members of the MPAA, the RIAA, and the BSA doesn't mean we have to bend over and take it.

This DMCA crap has got to be stopped.

Besides, the EFF raid hats are really cool.

Re:where's my checkbook? (1)

icebeing (458161) | about 13 years ago | (#2228175)

This DMCA crap has got to be stopped.

Stopped?? NOW the general populace of the US of A is starting to see the DMCA for what it really is, that is has the power to CIRCUMVENT your constitutional rights...too bad not enough voters gave a damn to find out in '98

Yes, it should have been stopped THEN, in the legislative womb of Congress. Bit too late now, I 'd say. I just hope other countries don't follow, Canada?

Re:where's my checkbook? (1)

EvlPenguin (168738) | about 13 years ago | (#2228223)

Oh please. The "general public" isn't seeing shit. I've yet to see one news story cover this case that even goes so far as to mention the said act. And guess what? We never will.

Most people still have the "well he shouldn't have been doing it in the first place" attitude. And I do not see that changing for atleast a few more years. You have to remember, that most people see ROT-13 as a legitimite way of protecting data, just because it's something that their little heads can't understand anyway. I, for one, don't think the DMCA will be repealed for a lonnggg time.

Re:where's my checkbook? (2)

tshak (173364) | about 13 years ago | (#2228247)

I know it's not much, but my $300 just got sent to the EFF. What a small sacrifice in light of what's at stake for Dmitry, and our freedom.

Boycott Adobe Now! (1)

Louis Savain (65843) | about 13 years ago | (#2228123)

We must send a strong signal that we are not going to let our freedoms trampled on. Adobe started this as a test of the vialibility of the DMCA. Then, to get on the public's good side, they backed out. Too late! It's the thought that counts. They must pay the consequences. If we do nothing, the DMCA will stay on the books.

Re:Boycott Adobe Now! (1)

ThymePuns (222253) | about 13 years ago | (#2228160)

It's difficult to say if Adobe proper actually started it. Often these things are done with a third party company that looks for the things and incites. However, I don't preach that Adobe is any more innocent than Dimitri is.

Re:Boycott Adobe Now! (2, Interesting)

mackman (19286) | about 13 years ago | (#2228185)

RTFA, "Adobe dropped its support of the case on July 23." IOW, it's now the US government that's persuing the case. Adobe's realized that the US is over-eager to apply the DCMA, and has backed off. Perhaps we should boycott the US instead?

Re:Boycott Adobe Now! (1)

eXtro (258933) | about 13 years ago | (#2228238)

No, Adobe should still be penalized. They've done the equivalent of washing their hands of the mess they started, just like a certain quasi-historical figure by the name of Pontious Pilate. A boycott really won't effect them though, the number of people who a) care and b) use Adobe software but have other vialble options is a pretty small group (and don't even mention GIMP).

If people really want to make an impact decrypt and flood gnutella (or whatever passes as peer-to-peer file sharing now) with formerly encrypted documents. Spend a few bucks and pack CD's full of decrypted ebooks, accidently leave them in a mall, or in a library etc.

Better yet, set yourself up as an example of how wrong the law is. Write the software, release it under the GPL and get your ass thrown in jail, bonus points if you're an American citizens with one wife and multiple kids, a good job and no arrest record.

Re:Boycott Adobe Now! (1)

EvlPenguin (168738) | about 13 years ago | (#2228243)

See, this is why I'm in favour of shooting lawyers.

[/me puts a gun in the laywer's mouth]

"Give me one reason not to kill you"

[muffled pleas]

"Exactly; I couldn't think of a reason either!"


kiss several hundred thousand goodbye adobe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228125)

While I support the protection of copyrights, the way you handled this Adobe was unforgiveable. Well it just so happens I work for 2 colleges as a IT technician and several hundred people ask me advice on hardware and software, including teachers. I regret to inform you Adobe, I will be turning away as many people from buying your products and giving you revenue as I possibly can. Oh this does not including the several thousand every year I help on irc resolve hardware and software issues and many times these people also ask me for hardware and software advice.

Can you see a pattern here Adobe?

It's called use every legal means possible to deny you revenue.

I suggest other IT techs do the same.

Perhaps Slashdot should provide a link listing many non-Adobe replacments for Adobe products.

Be skeptical of advice from Jason Salopek (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228141)

He will put his political agenda ahead of your best interests.

Re:kiss several hundred thousand goodbye adobe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228150)

I'm sure they'll miss the sales from the maybe 2 people that might ask you for advice concerning an impending purchase of Adobe products. Since you indicate you don't make actual purchase decisions for the unis, I will assume you don't. I think you overestimate your position in this universe, one of the most embarrassing errors IMO.

Re:kiss several hundred thousand goodbye adobe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228186)

You help several thousand people a year on IRC? Dude, shut the fuck up. After that bullshit claim, tell us why Adobe should give a shit about what Jason Salopek thinks again?

Re:kiss several hundred thousand goodbye adobe (1)

praedor (218403) | about 13 years ago | (#2228236)

Pardon me but the entire law is UNCONSTITUTIONAL! It is a crap law. If you buy a book, it is YOURS to do with what you want. You can read it, pass it on to a friend or MANY friends and they can read it. You can burn the book, xerox pages, remove pages, write on it, whatever.

Fair use essentially means that the publisher CANNOT prevent you from making an archive copy/backup copy(or copies). That is your solid right. They are full of shit because they will talk out one side of their mouth saying "sure, we support this as your fair use rights" while out the other side they call for the banning of the MEANS TO PRACTICE YOUR FAIR USE RIGHTS. You cannot be for archiving/backup copying, which REQUIRES the tool that Sklyarov and Co produced since those shitty e-books don't have the capability built into their software and at the same time supporting the unConstitutional ban on the coders.

You buy the e-book or paperback or hardcover book and you OWN it lock, stock, and barrel. Period.

Re:kiss several hundred thousand goodbye adobe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228248)

Jason Salopek? Aren't you that guy that got flamed on the linux-kernel mailing list for constantly posting in all caps [] ? Yep, looks like you are. Gee, I bet everyone's just hanging on the edges of their seats waiting for your advice. What a fucking tool.

well (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228129)

How many of us would, say, create a company whose purpose it was to distribute Free Tibet materials, travel to China, give a speech on freeing Tibet, and then be surprised when we got arrested?
This is probably a bad analogy to be using when I'm taking the side of the US in this, but each country has a right to autonomy. Unless you're given diplomatic immunity, you abide by the laws of the country you're currently in. If doing something in one country is illegal in another country, you may be tried & prosecuted when you try to enter said country (drug & crime lords or terrorists who enter the US but don't engage in criminal activities while here)
Just because you think its a bad law doesn't give you the right to ignore it. I acknowledge civil diobedience as a form of protest, and part of that is paying the penalty, which Sklyarov is currently doing.

Re:well (2, Insightful)

lawyamike (199551) | about 13 years ago | (#2228215)

I do not buy it.

Nearly all legal systems dating back to the Code of Justinian recognize the difference between malum prohibitum and malum in se. The former refers to conduct that is criminal by diktat; the latter refers to to conduct that is criminal by its very nature.

In other words, were Sklyarov murdering people or depriving people of property, there might be a better case for not treating him with any leniency, particularly where his case has significant constitutional implications.


Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228131)

Wow, Sklyrov's ass will soon look like the guy!!!
\__/ \__/
(oo) (oo)
(\//~~\\ //~~\\
\/\__// \\__// \
|||| ||\\ Gimme some!!!
__ |||| __ |||| ___
(_)(_) (_)(_)

Guess we're in for the long haul (1)

CptnKirk (109622) | about 13 years ago | (#2228133)

Looks like despite everyone's hopes, this case won't go away. It's too bad. Everyone thought the DMCA would be challenged one day, but nobody wanted it to come at Dimitry's expense.

But shoulda, woulda, coulda, the fact is he was indicted and could spend 5 years in jail if convicted. What does this say for the future? If Dimitry is convicted I don't think we realize the amount of trouble a wide range of people could be in. This case has far reaching implications in many areas including cryptography, DVD, music (digital and CD), who knows even Samba and Wine could be effected depending on what some people consider to be a proprietary protection system.

Be afraid, and be sure not to lose this one.

Re:Guess we're in for the long haul (2, Informative)

Ridge2001 (306010) | about 13 years ago | (#2228205)

could spend 5 years in jail if convicted

They added a few conspiracy charges against him. It's up to 25 years now. []

looking forward to the russian response... (1)

Emil Muzz (211998) | about 13 years ago | (#2228134)

I can only imagine the US would be screaming bloody murder about this happening to one of its citizens: anyone recall the fracas that ensued when russian officials imprisoned a US-citizen student on bogus drug charges? Not that it would really get anything done (what with Dubya in office with his lovely fsck-all attitude towards other nations) but I would love to see Russia give us a little diplomatic hell for screwing with one of their own.

Re:looking forward to the russian response... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228163)

Yeah, 'cause we all know that the Russians care a lot more some spamming warez d00d than they do about losing a few hundred million dollars in IMF aid. Sure thing, buddy.

Re:looking forward to the russian response... (2)

jeffy124 (453342) | about 13 years ago | (#2228188)

you raise a good point - anyone of our russian slashdotters care to comment on how your government is reacting to the whole Dimitry thing? Or how ElComSoft has reacted?

Re:looking forward to the russian response... (1)

mimbleton (467957) | about 13 years ago | (#2228217)

"little diplomatic hell for screwing with one of their own. "

Not Russians.
They have history of wasting millions of their own for no reason whatsoever so I highly doubt they will make much out of it.

This is a damn shame. (5, Insightful)

jjn1056 (85209) | about 13 years ago | (#2228135)

Now let's all concentrate on getting the guy home to his wife and kids, and not use him to further our political ends. If someone volunteers to be a test case for the FSF or others, that's fine; he did not, and is a unwitting victim of our police state.

er.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228140)

company conspired for "commercial advantage and private financial gain."

Isn't this the whole point of running a company? God forbid if it becomes illegal to seek commercial advantage or private financial gain...

Then again, the article might have meant to say "illegally conspired..."

not first post, but close. (-1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228142)

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where do i go? (0)

kingtroll (213000) | about 13 years ago | (#2228144)

if i want to support my reaction publically.

this story is really alot more complicated and shady than it appears (i think msnbc has the scoop).

is there no room for differing opinions on slashdot?

One word: (1)

Rimbo (139781) | about 13 years ago | (#2228145)


Re:One word: (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228156)

Here's my one word:

Karma whore.

Okay, it's two. But I can't believe you used your +1 posting bonus to post something that redundant, off-topic, trollish, and stupid. I hope the moderators exact their vengeance against you and moderate your post down into the fiery depths of hell where it -- and you -- belong for all eternity.

Die, scum!

Re:One word: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228212)

Ah, the karma whore mods down MY criticque of his post with his second account. (Either that, or some other moderator is on crack). This travesty will be adjusted in meta-moderation, believe you me. (Or you can use your extra mod point and mod DOWN the parent post where it belongs...I shall then be satisfied and not take further action.)

Re:One word: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228228)

"Shit"? That's quite the insightful comment, buddy. How exactly did you get your +2 posting bonus, anyway? Judicious use of 2nd accounts with mod privileges? Nice social engineering skills on yah, I'll give you that.

Re:One word: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228244)

Dude, one only needs to look at his posting history, which reveals quite a karma whoring past, to know what this guy's MO is. But he'll get away with it, because a) moderators are too fucking stupid to catch on, and b) moderators don't have the balls to do anything about it.

Damn... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228148)

This is truly a dark day for criminals everywhere. I hope those jerks that actually obey laws are feeling proud of themselves today. :(

who cares (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228157)

No one cares any more.

American world awareness: (1)

MrEd (60684) | about 13 years ago | (#2228159)

Well-dressed observers plan to attend the arraignment
and nonviolent protests are scheduled in Moscow (Russia),
London (England), Boston, San Francisco, Los Angeles,
and Black Rock City, Nevada.

Gee whiz, they don't mean that *other* Moscow or London, Ontario? Whew, I'm glad for that clarification.

I feel a bit dirty bashing the EFF... I love those boys. Just happens to be one of those pet peeves of mine.

No surprise here... (2, Interesting)

kcbrown (7426) | about 13 years ago | (#2228162)

But to see why, you have to first know the reason the DMCA exists to begin with. I talk about that here [] .

Now, it's important to realize that the corporations behind the DMCA want to use it as a terror weapon. How else can you prevent people from creating and trafficking in copyright circumvention devices (software or otherwise)? A law which nobody behaves is a useless law. But a terror weapon isn't effective if people don't believe you'll use it.

If the prosecution were to drop this case, it would make it clear that the DMCA is a law that the government isn't willing to enforce (after all, if they're not going to enforce it against a foreign national, what chance is there that they'll enforce it against a U.S. citizen?).

So they'll take this case as far as the defense is willing to go, hoping that the defense runs out of resources or time before this gets to the Supreme Court.

And trust me, the government will put a lot of money and resources into this case. They want to get and keep a conviction as long as possible, because that's what the government's masters (the corporations) want. so expect to see this case drag on for years, if not decades.

indicted? big deal... (2)

Wakko Warner (324) | about 13 years ago | (#2228165)

we all figured on this happening, right? now, if he's *convicted*, that'll suck.

- A.P.

Freedom for Dmitry! (2)

wfrp01 (82831) | about 13 years ago | (#2228166)

This make my blood curdle. This man has a wife and two children. He is a guest of the United States of America. And he has been put in jail to await prosecutions for what?! - talking to a group of computer professionals about the weaknesses inherent to particular encryption technologies!

The "freedom" we love to chatter about is not merely an abstraction, an interesting conversation at a summer BBQ, a fly in the ointment of our libertarian campaigns. Freedom is real. Dmitry's children can't see their father. He's been branded a criminal. This is wrong, wrong, wrong.

Give Dmitry freedom! Give him freedom in a country founded on the principle of freedom!

If Dmitry is not freed, I propose that everyone with the capability of shutting down an email server do so upon his conviction.

Re:Freedom for Dmitry! (1)

theaem (397751) | about 13 years ago | (#2228203)

Sorry to wake you up, but this country is based on freedom for americans, not for everyone. There is a double standard on freedom for americans and freedom for the rest of the world.

Re:Freedom for Dmitry! (2)

wfrp01 (82831) | about 13 years ago | (#2228254)

I'm awake. ;)

But even in the USofA, we must suffer diatribes about the merits of 'abstract, difficult to understand, unfriendly to business' concepts like 'freedom'. Bah. Freedom is Freedom. Damn to hell anyone who wants to take mine away.

Re:Freedom for Dmitry! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228226)

Why do you think people with children are more deserving of freedom than anybody else? Ass.

Re:Freedom for Dmitry! (1)

mimbleton (467957) | about 13 years ago | (#2228234)

He is not being charged for TALKING but for trying to sell his program in US.

Please, at least get that streight.

MEEPT!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228170)

Ho! Ho! Looks like Corel are celebrating GNU/Linux's 10th birthday in their own "style"


Hackers of the World ....UNITE !!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228172)

Let's burn Adobe till the roots.... piss on the American Flag, nuke Microsoft !!!

Who gives two shits. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228174)

So some damn Russkie gets nabbed. BFD.

Brian Moyles is a tard.

Isn't this such a sad sight? (5, Insightful)

phoenix_orb (469019) | about 13 years ago | (#2228178)

Why, in this country of supposed freedom, do we allow companies to control not only specific markets, (in the case of Micro$oft monopoly) but also allow them to lobby towards laws that take away freedoms, such as freedom of speech.

I know that ElComSoft Co. Ltd made mistakes when they started selling a program designed to defeat a specific type of encryption. I feel that this is wrong. Unfortunately, arresting a programer for giving a speech about how he broke the encryption is hogwash as well. (did I really say hogwash...)

This country (the USA) was founded upon ideals that one man can speak his mind, and express himself in whatever way that he chooses, as so long as it doesn't detriment others. (thus, yelling "fire" in a theater is wrong) I see no reason why showing an encryption to be faulty and how to circumvent it AS A ACADEMIC STUDY wrong. As I said before, I think that the company was at fault, but can the "oh so mighty" hand of the US touch a company in Russia? Nope, we can't, at least legally anyway. So the goverment uses a poorly worded law to push the corporate views on American people. What will be next? Will I be arrested because I point out a security hole in Microsoft's hotmail site? No, but if I start selling a product that will allow it's user's to read other's email, I can and I should be arrested. I don't believe that Sklyarov ownes this company, he is just a programmer.

This person has been arrested for violation of the DMCA. I don't believe in the DMCA, and unfortunately, I cannot make my congressman or senator understand why. (The breaking of encryption is over their heads, and copyrights and patents lasting forever is very vague to them as well.) They are too pressured my lobbyists throwing bags of money at them to listen to something that would blackball them in the lobbyists eyes. So what happens? More rights are taken away from all Americans, and 85% or more of Americans don't know of don't care.

It is a sad state.

Ben Franklin ( I think ) said that "the price of freedom is eternal vigilance." But Americans have become to apathetic to even care about there government, much less the actions that the government has been taking. And because of this more and more skewed laws have worked there way in the the US Code. Sadly, today, they could arrest almost anyone with the inordinate amount of laws on the books. They chose here and now to arrest Mr. Sklyarov. I hope that he wins, and I hope that the court system invalidates this very askew law. It would help put more freedom back into the individuals hand, and away from the greedy corporate entity.

I say let it play out in court (1)

notext (461158) | about 13 years ago | (#2228180)

The indictment said ElcomSoft was culpable because it sold the program for $99 in the United States through an online payment service based in Issaquah, Wash., and with a Web site hosted in Chicago.

What his company did was against the law. He was part of it. If you plan on doing commerce in a country you should know their laws and abide by them or prepare to pay the consequences.

I am not saying by any means that this is a fair and just law, but it is law. Do I hope he goes to jail? No. I hope he wins and the DMCA is thrown away like the garbage it is. Just don't think because you don't think a law is right or just means you can go around breaking it as long as you please. This is the way the justice system is designed.

not to "get around copyright protections" (5, Insightful)

bigpat (158134) | about 13 years ago | (#2228190)

The software doesn't "get around copyright protections." Copyright is a legal protection, the software merely allows you to get around copy protections. Does anyone else think the difference is important?

What a sick F*cking World in which we live. (1)

allknowing (304084) | about 13 years ago | (#2228198)

Sometimes I feel like I'm living in a world that doesn't want to get smarter, doesn't want to press harder for knowledge, and doesn't want to know the truth about itself.

I feel like I'm in a different era of living where government, the leaders and etc are suppressing our own cravings to know more and defy what 'the law' tells us is "correct".

Oh well, it's nothink an AK47 and a Rooftop can't fix--right?

What can I do? (1)

SirAnodos (463311) | about 13 years ago | (#2228200)

This is sad, real sad. As an American, this is embarassing. I can't make it to any the protests/demonstrations. Is there anything a single person can do to make a difference in this area?

e-books don't sell (1)

fishbonez (177041) | about 13 years ago | (#2228206)

According to this article [] from the NY Times, the great e-book revolution has failed to materialize. Based upon the fact that very few people actually use e-books, the real damages in the Sklykarov case are minimal.

Re:e-books don't sell (1)

notext (461158) | about 13 years ago | (#2228252)

Of course they don't sell. All the people have bootleg ebooks they got with elcomsoft's product.

Electronic Freedom Foundation (1)

4024490502 (458629) | about 13 years ago | (#2228209)

This may be a bit picky and offtopic, but it irked me somewhat to see the Electronic Frontier Foundation called teh Electronic Freedom Foundation.

Editoralizing by AP? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228210)

Why does the official EFF press release read:

Even if one were to ignore the serious legal questions involving the DMCA, this case hardly cries out for criminal prosecution.

while the AP release reads:

Even if one were to ignore the serious legal questions involving the (copyright protections), this case hardly cries out for criminal prosecution.

Reader Joe Six-Pack may be curious enough to poke around for information regarding DMCA, but probably gets a glazed expression when presented with the phrase "copyright protection". What the hell kind of biased media coverage is this?


NiGGeRZ_R_SMeLLy (456917) | about 13 years ago | (#2228214)

this guy is a fucking criminal, he violated a federal law. why should he walk?! all these arguments on /. make no fucking sense. he did the crime, now he's going to do the time. shut the fuck up already. why are you americans standing up for a filthy vodka drinking russian? those guys are fucking theives, criminals, *AND* take jobs away from american programmers. i hope this guy is locked away for *YEARS*, that would make me happy!

Time to dump your Microsoft software...... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228216)

'Cause anyone using it is going to be the target of Russian and other European virus authors from now 'till doomsday. And these babies are going to be some of the nastiest ever seen. Needless to say XP along with .nyet is a sitting duck.

From the EFF release ... (1)

BigAl_nz (39616) | about 13 years ago | (#2228218)

"A United States grand jury this afternoon indicted Russian company Elcomsoft along with previously jailed programmer Dmitry Sklyarov on charges of trafficking and conspiracy to traffic in a copyright circumvention device."
So ...
VCR's, Cameras, pens, paper, CR-R's, ...
Hell, what if you hear someone read out of a book, and remember it ?
And what about the people that just move these things around ..., that's trafficking.
Better lock us all away huh ?

Have you ever been to these protests? They're sad (2)

bugg (65930) | about 13 years ago | (#2228224)

Here's the EFF's release on the indictment, too -- including information about where to go if you'd like to demonstrate your reaction publicly.

Has anyone here ever been to one of these protests? I attended an EFF protest of the DMCA in Pittsburgh a few weeks ago. It was scheduled for noon, but I was busy then, so I showed up around 2:30 pm. Nobody was there. No sign of a protest, no signs, nada. Later a friend of mine who was there said they left around 2, because they were tired. That's perhaps the sorriest excuse for a protest I've ever heard. I'm sure they left a lasting impression on society.

Brian Moyles. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228225)

Why not arrest him. He touches his dick too much.

5 counts... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228229)

5 years for the first and 10 years after. So that's 5+4(10) = 45 years. 45 + 27 = 72. Dmitry will be 72 by the time he gets out of prison. That it *IF* he gets out at all. By that time his ass will make the guy's stretched ass look like a pinhole.

Too bad they couldn't indict him for his spamware (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228230)

At least get him for something that has no socially redeemable qualities. Tools for stealing eBooks can kind of be justified (my tottering, old, blind grandmother who runs QDOS on an Abacus IIe needs to print the latest drivel from Stephen King onto braile tapes), but their spamware (just take a look at elcomsoft's site) is beneath contempt.

My song for dmitry (3, Funny)

wrinkledshirt (228541) | about 13 years ago | (#2228233)

Young man,
there's no need to feel down
Because your plane
back home can't get off the ground
I said young man,
Get comfy in your new town
There's no need to be unhappy.

Young man,
There's no place you can go
I said young man,
Until you cough up some dough
You will stay here
until you've served all your time
For your insignificant crime.

It's fun to stay in the U S of A,
Because of that old grand D M C A
For cracking DVD's,
Or an e-book or three,
You'll get jailed for eterniteeeee...

It's fun to stay in the U S of A
Because of that old grand D M C A
For proving to the world
That our encryption's a toy
You'll get jailed with all the boyyyyyyys...

Elcomsoft should be paying for his legal fees (2)

Telek (410366) | about 13 years ago | (#2228235)

If they aren't, why the hell aren't they?!!? It was Skylarov under their employ writing the program. So you're telling me that if I write a program for my company that violates some stupid law in some other country, I cannot ever hope to go to that country under fear of prosecution?

If he did it solely and entirely to make a financial gain, then sure I can see this case having a point. But without that, it's entirely pointless.

But luckily, if this case goes to a jury (which I believe that with penalties like that it must go to a jury) they will never convict. There is no way that any group of 12 people could unanimously send a father to prison for 5 years because he wrote a program for his employer that, really, does jack all. How many e-books are there? What does this program really affect ??? This guy has done practically nothing. It's like arresting me for dropping a piece of paper out of my pocket and sticking me in prison for 5 years for "defacing public property" or something stupid like that. This is overkill to the nth degree.

Sorry, but this just gets me all wound up again.

Mind you, it was no surprise that they indicted. There was no way that they were not going to indict, but lets hope to God that this insanity stops before it gets to court, and that if it does get that far that they won't convict. Maybe then I'll still believe that the USA has at least a shred of hope...

ElComSoft yes, but Skylov? (3, Insightful)

Cerlyn (202990) | about 13 years ago | (#2228240)

I have never seen anything to date that said Sklyarov himself was involved with the Ebook decoder project. Just being with a company that did illegal things is not illegal in itself; otherwise we would arrest all their janitors and secretaries.

Even if he did work on the Ebook project, he could claim that he did not knowingly do anything wrong since (1) it was not illegal work in Russia and (2) it work done solely for a Russian company. While claiming ignorance of the law is no excuse, I don't see how a jury could convict him directly given these facts.

That being said, shouldn't the United States be going after the company's officers (CEO, etc.), and not Sklyarov?

Support (1)

harpotheclown (516182) | about 13 years ago | (#2228245)

Sklyarov, you've got my support. RATM.

Prison Circumvention Device (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228246)

I'll start baking the cakes with the steel files in the center, you start manufacturing the government-friendly wake up plan (read: b*mb).

If the government is to be an example, we ought to detonate some US dignitaries (read: politicians), or at least torture their families.

Stop and tell me you don't understand before you go and mod this as troll.

A possibility (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2228250)

Fighting in the courts and the streets just isn't good enough. We need some power at the legislative level. If a significant percentage of U.S. I.T. workers struck, that could be a devastating blow to the economy. We need to plan and organize such a strike, and then give the EFF the power to call it. See if they can get somewhere in congress with a real threat behind them.

WTF??? (1)

binner1 (516856) | about 13 years ago | (#2228251)

"Hey hon, they just indicted Skylarov..." (stroking USA off of vacation list).

WTF? He's Russian, the company is Russian, the software is legal in Russia (and should be everywhere).

I'm completely baffled as to how things like happen. You Americans need a serious sit-down with your so-called lawmakers and congressman. Or even better, have another freakin' tea party.

-Ben (wandering to bed with thoughts of 'Though Police' and 'Big Brother')
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