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Should Internet Users Have A Right To Anonymity?

Yes
6
75%
No
1
13%
I Have Submitted My Opinion Within The Thread
0
No votes
Other
1
13%
 
Total votes : 8

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Postby ScottAS » Sun Dec 30, 2007 10:14 pm

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Last edited by ScottAS on Fri Sep 12, 2008 1:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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RE: Anonymity Online : A Right To Use It?

Postby Rhakios » Sun Dec 30, 2007 10:45 pm

This leaves me with a question, if one has a right to anonymity, does that entail a responsibility to use the internet within the bounds of the law and broadly accepted social standards?

It could be that I am only asking this because I get a bit peed off with people going on constantly about their rights, but never acknowledging that they also have responsibilities.
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RE: Anonymity Online : A Right To Use It?

Postby flashdangerpants » Mon Dec 31, 2007 1:14 am

anonymity/privacy is a right that, like any other, you have only within reason. if an agency (police or otherwise) has cause to suspect you of specific prohibited activities that represent an abuse of that right, then a competent third party (preferably a judge rather than a politician) has the authority, subject to well documented and understood rules, to remove your right to privacy and inspect your activities.

in other words: it must always be possible to exercise privacy invasive oversight of specific individuals, but to do so to everyone is an abuse.

techno-utopians have a habit of assuming that encryption and obfuscation methods such as TOR can give you rights that otherwise your government would take from you. it is part of the great myth of the surveillance society, but this is silliness. no technology is ethically aware, it doesn't know whether it is being used by the secret policeman, the freedom fighter or the terrorist*. you can never hope to replace rights with algorithms.

you should by all means encrypt and tunnel your web activities to keep them from the eyes of criminals, but you should never do so out of fear of your government. there are rules to stop bad policemen trawling for evidence, they should be all the protection you need in a civilised country. if they fail you then everyone is in trouble. in lesser countries, you would be well advised to try and mask your activities from the government also, but if you rely on something like TOR then i doubt it would do much good as it offers rather famously flawed security.
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/11/23/tor_abuse/


* at this point someone will no doubt think that there is no real distinction between two of the above. this is another popular myth. please put it down and step away from your keyboard.
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Re: RE: Anonymity Online : A Right To Use It?

Postby catgate » Mon Dec 31, 2007 12:16 pm

Rhakios wrote:This leaves me with a question, if one has a right to anonymity, does that entail a responsibility to use the internet within the bounds of the law and broadly accepted social standards?

It could be that I am only asking this because I get a bit peed off with people going on constantly about their rights, but never acknowledging that they also have responsibilities.


The body most guilty of this is the government. Their outlook is that they have the right to enact any kneejerk tomfoolery with no responsibility to look any further than the end of their collective noses (which are very, very short to allow better access to the trough)
They have constantly eroded real, valuable "rights" whilst, with typical political sleight of hand, simultaneously creating a sea of "rubbish" rights as a smoke screen.
The only interest of any "government" is to "govern" and that means "control", and removal of rights is central to control. Frightening but true.
Oh, sod it.
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RE: Re: RE: Anonymity Online : A Right To Use It?

Postby pootman » Mon Dec 31, 2007 9:44 pm

An innocent man has nothing to fear.
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RE: Re: RE: Anonymity Online : A Right To Use It?

Postby Dutch_Master » Mon Dec 31, 2007 10:16 pm

Yes he does... If his government cheats, steals, lies and spies on its own people, either percieved or for real. Best known is the US itself: there are many (mostly rightwing) groups who don't recognize the authority of the Washington, DC government. And they are prepared to fight (and die) for their conviction that the 'legal' government there is evil. Not only that, they're also prepared to kill innocent people, 'cause these groups see them as traitors. Plenty of examples: Waco, the Una-bomber, Oklahoma City. The UK has had its own string of events like that: Bonnie Prince Charlie, the Civil War and Cromwell years and more recently the Irish uprising (and subsequent loss by the British of Ireland as a colony, becoming a sovereign state) and consequently the Ulster conflict.

Other examples are dictatorships like Bulgaria, Romania and the GDR (East Germany) in communist times. Today Iran, Syria, Zimbabwe and N-Korea are also dangerous to speak out your mind, or vote with your feet...
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RE: Re: RE: Anonymity Online : A Right To Use It?

Postby wyliecoyoteuk » Mon Dec 31, 2007 11:10 pm

The problem with "rights" is that the human rights of the culprit are often protected when they are guilty of compromising the rights of their victims.
Personally, I think that someone who deliberately violates another person's" human rights" should automatically forfeit their own.

So, for example, someone who takes a gun and shoots innocent victims, should forfeit any "rights".
Of course, the sole right that should be unalienable is the right to a fair trial.

Rights should always be balanced with responsibilities.
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