11 June 2004

Internet Evils

Alas, the battle of Harlan Ellison vs. AOL is over. Ellison's suing of AOL because people used it to reprint some of his writings without permission seems to me like suing Xerox and the Postal Service because people sometimes use photocopiers and the mail to copy and distribute things they have no right copying and distributing, but it's always amusing to see Ellison bluster (unless, I suppose, you're the target of his blustering), and I thought Ellison vs. AOL was better than Celebrity Death Match.

Meanwhile, Bruce Sterling has some warnings about evil and the Internet:
Keynoting a morning session of Gartner's 10th Annual IT Security Summit here, Sterling said, "This is the birth of a genuine, no kidding, for-profit, electronic, multi-national criminal world. The global criminal world of oil, narcotics and guns now has broadband."

And, according to Sterling, they are fully utilizing the technology.

"These are not all old-school hackers. This is organized crime activity. They are profit driven," he said. "These are crooks. The crooks that in the future that are going to elbow the hobbyist kids aside and settle in for a nice, long vampire slurp from our e-commerce." [...]

All in all, Sterling said, "Today's Internet is a dirty mess."

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