[free-sklyarov] Re: Continuing the fight

Christopher R. Maden crism at maden.org
Sun Dec 16 22:53:15 PST 2001

Hash: SHA1

At 21:49 16-12-2001, Richard Stallman wrote:
>I did not know that this was a plea bargain--I heard that charges had
>been dropped.  That puts it in a very different light: he has done
>harm to others that far exceeds the harm he has avoided for himself.

How so?  AFAIK, he only plans to testify to the truth, and has not changed 
his story since his arrest.  All indications are that he will be testifying 
for the government and for Elcom, and testifying to the same facts for both 

I don't think the facts are really at issue here; the only point I've heard 
contested is whether Dmitry's name was listed as a copyright holder in the 
"About box" for the version of AEBPR that Adobe purchased.  The debate 
seems entirely legal, and Dmitry's plea bargain shouldn't affect that.

>I won't claim I would have done better, since I have never been in
>that situation--but the question of how strong I am is beside the
>point.  Sklyarov had a duty to resist, and he failed in his duty.

???  In what sense did he have a duty?  This wasn't a prearranged test 
case; this was a guy visiting a foreign country getting grabbed, and 
finding a way to go home again.  Not everyone sees his own life as a 
continuing moral struggle.

>It appears that another consequence is that he will be unable to help
>our movement by speaking.  In effect, he has defected.

Defected from what?  He never signed up for "[y]our movement".  The 
movement co-opted him as a symbol.

To be clear: I detest the DMCA and have fought for Dmitry's freedom both 
because of that and because his particular case was unjust.  But I neither 
expected nor required him to sign up as a symbol of anything or even as a 
grateful participant.  If, when he gets home, he wants to tell all his 
friends about the crazy American hackers who took to the streets, that's 
fine with me.

>So who is for a loud boycott and picketing of Adobe?

I've been boycotting Adobe since the arrest.  But I honestly don't know if 
a resurgence in the mass boycott is viable, since the original calls for 
boycott were dropped when they dropped the complaint.  It would seem 
capricious, I think, to suddenly reinstate them, unless we could get a 
large group of people who never stopped to come forward.

- -- 
Libertarian candidate, California State Assembly, District 13
Free Sklyarov: <URL: http://www.freesklyarov.org/ >
Freelance text nerd: <URL: http://crism.maden.org/ >
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