More Confusion On The Criminality Of Writing Software

from the if-they-don't-like-you,-you're-in-trouble dept

In August we wrote about the odd story of a guy who created a keylogging software being indicted, but the news reports were unclear what he was indicted for. They simply seemed to assume that writing a keylogger program was illegal -- but there are legitimate keylogger programs out there, and various legal precedents suggesting that the creator of the software shouldn't be held liable for how people use it. This has started to change ever-so-slightly with the Supreme Court's decision in Grokster that set up an "inducement" standard -- but the timing would hardly make sense for using that standard. Mark Rasch apparently was wondering the same thing and has dug a little deeper into what was so illegal about creating this software, and basically found that there's almost no consistency at all in how the government views this type of situation. Basically, if they don't like what you're doing, they find a way to twist the laws to favor their position. However, in other situations (such as their own investigations and with political allies, such as gunmakers), their reasoning changes completely. Who needs consistency when there's politics?

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  1. identicon
    jszpila, 3 Oct 2005 @ 2:34pm

    No Subject Given

    it was only just recently that the firearms industry was granted amnesty from being sued for how stupid people abused their products, if i'm correct.

    but anyway, locking someone up for writing a key logger is a stupid idea; flat out, people/companies shouldn't be held responsible for how people use/abuse their products. There are simply too many variales to take into account and would require some monolithich big-brother like beuracracy to monitor proplery. You can't sue Ford if someone driving one of their trucks hits you - and last time I check, keyloggers weren't fatal. Annoying, but not fatal.

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