EFF, ACLU Ask Court To Strike Down Kentucky's Domain Name Seizure

from the good-for-them dept

You may recall that a judge recently allowed Kentucky's governor to seize a bunch of domain names that were related to gambling -- even if neither the owners nor the servers were based in Kentucky -- setting a terrible precedent. That's why it's good to see the EFF, the ACLU and the Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT) team up yet again to ask an appeals court to overturn this decision. Hopefully the appeals court recognizes how truly awful the original decision was, and notes how it seems to violate multiple clauses of the Constitution.


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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 13th, 2008 @ 4:47pm

    How can the governor seize the domain names? If the registrar is not in Kentucky, then he has no jurisdiction, and they would be well within their rights to ignore him, right?

     

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      Mike (profile), Nov 13th, 2008 @ 5:26pm

      Re:

      How can the governor seize the domain names? If the registrar is not in Kentucky, then he has no jurisdiction, and they would be well within their rights to ignore him, right?

      The governor's office has been going to the *registrars* and showing them the judge's order, and having the registrars transfer the domains.

      And yes, you would think that they have no jurisdiction -- and that's a big part of the lawsuit -- but the original judge said that if the sites refuse to put in special filters to block Kentucky internet viewers from accessing the site, then Kentucky can seize the domains.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 13th, 2008 @ 5:26pm

      Re:

      Well, I'm not really sure about the legality of it...but the way a governor could seize the domain names is simply demand ISPs to stop serving them and if they fail to comply slap them with criminal charges...but i'm not sure...anyone else?

       

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        eleete, Nov 13th, 2008 @ 5:40pm

        Re: Re:

        I think eventually we will see some form of internet police. Which is so sad, because the openness of the internet has been it's main strength, creating it's Unprecedented Growth.

        However, a judge that says a mayor is within his rights to 'commandeer' these (non-US/Kentucky)is clearly deluded. This will be overturned I'm quite sure. The backlash would not be by American people, it would be global business. It may be illegal to do certain things in Kentucky. Kentucky, however, cannot rule the rest of the planet confiscating domains. For those who say IP infringement is theft? THIS is THEFT.

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 13th, 2008 @ 5:57pm

    "but the original judge said that if the sites refuse to put in special filters to block Kentucky internet viewers from accessing the site, then Kentucky can seize the domains."

    He might have said that, but why do the listen? That's what I don't understand. If a judge said "And so I say, I am hereby king of the planet", would we all say "well, alright then.."?

     

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    ehrichweiss, Nov 13th, 2008 @ 5:58pm

    this isn't the first...

    I've lived in Kentucky long enough to know that they think they own everything and that they don't have to listen to anyone who makes less than a few million $$$ a year. So you can bet that someone who owns a casino has put a few dollars in a judge's pocket... Here in KY isn't not justice, it's "just us".

     

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    JMG, Nov 14th, 2008 @ 12:09pm

    My Old Kentucky Home

    People are finally starting to learn just how much power the 4 million of us living in The Bluegrass State possess. Of course, most people living in the two population centers (Louisville and Northern Kentucky), like myself, don't really associate ourselves with the rest of the state.

    Gambling was a hot issue the last gubernatroial election. Beshear included allowing the people of the Commonwealth to vote on expanded gambling as part of his platform. Of course, we haven't had that vote yet because our representation in Frankfort is always thinking of the children.

    Kentucky is strapped for cash and Governor Beshear will be pushing for the gambling as a way to increase revenue in Kentucky. He is just trying to protect his interests with the horse racing industry. If/when Kentucky get expanded gambling, it will be limited to being at the horse tracks themselves, or having the casinos run by the horse racing industry. Odin forbid Churchill Downs will have to compete with companies from Las Vegas, Atlantic City, or other companies that actually have experience running a casino. Churchill Downs couldn't even get their website prepared for the influx of traffic for Derby betting this year.

    Kentucky has a bipolar disorder when it comes to gambling. On- and off-track horse race betting -- good. Any other form of legalized gambling leads to organized crime, prostitution, broken homes and families, and other evils that harm the children.

     

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