by Mike Masnick
Tue, Jan 29th 2013 9:35am
We recently wrote about a series of cases where young computer hackers were either charged or threatened with criminal charges for doing things that don't seem particularly criminal at all. The NY Times now has a blog post on more or less the same subject, but focusing on the "fuzzy and shifting line between hacker and criminal." While it's good that more attention is getting paid to these kinds of questionable cases, I wonder if that framing is really accurate. I don't think there's a "line" -- fuzzy, shifting or not -- between "hacker" and "criminal." The two things are different. Can you be a criminal hacker? Sure. But the problem is that many non-techie folks seem to assume that any kind of hacking must be criminal. And that's the problem. It's not that some imaginary line is moving around, but that some people don't seem to understand that hacking itself is not criminal, and that there are plenty of good reasons to hack -- including to expose security holes.
If you liked this post, you may also be interested in...
- How Section 1201 Of The Copyright Statute Threatens Innovation
- Some Now Suggesting Cardinals Hack May Have Violated The Economic Espionage Act
- Court Adds Much-Needed Element Of Malice To Nova Scotia's Terrible Cyberbullying Law
- Court Tells AZ Legislator To Fix His Unconstitutional Revenge Porn Bill; He Immediately Makes It Much Worse
- Korea Threatens To Put Uber's CEO In Prison For Offering An 'Illegal' Taxi Service