PayPal Cuts Off Account For Bradley Manning Support

from the going-into-evil-territory dept

It's old news by this point that PayPal decided to cut off Wikileaks donations, following pressure from members of the US government (even if the State Department denies any official pressure, Joe Lieberman's public brow beating of companies shows that there was serious pressure at least from some in the government). However, Glyn Moody now points us to the news that PayPal has also decided to cut off the group "Courage to Resist," which was handling funds for Bradley Manning's defense effort. PayPal admits there's no legal basis for this. Apparently, the company just doesn't believe that some people should be allowed a fair trial:
The online payment provider PayPal has frozen the account of Courage to Resist, which in collaboration with the Bradley Manning Support Network is currently raising funds in support of U.S. Army Pfc. Bradley Manning. PayPal was one way people--especially international residents--were able to contribute to the grassroots effort supporting the accused WikiLeaks whistleblower. "We've been in discussions with PayPal for weeks, and by their own admission there’s no legal obligation for them to close down our account," noted Loraine Reitman of the Bradley Manning Support Network (Support Network). "This was an internal policy decision by PayPal."

[....] The Support Network repeatedly requested and was refused formal documentation from PayPal describing their policies in this matter.
The report also notes that they've had a PayPal account in good standing since 2006, with no problems at all. It's only once they were taking funds for Bradley Manning that PayPal shut them down. This is somewhat horrifying, frankly, and raises serious questions about PayPal as a business worth trusting.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Marcus Carab (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 9:50am

    Geohot is also taking PayPal donations for his defense against Sony. I suppose they better shut him down too...

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:22am

    PayPal continues to make themselves irrelevant by making such decisions.

     

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  3.  
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    blah, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:25am

    Another nail in PayPal's coffin

    While we're at it, why not just outlaw defense lawyers, since that's ultimately who is getting paid by these funds, right?

    I mean, we don't really need defense lawyers anyway if we just declare everyone guilty without due process, which we seem to be doing these days anyway.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:27am

    That's the nice thing about being a privately-owned company--Paypal can do as it pleases. Nothing "horrifying" about it. I respect their decision, even though I don't agree with it.

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:28am

    There never was any question about paypal as a business worth trusting.

     

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  6.  
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    A Dan (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:30am

    Paypal worth trusting?

    I'm pretty sure most people with significant experience with PayPal already distrusted them. They have a long history of freezing accounts.

    Example: http://sourceforge.net/blog/warning-to-open-source-projects-know-your-rights-with-paypal/

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:30am

    Re:

    Why do I have to respect their decision? I dont want to respect their decision, what are they going to do about that?

     

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  8.  
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    Matthew (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:30am

    Just closed my PayPal acct.

    I've had concerns about their commitment to privacy and security for a while now - their recent shenanigans are just the last straw.

     

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  9.  
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    Rich, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:31am

    Marijuana law reform groups have faced this problem with PayPal for years. When Sensible Washington started collecting signature for a pot reform initiative in Washington State last year, it took them about a month to find a financial institution willing to process donations for them. Increasingly we find access to the financial transaction system an impediment to free speech.

     

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  10.  
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    Jeremy Lyman (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:35am

    Re: Another nail in PayPal's coffin

    That's going a bit too far, don't you think? I mean who are we to say what profession people can have? Paypal isn't lobbying for laws against legal defense, just exhibiting a corporate political viewpoint through denial of service.

    We could however stop selling cars, groceries and electricity to defense attorneys. That's tots legit, brah!

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:37am

    Re: Re:

    Nobody said you have to do anything. Personally, I respect the rights of other people to make choices, even choices I don't agree with. I expect the same in return.

     

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  12.  
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    Lesath (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:38am

    Wow, I didn't realize people still used PayPal.

     

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  13.  
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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:38am

    Re:

    Paypal can do as it pleases

    They're perfectly free to submit to government pressure. Nothing wrong with that.

     

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  14.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:40am

    Things like this are what makes startups like Dwolla so much more relevant.

     

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    weneedhelp (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:40am

    This is somewhat horrifying, frankly, and raises serious questions about PayPal as a business worth trusting.

    Actually... it answers them quite clearly.

     

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  16.  
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    Chris-Mouse (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:40am

    Isn't this fraud?

    If paypal accepted payments to be credited to a specific account, then refuse to release the money from the account to the account holder, wouldn't this be considered fraud?

     

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  17.  
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    Steven (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:45am

    Re:

    That's nice, but what is a good alternative? (I'm seriously asking)

     

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  18.  
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    Rose M. Welch (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:47am

    ...raises serious questions about PayPal as a business worth trusting.

    Everything about PayPal raises serious questions about their trustworthiness.

    The answer to those questions? No. PayPal is not trustworthy.

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:47am

    Re: Re:

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:47am

    Paypal is pathetic period!!!!

     

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  21.  
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    Steven (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:48am

    Re: Re: Re:

    I think there is a difference between respecting a decision that you don't agree with and wanting something to be illegal. I don't think there should be a legal requirement for Pay Pal to not block the account, but I certainly don't respect the decision.

     

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  22.  
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    FatGiant (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:49am

    More and more each day it becomes obvious who is actually in power.

    No, it's no longer any government. No, forget about churches.

    Banks and Financial companies are the true and only power.

    Anyone need money to defend itself, there you go. Cut you from the money, easy win.

    World crisis? Not for banks, they got funds to stay afloat, and while the rest of the world is still trying to recover, they are already showing "AMAZING" profits and as usual, not paying taxes.

    So, nothing new here, just the same old, same old.

     

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  23.  
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    infowars, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:54am

    Just cancel

    Your accounts like I just did. They will ask you at the end of the process why your choosing to close your account. Tell them what your thinking right there. Enough people start doing that and they will change the tyrant tunes.

     

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  24.  
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    DCX2, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:54am

    "internal policy decision"

    I'm curious about the proximity of any calls from Sen. Joe Lieberman to PayPal's decision.

     

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  25.  
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    Qritiqal (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:54am

    Re: Re: Re:

    There is a big difference between respecting someone's RIGHT to a decision and respecting their actual DECISION.

    I respect people's right to choose their own religion, but if they choose anything but atheism I think they're an illogical, superstitious moron, so I don't have to respect their actual CHOICE.

     

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  26.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 10:55am

    Re: Re: Another nail in PayPal's coffin

    "Paypal isn't lobbying for laws against legal defense, just exhibiting a corporate political viewpoint through denial of service"

    I do have the feeling that Anonymous is going to get involved in this. After all one good dos deserves another ddos.

     

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  27.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:01am

    Re: Re:

    They're perfectly free to submit to government pressure. Nothing wrong with that.

    Just because it's legal doesn't mean there's nothing wrong with it.

     

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  28.  
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    Jeremy Lyman (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:07am

    Re: Just cancel

    I did too. Linked to this article in my rant.

     

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  29.  
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    Benny6Toes (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:11am

    Soooo...

    PayPal doesn't have to abide by its own Terms of Service? that's a pretty sweet deal right there that is.

     

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  30.  
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    A Dan (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:16am

    Re: Isn't this fraud?

    They've been very careful to avoid being classified as a bank in the US so they can avoid such restrictions as being required to give you your money.

     

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  31.  
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    The Original Anonymous Coward (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:30am

    Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    I see that the article only has quotes from the Brad Manning support organization. Has anyone thought to ask the evil, despicable, corrupt, vicious, back-stabbing, and unethical Paypal why they did this? (I mean, besides the person/group that wrote the blog article.)

     

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  32.  
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    Almighty Watashi, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:30am

    When was paypal ever "a business worth trusting"?

    The internet is full of horror stories from people getting paypal accounts frozen due to clerical errors, strange rules or unknown reasons. This is just another %&#$up people can add to the list and just continue using them anyway

     

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  33.  
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    iamtheky (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:34am

    Re: Re: Re: Another nail in PayPal's coffin

    Yeah, I cancelled before the page was no longer accessible.

    Should be a nice battle.

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:37am

    Re: Re:

    Google Pay (better option anyway because their fees are lower).

     

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  35.  
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    blah, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:38am

    Re: Re:

    Google Checkout and Amazon Payments are very similar.

    Furthermore, you can refer to this list for more options: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_on-line_payment_service_providers

     

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  36.  
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    TSO, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:38am

    > raises serious questions about PayPal as a business worth trusting.

    RAISES? Those questions were there pretty much since day one.

    Rule #1: You can't trust anybody. I mean ANYBODY.

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:39am

    Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    I see that the article only has quotes from the Brad Manning support organization. Has anyone thought to ask the evil, despicable, corrupt, vicious, back-stabbing, and unethical Paypal why they did this? (I mean, besides the person/group that wrote the blog article.)

    Has *anyone*? Are you serious? Do you really expect someone here to know what everyone in the world has or has not done? If you don't believe the article, why don't you go ask them yourself?

     

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  38.  
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    Designerfx (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:45am

    Re: Re: Another nail in PayPal's coffin

    It's just one more reason to refuse business with paypal.

    If they're going to cut you because the wind blows in a different direction, how can you trust them?

    Answer: you can't.

     

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  39.  
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    theangryetailer (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:49am

    Paypal has been full of fraud for years...pretty much since eBay acquired them. They are not a safe payment method (relative to others, anyway).

    They also have a long history of closing accounts for no reason whatsoever or at the very best, on a whim.

    This is why most large ecommerce stores do not offer Paypal as a payment method.

     

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  40.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:51am

    I'm surprised people still use Paypal. When they started freezing accounts for Hurricane Katrina relief funds and stuff like that, I figured the internet would realize they have shady business practices.

     

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  41.  
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    Chargone (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:51am

    Re:

    well, yeah, anyone who actually bothered to read their ToS or whatever they called that document knew That.

     

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  42.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:54am

    Re: Re: Re: Another nail in PayPal's coffin

    If I remember correctly, PayPal was one of the sites that was relatively unaffected by Anonymous's DDoS attacks in support of Wikileaks. Unless I have them confused with someone else, the attacks took down their homepage for a few hours, but didn't effect their payment processing systems.

    I wouldn't be surprised if PayPal has taken additional measures since then, like beefing up their pipes, to help protect them from future attacks.

     

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  43.  
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    Mike Shore, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:54am

    Re: Just cancel

    I just cancelled my account as well. Actions speak louder than words.

     

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  44.  
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    Chargone (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:54am

    Re: Re: Isn't this fraud?

    technically their business is selling you paypal credits, if i read what you sign up to by using them properly. their entire ToS is set up so the only thing they're legally obligated to do is record that you bought those credits, and bank the cash. or so it seemed at the time.

     

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  45.  
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    Devonavar, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:54am

    Re:

    "That's the nice thing about being a privately-owned company--Paypal can do as it pleases. Nothing "horrifying" about it. I respect their decision, even though I don't agree with it."

    Banks are privately owned companies. We do *not* allow banks to revoke accounts at any time and keep the money that they hold. Functionally, Paypal is bank. I don't understand why you wouldn't hold them to the same standard.

     

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  46.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:54am

    Re: Isn't this fraud?

    Not for Paypal it isn't. They are not a bank. Read their ToS. They never have to give you any money you have there. They can take your money on a whim.

     

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  47.  
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    velox (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:55am

    Let's not forget that Palantir was founded by a group of very smart guys who used to be part of Paypal. It's rather unlikely that the principals at Palantir and Paypal don't still know each other quite well.

    Palantir has tried to distance themselves from the Wikileaks/HBGary affair and act as if they didn't have anything to do with the direction of the plan, but a reading of their email has revealed otherwise.

    While there is only a circumstantial connection to the issue in this post, nonetheless Palantir continues to be a supplier of very expensive software that allows government intelligence agencies to analyze contacts between individuals.

    The stated objectives of HBGary and Palantir were to isolate the individuals associated with Wikileaks and cut off their support.
    This move by Paypal would seem to be addressing a closely related and parallel objective of further isolating Manning

     

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  48.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:55am

    "Nobody said you have to do anything. Personally, I respect the rights of other people to make choices, even choices I don't agree with. I expect the same in return."

    And I choose not to do any business with paypal. And I choose to urge everyone out there to make the same choice.

     

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  49.  
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    Chargone (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:57am

    Re: Soooo...

    if i remember their ToS right, the only thing they're obligated to do and can't get out of is actually selling you the credits. they reserve the right to not do pretty much every other part, and the only reason they don't try to worm their way out of that bit is that they'd get in legal trouble if they didn't then refund your money. that said i'm not a lawyer and it's been a while since i read the document.

     

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  50.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:03pm

    List of acceptable PayPal uses

    I would be curious to see a short list of objectionable or controversial goods and services that PayPal does allow you to purchase or finance through their system.

    Firearms?
    Pornography?
    Escort services?
    Scientology?
    Astroturfing?
    Bongs?

    One obvious difference is that Manning's opponents are among the most powerful and influential people in the world.

     

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  51.  
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    lrn2postnubs, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:06pm

    Given the Anonymous response to anything Wikileaks/Manning related, it would not surprise me, since Paypal has already climbed in bed with the government, that this in particular would be a Fed sting to elicit yet another Anon response that the Feds can now lay in wait for.

     

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  52.  
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    The Original Anonymous Coward (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:10pm

    Re: Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    Having a bad day?

    ;)

    I really don't expect anyone to do anything. My question was a reasonable one. It has nothing to do with whether I believe the article or not.

    The vast majority of the folks who have posted comments to this article give the impression of not liking Paypal. I was just wondering if anyone knew if Paypal had been asked about this by anyone other than the folks who wrote the original blog article.

    Lighten up Francis...

     

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  53.  
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    Marcus Carab (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:13pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    A private company has every right to make their own decisions - and they can also expect their customers to vocally criticize them when those decisions are as reprehensible as this one.

     

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  54.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:22pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    A private company has every right to make their own decisions...

    A common carrier has no right to refuse lawful carriage. That's been the law for centuries.

    Nor does a common innkeeper have a right to turn away benighted travellers.

     

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  55.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:26pm

    Re:

    That might be the case, but what about a private company that decides not do do business with black people? I assume nobody is gonna say anything about that...

     

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  56.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:29pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    In all seriousness, I've wondered for a long time why financial institutions have fewer regulations in dealing with customers than telephone companies.

     

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  57.  
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    John Boy, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:32pm

    Paypal "worth Trusting" ?

    Come on......since when has a company that can make policies "on the fly" ever been trustworthy? Fired them years ago.

     

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  58.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:33pm

    Re: Re:

    ... what about a private company that decides not do do business with black people?

    Common victuallers have been regulated by the state since ancient times, and throughout the medieval period.

     

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  59.  
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    velox (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:33pm

    Re:

    Hmm. That's a reasonable suspicion.
    ...pure speculation of course, but not unlikely.

     

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  60.  
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    Ben, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:41pm

    The Problem is Systemic

    When you have controlled financial companies built on top of controlled financial systems, there will always be straightforward and relatively simple ways to control those who participate in said systems.

    This larger problem requires a bigger solution:
    http://www.bitcoin.org
    http://www.bitcoinme.com

     

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  61.  
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    el_segfaulto (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:47pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Another nail in PayPal's coffin

    It seems to be like we've been seeing different faces of Anonymous. The attacks against PayPal et al. a few months ago were simple DDOS attacks which could have been performed by script kiddies. The attack against HBGary was surgical and highly efficient. If PayPal evokes the ire of the latter members of Anonymous, they may have something to worry about even with beefier defenses.

     

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  62.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:49pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    ... why financial institutions have fewer regulations in dealing with customers than telephone companies. [?]

    The banks own Capitol Hill.

    “The banks -- hard to believe in a time when we're facing a banking crisis that many of the banks created -- are still the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill. And they frankly own the place.”  ——Senator Dick Durbin

    The banks own the Senate and the House of Representatives.

     

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  63.  
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    pixelpusher220 (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 12:50pm

    Re: Re: Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    "The Support Network repeatedly requested and was refused formal documentation from PayPal describing their policies in this matter. "
    .
    Sounds pretty much like PayPal told them to just go away, without documenting *why*.
    .
    "They said they would not unrestrict our account unless we authorized PayPal to withdraw funds from our organization’s checking account by default."
    .
    Seriously? We won't do business with you unless you let us arbitrarily access your bank account. Sounds vaguely close to extortion to me.

     

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  64.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 1:02pm

    Re: Re: Just cancel

    I've also canceled my account and included a Bradley Manning related comment that will never be read, I'm sure.

     

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  65.  
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    Gwiz (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 1:11pm

    Re: Just cancel

    Well, I would cancel my account if I could - unfortunately I no longer remember the login and password anymore and it's attached to an email I no longer have.

    The last time I used PayPal was around 2000 or so when I bought my kid some stupid wing things for his Furcadia character on his birthday - lol.

     

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  66.  
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    Adam Bell, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 1:29pm

    Re: Just closed my PayPal acct.

    Just closed mine as well (after 10 minutes to discover how)

    Although I hadn't (and didn't intend to) contribute to Bradley Manning's defense fund, this marks the second time that PayPal has cancelled an account (the other being WikiLeaks) for purely political reasons. I'm not a strong supporter of either of those causes, but believe strongly that WikiLeaks and the Manning defense fund both have the right to collect money.

    Would you continue to use a bank that refused to honor checks made out to folks they didn't approve of? PayPal is simply not reliable -- they censor accounts. I could understand if either of those people (Assange or Manning) had been found guilty of anything, but they have not.

     

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  67.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 1:45pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Another nail in PayPal's coffin

    Remember that the only form of organization Anonymous exhibits is that many of them frequent the same locations, like their IRC chat rooms. Other than that, there is very little connecting the people participating in the LOIC DDoS attacks, and the small group of highly-skilled individuals involved in the HBGary Federal debacle. From reading the chat logs previously linked to by Techdirt, I got the impression that only four or five individuals were involved in HBGary Federal (they may have even stated this implicitly).

    An interesting point of the DDoS attacks was that the vast majority of participants were volunteers who had downloaded the Low-Orbit Ion Cannon client, then allowed their rigs to be directed by whoever was running the attacks up top. There were some indications that many of the volunteers did not have any prior relationship with Anonymous, but were inspired to join the DDoS efforts due to the common goal of punishing the companies that had severed ties with Wikileaks. I'm guessing that this group of people account for most of those arrested recently, as they were unable to take basic steps to mask their identities.

    I would be surprised if the same people were involved. The methodology and level of skill shown in the HBGary Federal hack was completely different, as you pointed out. Personally, had I been involved in the DDoS attacks (I don't have anything to do with Anonymous) I would be laying low. The last thing in the world I would want to do is commit another high-profile hack.

     

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

  68.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 1:48pm

    Re: Re: Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    I was just wondering if anyone knew if Paypal had been asked about this by anyone other than the folks who wrote the original blog article.

    Perhaps that's what you should have asked, then. No need insult other people because your writing skills are not up to par.

     

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

  69.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 1:53pm

    Re:

    That's the nice thing about being a privately-owned company--Paypal can do as it pleases.

    No, even privately-owned companies have to obey the law.

    (And PayPal is not privately held, either. They are a subsidiary of Ebay Inc., a publicly owned and traded company).

     

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

  70.  
    icon
    The Original Anonymous Coward (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 2:20pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    But these quotes are from just one side of the dispute. I'm not saying that Paypal wasn't quoted accurately, but there are too many cases of sound bites and interview snippets not telling the whole story.

    I'd just like to hear Paypal's version. If they give Mike the same treatment that they gave the Brad Manning support organization, then they've proved the point that they are evil, despicable, corrupt, vicious, back-stabbing, and unethical.

     

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

  71.  
    identicon
    Kenny, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 2:41pm

    Re:

    It also makes it far easier for them to cave into pressure from the US government as well then. Let's not kid ourselves who the real puppet master is here!

     

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

  72.  
    identicon
    JMT, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 2:43pm

    Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    Here's Paypal's explanation:

    http://techcrunch.com/2011/02/24/paypal-on-cutting-off-courage-to-resist-this-has-no thing-to-do-with-wikileaks/

    So it seems it it had nothing to do with Wikileaks; Courage To Resist just didn't follow the correct procedures for a non-profit.

    What surprises me is that PayPal can't see how bad this looks to most people. Not that CTR deserve special treatment, but it seems to me that it would be in PayPals's interest to help them sort the problem quickly and privately instead of attracting bad press, deserved or not.

     

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

  73.  
    icon
    Christopher (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 2:46pm

    Re:

    Which is why companies HAVE to be told by a law being passed that unless someone is doing something illegal WITH THE ACCOUNT IN QUESTION, they have to allow the people to collect money on their website.

    If some people want to bash them for that? Point at that law and say "Hey, we have no choice, to go to hell!"

    This is just another attempt at First Amendment suppression of free speech, and I do not support that.

    To the people who are going to say "THE FIRST AMENDMENT DOESN'T APPLY TO PRIVATE COMPANIES!"...... GUESS A-FUCKING-GAIN!"
    Numerous court decisions in state and federal courts have said that you do NOT give up your right to free speech when you are using a private companies services.

    Things like Newsvine's 'harmful to minors' policy would be thrown out if someone had the gumption to take them to court.

     

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

  74.  
    identicon
    HrilL, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 2:53pm

    Re: Re: Just closed my PayPal acct.

    I canceled mine too. Told them why but it won't likely be read nor cared about. I'd also like to note they paypal stole $1.50 from me because it was lower than the amount they charge to write a check. I'll never use paypal again and I think everyone should boycott them as well.

     

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

  75.  
    icon
    vivaelamor (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 3:04pm

    Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    "I see that the article only has quotes from the Brad Manning support organization. Has anyone thought to ask the evil, despicable, corrupt, vicious, back-stabbing, and unethical Paypal why they did this? (I mean, besides the person/group that wrote the blog article.)"

    Are they incapable of issuing a press release? I mean, if they have a genuine good reason and a competent PR department then that would seem like the sensible thing to do.

     

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

  76.  
    icon
    vivaelamor (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 3:15pm

    Re: Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    "What surprises me is that PayPal can't see how bad this looks to most people. Not that CTR deserve special treatment, but it seems to me that it would be in PayPals's interest to help them sort the problem quickly and privately instead of attracting bad press, deserved or not."

    I'm not sure how they could foresee the bad press here, if the organisation really did lie. Regardless, PayPal's policies tend to be so complicated that sorting problems is unlikely to be quick.

     

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

  77.  
    icon
    The eejit (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 3:30pm

    Re: Re: Re: Just cancel

    I went one further and actively accused them of bowing to external pressures. :D

     

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

  78.  
    icon
    Jay (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 4:01pm

    Re:

    Don't forget at&t...

     

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

  79.  
    identicon
    PRMan, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 5:48pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    Make a new account, tie Paypal to it. Take all your funds back. Close PayPal account. Close bank account.

     

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

  80.  
    identicon
    Rekrul, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 6:24pm

    This is somewhat horrifying, frankly, and raises serious questions about PayPal as a business worth trusting.

    I would have thought that the dozens of horror stories about PayPal freezing accounts at the drop of a hat, would have already answered any such questions.

     

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

  81.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 6:25pm

    If money is speech private enterprise conducting business in the public sphere should not be able to impose restrictions outside of those directly imposed by law.

     

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

  82.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 7:41pm

    A interesting update http://www.couragetoresist.org/x/content/view/893/1/ paypal has restored their account. But paypal does not say why it restored their account.

     

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

  83.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 24th, 2011 @ 7:53pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    I'd just like to hear Paypal's version.

    Have you asked them? If not, then why not? If you *really* want to hear their version, that's what you could have done. Of course, if what you *really* want to just cast aspersions on the article then you wouldn't want to do that.

     

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

  84.  
    icon
    slander (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 8:59pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    Well, if you really, truly want to hear PayPal's version of things, then do this: contact them yourself, and report back with their reply. Simple.

    As for me, having become familiar with PayPal's ways, both from reports on the Internet, along with friends who have (much to their dismay) been forced to deal with their treachery, I'd long ago been convinced that they are dirty.

     

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

  85.  
    icon
    Chargone (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 9:33pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    also owned by e-bay, according to the wiki.

     

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

  86.  
    icon
    Jay (profile), Feb 24th, 2011 @ 11:59pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Anybody ask Paypal about this?

    Not that simple.

    There's laws that regulate large transfers like that, and the Patriot Act sure doesn't help.

     

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

  87.  
    identicon
    Sam Mirshafie, Feb 25th, 2011 @ 4:07am

    I can't believe they used PayPal

    This is not the first, but hopefully the last time I read a story like this. I can't for the life of me understand how people setting up donations for political prisoners and the like decide on using PayPal, given its long-standing history of freezing funds based on bugger all. And that makes it a bit hard to feel sorry for the people who lost their money this way.

    Jot this down. You may need it later:
    PayPal = Evil

     

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

  88.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 25th, 2011 @ 5:11am

    Re: I can't believe they used PayPal

    I can't for the life of me understand how people setting up donations for political prisoners and the like decide on using PayPal...

    They use PayPal because it, unfortunately, dominates that market. The US gov't has helped PayPal reach that position, so PayPal is sure to return the favor whenever it can.

     

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

  89.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 25th, 2011 @ 6:21am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Another nail in PayPal's coffin

    Or not.

     

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

  90.  
    icon
    mirshafie (profile), Feb 25th, 2011 @ 6:26am

    Re:

    I think they're waiting for his funds to accumulate a bit before they decide to freeze them.

    Time will tell.

     

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

  91.  
    icon
    Chris Rhodes (profile), Feb 25th, 2011 @ 8:01am

    Re: Re:

    "We have to pass a law forcing companies to do business with people they don't want to do business with, for FREEEEDOOOMMM."

     

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

  92.  
    icon
    Jay (profile), Feb 25th, 2011 @ 8:28am

    Symptom vs source

    People, closing down your accounts are great but you should look at the source of the problem:

    Patriot Act Title III

    The Anti money laundering Act is what would really be cited in preventing funds to go to Manning in any way shape or form. If someone commits an act of terrorism (read: if they're accused of a crime without being convicted) then the penalties can be pretty severe

    I wouldn't be too surprised if this was the specific statute since it seems Paypal allows people to transfer money internationally.

     

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

  93.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 25th, 2011 @ 9:18am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "We have to pass a law forcing companies to do business with people they don't want to do business with, for FREEEEDOOOMMM."

    Next thing you know, they'll be telling me I can't have a whites-only lunch counter. There goes the neighborhood!

     

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

  94.  
    icon
    Chris Rhodes (profile), Feb 25th, 2011 @ 2:27pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I'd support your right to have a whites-only lunch counter.

    But I'd also picket your restaurant with the rest of the modern human race until you went out of business (which wouldn't take long, I assure you).

    No guns needed. Just freedom of association and contract. It's a beautiful thing.

     

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

  95.  
    identicon
    Jackie, Mar 7th, 2011 @ 1:17pm

    Paypal is a bank

    Paypal may close an account but they can't lock up the funds. It's a bank. And very liable for what it does.

    I use Paypal to pay for Ebay goods. But I'll go light for awhile and I'll stop making those dollar contributions to charity everytime I pay for something.

     

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

  96.  
    icon
    bitco (profile), Aug 18th, 2013 @ 12:24am

    Re: Re: Re: Another nail in PayPal's coffin

    Yeah, and denial of payment if you do something "illegal " according to their terms. This is ethical to seize your money if you process bitcoins?

     

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


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