EFF News March The Electronic Front

Found at: gopher.meulie.net:70/EFFector/effect01.03

***           EFF News #1.03  (March 7, 1991)            ***
***       The Electronic Frontier Foundation, Inc.       ***
***                        Welcome                       ***

Editors:  Mitch Kapor  (mkapor@eff.org)
          Mike Godwin  (mnemonic@eff.org)

REPRINT PERMISSION GRANTED: Material in EFF News may be reprinted if you
cite the source.  Where an individual author has asserted copyright in
an article, please contact her directly for permission to reproduce.

***            EFF News #1.03: EFF update                ***
***                   By Mitch Kapor                     ***

EFF Report
Compiled by Mitch Kapor

*** CASE UPDATES, by Mike Godwin***
Len Rose 

	EFF's support and Mitch's independent funding of Len's defense 
Len is being made an example of, and the extent to which he can be 
used as justification for increased law-enforcement activity in this area. 
Had we not intervened in Len's support, it seems likely not only that 
but also that bad law would have been made by his federal and state 

Acid, Optik, and Scorpion

	"Acid Phreak" and "The Scorpion" received preindictment 
letters from federal prosecutors in New York, while "Phiber Optik" was 
ndicted by a state grand jury. Phiber's case has been resolved; he pled
expected to be limited to community service when he is sentenced on 
April 4. 

	EFF has chosen not to become involved in these cases at this 
early stage, primarily because it is unclear whether the cases will raise 
mportant Constitutional or civil-liberties issues, but we are tracking
them closely.

Washington v. Riley

	Although we initially favored involvement in this case, EFF's 
legal committee later decided that prudent management of our 
financial and legal resources dictated that we withhold our formal 
nvolvement here. This case raises important issues, but control of our
costs and management of our time has forced us to make some hard 
that this case would not represent the best investment of our limited 

	We have remained in touch with Riley's attorney, however, and 


	Other important legal matters are currently receiving 
considerable attention.  Because these are of a sensitive nature, we will 
not be able to disclose details until some time in the future.  Please bear 

*** LEGAL CASE MANAGEMENT, by Mitch Kapor ***

	On February 6,  Harvey Silverglate, Sharon Beckman, Tom 
Viles, and Gia Baresi (all of Silverglate and Good), Mike Godwin, and I 
all had dinner together at Harvey's house.    We reached a number of 
mportant conclusions about improving the effectiveness and reducing
the cost of the legal programs of the foundation. 

	S&G want are willing to allocate additional people to the EFF 
account in order to have some extra capacity to handle peak loads.  
Tom Viles will be working with us.  He's very ACLU-knowledgeable.  
He is serving on a national ACLU committee which has just 

	S&G sees EFF as being its ongoing client, as opposed to their 
usual mode of operation which is to represent an individual or 
organization for a particular case.  In essence,  S&G is becoming the 
EFF's outside litigation counsel.  With both parties located in Boston, it 
client fee schedule.
	We discussed streamlining the legal review process.  Everyone 
felt that it's wasteful and inefficient to have several lawyers looking 
nto each possible new case and to have conference calls for making

*** LEGAL AND POLICY PROJECTS, by Mitch Kapor ***

Sysop liability

	We are engaged in an internal discussion about the limits of 
be in this area in order to provide a philosophical framework for 

Massachusetts Computer Crime Bill

	We are once again working with the Mass. Computer Software 
Council in an effort to pass a progressive computer crime bill which 
overbreadth.  Sharon, Mike, and I are all working on this.  Sharon has 
There will be a series of briefings for legislators and other other parties 
as well.

Guidelines for Computer Search and Seizure

	Previously Terry Gross and Nick Poser of Rabinowitz, Boudin 
Subsequently, Mike Godwin revised those for a paper and presentation 
to be given at the Computer Virus conference upcoming shortly.  At 
the recent CPSR Policy Roundtable, it became apparent that we needed 
to take more of top-down approach in order to gain adoption and 
mplementation of these guidelines by federal and state law
enforcement agencies.

	We are now in the process of structuring an important project, 
to be led by Mike, which will target the FBI and other key agencies for a 
n navigating our way through the bureaucratic maze in Washington.

Computer Bulletin Boards, Computer Networks, and the Law

	In addition to the computer crime bill work and development of 
on the legal issues surrounding computer bulletin boards.  There has 
already been a great deal of discussion about this issue on the net on 
the Well's EFF conference.  There have been a small number of law 
offered a comprehensive proposal as to how to  place  BBSes and 
network carriers in the same legal framework as print publications, 
common carriers, and broadcasters.

	This project, which will involve a collective effort of all EFF 
the fundamental common aspects  and  differentiating attributes  of 
be done in order to propose basic approaches to issues of government 
censorship, rights and restrictions  of private network carriers and 
liabilities of system operators and users for activities and 
communication using network facilities.

	This is an ambitious undertaking, which will commence with a 
formal issues development process, the deliverable of which will 
nitially take some written form such as a published paper or position
this process in order to develop a consensus.

	As a starting point, I offer the notion that a computer bulletin 
board ought to be treated as a legal hybrid.  For certain purposes, e.g., 
the right of the publisher to be free from government censorship of 
content, it should be treated as though it were a print publication.  But 
a BBS operator should have less liability for the content of the board 
than the publisher of a magazine.  In many cases it is simply 
mpossible, given the volume of posting, for a sysop to review new
approach would be to show that the elements of the legal treatment 

	The ACLU is beginning to take an interest in this area. We will 


	There are other worthwhile projects competing for attention as 
Roundtable, there was a great deal of interest in a project to educate 
users of computers networks about their rights and responsibilities.  
There is also interest in understanding successful techniques in the 
for external sanctions.   My current judgment is that our "policy 

CPSR FOIA Requests  

	Mike Godwin attended a meeting in Washington between 
Rotenberg of CPSR. This meeting, initiated by the Secret Service, took 
two FOIA requests concerning, respectively, Sundevil and non-
Sundevil computer-crime investigations by the Secret Service. Mike 
took part in the discussion, and is supporting CPSR's FOIA effort by 
files CPSR is seeking. 


	The first issue of the EFFector print newsletter is at the printer.  
Gerard van der Leun contributed much time and energy to seeing this 
through.  I think we will all be very pleased with its maiden voyage.  
EFFector is aimed at an audience not already assumed to be intimately 
familiar with issues on the electronic frontier.  

	The newsletter will be distributed to people on our mailing list 
are printing about 10,000 copies.

	The production values are very professional without looking 
too slick or glitzy.  (Gerard was able to persuade a graphic designer to 
think it communicates our basic concerns and positions quite well.  
There is a piece by Barlow on the origins of the EFF.  I have my "Why 
Defend Hackers" article.  There are features on "20 Things You Can Do 
to Advance the Electronic Frontier" culled from postings on the Well, 
a Washington update by Marc Rotenberg, and many other worthwhile 

	We are aiming for a four times yearly publication frequency.  
Beginning with issue two we will work out a subscription / 
membership plan and arrangement.


	Mike published issue 1.02 of EFF News which contained excerpts 
from a dialog on the Well about searches and seizures, reader 

EFF Host System

	The system is now fully connected to the Internet.  Mike and I 
are using some better tools for managing mail and news which are 

Director of Communications Job

	A job description for this position was circulated on the net and 
to people whom I thought were likely to know good candidates.  So far 
expect to follow up on this matter intensively this week.  At the same 
time, Gerard van der Leun and I are discussing ways he can be 
activities.  Gerard has drafted a detailed plan of attack (strategy and 
tactics) for the director of communications.

Online Services

	Comp.org.eff.talk has reached critical mass as a Usenet 
newsgroup, with discussions proceeding autonomously. Mike has been 
following the newsgroup, occasionally contributing to the discussions 
and answering questions, but allowing the group to take its own 

	The Telecom Forum on Compuserve has opened with an EFF 
Host.  Scott  and Marilyn Loftesness are the hosts.  EFF Well 
encouraged to drop in.

	John and I will be appearing on a live Genie conference on 
Sunday May 12th at 9 P.M.  Tom Sherman organized this.

	Gerard van der Leun has been developing a strategic plan for an 
EFF publications department.  I share here some of his thoughts.

	Purposes of EFF electronic and print publications:

-	to spread the word about the EFF
-	to alert the membership and the media to activities of the EFF
-	to increase active and supporting membership
-	to persuade and enlighten those who do not currently support 
the EFF
-	to argue persuasively for the positions of the EFF
-	to cover costs of all publications thru donations or sales of 

	In addition to the print and online projects you are familiar 
"Crime and Puzzlement" could be transformed into an informative 
membership packages and as handouts at key conferences and 
computer shows.

	Gerard's work will give whoever fills the Director of 
Communications role a big jump start.

CPSR Policy Roundtable 

	The event was a great success.  We encountered the FBI face-to-
face in the person of Al Bayse.  This prompted us to work toward 
enforcement agencies could conduct computer-based investigations 
and searches more effectively and in a way which is fully respectful of 
civil liberties.

"Freedom and Responsibility on Computer Networks"

	The Computer Science and Telecommunications Board (CSTB) 
approved my proposal to hold a strategic forum in the area of freedom 
and responsibility on computer networks.  The proposal now must be 
approved by the higher-ups at the National Research Council, but this 
s more or less a formality.  The forum will consist of an invitational
of report or publications produced at the end of the process which will 
bear the imprimatur of the National Academy of Science, whose 
findings carry a lot of weight in Washington.  I expect to serve on the 


	We were contacted by the IRS for routine followup information 
on our application.  We responded promptly.  It is usual that once 
applications reach this stage of active consideration they move through 
the pipeline quickly.  I am cautiously optimistic that we will have our 
tax-deductible status granted in March or April.

Membership and Fundraising

	Once we receive our tax-deductible status, we will be in a better 
for the Board to set a strategic direction for the long-term financial 
to consider a wide range of alternatives which include individual and 
corporate donations, a membership campaign, and other creative 


Scientific American

	I will be writing a 3500 word article with the pseudo-title "Civil 
Liberties in Cyberspace" for the September issue of Scientific American.  
This is to be a single topic issue devoted entirely to computers and 
computer networks.  I intend to provide an overview of the civil 
liberties issues we are confronting on the electronic frontier.

American Bar Association

	The ABA held their mid-year meeting in Seattle on February 
Rights and spoke to civil liberties issues on computer networks.  The 
turn-out at this event was modest, as was the impact, and I would not 

	On February 15th I spoke about the EFF to the PSITech user 
Attendees included system managers from NYU, Columbia, and other 
NYC area universities and research institutions.

National Council of Churches of Christ

	During the same trip in which Mike attended CPSR's meeting 
National Council of Churches of Christ, at their invitation. The 
audience, which was composed of members of several technically 
oriented subcommittees of this ecumenical organization, and they 
listened with interest as Mike discussed the social and civil-liberties 
mplications of computer-based communications. The NCCC already
network might serve as the basis for an online virtual community. 

Whole Earth Review

	Mike Godwin has written both a review of Tom Forester's 
computer ethics book and a short article on EFF and electronic 
communities for an upcoming issue of  Whole Earth Review.


	Wednesday, January 30th.  I spoke to Dennis Allison's class.  The 
TV network.


Esther Dyson Personal Computer Forum

	Tuscon, March 12.  John Barlow will be speaking to the 
luminaries of the PC industry about the EFF.  Mitch will be attending.

Computer Freedom and Privacy Conference

	Upcoming March 25-29 in San Fransisco.  Mitch, Mike, John, 
Harvey Silverglate, and Sharon Beckman are all planning on 
attending.  The EFF will be sponsoring Craig Neidorf, Steve Jackson, 
and Optik (partial support).

American Society for Industrial Security

	Washington, D.C. April 17th.  Speech by Mitch.

	On 3/29 John and I will be speaking at Xerox PARC.

Boston Computer Society

	I will be speaking to the Telecommunications user group about 
the EFF on Monday April 22nd.

Asilomar Microcomputer Conference

	On April 24-26, I will be attending and speaking about the EFF.  
John is also attending.  Asilomar is an invitational event sponsored by 
the IEEE which is a small, informal, interactive forum for people 
nvolved in the design and applications of microcomputers.

Federal High-Tech Crime Investigation Committee

	At the invitation of Gail Thackeray, I will be appearing in 
Tuscon at a meeting of this committee in June.  The committee 
consists of about 35 law enforcement professionals from various 
federal agencies.

From John Barlow:

	'April Fool's Day: (appropriately) I  will be banquet speaker at the  
Multimedia Roundtable in Los Angeles.  I will  talk about "thickening  
Cyberspace", the process by which we introduce a greater sense of  
next day.

	'April 16: I will orate over more digestion at the Annual 
Conference on High Speed Computing in Salashan, Oregon. Title of the

	'April 20: I will be speaking at the 2nd Conference on Cyberspace 
n Santa Cruz on the usual stuff.

	'May 7: I will give the keynote at the Department of Energy's 
Computer Security Group Annual meeting in Concord, California.

	'June 4: Same deal for the Pacific Military Computer Conference 
n Hawaii.

	'And so on and so forth.

	'Somewhere in there I hope to get a book finished too.'



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The EFF has been established to help civilize the electronic frontier;
to make it truly useful and beneficial to everyone, not just an elite;
and to do this in a way that is in keeping with our society's highest
traditions of the free and open flow of information and communication.

EFF News will present news, information, and discussion about the world
of computer-based communications media that constitute the electronic
frontier. It will cover issues such as freedom of speech in digital
media, privacy rights, censorship, standards of responsibility for users
and operators of computer systems, policy issues such as the development
of national information infrastructure, and intellectual property.

Views of individual authors represent their own opinions, not
necessarily those of the EFF.


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