Ooooops!

David Kristofferson kristoff at net.bio.net
Thu Mar 3 01:13:31 EST 1994


In article <2l3mri$mhu at news.u.washington.edu>,
Kris Carroll <kcarroll at u.washington.edu> wrote:
>In article <2l294j$1kd at net.bio.net> kristoff at net.bio.net (David  
>Kristofferson) writes:
>> *** I CAUTION READERS*** that libel laws *do* apply to anything that
>> you decide to post, so those who feel that they can say anything with
>> impunity on the newsgroups are seriously deluding themselves.
>> 
>> 
>> 				Dave Kristofferson
>> 				BIOSCI/bionet Manager
>
>
>Politely, I disagree with this portion of your post. Libel law has not yet  
>been applied to the net as far as I know. And I can't see that such a test  
>would hold up considering the ability of many to forge posts, usurp  
>accounts, lack of ability to authenitcate posts etc. (Whose archive of  
>USENET groups do you trust?) Can you provide additional information or  
>proof?
>
>Kris Carroll

Kris,

Thank you for politely disagreeing, especially when manners seem to be
out of fashion on the "Information Superhighway."

This lack of knowledge about these issues is widespread unfortunately
and is why I posted this item in CAPS.  Legal tests have in fact been
made.  I refer you to "Internet World" magazine which had an article
by a legal expert a few months back on this very issue and cited a
specific case.  Unfortunately my copy of the magazine issue in
question is at home, not here in the office, so I can't give you the
precise reference.  Look in the Nov. 93 issue (plus or minus two
months).  I'll look it up when I get home tonight (hopefully before
midnight).  I wouldn't have made the statement quoted above,
especially not in CAPS, if I had not already read about this issue
which is something that obviously concerns managers of newsgroup
networks.  I posted that item not because I was thinking of bringing
any libel suits myself (I love getting attacked on the net, of course
8-), but to warn those who are attacking others that this is not a
free-for-all and that they are incurring risks when they do so.  Some
day they might wake up with a summons from someone instead of a
relatively mild warning message from that facist running dog Dave
Kristofferson who loves to trample on the rights of all free speaking
USENET users, etc., etc.

P.S. - I ought to write a computer program which generates insults
about myself.  The only catch would be that it collects a penny for
each use.  I could license it to just one or two sites in the U.S. and
retire a wealthy man 8-).

				Sincerely,

				Dave "looking for a new haven" Kristofferson
				BIOSCI/bionet Manager

				biosci-help at net.bio.net



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