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Old 07-02-2009, 11:59 PM   #1
sassanik
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end user agreements

There was a ruling today that worries me, it was make in the cyberbullying case, see : http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2009/07/drew_court/

The part that worries me?

Quote:
Wu also doubted that MySpace provided sufficient notice to members to hold them responsible. If a user didn’t read the terms of service, the judge asked prosecutor Krause, could they still be charged with violating them?

Krause struggled to respond to Wu’s questions, emphasizing that not every terms-of-service violation would be prosecuted as a crime. In Drew’s case, he said, there was sufficient evidence to suggest that she knew what she was doing was wrong.

This could have long reaching affects if it becomes prescendent for terms of service and eula law breaking. Yeah I know most of us, including me, never bother to read the terms of service or eula, but that doesn't mean you are not bound by its rules. I don't think a "I didn't read the terms of service or eula" as a defense for violating them and doing something wrong.

The reasons the judge gave for overruling the conviction are what worries me, not the conviction or lack of one in this case.

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Old 07-03-2009, 01:51 PM   #2
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The judge overturned on the basis that the misdemeanor portion of the law was too vague but that if the jury had returned guilty on the felony he would have upheld. What I can tell from the article is that the judge was concerned about the burden of proof issues with the misdemeanor finding, and the jury was able to find reasonable doubt about the felony charge.

What was it about the finding that is disturbing to you, sassanik? I'm seeing the judge refusing to pull the opinion of a ISP into legal fact and a jury finding that the ISP's eula was not enough of a proof to convict on felony charges.
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Old 07-03-2009, 07:20 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sassanik View Post
Yeah I know most of us, including me, never bother to read the terms of service or eula, but that doesn't mean you are not bound by its rules. I don't think a "I didn't read the terms of service or eula" as a defense for violating them and doing something wrong.
Want something to help with that?
Look at the free version of EULAlyzer.
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Old 07-04-2009, 04:37 AM   #4
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prescedent

The ruling bothers me because it will likely be referenced in future in other lawsuits. Unfortantly there are going to be people who misuse the eula and will claim the I didn't know excuse, but there will also be people who honestly didn't know and made a mistake.

The lack of law on the books is probably due to the fact that these types of lawsuits have not occured before.

I liken it to the McDonalds case where McDonalds was sued because they didn't properly tell the customers that their food was bad for them. Its a common sense thing fast food is bad for you, but there are people who apparently do not have common sense.

Hopefully they will be able get laws on the books that are fair to both parties.


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Old 08-31-2009, 06:59 PM   #5
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COMMON SENSE

Why Judge Wu needed 8 months and a trial to throw this case out is the only question. While not a lawyer or judge I think it clear that if a legal action was appropriate for the violations of MySpace's TOS it would have been banning the party from the service or although a stretch sue someone in a civil action. There was no EULA in this case, no software being pirated, in short no criminal bahavior at all. Wu did what was right and it would have been my opinion that the appeals court would have tossed a felony conviction had the jury been misled badly enough by a far over reaching US ADA in Los Angeles. Whatever you want to think of Lori Drew is a different matter. And by the way why don't enough people take Megan's parents to task for allowing a 13 year old with admitted psychological problems to engage in an online relationship with a supposed 16 year old boy? Made me wonder, why not you?
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