Earlier today, we noted that a new law in Finland would, among other things, let the recording industry take out newspaper ads with the names of those caught file sharing. With the comments to that story suggesting that at least some people would wear that as a badge of honor, it's worth wondering how effective the "name and shame" punishment plan is. However, it seems to be becoming much more popular. While by no means new, it appears that more states are planning to get back at tax evaders by putting their names on the web. Still it does make you wonder how effective these plans are? While the Finnish plan appears to be in newspapers, and not on the web, how many people actually go read these "shame lists?" The web-based ones may show up in search engines, obviously, and that could cause problems when (for example) someone is checking you out for a job or for a date. However, it does raise questions about what happens to the person who is falsely accused -- or for people who have the same names as a tax cheater.
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