Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick

You May Soon Go To Jail For Sending A Single Legal File

from the brilliant dept

Back in March we discussed a positively moronic bill being proposed in California that would require anyone passing on an electronic version of any commercial audio-visual file to include their real name and email address. If you don't - you can face a year in jail and a $2,500 fine. Note that this law doesn't make a distinction for fair use, or pay attention to whether or not you actually have the right to pass on or share that file. There are so many problems with this law, it's hard to figure out where to start. It's basically the "incriminate yourself" law. Next thing you know, they'll pass a law saying that if you intend to rob a store, you'll be required to leave a card with your name and address. Basically, anyone who's doing something illegally will ignore the law - while anyone who is doing something legally will be bothered by needing to do this while also giving up their privacy for no good reason. In fact, it's especially problematic for children - who shouldn't be giving out their names and addresses to anyone, but who may have perfectly legitimate reasons to pass on an audio-visual file. There are probably fifty more such problems with this law which, of course, is why the California Senate approved it today. It is beyond moronic, and it may soon be law.

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  • identicon
    AMetamorphosis, 20 May 2004 @ 6:52am

    Occupational privilege tax = PA

    This reminds me of a story I read awhile ago on the net about a city ( not sure which one ) that requires beggars to get panhandle licenses.

    Totally absurd.

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

  • identicon
    NOBODY, 20 May 2004 @ 8:30am

    No Subject Given

    You can already go to jail if you send a single file. Why do they keep making more stupid laws when the ones we have are more than adequate?

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

  • identicon
    Sofa King Stoned, 20 May 2004 @ 8:46am

    Marijuana Tax Stamps

    Reminds me of laws in the early '90s that required you to have a tax stamp for every X ounce of pot. Here. If you didn't have the stamps when you got caught you had heavy fines or more years on your sentence. I have no idea if these laws are still in effect.
    Some people actually bought the stamps. Some philatelists collect them.

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

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