Stick To Downloading Child Porn, Not Movies, If You Want Short Jail Sentences

from the misplaced-priorities-much? dept

We mentioned recently that politicians are looking to expand the DMCA, hoping to crack down on the possession of any tool that would help to circumvent DRM. As if this weren't draconian enough, some have noticed sentencing guidelines contained in the law that seem really out of synch with other federal statutes. The bill's new revisions would allow for 10-year sentences for music and software piracy. This is longer than the five years one can get for assaulting a police officer, and the seven years for downloading child pornography. This seems like misplaced priorities, and poor use of the government's criminal justice resources. This is particularly strange, in light of the fact that The Justice Department is stepping up their fight against child porn. This includes new measures that would create more liability for ISPs, among others (nevermind that such liability is misplaced, since the ISPs aren't actually the ones engaging in criminal behavior). Still, any law that would make piracy a more severe crime than child porn is an indication that the government has completely lost its priorities, and is totally at the whim of its industry donors.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Phillip Vector, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 10:38am

    Umm..

    Argh... can't... take... stupidy.....

    *Head Explodes*

     

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  2.  
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    Chris, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 10:39am

    Accountability

    Come on, we're getting the best government money can buy. What's all the fuss for? If you don't like what congress is pushing, you just need to buy your own congressman.

     

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  3.  
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    Beck, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 10:42am

    Learned my Lesson

    I think after a month in prison I'd get the message that I should not copy a movie. To take away 10 years of someone's life seems a bit harsh.

     

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  4.  
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    TriZz, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 10:42am

    WTF?!

    Assaulting a police officer and downloading pr0n are less penalties than if I give a copy of a CD to a friend of mine?!

    ...what has this world come to?

    If a Catholic preist gets caught touching alter boys, he just gets relocated...

    ...what has this world come to?

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 10:48am

    Judges Discretion...

    I would hope that judges would use reasonable discretion if this goes through. A 10 year max is absurd, but it is only a maximum sentence. One hopes that the justice system would be more reasonable in its sentencing in practice.

     

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  6.  
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    widepart, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 10:51am

    Stick To Downloading Child Porn

    "Still, any law that would make piracy a more severe crime than child porn is an indication that the government has completely lost its priorities, and is totally at the whim of its industry donors."

    AND THIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE A SURPRISE?

    TAKE A LOOK AROUND, The U S is slowly but surely turning into a 'dictatorship' the signs are there. Lying to the citizens - laws that protect only the minority of the population (rich minority) - one per cent of the population controls most of the wealth and power and write laws to protect their own interests. The U S is a debt ridden country which at present is quickly turning itself towards becoming a second and if this trend continues and third world nation. I only hope the population comes to realize this and take back the control they've lost with the present government. Take a good around you, I'm sure you will agree; and if you don't your missing the signs that the rest world sees clearly.

     

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  7.  
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    Silver, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 10:56am

    Re: Stick To Downloading Child Porn

    Unfortunately I'd have to agree with you, It's sad but the people have definately lost control of this country. Long gone are the days when it only took a few villages and some weapons to take back rights, so the government is slowly twisting things to support the rich and powerful. Is there any surprise that the US has the highest per capita imprisonment rate of any country?

     

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  8.  
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    Bambi, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:00am

    Agreed, Chris.
    You can only get ahead today if you can buy a senator...or atleast rent one every so often.
    This irritates me to no end. We need to just overturn the whole government and start over.

     

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  9.  
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    Leslie Merrick, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:05am

    Re: Learned my Lesson

    I think after 5 minutes in jail I would have learned my lesson... actually, you know what? It just isn't worth it!!!! Does this mean I can't copy the discs I get from Netflix?

     

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  10.  
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    Greg, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:05am

    That's awesome, only 5 years? I'm totally going to go punch a cop now.

     

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  11.  
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    fsckr, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:06am

    This is preposterous. As has been mentioned before on this site, many of the the offences the DMCA seems to punish are simple copyright infringement cases, a civil matter that should be settled btw infringer & infringee which brings me to my favorite quote:
    If you copy Craig David's CD you get ten years, but if you punch him in the face and pummel him into a seven day coma you will only get six. You are more likely to get the respect of the prison population with your six year sentence as well.

     

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  12.  
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    Annon Coward II, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:08am

    No, this is a great law...

    Not to worry! Now pedophiles will get 17 years for illegally downloading **copyrighted** pr0n!

    On a serious note, it is bad public policy for the government to make armed robbery a less serious crime than copyright infringement.

     

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  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:09am

    This stuff has been going on regardless of which adminstration is in office. And while I abhore the laws that are being writtin in this country, I also hate the fact that Ameica is always blamed for everything. We have a corupt government, what about Mexico? We are losing our rights, what about the rights the Iraqies didn't have? One percent of the population controls the wealth. Back up your statement with facts. And even if it were true, so what? Become one of the rich. You can actually do that in this country. No, here is a better idea, tax the rich so they aren;t rich and give it to the lazy, oh excuse me, those less fortunate.

     

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  14.  
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    cjay, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:17am

    Cruel and Unusual

    Any chance, should this become law, it could get overturned by the first 'convict' as cruel and unusual?

     

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  15.  
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    Sacrelig, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:18am

    Effect Change

    It's not enough to just cast your vote these days. There are too many knuckleheads out there who will vote in opposition without knowing why.

    To take back control of the country doesn't require a violent revolution or even massive wealth. It takes all of us who see things for what they are to be more proactive and articulate with the people around us. We can formulate reasonable and understandable arguments for and against policies and persons. These statements CAN impact those around us and that can in turn change the direction of our country.

    I hate to say it, but moaning and groaning online isn't enough, though it certainly is a magnificent way to disseminate information to the minority willing to absorb it. Now that we know what's wrong...lets show everyone how it can be right.

     

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  16.  
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    barfo mcbarfqueen, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:21am

    Re:

    this is why i don't like the far right.

    they're blind


    i also don't like the far left

    they're also blind.

     

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  17.  
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    Kevin Lehman, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:29am

    To hell in a handbasket

    What is really strange is that someone could break into my home and STEAL my entire CD/Movie collection and get less time than downloading one illegal item.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:32am

    Re: To hell in a handbasket

    Of course, I better hope they don't hurt themselves while breaking in, or I could get sued for millions!!

     

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  19.  
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    Dylan johnston, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:46am

    k.

    I live in canada.

     

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  20.  
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    chucklesjh, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:56am

    WTF

    People have had less of a sentence for killing someone. This is just plan ridiculous. It's just like what the last person was talking about, you get sued if a robber hurts themselves on a knife in your house...what the hell? I seriously think the US government is way out of line.

    The one thing I'm wondering is, do you still recieve a warning first before they go about doing anything? If not, I don't think that's fair. If I recieved a warning that proved I downloaded something, like a screenshot and some other outstanding info, and a description of what could happen, then and only then will I start to believe this shit.

    Many bands, aside from Metallica, believe that p2p is actually helping their sales. If it weren't for p2p, I never would have bought the entire collection of Iced Earth CDs or ever even heard of overseas bands like Xystus, that kind of music can't even be purchased here, or even heard on the radio for fuck's sake.

    I know there are people that will disagree with me as well as some that agree, but to each his own. The majority of p2p users are college/high school students that cannot afford to spend money on every thing they want. If these people would come up with some sort of reasonable prices, then piracy wouldn't be as much of an issue. Granted at time of release, DVD movies and music CDs are cheaper...but what if I can't get it when it comes out? I'm forced to pay $19 for a CD or $25 for a DVD, that's just plain ridiculous.

     

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  21.  
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    chucklesjh, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 11:58am

    Re: WTF

    apologies for spelling errors :-)

     

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  22.  
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    Mike Riaa, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 12:09pm

    Riaa Sucks Balls.

    F the RIAA, F the congress, F the DMCA, F bush, F you all. I am going to continue to rent dvds, copy them and share them with my friends. F YOU!

     

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  23.  
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    Arthur Miller, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 12:18pm

    WTF

    "I'm forced to pay $19 for a CD or $25 for a DVD..."

    I'm so with you there, dude. I hate that when the Media Police drag me down to Tower Records and beat me with clubs until I shell out my $19 for the latest American Idol compilation.

    Don't like the price someone is charging for their product? Just steal it! They shouldn't have charged so much for it anyway.

    What the hell? If you don't want to pay $19 for something, don't buy it. Don't use high prices as your justification for stealing. Because that's what you are doing on P2P networks. Rationalize it however you want, but don't pretend you're not a thief, because you are. So am I, but I don't pretend I'm doing somebody a favor by ripping off their work.

     

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  24.  
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    dmca suxx, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 12:42pm

    Anonymous Coward Misses the Point

    "And while I abhore the laws that are being writtin in this country, I also hate the fact that Ameica is always blamed for everything. We have a corupt government, what about Mexico? We are losing our rights, what about the rights the Iraqies didn't have?"

    The point is that the USA used to be a great country and now it is going to shit because of greedy corporations. It's crap if someone has a potentially heavier jail sentence for downloading a ripped copy of the latest chili peppers single than for getting off on kiddie porn (those f*ers should be shot, not put in jail).

     

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  25.  
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    Taxed to death, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 12:49pm

    Bill the media companies

    It will cost us a quarter million dollars to imprison a person for 10 years for possessing a copy of DVD Shrink.

    While we get taxed to pay for this scheme, the legislators, who wrote this law, are getting their pockets lined by the media companies.

    We should bill the media companies for all the added costs of this law.

    The rich get richer and the poor get poorer.

     

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  26.  
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    widepart, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 12:50pm

    Re: by Anonymous Coward on Apr 26th, 2006

    I am. But that does not make things better, it only means that I won't be affected by the econmic failure the U S is going to have as soon as most of the rest of your country and mine.
    I am not an American, but when something as big as the United States fails the ramifications are international.

    So, change the ways you guys do things or you'll be up against hard times you can't even imagine; AND STOP BLAMING YOUR COUNTRY'S PROBLEMS ON OTHER COUNTRIES OR OTHER PEOPLE.

    The situations that are causing these problems are HOMEGROWN!
    THINK ABOUT IT.

     

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  27.  
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    RenderingSanity, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 2:22pm

    barfo I couldn't agree with you more. I am a moderate leaning right and can't stand radicals on either side. As much as I would love an idealic world, it doesn't/won't/never ever ever will exsist and when idealists get into power everyone who doesn't follow their lifestyle gets porked.

     

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  28.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 3:06pm

    can i be honest without being flamed plz. i am probably from the top 2% of the nation and i dont like these laws. not all of us are heartless greedy pigs. most of us are hard working and believe in freedom as much as the rest of the nation (atleast the rest who are smart). i have written to my senator many a time concerning these laws. the wealthy of this nation dont always support this.

    (i am a 17 yr old teenager, so i am probably going to be called a rich brat, ive heard it before so flame away if you must)

     

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  29.  
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    Nova Lounge, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 3:20pm

    Retarded...

    So the takeaway is that if we want more stringent child porn penalties, we need to bulk-transfer copyright of all images of sexual exploitation to the MPAA/RIAA members?

    Yeech. Copyright was, until recently, a civil matter. Stupidity like this makes me very happy to be an independent, relatively unaffiliated musician..

    Blah.

     

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  30.  
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    Laughing, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 3:30pm

    "This stuff has been going on regardless of which adminstration is in office. And while I abhore the laws that are being writtin in this country, I also hate the fact that Ameica is always blamed for everything. We have a corupt government, what about Mexico? We are losing our rights, what about the rights the Iraqies didn't have? One percent of the population controls the wealth. Back up your statement with facts. And even if it were true, so what? Become one of the rich. You can actually do that in this country. No, here is a better idea, tax the rich so they aren;t rich and give it to the lazy, oh excuse me, those less fortunate."

    Seems we have an ostrich in our midst, say, I can imagine you think Nixon did a great job and Reagan was the best president. Go ahead and blather on, it's people like you that amuse me....

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 5:29pm

    "Seems we have an ostrich in our midst, say, I can imagine you think Nixon did a great job and Reagan was the best president. Go ahead and blather on, it's people like you that amuse me...."

    im a liberal, so is my family. we arent heartless republicans. we actually give a shit about the enviroment and we are a part of the 48% smarter in '04. im def not voting republican in '08 when i can vote. just because someone is rich doesnt make them heartless, ignorant, stupid, greedy, racist or vote for personal reasons. my family puts america before ourselves when voting. money doesnt mean evil. alot of people who do have money though are ruthless and do whatever it takes to get it. we arent. i could say that someone has a soviet flag in their house and automaticly assume they are communist. just because people think money=evil people, doesnt make it true. communist flag in house = person automatically a communist makes no sense. im not going to argue more. if you think that me being from a well off family makes me a pompeous ass who thinks i am better than you then be it. i dont think im better than anyone and most of my friends dont either. there are alot of stereotypes that arent true. if you are from the south are you automatically a hick? if you are from san fransico are you automatically homosexual? no. these are stereotypes that arent true. i do know people who do live out the stereotype but our family doesnt affiliate with them. ok, let the flameing begin.

     

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  32.  
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    Opus Rex, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 5:36pm

    Re: Judges Discretion...

    Federal Judges don't usually have any discretion. that has been taken away by Congress and replaced with mandetory sentences. At best, they have a range of sentences, but most newly legislative crimes have set punishment.

     

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  33.  
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    anonymous coward, Apr 26th, 2006 @ 7:41pm

    Re: Judges Discretion.. & Sentencing guidelines

    Put em all in jail. Starting with the richest..

    see how long the law's enforced.. Hmm?

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2006 @ 7:34am

    Irony

    The irony is that during the 10 year prision sentence the downloader would watch many movies for free on the prision tv system.

    Furthermore, we the tax payers will have to pay 40K+ a year per prisioner. I say let the movie studios and record labels pay for the cost of incarceration.

     

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  35.  
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    steve, Apr 27th, 2006 @ 7:39am

    Re: give it to the lazy?

    hey AC talk about lazy? how do you find time to give us your moronic opinion on every single tech article? My god you never stop...every day you hold court for us. but this last comment is stupider than your usual inane drivvle. spare us.. get a life.

     

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  36.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 27th, 2006 @ 10:28am

    Re:

    It's laudable a young person such as yourself is actually taking the time to *do* whatever you can. Keep writing those letters, get a good education, and keep your head screwed on straight - who knows? Maybe someday you'll be one receiving those letters and in a position to act on them. ;-)

     

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  37.  
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    CrazyRay, Apr 27th, 2006 @ 10:51am

    It's THEIR fault

    If movie theaters weren't raping us on ticket sales...if movies made it to cable/satellite faster...if DVDs came out after the movie leaves the theater...if radio stations didn't play music that you can't even buy for 2 months...if radio stations and MTV/etc. didn't hype the hell out of artists like they're the hottest new thing...if music artists made albums with more than 2 decent songs...
    ...then there wouldn't be a problem

     

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  38.  
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    Grace Smith, May 2nd, 2006 @ 5:09am

    This is awfull

    what has this world come to?

     

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  39.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 5th, 2006 @ 6:33pm

    Re: Stick To Downloading Child Porn

    Oh piss off

     

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  40.  
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    Luka, Oct 11th, 2007 @ 10:09pm

    railroad

    well my boyfriend was on probation and his probation officer came out to our house with no notice and took all 3 computers and they found porn on one of the computers but he has three nephews that have access to the computers and I know for a fact that one of his nephews are into child porn because he got caught looking at it at his moms house but yet my boyfriend is getting in trouble for it. When I am sure his nephew did it. They have no proof my boyfriend did it. I have known my boyfriend for 19 years and he is not that way. But there is no way to prove it so the goverment says he did it. But yet the goverment has no proof who did it. My boyfriend was on probation for trafficing drugs. Not for porn. We did not know any porn was on any of the computers. So yeah I think the goverment is real messed up. They are telling me that my boyfriend could get life. Sorry for any misspelt words.

     

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  41.  
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    Aron, Feb 23rd, 2009 @ 12:59am

    Thank you

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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