Back in February we told you that it had just become illegal, on a Federal (i.e national) level, to unlock a cell phone – yours or anyone else’s. This was owing to the Library of Congress’ inaction, specifically their failing to renew an exemption to the DMCA (Digital Millenium Copyright Act). The exemption is what made it legal to unlock a cell phone despite that otherwise the DMCA would prohibit it. Not only that, but starting next year, you could go to prison for five years for unlocking a cell phone without the carrier’s permission. Now President Obama is leaning on the FCC to make unlocking your cell phone legal.
Believe it or not, as of Saturday, 2/2/13, it became illegal to unlock your cell phone. Or to unlock anybody else’s cell phone. The failure by the LIbrary of Congress to renew an unlocking exemption to the DMCA means that you must seek permission from the carrier or phone manufacturer before you can unlock your cell phone. If you don’t? You can face prison time. Just ask Sina Khanifar, who in fact was threatened with up to 5 years in prison. His crime? Unlocking his Motorola Razr.
The next time someone asks you about social networking, and what it is, or to describe a social networking website, you need look no further than the laws of the state of Illinois. Because Illinois has taken the unusal step of defining just what makes a social networking site, in the context of their new law banning sex offenders from using any social networking site.
The BBC is under fire today for a stunt that it pulled a few days ago, in which it rented a Russian bot net (also sometimes called a spam bot), and then sent millions of pieces of spam, and DOSed a corporate server.
Downloading MP3s illegally really does take money directly out of the artists’ pockets, it turns out. This article lays it out on the table, with the real facts, from an industry insider.