Computer underground Digest Fri Mar 21, 2020 Volume 9 : Issue 22 ISSN 1004-042X Editor: Jim Thomas (cudigest@sun.soci.niu.edu) News Editor: Gordon Meyer (gmeyer@sun.soci.niu.edu) Archivist: Brendan Kehoe Shadow Master: Stanton McCandlish Shadow-Archivists: Dan Carosone / Paul Southworth Ralph Sims / Jyrki Kuoppala Ian Dickinson Field Agent Extraordinaire: David Smith Cu Digest Homepage: http://www.soci.niu.edu/~cudigest CONTENTS, #9.22 (Fri, Mar 21, 2020) File 1--SUPREMES: Report From the Protest Lines File 2--SUPREMES: Reports from the Netizen; Netly News File 3--SUPREMES: Pointers to Transcript, More Coverage File 4--Reno v. ACLU SupCt Transcript online File 5--Cu Digest Header Info (unchanged since 13 Dec, 1996) CuD ADMINISTRATIVE, EDITORIAL, AND SUBSCRIPTION INFORMATION APPEARS IN THE CONCLUDING FILE AT THE END OF EACH ISSUE. --------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Wed, 19 Mar 2020 14:07:19 -0800 From: --Todd Lappin-- Subject: File 1--SUPREMES: Report From the Protest Lines THE CDA DISASTER NETWORK March 19, 2020 Keith Glass didn't have a ticket to hear today's oral arguments, but he nevertheless made the trek to the Supreme Court to participate in the anti-CDA demonstrations that took place this morning on the Court steps. Keith's first-hand account of the rally -- and of the pro-CDA folks who also showed up to demonstrate -- gives a great sense of what the scene was like this morning, so I'm passing it along. Hope you enjoy, and many thanks to Keith for his report. --Todd Lappin--> Section Editor WIRED Magazine =========== Date--Wed, 19 Mar 2020 16:18:28 -0500 From--"Keith A. Glass" Subject--Report from the Supreme Court, and our opposition (AKA Nuremberg '97) Greetings and felicitations !! I just got back from the demonstration outside the Supreme Court this morning. It was a REALLY nasty morning in DC: a cold snow-rain combo, temperature hovering around freezing (Naturally, about the time the demonstrations ended around 11:30, it stopped. Go figure. . .). Even so, when I got in line at 6:55 AM, there were over 120 people in front of me. ALL of them seemed to be for the overturning of the CDA. The line ended up at about 250 people, before it got out that as members of the Supreme Court Bar had priority for seating, and there were 75+ of them in THEIR line, that only 10-20 or so people in line would actually get seats for the trial. Everyone else either could take the tour, with three minutes in the Court, or go home. Not too long after that, Glenn Haumann of BiblioBytes and Jonah Seiger of CDT appeared on the scene, and signs showed up soon thereafter. BTW, for those interested, the signs were: "The Internet is not Television" "I'm a Better Parent than Uncle Sam" "The First Amendment Applies to the Internet" With that out of the way, we took our handful of activists (about 10 or so at the time) and a large bunch of High School students who were waiting in line for the Court (about 30-40, in my estimate). For perhaps 45 minutes, we were the only demonstrators there. Favorable reaction from most of the crowd. The "Hey Hey, Ho Ho, the CDA has got to go!!" cheer got a good response as well. We got a LOT of good press in this period, mostly radio and newspapers, but also some local Washington and Baltimore TV, as well as a few Network Cameras. Around 9:30 or so, Pro-CDA demonstrators started to arrive, first from the "Maryland Coalition Against Pornography", and later, from "Enough is Enough", who brought hand-made signs, banners, and a bullhorn. . .more on THEM later. . . The last group which appeared was a small contingient from Concerned Women for America. Both our group and their group demonstrated in peaceful coexistence for perhaps 30 minutes. Then the Other Side started heckling our people (using epithets such as "witch", "devil-worshipper", "porno-kings", "child-molestors" . . . and those are the ones I heard . . . oh yes, and my favorite: "Slaves of Pornography". . . . . ) This was followed by their circle of demonstrators (about 30-40 or so, including a oddly dressed man wearing an over-tunic of what appeared to be photos from a fashion magazine, a broken plastic step-stool with the remains of some sort of printed circuit card glued to it as a chest-plate, a styrofoam set of wings on his back, and brandishing a toy bow and arrow. I **STILL** don't get it. . . .) starting to push ours back, and incidentally, closer to the cameras that were setting up for the after-hearing Press Conference. . . And their chant of "Children Don't Need This Stuff Enough is Enough !!". . . for hours and hours, and with the help of the bullhorn, they were drowning us out. They obviously didn't want anyone to hear OUR message. No surprise, that. . . About this time, I took a short break, and chatted with a few of the Supreme Court Police. The uniform opinion: The Other Side was worse than even the Abortion Protesters. And THEN, it came to me. Why they felt familiar. It was the Nuremberg Rally, 1997 edition. We anti-CDA activists were the forces of darkness, an evil group of soul-starved porno-fiends. We were the Enemy, not just the Opponent. . . In a relatively short time, you'll know how the Hearing went, and in July we'll learn the decision of the Supreme Court. But in the meantime, this ends the report from the frontlines. . . . **This article is copyright 1997, Keith A. Glass Permission is granted to reproduce this article in full or in part, provided that credit is given and you forward me a copy of what you did with it. . . ** +--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+ This transmission was brought to you by.... THE CDA DISASTER NETWORK The CDA Disaster Network is a moderated distribution list providing up-to-the-minute bulletins and background on efforts to overturn the Communications Decency Act. To SUBSCRIBE, send email to with "subscribe cda-bulletin" in the message body. To UNSUBSCRIBE, send email to with "unsubscribe cda-bulletin" in the message body. ------------------------------ Date: Wed, 19 Mar 2020 16:27:21 -0800 From: --Todd Lappin-- Subject: File 2--SUPREMES: Reports from the Netizen; Netly News THE CDA DISASTER NETWORK March 19, 2020 Two final -- and authoritative -- reports from today's Supreme Court hearing: In the first, John Heilemann of The Netizen argues that "although there are few more treacherous occupations than reading the court's tea leaves, the behavior of the justices hinted strongly that the CDA is dead meat." Next, Declan McCullagh and Noah Robischon from the Netly News describe how "U.S. Supreme Court justices pummeled government proponents of the Communications Decency Act" and give some hint as to how the CDA's supporters in Congress plan to respond after the Court issues its ruling during the summer. Read on for all the details... --Todd Lappin--> Section Editor WIRED Magazine ------------------------------------ The Netizen: http://www.netizen.com Net Decency Law Looks Like Dead Meat by John Heilemann 2:13pm 19.Mar.97.PST In a lively, fractious, sometimes-funny 70-minute session, the US Supreme Court on Wednesday heard arguments in the case of the Communications Decency Act, aka Reno v. ACLU. The case, which will decide the constitutionality of the year-old (but never enforced) federal ban on online indecency, marks the first time the court has been asked to rule on the question of free speech in cyberspace. And although there are few more treacherous occupations than reading the court's tea leaves, the behavior of the justices hinted strongly that the CDA is dead meat. Arguing the case for the government, Deputy Solicitor General Seth Waxman had his hands full. Waxman spoke first, and was subjected to a steady barrage of plainly skeptical questions from Justices Sandra Day O'Connor, Steven Breyer, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, David Souter, Anthony Kennedy, and John Paul Stevens. In a sharp tone of voice, O'Connor suggested that, considering the nature of the Net, the CDA's use of the adverb "knowingly" - as in, to "knowingly" transmit indecent material to minors - was "virtually worthless." Breyer expressed, again and again, his concerns that the CDA would turn teenagers who use the Net to talk about their sexual experiences into federal felons. ("You mean there's not a high school student exception?" cracked Justice Antonin Scalia.) Kennedy asked Waxman whether he thought it would be permissible to ban adults from smutty talk in public parks just because kids might overhear them - a question that led to a colloquy in which Waxman claimed, incredibly, that the Net was not a "public forum." And when Souter's probing about whether parents could be imprisoned for letting their kids look at racy stuff online led Waxman to claim that parents weren't the CDA's real targets, Souter accused the government's lawyer of "grabbing exceptions out of thin air." Bruce Ennis, the lawyer for the anti-CDA forces, had his share of tough questions, too - only almost all of them came from Chief Justice William Rehnquist and Scalia. As ever, the latter was particularly nettlesome: sharp, acerbic, and terribly clever. When Ennis noted that screening by age was only technologically possible in one corner of cyberspace - the Web - Scalia asked what was wrong with asking speakers who want to be naughty to do it there. When Ennis said that even on the Web the cost of such screening was "prohibitively expensive," Scalia pointed out that the definition of "prohibitive" depends on the goal you're trying to achieve. And, as if he were laying the groundwork for future battles, Scalia repeatedly argued that with the rapid pace of change - "I throw away my computer every five years," he said - whatever is technologically impossible or prohibitively expensive today might not be that way for long. "Isn't it possible that this statute is unconstitutional today ... but won't be unconstitutional two weeks from now?" Scalia asked. But while Scalia and Rehnquist tag-teamed Ennis, the rest of the justices asked him few questions, and the questions they did ask were of a much friendlier tenor than had been the case with Waxman. The court will decide the case and announce its decision - it can throw out the entire CDA or tailor a narrower ruling that will leave pieces intact - by the end of its term early this summer. Before Wednesday's arguments, the question of just how Net-savvy the justices were had been the subject of much speculation, little of it kind. Chris Hansen of the ACLU, who was Ennis's co-counsel, made only one prediction going into the arguments: that there would be no questions about what he called "cgi script," a reference to the ubiquitous technology on the Web that can be used to screen users by age. But, amazingly, cgi scripting was the subject of the first question of the day, from O'Connor, who wanted to know the precise percentage of Web sites actually are equipped to use it. Indeed, though there was the occasional moment of technological confusion, most of the justices seemed fairly switched on - if not regarding the details, then at least regarding the big picture of what the Net is all about. Breyer, in particular, drew an analogy between the Net and the telephone system; even Scalia went on at length about how the court was in uncharted territory. And the very fact that so many of the justices took active part in the discussion - all of them, actually, except for Justice Clarence Thomas, who sat through much of the proceeding with his head resting on his hand, stifling yawns - was a sign that the court recognized the stakes of the case before it. In the closing minutes of his argument, Ennis was cruising. Compared with Waxman, he had been fairly successful at getting all his arguments on the table; even after dodging the ink pellets flicked by the Frankenstein and Don Corleone of archconservative jurisprudence, Ennis found time to pick up on Breyer's telephone analogy, and to expand on the parents-in-the-slammer hypothetical that Souter had put to Waxman. At least three times he was able to state his central claim: that, in the guise of protecting children, the CDA operates as a ban on adult speech that is constitutionally protected. After Ennis finished, Waxman rose to give his rebuttal - using the time he had saved from his first go-round. He had five points to make. Rehnquist told him he had one minute. In the middle of his second point, Souter interrupted him, and in the middle of his response to Souter, Rehnquist cut him off and brought the show to a close. It was that kind of day for the government. ### ------------------------------------------------------------ The Netly News Network http://cgi.pathfinder.com/netly/editorial/0,1012,744,00.html @The Supreme Court March 19, 2020 By Declan McCullagh (declan@well.com) Noah Robischon (noah@pathfinder.com) U.S. Supreme Court justices pummeled government proponents of the Communications Decency Act this morning during a review of the law that will set new standards for free speech in the 21st century. The notorious CDA, reviled throughout cyberspace since the day it was signed by President Clinton in February 1996, would criminalize the ill-defined category of "indecent" communications on the Net. A Philadelphia federal court struck down the law a year ago. Justice Antonin Scalia called the lawsuit, brought by the American Civil Liberties Union against Attorney General Janet Reno, "a distinctive form of First Amendment argument unlike others" because it covers an uncharted and rapidly developing communications medium. "That's a new case for us," he said. Deputy Solicitor General Seth Waxman argued that the CDA merely established boundaries on the Net and made it harder for pornographic material to fall into the hands of minors. He likened the law to a cyber-zoning ordinance; without it, he said, the Internet "threatens to give every child a free pass to get into every adult movie theater or bookstore in the country." But less than a minute after Waxman started, the justices impatiently plowed into his presentation. Justice Stephen Breyer demanded: "Suppose a group of high school students decides to talk over the Internet and they want to talk about their sexual experiences. I mean, that's been known to happen in high school." Would they "be guilty of a federal crime?" Justice Antonin Scalia cut in, joking: "There's no high school student exemption?" "You might find it in the legislative history, but I do not," a chagrined Waxman replied. For much of the 70-minute hearing, the discussion swirled around the question of how netizens could comply with the CDA. Waxman claimed that the act includes a battery of ways to protect a person from prosecution -- visitors to "indecent" web sites would be required to provide credit-card numbers, for instance. But Justice Sandra Day O'Connor was unmoved. "How does that fit in with the use of web sites by noncommercial users, libraries?" she asked. Justice David Souter wondered if the portions of the act banning the "display" of indecent materials would imprison parents. "I take it a parent who allows his computer to be used by a child viewing indecent material, that parent would go to prison," he said. When Waxman demurred, Scalia took up the chase. "No... One of those offenses is a display offense," he pointed out. Chastened, Waxman replied, "I see your point." Bruce Ennis, arguing on behalf of the ACLU and American Library Association coalitions, contended that the CDA bans speech, even for adults; is not as effective as blocking software; and is unconstitutionally vague. Justice Scalia, who noted that he uses a computer, pointed out that technology is rapidly changing. "So much of your argument is based on what's currently available," he said to Ennis. "This technology is changing so quickly. Is it possible that this statute is unconstitutional now but could be [constitutional] in four or five years?" Ennis replied: "Not as it's written." During a subsequent press conference, Ennis added that indeed, the technology is changing, and is giving parents more control over what their children do and see online. "Precisely because the technology is changing, the government should not be trying to enforce this law," he said. The ACLU attorneys who joined Ennis were grinning: the justices appeared to understand the nature of communications online, noted that teens have rights, and focused on free speech, not porn. After the hearing, the anti-CDA protestors who had braved a chill rain to chant "Hey-ho, the CDA has got to go!" were displaced by a larger, bullhorn-wielding group of anti-porn advocates. One sign demanded, "Don't sacrifice my child on the altar of the First Amendment." One of the most vocal protestors was 19-year-old Berkeley student Kenritsu Yamamoto, who happened to be dressed as a Net cupid, complete with angel wings and a circuit board breastplate. He was acting in the Pure Love Alliance's skit illustrating how pornography and "Net abduction" harms children. In the skit, Yamamoto accidentally kills a small child to demonstrate the dangers of a world without the CDA. "If a small child buys porn at a 7-11, then the store can be held accountable," said Yamamoto. "But on the Net, there is no accountability." A few steps away, Donna Rice Hughes, Enough Is Enough's communications director, was explaining why she thought the CDA should be upheld. "Without the CDA, Larry Flynt can make his teasers and centerfolds available to kids on the Internet," she said. Across from Hughes stood Bruce Taylor, the lawyer who argued against Flynt in the Supreme Court more than a decade ago. "The technology is advancing so well that the court is going to see that people can use this stuff without violating the law," he said. If the Supreme Court disagrees and strikes down the CDA, some members of Congress have pledged to try again. Netly cornered Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), a stauch supporter of the CDA, in the basement of the Capitol after the argument. What would he do? "How to do this I don't know, but our objective hasn't changed," he replied. "Some way, somehow, we will have to find a constitutional way of doing this for kids, protecting them from porn the way we did for printed material." Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Virginia) says he hopes the high court "will give the Congress some very clear guidance." But any Congressional tinkering will come after the Supreme Court decides. A ruling is expected in early July. [McCullagh is one of the plaintiffs in the lawsuit challenging the CDA.] +--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+ This transmission was brought to you by.... THE CDA DISASTER NETWORK The CDA Disaster Network is a moderated distribution list providing up-to-the-minute bulletins and background on efforts to overturn the Communications Decency Act. To SUBSCRIBE, send email to with "subscribe cda-bulletin" in the message body. To UNSUBSCRIBE, send email to with "unsubscribe cda-bulletin" in the message body. ------------------------------ Date: Thu, 20 Mar 2020 11:33:51 -0800 From: --Todd Lappin-- Subject: File 3--SUPREMES: Pointers to Transcript, More Coverage THE CDA DISASTER NETWORK March 20, 2020 It's the morning after, so I thought I'd pass along some handy pointers to more information about yesterday's Supreme Court arguments -- including a transcript of the session, and interesting press coverage in today's Washington Post and New York Times. Hope you enjoy, --Todd Lappin--> Section Editor WIRED Magazine -------------------------------------------------- TRANSCRIPT OF THE ARGUMENT: It's not quite the same as having been there, but nevertheless... the ACLU has published a full transcript of yesterday's Supreme Court arguments on their Website. The document is big -- 28 pages when I printed it out -- but its a fascinating read. The transcript is available at http://www.aclu.org/issues/cyber/trial/sctran.html THE WASHINGTON POST: In today's Washington Post, Joan Biskupic and John Schwartz write: "While the justices' comments may not reflect where they will end up on this potentially landmark case, Justice Antonin Scalia and Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist seemed most in favor of the law. Justices O'Connor and Anthony M. Kennedy were also sympathetic, but less so, and both of these usual swing justices raised free speech concerns. "Showing the greatest support for the challengers were Breyer and Justices David H. Souter and Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Justice John Paul Stevens, who wrote a 1978 opinion allowing government to limit indecency on the radio but who has generally liberal tendencies, was hard to read. Justice Clarence Thomas did not ask any questions. Full story at: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/longterm/supcourt/supcourt.htm THE NEW YORK TIMES: Linda Greenhouse covered the CDA arguments for the Times. She writes: "The lawyers who argued Wednesday are among the most highly regarded of Supreme Court advocates, and the session was nuanced and fast moving. The justices added 10 minutes to the standard hour as a concession to the importance and complexity of the case. "Neither lawyer had a particularly easy time. Expressing concerns about both positions, the justices appeared less interested in constitutional theory than in learning about the available technology by which those who post material on the Internet and those who receive it on their computer screens can filter or mark the portions not suitable for children. Full story at: http://www.nytimes.com/library/cyber/week/032097decency.html NOTE: Free registration is required to access the NY Times site. ### +--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+--+ This transmission was brought to you by.... THE CDA DISASTER NETWORK The CDA Disaster Network is a moderated distribution list providing up-to-the-minute bulletins and background on efforts to overturn the Communications Decency Act. To SUBSCRIBE, send email to with "subscribe cda-bulletin" in the message body. To UNSUBSCRIBE, send email to with "unsubscribe cda-bulletin" in the message body. ------------------------------ Date: Wed, 19 Mar 2020 19:35:45 -0500 (EST) From: Lisa Kamm Subject: File 4--Reno v. ACLU SupCt Transcript online ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ACLU Cyber-Liberties Update Wednesday, March 19, 2020 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Transcript of Reno v. ACLU Oral Arguments Online Today at ACLU's Freedom Network Demonstrating the power of the Internet, the American Civil Liberties Union today posted online the transcript of the oral arguments in Reno v. ACLU only hours after the questioning ended. Reno v. ACLU challenges censorship provisions of the Communications Decency Act aimed at protecting minors by criminalizing so-called "indecency" on the Internet. The government appealed the case to the Supreme Court after a federal three-judge panel ruled unanimously last June that the law unconstitutionally restricts free speech. The transcript is available at http://www.aclu.org/issues/cyber/trial/sctran.html In a news conference immediately following the oral arguments, ACLU lawyers said they were "encouraged" by the tenor of the questioning from the Justices. "This case presents the Court with its first opportunity to consider how traditional free speech principles should be applied to the Internet," said Steven Shapiro, ACLU Legal Director. "It is only fitting that we harness the power of cyberspace to further educate the public about what is at stake here." The ACLU news conference was also cybercast live via Real Audio. The audio of the event is available on the web at http://www.aclu.org/issues/cyber/trial/appeal.html The ACLU is also offering a special Reno v. ACLU "GIF" - a computer-animated image - that web publishers can post on their home pages for instant access to the transcripts and other information about the case. A change in the image will alert viewers the instant the Court releases its decision, which is expected by July. Details are at http://www.aclu.org/issues/cyber/trial/appeal.html ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ACLU Cyber-Liberties Update Editor: Lisa Kamm (kamml@aclu.org) American Civil Liberties Union National Office 132 West 43rd Street New York, New York 10036 To subscribe to the ACLU Cyber-Liberties Update, send a message to majordomo@aclu.org with "subscribe Cyber-Liberties" in the body of your message. To terminate your subscription, send a message to majordomo@aclu.org with "unsubscribe Cyber-Liberties" in the body. The Cyber-Liberties Update is archived at http://www.aclu.org/issues/cyber/updates.html ------------------------------ Date: Thu, 15 Dec 2020 22:51:01 CST From: CuD Moderators Subject: File 5--Cu Digest Header Info (unchanged since 13 Dec, 1996) Cu-Digest is a weekly electronic journal/newsletter. Subscriptions are available at no cost electronically. 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