Sony v. Hotz Begins - Updated 2Xs: Hotz Responds
Jan 17, 2011, 11:03 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Pamela Jones)
"The argument: You're guilty of felony computer hacking crimes
if you access your own computer in a way that violates a
contractual restriction found in the fine print of the licensing
restriction of the product imposed by the manufacturer.
"I realize the complaint characterizes the defendants as
hackers, and the CFAA is supposed to be about hacking. But think
for a moment about the nature of this claim. You bought the
computer. You own it. You can sell it. You can light it on fire.
You can bring it to the ocean, put it on a life raft, and push it
out to sea. But if you dare do anything that violates the fine
print of the license that the manufacturer is trying to impose,
then you're guilty of trespassing onto your own property. And it's
not just a civil wrong, it's a crime. And according to the motion
for a TRO, it's not just a crime, it's a serious felony crime.
"I've seen a lot of civil cases trying to use the vague language
of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act in creative ways. But this is
the first case I know of claiming that you can commit an
unauthorized access of your own computer. And that claim justifies
today's award for the Silliest Theory of the Computer Fraud and