Canada Says It's Legal To Sell Instructions On How To Do Illegal Things

from the freedom-of-speech dept

Many years ago, in the time before the web, I used to get the famous Loompanics Unlimited catalog (which apparently now exists online). It was chock full of amusing and interesting books -- many of which were all about how to do various illegal things. These were mostly pamphlets, mixed in with other bizarre and fun books. I was more interested in the other books (not about how to do illegal stuff), but the illegal books always looked more harmless than anything else. They were there more for the shock and thrill of the titles more than any practical information. In the US, selling such books is perfectly legal -- following through on their instructions, of course, is not. However, in Canada this wasn't so clear. So, a guy got arrested for selling a (probably useless) email package giving people instructions on "breaking into houses, making bombs, and creating false credit card numbers." The Canadian Supreme Court, however, has realized that, just as in the US, there's nothing particularly illegal about selling such information. It's just acting on it. Of course, the court did order a new trial as it appears that the guy in question (whoops) may have been also creating fake credit card numbers himself, potentially breaking the law.

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  1. identicon
    dorpus, 2 Aug 2005 @ 3:31pm

    Would it be legal to

    say that there is a new extremely popular PC game for growing your own "bottled angels"? Looks like it might not be legal in North America. Sold through Amazon, the world's largest distributor of this stuff.

    http://www.starchild.co.jp/kawara/030311.html

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

  2. identicon
    Tim, 2 Aug 2005 @ 4:56pm

    Contrast...

    Contrast Canada's attitude with the UK getting anti-"acts preparatory to terrorism legislation.

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

  3. identicon
    Tom, 2 Aug 2005 @ 7:00pm

    Hey Hey

    Canada is my favorite country, they behave like angels... good work canada

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

  4. identicon
    Sofa King Stoned, 3 Aug 2005 @ 9:03am

    Loompanics and Paladin Press

    Funny you should mention Loompanics. They have a piece on their sitre about a how-to book that was outlawed in the US.

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


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