Reddit Co-Founder, Open Info Activist Bullied by DOJ Commits Suicide

If you’re using an RSS feed to help keep track of Hit & Run blog posts or the Reason 24/7 news feed, Aaron Swartz gets some of the credit. The young programmer helped developed them.

He committed suicide Friday at the young age of 26. Via Wired:

When he was a 14 years old, Aaron helped develop the RSS standard; he went on to found Infogami, which became part of Reddit. But more than anything Aaron was a coder with a conscience: a tireless and talented hacker who poured his energy into issues like network neutrality, copyright reform and information freedom.  Among countless causes, he worked with Larry Lessig at the launch of the Creative Commons, architected the Internet Archive’s free public catalog of books, OpenLibrary.org, and in 2010 founded Demand Progress, a non-profit group that helped drive successful grassroots opposition to SOPA last year.

“Aaron was steadfast in his dedication to building a better and open world,” writes Internet Archive founder Brewster Kahle. “He is among the best spirits of the Internet generation. I am crushed by his loss, but will continue to be enlightened by his work and dedication.”

Swartz was a victim of bullying. Not from jocks of frat boys targeting a brilliant tech nerd for being too smart. Rather, he was being harassed by the government – the Department of Justice specifically – for his activism in trying to make academic journals and public court records freely available online:

JSTOR provides searchable, digitized copies of academic journals online. MIT had a subscription to the database, so Aaron brought a laptop onto MIT’s campus, plugged it into the student network and ran a script called keepgrabbing.py that aggressively — and at times disruptively — downloaded one article after another. When MIT tried to block the downloads, a cat-and-mouse game ensued, culminating in Swartz entering a networking closet on the campus, secretly wiring up an Acer laptop to the network, and leaving it there hidden under a box. A member of MIT’s tech staff discovered it, and Aaron was arrested by campus police when he returned to pick up the machine.

The JSTOR hack was not Aaron’s first experiment in liberating costly public documents. In 2008, the federal court system briefly allowed free access to its court records system, Pacer, which normally charged the public eight cents per page. The free access was only available from computers at 17 libraries across the country, so Aaron went to one of them and installed a small PERL script he had written that cycled sequentially through case numbers, requesting a new document from Pacer every three seconds, and uploading it to the cloud. Aaron pulled nearly 20 million pages of public court documents, which are now available for free on the Internet Archive.

Swartz did not profit from these activities whatsoever and JSTOR reportedly did not pursue any sort of justice for his intrusive but ultimately harmless hack. Nevertheless, federal prosecutors went after him, charging him with 13 federal counts. A trial was set for April. Alex Stamos was helping as an expert to prepare Swartz’s defense – Swartz faced the possibility of 35 years in prison – and details here the absurdity of the intensity of the DOJ’s efforts against the young man:

If I had taken the stand as planned and had been asked by the prosecutor whether Aaron’s actions were “wrong”, I would probably have replied that what Aaron did would better be described as “inconsiderate”. In the same way it is inconsiderate to write a check at the supermarket while a dozen people queue up behind you or to check out every book at the library needed for a History 101 paper.

In June, I wrote about efforts by activists to open access to government-funded academic research.  They filed a petition at the White House’s “We the People” site. It received more than 50,000 signatures, twice the threshold needed to get a response from the administration.

This past week, the White House responded to recent trollish petitions about seceding from the union, deporting Piers Morgan, and building a Death Star. Yet it still has not responded to the open access petition.

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  • SIV||

    recent trollish petitions

    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances the lulz.

  • Scott S.||

    Hey, I'm not blaming the trolls.

  • Xenocles||

    I blame them a little for giving the administration cover to avoid responding to the hard issues.

  • ||

    Exactly. The Death Star petition easily passes the threshold for getting an official response but I doubt anything involving the drone program would.

  • Xenocles||

    Oh, several hard issues have passed the signature threshold, but are ignored via the "only if we want to" guarantee of the petition site. But they need to respond to something, so they pick the "You're awesome, let me have your beer recipe" and "I'm a crank, pay attention to me" ones.

  • SIV||

    The secession petitions were neither of those.

  • Xenocles||

    The ones who wanted it for themselves were cranks. Consensual secession may come, but not before a lot of other things happen. Responding to those was just a way of poking people in the eye. The ones who wanted it for others were sucking up in a "You're awesome, kick those ingrates out" sort of way.

    Either way, it's an easy "no" response that they can give with an upturned nose and a dismissive chuckle.

  • SIV||

    The anti-secession petitions were to forcibly deport.As usual one side asked for non-violence and the other demanded violence.

  • Paleo-ConAvenger||

    I have to say, their overly condescending responses to the Secession and Impeachment petitions have me a tad concerned...since I signed both of them.

  • tarran||

    You set up an account on a whitehouse server?

    What's wrong with you? The whole exercise is a big data mining thing.

  • Paleo-ConAvenger||

    I didnt say I was thinking at the time..

  • Xenocles||

    Petitioning the President to impeach himself was a work of unqualified stupidity. They were spot on in that respect.

  • ||

    The only petition I've signed was for the one about the motorcyle-riding combined judge/jury/executioner "Judges".

  • SIV||

    At least Shackford understands the deport Piers Morgan petition was trolling. reason ran the A. Barton Hinkle recycling of a Conor Friedersdorf column taking it dead seriously.

  • SIV||

  • Hawk Spitui||

    Rather disingenuous of them, given that several of those who knew him related that he'd been suffering from depression for at least a decade...

    http://newslines.org/wiki/cate.....on-swartz/

    It may be a short list, but there are some things even Obama can't be blamed for.

  • SIV||

    MIT and the DoJ deserve the bad publicity. Swartz was wholly responsible for his own death but I don't blame a grieving family for lashing out at his persecutors.

  • ||

    I don't blame a grieving family for lashing out at his persecutors.

    I realize it's not the same thing in this situation and I'm slightly off topic, but I can't stand the grieving family excuse. You hear it time and time again. "We know such and such killed our father/mother daughter/child..." Long before there's a trial, many times on circumstantial evidence and sometimes NO evidence.

    I'd like to think that even if it was my wife that was killed, I'd have the principles to ensure I had the right guy before condemning someone. The only thing worse than a family member getting killed would be putting an innocent person away for it.

  • Sevo||

    Beat me to it.

  • SIV||

    MIT won't be charged. I'd object to a civil suit against them as well.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    Bravo, Francisco. Nor should it be followed by a "we understand how you feel" leading to wrongful and wrongheaded arrests. If the family is too grieved to rationally speak out publicly then appoint a "Tom Hagen" to speak on their behalf.

  • Sevo||

    You may not blame them but their emotions have no more validity than the folks in Newtown yapping at Biden.

  • SIV||

    What if the upstate NY firefighters' families blamed the parole board?
    I'd say that would be perfectly valid even though the parole board didn't shoot the firemen.

  • BoscoH||

    I saw his name trending on Twitter this morning, clicked to see why, was absolutely shocked. I first ran into Aaron 14 years ago on a small private list/board of Mac developers. Aaron was hanging out and impressing us with his knowledge and youthful snottiness. AI saw him drawn to some of the crazy ideas like "information wants to be free, open source, etc." that many of us going the entrepreneurial build a product and sell it on the Internet route didn't totally get. I sure as hell didn't get it. The bills I had to pay, equipment I had to buy, and people I had to contract work out to sure as hell didn't get it. I know I tried to steer him in a direction of entrepreneurship, make great products, delight people. It was entirely selfish, and I've thought over the years as I've watched his career that it was mostly ineffective too. Though he contributed to much greater things than I have, that's for sure!

    This kid was wicked smart when he was 12 or 13, and has demonstrated wicked smarts since. Brash, ready to just fuck authority and see what happened. With the MIT thing, it's not the way I would have done it, but credit for him for doing it anyway. A life well lived. And yet, so much promise lost in an instant.

    I have come to wonder what the last song he listened to was. I imagine he would have known, because I imagine he would have been very deliberate about taking his own life.

    http://www.aaronsw.com/2002/continuity

  • Sevo||

    "AI saw him drawn to some of the crazy ideas like "information wants to be free, open source, etc." that many of us going the entrepreneurial build a product and sell it on the Internet route didn't totally get. I sure as hell didn't get it. The bills I had to pay, equipment I had to buy, and people I had to contract work out to sure as hell didn't get it. I know I tried to steer him in a direction of entrepreneurship, make great products, delight people. It was entirely selfish, and I've thought over the years as I've watched his career that it was mostly ineffective too. Though he contributed to much greater things than I have, that's for sure!"

    Personally, I'm guessing that you'll do far better than he did in about any measure you can find.
    Knowledge is an economic good; it costs time to develop. Why some claim that it should be free while food should be paid for is a mystery to me.
    To be clear, I didn't know the guy and my comments are directed only to the information from the article and your post.

  • BoscoH||

    Well, I'm not comparing myself, or even lamenting that when I had a chance to cast an impression, I didn't steer him the right direction. I was but one voice in a talkative bunch, and frankly not 1/4 as engaged as most there. Nor was what I was selling to a 12 year old extremely precocious kid all that interesting ;-). I mean hell, there was one guy in that crowd who left his wife and kids, moved to the city, started dressing in drag, and then had a sex change. If you met him before all that, you'd never have imagined. Another one of the most brilliant people I've known...

    I still think that too many of these "information wants to be free" people are coming from a bad place of just wanting everything their way and free too. And I think Aaron had a little too much of that in him. But his stunts pointed out the folly of the inverse. Information sure as hell doesn't want to be locked up with someone running a toll booth. Knowledge does not need to be owned and exclusive to have utility. It can be, of course, and it can be in order to extract rents from its application. I think the balance here is the realization that to optimize those rents, one often needs to give a little away as well, so as to promote awareness of the knowledge. That, by the way, is the way knowledge hoarders could route around the Aaron Swartzes of the world.

  • Sevo||

    "Information sure as hell doesn't want to be locked up with someone running a toll booth."

    Uh, if you spent X years discovering that information at your expense, I'd bet you'e want a toll booth on it.
    Unless someone was providing you free room, board, money to go on dates, etc.

  • BoscoH||

    I hear you. And I make my money selling exclusive access to information I create, so I'm pretty sensitive on this point ;-).

    I think the best metaphor I have for how I act doing what I do is "honor among thieves". I don't consider selling access to intangible information assets "stealing", but I do think that a gracious attitude about being able to do that rather than pick cotton or carry chunks of coal from a mine goes a long way. In the case of JSTOR and MIT, the right response was simply to recognize him for the lengths he went and offer to cooperate with him to make public information accessible to the public through a free channel. It would not have cost them $1 in lost revenue, completely diffused the situation, and probably not given Swartz the attention he sought.

  • Voros McCracken||

    "Uh, if you spent X years discovering that information at your expense, I'd bet you'e want a toll booth on it."

    Well sure, but we _want_ lots of things. I developed something that if monetized by now was probably worth $200 million at this point (maybe?). Would I have like to seen 50% of that? Damn right. I'd like to have seen 1% of that actually.

    But that's just not realistic when it comes to the transfer of knowledge. To make it worse, actions to try and legally stop others from using it often make things far worse for everyone.

    If I show 'A divided by B' is a way to make money, to legally stop people from dividing A by B unless they give me a cut gives me ownership of their thoughts. And that's a bad idea.

    You can't have it both ways: you either keep the idea as secret as possible, preventing others from knowing it but also greatly limiting your ability to market it as valuable. Or else you start telling people and make whatever you can until it becomes common knowledge.

  • SIV||

    The knowledge in the public domain journals was free. JSTOR's "property rights" were limited to the scans.

  • Zeb||

    And the court documents certainly should be free.

  • BoscoH||

    One more thing to add... I think a lot of people that Aaron associated himself with early egged him on, mostly for sport. When he worked on RSS, he was spending weeks at a time away from home, camping on couches, exposed to who knows what. Some of his best friends never met his parents. Cory Doctorow said as much this morning. That seems weird to me, especially when those friendships began when Aaron was a minor.

    You know what it is? A lot of circles of technically brilliant people, are freak shows. Your kids, no matter how precocious and aged beyond their years, need to just stay away until they are of an age to take it all in. Aaron is a tragic example of that.

  • Robert||

    Info has costs, but when those costs have already been paid for by your tax $, why allow gov't to reap multiply for them?

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    Information should be free indeed - up to a point. I don't like that JSTOR charges for information but I do get the point. You have to pay for that stuff. The problem with scholarly writing is that we feel entitled to someone else's ideas and thoughts. But the person doing the writing does it for a living too.

    So I'm on the fence with hackers. They're not my conscience and are full of shit if they think they hold the moral high ground.

  • ||

    35 years just for pirating academic journals and disseminating them with no attempt to profit off of them. Talk about the Department of Injustice.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Theft is theft whether the thief profits or not.

  • ||

    Yeah, I totally forgot those groups no longer have any access to the documents, them having been stolen and all. Oh wait....

  • Cytotoxic||

    That doesn't make it any less of a theft.

  • ||

    Well actually, yes it does. Sort of the point, copying is not the same as theft, no matter how many people claim otherwise.

  • Cytotoxic||

    Wrong. If I copy your identity or trespass on your property in such a way as to not deprive you of it, it's still a crime. Not exactly theft but whatever.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    35 years for trespass then?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I don't think anyone here is defending the DOJ's throwing the book at him. The issue is Shackford's sugar coating of his crimes.

  • ||

    Calling it "intrusive but ultimately harmless" is hardly "sugarcoating" it. You're just trying to turn a mountain into a molehill with everything you're reading into his single sentence.

  • robc||

    It should have been a civil issue at worse.

    Sue him for damages.

  • Les||

    No one is "sugar coating." They are "explaining."

    http://unhandled.com/2013/01/1.....tzs-crime/

  • ||

    Except the issue I'm disputing is EXACTLY that of theft. Nowhere have I suggested his trespassing wasn't a crime.

  • ||

    First reply above was to Tulpa, second was to Cyto. [Insert obligatory damnation of threaded comments here].

  • ||

    Yes, but copyright infringement (which isn't what the JSTOR journals were about, btw) with no monetary gain is a tort, not a criminal offense.

    The owner of the copyright has to prove real, quantifiable damage to get criminal prosecution (like bootlegged DVDs, etc.) The *AA's "you're stealing" doesn't count as proof of real damage.

    Copying someone's identity isn't about copyright, so it's always a crime.

  • robc||

    copyright violation != theft

  • ||

    I guess it depends whether or not my taxes paid for the development of said information. If I paid for it, I own it, and it is therefore NOT theft.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Lots of stuff on JSTOR is not government funded at all.

    And again, by this logic, anything GE or GM produces must be given away for free because they benefit from govt largesse.

  • ||

    Didn't say it was or wasn't government funded. Pointing out that if it is, meaning the government funded the research or compilation of data, then it is public domain.

    I'd say bailing out a company, wrong as that may be, doesn't entitle the public to their trade secrets as it was not the information/research itself that was publicly funded.

  • niobiumstudio||

    Calling this theft is disingenuous at best Tulpa. He legally had access to JSTOR through his LEGAL access to the MIT network. What he did with the content after he LEGALLY accessed it would be between Aaron and JSTOR in a CIVIL proceeding seeing as his re-publishing of data on JSTOR is simple copyright infringement. Have you read the indictment? http://www.scribd.com/doc/6036.....indictment you should read it. If you aren't farmiliar with MIT's network - they have the single most open network out of any school in the country and do so on purpose. His biggest "crime" COULD have been trespassing IF the school asked him to leave - since he was a student there and legally had access to the grounds and network. The "offense" that he "broke into a wiring closet" is BS since it was unlocked, there was no notification stating it was private, he was legally in the building at the time, nobody asked him to leave, and he caused no damage to the closet, networking gear or anything else that was there - the worst it could be is trespassing if they asked him to leave. To anyone farmiliar with even basic networking, the indictment reads as a joke...you have to pick your jaw up off the floor when you realize there was a real threat of 35 years in prison for what is literally chil's play and computing on a public network 101... The DOJ is calling "changing your local IP address" and "not using your REAL e-mail address" offenses...

  • niobiumstudio||

    PS - the same closet he broke into was also being used by a homeless man to store his personal belongings at the time Aaron "broke in"... he wasn't prosecuted for actual trespassing and "breaking into" the same closet - even though he was not a student and had no legal access to the building...

  • robc||

    Copyright violation != theft

  • The Derider||

    Enforcing MIT's property rights is now bullying? Anarchy here we come.

  • Paleo-ConAvenger||

    Shut up, Joe

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    joe has a point here.

  • Sevo||

    Uh, well, let's see...
    I'm agreeing (sorta) with Tulpa, and the sorta is a result of my suspicion that deidiot really posted as simply a troll rather than a personal opinion.
    Per my post above; knowledge isn't "free" and should be only if those who own it care to provide it for nothing.

  • Paleo-ConAvenger||

    I thought I was just following policy of responding to all leftist sockpuppets with a clear "fuck you" or "shut up"?

  • Sevo||

    ^?
    What mean?

  • SIV||

    Corporate bullying, joe.

    I thought you progtards hated corporate bullying?

  • The Derider||

    I'm sure most progressives would agree wholeheartedly with Shackford here. I don't.

  • ||

    Oh joe, don't you have an appointment with an auto-asphyxiation noose, you fucking midget?

  • The Derider||

    You have some weird fantasies, dude.

  • ||

    Uh oh, did I hit a nerve? Too close to home, joe?

  • Solanum||

    joe's last attempt. Fortunately for him, the gang always cuts him down in time.

  • Jordan||

    35 years is totally reasonable for theft/trespassing. Enjoy your police state.

  • The Derider||

    It's our police state. Unless you're planning to leave?

  • niobiumstudio||

    Yes, "student broke our internet terms of service because he changed his IP address and used a fake e-mail address to get on our OPEN network" is the same as enforcing property rights... right. They didn't like what he was doing so used a badly written outdated law to bring the DOJ down on him. Have you ever used a neighbors internet access because yours was down? Have you ever used the internet at a hotel, but didn't put in your personal e-mail address or full name because you didn't want spam? Did you ever change your IP address at Panera because you ran out of time on the network and were trying to finish your work? That is LITERALLY what he was being charged with because of the terribly written outdated laws on the books. If you ever did any of the things I listed above, you could be charged with the exact same "crimes..."

  • niobiumstudio||

    And I am not making this up - read the indictment: http://www.scribd.com/doc/6036.....indictment

  • Paleo-ConAvenger||

    Off topic: Im looking to buy/possess my first handgun. Has anyone here had any experience with Heritage Manufacturing? Their revolvers look real good for the price.

  • Xenocles||

    No experience with Heritage, but I found Hi-Point's carbines to be well-made, functional, and inexpensive, which I assume translates to their pistols (the price certainly does). If you can live with a heavy pistol and a 10-round limit on manufacturer-made magazines, and if price is very important, I'd go for them.

    My only handgun is a Springfield XD in 9mm, which I recommend without reservation if price is no object.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I have a Hi Point 45 and it's pretty good. Heavy as heck, as you mention.

    But a beginner really should start with 22LR as their caliber, which Hi Point doesn't make any guns for. Low recoil and cheap for lots and lots of practicing.

  • Xenocles||

    You're right, but I just assumed he had experience using pistols but not owning them.

  • Paleo-ConAvenger||

    I do have experience with firearms, this will just be my "first" pistol I'll be carrying around when camping/hiking. I grew up using my grandfather's Luger.

    I'll probably end up getting a semi-auto pistol/rimfire like you mentioned.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    That might actually change things. What do you plan on using it for while camping? 22lr is not an optimal defense caliber. It's good for varmint or squirrels or whatnot.

  • Grenator Bole||

    Look at the Ruger or Browning semi-auto .22s for what you're describing.

  • Being Waterboarded||

    I agree about the Springfields. I have the Springfield XD .40, which is a fine piece of engineering.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I had one of their "Rough Rider" revolvers, which I assume is what you're talking about, and hated it. The cylinder jammed like the third time I went out shooting it. As soon as it gets the slightest bit dirty it starts having jamming issues and with 22lr it doesn't take long to get dirty. Also it has an extremely annoying manual safety, which is almost unheard of for a revolver. And the safety is a little scrap of plastic that always feels like it's about to fall off.

    Unfortunately there aren't many inexpensive, well made 22 revolvers out there. There's the LCR which is double action only, or the Single Six/Nine/Ten from Ruger which are single action but somewhat expensive.

    If you're not wedded to a revolver, you can get a good 22 semiauto pistol for lower prices. The "unreliability" of semiautos that revolver fanboys harp on is fairly minimal in modern times when you get one from a good manufacturer. Ruger 22/45 or MkII/III, Smith & Wesson 22A, Beretta U22 Neos, Browning Buckmark are all popular options. But definitely see how any gun fits in your hand before you buy it.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I should specify that I was talking about the LCR22 as an option... there are LCRs made for several different caliber, the original being 38 special, which is not a great caliber to learn with.

  • Xenocles||

    I forget how expensive the North American Arms are once you get into the Black Widow or Mini Master series.

  • SIV||

    No
    How much are you going to save over a nice used Ruger Blackhawk or Vaquero?

    If you're looking at the .22 I'd consider the Heritage although I opted for a Ruger Single-Six.

    If you can afford it always opt for quality and resale value.

  • Sernylan||

    "Has anyone here had any experience with Heritage Manufacturing?"

    Which one are you looking at? I owned a 7-1/2" .22/.22wmrf combo from Heritage, it had an alloy frame (not a fan of it)...but it wasn't a bad pistol for the money by any means. I sold it off, and bought a Ruger single six combo (with a steel frame)

  • CJR||

    I would never recommend a revolver for a first pistol, much less a single-action revolver. Unless you know that you're going to get into Cowboy Action Shooting, that is.

    What do you want the pistol for?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Single action can be good for beginners due to the easier trigger pull. Less stuff to think about when you're just learning to shoot.

  • CJR||

    First, you can get a pistol with a nice trigger pull without going to a niche gun like a single-action revolver.

    Second, a light trigger can actually be a handicap for a developing shooter, in that it never forces one to learn good trigger control. I know a few guys who came up on custom 1911s who can't shoot anything else well. They never learned how to manage a double-action trigger.

  • Zeb||

    I have a Heritage single action .22 revolver. It works, never had any problems. If it is the same as what Tulpa had, they must have improved the safety. It has a hammer block, but mine is metal and seems solid and stays where you want it.

  • Hawk Spitui||

    I see Mr. Swartz has made H&R before.

    I knew I recognized that face!

  • Sevo||

    Yeah, that's my gripe about the guy. Posting government (paid for by taxpayers) data is one thing, the MIT caper seems another to me.
    No comment re: His suicide.

  • Jesus H. Christ||

    If the MIT research was publicly funded, it should available publicly, for either no, or nominal cost. $.08/page for a download is absurd.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Not every paper in JSTOR is publicly funded.

    And by that logic everything GE makes should be free too since they get tax credits.

  • ||

    GE makes stuff like refrigerators, which if you take one, it is no longer available to the owner.

    Publicly funded papers, OTOH, were paid for with stolen money, so "stealing" them back hardly seems like a crime even if you feel IP is something that should be defended. That's more like recovering stolen property at worst.

  • ||

    Now, if in the process of getting copies of the papers you made the originals inaccessible to the owners, then they would have a solid case for theft.

  • The Derider||

    I'm pretty sure MIT is alleging a violation of their property rights happened because Swartz hacked their private network, not because he stole their intellectual property.

  • Sevo||

    Jesus H. Christ| 1.12.13 @ 7:57PM |#
    "If the MIT research was publicly funded,..."

    "IF".

  • TomC||

    If you want to mourn the loss of someone who was legitimately skilled with technology I have no problem with that. But there are a few mis-truths here...

    First, he didn't "help develop the RSS standard". He was part of a group that tried to pull RSS back to its RDF foundation by releasing the RSS 1.0 standard. But that standard split the community and created two factions. Swartz's faction lost out to Userland's standard (which is the one people refer to as RSS today)

    (For the record I believe his standard was better and if it had been adopted there would have been no need for ATOM but that's a different story)

    Second he isn't a co-founder of Reddit. As the quote above says he had a separate site that became part of Reddit a year after its founding. The founders of Reddit acquired that site and tried to incorporate him into the company but his personality was so volatile that they had to part ways with him. Calling him a co-founder is disrespectful to all the hard work the actual co-founders did.

    Finally on the JSTOR thing let us at least be honest about what he did. He broke into private property (an MIT wiring closet), used an account that was not his own to access a private network, took data off that network and then distributed it without the permission of the people who created it. Some of those creators might have supported his action but he had no way of knowing.

    I do think it was wrong for the DOJ to prosecute him if MIT didn't want charges filed.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    This is Reason once again expressing their sympathies with the left, that's all.

    Shackford had been refraining from that in the past, so this is disappointing.

  • Paleo-ConAvenger||

    This^^

  • The Longest Cocktail Party||

    Yes indeed. No matter how loudly cosmotarians claim to be libertarians, ultimately they're only another manifestation of They.

  • ||

    I hope your link was meant as a joke. I'd heard that Taki's is nuts before, and now I'm sure of it. I almost expected to see the phrase "3rd world invaders" in it (they got close, though).

  • SIV||

    The Jim Goad pieces are always worth the time it takes to read them.

  • ||

    If I ever see one of his pieces, I'll keep that in mind. Thanks for the advice.

  • dumass404||

    I can't refute anything that was said, and I can't offer a single fact in rebuttal. But I don't like what was said so it's WRONG! WRONG! WRONG!

  • Zeb||

    What the fuck is a cosmotarian?

  • ||

    Translation: Any thoughts other than the Tulpa-approved™ thoughts are the bad thoughts. Bad thinking, bad!

    You don't have to think his MIT-stunt was right to believe that the DOJ's hardon over the matter is just another instance of the government flexing their muscles to show how tough they are or that it was a waste of time and money.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Swartz did not profit from these activities whatsoever and JSTOR reportedly did not pursue any sort of justice for his intrusive but ultimately harmless hack.

  • ||

    I'm not sure what point you're making here, unless you're trying to support the notion that the prosecution was a waste of time and money. It WAS harmless. Unless you're talking about the monetary costs of his access, which probably doesn't amount to very much.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    It was only "harmless" because he got caught before he could make off with the stolen data.

    And I never thought I'd see libertarians consider B&E and trespassing "harmless" in themselves.

  • ||

    "Unless you're talking about the monetary costs of his access, which probably doesn't amount to very much."

    You CAN read, can you? Anyway, SIV sums this one up nicely:

    The stuff was JSTOR's and they didn't seem to mind so much. MIT's complaint is limited to trespassing and minor property damage.The appropriate penalty for that in a first offense should be limited to restitution,and some combination of probation community service at most. The DoJ was hanging 35 years in a Federal pen over his head.
  • Zeb||

    If he had been charged with B&E or trespass in Mass. I don't think anyone here would have objected.

  • Cytotoxic||

    ^THIS^

  • robc||

    Has nothing to do with the left.

    Especially the pacer part.

    And that is the part I think that really pissed the Feds off.

    Pacer data absolutely should be public domain.

  • SIV||

    MIT seems to have approved of the prosecution.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    TomC, it's pretty much what I found on my own reseaching this guy. Thanks.

    Also, I agree about JSTOR. I don't know. I'm just a layman with all this stuff.

    It strikes me as one of those snotty hackers who have no clue about the ramifications of their actions. He hacked into something that's not his and saying it should be "free" is not an excuse. There are other ways to make your point heard.

    If I owned something like JSTOR and that kid did that to me...shit. People WROTE those things. How is it any different than charging for a novel, or whatever?

    that's why groups like Anonymous live me very uncomfortable. Cyber-vigilantism is serious shit.

    Can someone set me straight if I'm off here?

  • sloopyinca||

    Theft is theft, and MIT had a right to their own stuff. That said, it should have been a civil matter if MIT chose to pursue one.

    I could see a state charge of tresspassing but that's it on the criminal front.

  • Sevo||

    sloopyinca| 1.12.13 @ 8:00PM |#
    "Theft is theft, and MIT had a right to their own stuff. That said, it should have been a civil matter if MIT chose to pursue one."
    Nope. Theft is a criminal matter.

    "I could see a state charge of tresspassing but that's it on the criminal front."
    Could be, but now you're reaching.

  • sloopyinca||

    FTA: When MIT tried to block the downloads, a cat-and-mouse game ensued, culminating in Swartz entering a networking closet on the campus, secretly wiring up an Acer laptop to the network, and leaving it there hidden under a box.

    Not reaching at all. The rest of the charges are reaching, but a tresspassing charge seems pretty standard unless they want to go with B&E. Either way, the Feds should never have been involved.

  • Sevo||

    Sloopy, c'mon.
    Yeah, he "trespassed". He did so to "steal".

  • sloopyinca||

    True, but I consider the "theft" a civil matter in this case.

  • SIV||

    JSTOR declined to press charges.Swartz was "stealing" their stuff.

  • ||

    ^^
    And that says it all...except to busybodies.

  • SIV||

    The stuff was JSTOR's and they didn't seem to mind so much. MIT's complaint is limited to trespassing and minor property damage.The appropriate penalty for that in a first offense should be limited to restitution,and some combination of probation community service at most. The DoJ was hanging 35 years in a Federal pen over his head.

  • Sevo||

    SIV,
    There is no way I'm going to defend the DoJ.
    But whether JSTOR minded or not is sort of aside from criminal matters; that economic good was being lifted.
    JSTOR may want to be magnanimous, but...

  • SIV||

    Is theft a crime against the property owner or the state?

  • Sevo||

    Of course it is a crime against the owner, but unless you're willing to grant that murder is 'only' a crime against the victim, the state has interest in the matter.
    Gonna go all anarchy on me?

  • sloopyinca||

    In the case of murder, the state has an interest since the victim cannot state whether or not he wants to pursue charges. In the case of a theft, I think it's the property owner's right to either pursue criminal, civil or no relief at all.

    It's like that schoolteacher/Bengals cheerleader that was involved in a consensual relationship with a student. The kid nor his parents wanted to pursue the matter but the state pursued it anyway. As a matter of fact, they were hostile witnesses who only testified under threat of a bench warrant.

  • SIV||

    If hobos were eating apples off my trees and fish from my pond I'd pursue a trespassing complaint but not theft.
    I don't see where the state should be able to prosecute for theft.

  • sloopyinca||

    Wait, now hobos are the good bums, right?

    What if it was a bunch of Occutards and they said they were entitled to the apples because you were a 1%er?

  • SIV||

    "Loose the presa canarios"

  • Sevo||

    SIV| 1.12.13 @ 8:42PM |#
    "If hobos were eating apples off my trees and fish from my pond I'd pursue a trespassing complaint but not theft.
    I don't see where the state should be able to prosecute for theft."

    SIV, I'm pretty sure you are familiar with the phrase 'special pleading'. And I doubt I need to post more about the issue.

  • sloopyinca||

    If hobos were eating apples off my trees and fish from my pond I'd pursue a trespassing complaint but not theft.

    The Department of Fish and Wildlife would like a word with you for allowing people to take the state's fish without a license.

  • SIV||

    DNR doesn't own the fish in a private pond. The state owns the wildlife that can enter and leave my property but not the stock I have introduced and confined.

    Hell in GA I own the turtles that invade my private pond even if they crawled there from a public waterway.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    In the case of murder, the state has an interest since the victim cannot state whether or not he wants to pursue charges.

    Murder may not be the best example. What about attempted murder or kidnapping or rape where there were other witnesses besides the victim? Should the victim be able to say there can be no prosecution?

  • sloopyinca||

    If the victim doesn't consider him/herself a victim, then no crime has occurred. If they are unable to say one way or another due to incapacitation/death/disappearance, then the state can make that determination on their behalf.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    So you're claiming future changes of mind can change the nature of an event in the past?

  • ||

    So you're claiming future changes of mind can change the nature of an event in the past?

    It can't change what physically happened, but for example the difference between "very rough consensual sex" and "rape" depends on the internal mental state of the passive partner, and that mental state can change depending on subsequent events, such as cuddling and bonding afterwards versus mocking her and calling her names and leaving immediately after an orgasm.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    That's a change to the victim's view of the act, not to the act itself.

    There is no way that cuddling can turn rape into not-rape.

  • Zeb||

    "There is no way that cuddling can turn rape into not-rape."

    I the eyes of the law it can. If the victim decides it was OK.

  • sloopyinca||

    So you're claiming future changes of mind can change the nature of an event in the past?

    It worked for the Deepwater Horizon case. Why is it OK for the FedGov (the victim) to drop criminal charges of manslaughter against employees of a company in lieu of a $1.4B payoff?

  • Ted S.||

    Why is it OK for the FedGov (the victim) to drop criminal charges of manslaughter against employees of a company in lieu of a $1.4B payoff?

    Because fuck you, that's why.

  • sloopyinca||

    Ding! Ding! Ding!

    We have a winner!

  • ||

    What about attempted murder or kidnapping or rape where there were other witnesses besides the victim?

    I have a big problem with these being presented as cases such as "The People versus X", where by "the people" they mean "the state".

    If someone shoots a gun at me, and I decide to forgive them for that for whatever reason, then it shouldn't be any gotdamn business of the state to press charges no matter how many witnesses there are. It's not "attempted murder" if you view it as "my lover got kind of pissed at me and did something regrettable and I want to resolve it by moving out and never seeing her again and leaving it at that"

    Same with "rape" where the "victim" decides that he or she was OK with what occurred after thinking it over, or at least wants to resolve it some other way besides getting the local criminal gang's dispute resolution process involved.

  • The Derider||

    The state is enforcing its monopoly on the legitimate use of force.

    If your friend shoots a gun at you in Wall Mart, and you forgive him, Wall Mart still should have the right to kick you out.

  • Whahappan?||

    I'm sure you have some point in mind. And the state's use of force is rarely (or never) legitimate.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Is theft a crime against the property owner or the state?

    Yes.

  • Rufus J. Firefly||

    Apparently they were looking to "release" some of their stuff before his hacking. I know, I have an account at JSTOR and I'm glad I can access some of those fine papers.

  • robc||

    copyright violation != theft.

  • SIV||

    it's just like you're raping SOCIETY, when you're infected with AIDS!

  • Xenocles||

    How did Denver get so badly burned there? Holy crap.

  • sloopyinca||

    That's the third time they've been burned long today. Ray Lewis must have threatened to murder their secondary coach before kickoff.

  • Xenocles||

    Like I said on the other thread, I don't know who I want to face next week (and yes, my hubris here is monstrous).

  • sloopyinca||

    Whoever is calling offensive plays for Denver in OT has got sphincter lock.

  • waaminn||

    Wow that is jsut so so sad, RIP dude, rest in peace!

    www.hot-anon.tk

  • Sevo||

    Without comment about the guy's suicide:
    The data paid for by taxpayers is correctly the property of those taxpayers and there is no way Swartz or anyone should be prosecuted for distributing it.
    Distribution of data developed and owned by others without their consent is theft.

  • sloopyinca||

    Distribution of data developed and owned by others without their consent is theft.

    And IIRC, those people did not want to pursue the charges. If I'm wrong, then I stand corrected on what charges are appropriate.

  • Sevo||

    "And IIRC, those people did not want to pursue the charges. If I'm wrong, then I stand corrected on what charges are appropriate."

    Of course it is a crime against the owner, but unless you're willing to grant that murder is 'only' a crime against the victim, the state has interest in the matter.
    Gonna go all anarchy on me?

  • sloopyinca||

    In my opinion, and this is just an opinion, for a crime to be committed there has to be a victim. And the state has a right to pursue a murder charge for one reason: the victim of the crime is unable to state whether or not he wants the charges pursued.

    Ex.: A person enlists the help of a friend in ending their life because they have a terminal illness. The dying man writes a letter stating it is his wish to die and that the friend is helping him end his life. The guy shoots the dying friend between the eyes with a 30.06.

    Does the state have an interest in that matter?

  • SIV||

    Following Sevo I see the state pursuing rape charges against people for having consensual sex with a drunk partner.

  • RBS||

    Don't they already do that?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    How about if a rich guy offers the woman he raped in front of witnesses $100,000 not to press charges, and she accepts this offer. You don't think the state has a legitimate interest in making sure this creep is behind bars?

  • sloopyinca||

    No. Because the woman accepted payment as damages for the crime committed against her.

    See: Bryant, Kobe.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    So as long as you're rich, you can rape, assault, attempt murder, etc at will, and just pay off the plebes before going on your merry way. And there's not a thing the state can do to you.

  • Sevo||

    SIV| 1.12.13 @ 8:46PM |#
    "Following Sevo I see the state pursuing rape charges against people for having consensual sex with a drunk partner."
    Uh, well:

    Tulpa (LAOL-PA)| 1.12.13 @ 8:56PM |#
    "So as long as you're rich, you can rape, assault, attempt murder, etc at will, and just pay off the plebes before going on your merry way. And there's not a thing the state can do to you."
    Buying off the 'victim' /= the non-interest of the state.

  • sloopyinca||

    Once the payment from one actor to the other takes place, the act becomes consensual by contract, therefore no crime has taken place.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Hogwash. The nature of the act can't be changed by future events.

  • sloopyinca||

    The nature of the act can't be changed by future events.

    Yet somehow the payment of $1.4B from Transocean to the US Treasury resulted in all criminal charges against its employees being dropped.

  • sloopyinca||

    So as long as you're rich, you can rape, assault, attempt murder, etc at will, and just pay off the plebes before going on your merry way.

    Not if your victim pursues the matter.

    And there's not a thing the state can do to you.

    If the victim of the crime believes they have received justice, the matter should be closed. It's not like the rapist raped "society."

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Question, sloopy: how do you justify putting anyone in jail for any offense?

    If the answer is "to protect society from violent criminals" you just contradicted yourself.

  • RBS||

    how do you justify putting anyone in jail for any offense?

    Punishment.

  • sloopyinca||

    They're put in jail as punishment for their crime. If the victim doesn't believe they have been violated (for whatever reason), then there is no punishment due.

    Sorry, but I just don't believe someone can rape society.

  • Sevo||

    sloopyinca| 1.12.13 @ 9:14PM |#
    "Sorry, but I just don't believe someone can rape society."

    So there is no justification for criminal actions? Society has no interest in punishing certain activities?
    What did Suthenboy send you?

  • sloopyinca||

    If a victim ceases to be a victim, for whatever reason they decide, there is no crime. I'm sorry, but I just can't see where society was wronged in a greater sense if the victim decides not to pursue a criminal matter.

  • Sevo||

    sloopyinca| 1.12.13 @ 9:23PM |#
    "If a victim ceases to be a victim, for whatever reason they decide, there is no crime"

    I'm going to agree to disagree.
    If someone sells their 'rights' for $0.25, I refuse to accept that the state I pay to protect my rights gets to ignore them for someone's sale.

  • ||

    If someone sells their 'rights' for $0.25, I refuse to accept that the state I pay to protect my rights gets to ignore them for someone's sale.

    You're also refusing to accept:

    1) That the person is not selling their "rights", they are retaining their rights and settling on what they feel is just compensation for someone violating said rights.

    2) That you don't pay the state to protect your rights, but rather the state robs you without your consent and then does things such as pay police to do things that you may view as partially (or even fully) compensating you for the robbery.

    The state is a criminal gang, and if you decide that what they provide with the money they stole from you is adequate compensation for what they took without your consent, then you just contradicted your own argument. You just stipulated that if payment, however scanty, for a crime against you satisfies you, then there should be no further action, especially since you don't even recognize it as a crime.

  • The Derider||

    What you fail to consider is that crimes, both against property and person, have negative impacts beyond their immediate victims because they undermine general confidence in the security of those property rights.

  • sloopyinca||

    I didn't know "undermining general confidence in the security of rights" was a crime in a free society.

    Of course, "free society" and "America" should never, ever be used interchangeably.

  • Sevo||

    The Derider| 1.12.13 @ 9:51PM |#
    "What you fail to consider is that crimes, both against property and person, have negative impacts beyond their immediate victims because they undermine general confidence in the security of those property rights."

    Uh, what?! WHAT?! Deidiot argues for property rights?!
    Quite amazing that I agree 100%. ANY political system that makes rights questionable immediately makes not only the rights questionable, but makes the results of those rights questionable.
    The *ONLY* justification for government is the protection of individual freedoms.

  • sloopyinca||

    The *ONLY* justification for government is the protection of individual freedoms.

    But if the individual no longer feels their freedom has been violated, what is the government "protecting"?*

    *Other than their sprawling security state, bloated pay and pension schemes and general undermining of contracts?

  • Sevo||

    sloopyinca| 1.12.13 @ 10:10PM |#
    "The *ONLY* justification for government is the protection of individual freedoms."
    "But if the individual no longer feels their freedom has been violated, what is the government "protecting"?*"

    I'm not going to argue that the government is successful in doing so as currently constituted, only that that lacking such means we have no real alternatives.

  • sloopyinca||

    I get your point, I just humbly disagree.

  • ||

    ^This^

  • sloopyinca||

    I'm going to agree to disagree.

    And I can appreciate that. I can also appreciate that I'm in a small minority here and am glad nobody has used the word Somalia yet.

  • SIV||

    Retribution. "Protecting society" is just a side effect of punishing the guilty.

  • Sevo||

    sloopyinca| 1.12.13 @ 9:00PM |#
    "So as long as you're rich, you can rape, assault, attempt murder, etc at will, and just pay off the plebes before going on your merry way.
    Not if your victim pursues the matter."

    Which, of course, is exactly why the state would have an interest.
    If Jane Doe sold a rape charge for $0.25 'cause she wanted a smoke, I really don't think that Jane Smith should have to tolerate the attentions of John Smith.

  • ||

    How about if a rich guy offers the woman he raped in front of witnesses $100,000 not to press charges, and she accepts this offer. You don't think the state has a legitimate interest in making sure this creep is behind bars?

    First, I don't think the local criminal gang can do anything "legitimately", because they are a CRIMINAL GANG, even if you decide to label them a "government" because that sounds better.

    Second, even if you stipulate that the state has some function in preventing crime, if the woman who was raped would rather have $100K from the rapist rather than having him incarcerated, then that is her bidness to decide as the victim. If she decides she would rather he spend time behind bars, then fine.

    And if other people correctly decide that the rapist might irrevocably harm their loved ones, they should arm themselves and shoot the buggah when he next menaces someone.

  • RBS||

    You just blew Tulpa's mind.

  • Sevo||

    "Second, even if you stipulate that the state has some function in preventing crime, if the woman who was raped would rather have $100K from the rapist rather than having him incarcerated, then that is her bidness to decide as the victim. If she decides she would rather he spend time behind bars, then fine.
    And if other people correctly decide that the rapist might irrevocably harm their loved ones, they should arm themselves and shoot the buggah when he next menaces someone."

    Here's where anarchists separate from libertarians.
    I pay for the common defense and that includes protection from criminals.

  • ||

    I pay for the common defense and that includes protection from criminals.

    Do you voluntarily pay, or do you do so because you don't want to be thrown in a cage? Do you think there is some sort of contract there with the state, which they can break unilaterally if they so desire? Do you consider the state's police and courts to not act criminally towards you, and thus don't feel any need for protection from those criminals?

  • Sevo||

    protefeed| 1.12.13 @ 10:24PM |#
    I pay for the common defense and that includes protection from criminals.
    "Do you voluntarily pay, or do you do so because you don't want to be thrown in a cage"

    Suffice to say I would voluntarily pay for such protection. The reality is that I (and everyone else) pays for, well, all sorts of stupidity.

  • sloopyinca||

    And sadly we pay for it all because we don't want to be thrown in a cage.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    And if other people correctly decide that the rapist might irrevocably harm their loved ones, they should arm themselves and shoot the buggah when he next menaces someone.

    What if the buggah has more powerful arms and a bunch of brigands working for him?

  • sloopyinca||

    What if the buggah has more powerful arms and a bunch of brigands working for him?

    Well, if he's a county Sheriff there's not much we can do anyway.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    You're inserting red herrings like you've got a fishery in your back yard.

  • sloopyinca||

    ...or I was just making a joke, you soulless twat.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    It's not funny, you cunt-swilling Tardissimo.

  • Whahappan?||

    Then he wouldn't have agreed to pay $100,000 to the victim.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    Or what if 99% of the population hasn't heard of the buggah or kept up to date on his peccadillos?

    There is a prevailing interest in public safety and integrity of rights that any society -- anarchist or not -- has to deal with wrt certain types of criminal acts outside of dispute resolution.

  • sloopyinca||

    Not saying it applies to you, but this is the logic people use to lock up "potentially violent criminals" that have committed nothing more than a thoughtcrime.

    It is also used to involuntarily commit people because they are a perceived danger.

    Again it's just my opinion and I know I'm in a minority, but I believe charges should be up to the victim and penalties should be for the sole purpose of punishment.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    Understood, but whereas there is nothing intrinsically violent or aggressive about "thoughtcrime"-type actions, there is certainly something intrinsically wrong with a murderer or rapist on its face. I don't see anything unjust about maintaining a baseline punishment for violent acts, so long as it is a reasonable baseline implemented reasonably, etc.

    Even anarchy has banishment as an option.

  • ||

    I pay for the common defense and that includes protection from criminals.

    How about praying for common sense that includes the ability to differentiate copying lots of documents from killing someone? Having a document I wrote being copied is very, very different from a bullet ripping through my chest and mangling my heart. And killing me.

    You come across as a lot like the Drug Warrior that uses his favourite trope: namely, equalizing smoking the leaves of a plant to murdering someone. Moreover, as others have noted, murder is unique in that the victim is dead so he can't press charges on his own. JSTOR has been absolutely free to press charges for theft, which they have declined to do.

    Your use of murder as an analogy - a crime where the victim by definition cannot speak for him- or herself - suggests that you consider the wishes of a live victim, or a non-victim, to be irrelevant to your conception of justice. Suffice it to say: you come across as someone who's rather have third parties preempt the wishes of the potential complainant in such matters. Third-party preemption isn't easy to square with individual liberty.

  • Dan Bongard||

    How about praying for common sense that includes the ability to differentiate copying lots of documents from killing someone?

    That's why he was offered a plea deal for 6 months, silly. And why the maximum sentence he faced was 32 years, not "death by lethal injection".

    The appropriate analogy is if he broke into your house and copied every file and document he could get his hands on with the intent of giving them to other people. You know and I know that if that had happened you wouldn't be saying "oh, we can't give the poor little dear *jail time*".

    For this, he faced six months in prison. Boo hoo for the cowardly little thief -- it was a light sentence for the crime.

  • ||

    Ex.: A person enlists the help of a friend in ending their life because they have a terminal illness. The dying man writes a letter stating it is his wish to die and that the friend is helping him end his life. The guy shoots the dying friend between the eyes with a 30.06.

    Does the state have an interest in that matter?

    As an anarchist, I would say the local criminal gang's investigative unit examining damage done to one of their tax slaves should not exist, much less have any interest in the matter.

    If we stipulate for the sake of argument that the government is not nearly as malign as I view it above, their sole interest in the above should be to determine that the person who died did not change their mind about dying before the irrevocable event causing death occurred.

    So, if they were physically capable of pulling the trigger, they should do so rather than having someone else do so, but the other person could purchase the gun and bullets and put it in their hands and coach them on how to aim it and so on, but not pull the trigger.

  • SIV||

    jSTOR owned the scans.

  • Suellington||

    It most certainly should not be if they don't want to press charges over said "theft".

  • robc||

    Distribution of data developed and owned by others without their consent is theft.

    Copyright violation != theft

  • sloopyinca||

    Who the fuck fields a punt at their own 5 yard line?

  • RBS||

    Hahahaha, another Peyton Manning playoff loss.

  • sloopyinca||

    The Manning Face!

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Why would you trust Manning to throw!

  • sloopyinca||

    "Yanda deserves an assist for that play"

    /Dierdorff

    Yeah, by "assist" you mean he illegally pushed a ball carrier from behind. That's supposed to be 5 yards and loss of down.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Exactly what I was thinking.

    The replacement replacement refs strike again!

  • JeremyR||

    I dunno what happened to Dan Dierdorff.

    Never met him, but I used to go to high school with his son, who was a really nice guy. He could have been an arrogant jerk, given he was the song of a very popular football player and a big jock himself (at least in high school), but he'd talk to everyone, even nerds like me.

  • sloopyinca||

    The Manning Face!

    Now we get to see Ray Lewis pray and say God wanted him to win and act all pious. I guess Jacinth Baker and Richard Loller would be shaking their heads if they were still here.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    There's no evidence they would want the state to prosecute, so I don't see why you have a problem.

  • sloopyinca||

    OK, now you're just being a retarded prick. It must be the "Law And Order" part of your libertarian self coming out again.

  • RBS||

    So that's what LAOL stand for.

  • ||

    You don't if you switch to the Niners/Packers game.

  • Sevo||

    Who knows? Maybe Kaep can learn to read the play clock....
    But I have my doubts.

  • ||

    He just needs to run a few more in himself.

  • Sevo||

    Only if he gets the snap off before the play clock ends.
    Damn! It would be really nice to have a QB who can read a clock!

  • ||

    Well, that dropped punt by Green Bay just made things a lot better for him.

  • Sevo||

    Pretty sure relying on dropped punts to win a game isn't a good strategy.

  • ||

    How about relying on Aaron Rodgers throwing an interception?

  • hotsy totsy||

    That means the Broncos advanced further in the playoffs last year with Tebow than this year with Manning. Wonderful.

  • Xenocles||

    Technically they lost in the second round both years.

  • JeremyR||

    True. But at least they won a playoff game with Tebow.

  • ||

    GODDAMMIT. Well, FUCK ART MODELL still.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Hey Elway! Remember when you didn't want to go to Baltimore?

    Baltimore says "BITE ME."

  • ||

    I dunno, maybe you should have paid him $50 million to break the lease on his apartment or something.

  • sloopyinca||

    I'm officially cheering for the Texans to win the AFC now.

    Either that or for Ray Lewis to make it to the Super Bowl and go all opening scene from The Last Boy Scout after intercepting a pass.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Warty, need I remind you that John Elway is not only a draft dodger (NFL draft), but a government appartchik and dirty, rotten shitweasel propagandist?

  • ||

    You don't have to convince me to hate fucking Bucky Horseface, dude. All I'm saying is FUCK ART MODELL.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    When go to the bathroom, don't take a Modell. It might jam the plumbing.

  • Paul.||

    a tireless and talented hacker who poured his energy into issues like network neutrality, copyright reform and information freedom.

    In the end, these two things are incompatible.

    Rather, he was being harassed by the government – the Department of Justice specifically – for his activism in trying to make academic journals and public court records freely available online:

    I wonder if it ever occurred to Swartz that the same institution relentlessly pursuing him is the same institution that desperately wants to implement net neutrality.

    a cat-and-mouse game ensued, culminating in Swartz entering a networking closet on the campus, secretly wiring up an Acer laptop to the network, and leaving it there hidden under a box.

    There's a crime here. How serious? Probably not as serious as whatever the DoJ charged him with causing him to face 35 years in prison.

    This past week, the White House responded to recent trollish petitions about seceding from the union, deporting Piers Morgan, and building a Death Star. Yet it still has not responded to the open access petition.

    Welcome to the Obama Administration, Hacktivists. Bask in all its glory.

  • Sevo||

    "I wonder if it ever occurred to Swartz that the same institution relentlessly pursuing him is the same institution that desperately wants to implement net neutrality."

    Yep. He wanted "free shit" and wouldn't accept that the supposed provider of that "free shit" was exactly denier of that "free shit".
    Again, with no comment about his suicide, he was a utopian, hoping that Top Men could make things right!

  • sloopyinca||

    I found that odd as well.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Not odd at all. Even exceptionally smart people have their blind spots. The mistake that we mere mortals make is that we assume that because a man is brilliant in one field, it must mean he's brilliant in ALL fields. History typically shows this to be untrue.

  • sloopyinca||

    All conversation about what is a crime aside, these have been two incredibly fun football games to watch.

  • RBS||

    I think Dom Capers disagrees.

  • ||

    Watching Green Bay make mistake after mistake, and opening holes for Kaepernick to run through again and again, is fun?

    YOU BET YOUR ASS IT IS

  • sloopyinca||

    Oh, shit! A one-legged man on American Idol. Can an entire TV network jump the shark?

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    I don't know. Are they having more celebrity high diving?

  • sloopyinca||

    Wait, what the fuck is this and how did I miss it?

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    I caught a few minutes on Wed.
    http://www.awfulannouncing.com.....-show.html

  • sloopyinca||

    -“Baywatch” actress Alexandra Paul

    Don't they mean "The virgin Connie Swail?"

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Greg Louganis is going to be on the ABC version as a judge.

  • sloopyinca||

    It's strange they would do a show on diving and not include any soccer players.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Nobody wants to see Maradonna in a speedo.

  • sloopyinca||

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    You just want to punish me for that Mt. Rushmore thing

  • sloopyinca||

    I've only begun to repay you for that mindfuck.

    BTW, what do you expect the games to be like after a mere 7-day training camp? I expect a lot of sloppy play for at least a few weeks.

    On the bright side, a short season bodes well for an older team like the Detroit Red Winds.*

    *The only redeeming thing in a shithole of a state.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Schedule should be out tonight. I'm hearing only intra-conference play, no West vs East.

    Free agents and trading starts in 2 hours. Gonna be a bonanza. The GMs have probably made a lot of trades during the lockout but couldn't release the info until tonight.

    I'm thinking there will be a lot of injuries.

  • sloopyinca||

    I'm thinking there will be a lot of injuries.

    This makes me with Patrick Roy was still in the league.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Jagr is vulnerable in Dallas.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Listen, hotshot. I'm gonna tell you something right now. I don't care for you or for the putrid sludge you're troweling out. But until they change the laws and put you sleaze kings out of business, my job is to help you get back your stench ridden boxes of smut. And since I'll be doing it holding my nose, I'll be doing it with one hand.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    That was in response to sloopy's Dragnet reference above. Flerking indentation or lack thereof.

  • sloopyinca||

    Dabney Coleman's finest moment.

  • ||

    Dabney Coleman's finest moment.

    Nope, that was Dan Ackroyd's lines, sloop.

    Dragnet FAIL!

    Also, don't forget, you're having your pores sucked at 3.-D

  • ||

    Good Morning, Tulpa. Just had to remind you that after you get through polishing your pennies, you get your arse out there and find my magazines and put them back on the stands where they belong.

  • SIV||

    They were trying to build suspense as the "celebrities" went off a 3 meter board.TEN FUCKING FEET.I was doing 1.5s and gainers off a 3 meter board when I was 8. The same off a 10 meter+ platform (bridges/trees/rock ledges) when I was 12.None of it in any sanctioned athletic competition either.

  • sloopyinca||

    Kapernick = Tebow with an arm.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    and tats

  • sloopyinca||

  • RBS||

    I'd say taking to twitter to air your grievances is more questionable, especially when you use such poor grammar.

  • sloopyinca||

    I don't know. That girl in the second pick was big.

  • RBS||

    This is true, but fat chicks need lovin' too.

  • sloopyinca||

    That's what linemen are for, not quarterbacks.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    About equal in that respect. C-Kap never volunteered to go to the Jets.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    More like Alex Smith with better legs and a better arm.

    That being said, all mobile quarterbacks will have to make a decision to follow either the Michael Vick path (Don't discipline yourself to stay in the pocket and deliver the pass; limit yourself to 10 healthy years in the league) or the Steve Young path (Develop into a mobile pocket-passer; win a Super Bowl.)

  • sloopyinca||

    Hey, Vick might still win a Su...

    Hahaha. I couldn't even finish the sentence I was laughing so hard.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    Vick would have actually been a fairly promising back up to RGIII in the Redskins' current offense. (Assuming the Skins try to trade Cousins to a team that would better fit his playing style.) But that was before RGIII's injury; now, I'm not certain Vick wouldn't just destroy the team chemistry in DC.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    Actually, Alex Smith could probably pick up the Redskin's offense with some ease. I hope Smith goes somewhere good. I'm not like a huge fan, but I thought what he was showing under Harbaugh the last two years was what was being undermined by the Singletary staff.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    As awful as the draft class is for QBs this year, there will be mutliple teams interested.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    I am not supportive of intruding on others' property rights, but with the abundance of public funds that go to a lot of the scientific research that goes on in this country, am I the only one who finds Swartz's actions at least a somewhat justifiable reaction against what I would consider to be academic journal welfare? I mean, thank the academic journals for publishing this research, but they do, in fact, receive assistance from the government whenever they publish publicly-funded research.

  • sloopyinca||

    I mean, thank the academic journals for publishing this research, but they do, in fact, receive assistance from the government taxpayers whenever they publish publicly-funded research.

    FIFY!

  • Caleb Turberville||

    I'll clarify that I see this as an especially qualified example where these actions might be justified. Considering the high price of subscribing to these journals, it seems to be an especially corrupt example of government subsidies for an industry that ought to be able to support itself.

  • sloopyinca||

    Agreed. But you didn't need to clarify. I was just being a pedantic ass.

  • SIV||

    I'm probably backsliding but I'm not very respectful of unlimited private property rights to scans and copies of media in the public domain. I shouldn't sell your scans of the works of Issac Newton but if I can make a copy of your copy of a copy ol' Issac isn't going to mind. And especially if there is no chance in Hell I'm going to pay you a buck a page to read them.

  • SIV||

    Here's a torrent of 32 gigs of scans of Papers from Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    NHL SCHEDULE is out

  • General Butt Naked||

    I am so happy right now. My winter has been really shitty without hockey.

    Also, pens play philly first. Hells yes, bring the hate.

  • Almanian.||

    HAHA! PACKERPWND! So far. I don't really care, but enjoying SF's resurgence. I was a fan back in the Gene Washington/John Brodie days, so...

    Fuck you, Packer Nation!

  • Sevo||

    Oh yee of little faith!
    I figured GB to bust SF butt.

  • JeremyR||

    And yet, they couldn't beat the Rams in 10 quarters.

  • Acosmist||

    OK? Rams are pretty good. Did you miss the entire year?

  • SIV||

    In case you missed it:

    Andrew Cuomo wants to limit you to 7.

    Some Blue states limit you to 10.

    The Cosmotarian-in-Chief at Cato wants the Federal Government to limit you to 20 rounds in your "high caliber magazine clips"*

    (*some bitch on CNN called them that this morning)

  • Anonymous Coward||

    high caliber magazine clips

    ???

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    I was confused at first as well.
    I figured out it refers to those cards in magazines that let you get 72 issues for the price of 12.

    Or something.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    I certainly wouldn't have guessed that.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    My Mauser has some of those.

  • Cytotoxic||

    It is disappointing but unsurprising that Reason would want to elevate another internet Trotskyite into some 'hero for freedom'.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    If I squint a little, I can see Aaron Swartz as a man who was screwed over by the system.

    On the other hand, that article on Howard Zinn the other day was bizarre.

  • ||

    Not really, I lost all respect for Gillespie's editing when he practically fellated the corpse of George McGovern.

    Gotta throw some meat (or reasonable meat facsimile substitute) to the Bleeding Heart Pinkotarians as well.

  • Caleb Turberville||

    I think it's easy to imagine that some long-dead liberals would be just as critical of the Obama administration as we are. I don't know, but I'm skeptical of such a position. Remember, what we see with Obama is just the warmed-over uncritical response to the Roosevelt, Kennedy, and Clinton administrations.

  • ||

    I don't believe that. The exhumed remains of Wilson, IMO the ultimate presidential Pinko, as well as Theodore Roosevelt and FDR, and Johnson would all suck His Pestilency's cock harder than Gillespie did Zombie McGovern's (though most of those aformentioned would have to overcome their demonstrable racism first).

    Add in the slew of Commmiepologia articles that have been appearing over the last few months and the position is strengthened.

    And I say this as someone who currently lives in a former Soviet bloc country.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    FDR was a public sector union buster, actually. He would be horrified by SEIU.

  • ||

    FDR was a public sector union buster, actually. He would be horrified by SEIU.

    And FDR confiscated gold. ObamneyCare alone would garner His Pestilency said cock suckage.

    Face it, Tulpa: Pinkotarians love His Pestilency, just like Zinn, Goldman, and their ilk.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Well, they had to confiscate gold in order to devalue the currency back then. Not a problem for BO, when BB can create dollars with the click of a mouse.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    And I say this as someone who currently lives in a former Soviet bloc country.

    Which means you're probably against the US dumping all its advanced military technology and shrinking the military to the point where it would be a fair fight if civilians rebelled.

  • ||

    Actually Tulpa, UKR is now developing a professional army, considering joining both the Customs Union of Russia (for no other reason than Gazprom) and the EU (which is currently unconstitutional under UKR law, it's one or the other) for that very reason. UKR likes Hillary for some reason, but trusts Putin more than His Pestilency.

    They also want to start dumping USD's and strengthen the IAH. USD's are handy to have (the grey and black markets depend on them) but will eventually fall out of favour as reserve currency.

  • ||

    Correction, "UAH" aka Hrvnyas.

  • Cytotoxic||

    I agree with GM. FDR, Wilson, and Johnson were much worse than Obama. And they were the spear of the left of their times.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    I think it's easy to imagine that some long-dead liberals would be just as critical of the Obama administration as we are.

    Only if he had been elected as a republican.

  • Lyle||

    Dude was just a high profile thief.

  • The Longest Cocktail Party||

    It is disappointing but unsurprising that Reason would want to elevate another internet Trotskyite into some 'hero for freedom'.

    Reading Reason is like going to a strip joint, and then finding out you're in a tranny bar.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    The Pittsburgh Penguins know how to apologize to fans.

  • ||

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I ordered Theraflu off the Internet in your honor yesterday, GM.

  • ||

    Good for you. Get well soon so you can be at Peak Obstinacy,-)

    Also, fuck you HTML FAIL...}-(

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I pray that there will not be a peak in whatever I am. Just increase, forever more.

  • sloopyinca||

    I think it's been pointed out here that Peak Retard is a myth, so I think you're safe.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Spasibo, doktor

  • ||

    Pozhalujsta,ty skazitesh' slovo "vrach" mne, da? "Doktor" == "prepodavat'el" (Professor), moi horoshoj drug.-)

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Ah, thanks

  • Ted S.||

    "Skazitesh'"?

    Did you pick up that mutant conjugation at Chernobyl or something? :-P

  • ||

    That one was a legit troll, Theodore, because I knew you (and possibly RPA or Jimbo) would pick up on that one for sure.-D

  • Ted S.||

    You're just making excuses now, Maksim.

    Either that, or you're quite drunk. Nothing wrong with that. I know my spelling gets lousy when I'm drunk.

  • ||

    Twilight zone moment.

    Doc, how are you posting in the future? It's 11:24 EST on the 13th and your time tag says 12:36.

  • ||

    Oops...herpy derp.

    AM

  • Ted S.||

    Isn't it skazat'/govorit', and not skazit'?

  • ||

    Typo. Yes, I wanted "skazat'" as the perfective future tense. Apolgies.-

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Yes My russian is bad, but even google translate didn't get that.

  • Killazontherun||

    Now the Green Bay defense needs to apologize to the country for making Kaepernick look like the greatest quarterback in the history of the NFL with the stats to back it up. I've grown to like the kid, but that was fucking ridiculous.

  • XM||

    This guy could have made a lot of money working for some company (maybe he already did). But he risked 35 years in prison for a cause. Don't know if it's right or wrong, but that's ballsy.

    You hear that, you wannabe OWS revolutionaries?

  • Caleb Turberville||

    Take note kids: Drop your Violence Against Women 1990-2012 and Capitalism: Failure of a Superstition courses and add a few computer programming courses.

  • Archduke Pantsfan||

    Shit.
    This show is worse than Cops

    "Border Security"
    Phony tourists here to work, belligerent visitors smuggling contraband, toys packed with heroin, weapons disguised as cell phones: all are just another day at the office for the Canada Border Services Agency.
    Every day, twenty thousand passengers request entry into Canada by way of Vancouver International Airport (YVR), and many more at land crossings in the Lower Mainland of BC. While most experience the usual uneasiness that comes with passing through immigration and customs, others have more legitimate reasons to feel nervous.
    “Every passenger has a ‘story’...it’s our job to dig deeper for the truth.” - Lori Miller, Border Services Officer.
    Welcome to Border Security - a revealing look at life on the front lines of national security. Follow Canadian border services officers as they intercept suspicious characters and contraband from around the world in an effort to keep us safe, and our health, workforce, and ecosystem secure

    Denying people access into the country!

  • ||

    But...but...I have been told Canuckistan is border friendly. How can this be? Canadia's noted dependable and reliable geniality is world renowned!-)

  • tarran||

    My worst customs experiences have been going into Canada from the U.S.

    Invariably I'm pulled aside, wait for 45 minutes, have a 10 minute hostile interview before they let me go on my way.

    The big thing that seems to upset them is that I'm a U.S. citizen since birth, but was born overseas, in a scaaaary muslim country.

  • ||

    That's ridiculous. Both times when I flew in to Donets'k, it was smooth sailing. No penalty boxes, rape scanners, or TSA goons (though the second time was a little more involved since I had a lot to declare).

    Oh, Tarran did you read my response when you asked me not long ago about what former Commies could teach the USA and how the they view Communism on the whole?

  • tarran||

    Yes I did, thanks!

  • DEG||

    tarran's experience is similar to mine (though I have no ties to Muslim countries).

    Only once have I had an easy time going into Canada.

  • ||

    All things considered, academic journals and court records SHOULD be publicly available since the public actually paid for them.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    Most of the stuff in JSTOR is not directly funded by govt.

    Should everything GE and GM produces be free, too?

  • ||

    Should everything...GM produces be free, too?

    No.-)

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    I meant the GM that stayed in America to help us through these difficult times. Not watercraft-abandoning rodentians.

  • ||

    Not watercraft-abandoning rodentians.

    Was that really necessary?

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    No. But it makes me feel better to lash out at others for perceived disloyalty, quieting my own inner demons.

  • ||

    Dimetapp withdrawal is getting the better of you.

  • ||

    Really inapt example Tulpa, and I see you've used it like ten times already.

    Should GMs blueprints be free? That is more congruent to this case. Making a digital copy of data doesn't require GM to acquire steel, glass, etc, and physically assemble and market them.

  • ||

    Thank you. I didn't feel like indulging his herp.

  • Tulpa (LAOL-PA)||

    How is that inapt? JSTOR's entire business is making journals digitally accessible. Just like GM's entire business is making cars. If you force them to give away access for free, there won't be a JSTOR and it's back to the days of traipsing around the state looking for a uni that has the journal you're looking for (or interlibrary loan, barf).

    Plus NOT ALL RESEARCH IS GOVT FUNDED, which I've also said ten or more times and it goes in one ear and out the other apparently. I guess if DHS buys an ad in Reason, that means that Reason can't charge for their magazines, because it contains something that was paid for by taxpayers.

    Turns out libertarians are just as willing to kill the goose with the golden eggs as the proggies.

  • ||

    I'm not saying that all IP should be free, or making any sort of judgement along those lines, and yes, not all research is gov't funded just as not all GM cars are gov funded.

    Making a digital copy of JSTOR's IP is like copying GM's IP, not like being able to walk into a showroom and drive away a car for free. That is simply a terrible analogy. Also, just because someone puts your paper online doesn't mean JSTOR will never get paid for it ever again.

  • ||

    Regarding, Swartz, Drudge links to the NY Post which contains this lovely little paragraph:

    Swartz was also an avid Internet activist, who pushed to make web files open to the public. He opposed the “Stop Online Piracy Act,” which keeps hackers from swiping web content such as music and movies.

    Kind like writing, "Ron Paul opposed the Patriot Act, which keeps terrorists from murdering our children taking our freedom."

  • Lyle||

    No, that's not the same at all.

  • kbolino||

    Only in degree.

  • Lyle||

    It's shameful to say the government bullied him. He was a thief.

  • Rick Santorum||

    It's shameful to say the government bullied him. He was a thief.

    And a Redditor.

  • Lyle||

    Is that why the government was after him, he was a Redditor?

  • sloopyinca||

    No, they were after him because Fuck You, That's Why.

  • Lyle||

    Smooches! :)

  • ||

    Trying to whitewash his horrendous crimes? Typical cosmotarian, soft on hardcore criminal scum.

  • kbolino||

    And as we all know, theft is a crime worthy of the federal government's attention, and thieves regularly face harsher sentences than murderers.

    You can agree that he committed a crime and still recognize that the prosecution against him was ridiculously egregious.

    That something should have been done does not mean that anything which was done is right.

  • ||

    It's shameful to say the government bullied him. He was a thief.

    And it's even more shameful that the official victims declined to prosecute! How dare they put on airs like that, assuming that their individual decisions should affect the Great Process Of Justice!

    Where oh where did they ever get the idea that their own judgment should count in the matter? We don't care about their views: we care about Justice!

  • Agreenweed||

    Sounds a lot less like a suicide the further down the page you get.

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    I shall call you Semanonbot.

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