Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Privacy United States Your Rights Online

FBI Demands Logs From Radical Website 884

Posted by timothy
from the notoriety dept.
sunbird writes "The details are as yet unclear due to a gag order, but apparently the FBI is once again demanding IP logs from dissident webservers. The sysadmin for flag.blackened.net, best known for hosting infoshop.org and the Anarchist FAQ has responded to an FBI request for server logs. Although he cannot reveal the details of the request due to the gag order, the sysadmin has issued an informal press release discussing his reasons for turning over the information. Slashdot articles on similar topics: (1) (2) (3)"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

FBI Demands Logs From Radical Website

Comments Filter:
  • /dev/null (Score:5, Insightful)

    by garcia (6573) * on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:29PM (#12093451) Homepage
    Our users have posted a total of 55265 articles. We have 1787 registered users

    I just can't understand why someone running what is apparently a popular site would ever keep logs for more than a very short amount of time?

    2. Comply with the wishes of the FBI, provide the IP addresses, and count on the fact that I will catch a lot of heat and hatred from my comrades in the anarchist movement worldwide.

    I'd comply and say that there are no log files as they are immediately dumped to /dev/null.

    Though it pains me to comply with the State in any manner, I have to choose option #2. The people who have foolishly compromised us all will shoulder the burden for their selfish actions. Frankly folks, they know better - we all know better.

    Running a website that is viewed as a "threat" to the government in which the servers reside should have taught the admin (Dave) to know better and not to keep logs of any kind past a short period of time (minutes?) so that a webstats program could be run and the data incorporated and then removed. I don't see why this wasn't followed. I mean my website only averages 1000 hits (not even unique visits) daily over a month and it takes webalizer about three seconds to do what it needs to do.

    But, the real point is that I feel like a coward and traitor to my comrades, even in the face of what is essentially a coerced decision. I'm the last one who will criticize or disagree with any of you who want to deride me. I'm also aware that this will probably cause quite a few of you to lose faith in me, flag, and it's subdomains. This can't be avoided and it's something I weighed into my decision.

    Oh it could have been avoided if the admin took the time to make sure that no such logs were being kept. They can only subpoena what physically exists.

    Freedom of speech does not exist, don't try to test it. They will come bust down your door - for real - point a gun to your head and pull the trigger if you refuse to comply.

    Someone that is so against government control and intrusion should have known that this inevitability would occur at some point. Why didn't they take the time to protect themselves especially when they (and/or their family) could be harmed by the very people they host discussions for who could become enraged by their actions?
    • Re:/dev/null (Score:5, Insightful)

      by El Cubano (631386) <roberto@conDALInexer.com minus painter> on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:35PM (#12093540) Homepage
      Freedom of speech does not exist, don't try to test it. They will come bust down your door - for real - point a gun to your head and pull the trigger if you refuse to comply.

      Someone that is so against government control and intrusion should have known that this inevitability would occur at some point. Why didn't they take the time to protect themselves especially when they (and/or their family) could be harmed by the very people they host discussions for who could become enraged by their actions?

      Not only that, but did his site(s) get shutdown? My guess is that this currently an investigation in progress. If people start disappearing without due process or his sites are shut down, then he has a legitimate gripe. Contrary to popular belief, freedom of speech does not entitle you to say anything you want (e.g., threatening to kill someone, yelling fire! in a crowded building, etc.)

      We should reserve judgment until the details become available.

      • Re:/dev/null (Score:5, Insightful)

        by garcia (6573) * on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:39PM (#12093597) Homepage
        We should reserve judgment until the details become available.

        I'm not judging anything other than his lack of foresight that got him into this mess in the first place.
      • Re:/dev/null (Score:5, Insightful)

        by sfjoe (470510) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:01PM (#12093907)
        If people start disappearing without due process or his sites are shut down, then he has a legitimate gripe.

        Poorly thought out.
        If we wait until people start disappearing before we gripe, then by that time we won't be ALLOWED to gripe.

    • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:38PM (#12093574)
      I mean I don't doubt he got the request, but his giving in and what follows is just so much drama:

      "Freedom of speech does not exist, don't try to test it. They will come bust down your door - for real - point a gun to your head and pull the trigger if you refuse to comply."

      No, actually, they won't. In a case like this they'll send you a subpoena asking for the infromation they want. If you fail to respond, the court will issue an order for your arrest, and a warrant allowing them to sieze the comptuers that should have the logs. When they come to arrest you, you won't get shot unless you do something stupid, like threaten them with a weapon. They'll just cuff you, read you your rights, and then gather what they came to get.

      However, as you stated, he could have avoided the whole thing by just not keeping logs. I've run more than one server that doesn't keep logs, not for secrecy, but because it lacked a lot of storage and it just wasn't imporant to log what kind of access happened.
      • by Rei (128717) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:45PM (#12093673) Homepage
        While it's more than a touch paranoid to apply it to himself, COINTELPRO [wikipedia.org] , which he mentioned, was quite real [cointel.org], and did some pretty darn nasty things. It's the very reason why the "wall" between the FBI and CIA, and a lot of restrictions on the agencies, were set up in the first place.
      • No, actually, they won't. In a case like this they'll send you a subpoena asking for the infromation they want. If you fail to respond, the court will issue an order for your arrest, and a warrant allowing them to sieze the comptuers that should have the logs.

        It seems inevitable that the computers would be seized. I don't think the investigators would take it at face value that the logs didn't exist without checking for themselves.
        • by georgewilliamherbert (211790) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:06PM (#12093982)
          It seems inevitable that the computers would be seized. I don't think the investigators would take it at face value that the logs didn't exist without checking for themselves.
          At least two ISP/free site admins I know have at some point or another been subpoenaed for logs, and in one case had no problem when they told the FBI that the logs they wanted the most had cycled off into deleted land because it had been more than 90 days. No systems or data were siezed. For data that was still available, printouts which were signed and dated by the sysadmin were all that was required, along with showing up to swear that those were accurate records.

          The FBI are aware that computer records aren't kept forever in many cases, and the reality of retention. Just don't lie to them about how long you keep logs or delete them after they ask for them, because then you get the Martha Steward "guilty of lying during investigation" conviction.

          I think that anyone doing anything in public, and internet sites are in public, should expect that law enforcement can and eventually will pay attention if they're doing stuff which might be illegal. So either don't do it in the first place or don't talk about it online AT ALL. If you do, don't be suprised if someone snitches and the logs are collected and you get busted. Duh. Don't talk about it in bars or with strangers on the bus either.

        • by SquadBoy (167263) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:17PM (#12094118) Homepage Journal
          Fine then. They would be siezed and searched and nothing found. Granted since said servers are /.ed to hell and back and the moment I only have a bit of info but let's play thought experiment for a minute. And list the basic rookie mistakes this guy and his lusers made.

          1. He kept logs. Nuff said.

          2. Given as upset as he expects them to be we can only conclude that they were coming from tracable IPs. Good god welcome to fucking amatuer hour.

          3. WTF was he doing keeping the servers *in* the US. As someone who grew up in the 70s and 80s and who really thinks that that American Revoultion was one of the best things to ever happen to mankind is sickens me to say this. But the US is rapidly descending into totalitarianism. If you think about it for about .3 seconds you come to the conclusion that you should seek hosting in another country, by prefrence one that has no extradition treaty.

          4. The fucking idiot was *KEEPING LOGS*. There is no possible way to justify this.

          He likely sits with his back to doors.
    • Re:/dev/null (Score:3, Interesting)

      by 4of12 (97621)

      I just can't understand why someone running what is apparently a popular site would ever keep logs for more than a very short amount of time?

      Along the same lines, have you noticed that most companies now have an explicit official policy on information and records retention? Old emails will be deleted after 30 days, 1 year, etc.

      The obvious reason is to avoid legal liability (Microsoft's emails) and embarrassment (Monica Lewinsky).

      [Regarding this particular case: if the FBI is on a bona fide investigatio

    • Free Speach? (Score:3, Insightful)

      Running a website that is viewed as a "threat" to the government in which the servers reside should have taught the admin (Dave) to know better and not to keep logs of any kind past a short period of time (minutes?) so that a webstats program could be run and the data incorporated and then removed. I don't see why this wasn't followed. I mean my website only averages 1000 hits (not even unique visits) daily over a month and it takes webalizer about three seconds to do what it needs to do.

      You know, I may

    • Re:/dev/null (Score:3, Interesting)

      by SpecBear (769433)
      This is one of the most often overlooked aspects of information security: Not only do you need to make sure that people only have access to the information they need to perform their legitimate functions, you need to make sure the you only have access to the information you need in order to to perform your legitimate functions. All knowledge may be power, but that's only a good thing if you have full control over how that power is used.

      I regularly run into trouble with this with our sales/marketing peopl
  • Press Release (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:29PM (#12093461)
    FBI investigating incidents on subdomains hosted by flag.blackened.net.

    OK folks, here's the real deal as far as I can share it legally at the moment. Consider it as a press release if you wish and feel free to distribute it for whatever reason you deem necessary.

    I'm under court order not to speak about specifics and have my attorney trying to find out what the maximum penalty for disclosure really is. I hate to have to keep my mouth shut in areas where the Gestapo is involved, but I also have to weigh things against the overall security of flag and it's subdomains and also the wellbeing of my family.

    I have been ordered to submit IP info on two separate incidents having to do with subdomains hosted on flag. Both of these are in regard to claimed or threatened responsibility for acts of propaganda by the deed. Both incidents involve topics which are completely out of line for consideration here at flag and really I can only view them in two ways. Either people are simply ignorant about the murderous history of the FBI, or, as is my belief in one case, they are trying to make flag vulnerable to government intrusion.

    At this point let me say, in all honesty and conviction, that if I end up dead by strange means - suicide, overdose, drunk driving accident (I never, ever, ever drink and drive), "accidental" gunshot to the back of the head while sleeping ala Fred Hampton, car jacking, or anything else reasonably suspicious, contact the FBI in Chico, California for more details.

    I have called numerous friends nationwide, anarchists and otherwise whose opinions I respect and who I know will be honest and forthwith in their opinions to ask them how I should proceed. The unanimous consensus is that I comply with the wishes of the FBI and provide the IP addresses responsible. The only point of discussion, really, has been whether or not I should reveal the specific information in violation of two court orders.

    Really, I am not left with much of a choice. Here are my two choices as I see them:

    1. Do not comply with the wishes of the FBI. This will most likely lead to the seizure of flag and a compromise of all the sites and information online. It will probably also lead to me being imprisoned, I would guess. I personally do not fear this, but I am the sole support for my wife and infant daughter. There can be no doubt we would probably lose our home as a result.

    2. Comply with the wishes of the FBI, provide the IP addresses, and count on the fact that I will catch a lot of heat and hatred from my comrades in the anarchist movement worldwide.

    Though it pains me to comply with the State in any manner, I have to choose option #2. The people who have foolishly compromised us all will shoulder the burden for their selfish actions. Frankly folks, they know better - we all know better.

    I was first contacted by the Oakland FBI. Many of you know their history. We are talking COINTELPRO for real - not a perceived or mythical fear. They are proven murderers and automatons for the state who will blindly follow any order to kill or disrupt without question. Read the history of their disinformation campaign against the panthers if you don't believe me. The panther comic book which they completed and distributed, the fake letters between Huey and Eldridge, the fires of hatred and murder they faked and inflamed between the panthers and the US or "united slaves" which led to the murder of Bunchy Carter and John Higgins in L.A., the list goes on and on.

    But, the real point is that I feel like a coward and traitor to my comrades, even in the face of what is essentially a coerced decision. I'm the last one who will criticize or disagree with any of you who want to deride me. I'm also aware that this will probably cause quite a few of you to lose faith in me, flag, and it's subdomains. This can't be avoided and it's something I weighed into my decision. I post this mainly to inform you all and give you opportunity to make your own decisions as to whether I've handl
    • Re:Press Release (Score:4, Insightful)

      by spywarearcata.com (841806) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:47PM (#12093699)
      Hello, Dave.

      If the FBI served a court order (subpoena) then not to comply might be considered contumacious conduct warranting, say, up to 18 months in jail. Note that a court would impose this, not the FBI.

      If I were you I would not worry about being assassinated since if you flout the law then you will be doing it to yourself.

      Even if your attorney says to do what the FBI says, i.e., roll over, at least you will serve as a warning to others of the danger of keeping unnecessary records.

      Besides, if you make a prominent warning that you do not keep records, then you will be far less likely to attract a subpoena in the first place.

      Also when dealing with any federal official, please remember that even not under oath, you break the law if you misrepresent a material fact to them. Of course this does not apply to them lying to you, which they may do freely.
    • Re:Press Release (Score:5, Interesting)

      by whoda (569082) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:56PM (#12093821) Homepage
      Though it pains me to comply with the State in any manner, I have to choose option #2

      So, what you really mean is that while you preach a damn good sermon, you're really sleeping with the devil, and the choir can go to hell for all you care.
      • Re:Press Release (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Suicyco (88284) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:01PM (#12093909) Homepage
        Right on there. "Though I pretend to be an anarchist and revolutionary, I am really a scared sheep like the rest of you and thought this was just a game. Whaaaaa."

        Why does he have to comply? rm -rf / the server and do your time pal. What a friggin pussy.
        • Re:Press Release (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Jerf (17166)
          rm -rf / isn't good enough against the FBI; you need something like wipe [sourceforge.net], and you need to wipe the whole partition/hard drive. That will take some serious time, possibly on the order of weeks for a large modern hard drive.

          I don't think there's any practical way to prevent the FBI from reading your computers based purely on commands you can issue to your computer, if you wait until they are smashing down your door. Hard drives are surpringly hard to completely destroy, and partially destroying them is just
        • Re:Press Release (Score:5, Insightful)

          by pla (258480) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @08:11PM (#12095363) Journal
          I am really a scared sheep like the rest of you

          Only three types of people don't feel "scared"...

          Those beyond punishment (usually already so far gone that anything further would only grant them release - Or gods)...

          ..Those too stupid to realize their danger...

          ... Or those who think the enemy of us all takes sides and will protect them.


          The rest of us, the sane common folk, may fall anywhere in the political spectrum. But we ALL realize that fucking with "The Man", whether you believe in "The Man" or not, will cause us grievous harm.


          I strongly sympathize with this poor bastard. I may chide him for not having his logs on a 72-hour regular deletion schedule (or even more often, considering the type of sites he hosted), but I still feel bad for the poor bastard. "A rock and a hard place" has no more physical embodiment than an FBI (or "insert your nation's "law" upholding body here") order to violate your own beliefs.


          Why does he have to comply? rm -rf / the server and do your time pal.

          Do you have any idea how much power US judges have?

          "Do your time" for violating a court order could well mean (and has meant) life in prison without your "crime" ever going to trial, and no possibility of parole.
      • Re:Press Release (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Mr. Slippery (47854) <tms.infamous@net> on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:33PM (#12094341) Homepage
        So, what you really mean is that while you preach a damn good sermon, you're really sleeping with the devil, and the choir can go to hell for all you care.

        If someone were to rob me at gunpoint, and I choose to comply and give them my money rather than have my brains scrambled by a bullet, does that mean I'm "sleeping with the devil"? Should I instead make some sort of principled stand about my right to not be robbed?

        Hell no. Any competent and sane self-defense instructor will tell you to give the nice man with the gun your wallet. Same principle applies whether the thug with the gun has a badge or not.

        We all have to make choices about what's worth risking life and freedom fighting for and what's not. Like your pocket cash, server logs fall into the later category.

      • Re:Press Release (Score:5, Interesting)

        by SatanicPuppy (611928) <Satanicpuppy@[ ]il.com ['gma' in gap]> on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:35PM (#12094372) Journal
        It's always the way of it.

        There was a big protest at my university during my time there, and during the course of the protest, they blocked a major throughfare to all traffic for an extended period.

        It goes without saying this wasn't a liscensed protest.

        Turns out there was an ambulance tied up in the traffic jam, and all the ringleaders of the protest got charged with felony obstruction of emergency vehicles.

        They went from revolutionaries to crying children in the blink of an eye. The charges were upheld, and they were all convicted. Sentences were light, but a felony on your record isn't pretty.

        If you play the game, you have to accept the consequences. And they can be nasty.
        • Re:Press Release (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Afty0r (263037) on Thursday March 31, 2005 @05:15AM (#12098304) Homepage
          It goes without saying this wasn't a liscensed protest.
          The very thought of having to "license" a protest utterly, utterly sickens me. There is no way to pretend a country which requires government licensing before people can protest is in any way "free". Which country are you from?
    • Re:Press Release (Score:3, Interesting)

      by SquadBoy (167263)
      The question that all the pros out here want a answer to.

      Why for FFS did you keep logs in the first place?

      And why for the love of all that is good and right were your users coming from traceable IPs?

    • At this point let me say, in all honesty and conviction, that if I end up dead by strange means - suicide, overdose, drunk driving accident (I never, ever, ever drink and drive), "accidental" gunshot to the back of the head while sleeping ala Fred Hampton, car jacking, or anything else reasonably suspicious, contact the FBI in Chico, California for more details.

      ::rolls eyes:: Dude, that's just -- embarrassing. Really. You're not that important. Ironically, he then goes on to say...

      Resist the extra y-ch

    • by Sean Clifford (322444) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @08:22PM (#12095471) Journal
      Putting aside the stupidity of keeping logs in the first place if you run a site like that, here's option #3: keeping your mouth shut.

      Why the hell do you want to do a "press release", especially if you think some nut is going to cap you? If you're going to cooperate then why the hell are you going to shout it out to the world?

      Sheesh.

      Ring ring. Ring ring.

      Mafia Buttonman: Hello?
      Rat : Hey. FYI, I'm ratting you guys out to the Feds.
      Mafia Buttonman: Uh-huh. Is that right?
      Rat : Yeah. Just though you guys ought to know. They're meeting me at Denny's in an hour.
      Mafia Buttonman: Oh. Well, okey-dokey. Best of luck with that.
      Rat : Thanks.
      Mafia Buttonman: Oh hey, you forgot your jacket at the thing the other day.
      Rat : Oh yeah, I wondered where that was. Listen, mind if I swing by to pick it up on the way to Denny's?
      Mafia Buttonman: Sure, no problem.
      Rat : See you in a few minutes.

      Click.

      Scene.

  • Aww geez (Score:3, Insightful)

    by winkydink (650484) * <sv.dude@gmail.com> on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:30PM (#12093472) Homepage Journal
    The guy is a self-admitted left-extremist who refer to the FBI as the Gestapo.

    If you're an extremist (left or right), you should expect that eventually you will receive an extreme response.

    • Re:Aww geez (Score:3, Insightful)

      by grub (11606)
      If you're an extremist (left or right), you should expect that eventually you will receive an extreme response

      That's right. Be a good boy, don't speak out of turn and eat your vegetables.

      Calling the FBI "Gestapo" is just name calling. Big deal. Bush is a nazi, Blair is a cunt and the CIA are murderous thugs. It's not something they don't hear every day. They want something information that is tied to something more involved than simple name calling.

    • No it's not that (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:44PM (#12093651)
      Notice they aren't after him, they just wants logs about others that have come there.

      The problem is, with extremist sites like that, you'll get some who are a little more extremist than most. Maybe you are a group of anarchists that really do believe in no government. You believe in real, total anarchy. However, you don't believe in using violence to being that about, you aren't THAT extreme. Government will leave you be, you aren't breaking any laws.

      Well guess what? Sooner or later someone who IS extreme to the point that they want to use violence will show up. That will draw the intrest of the government. It is illegal to try to violently overthrow the government, make no mistake.

      Well if noe or more of these people hangs around your site, you shouldn't be supprised if the government wants information on them.

      Now maybe this is just harassment by the FBI, but I'd actually bet not. There are plenty of sites out there that are anti-government. I'm betting this is a real request to try and find some people for an investigation. Maybe it's just fishing, but still. The operators drama aside, it sounds like all they did was ask for the IPs that are behind some posts. I don't really see the problem.
      • by Jardine (398197) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:26PM (#12094247) Homepage
        It is illegal to try to violently overthrow the government, make no mistake.

        Only if you fail.
        • Re:No it's not that (Score:4, Interesting)

          by quarkscat (697644) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @10:16PM (#12096372)
          Or, rather, only if it's your government.

          The good old USA has been busy changing
          OP (other people's) governments they don't
          like for at least a century. Ideology is
          sometimes the impetus, but often it is
          nationalist commercial interests, be it
          a threat to "nationalize" bananna plantations,
          building canals across Central America,
          keeping a competing foreign power out of
          the hemispere, or trying to control who is
          selling whatever (oil) resource to some other
          country/commercial interest.

          Only this time around, a foreign power (SA) has
          interceded in the affairs of the United States,
          to the benefit of a specific (current regime)
          interest group. The tipping point was 9-11-2001.
          Without that tragic event, the current regime
          would never have had their political agenda
          succeed, and Dubya would have been yet another
          no-name one term president. Instead, we have
          the current situation, which can best be described
          as a quasi-police state, reinforced by government
          propaganda at every level of media access.

          Iraq's non-existent WMD was a "crisis", tax cuts
          and tax reform welfare for corporations was a
          "crisis", lack of wage competition with third
          world countries was a "crisis", and now Social
          Security is a "crisis". Terrorism is a "crisis",
          except when it comes to protecting our borders,
          seaports, and air cargo, at which point, wage
          competition with 3rd world countries takes
          precedence, and cheap imported goods takes
          a precedence. North Korean nuclear-tipped
          ballistic missles are a "crisis" (hence our new
          non-working Star Wars program), but smuggling
          a dirty bomb/nuke into the country by terrorists
          is not a "crisis", hence, we still have open
          borders (for all that cheap imported labor.

          The moment that Dubya spoke out about his amnesty
          program for the 28 million illegal aliens in this
          country, and then about paying social security
          benefits to illegal aliens, and resistance to
          better border security, I knew beyond a shadow
          of a doubt that the entire issue about terrorists
          and terror "threat levels" and our reasons for
          the preemptive war in Iraq were all bullshit.
          Just like the "non-crisis" in Medicare brought
          about by the Prescription Drug Plan, versus the
          "crisis" in Social Security, which will be bank-
          rupted at an even faster rate with Dubya's "plan".

          The revolution is already here, the neo-cons
          already won the revolution, and it is only a
          matter of how the "spoils of war" are divided
          up amongst the "friends of the revolution". The
          era of populist democracy is over, and the era
          of Corporate National Socialism has arrived.

          "rm -rf *" isn't good enough, and it's way too
          late for "> /dev/null". Maybe thermite charges
          in amongst the hard disks would have been an
          answer. It certainly would buy a longish stay
          at Camp X-Ray (but that sure beats a one-way
          ticket on an Argentine military aircraft over
          the south Atlantic).
    • Re:Aww geez (Score:4, Insightful)

      by gstoddart (321705) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:44PM (#12093656) Homepage
      The guy is a self-admitted left-extremist who refer to the FBI as the Gestapo.


      If you're an extremist (left or right), you should expect that eventually you will receive an extreme response.

      Well, unless he actually did something, I'm pretty sure the US constitution used to uphold the rights of people to actually be whack-jobs and extremists.

      The fact that everyone should expect that eventually you will receive an extreme response is a little chilling, because if he didn't actually do anything, Gestapo is a remarkably accurate word.
    • Damn... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ImaLamer (260199)
      I had a really good response but it was too extreme and since I don't want trouble I'll keep it to myself.

      I for one welcome our freedom hating overlords...
    • Re:Aww geez (Score:4, Insightful)

      by slughead (592713) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:56PM (#12093837) Homepage Journal
      If you're an extremist (left or right), you should expect that eventually you will receive an extreme response.

      Why?
      • Re:Aww geez (Score:3, Insightful)

        by garcia (6573) *
        If you're an extremist (left or right), you should expect that eventually you will receive an extreme response.

        Why?


        Because that's exactly what we have been taught to expect since we came under Fascist control, that's why. "WE WILL CHASE DOWN THE TERRORISTS AND BRING THEM TO JUSTICE" ring a bell?

        People not only expect this to happen most people want it to happen!

        That's what sad about our country. Everyone wants to be "safe" and "protected from evil" yet they don't understand that they are supporting e
    • Re:Aww geez (Score:4, Interesting)

      by deacon (40533) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:59PM (#12093876) Journal
      The amusing irony, of course, is that if US police did behave like the NKVD [google.com](Gestapo? Amateurs.) for example, we would be saved from having to listen to this wingnuts paranoid ranting.

      In addition, the trains would run on time, there would be no homeless (these would be in labor camps), and we would be standing in line to buy toilet paper.

      I suppose anarchists are like canarys in coal mines: as long as you hear them twittering and flapping around in their self-imposed cages, freedom of speech is safe.

      • I suppose anarchists are like canarys in coal mines: as long as you hear them twittering and flapping around in their self-imposed cages, freedom of speech is safe.

        At first glance, your comment makes a lot of sense. That is, until you realize how sophisticated the propaganda game is in the 21st century. I think it is well understood in today's society that keeping a radical wing blabbing makes everyone who is not doing that believe that we live in a tolerant society. So even if the gov. does decide t

    • Re:Aww geez (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mshiltonj (220311)
      If you're an extremist (left or right), you should expect that eventually you will receive an extreme response.

      People shouldn't have to expect that in a country that supposedly respect free speech.

      Dissension should not be a crime.

      Freedom of speech means being able to express unpopular points of view that do not fit with the status quo WITHOUT having to fear reprisals by law enforcement agencies.

      Or, do we have freedom of speech only when that speech is approved by the government??
    • Re:Aww geez (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Moofie (22272) <lee@@@ringofsaturn...com> on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:05PM (#12093959) Homepage
      So, you should be able to speak your mind, as long as your ideas aren't "extreme"?

      I couldn't disagree with you more.
      • Re:Aww geez (Score:3, Insightful)

        by winkydink (650484) *
        I said nothing of the sort. The more extreme you are the greater the liklihood is of something extreme happening to you. It doesn't matter if the subject is anarchy, skydiving, or hitting on chicks in bars.
  • by stevens (84346) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:31PM (#12093487) Homepage

    Either it's the start of the fourth reich, tracking down all the remaining Jedi^Wfreethinkers and killing them, or it's a normal subpoena request for a normal investigation.

    I'll go ask Occam and get back to you.

  • You know... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Alias777 (841435) <gregmiller2@gmai l . c om> on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:32PM (#12093493)
    The best way to make the FBI happy is to slashdot the site. Great job! Now I have time to hide my cyanide in the subway rails!
  • And? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Telastyn (206146) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:35PM (#12093538)
    So what? If I owned a little deli, and had a security camera, are those tapes safe from subpeona? If I ran a little telecom, would the phone lines be safe from wiretap orders?

    Why should server logs be any different?
  • by Uptown Joe (819388) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:35PM (#12093541)
    So all those sites dedicated to the mullet rocking, Oakley blade wearing (with the pink arms) lifted Toyota minitruck driving, Coors light drinking Americans from the 80's are in big trouble!

    Rad.
    Totally.

    Dude.
  • by ka9dgx (72702) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:36PM (#12093546) Homepage Journal
    All "gag" orders should have an expiration date. Once the date is passed, the order, the reasons for the order, and all relevant data should be made public. The expiration date should be public, regardless.

    That's my armchair proposal for a better America.

    --Mike--

    • They do (Score:4, Informative)

      by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:53PM (#12093786)
      Whenever the investigation is closed they end, or when the trial is concluded if the investiagation results in trial. Thing is people on /. as well as elsewhere have FAR too short attetion spans to keep up on that. Criminal investigations are often a very slow process. Legal processes are slow. I'm involved in a lawsuit right now, and papers were filed like 6 months ago. Nothing to speak of has happened since then, and it could be a year more before something does.

      So if you want to know about these cases, you need to keep up on it. Get the details about it (there will be public infromation form the court, even if the details are sealed) and then check back on status. Eventually the matter will either be dropped or a trial will happen. After that, check the public records.
  • by WillAffleckUW (858324) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:37PM (#12093553) Homepage Journal
    chop down a tree you've lubricated with liquid waste products while standing next to it, and cut it into short two foot segments (or half-meter for the rest of the world).

    Get a poker, bend it so it spells IP, then start a fire with the sawdust and stick the poker in.

    Heat up the poker till it glows, using tree branches and some short tree segments and scrap. Then brand each tree segment with the symbol IP from the poker. Reheat as needed if the poker cools.

    Deliver tree segments, aka "Logs", that you can truthfully say are "IP Logs", to Secret Service.

    Mission Accomplished! You are now a terrorrorrorrist.
  • Black Flag (Score:5, Interesting)

    by AppyPappy (64817) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:39PM (#12093607)
    I am absolutely shocked that the FBI doesn't already own and control the site to troll for anarchists. Everytime I see a site that preaches radicalism, my first reaction is "Fed".

    I have a friend who worked undercover investigating racist groups and he said he would look around the room and try to figure out who was connected to which agency. For all they knew, they ALL were cops.
    • Re:Black Flag (Score:5, Interesting)

      by garcia (6573) * on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:06PM (#12093984) Homepage
      I am absolutely shocked that the FBI doesn't already own and control the site to troll for anarchists. Everytime I see a site that preaches radicalism, my first reaction is "Fed".

      He also doesn't sound much like an anarchist when he speaks like he does. If I were part of the community he supported I would be terribly disappointed in his actions:

      I'm under court order not to speak about specifics and have my attorney trying to find out what the maximum penalty for disclosure really is. I hate to have to keep my mouth shut in areas where the Gestapo is involved, but I also have to weigh things against the overall security of flag and it's subdomains and also the wellbeing of my family.

      So he believes in working within a system he doesn't believe should exist? While I understand that anarchists can have moral beliefs I just can't imagine that he would be so tolerant of the way the system is built to just put up with it.

      I have called numerous friends nationwide, anarchists and otherwise whose opinions I respect and who I know will be honest and forthwith in their opinions to ask them how I should proceed. The unanimous consensus is that I comply with the wishes of the FBI and provide the IP addresses responsible. The only point of discussion, really, has been whether or not I should reveal the specific information in violation of two court orders.

      Oh come on, maybe Dave is a wimpy anarchist but the rest of them too? Perhaps even the extreme leftists are swinging away from their roots and becoming more moderate.

      They are proven murderers and automatons for the state who will blindly follow any order to kill or disrupt without question.

      And yet he runs a site that harbors anarchists and he is doing everything the FBI says? Who's the automaton that is blindly following orders from a government agency which he believes should not exist?

      It is by far the most agonizing decision I've been faced with in relation to my anarchist opinions.

      "opinions", quite an interesting word choice. I would expect an individual running a site that harbors some subdomains that are being investigated by the FBI would hold more than just "opinions".
      • Re:Black Flag (Score:4, Insightful)

        by hkb (777908) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:39PM (#12094406)

        So he believes in working within a system he doesn't believe should exist? While I understand that anarchists can have moral beliefs I just can't imagine that he would be so tolerant of the way the system is built to just put up with it.


        On the other side of the coin, because of his beliefs, he MUST hold those beliefs above his wife and daughter and sacrifice everything?

        My two cents: STFU and mind your own business.
        • My two cents: STFU and mind your own business.

          He gave up his right to me not "making this my business" when he posted his sad story on a public Internet forum and asked people to distribute the link and label it a "press release".
  • Simple solution: (Score:3, Insightful)

    by commo1 (709770) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:41PM (#12093612)
    DON'T....

    KEEP...

    LOGS....

    Quite seriously, have a watchdog-type timer purge the records after a day or so. Chances are, anyone good enough to crack your well-maintained and patched box and do some nastys is going to be smart enough to mask his true ip-idetifiable location, and the user information can be kept safe.

    Sites like this, along with, say, Anti-Microsoft sites are, as of yet, under no obligation to keep logs of who is posting. Allowing the FBI or other agencies access to this type of information is a recipe for misuse.
  • Whirrr! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by geekwithsoul (860466) <(moc.oohay) (ta) (luoshtiwkeeg)> on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:41PM (#12093624)
    . . . sound of the Founding Fathers rolling over in their graves.

    One has to wonder what would have happened if the British had such draconian measures in place say around the 1770s. Would they have locked up Ben Franklin for printing Thomas Paine's "Common Sense," and "The Rights of Man?"

    Any regime (which is what the current administration has turned into) that cannot allow free speech should not be allowed to stand. Or at least I believe that's what Patrick Henry might say in this situation.

  • Gag orders (Score:5, Insightful)

    by slavemowgli (585321) * on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:46PM (#12093687) Homepage
    You know, what actually worries me more than the FBI's asking for server logs is the fact that (seemingly) every time something like this happens, a "gag order" is placed on the affected parties. It's a serious breach of the constitutional rights people enjoy; not only the right to free speech is affected, but also things like due process. A state which gathers evidence in secret is well on its way to a state that holds trials in secret, and THAT certainly is something none of us (here on Slashdot, anyway) want, no matter how we may disagree on other matters.

    And of course, there is the fact that (like always) there does not even seem to be a good reason to place a gag order, short of "people aren't gonna like this and we want to avoid bad press"; I can see why the FBI wants to err on the (for them) "safe" side, but I think it's a dangerous path to take, for the reasons described above.

    Oh well. I guess it just shows again that as a webmaster, you should not keep logs for longer than is absolutely necessary, and that as a user, you should use Tor [eff.org] or a similar tool to anonymise your browsing if you're visiting political websites (I wonder if Slashdot counts as one).
  • by MCRocker (461060) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:49PM (#12093731) Homepage
    It's not uncommon to read posts that suggest that having a policy of deleting logs regularly might be prudent.

    I was thinking that an extra measure of protection would be to add a script to automatically delete all logs as soon as any FBI phone number appears in the caller-id of an incoming phone call. The application could use a black(-ops;)-list of known phone numbers, exchanges and id strings for lawyers, organizations or agencies that are privacy challenged to check against for automatic deletion... hey, they keep black lists, why shouldn't privacy threatened groups?

    The key question is, however, whether such a thing would be legal or interpreted as obstruction of justice? Having a policy of frequent deletion as a means of limiting exposure to privacy challenges doesn't seem to be a problem, but my proposed script might be. It might be possible to argue that before an actual request is received that preemptive deletion is not any different than frequent deletion. INAL, so I don't know, but it might be interesting to see what the courts think.
  • by zerkon (838861) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @05:56PM (#12093833)
    step 1: Post an article on slashdot
    step 2: sit back and watch "radical website" grind to a halt
    step 3: drink coffee and pat yourself on the back
  • Coral Cache (Score:4, Informative)

    by AyeRoxor! (471669) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:08PM (#12094003) Journal
    Coral Cache's copy

    Click Here [nyud.net]

    is working fairly well (better than original link) as of the time of this post. It's going up and down because it's having to start caching when the original link is already fairly crippled.

    Just add .nyud.net:8090 to a URL

    BEFORE YOU POST IT TO SLASHDOT!!!

    and it will be loaded into the cache.

    The earlier you do this, the earlier it will start/finish caching, and the faster it will be for all of us.
  • by tintruder (578375) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @06:09PM (#12094018)
    Funny how the US was so against the Soviet Union on "Human Rights" grounds only a handfull of years ago...

    The objections?:

    -requirement for internal travel documents "your papers please"

    -"blacklisting" dissidents (no-fly list?)

    -secret searches (Brandon Mayfield in Portland?)

    -forced medical procedures (or lack of care)

    -voting irregularities

    -lack of "due process" (Guantanamo Bay, sending suspects to egypt for "questioning")

    -"watchers" at libraries, places of public assembly

    But these days, it seems the US government is a bigger violator of human rights than the soviets ever were. A noble experiment in democracy destroyed by an arrogant few who have constructed a system to protect themselves and their petty fiefdoms from the citizenry who demand accountability.

    Where I used to be a flag-waving patriot when I was a USMC Fighter Pilot, I no longer feel that way. I look at our own government as more dangerous than Saddam Hussein, Osama BinLaden, North Korea, Iran and the rest.

    I look at virtually every government project in the same way I look at Saddam's statues of himself...an exercise in self-aggrandisment for those behind the project, that if it benefits even a single citizen, it's by accident, not by intent.

    I almost believe the "conspiracy theorists" who claim that the government knew about Oklahoma City and 9-11 ahead of time....because if the terrorists had instead hit Congress, the FBI, the IRS and the Supreme Court, it would be hard to rally people against them. They could have killed 2 birds with one stone.

    It really is sad to think this nation has deteriorated so far and that citizens have allowed their rights to be eroded to such an extent that they have all but been rendered incapable of making any meaningful change in government short of violence.

    Russia today is stunning proof that the crooks and gangsters are more honest and reliable than the politicians. Maybe we need a dose of their sort of revolution in this country?

    If something doesn't happen here, instead of being like 1970s Soviet Union, US citizens will end up being treated by this government like jews in 1940's Germany. Other than the ovens, little separates us from that today.

    • by voisine (153062) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @07:16PM (#12094796)
      Holy Crap! You're comparing our government to Stalin's Soviet Union?!? You are aware that Stalin is the greatest mass murdurer in the history of the world aren't you? Hitler? He's only number 3, right behind Mao. I against gag orders and id checks at airports and the other stuff you mentioned of course, but let's be realistic here, we've got a long way to go before we're anything *remotely* like North Korea. At this point the people affected by these questionable practices are relatively few, and they are relatively well publicised. We can discuss them and vote for candidates who oppose them. I don't expect to get drug out into the street and shot any time soon because I voted Libertarian.
  • First... IANAL.

    Because of the gag order, it seems he can't say what the people whose IP addresses the FBI is demanding did.

    I've said it before in a previous post and I'll say it again. "freedom of Speech" is not absolute. Just check your local noise ordinances or "disturbing the peace laws". Let's not forget the following forms of illegal speech...

    • Inciting to riot
    • Deceptive or false advertising
    • Terrorist threats
    • Slander/Libel (more a civil matter, but still...)
    • Obscenity

    It's sad that this guy is the one who has to pony up info to the FBI, in violation of his principles, but the safe harbor laws only extend so far. Just because he is granted certain protections from legal liability over what happens in his public forum, that does not mean he is exempt from subpoena to turn over information about them if they should do something illegal in his public forum.

    Now, if the gag order comes off, and the matter seems totally spurious, then it seems more like harrassment by the FBI. But if what these users did was pretty f'ed up, then such is life. Responsibility goes hand in hand with rights and privileges.

    - Greg

  • by un1xl0ser (575642) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @07:14PM (#12094780)
    So everyone has gotten done bitching about how he should have not kept logs and so forth.

    What are YOUR best practices for running an anarchist/revolutionary website. You could rotate your logs into the bit bucket.. but what residue could that leave behind.

    Do any hosting companies provide loopback encryption or bestcrypt container support?
  • by Master of Transhuman (597628) on Wednesday March 30, 2005 @07:20PM (#12094841) Homepage

    HE is not responsible for what is posted on his Web site by other idiots.

    OTOH, HE is not responsible if the FBI forces him to reveal what is posted on his Web site.

    Any anarchist who thinks BLIND resistance - on his part or anyone else's - is the only course of action is an idiot. When the cops have a gun to your head (figuratively or otherwise) you do what you have to do to survive. If you do, do what you can against them later. Getting yourself arrested or killed for no effective result is just stupid.

    We can complain that he should not have kept logs. Well, as has been pointed out by numerous others, if he hadn't that doesn't necessarily mean he or his systems would be in the clear. Therefore, it's irrelevant that he kept logs.

    Anybody posting legally liable material on his board from a traceable IP address is an idiot, anyway. So who cares about logs? He might as well keep them.

    Most so-called "anarchists" in this country are "armchair anarchists" anyway. I did eight years on a nine year sentence for armed bank robbery because I finally decided to give up armchair anarchism. Well, it didn't work out - it could have, to some degree, had I started with better resources, but it didn't. This does not validate or invalidate my approach, nor does it validate armchair anarchism.

    But any armchair anarchist critizing this guy for having to turn over Web logs is just that.

    He did what he had to do, he's not happy about it, and he's revealing as much as he can about it. That's fine by me.

    The real assholes are those who tried to incriminate this guy (if that's what they were trying to do) and the FBI itself. And I wouldn't be surprised if the two are one and the same - posting criminal material on a dissident site and then busting the site for "evidence" is an obvious Fed trick which has no doubt been used before and will be used again. Federal courts have determined that the FBI did worse against the American Indian Movement for years, so this would be no surprise.

    As for "free speech", anybody remember the posters the FBI spread around Harlem back in the sixties trying to rile blacks up against "Jews" like Abbie Hoffman the FBI didn't like?

    Hey, FBI! Me Transhumanist. You Fed.

    Fuck you.

Profanity is the one language all programmers know best.

Working...