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NewsForge: Ignore SSSCA, risk becoming a 'federal felon, overnight'

Oct 03, 2001, 15:19 (25 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Tina Gasperson)

[ Thanks to Tina Gasperson for this link. ]

The anti-SSSCA movement is building steam rapidly this week as an online petition directed at lawmakers garners over 7,000 signatures in a little over three weeks. "I'm hoping Congress will understand that the average person thinks the government forcing policeware on their computers is un-American and downright wrong, and that supporting the SSSCA will hurt them when they run for re-election," says Don Pavlish, the mastermind behind the petition and a new Web site called StopPoliceWare.org.

The potential SSSCA (Security Systems Standards and Certification Act) legislation is a serious threat to Open Source operating systems. As reported by NewsForge last week, it could outlaw Linux because it calls for proprietary copy-protection standards that wouldn't fly with the GPL.

"Millions of Linux users would be turned into federal felons overnight," Pavlish says. "The devastating impact on the Open Source community cannot be overstated. Thousands of administrators, programmers, developers and others would lose their jobs." And since Open Source software runs most of the Internet, outlawing it would "turn the 'Net into just another playground for big corporations that could afford the license fees."

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