According to The Register:

According to the indictment, Drew and others allegedly conspired to violate MySpace’s terms of service and intentionally inflict emotional distress on Megan, identified only as MTM in the court documents. The indictment alleges that Drew obtained a MySpace account under a fictitious name, used the account to garner information from a juvenile, and used that information to torment, humiliate and harass that member — all violations of the social-networking site’s terms of service.

That’s right, violation of the “Terms of Service” can be prosecuted as felonies if someone gets upset about what you write.  Of course this is just the thin edge.  It’s bad enough that people write 32 page documents about what you can or can’t do if you go to a site or run some software, now according to the fascist logic of the current United States Government, if someone is “injured” (and injury can be merely psychological) by your violation of the Terms of Service, you have commited a felony.

And don’t think that anonymity is easy to find.  According to this web site (hosted by Stony Brook University), TOR (The Onion Router) an anonymizing proxy service can be compromised with fairly minimal resources:

Our technique does not require compromise of any Tor nodes or collaboration of the end-server (for some scenarios). We demonstrate the effectiveness of our approach in tracking the IP address of Tor users in a series of experiments. Even for an under-provisioned adversary with only two network vantage points, we can accurately identify the end user (IP address) in many cases. Furthermore, we show that a well-provisioned adversary, using a topological map of the network, can trace-back the path of an anonymous user in under 20 minutes. Finally, we can trace an anonymous Location Hidden Service in approximately 120 minutes.

Of course, if you don’t spend too long on a site, it doesn’t matter.  I still recommend using a proxy server of some sort, but you have to evaluate which one works best for you.  I don’t trust most of the major ones. It’s not that I am doing anything illegal, it’s just that these days you have to prove you are innocent, not the other way around.

I have to wonder though, why we allow the government to contort the law, while ignoring issues such as the fact that the United States has dropped from 11th in the world in life expectency to 42nd?  I realize that Americans don’t want a medical doctor for president preferring lawyers and other dilettantes, but at some point you would hope that people will wake up from their slumber before we all are criminals or dead.

One Comment

  1. Neil says:

    Maybe that’s the plan…

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