[linux-elitists] Elcomsoft not guilty

Ben Woodard woodard@redhat.com
Wed Dec 18 15:01:56 PST 2002

Hi Don, long time no talk.
I like your comment and I really feel the spirit that you are trying to
convey it resonates with me. I'd love to believe that almost every
anti-circumvention DMCA case would be nullified but I'm worried that
jury nullification is one of those freedoms and rights that is on the
endangered list. From what I've heard and what Nina has personally seen,
the members of the jury are not informed about their rights to nullify a
conviction and in fact the lawyers and often times the judge try to
convince the jury that they do not have the right to interpret the law
but only pronounce guilt or innocence in a stict legal sense.

I hope it isn't so but with Bush's amazing (to me) popularity rating and
more and more of our rights seeming to evaporate every day. I find
myself having to fall back to my old saw, "By definition half the
population is below average intellegence." (Technically half the
population is below the median intellegence but since the distribution
of the data is almost perfectly guassian the median=average.)


On Wed, 2002-12-18 at 15:02, Don Marti wrote:
> begin Rusty Foster quotation of Tue, Dec 17, 2002 at 10:19:01PM -0500:
> > At the very least, this has set one precedent for a type of
> > case the government will now find it harder to win next time, which
> > means the DMCA is a little weaker today than it was yesterday.
> This verdict clearly represents a giant glowing neon Jury
> Nullification of the anticircumvention provisions of the DMCA.
> A blanket anticircumvention law, no matter how logical it may seem
> to Bruce Lehman, is so unjust that if you pick 12 random citizens
> and present it to them, they'll reject it.
> We The People say to the copyright cartels: this goes too far.
> Not convinced?  This should convince you: my hopeful interpretation
> is exactly the opposite of what DMCA proponents want you to think.
> They're desperately, frantically spinning it to say that the
> acquital is merely the result of fine lawyering by Joseph Burton,
> and an ever-so-exciting spat over the meaning of "willful", but
> fair use was never an issue.  And innovators had better watch out
> because future DMCA prosecutions can come at any time.
> They're wrong.
> The acquital is something we can take to Congress.  "Look,
> people don't think laws against circumvention should apply to
> non-infringers.  Please reform the DMCA to reflect this."
> Even if the next round of the Lofgren and/or Boucher reform bill
> fails, it gets the "DMCA suppresses free speech and fair use"
> meme in front of the next group of potential jurors.
Ben Woodard <woodard@redhat.com>

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