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Old 25-05-12, 16:10   #1
 
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Important New US "Internet Protection Act" Bans Anonymous Comments Online

New York Proposes Banning Anonymous Online Comments

By Nathan Tsui 24 May 2012

A bill proposed in both chambers of the New York State Legislature aims to target cyber-bullying by banning anonymous comments on websites, blogs, forums and social networks.

A New York bill, proposed Monday in both chambers of the New York State Legislature, would combat cyber-bullying by effectively banning comments from anonymous users on New York-based websites, blogs, forums, social networks, and pretty much any other form of online communication, reports Wired.

Specifically, the Internet Protection Act's goal would be "protecting a person's right to know who is behind an anonymous internet posting." If the bill (A.8688/S.6779) were to become law, website administrators would be obligated to "remove any comments posted on his or her website by an anonymous poster unless such anonymous poster agrees to attach his or her name to the post." All website administrators would also be required to provide a phone number or email address to receive such removal requests.

However, the measure seems unlikely to become law. No votes have yet been taken on the bill, and an attorney speaking to Wired seemed skeptical of its passage. "This statute would essentially destroy the ability to speak anonymously online on sites in New York," said Kevin Bankston, a staff attorney with the Center for Democracy and Technology. Bankston equated the bill to a "heckler's veto to anybody who disagrees with or doesn't like what an anonymous poster said."

The legislation is sponsored by Assemblyman Dean Murray and Senator Thomas O'Mara, both Republicans from New York. The bill intends to give power back to the cyber-bullied, because it "will offer them the opportunity to either confront the person making these comments by having that person identified, or have the comment removed all together in the case where this comment is false or slanderous," Murray said.

"The internet has been a great innovation for our time, it's brought forth a lot of advantages, but with that, there are abuses that come with it," O'Mara said. "This will help lend some accountability to the internet age."
END

Incredible! Dictatorship in the US & their desire to control the Internet has finally started.
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Old 25-05-12, 16:51   #2
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Default Re: New US "Internet Protection Act" Bans Anonymous Comments Online

Some political figure or donator to a political figure has gotten their feelings hurt. Chances are just as good that the statement taken in offense is accurate.

Lately all sorts of stuff is being tried to identify anonymous commentators so pressure can be applied to either have them self-edit or to take them to court in what is called a SLAPP (Strategic lawsuit against public participation) suit. Many states now have laws to prevent these SLAPP suits yet some don't.

The idea is damage control. One such attempt involved a doctors' evaluation by a patient online. The patient was not identified by name but rather by nick, much the same as what is done here. You can't take a nick to court as it doesn't truly identify the individual that must be served the summons to court. So the lawyer representing the doctor attempts to get a discovery order to find out from the ISP who is writing bad evaluations about the doctor. The evaluations appear truthful if damaging to the doctors professional reputation. There is no law to prevent someone from accurately stating the facts, even if damaging. As long as they are not fabricating the events and tell it exactly as it happened, they can not be penalized. Slander will not hold up in court if it is proven to be the absolute facts.

But often the threat of court and the cost that involves can be the necessary deterrent. Face it, getting threatening letters from some unknown lawyer about taking you to court is unsettling to say the least. It's to the point that only the rich can afford justice. Court time, lawyers, defense preparation, all cost big bucks. The whole idea is removal from the net of the damaging text.

The idea that everyone should be identified on the net will be encouraged by the copywrong gang. If that is done, they no longer have to show up at the local city and hire a lawyer to find out who is who. At that point, they can just fire off a letter from California or where ever to the person, no expense involved. Which is exactly what this attempt to do is. To get around the cost of court that protects your identity and privacy. As it is, there are very few places I care to give my real name. Often I won't comment at places simply because to do so, requires you to sign up. This site and a few others are rare exceptions to that rule.

All this is, is someone with an injured sense of pride, likely well earned, wanting to shut someone up over their screw up.
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Old 25-05-12, 17:01   #3
 
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Default Re: New US "Internet Protection Act" Bans Anonymous Comments Online

You are exactly right,,,,,as usual. Thanks
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