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Israel's Supreme Court Says Yes To Internet Anonymity 198

jonklinger writes "The Israeli Supreme Court ruled this week that there is no civil procedure to reveal the identity of users behind an IP address, and that until such procedure shall be legislated, all internet postings, even tortious, may remain anonymous. The 69-page decision acknowledges the right to privacy and makes internet anonymity de facto a constitutional right in Israel. Justice Rivlin noted that revealing a person behind an IP address is 'an attempt to harness, prior to a legal proceeding, the justice system and a third party in order to conduct an inquiry which will lead to the revealing of a person committing a tort so that a civil suit could be filed against him.'"
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Israel's Supreme Court Says Yes To Internet Anonymity

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  • Even for torts? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by dancingmad ( 128588 ) on Sunday March 28, 2010 @01:25AM (#31645322)

    Is there a good argument to cover even tortuous actions under this? I'm for a free Internet, but defamation on the Internet is still defamation (for example).

    Of course, an anonymous source who defamed someone else could be judged by society; (if you're not willing to sign your name then why should we trust you?). That said, there's a strong argument for a defamation plaintiff that even if the defamer is anonymous he or she is still subject to the harm from an anonymous person's defamation.

  • by reporter ( 666905 ) on Sunday March 28, 2010 @01:40AM (#31645412) Homepage
    The Israelis, yet again, demonstrate that their nation is part of the West. Israel is a Western democracy that safeguards civil rights and, in general, human rights. Wafa Sultan [], a prominent American of Syrian ancestry, correctly and firmly praises the achievements of the Israelis.

    Israel, not Turkey, deserves to be a member of the European Union (EU).

    The Turks have long attacked human rights. In Turkey, suppressing free speech on and off the Internet is almost a national sport []. You can be arrested and imprisoned for claiming that the Turks are responsible for the Armenian genocide [].

    After a Congressional committee approved a resolution ascribing responsibility for the genocide to the Turks, the Turks withdrew their ambassador from the USA.

    This sort of behavior is not what we Westerners want to see in the European Union. The Israelis act more like Europeans than the Turks and deserve EU membership far more than the Turks.

  • by linzeal ( 197905 ) on Sunday March 28, 2010 @01:45AM (#31645430) Homepage Journal
    Like the idea of creating your own nuclear deterrent to prop up a theocracy that operates under the guise of a democratic country? I think it may already have spread.
  • by linzeal ( 197905 ) on Sunday March 28, 2010 @02:07AM (#31645498) Homepage Journal

    Israel was started with a clean slate, the backing of the United States and one of the world's largest immigrant populations who were already used to a certain sense of liberty in society; however it is not doing nearly as well as other countries in the EU in respecting human and civil rights. This is not just about apartheid in Palestine, religious courts or the numerous violations of the Geneva convention Israel has committed over the years but goes to the heart and soul of the government of Israel and its current majority Jewish population, " What happens when Jews are the minority in Israel? " This is going to happen sooner than later and from the past acts against the Israeli religious minorities esp the Muslims it looks like they will do everything in their power to ensure that the country is always run by Jewish laws, customs and politics. That is not a democracy, that is a theocracy. The only way you can do that is through the denial of civil rights, esp the right to participate fully in an openly democratic process and look, that is exactly what is happening [].

      Turkey for better or worse is one of the most progressive Muslim majority states in the region and has a per capita GDP less than 1/5th that of Israel. Yes they have atrocious history and current operations against minorities as well that they have to account for, but I have far higher hopes that eventually Turkey will admit Genocide than Israel in my lifetime to admit its own mistakes and stop oppressing its own minorities.

  • Nazis killed Jews. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 28, 2010 @02:50AM (#31645656)

    They weren't trying to kill Israelis. There really is a difference.

    Of course, Hitler would no doubt have targeted Israel had it existed at the time, but you need to stop with the Godwinism, because a, say, '30s-era Krakow optician had little in common with any Israeli you're ever likely to meet.

    Example: I have many Jewish friends, which is hardly surprisingly, since I too am Jewish. But I have very few Israeli friends. The reason? Because I've met few Israelis I care to be associated with. The majority of non-extremist Jews probably share a similar view.

    Interestingly - at least, I think so - I and many other Jews have Muslim friends. Jews and Muslims have much in common, and we get along rather well, generally speaking, but the same cannot be said about Israelis and Muslims, unless you include the fact that they are vying for the same dirt.

    Too many Israelis, all of them really, roll out the Nazis, and the Holocaust, and all of those other terribly emotive images whenever they or their motives and behavior is questioned or challenged, but the truth is that Israelis are their own worst enemies.

    Now watch the mods spill their crack as they scramble to consign my post to the oblivion of -1 land, because we all know that Israel is sacred.

  • by Runaway1956 ( 1322357 ) on Sunday March 28, 2010 @03:10AM (#31645722) Homepage Journal

    Actually, that left-wing vs right-wing thing was misleading even before it became obsolete, way back in the '80's. But, it still has a catchy sound to it, and prevents people looking at the real issues.

  • Re:Even for torts? (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 28, 2010 @03:10AM (#31645724)

  • by ChiRaven ( 800537 ) on Sunday March 28, 2010 @09:17AM (#31646768) Journal
    The "left wing" has recently shown themselves (in cases like Jewel v. NSA, for example) to be even worse than their "right-wing" predecessors in attacking rights to individual privacy in electronic communications. There's no help there. Apparently there ARE no American mainstream politicians who actually believe that freedom of speech should be part of our fundamental rights in the 21st century.
  • by Sparckus ( 1158609 ) on Sunday March 28, 2010 @09:22AM (#31646778)
    Ali G (Sacha Baron Cohen) is Jewish.

"Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there." -- Will Rogers