Computer underground Digest Wed Oct 11, 1995 Volume 7 : Issue 80 ISSN 1004-042X Editors: J
Computer underground Digest Wed Oct 11, 1995 Volume 7 : Issue 80
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
Cu Digest Homepage: http://www.soci.niu.edu/~cudigest
CONTENTS, #7.80 (Wed, Oct 11, 1995)
File 1--Charges against Lorne Shantz dropped.
File 2--Am Action BBS (Rob't Thomas) appeal in 6th Circuit
File 3--Telecommunications Act Re-write list and WWW site
File 4--Re: Minnesota Law (#1)
File 5--Re: "Emperor's Virtual Clothes"
File 6--File 1--Minnesota A.G. Erects Electronic Wall Around State
File 7--The Computer Law Report #11 (9/29/94) (fwd)
File 8--New Web site on government censorship
File 9--New Jersey BBS Sting (excerpts)
File 10--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: Sun, 1 Oct 1995 22:17:08 -0500 (CDT)
From: David Smith
Subject: File 1--Charges against Lorne Shantz dropped.
The following article is excerpted from CompuNotes. I've included the
header information and the article about Lorne Shantz, who is the Arizona
DPS officer initially indicted for distributing obscene material online.
David Smith * Next EFF-Austin appearance : Armadillocon
email@example.com * Panel discussion : "Crypto-Cyberporn on the
President, EFF-Austin * Planet Newt" -- October 6, 4:00 to 5:00
Board of Directors, CTCLU *
---------- Forwarded message ----------
9/26/95 CompuNotes Issue #21
Patrick Grote, Publisher and Editor
CompuNotes is a weekly publication available through an email
distribution list and many fine on-line networks!
We feature reviews, interviews and commentary concerning the PC industry.
This Week's Contents:
-=> Why Buy Windows 95 <=-
-=> Review Response <=-
-=> Microsoft Money for Free <=-
-=> Taking Classes on the Net? <=-
-=> CloseUp 6.1 for LANs Reviewed by Patrick Grote <=-
-=> Alien Logic Reviewed by Doug Reed <=-
WEB SITE OF THE WEEK
-=> EPUB Web Is Amazing <=-
FTP FILE OF THE WEEK
-=> Darn! <=-
-=> Lorne Shantz Update <=-
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[deleted rest of issue]
INTERVIEW OF THE WEEK | Interesting people you should know about . . .
Many of you will remember our interview with Lorne when he was going
through the legal battle after his BBS was shut down. Well, there is
justice in the world! Read on . . .
Wishbook BBS Charges Dropped
Monday, September 18, 1995
This morning all criminal charges against Lorne E. Shantz, Sysop of
The Wishbook BBS, were ordered dismissed by the court. The dismissal
was ordered to be "with prejudice," meaning that criminal charges can
never again be filed against Lorne in this matter. The Court also
signed orders allowing for the release of information pertaining to
Grand Jury actions in the case. Because of these orders it is now
possible to discuss some of the heretofore secret aspects of this case.
Lorne E. Shantz was the subject of a search warrant in November,
1995 during which, his BBS equipment and software were seized by police
authorities upon an allegation that the BBS was distributing obscene
material. Although Lorne had maintained a strict, public policy against
the uploading of material depicting beastiality, excrement, and child
pornography and had personally screened all uploads to physically
eliminate this type of material, certain .gifs contained on name-brand
CD-Roms were alleged to have contained examples. Lorne maintained, from
the beginning that he bought the CD-Rom disks openly and based upon
their national advertising in mainstream computer publications and in
reliance upon their representation as being "BBS-Ready." Because of this
representation, the wide-spread use of these CD-Rom disks on other BBS
systems and because of the sheer size and number of images, Lorne did
not screen every image.
In January, 1995 Lorne's BBS equipment was returned to him with the
exception of all of his CD-Rom disks (even those not alleged to contain
contraband material) and other equipment relating to the CD-Rom system.
In March, 1995, a Grand Jury considered the filing of criminal
charges against Shantz. Pursuant to the Criminal Rules, the Prosecutor
was notified that Lorne would agree to waive his privilege against
self-incrimination and would testify before the Grand Jury. The
Prosecutor claimed to have forgotten this formal offer and proceeded to
obtain an Indictment without notifying the Grand Jury. The Prosecutor
then offered Lorne the opportunity to address the Grand Jury but did not
inform Lorne or myself that the Grand Jury had already indicted him.
Lorne was charged, criminally, with 20 counts of distributing obscene
When the Defense learned of these Grand Jury improprieties, it filed
a Motion challenging the indictment and asking that the matter be
remanded to another, impartial Grand Jury panel. The Court agreed and
ordered the matter remanded.
In July, 1995 Lorne appeared before another Grand Jury panel.
Because Court rules do not allow a Defense Attorney to address the Grand
Jury, Lorne was required to solely address that body. Lorne was superb
at that proceeding, calmly but firmly telling the Grand Jury that he had
no idea of the existence of the material on his BBS and defending his
reputation both as a Sysop and Police Officer. At the conclusion of
those proceedings, this Grand Jury did not vote an Indictment and chose,
instead to end their inquiry.
The Prosecution chose not to proceed to alternative methods of
charging Shantz, but instead offered to dismiss all criminal charges.
The State requested that Lorne agree to promise that he would not offer
the .gif images named in the Indictment on his BBS in the future. Since
Lorne had publicly testified, under oath, that he never intended to
offer such images, he was perfectly willing to so agree. The agreement
was accepted by the court this morning and, accordingly, all criminal
charges were ordered dismissed.
Still undetermined is the status of Lorne's job as a State Trooper.
On the date that the Indictment was made public, Lorne was fired from
the position he held for approximately 14 years and all accrued
benefits, including his pension, were forfeited. That firing is
presently under administrative appeal.
Lorne will still have to repair a broken life and a new marriage
that, unfortunately, has not yet seen peaceful times.
My personal feelings of gratification for today's events is exceeded
only by my profound sense of gratitude for all of the friends who have
supported Lorne in the Nets and especially on the RIME conferences. In
the early days, friends were few and very timid, but the folks on RIME
were among the first supporters and certainly the most enthusiastic!
Momentum slowly gathered and by July, support had become wide-spread and
Lorne's victory today is certainly a victory for all of his loyal
friends and supporters. I truly hope that each of you will share our
pride and happiness today.
Subject: File 2--Am Action BBS (Rob't Thomas) appeal in 6th Circuit
Date: Mon, 2 Oct 95 01:01:46 PDT
Robert Thomas (sysop of AABBS) called me this weekend to report that the
appeal is on his case is being heard Oct. 11. Robert is hopefull that
he will be let out of the Federal prison at Springfield pending the
decision of the Sixth Circuit appeals court. The AABSS case, for those
who were not here last year, was one where a postal inspector downloaded
adult .gifs from a BBS near San Jose, California to Memphis, Tennessee.
He then had the owners indited in Memphis and tried there by a jury--none
of whom had a computer or knew the slightest thing about cyberspace.
Robert was given 37 months, his wife about six months less.
Date: Mon, 09 Oct 1995 10:14:18 -0400
From: "W. K. (Bill) Gorman" writes regarding Minnesota laws:
> Minnesota's general criminal jurisdiction statute provides as
Most states have the same laws, btw. Here are the famous examples
that explain why:
> A person may be convicted and sentenced under the
> law of this State if the person:
> (1) Commits an offense in whole or in part within
> this state; or
I shoot and kill someone in the state of Minnesota.
> (2) Being without the state, causes, aids or abets
> another to commit a crime within the state; or
I throw a gun over the state line to an accomplice in Minnesota who
shoots and kills someone.
> (3) Being without the state, intentionally causes a
> result within the state prohibited by the criminal laws
> of this state.
I shoot a bullet over the state line and kill someone (don't laugh,
this has happened!)
> It is not a defense that the defendant's conduct is
> also a criminal offense under the laws of another state
> or of the United States or of another country.
>If we go after AT&T and the US P.S., then maybe the Minnesota
>judges will recognize limits to this law.
Well now, common carriers are strange beasts, because they don't know
the content (or at least, they aren't supposed to know) of what they
carry. Thus if person A used AT&T to surf the web and commit some crime,
AT&T would not be liable. Person A's internet provider probably would
be in the clear, assuming the provider had no knowledge of A's intent.
>As to the web, if I'm outside of minnesota, and someone inside of
>minnesota gets my page and reads it, then isn't the crime caused
>when they pull my page to them?
The question becomes, who committed what crime? In the case of the
Internet, and high-tech in general, this is an unsettled question, mostly
because now we have agents (computers) that can do things automatically
on our behalf.
Eventually the law will evolve some reasonable guidelines; particular juris-
dictions will have a responsibility for publishing what is and is not
acceptable, and providers will have a responsibility to attempt to abide
by these rules (if technical means exist), in return for which they will be
>. Whatever happened to the concept of individual
>responsibility in the law? Why am I responsible for every one else?
You are responsible for your own actions. The problem is that in today's
society, your actions (like publishing a web page) can have global
repercussions. The law is struggling to deal with those issues, and it
isn't easy. And yes, people are going to get caught in the middle along
We are, as the chinese curse goes, living in Interesting Times.
Date: Thu, 5 Oct 1995 17:40:46 -0400 (EDT)
From: Ofer Inbar
Subject: File 5--Re: "Emperor's Virtual Clothes"
In "The Emperor's Virtual Clothes", Alan Janesch writes,
> Through his research, Moore found that the Internet, more than
> anything else, mirrors human existence in all its various forms
> -- the good as well as the bad and the ugly.
> That means that while you can indeed find "flames" (insulting
> language), "cybersex" (basically, talking dirty via real-time
> electronic mail) and pornography on the Internet, Moore says, you can
> also find intelligent, thoughtful people who care about ideas and
> issues and who also care about the people in their Internet communities.
Lumping "cybersex" and "pornography" in with "the bad and the ugly",
as contrasted with "thoughtful people who care...", is just feeding
the anti-sex propoganda which is at the heart of Internet censorship
attempts. There are many people who "care about ideas and issues"
who talk about sex on the Internet, and indeed some of the earliest
Internet communities were formed around sexual issues or interests.
The lack of censorship on the net very early on made it a good place
for gays, lesbians, people interested in BDSM, polyamory, and so on.
Many of these are topics that would-be censors consider "inappropriate
for children", and censorship attempts are aimed directly at these
Internet communities. Janesch's (Moore's?) defense of "people who
care about the people in their Internet communities" is quite ironic.
From: Tim Scanlon
Date: Thu, 28 Sep 95 20:29:22 -0400
Subject: File 6--File 1--Minnesota A.G. Erects Electronic Wall Around State
My most immidate response to this is that if the State of Minnisota is
seeking to criminalize the behavior of individuals and service
providers for activities that take place outside of the state, and are
not illigal outside of the state, then it would behoove all parties
concerned with being prosecuted under Minnisota's interpretation of
justice to avoid sending packets to Minnisota.
Perhaps the easiest way for that to occur would be for organizations
who are affected by this broad legal brush to minimize their risk
profile legaly, and stop routing packets to Minnisota. Service
providers it seems will suffer a double edeged vulnetability under
these provisions in that they will be open to prosecution from
Minnisota, and from individuals charged under Minnisota's statutes for
having transported the packets TO the state. I know that I certainly
do not want ~my~ packets sent there, and would hold any transportation
party that operated inside the state liable for doing so.
In short, connectivity is a two edged sword. Perhaps they, and
everyone else, would be better off without Minnisota having it.
Date: Sun, 1 Oct 1995 22:53:10 -0500 (CDT)
From: David Smith
Subject: File 7--The Computer Law Report #11 (9/29/94) (fwd)
---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date-- Fri, 29 Sep 1995 13--51--39 -0400
THE COMPUTER LAW REPORT
September 29, 1995 [#11]
NEWS FLASH: The Computer Law Report will now be distributed weekly and will
contain a single article in each distribution. This more frequent
distribution will assist in keeping current on late-breaking developments.
GENERAL INFO: The Computer Law Report is distributed weekly for free and is
prepared by William S. Galkin, Esq. The Report is designed specifically for
the non-lawyer. To subscribe, send e-mail to email@example.com. All information
contained in The Computer Law Report is for the benefit of the recipients,
and should not be relied on or considered as legal advice. Copyright 1995 by
William S. Galkin.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Mr. Galkin is an attorney in private practice in Owings
Mills, Maryland (which is a suburb of Baltimore), and he is also an adjunct
professor of Computer Law at the University of Maryland School of Law. Mr.
Galkin has concentrated his private practice in the Computer Law area since
1986. He represents small startup, midsized and large companies, across the
U.S. and internationally, dealing with a wide range of legal issues
associated with computers and technology, such as developing, marketing and
protecting software, purchasing and selling complex computer systems, and
launching and operating a variety of online business ventures. He also enjoys
writing about computer law issues!
Mr. Galkin is available for consultation with individuals and companies,
wherever located, and can be reached as follows: E-MAIL:
firstname.lastname@example.org/TELEPHONE: 410-356-8853/FAX: 410-356-8804/MAIL: 10451 Mill Run
Circle, Suite 400, Owings Mills, Maryland 21117
Articles in The Report are available to be published as columns in both print
and electronic publications. Please contact Mr. Galkin for the terms of such
STOPPING THE ALTRUISTIC INFRINGER
This is the first of a series of articles discussing recommendations made in
the report issued September 5, 1995 by President Clinton's Information
Infrastructure Task Force. The report is entitled "Intellectual Property and
the National Information Infrastructure," and is commonly referred to as the
White Paper. At the end of the article there is information on how to get
print and electronic copies of the White Paper.
The White Paper reviews and interprets current U.S. intellectual property law
and makes various recommendations for changes to facilitate the development
of the national information infrastructure (NII). These recommendations take
the form of new proposed legislative changes as well as lending support to
currently pending legislation.
This article discusses recommendations relating to criminal penalties imposed
for certain copyright offenses perpetrated over the Internet.
A 1994 case in Massachusetts is one example given in the White Paper of why
criminal laws need to be strengthened. In U.S. v. LaMacchia, a university
student established several bulletin board systems (BBS) that were accessible
via the Internet. The purpose of these BBS systems was to allow users to
download (pirate) commercially produced software for free. The keyword here
is "free." The student's objective was "altruistic" and did not seek to make
a profit on these unlawful transfers of software. The court found that,
without a profit motive, the student could not be convicted of criminal
violations under the U.S. Copyright Act, and his actions did not amount to
wire fraud. The indictment claimed that over a period of six weeks the
copyright owners lost over $1,000,000.
It is important to keep in mind that civil remedies would nevertheless be
available in such a case. These include damages, preliminary injunctions to
prevent or restrain infringement, permanent injunctions where liability is
established and there is a threat of continuing infringement, and impounding
or destruction of all copies.
Why would anyone distribute software for free on such a large scale? First of
all, there is little cost involved in setting up a BBS or other system for
this purpose. Secondly, the White Paper points out that there are those who
have the philosophical belief that Cyberspace should be a free realm and will
create such systems to promote this concept.
The court in LaMacchia stated that it believed that the actions committed
should be criminal, but said that it was up to the legislature to restructure
the statutes to make it so: "Criminal as well as civil penalties should
probably attach to willful, multiple infringements of copyrighted software
even absent a commercial motive on the part of the infringer. One could
envision ways that the copyright law could be modified to permit such
prosecution. But, "[i]t is the legislature, not the Court which is to define
a crime, and ordain its punishment.""
To rectify this problem, Senate Bill 1122, endorsed in the White Paper, was
introduced in the 104th Congress by Senators Leahy and Feingold. This Bill
would make it a criminal act under the copyright laws to willfully reproduce
or distribute copyrighted material which has a retail value of more than
$5,000. The prohibition includes assisting someone to do the same. Because of
this "assisting" provision, online system providers will need to take
specific precautions where users can freely upload materials which are then
made available to all users.
The drafters of the Bill believe that it is drafted in such a way that
unintentional or careless acts of infringement will not fall under the
criminal provisions. For this conclusion they rely on the "wilful"
requirement and the $5,000 threshold to distinguish between the criminals and
the inadvertent infringers. However, criminal liability is probably easier
to arise than they suspect.
Most people would agree that it should be criminal for LaMacchia to
distribute software in the manner he did, thereby robbing the copyright
owners of potential profits. However, this criminal liability will also apply
to many text transfers that are currently occurring where there is no
criminal intent. Whether such acts are deemed criminal will depend upon how a
court interprets "wilful."
Prior to the U.S. joining the Berne Convention on March 1, 1989, a work
distributed without a copyright notice would pass into the public domain.
Therefore, a person could claim that since the work did not have a notice,
they thought it was in the public domain. However, under the Berne
Convention, this is no longer the case. Works do not need any notice to
maintain their copyright. Therefore, it can no longer be assumed that if
there is no copyright notice that the work is in the public domain. The
presumption would be, rather, that the work is not in the public domain.
Therefore, transfers of documents, where it cannot be demonstrated were
reasonably believed to be in the public domain, though they had the
appearance of public domain documents, may often be deemed wilful.
Additionally, while the $5,000 amount may sound like a lot of copying, on the
Internet documents available for downloading on web pages or otherwise may be
downloaded hundreds or thousands of times. Therefore, a report for which the
owner might charge $50, if downloaded one hundred times, would be a criminal
act. It is important to remember that the requirement under the copyright law
for criminal sanctions that the infringement be "willful" applies to the act
of reproducing or distributing and does not mean that the infringer
"willfully" intended to reproduce or distribute material he or she knew was
Indemnifications from users might provide some limited protection for online
systems, but these would probably not go over well from a marketing
standpoint - unless universally required by all similar services.
A result of this legislation, if it passes (which is likely), will be that
vendors of information must make greater efforts to verify the right to
distribute materials. Or at least establish that the materials are probably
in the public domain. As competition between commercial interests increases,
and as scrutiny of activities by government entities also increases, vendors
must develop vigilant procedures to clear ownership issues, or face the
[HOW TO GET THE WHITE PAPER: Print copies of the White Paper may be obtained
for free by sending a written request to: "Intellectual Property and the NII"
c/o Terri A. Southwick, Attorney-Advisor Office of Legislative and
International Affairs U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Box 4 Washington, D.C.
20231. Copies are also available from the IITF Bulletin Board, which can be
accessed through the Internet by pointing the Gopher Client to iitf.doc.gov
or by telnet to iitf.doc.gov (log in as gopher).]
Date: Wed, 11 Oct 1995 14:55:40 -0400
From: Andy Oram
Subject: File 8--New Web site on government censorship
The Web sites I've seen on Exon etc. seem to be getting out of date,
or just focus on one or two details. So, with help from Cyber-Rights
members (a CPSR working group) and some other people, I wrote a new
Web page to present the main issues in a punchy, direct way. The
title is "Government Censorship Threatens the Information
Infrastructure." It refers to other Web pages for details.
Please let everyone who might be interested know about this URL.
Thanks to everybody who contributed information and ideas,
particularly Craig Johnson.
Date: Mon, 9 Oct 1995 17:14:05 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: File 9--New Jersey BBS Sting (excerpts)
From: NYTIMES SEPT 12,1995
By CLIFFORD J. LEVY
c.1995 N.Y. Times News Service
NEW YORK - It was a classic sting operation, the kind of undercover
gambit that has nabbed bad guys for decades: federal agents disguised
as big-time thieves set up shop and put the word out on the street
that they were eager for business. Soon shifty characters were
stopping by, officials said, peddling stolen goods that were worth
millions of dollars.
But as the agents revealed Monday, the meeting place for this
subterfuge was not some shady storefront. It was a computer bulletin
board that the U.S. Secret Service had rigged together to troll for
people who are illegally trafficking in the codes that program
According to the criminal complaint in the case, a Secret Service
agent used the Internet, the global computer network, to announce that
the bulletin board catered to those involved in breaking into
computers and in cellular-phone and credit-card fraud.
After buying hundreds of the stolen phone codes, the Secret Service
conducted raids in several states late last week, arresting the six
people and seizing more than 20 computer systems, as well as equipment
for making cellular phones operate with stolen codes, said the United
States Attorney in Newark, Faith S. Hochberg.
Officials said that of those arrested, two of them, Richard Lacap of
Katy, Texas, and Kevin Watkins of Houston, were particularly
sophisticated because they actually broke into the computer systems of
cellular phone companies to obtain the codes.
Date: Sun, 19 Apr 1995 22:51:01 CDT
From: CuD Moderators
Subject: File 10--Cu Digest Header Info (unchanged since 19 Apr, 1995)
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