EFF in the News
The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a civil liberties group, claims such a bill would "break the Internet," while Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt says it sets "a disastrous precedent" for freedom of speech.
The EFF, in collaboration with the Tor Project, launched the official 1.0 version of HTTPS Everywhere tool on Aug. 4, just past a year after the first beta version was released in June 2010. According to EFF's blog post, the extension will help secure Internet browsing by encrypting connections to more than 1,000 Web sites.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation countered, saying, “The problem with the civility argument is that it doesn’t tell the whole story.”
We visit Ferrari, take over Times Square, check out the Grid 10, and talk patents with the EFF
The EFF said the legal tactic amounted to an abuse of the legal system.
'The intent of these lawsuits is to get peoples' identifying information and attempt to extort settlements out of them,' said Corynne McSherry, EFF's intellectual property director.
"Will the criminal case help them? Absolutely," says Hanni Fakhoury, a staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation who's a former federal public defender. "They're going to learn a lot more about what happened."
But critics, led by the San Francisco-based Electronic Frontier Foundation, say the industry is abusing the court system by casting a wide net that ends with menacing letters to embarrassed targets who'd rather cut a check than fight back and be identified in court as someone who may have downloaded porn.
Well, certainly now that the BART officials have tipped their hand and shown a willingness to engage in this kind of censorship, protesters can come prepared with ways to circumvent it, but at the time it simply hadn’t occurred to anybody that they would do that.
The one thing that really caught my attention was in response to a question about PROTECT IP asked by EFF lawyer Michael Barclay. Goodlatte noted, correctly, that the current PROTECT IP bill being discussed is the one in the Senate, and that the House has yet to introduce its version, but will in the next few weeks.
Jillian York: 'While these things did happen on very different scales, the intent was the same, to shut down speech in light of protests. We are looking at this as precedent, as a slippery slope. And I, I do fear that this is something we're going to be seeing a lot more often.'