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3. Re: Morning Legal Briefs Jan 14, 2013, 15:36 Beamer
 
jdreyer wrote on Jan 14, 2013, 15:33:
This is exactly what I was talking about the other day with Anon petitioning the WH for use of DDoS as a protest tool:
- Chain yourself to the door of Walmart and block people from shopping for a few hours = arrest and a day or so in jail.
- DDOS a site and block people from shopping for a few hours = arrest and FIVE YEARS in jail.

My general feeling is that we've become too much of a prison-oriented society in the US. When the laws for classic crimes (burglary, theft, etc.) were revised 50-100 years ago, they were harsh but reasonable: you can get 10 years for manslaughter or 5 years for assault, etc. But when cyber crime laws were written 10-15 years ago, we were so much about throwing people into jail (3 strikes laws, etc.) that the laws don't really fit the crimes. Lobbyists were able to push through much stricter penalties than should have been necessary to deter aberrant behavior: $5000 per illegal song downloaded, 5 years jail for a DDoS attack, 35 years jail for DL-ing JSTOR and throwing it on the web.

These laws really out of balance and need to be challenged under the eight amendment of the Constitution:

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

You can't compare locking people out of one Walmart to locking people out of Walmart.com. Walmart.com's sales dwarf any individual store. Plus there's more of a trickle.
 
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