[free-sklyarov] Linux update withholds security info on DMCA terror

Matthew Russotto russotto at pond.com
Fri Nov 2 12:06:19 PST 2001

 "tom poe" <tompoe at renonevada.net> wrote:

> On Friday 02 November 2001 10:35, Matthew Russotto wrote:
> > > I'm afraid I have to agree with Kenneth Burger over the latest Alan
> > move.  He's deliberately overstating the DMCA and taking extreme actions
> > order to draw attention to the cause, and he's punishing Linux users and
> > maintainers to do it.
> Hi:  Whew!  Pretty strong stuff, don't you think?  Or do you think?
> just maybe you should think about this.

Please try to avoid the gratuitious insults.

> The DMCA is a big hammer.  If it
> doesn't go away, you and I will see Linux go away.  The Alan Cox's of the
> world will not only post that they fear the DMCA, but they just plain
> post.  Period.  What you tasted, with Alan Cox taking the time to post
> he wasn't going to post, and providing the reason for not posting, was a
> glimpse of the future.  Keep the DMCA and lose Linux, Open Source,
> as we know them, and enjoy your expensive new "certified, registered,
> approved" entertainment device.  GET A GRIP, Matthew.  <grin>   Tom

Believe me, I'm no fan of the DMCA.  I've had run-ins with it myself.  An
example appropriate
to this list (because of the server it is on):  There's an old Infocom game
called "A Mind Forever Voyaging".
As copy protection, it requires you to enter a password found by looking
things up in a table or on a code wheel provided for it.  Neither the code
wheel nor the table is accessible to the blind.  A blind fan of interactive
fiction asked that someone provide an accessible table.  I disassembled the
program, figured out how it generated the codes, and wrote another program
to generate a table from the data in the original program.  THAT program was
a circumvention device.  The resulting table was also a circumvention
device.  My sending that table to the person
who asked for it was distribution of a circumvention device.  Information
about Linux security fixes, given that the fixes themselves are not
circumvention devices?  Sorry, not a circumvention device.  Censoring the
ChangeLog is just a political move.

The DMCA does not threaten Linux or Open Source in general (though it treads
all over specific projects).  It's bad enough, it doesn't need to be

(as for the device:  Sorry, feds, both table and program were lost when my
ISP discarded its servers without warning.  Besides, no profit was involved
and I doubt you'll get a complaint out of Activision)

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