Computer underground Digest Wed Sept 6, 1995 Volume 7 : Issue 72 ISSN 1004-042X Editors: J

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Computer underground Digest Wed Sept 6, 1995 Volume 7 : Issue 72 ISSN 1004-042X Editors: Jim Thomas and Gordon Meyer (TK0JUT2@MVS.CSO.NIU.EDU Archivist: Brendan Kehoe Shadow Master: Stanton McCandlish Field Agent Extraordinaire: David Smith Shadow-Archivists: Dan Carosone / Paul Southworth Ralph Sims / Jyrki Kuoppala Ian Dickinson CONTENTS, #7.72 (Wed, Sept 6, 1995) File 1--SUG's Computers & the Law II Sympsium File 2--Policial potency of the net File 3--Cu Digest Header Info (unchanged since 19 Apr, 1995) CuD ADMINISTRATIVE, EDITORIAL, AND SUBSCRIPTION INFORMATION APPEARS IN THE CONCLUDING FILE AT THE END OF EACH ISSUE. --------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Fri, 1 Sep 1995 15:34:16 -0400 (EDT) From: John Subject: File 1--SUG's Computers & the Law II Sympsium SUN USER GROUP Second Annual Technical Symposium "Computers & The Law" November 12-15, 1995 Tampa, FL As computers are utilized in more and more aspects of everyday life, the once distinct areas of technology, legislature, and law enforcement draw closer together. This unique technical conference provides a forum in which members of these three fields can meet to share experiences and ideas. The four day technical program (a day of tutorials, two days of talks, and another day of tutorials) will provide you with essential knowledge, whether your field is technical, legal, or law enforcement. Copies of this information are available via email at or on the World Wide Web at If you have further questions, contact the Sun User Group at (617)232-0514. +-----------------------------------------------------------------------+ | IMPORTANT DATES TO REMEMBER: | | Early-bird Savings Deadline: October 13, 1995 | | Registrations must be received at the Sun User Group offices | | by October 13, 1995 to be eligible for Early-bird savings | | | | Hotel Discount Reservation Deadline: October 21, 1995 | +-----------------------------------------------------------------------+ CONFERENCE OVERVIEW: SUNDAY, November 12, 1995 - TUTORIAL PROGRAM MONDAY, November 13, 1995 - TECHNICAL SESSIONS TUESDAY, November 14, 1995 - TECHNICAL SESSIONS WEDNESDAY, November 15, 1995 - TUTORIAL PROGRAM TUTORIALS: ---------- The SUG Tutorial Program brings experienced training professionals to you. Courses are presented by skilled teachers who are hands-on experts in their topic areas. The tutorials will cover a variety of topics relating to Sun/SPARC and x86-based machines, running any of a number of operating systems. Those who attend the tutorials will benefit from this unique opportunity to develop essential skills in a unique combination of UNIX system security, ethical, and legal topics. The tutorial program at Tampa is divided into two days, with both full- and half-day tutorials offered. Attendees may select any non-overlapping set of classes. To ensure adequate seating and to reduce crowding, we are requiring that registrants pre-register for specific classes. Please note that some prior knowledge is required for the advanced tutorials. SUG's tutorial program is always in demand, and some tutorials are almost guaranteed to sell out before registration closes. Attendance is limited, and pre-registration is strongly recommended. On-site registration is possible ONLY if space permits. Sunday, November 12, 1995 Tutorials ----------------------------------- S1 - 9:00am-5:00pm Basics of Unix Security Peter Galvin, Corporate Technologies, Inc. This course will teach you the very basics about Unix security, including some common threats, what to monitor in the file system, standard publicly-available tools and resources, and some common programmed threats to Unix including how to deal with denial-of-service attacks. The emphasis of this class is on security basics -- the very fundamentals to making a Unix system more secure. Thus, this course is targetted at new Unix administrators and auditors, and those who have not had as much background and experience with security as they might need. The material is presented in a vendor-independent fashion, and presupposes no prior knowledge of (or access to) source code. Students will receive a copy of "Practical Unix Security" by Simson Garfinkel and Gene Spafford, which will be used as the textbook for the course. Overview What is security?How do we get better security? Users & authentication What defines a user? Passwords and identification Special permissions Working in groups Setting good passwords Filesystem protection File types and protection modes Setting modes Checking modes Checking for changes Programmed attacks Viruses Worms Trojan Horses & boobytraps other problems Security tools and add-ons COPS Crack TCP wrappers SPI other resources Response teams & assistance FIRST FBI, SS, local ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR: Peter Galvin is the Chief Technologist for Corporate Technologies, Inc. and was the Systems Manager for Brown University's Computer Science Department. Mr. Galvin is on the Board of Directors for the Sun User Group. He has used, programmed, and managed computer systems for 15 years, including 8 years with Sun equipment. As a consultant and trainer, he has taught a week-long course in Sun system administration, and given talks at SunWorld and the annual SUG conferences, for which he has also served as Chair of the Program Committee. He is a columnist for the "Superuser" newsletter, and coauthor of _Operating Systems Concepts_ by Silberschatz and Galvin. Mr. Galvin holds a Master's degree in Computing Science from the University of Texas at Austin S2 - 9:00am-5:00pm System Administrator Liability Edward A. Cavazos Target Audience: This tutorial is designed to meet the needs of the system administrator who is faced with the perplexing legal problems posed by activities related to overseeing a multi-user system which is connected to the Internet. Individuals involved in establishing, operating and managing private, commercial, or government systems of this type, along with those in a position to draft policies setting the limits of system use and user expectations will benefit by becoming aware of the underlying legal issues and the current thinking with regards to limiting potential legal liabilities. Topics discussed will include: * Sysadmins, Lawyers and the Law: Sources of law (statutes, precedents and the common law), jurisdiction, where to go for legal information and updates, criminal vs. civil law, the nature of lawsuits and choosing a lawyer. * E-Mail Privacy: Understanding the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and other statutory or common law schemes which protect e-mail and communication privacy, exceptions to the ECPA which sysadmins need to know, and how to define and clarify the expectations of privacy held by users. * Defamation Liability: Limiting liability for defamatory messages emanating from your site, understanding current precedents with regardto sysadmin liability for defamation originating on USENET and similar public forums, and drawing the line between censorship and responsible administration. * Copyright Law for the Sysadmin: A copyright "primer," issues involving software transmitted via anonymous FTP, steps a sysadmin can take to avoid a copyright infringemt lawsuit, ownership of materials "posted" to publicdiscussion groups or conferences, new problems related to WWW and what level of knowledge might form the basis of liability. * Adult Materials: understanding the current legal analysis pertaining to sexually explicit computer materials, recognizing unprotected activity and how to limit it and novel new questions posed by morphing and related technologies. * Protecting Your System: user agreements, acceptable use policies, log-in banners, employment policies and similar methods of defining the acceptable parameters of system e. ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR: Edward A. Cavazos is a practicing attorney with in the Houston office of the law firm of Andrews & Kurth, where he represents high-tech and Internet related companies. His practice involves rendering services involving litigation, employment law, products liability, and general business representation. Prior to becoming licensed, he was involved in computer consulting and hardware and software development. He has also been a BBS sysop for almost ten years. He is the author of several articles relating to on-line legal issues and system administrator liability questions, and is the co- author of Cyberspace and the Law: Your Rights and Duties in the On-Line World (MIT Press). Mr. Cavazos is also a frequent lecturer on the legal issues posed by computer communications. When not writing or speaking, he serves on the Board of Directors of Electronic Frontiers Houston. Wednesday, November 15, 1995 Tutorials ----------------------------------- W1 - 9:00am-5:00pm Firewalls and Internet Security Rik Farrow, Consultant A connection to the Internet can lead to probes and attacks from sites around the world. This one day course examines probing tools, some TCP/IP basics, routers configured for packet screening, and full fledged firewalls. You will leave this course with enough information to make decisions about the security of your Internet connection, and how to choose the appropriate technology to control and audit your connection to the Internet. * Probing sites--how hackers find sites, and how to probe your own site. * TCP/IP basics--understand the basic protocols involved in Internet attacks and firewall design. * Routers and their uses in firewall design. * Proxy servers on bastion hosts--essential element for a complete firewall design. * Choosing a firewall product or public domain software. ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR: Rik Farrow has worked with the UNIX system since 1982, and has written two books, UNIX Administration Guide to System V (Prentice Hall, 1989), and UNIX System Security (Addison-Wesley, 1991). Since 1986, he has taught courses on UNIX security and system administration for conferences, user groups, and businesses, in the US and Europe. He was the Technical Editor of UNIX World magazine for four years (as a contractor), and still writes for several magazines. He has been self-employed for 15 years, enjoys mountain biking, living in the high desert and flying small planes. W3a - 9:00pm- 12:30pm Network Intrusions John Smith, Computer Crime Unit, Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office An intruder has gained access to your computer system. How do you explain what was stolen and how to a police detective who thinks you're speaking a foreign language? How can you, the system administrator, help the detectives write the report or explain to them that they might have to do the examination of any recovered evidence such as a copied account? Actual cases of computer crimes in Silicon Valley are used as examples. Students will follow what has to be done in an investigation, step by step, including the initial reports that would be the basis of any search warrants or restraining orders. Students will learn how to speed up an investigation by learning to prepare reports and diagrams that can be part of a request for a search warrant. The Santa Clara County District Attorney's Officer Hi Tech/Computer Crime Team has had years of experience investigating and prosecuting trade secret thefts, network intrusions, chip thefts, and other types of high tech thefts in Silicon Valley. This experience is interesting and can serve as a means of educating computer administrators how to protect their computers and systems, how to prepare an investigation, how to get the appropriate law enforcement support, and how to prepare to testify in court if necessary. Topics covered include: COMMON INTRUSION METHODS: * POOR PASSWORDS: don't set youself up to be cracked! * CRACKER PROGRAMS: the most vicious ones in the cracker toolkit - TFTP and TCP/IP - Trojan Horses - Backdoor Programs - TIGER and other tools * SOCIAL ENGINEERING: People can be cracked too, you know. * PHYSICAL SECURITY: do you know who your modem is talking to? * GUEST OR ANONYMOUS ACCOUNTS: sure you'll let your sister date him, but would you give him an account on your machine? COMMON ERRORS: * BUGS and common Security holes * IP ADDRESSING: what all those numbers & names mean * MISCONFIGURED SYSTEMS: Some inital configurations come with holes that vendors expect system admins to fix. * TRUSTED HOST: don't leave your system wide open PLUS... * PACKET BREAKING: Header and other information can be read. * CHECKSUMS: Comparison of present value with the last known secure value. * SNIFFER OR LANALYZER: Used to grab packets so they can be analyzed. * UNIX PROMISCOUS MODE * TIE INTO ETHERNET * TELNET TO A CUTOUT * FIREWALLS * ENCRYPTION - PGP BEGINNING INVESTIGATIONS * Talk with a systems operator who can explain. * The vital "S"-list: SPEED; STEALTH; SYSTEM SECURITY; SECURE EVIDENCE; SUSPICIOUS/SCREWY EMPLOYEES; SHOW & EXPLAIN - REPORTING; SEARCH ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR: John C. Smith is an investigator with the Computer/High Tech Crime Unit of the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office. He is a frequent guest and lecturer at Sun User Group meetings and was the Chair for the law enforcement track. T3b - 1:30pm-5:00pm Ethics and Systems Administration S.Lee Henry, Johns Hopkins University Sysadmins find themselves increasingly involved in ethical dilemmas that pit security against privacy, and threaten to disrupt the delicate balance between personal and commercial interests. When, if ever, should you overlook the personal use of business computers? How should you handle matters involving the potentially illegal use of your systems? How do you protect your users' privacy while not making yourself liable for their activities? Can you effectively curb the spread of pirated software? What are the safest and most defensible policies to adhere to in light of current laws and legal precedents? Can you enforce policies that guard against abuse while not handcuffing the people whose commitment and creativity your organization most needs? What should you do if the abuser is your boss? This highly interactive, fast-paced tutorial will challenge sysadmins to come to grips with some difficult ethical dilemmas. ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR: S. Lee Henry is a columnist for SunExpert magazine and has been managing Sun net works for about ten years. She currently manages networking and systems for the Physics and Astronomy Department at Johns Hopkins University. Prior to this, she spent ten years doing similar work for "the U.S. Government", also known at the CIA. Slee has been serving on the Board of Directors of the Sun User Group for the past four years. KEYNOTE SPEAKERS: ----------------- The Sun User Group keynote sessions are topical and informative -- speakers you won't hear at any other conference! Ken Geide, Chief, FBI Economic Espionage Unit "Economic Espionage in the USA" Monday, November 13, 9 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. TECHNICAL SESSIONS (Monday, November 13 & Tuesday, November 14): ------------------------------------------------------------------- "Computers & The Law" features three distinct parallel tracks of talks: Technical; Legal; and Law Enforcement. The TECHNICAL track will focus on nuts and bolts of maintaining a UNIX or Sun system. These talks will cover the all of the newest developments in the changing world of technology. There are talks from the experts on: UNIX and network security; encryption; software distribution in a client/server environment; firewalls. The LEGAL track will cover up-to-date issues of privacy and morality, as well as in-depth examinations of the current and changing laws pertaining to software and hardware. Legal professionals from all over the country will examine how changing technologies will necessitate changes in the law. The LAW ENFORCEMENT track discusses computers as tools. Tools which can help in the prevention of crimes -- or in the commission of them. Join or experts in high-tech crime as the discuss the discovery, investigation, apprehension, and prosecution of crackers, software pirates, and bandits on the information on the information superhighway. SPECIAL FEATURES: "The Future of Computer Crime" Join our panel of experts from both sides of the law discuss and predict the uses and abuses of computers into the next century. "Unix Security Tools Workshop" Peter Galvin, Corporate Technologies, Inc. With so many tools available to help detect and prevent security problems, you practically need a guide to what's available, where to get it, what it does, and why you'd want to use it. This workshop is that guide. We'll look at scanning tools, detection tools, prevention tools, firewall tools, and tools to help during the course of a break-in. Note that this is a workshop, not just a talk: If you have favorite tools, please be ready to talk about them! The Great Debate: Round 2 "Can Existing Laws Be Applied To Cyberspace?" "Cyberspace is the new frontier, and is like nothing we've seen or experiened before. In order to keep order in this new wilderness, we need new legislation. Current laws, fine for lower technologies, can't possible keep up with the rapidly changing face of cyberspace." -- OR -- "Cyberspace isn't "space" at all. It's not a place, it's a tool, like a FAX machine or a telephone. We don't need special 'electronic' laws, because all of the issues that come up on The Internet have all come up before." Which is it? Come hear constitutional law expert Michael Froomkin (University of Miami Law School) and former New Jersey Securities commissioner Jared Silverman (Hannoch Weisman) in the debate which will could change the shape of Cyberspace - or your view of it. Scheduled Papers: ----------------- "Information Commerce - Launching Content into Cyberspace" David Bernstein, Electronic Publishing Resources "Approaching the Horizon: The Evolving Landscape of Content Regulation Online, 1995" Marshall K. Dyer, Attorney-at-law "System Administration - Creating A High-Availability Computing Environment" Chip Downing, Director of Technical Services, Qualix Group, Inc. "The Problem with Passwords: Zero Knowledge Authentication as a Replacement for Conventional Passphrase Schemes" Ben Samman, Yale University Law School "Issues in Software License Management" Dr. Ganapathy Krishnan, Intelligent Software Solutions "XNet License - A multi-platform flexible license manager" Dr. Ganapathy Krishnan, Intelligent Software Solutions "Sidewinder: Enhanced Security for UNIX Firewalls" Dan Thomsen, Secure Computing Corporation "Secret Service Computer Investigations" Bob Friel, U S Secret Service, Electronic Crimes Branch, "FBI Computer Crime Team's Mission" Richard Ress, Supervising Special Agent, FBI Computer Crime Squad "Victim's Perspective - Ramification of Criminal or Civil Filing" Kathryn J (Kate) Fritz, Attorney at Law, Fenwick & West "Prosecution of Computer Crime - State Level" Lee Hollander, Florida State's Attorney "Computer Related Pornography" Doug Rehman, Florida Dept of Law Enforcement "Industrial Espionage in Silicon Valley" John C. Smith, Investigator, Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office BIRDS-OF-A-FEATHER SESSIONS --------------------------- Birds-of-a-Feather Sessions (BOFs) allow attendees to meet and discuss topics of interest to them. BOF Sessions are intended to be highly interactive and much less formal than the Technical Sessions. Birds-of-a-Feather Sessions will be held Tuesday evening at the Conference hotel. We would particularly like to encourage Birds-of-a-Feather Sessions on topics which would not normally be discussed during typical technical presentations (for instance, discussions on professional and technical issues, non-professional interests common to Systems Administrators, etc.) To schedule a BOF Session, or to request more information, direct your e-mail to BOFs may also be scheduled on-site. RECEPTION Sponsored by our friends at SunExpress! --------- You are invited to join in the fun, mingle with old and new friends, and enjoy the plentiful hors d'oeuvres and beverages. The Sun User Group Reception is Monday, November 13, from 6:00-8:00pm at the Conference hotel. The Reception is included in the technical sessions registration fee. Additional Reception tickets may be purchased for a nominal fee at the conference. CONFERENCE PUBLICATIONS ----------------------- One copy of the Conference Proceedings, which contains all refereed papers, and one copy of the Invited Talks Submitted Notes may be picked up at the conference by all technical sessions registrants. Additional copies may be purchased at the conference. THE SUN USER GROUP ------------------ The Sun User Group (SUG) brings people together to share information and ideas about using Sun/SPARC equipment. You can discover new ways to save time and money in the pages of _Readme_. You can get quick answers to important questions on our electronic mailing list. At our seminars you can learn more about the capabilities of your workstation. At our conferences, you can meet other people who are doing progressive and innovative work with their Sun/SPARC equipment. Now is a better time than ever to join the Sun User Group. We're reorganized, reinvented and growing every day. We've recently introduced exciting new services specifically for our official LUGs. Our members-only electronic mailing list has become one of the most popular routes on the information highway. Our annual conferences feature respected teachers - from Sun Microsystems as well as many other areas of the industry. HOTEL INFORMATION ----------------- Crowne Plaza, Sabal Park Computers & The Law II Symposium Headquarters 10221 Princess Palm Avenue Tampa, FL 33610 voice (813) 623-6363 FAX (813) 246-7113 (800) 866-7666 reservations within the USA The Crowne Plaza is an elegant five-story, full service hotel conveniently located at the intersection of Interstates 4 and 75, only 20 minutes from Tampa International Airport. The hotel operates a complimentary airport shuttle and is only minutes from Busch Gardens, the new Florida Aquarium, as well as many other popular attractions. The Sun User Group has a special negotiated rate of $85.00/night for attendees of the Computers & The Law symposium. Please be sure to mention that you are attending the Sun User Group conference and reserve your room before October 21, 1995. REGISTRATION INFORMATION AND FEES --------------------------------- +-------------------------------------------------------------------+ | Sun User Group members save $50.00! | +-------------------------------------------------------------------+ +-------------------------------------------------------------------+ | Earlybird Bonus! Register before October 6, 1995 and | | save $100.00 *plus* get the Sun User Group "Security" | | CD-ROM for FREE -- a $195 savings if you register by | | October 13, 1995! | +-------------------------------------------------------------------+ For more information please call (617) 232-0514. Mail, Email, or FAX registration to: SUG Symposium 1330 Beacon Street, Suite 344 Brookline, MA 02146 USA Email: Fax: (617) 232-1347 You may also register over the telephone with a Master Card or Visa. Please print or type the information required. To join or renew your membership to Sun User Group when registering for the conference technical sessions, pay the full registration fee and check the appropriate box below. A portion of your registration fee will be designated as dues in full for a one year individual Sun User Group membership. Sun User Group Membership Status * * PLEASE CHECK ONLY ONE * * [ ] I am a current Sun User Group member. SUG ID#__________________ Exp. Date__________ Both SUG ID# and exp. date MUST be filled in to be eligible for the "Current SUG member" discount below. If you do not know your SUG ID# or expiration date, please call (617)232-0514 or contact SUG at [ ] I am not a current Sun User Group member and would like SUG to apply a portion of my registration fee to a one-year SUG membership. [ ] I am not a current Sun User Group member but do not wish to join at this time. +---------------------------------------+---------------+ |[ ] Sessions, one-day only | $200 | | Please indicate day: | | | [ ] Monday, November 13, 1995 | | | [ ] Tuesday, November 14, 1995 | | +---------------------------------------+---------------+ |[ ] Sessions, both days | $350 | +---------------------------------------+---------------+ |[ ] One Tutorial only | $350 | | Please indicate choice below | | +---------------------------------------+---------------+ |[ ] One Tutorial and Sessions | $650 | | Please indicate choice below | | +---------------------------------------+---------------+ |[ ] Full Conference | $900 | | Full Conference includes two | | | days of tutorials, plus two days| | | of sessions. A savings of $200!| | | Please indicate choices below | | +---------------------------------------+---------------+ DISCOUNTS: +---------------------------------------+---------------+ |[ ] Current SUG Member Discount | | | You *must* provide your SUG ID | | | number to get this discount. | -$ 50 | |---------------------------------------+---------------+ |[ ] Early-bird! Register before | -$100 | | October 13, 1995 and save $100 | | | dollars PLUS get the new SUG | | | Security CD FREE!! | | +---------------------------------------+---------------+ +---------------------------------------+---------------+ |Total Payment Enclosed | | --------------------------------------------------------+ ** NOTE: November 1, 1995 is the last day for advance registration. A $100 on-site fee will be applied to all registrations received after November 1, 1995. ** TUTORIAL SELECTION: ------------------- You can select either one full-day tutorial or two half day tutorials (Half-day tutorial registration fees are not available). Please indicate tutorial(s) below: Sunday, November 12, 1995 [ ] S1 - Basics of Unix Security [ ] S2 - System Administrator Liability Wednesday, November 15, 1995 [ ] W1 - Network Security: The Kerberos Approach [ ] W2a - Network Intrusions and W2b - Ethics and Systems Administration - All payments must be in US dollars; - Checks must be drawn on a US bank. - Purchase Orders must be paid in full before your registration will be released. Purchase Orders must be paid in full before October 13th to qualify for earlybird discount. POs unpaid before November 1st may result in cancellation of registration. - The Sun User Group does not accept American Express [ ] Check [ ] Purchase Order [ ] MasterCard [ ] Visa Credit Card Number:___________________________________________________ Expiration Date:______________________________________________________ Signature of cardholder:______________________________________________ Name:_________________________________________________________________ Title:________________________________________________________________ Company Name:_________________________________________________________ Department:___________________________________________________________ Mail Stop/Suite:______________________________________________________ Street Address:_______________________________________________________ City:_________________________________________________________________ State:________________________________________________________________ Zip/Postal Code:______________________________________________________ Country:______________________________________________________________ Email Address:________________________________________________________ Phone:________________________________________________________________ REFUND CANCELLATION POLICY If you must cancel, all refund requests must be in writing and postmarked no later than October 6, 1995. Direct your letter to the Sun User Group office. You may telephone to substitute another in your place. FOR FURTHER CONFERENCE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT: Sun User Group 1330 Beacon Street Suite 344 Brookline, MA 02146 Telephone: (617) 232-0514 Fax: (617) 232-1347 Electronic Mail Address: World Wide Web: You may FAX your registration form if paying by credit card or purchase order to (617) 232-1347. If you FAX registration, to avoid duplicate billing, do not mail additional copy. You may telephone our office to confirm receipt of your fax. ********************************************************************* PAYMENT MUST ACCOMPANY REGISTRATION FORM. REGISTRATION VIA EMAIL IS ACCEPTABLE WITH A CREDIT CARD ********************************************************************* ------------------------------ Date: Sat, 2 Sep 1995 11:08:38 -0400 From: Dick Mills Subject: File 2--Policial potency of the net Mark) wrote an excellent article [CUD #7.69] on "File 4 - Heroes and Villains." It provided a splash of cold reality of the kind we don't hear often on the net. Good work Mark. Your article amply illustrates that democratic doesn't mean effective. In real life, endless rants, raves, and flames are likely to have the opposite effect intended. You're right; but I think your implied admonishment to Netters to BE RESPONSIBLE, are as ineffective as that you decry. Here's why. What do you expect? The net is anarchistic. Anarchists have the same fundamental problem taking control of politics as celibates do in taking over the gene pool. Why admonish us to get our act together? What can we do within the constraints of the medium as it works today? Everyone says his own thing. You did it and now I'm doing it. There is no leader, and no copy editor. True, there are newsletters like CUD, but there is no effective way to edit or filter the general babble. An alternative medium that recently achieved politically potency is talk radio. I think the reason why it succeeded is clear. Rush. Rush provides a focal point and leadership for like minded people to rally behind. This gives their views coherency and thus potency. I suppose, the combination of the Christian Right and Christian TV is an analogous success story. ALTERNATIVE MEDIUM + A FOCAL POINT = NEWFOUND POTENCY. *Will* the net ever find its focal point? Who knows? It would be nice, but there is no guarantee that it will ever happen. *Should* the net find its focal point? There I have two opinions. 1) The net has potential for improving our democracy quite a bit. The improvement would come from breaking the monopoly of mainstream media and their control of the flow of information. 2) As an old fart, I'm attracted to the net precisely because it gives me the opportunity to act juvenilely and irresponsibly. That includes political irresponsibility, i.e. flaming. It's a great release from the pressures of real life. If it weren't for my gray hair and wrinkles, I'd do it at the bar scene. Behind the anonymity of my modem, nobody knows who I *really* am. I sincerely hope that if and when the net finds itself, that we will leave a corner remaining for juvenile wannabes. ;) No. On second thought, :| ------------------------------ Date: Sun, 19 Apr 1995 22:51:01 CDT From: CuD Moderators Subject: File 3--Cu Digest Header Info (unchanged since 19 Apr, 1995) Cu-Digest is a weekly electronic journal/newsletter. Subscriptions are available at no cost electronically. CuD is available as a Usenet newsgroup: Or, to subscribe, send a one-line message: SUB CUDIGEST your name Send it to 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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