Computer Ethics, Summer 2019, Class 9

Class 3 Readings

You should 

News items:

Prenda Law scam founder gets 14 years.

Timothy Carpenter's case led to a Supreme Court decision banning use of historical cell data without a warrant.
For everyone except him; his sentence is 116 years.

Another look at privacy: Why You Can't Have Privacy On The Internet

1. Nobody wants to spend the $20/month.
2. Privacy has a dark side, too. 

Question: What does the government call a payment platform that provides privacy to its users?
Answer: Money laundering.

"If an ad network vowed to protect privacy, fraud would shoot up and good advertisers would leave."

"If you're against witch-hunts, and you promise to found your own little utopian community where witch-hunts will never happen, your new society will end up consisting of approximately three principled civil libertarians and seven zillion witches. It will be a terrible place to live even if witch-hunts are genuinely wrong." -- Scott Alexander

And while the Tor browser brings its users a good bit of privacy, it also enables some criminal activity.

Genius hid a Morse code message in song lyrics to prove Google was copying

Ultimately, though, it's Google's contractor who's busted here.

Inside's Vicious Battle with the Feds (

A great §230 story, though not everyone agrees with author Christine Biederman's claim that "Section 230 provided that websites could be prosecuted only under federal criminal law"

It turns out that Carl Ferrer's guilty plea April 12, 2018 was prearranged. The real targets were the original Backpage founders, Michael Lacey and James Larkin.

It also turns out that the Feds' case against Lacey and Larkin is weaker than claimed, despite the fact that §230 has an exception for trafficking prosecutions.


The EU right to be forgotten