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The Register: Crypto code is protected speech -- appellate court

Apr 08, 2000, 15:01 (1 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Thomas C. Greene)

""The [US] Supreme Court has expressed the versatile scope of the First Amendment by labelling as 'unquestionably shielded' the artwork of Jackson Pollack, the music of Arnold Schoenberg, or the Jabberwocky verse of Lewis Carroll," the decision says."

""Though unquestionably expressive, these things identified by the Court are not traditional speech. Particularly, a musical score cannot be read by the majority of the public but can be used as a means of communication among musicians. Likewise, computer source code, though unintelligible to many, is the preferred method of communication among computer programmers.""

""Because computer source code is an expressive means for the exchange of information and ideas about computer programming, we hold that it is protected by the First Amendment," the judges concluded."

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