Computer underground Digest Thu Feb 9, 1995 Volume 7 : Issue 11 ISSN 1004-042X Editors: Ji

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Computer underground Digest Thu Feb 9, 1995 Volume 7 : Issue 11 ISSN 1004-042X Editors: Jim Thomas and Gordon Meyer (TK0JUT2@NIU.BITNET) Archivist: Brendan Kehoe Retiring Shadow Archivist: Stanton McCandlish Shadow-Archivists: Dan Carosone / Paul Southworth Ralph Sims / Jyrki Kuoppala Ian Dickinson Copy Icecreamer: B. Robbins CONTENTS, #7.11 (Thu, Feb 9, 1995) File 1--Intro to Jim Warren Special Issue File 2--GovAccess.098v2: ACTION NEEDED ASAP! re public access to fed rcds File 3--GovAccess.097: Attn!; Econ Bull; MuniNet; Nat'l Press Contacts File 4--GovAccess.096: VA *Action*; IRS Eyes; Congr.FTP; WV; NY; Privy File 5--Cu Digest Header Information (unchanged since 25 Nov 1994) CuD ADMINISTRATIVE, EDITORIAL, AND SUBSCRIPTION INFORMATION APPEARS IN THE CONCLUDING FILE AT THE END OF EACH ISSUE. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 9 Feb 1995 22:51:19 CST From: CuD Moderators Subject: File 1--Intro to Jim Warren Special Issue Jim Warren's contributions to cyberspace are well known to old-timers. Newcomers, however, might not be aware that he is probably the person most singularly responsible for pushing state and federal government toward Net accessibility, for keeping us all abreast of critical government-access issues, and for generally serving as a conduit for timely news and information about legislation and policy issues of cyber-relevance. Because of time and space, we can't always run as much of Jim's work as we'd like. But, with an occasional special issue, we can share is works with both new-comers and his long-time fans. ------------------------------ Date: Wed, 8 Feb 1995 16:18:26 -0800 From: Jim Warren Subject: File 2--GovAccess.098v2: ACTION NEEDED ASAP! re public access to fed rc ds This needs action THIS WEEK! [Apologies if you who are on the regular GovAccess list receive more than one copy of this. It's HIGHLY TIME-SENSITIVE. I sent it yesterday morning to my new automated listserv but apparently it's bottled-up somewhere. So, I am resending it via my old, semi-manual GovAccess distribution system.] This concerns an information-supressing amendment that is being jambed through Congress *FAST* - probably THIS WEEK - by powerful lobbyists who have spent a fortune on this and apparently don't *want* any careful public deliberative process, much less a fair opportunity for public input. It not only voids public access to federal court records in their modern form; it severely endangers the now-potent federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). This is longer than usual about a single topic because it is an EMERGENCY ACTION ALERT and needs to provide adequate information on which to base an informed decision, and the contact-information needed for *immediate* effective action. &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& Tue, 7 Feb 1995 10:07:32 -0500 From: xxxxx@clark.net [blanked his id because I didn't have time to get his permission to repost with his identity --jim] Jim, read the whole post and take a special look at the 'graph below: >Indeed, if Oliver North had used >a private contractor for the White House email system, those >records would appear to be off limits to both FOIA and a >government supeana. Moreover, the provison would apply even in >cases where the firm did not have a copyright or any other >protectable intellectually property right, a huge change in >federal law. > I wouldn't be surprised if White House aides were already using a private system for some sensitive records. Just a hunch. At any rate you can bet that officials from both parties won't shy away from taking advantage of this loophole if it opens up. Thanks to telnet, ftp and whatnot, of course, the contractor's computers could be anywhere. For all I know, maybe the contractor could be outside the country (I haven't any idea what the procurement regs would say on this). I'd love to find out about Gingrich's own possible involvement in the bill. It mocks everything he's said about the need for electronic democracy. Having fought some pretty nasty FOIA battles in my time, I feel a little too much deju vu. Be interesting to see what the White House policy is on this stuff. I won't get my hopes up. This could well be a bipartisan effort against the citizenry. >Date: Tue, 7 Feb 1995 05:38:23 -0500 >Errors-To: tap-info-owner@essential.org >Originator: tap-info@essential.org >From: James Love >Subject--Help! West Publishing seeks broad change in FOIA > >TAXPAYER ASSETS PROJECT - INFORMATION POLICY NOTE >CROWN JEWELS CAMPAIGN - Juris, Legal Information >February 7, 1995 > >We need help from everyone!!!!!!!! Please distribute this >widely. jamie love (love@tap.org, 610/658-0880 or 202/387-8030) > >- Hearings set for today (Tuesday February 7) on bill > containing special interest provision for West Publishing. > Hearings will be held before the subcommittee on "Regulatory > Affairs." > >- House republicans have slated quick action on the bill. > Subcommittee Mark-up is set for thursday and full committee > mark-up is set for friday. (Telephone and Fax numbers of > committee members given below) > >- House republicans introduce legislation with a section > requested by West Publishing that will provide sweeping > changes in federal freedom of information act, and prevent > federal agencies from creating a public database that use > the West Publishing page numbers to reference case law. > >- The "West Provision" would also end its lawsuit with Tax > Analyst, a Virginia publisher, who is seeking access to the > Department of Justice JURIS database of court decisions in > order to put the information into the public domain. Tax > Analysts alleges the JURIS database of court decisions are > subject to FOIA and not protected by copyright. A victory > by Tax Analysts in this case will lead to a public domain > database of federal court decisions. > >- The West Provision in the legislation would extend far > beyond West Publishing's struggle to maintain its grip on > the market for legal information. It would exclude all > contractor generated records from the federal Freedom of > Information Act. Examples of databases that would be > affected by provision would be the SEC's EDGAR database and > the Department of Education ERIC database. > >- Help needed in removing this special interest provision. > Telephone and fax numbers for the Subcommittee on Regulatory > Affairs are given below. > >>From best we can determine, the so called "Paperwork Reduction >Act" bill was introduced late yesterday or will be introduced >early today. We do not have a bill number yet. There will be a >hearing on today (Tuesday February 7) before the "Subcommittee on >National Economic Growth, Natural Resources, and Regulatory >Affairs," more commonly referred to as the subcommittee on >"Regulatory Affairs." Subcommittee Mark-up is set for thursday >and full committee (the apparently misnamed Committee on >Government Reform and Oversight) mark-up is set for friday. > >A provision in this bill [Section 3518 (f) of the "Chairman's >Mark"] would do the following. > > If any person "adds value" to public information, the > federal government would not have "any right to obtain, > collect, acquire, disseminate, use or convert," the > data, database or information product, or "any method > used by the person to identify such resulting data, > databases or information product," except "under terms > that are expressly agreed to by such person." > >This provision is being sold as a simple restatement of the law, >but that is a far from true (or more bluntly, a lie). The >provision in the bill is so broad that it covers all contractor >performed work on behalf of agencies, and effectively exempts >contractor generated records from the federal Freedom of >Information Act (FOIA). For example, since LEXIS "adds value" to >the EDGAR database by taking the incomming filings from the >government and putting them in a database, even if the government >had a copy of the database, it could not dissmeinate the records >without the consent of LEXIS. Likewise, many databases, such as >the Department of Education ERIC database, are largely put >together by private contactors. Indeed, if Oliver North had used >a private contractor for the White House email system, those >records would appear to be off limits to both FOIA and a >government supeana. Moreover, the provison would apply even in >cases where the firm did not have a copyright or any other >protectable intellectually property right, a huge change in >federal law. > >The provision would specifically apply to an active federal >lawsuit between West Publishing and Tax Analysts, over the >Department of Justice JURIS database. West Publishing was a >contractor on JURIS, an online system run by the Department of >Justice, which contains several decades of federal court >decisions. West Publishing is trying to prevent Tax Analysts >from obtaining copies of court decisions contained in the >government's JURIS database. Tax Analyst believes the records >are subject to FOIA, and not protected by copyright. If Tax >Analysts (fmi, Tom Field, 703/533-4400 or Eleanor Lewis 301/652- >3453) wins the law suit, which has been very expensive, it plans >to put the data into the public domain, creating a public >database of federal court decisions -- something that West >Publishing is fighting against. Moreover, the West assertion of >its copyright of legal citations is being challenged in federal >court in New York by Hyperlaw, a small CD-ROM publisher (fmi, >Alan Sugarman, President, 212/877-1371, sugarman@panix.com). If >Sugarman wins his case, the West provision would prevent the >Department of Justice from using the West citations in a public >database. > > > WHAT CAN YOU DO? > >We are asking people to send a brief message by fax the members >to the full committee, asking Congress to delete the special >interest provison for West Publishing. > > > Committee on Government Reform and Oversight > 104th Congress > >** = Subcommittee on National Economic Growth, Natural Resources, > > and Regulatory Affairs > >REPUBLICAN > >William Clinger, Jr. (PA) 225-5121 225-4681 >Benjamin Gilman, (NY) 225-3776 225-2541 >Dan Burton, (IA) 225-2276 225-0016 >Constance Morella, (MD) 225-5341 225-1389 >Christopher Shays, (CO) 225-5541 225-9629 >Steven Schiff, (NM) 225-6316 225-4975 >Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, (FL) 225-3931 225-5620 >William Zeliff, Jr. (NH) 225-5456 225-4370 >John McHugh, (NY) ** 225-4611 226-0621 >Stephen Horn, (CA) 225-6676 226-1012 >John Mica, (FL) 225-4035 226-0821 >Peter Blute, (MA) 225-6101 225-2217 >Thomas Davis, (VA) 225-1492 225-3071 >David McIntosh, (IA) 225-3021 225-3382 >Jon Fox, (PA) ** 225-6111 225-3155 >Randy Tate, (WA) ** 225-8901 225-3484 >Dick Chrysler, (MI) 225-4872 225-3034 >Gil Gutknecht, (MN) ** 225-2472 225-3246 >Mark Souder, (IA) 225-4436 225-3479 >William Martini, (NJ) 225-5751 225-3372 >Joe Scarborough, (FL) ** 225-4136 225-3414 >John Shadegg, (AZ) ** 225-3361 225-3462 >Michael Flanagan, (IL) 225-4061 225-3128 >Charles Bass, (NH) 225-5206 225-2946 >Steve LaTourette, (OH) 225-5731 225-3307 >Mark Sanford, (SC) 225-3176 225-3407 >Robert Ehrlich, Jr. (MD) ** 225-3061 225-3094 > >DEMOCRAT > >Cardiss Collins, (IL) 225-5006 225-8396 >Henry Waxman, (CA) ** 225-3976 225-4099 >Tom Lantos, (CA) 225-3531 225-7900 >Robert Wise, Jr. (WV) 225-2711 225-7856 >Major Owens, (NY) 225-6231 226-0112 >Edolphus Towns, (NY) 225-5936 225-1018 >John Spratt, Jr. (SC) ** 225-5501 225-0464 >Louise Slaughter, (NY) ** 225-3615 225-7822 >Paul Kanjorski, (PA) ** 225-6511 225-0764 >Gary Condit, (CA) ** 225-6131 225-0819 >Collin Peterson, (MN) ** 225-2165 225-1593 >Karen Thurman, (FL) 225-1002 226-0329 >Carolyn Maloney, (NY) 225-7944 225-4709 >Thomas Barrett, (WI) 225-3571 225-2185 >Gene Taylor, (MI) 225-5772 225-7074 >Barbara Rose Collins, (MI) 225-2261 225-6645 >Eleanor Holmes Norton, (DC) 225-8050 225-3002 >James P. Moran, (VA) 225-4376 225-0017 >Gene Green, (TX) 225-1688 225-9903 >Carrie Meek, (FL) 225-4506 226-0777 >Frank Mascara, (PA) 225-4665 225-3377 >Chaka Fattah, (PA) 225-4001 225-6466 > >INDEPENDENT >Bernard Sanders, (VT) 225-4115 225-6790 > > >Key Administration Officials: > >OMB > >Sally Katzen voice: 202/395-4852 > sally.katzen@eop.sprint.com > >Bruce McConnell voice: 202/395-3785 > bruce.mcconnell@eop.sprint.com > >Department of Justice > >Paul Friedman voice: 202/514-1721 > friedman@justice.doj.gov > > >--------------------------------------------------------------------- >TAP-INFO is an Internet Distribution List provided by the Taxpayer >Assets Project (TAP). TAP was founded by Ralph Nader to monitor the >management of government property, including information systems and >data, government funded R&D, spectrum allocation and other government >assets. TAP-INFO reports on TAP activities relating to federal >information policy. tap-info is archived at ftp and gopher at >essential.org and cpsr.org. > >Subscription requests to tap-info to listproc@tap.org with >the message: subscribe tap-info your name >--------------------------------------------------------------------- >Taxpayer Assets Project; P.O. Box 19367, Washington, DC 20036 >v. 202/387-8030; f. 202/234-5176; internet: tap@tap.org >--------------------------------------------------------------------- ------------------------------ Date: Mon, 6 Feb 1995 20:20:13 -0800 From: Jim Warren Subject: File 3--GovAccess.097: Attn!; Econ Bull; MuniNet; Nat'l Press Contacts GovAccess About to Move to an Automated Listserv [details real soon now] I am about to switch GovAccess from my current, masochistic, semi-manual operation, to a standard-style, automated listserv - as soon as I finish updating its addressee lists. This should be completed within a day or two. At that time, I will announce details in the next GovAccess, sent this ol' fashioned way, and send a test-message to the new listserv. If it and I survive the transition, the changeover will be complete by mid-week. --jim &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& First You Have to Get Their Attention ... [IT MIGHT BE USEFUL TO CIRCULATE THIS WIDELY!] As of mid-January, ten of the nation's 100 Senators and about half of the U.S. Representatives had public email addresses. But it's *widely* known that many local, state and federal elected officials and their staff routinely ignore or functionally-disregard communications that come from anyone other than (a) people in their districts, (b) "important" people and (c) lobbyists and donors, anywhere. Email provides an interesting option: 1. Your email addr often gives little indication of where you are located - especially on those systems that have national and global users. 2. Your eaddr rarely gives any indication of whether you are "important" - leaving the possibility open that you *may* have numerous contacts in an elected representative's district ... all the more possible, once politicians begin to realize that the Internet provides us with free, fast global broadcasting. So - if you don't help 'em identify how inconsequential you are, and don't tell 'em that you live somewhere far-distant from their voters ... then they may be more-likely to consider your comments as *possibly* being from one of their constituents, and *possibly* from someone who can influence voters in their district. Their attention to your comments is appropriate - regardless of where in the nation you live - since their votes usually impact *all* citizens, pervasively. (This - and the issues of freedom of expression - are also worth keeping in mind, when we are tempted to seek prohibitions against out-of-district political donations and "outsider" campaign assistance.) --jim &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& Enlightening Tidbits About Washington's "Legislative English" Date: Mon, 30 Jan 95 08:15:31 PST From: "John Broughton" [responding to some of my naive/uninformed questions re debt & deficit -j] "Authorizes" has a very specific (and different) meaning for the federal government (the normal sequence of events is authorize, appropriate, commit, obligate, expend; the deficit is measured at the "obligate" point). [I *trust* this source - Masters in Public Policy, Doctoral Fellow at the US GAO, primary author of a GAO report, 20 yerars in federal work, now with Internal Audit Services at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory. --jim] &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& Department of Commerce Economic Bulletin Board Has Public Access From: d.wiesner@genie.geis.com Date: Mon, 30 Jan 95 07:17:00 UTC Economic Bulletin Board: Department of Commerce system provides access to thousands of data files, more than 700 of them updated daily. Includes information about current economic conditions, economic indicators, employment, foreign trade, monetary matters and more in 20 general subject areas. Path: telnet ebb.stat- usa.gov / userid:guest (2/94). Path: gopher gopher.lib.umich.edu / social sciences resources / economics (2/94). Path: telnet una.hh.lib.umich.edu / login:gopher / social sciences resources / economics (2/94). &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& MuniNet - FinanceNet's List for City Managers Mon, 30 Jan 1995 17:08:27 CST From: brich@nsf.gov FinanceNet has recently added a new public listserv mailing list, coordinated by the International Institute of Municipal Clerks, titled "MuniNet". This is a distribution and discussion list for issues relating to financial accountability and stewardship of municipalities, towns and townships within larger geopolitical jurisdictions. As in the "state-county" list, documents and discussions will broadly relate to accounting matters, bonds, revenues and taxation, budgets, systems, fees, licenses, audits, controls, payroll, and all other issues of interest to clerks, and other local gov't financial management staff and taxpayers. This list will also provide a communications medium for the membership and agenda issues for the International Institute of Municipal Clerks, and other local gov't professional organizations. To subscribe to the MuniNet list, send the email message (no subject necessary) to listproc@financenet.gov with the following in the BODY: SUBSCRIBE MuniNet yourfirstname yourlastname For example: subscribe MuniNet John Doe You will be automatically subscribed and receive user instructions by return email. FinanceNet is an independent public Internet network established by Vice President Gore's National Performance Review in Washington, D.C. and operated by the National Science Foundation. FinanceNet reaches across geopolitical boundaries to link taxpayers and gov't financial management staff worldwide to catalyze continuous improvements in govt's stewardship and accountability of taxpayer resources. FinanceNet seeks to achieve these goals by (1) encouraging dialog for the sharing of ideas, best practices and successes through subscriptions to a series of public Internet mail lists and discussion forums, and (2) by providing an instantly available electronic library of financial information on gopher and World Wide Web Internet servers to empower government financial operations staff to make more effective decisions. For complete information on all FinanceNet services send a blank Internet e-mail message to: info@financenet.gov For more specific information on the many FinanceNet Internet mail lists, send a blank e-mail message (no subject necessary) to: email-info@financenet.gov You will automatically receive a response by return e-mail with complete details. To subscribe to our general interest list for financial management news, notices and announcements, send the message: subscribe news yourfirstname yourlastname to listproc@financenet.gov FinanceNet's URL addresses: gopher://gopher.financenet.gov http://www.financenet.gov/ ftp://ftp.financenet.gov point newsreaders to news.financenet.gov Owner: B. Preston Rich preston.rich@nsf.gov Co-Chair, FinanceNet Core Team Voice: (703) 306-1282 Established by Vice President Gore's Fax: (703) 306-0287 Office of the National Performance Review Washington, D.C. &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& Contact Vectors for the Fourth Estate of Government Date: Sun, 22 Jan 1995 18:42:57 -0800 From: Andre Bacard Attached is a media list that you might want for your GovAccess online newsletter. This material is a gift from Char Roberts, a generous Bay Area fellow who's at . Char writes: My list is ... also available via anonymous ftp at ftp.crl.com/users/ro/croberts/tvfax.txt. Updates encouraged! [Also appended is a listing of broadcast media in the Washington DC area.] TV PROGRAMS - ADDRESS/PHONE/FAX NBC CBS DATELINE-NBC 48-HOURS-CBS ------------ ------------ 30 Rockefeller Plaza #510 555 West 57th Street New York, NY 10112 New York, NY 10019 212-664-4444 212-975-4321 212-664-7073 FAX 212-975-5797 FAX MEET THE PRESS-NBC 60-MINUTES-CBS ------------------ -------------- 4001 Nebraska Avenue, NW 524 West 57th Street Washington, DC 20016 New York, NY 10019 202-885-4598 516-324-5748 02-966-4544 FAX NOW with TOM BROKAW CBS THIS MORNING & KATIE COURIC ---------------- ------------------- 524 West 57th Street 30 Rockefeller Plaza #304 New York, NY 10019 New York, NY 10112 212-975-3605 212-664-4444 212-975-2115 FAX 212-664-7355 FAX FACE THE NATION-CBS TODAY SHOW-NBC ------------------- -------------- 2020 M Street 30 Rockefeller Plaza #304 Washington, DC 20036 New York, NY 10112 202-457-4481 212-664-4444 202-457-1533 FAX 212-664-6447 FAX MAURY POVICH-CBS TONIGHT SHOW-NBC ---------------- ---------------- 221 West 26th Street 3000 West Alameda #2190 New York, NY 10112 Burbank, CA 91523 212-989-8800 818-840-2240 FAX 212-255-6646 FAX ABC PBS 20/20-ABC MACNIEL/LEHRER NEWSHOUR-PBS --------- --------------------------- 147 Columbus Avenue 3620 South 27th Street New York, NY 10112 Arlington, VA 22206 212-456-7777 703-998-2810 or 2844 212-456-2969 FAX 703-845-1458 FAX DAY ONE-ABC CHARLIE ROSE SHOW-PBS ----------- ----------------- 147 Columbus Avenue 356 West 56th Street New York, NY 10023 New York, NY 10019 212-456-7777 212-560-2909 212-560-6970 FAX DONAHUE SHOW-ABC DAVID FROST SHOW-PBS ---------------- -------------------- 30 Rockefeller Plaza #827 P.O. Box 2626 New York, NY 10112 Washington, DC 20012 212-664-6518 703-998-2626 310-275-5670 GOOD MORNING AMERICA-ABC MCLAUGLIN GROUP-PBS ------------------------ ------------------- 1717 DeSales St., NW 1211 Connecticut Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20036 Washington, DC 20036 202-887-7360 202-457-0870 202-887-7685 FAX 202-296-2285 FAX NIGHTLINE-ABC FRONTLINE-PBS ------------- ------------- 1717 DeSales St., NW WGBH BOSTON Washington, DC 20036 125 Western Ave 202-887-7360 Boston, MA 202-887-7976 FAX 617-492-2777 800-328-PBS1 VIDEOTAPES 303-831-9000 TRANSCRIPTS PRIME TIME WITH SAM DONALDSON-AC --------------------------------- Note: PBS programs receive taxpayer 1717 DeSales St., NW funding from the Corporation for Washington, DC 20036 Public Broadcasting. 202-222-7090 CPB, Second Floor 202-222-7343 FAX 901 E Street NW Washington, DC 20004-2006 COMPLAINTS: CPB/Office of Inspector General 202-879-9669 CNN C-SPAN --- ------ One CNN Center 400 North Capitol St., NW Atlanta, GA 30348-5366 Suite 650 404-827-1782 Washington, DC 20001 404-827-1593 FAX 202-737-3220 202-737-6226 FAX LARRY KING LIVE-CNN ------------------- 820 1st Street, NE 11th Floor Washington, DC 20002 202-898-7911 202-898-7923 FAX INSIDER POLITICS-CNN -------------------- [K820 1st Street, NE 11th Floor Washington, DC 20002 202-898-7911 202-842-5180 FAX CROSSFIRE-CNN ------------- 820 1st Street, NE 11th Floor Washington, DC 20002 202-898-7911 202-898-7611 FAX -------------------- List of Broadcast Media Outlets in Washington, DC ABC News 1717 DeSales St., NW Washington, DC 20036 Phone: 202-222-7777 Fax: 202-222-7686 or 7684 Bureau Chief: Robin Sproul ABC Radio News 1717 DeSales St., NW Washington, DC 20036 Phone: 202-222-7630 Bureau Chief: Richard Rosenbaum BET-TV 1899 9th St., NE Washington, DC 20018 Phone: 202-636-2803 Fax: 202-529-4009 News Director: Deborah Tang CNN 820 1st St., NE Washington, DC 20002 Phone: 202-898-7900 Fax: 202-898-7565 Bureau Chief: William W. Headline Cable Satellite Public Affairs Network (C-SPAN) 400 N. Capitol St., NW #650 Washington, DC 20001 Phone: 202-737-3220 Fax: 202-737-6226 Director of Programming: Terry Murphy CBS News 2000 M St., NW Washington, DC 20036 Phone: 202-457-4444 Fax: 202-457-4344 Bureau Chief: Barbara Cochran CBS Radio 2020 M St., NW Washington, DC 20036 Phone: 202-457-4366 Fax: 202-659-5578 Bureau Chief: Gerome Navies Consumer News and Business Channel (CNBC) 1825 K St., NW, #917 Washington, DC 20006 Phone: 202-467-5400 Fax: 202-467-5610 Bureau Chief: Glenn Rochkind Fox Television Stations, Inc. 5151 Wisconsin Ave, NW Washington, DC 20016 Phone: 202-895-3000 Fax: 202-895-3133 NBC-TV 4001 Nebraska Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20016 Phone: 202-885-4200 Fax: 202-362-2009 Bureau Chief: Tim Russert National Public Radio 635 Massachusetts Avenue, NW Washington, DC 20001 Phone: 202-414-3232 ------------------------------ Date: Fri, 3 Feb 1995 20:40:06 -0800 From: Jim Warren Subject: File 4--GovAccess.096: VA *Action*; IRS Eyes; Congr.FTP; WV; NY; Privy 46-Million Msgs per Year; 270-Million Population - Some Folks Write Often! Fri, 27 Jan 1995 08:36:15 -0500 (EST) >From Grace A York One of our doctoral students says Congress receives 46 million pieces of mail per year! &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& Virginia *ACTION ALERT*!!: Feb.4th Vote on Access to State Legislative Info Date: Thu, 02 Feb 1995 15:22:33 -0500 (EST) From: "Richard P. Klau" I've sent the following announcement out to Usenet - it slipped through two committees w/o so much as a voice against it. Also, it has been upgraded to a "prototype" bill, or whatever they call it - now, instead of a study, it would require the creation of a prototype of the system to then be implemented for full access in the next term. The Virginia General Assembly is about to vote on House Joint Resolution 482, named "Internet Study" by its sponsor, Delegate Steve Newman. HJ 482 was originally intended to be a "study bill" which would have required a study of the feasability of providing Internet access to Virginia's legislative information. However, HJ 482 has been "upgraded" so that if it passes, the State will be required to develop a prototype of such a system. If successful, the prototype would be converted to a full system for Virginians in the next legislative session. The bill is on the floor of the House of Delegates and debate will occur on Saturday, February 4, 1995. A vote will most likely take place on Monday, February 6, 1995. Delegate Newman's legislative aide Curt Diemer indicates that the general reaction to the bill has been positive. However, there has been no indication to the General Assembly that Virginians like you and me will actually use such a system. WHAT YOU CAN DO The General Assembly has one fax number for the Delegates. If you do not know who your Delegate is, call Delegate Newman's office and ask Curt Diemer who represents your area. Fax your Delegate stating your support of HJ 482, and state why - *briefly*. [One page is about the right length. -j] This has to happen NOW! The vote will happen within a few days. The Fax number for the House of Delegates is: (804)786-6310 If you have any more questions about this bill, please feel free to contact me. A listserv at the Electronic Frontier Foundation is in the process of being set up and I will send information out once it is finalized. Richard P. Klau 2L, University of Richmond TC Williams School of Law klaurich@uofrlaw.urich.edu Note: I am not speaking for the University. [This seems to be moving *awfully* fast by legislative standards. Hmmm. BEWARE!!! - Two major potential "gotchas: Someone needs to check the exact text in this bill *immediately* - to make sure that it explicitly *prohibits* any state agency from charging access fees for access to these crucial public legislative records, and that it explicitly *permits* re-use and re-distribution of copies of any and all such records as soon as they are made available, for free or for fee, by individuals, publishers, nonprofit organizations and commercial entrepreneurs. --jim] &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& IRS Initiates Massive New Database - Item [6] from the EPIC Alert (below) On December 20, the Internal Revenue Service announced in the Federal Register that it was planning a new database to monitor compliance of taxpayers in a project entitled Compliance 2000. The database would contain information on all individuals in the U.S. who conduct certain financial transactions and would be segmented by different criteria: Any individual who has business and/or financial activities. These may be grouped by industry, occupation, or financial transactions, included in commercial databases, or in information provided by state and local licensing agencies. The new database will combine private and public sector databases in a single searchable entity. A number of federal financial databases from the IRS will be enhanced with state, local and commercial sources. The Federal Register notice describes the non-tax databases: Examples of other information would include data from commercial databases, any state's Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), credit bureaus, state and local real estate records, commercial publications, newspapers, airplane and pilot information, U.S. Coast Guard vessel registration information, any state's Department of Natural Resources information, as well as other state and local records. In addition, Federal government databases may also be accessed, such as, federal employment files, federal licensing data, etc. Finally, even though the proposed system would use frequently inaccurate "commercial databases" such as direct marketing records, taxpayers would not be able to review their records to ensure that they are accurate and up to date: "This system is exempt from the access and contest provisions of the Privacy Act." EPIC is filing comments asking the IRS to reconsider its use of commercial databases and to ensure that there are greater safeguards on the collection and use of personal information. A copy of the Federal Register notice is available at cpsr.org /cpsr/privacy/epic/IRS_compliance_2000_notice_txt Comments on the proposed system must be received by January 19, 1995, and sent to Office of Disclosure, Internal Revenue Service, 1111 Conn. Ave, NW, Washington, DC 20224. EPIC's Comments are available at cpsr.org /cpsr/privacy/epic/epic_irs_compliance_2000_comments.txt . &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& Congressional Vectors in Database Format - Available by FTP Sat, 28 Jan 1995 17:50:36 -0800 (PST) >From "Janet E. Harrison" I have put together databases in various file formats for the House and the Senate. I have sent them to Jeff Chan for putting into his ftp directory. The files include fields for LName, FName, Party, State, District, Chamber, Room, OfficeBuilding, Zip, email, voicephone, and fax. There are also separate files that have only names and fax numbers of members for whom I have numbers, without all the other fields, to make them easy to import into faxmodem software's phonebooks. The files are available in ascii comma-delimited format, WordPerfect 5.1 secondary merge file format, and WordPerfect Office Notebook format. The fax-only files are only available in ascii comma-delimited format. The fax numbers are more complete than those in Grace York's list at U.Mich. I have emailed my list to her so she can update hers. The ftp site is: ftp://ftp.shell.portal.com/pub/chan/federal/104 [Now, about this list's monumental maintenance problem ... :-) --jim] &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& West Virginia Apparently Offers *Modern* Copies of Its Public Records Thu, 26 Jan 1995 22:12:41 -0500 >From Wayne Lorentz via Peter Sussman To: Multiple recipients of list FOI-L [This is a Freedom-of-Information listserv. --jim] A surprising Diamond in the search for information is the state of West Virginia. According to the FOI law, if the information you are looking for is in a form other than paper copy, it must be provided to you in that form, if you request. To quote (Hey, I'm a journalist - it's more than a habit - it's a nervous tick) SS29B-1-3-3 "...if the records requested exist in magnetic, electronic, or computer form, the custodian of the records shall make such copies available on magnetic or electronic media, if so requested." That quote is from an earlier version (I keep the most recent one at work). The current rendition has been expanded from magnetic media to films, slides, overheads, etc... Very nice, indeed, especially after the horror stories I've heard in other states. As an example, I was doing a project on fraud. So I started with a list of all the not-for-profit groups registered in the state. To print it out would have been over one hundred pages. However, since the list is stored in a Paradox database on their IBM computers, I was able to get a copy of the file on a computer disk. I used the Quattro Pro spreadsheet to look at and manipulate the data (since I don't have a database program). Very helpful, and saved me money over the "reasonable cost" of duplication (they only charged $5 for the whole thing.) [ <===!!! WOW! --jim] &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& New York State Government Documents Online Library, Apparently Fee-Free >From john.perz@hvbbs.com (John Perz) Date: Fri, 27 Jan 1995 01:35:54 GMT The Legislative Gazette is a weekly newspaper covering the New York State Government put out by journalism & political science majors at State University of New York at Albany. In the January 23 issue, in a special section on the New York State Library, the following appeared: " . . . NYSDOC is a mailing list for New York State government documents and information issues. To subscribe, send a message to listproc@unix2.nysed.gov with message "subscribe NYSDOC firstname lastname". To post messages, send to nysdoc@unix2.nysed.gov The contact person for the list is David Gosda, New York State Library, david@unix2.nysed.gov (518-473-6297)." "As a viable and necessary component of external information management, the State Library in cooperation with the State Archives and Records Administration is developing a prototype government Information Locator System (ILS). The ILS provides descriptive histories and organizational information about all 75 state agencies. It is accessible over the Internet (unix2.nysed.gov) and includes connections to executive, legislative, and judicial information servers (gophers) as well as government information sources such as the New York State OGS Contract Database and the Rural Assistance Information Network." "Joseph F.Shubert, state librarian and assistant commissioner for libraries, explained that "the New York State Library is ready to receive New York State publications in electronic format and make them available via the Internet, under the provision of chapter 331 of the Laws of 1994." This summer, legislation was signed requiring state agencies to forward a machine-readable copy of all public documents recorded in electronic or machine-readable format to the New York State Library." &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& Eating the Internal Revenue Code - A RoboGopher Progress Report Fri, 27 Jan 95 18:25:13 +0100 >From [In the last exciting episode, our hero was about to hack his Gopher source-code so it would *automatically* retrieve several thousand separate files that compose the Codes of interest.] My newly-born RoboGopher is now happily lapping up the 1994 Internal Revenue Code from the House Gopher server (hamilton1.house.gov), which has the *entire* U.S. Code on-line. Since the Internal Revenue code comprises just two of the 50 titles of the USC, and it's 22 megabytes, the mind boggles at how big the whole thing must be (though I suspect the IRC is more complicated than most). [I had commented, earlier, re such Gopher automation:] >>I'm surprised that it's not already>been done and splattered all over the >>net. I'm virtually certain something so obvious has been done dozens of times, but a check of the FAQs and a scan of the Gopher newsgroup turned up nothing other than one plaintive request for precisely what I was hoping to find--and no replies. What I've got is currently heroically ugly--the name of the directory where it puts the retrieved files is compiled into the program--but it required less than 50 lines of changes to the gopher client program to add recursive retrieval. You just navigate to the root of the material you want to retrieve and press "z". It walks through an arbitrarily deep hierarchy in order, saving each item to a file name consisting of a zero-filled number that increments from 1 to the number of files saved, followed by the item title converted into a Unix file name as Gopher currently does. It sleeps for 30 seconds between documents to avoid getting a reputation as a net.hog. If you run across somebody with a need for something like this (who doesn't mind rebuilding such programs from the source), let me know and I'll clean it up and send it their way. [UNIX HACKERS: I think this would be almost-exactly the tool needed to auto-fetch the thousands of separate files that compose the California Legislature's public archives of legislation, statutes and the constitution. Da? And, after the first humonguous sucking sound, probably this RoboRooter - used to dislodge what RotoRooters are usually used for - could be trivially-modified so as to fetch only those files that have been modified after a certain date.] After I finish updating the tax code, I'll probably also do the Patents, Copyrights, and Nationality titles if I can summon the courage to wade through more ugly ASCII. &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& EPIC - Electronic Privacy Information Center - Lobbies DC; Informs US The Electronic Privacy Information Center is a public interest research center in Washington, DC. It was established in 1994 to focus public attention on emerging privacy issues relating to the National Information Infrastructure, such as the Clipper Chip, the Digital Telephony proposal, medical record privacy, and the sale of consumer data. EPIC is sponsored by the Fund for Constitutional Government and Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility. EPIC publishes the EPIC Alert and EPIC Reports, pursues Freedom of Information Act litigation, and conducts policy research on emerging privacy issues. Example EPIC ALERT online newsletter contents: Volume 2.01, Jan. 18, 1995 [1] Nader Speaks to Privacy Advocates [2] European Privacy Directive Moves Forward [3] EPIC Calls for Congressional FOIA [4] New DOJ Guidelines on Computer Search and Seizure [5] Court Dismisses LaMacchia Case [6] IRS Initiates New Database System [7] EPIC WWW Page and Digicash Donations [8] Upcoming Conferences and Events [...] The Fund for Constitutional Government is a non-profit organization established in 1974 to protect civil liberties and constitutional rights. Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility is a national membership organization of people concerned about the impact of technology on society. For information contact: cpsr-info@cpsr.org For more information, email info@epic.org, WWW at HTTP://epic.digicash.com /epic or write EPIC, 666 Pennsylvania Ave., SE, Suite 301, Washington, DC 20003. (202) 544-9240 (tel), (202) 547-5482 (fax). The EPIC Alert is a free biweekly publication of the Electronic Privacy Information Center. To subscribe, send the message: SUBSCRIBE CPSR-ANNOUNCE Firstname Lastname to listserv@cpsr.org. You may also receive the Alert by reading the USENET newsgroup comp.org.cpsr.announce. Back issues are available via FTP/WAIS/Gopher/HTTP from cpsr.org /cpsr/alert and on Compuserve (Go NCSA), Library 2 (EPIC/Ethics). An HTML version of the current issue is available from epic.digicash.com/epic &&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&&& "Let us contemplate our forefathers, and posterity, and resolve to maintain the rights bequeathed to us from the former, for the sake of the latter. ... Let us remember that 'if we suffer tamely a lawless attack upon our liberty, we encourage it, and involve others in our doom.' It is a very serious consideration that millions yet unborn may be the miserable sharers of the event." - Samuel Adams ("patriot, statesman, brewer"), speech, 1771 [via Stanton McCandlish ] ------------------------------ Date: Thu, 23 Oct 1994 22:51:01 CDT From: CuD Moderators Subject: File 5--Cu Digest Header Information (unchanged since 25 Nov 1994) Cu-Digest is a weekly electronic journal/newsletter. Subscriptions are available at no cost electronically. CuD is available as a Usenet newsgroup: comp.society.cu-digest Or, to subscribe, send a one-line message: SUB CUDIGEST your name Send it to LISTSERV@UIUCVMD.BITNET or LISTSERV@VMD.CSO.UIUC.EDU The editors may be contacted by voice (815-753-0303), fax (815-753-6302) or U.S. mail at: Jim Thomas, Department of Sociology, NIU, DeKalb, IL 60115, USA. 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