White House Petition Concerning Legality Of Unlocking Phones Passes The Magic 100,000 Mark

from the and-now-we-wait dept

Earlier this month, we wrote about a White House Petition, asking to make unlocking mobile phones legal again, since it had been made infringing again, thanks to the Librarian of Congress omitting it from the list of DMCA exceptions last year. As we noted, the White House had recently bumped up the number of signatures needed for it to respond from 25,000 to 100,000, making it difficult to get over that barrier.

However, overnight, that petition finally got over the hurdle, hitting 100,000 signatures. I believe this may be the first petition to hit that threshold under the "new" system. Of course, getting it to that point is merely step one. The real issue is in how the White House will respond, and they have an incredibly easy out: they just point out that the exemption process happens on a schedule, and that those who are concerned about this issue should file to have the Librarian of Congress reconsider in three years...


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  1.  
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    Akari Mizunashi (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 9:20am

    No, the real issue isn't whether the White House will respond.

    The real issue will be what will the new petition cap be.

     

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

  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:02am

    Steve's Job

    White House: Um, we could, um, make it legal, but, um, have you stopped to consider the lost jobs? In these tuff economic times, um, we need to focus on what really matters, um, jobs. We understand folks may be concerned about what they can or can't do with their [property?] but, um, we don't think it is as important as, um, jobs, at least right now.

     

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

  3.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:16am

    How many of these petitions actually hold weight vs how many get Death Star responses? (nothing against that response)

    In other words should I be holding my breath on a decent response from the White House?

     

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

  4.  
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    gorehound (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:18am

    I have a ZERO Opinion of Today's Government.
    Expect the opposite will happen as in nothing will happen but the Cap will get raised again to 250k or something.

    Or they will send a meaningless form letter response.
    F$ck Off US Government ! you are already bought and paid for before you even run for Office.

     

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  5. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
    identicon
    out_of_the_blue, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:29am

    And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    However, overnight, that petition finally got over the hurdle, hitting 100,000 signatures. I believe this may be the first petition to hit that threshold under the "new" system. Of course, getting it to that point is merely step one.

    You admittedly can't make it over the 2nd step, college boy. Nothing but question marks that you expect someone else to fill in for you.




    Take a loopy tour of Techdirt.com! You always end up at same place!
    http://techdirt.com/
    Don't miss Mike's other site, Step2, where his secret formula for success is revealed as... wait for it... Step 2: ??????

     

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

  6.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:33am

    The White House will say the Librarian of Congress did his job and it's up to Congress to change the laws.

    What else would you expect?

     

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

  7.  
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    Rikuo (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:33am

    Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    You're the loopy one, actually expecting a secret formula for success that is 100% guaranteed to work. Not once has Mike ever said that his business tips are infallible. For that sort of language, ask the Pope.

     

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

  8.  
    identicon
    RD, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:35am

    Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    Dear OutOfTheAverageJoeBobsAsscrack,

    Kindly fuck off if all you are going to do is come on here to take a shot at Mike and the site.

    Sincerely,

    The Internet

     

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

  9.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:37am

    Re: Steve's Job

    White House: You have to think about the children of the employees of cell carriers don't get paid their bonuses because new customers switching from an old carrier choose not to purchase a new phone and instead use the perfectly functional one they already have. These children are really the issue here. Also when cell carriers don't get paid for new phones, they then can't afford to invest in updated security measures that make them vulnerable to cyber attack. And lastly... piracy is somehow related here. We can't really explain how but trust us it is and that is bad (which we also can't explain how so again just trust us) so you can see where we are just looking out for your best interest here. Thank you for your concern, but we know what we are doing here, and we've got this one. Now you can all go back to looking at cat videos and just let us do our thing.

     

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

  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:47am

    White House response:

    Please bend over citizen.

     

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

  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:54am

    Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    Mildly entertaining. 2.5/10.

     

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

  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:54am

    IOW, we have an elected government that, instead of responding to the people, merely refers blame and responsibility onto unelected governing bodies.

     

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

  13.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 11:57am

    Re:

    I actually like the higher petition threshold because now more trivial issues can better be ignored and more important issues, like this, can be highlighted. Having a million issues pass the 25,000 threshold diminishes the impact of this petition passing the 100,000 signature threshold since the threshold was low and many petitions are to be considered and responded to. Too much clutter. Now, with a higher threshold, this and other more important petitions stand out more.

     

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

  14.  
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    weneedhelp (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:01pm

    Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    "college boy" - Oh you are one of THOSE.


    YeeeeeeHawwwwwww!!!!!!

     

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

  15.  
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    Coogan (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:04pm

    Only terrorists use unlocked cell phones. If you want to unlock your cell phone, you must also want to be a terrorist.

    Terrorist.






    yes, it's sarcasm!

     

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

  16.  
    identicon
    Rich, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:06pm

    Re: Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    Yeah, I always found it interesting that someone thinks calling you a "college boy" is some sort of insult.

     

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

  17.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:11pm

    Re: Steve's Job

    White House to Public: F**K OFF, YOU F**KING F**KERS WHO F**KING THINK F**KING DEMOCRACY WORKS!!! JUST F**K OFF AND F**KING DIE ALREADY!!!

    Oh, and now the petition cap is 500m. Tanks for playing!

     

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

  18.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:22pm

    Eh? Whassat?

    'Ello? 'Ello? Can you hear me now? 'Ello... ?

     

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

  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:22pm

    Re:

    100,000 terrorists signed the petition. Heck, lets just make it easy. Everyone is a terrorist. We need to pass more laws.

     

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

  20.  
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    Ben (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:25pm

    Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    Step 3: Profit!

     

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

  21.  
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    fogbugzd (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:27pm

    Re:

    Actually, the Death Star petition got a better response than most of the petitions have gotten.

    I think the responses are mostly written by junior staffers who use the petitions as an opportunity to practice the vital political skill of responding to a question without actually saying or doing anything meaningful.

     

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

  22.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:29pm

    Re: Re: Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    Shut up, you dirty intellectual.

     

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

  23.  
    identicon
    Rich, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:34pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    "Dirty intellectual" Oh yeah, that's me!

     

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

  24.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:43pm

    Re:

    This is a trend we see all over the world. In Denmark, a new law going into effect later this year will close for FOIA requests to internal communication in and between ministries, an unelected employee is taking the fall for a case where the 2 largest parties likely both have committed crimes, elections are getting digitized with civil experts screaming no or wait, there has been created a bare minimum of oversight over our three letter secrecy soups while they get every kind of DPI surveillance data delivered from ISPs and banks/government-citizen interactions and a register of lobbyists has been dropped for the nth time the last 10 years!

    Transparency is not increasing, but decreasing at the moment and the politicians are increasing the insulation between their world and the citizens. It is a disgrace, but it is broadly agreed on among politicians and therefore impossible to stop!

     

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

  25.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:47pm

    Re: Re:

    We need to reset our entire set of laws and start over with just the constitution and it's amendments.

     

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

  26.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:48pm

    I'm more annoyed....

    That people ignored me when I was shouting that this was happening. Blown off. Called 'tin foil hatty'.

    I feel like Will Smith in Men in Black II: "Yo! People! We got a BUG in the ELECTRICAL SYSTEM!"

    [shit ass stuff deployed]

    "Yeah, now y'all runnin'! Now y'all- no, no, no, come on, sit down, sit down! It's only a 600 foot worm!"

     

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

  27.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:49pm

    Re: Re:

    with 100.000 terrorists, there may be something called acceptable losses and the three-letter soups and military can take actions as they see fit.

     

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

  28.  
    identicon
    [citation needed or GTFO], Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:56pm

    The real issue is in how the White House will respond, and they have an incredibly easy out: they just point out that the exemption process happens on a schedule, and that those who are concerned about this issue should file to have the Librarian of Congress reconsider in three years...

    Or you know, they could just ignore it...

     

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

  29.  
    identicon
    [citation needed or GTFO], Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:56pm

    The real issue is in how the White House will respond, and they have an incredibly easy out: they just point out that the exemption process happens on a schedule, and that those who are concerned about this issue should file to have the Librarian of Congress reconsider in three years...

    Or you know, they could just ignore it...

     

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

  30.  
    identicon
    [citation needed or GTFO], Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:57pm

    Re:

    I need to buy a new mouse that stops double-clicking...

     

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

  31.  
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    Jeff (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 12:57pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    I'm really dirty... filthy in fact...

     

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

  32.  
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    Rikuo (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 1:01pm

    Re: Re: Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    I wish I were a college boy...:(

     

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

  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 1:04pm

    Even though it has enough signatures to be considered in the White House, I don't think it stands a snowball's chance to pass. It was omitted from the DCMA list more than likely for a reason. And that reason, well, we can only speculate..but it's probably got something to do with the Telecom Industry putting money in the pockets of those we've elected to represent us. Speculation..but it makes sense.

    Over 100,000 signatures is impressive, yes...but there's millions & millions & millions of people in the US, compared to these 100,000 or so signatures. That's a HUGE difference to take into consideration.

     

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

  34.  
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    Jason Still (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 1:17pm

    Re:


    ... something to do with the Telecom Industry putting money in the pockets of those we've elected to represent us.

    I think you misspelled repress.

     

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

  35.  
    identicon
    Rich, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 1:31pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    If you want to, do it! It's not always easy, but it is doable. I was a poorboy. I worked in a restaurant for 10 yrs. to get a 4 yr. degree. I worked full time, and drove an hour to college (also full time). My daughter was born during my first semester. Tough times, but at least I have the money now to pay for her college, so she doesn't have to go through what I did.

     

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

  36.  
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    R.H. (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 1:32pm

    Re: Re:

    I agree with the previous cap being too low but 100,000 seems too high to me. I think 50,000 or 75,000 would be a more fair number. However, I am lacking one piece of information. Did the amount of time allowed to reach the cap go up? If not then there may be another issue with this methodology.

     

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

  37.  
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    Ben (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 1:34pm

    Wrong emphasis

    Rather than petitioning the WH to 'allow' us to unlock phones, I'd much rather petition for competency in the Librarian of Congress. As it is, this exemptions process is founded on a woefully poor understanding of technology (development and use) so I'd much rather challenge the LoC/WH to explain why this process is legitimate.

     

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

  38.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 1:42pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    I actually wouldn't mind seeing the threshold going up a bit. If the threshold is 200,000 and a petition to reduce copy protection lengths goes through with far more than 200,000 (and that's something that far more than 200,000 people should easily sign to) fairly quickly (there should be a reasonable period of time, of course, due to server limitations on the amount of petitions that can be taken at once) and it is one of the very few petitions that goes through, having a higher threshold with fewer petitions to clutter up our attention span sends a much stronger message to the government. WE WANT THIS DONE!!!! and a whole lot of people are paying attention and this is one of the few things we are paying attention to. It makes it easier for the public to show and highlight its consensus and have it stand out.

     

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

  39.  
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    R.H. (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 1:47pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    I agree with this in principle but I shudder to think about what certain lobbies would try to do if the laws of the United States were being rewritten from scratch.

     

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

  40.  
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    R.H. (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 1:52pm

    The Requirements and Limitations of Democracy

    It is fortunate that so many people have decided to take action and actually involve themselves in the running of their government. However, this is only a beginning. We as a people need to continue being involved in our government or we will begin to discover the issues with democracy in action just like the Soviets discovered the inherent corruption that comes with Communism once you move from plans on paper to reality.

    Democracy, even in the form of a republic requires an informed and motivated citizenry to keep it running properly. The problem in reality is that too large a portion of the American citizenry is apathetic or simply uninformed. I'm not sure how we can keep the entire adult population, or at least a large enough percentage to matter, informed and motivated enough to actually care what happens in our government. It pains me when I think about it since I can't come up with a solution that is actually plausible.

    Now before I get flamed, I am not calling all those who disagree with me uninformed but, I must imagine that if we were actually more informed then maybe our elected and appointed officials wouldn't be able to do things like this so easily.

     

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

  41.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 2:23pm

    Re: Re:

    So you're telling me that 100 million signatures were gathered to point out that our society thinks a law is flawed and all those 100 million signatures do is help further some junior staffer's career?


    Power to the people!

     

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

  42.  
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    Wally (profile), Feb 21st, 2013 @ 5:48pm

    Re: And we all know what Mike's Step 2 is! (New here? See below.)

    Ignore OOTB...he posed as one Mr. Applegate in an earlier article.

     

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

  43.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Feb 21st, 2013 @ 9:00pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    50,000 is too little, and 75,000 is too high. The cap should be 62500.

     

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

  44.  
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    Hephaestus (profile), Feb 22nd, 2013 @ 9:20am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    65,536 ;)

     

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

  45.  
    icon
    Hephaestus (profile), Feb 22nd, 2013 @ 9:21am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Geek humor ...

     

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


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