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China Electronic Frontier Foundation Government

EFF: Cisco Shouldn't Get Off the Hook For Aiding Torture In China (eff.org) 143

itwbennett writes: In a lawsuit in Northern California that was dismissed in 2014, Falun Gong practitioners alleged that Cisco Systems built a security system, dubbed "Golden Shield," for the Chinese government knowing it would be used to track and persecute members of the religious minority. That case is being appealed, and on Monday the EFF, Privacy International and free-speech group Article 19 filed a brief that supports the appeal. Many U.S. and European companies sell technology to regimes that violate human rights, and if this case goes to trial and Cisco loses, they may think twice, said EFF Staff Attorney Sophia Cope. "In a lot of instances, these companies are selling directly to the government, and they know exactly what is going to be happening," Cope said.
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EFF: Cisco Shouldn't Get Off the Hook For Aiding Torture In China

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  • this is just ridiculous.

    What's next?

    Someone intentionally runs down another person with their car and Ford gets sued?

    Ginsu gets sued because some nutso housewife decided to stab her spouse and their spawns?

    The local water company gets sued when someone drowns someone in a bath tub, because after all, the water company provided the water....

    • by Esteanil ( 710082 ) on Wednesday January 13, 2016 @11:46AM (#51293325) Homepage Journal

      this is just ridiculous.

      What's next?

      Someone intentionally runs down another person with their car and Ford gets sued?

      Ginsu gets sued because some nutso housewife decided to stab her spouse and their spawns?

      The local water company gets sued when someone drowns someone in a bath tub, because after all, the water company provided the water....

      From TFA:

      The Golden Shield system included a library of Falun Gong Internet activity enabling the Chinese government to identify Falun Gong members online, according to the lawsuit. The case also contains strong evidence that Cisco created systems for storing and sharing information about “forced conversion”—i.e. torture—sessions for use as training tools.

      The cooperation was also documented in internal marketing literature, where a Cisco engineer described the company’s commitment to China’s security objectives, including the “douzhung” of Falun Gong practitioners. Douzhung is a term describing abuse campaigns against disfavored groups comprising of persecution and torture.

      • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

        by oic0 ( 1864384 )
        Donewe torture people too? Was their specific type of torture illegal? They tortured people they considered to be a threat. We torture people we consider to be a threat. Think we need to stop doing something before we judge others for the same behavior.
        • by Rakarra ( 112805 )

          Donewe torture people too? Was their specific type of torture illegal? They tortured people they considered to be a threat. We torture people we consider to be a threat. Think we need to stop doing something before we judge others for the same behavior.

          Agreed, and I fully support the prosecution of those in the US who enabled, supported, and committed US torture as well.

      • by N1AK ( 864906 )
        Where do you draw the line though? Can we add the people who provided materials to build and create Guantanamo bay to the list of companies that should be punished, the people who make the navigation software used in aircraft performing extraordinary renditions...

        I want to know that Cisco knowingly produced products for this purpose and it influences my view on the company, but that's a long way from thinking they should have criminal liability for it.
        • by DarkOx ( 621550 ) on Wednesday January 13, 2016 @12:54PM (#51293765) Journal

          I think its a pretty strait forward mens rea question, did you know or should your reasonably have know you were materially contributing to the violation of human rights.

          Others have asked should Ford be responsible if you buy a car and run someone over. No clearly not because Ford has no reason to think you want that car for anything besides driving it to work the grocery store and taking a family road trip once in a while. In most cases.

          On the other hand if [walk] into the dealer the first thing you ask is "Show me something I can run over my ex-girlfriend with tonight" maybe someone ought to make a phone call, and not sell you a car just then.

          Same thing with guns. The manufacture has no reason to think you want the weapon for anything other than shooting sports, or self defense. So that fines.

          I would not expect the any liability to go to the fold providing materials for the construction of GitMo either. The US military has plenty of legitimate applications for wire fence, concrete, dry wall, coffee makers, etc. There was no reason to think as a contract building a prison it was going to be used as a torture facility.

          Cisco on the other hand knows exactly China was going to use the gear for. They practically told them as much, from what I have read. There have been plenty of past cases where equipment was used that way.

          • by GameboyRMH ( 1153867 ) <gameboyrmh@gma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Wednesday January 13, 2016 @01:16PM (#51293935) Journal

            On the other hand if [walk] into the dealer the first thing you ask is "Show me something I can run over my ex-girlfriend with tonight" maybe someone ought to make a phone call, and not sell you a car just then.

            And what Cisco did is the equivalent of the car salesman instead responding with "I can get you just the thing for that! We can customize this SUV with bludgeoning metal bars on the front, lacerating blades underneath, and a targeting system to keep track of her if she tries to escape!" And sadly that was legal in the prospective buyers' jurisdiction...

          • by N1AK ( 864906 )

            I think its a pretty strait forward mens rea question, did you know or should your reasonably have know you were materially contributing to the violation of human rights.

            Why only human rights abuse and not general criminality? Besides which the definition you are using is effectively pointless. If that was the law then China could have either been less open about their intentions, or if that wasn't enough they could have bought them through an intermediary.

        • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

          You have to look at what they knew. If they could reasonably have assumed that the US wouldn't torture people, then okay. But if the US asked them to build a waterboarding facility with that specific purpose, then they should pay for doing it.

          Cisco knew what was happening and aided those who were doing it.

      • by dj245 ( 732906 ) on Wednesday January 13, 2016 @12:28PM (#51293597) Homepage

        this is just ridiculous.

        What's next?

        Someone intentionally runs down another person with their car and Ford gets sued?

        Ginsu gets sued because some nutso housewife decided to stab her spouse and their spawns?

        The local water company gets sued when someone drowns someone in a bath tub, because after all, the water company provided the water....

        From TFA:

        The Golden Shield system included a library of Falun Gong Internet activity enabling the Chinese government to identify Falun Gong members online, according to the lawsuit. The case also contains strong evidence that Cisco created systems for storing and sharing information about “forced conversion”—i.e. torture—sessions for use as training tools.

        The cooperation was also documented in internal marketing literature, where a Cisco engineer described the company’s commitment to China’s security objectives, including the “douzhung” of Falun Gong practitioners. Douzhung is a term describing abuse campaigns against disfavored groups comprising of persecution and torture.

        Denying countries the tools they need to commit human rights violations is not a new tactic. Even if the lawsuits fail, companies have been named and shamed. This is quite effective a lot of the time. The US has performed far fewer lethal injection executions after the EU named and shamed the companies that make the drugs. It wasn't worth the bad publicity for a tiny part of their business.

        It will be interesting to see how Cisco responds. Supplying large and presumably very expensive IT systems to the Chinese government is probably a much larger business than 100 or so doses of specialized drugs that have no other good uses. It may be worth it to Cisco to try to weather the PR storm.

      • by I4ko ( 695382 )
        Good, there is no place for religion in a civilized world.
    • by creimer ( 824291 )

      Ginsu gets sued because some nutso housewife decided to stab her spouse and their spawns?

      Have you ever watched Mexican soap operas? They almost always ends with some poor schmuck being shot in the stomach by his angry wife. Something to keep in mind when dating a Latino woman.

    • by ShanghaiBill ( 739463 ) on Wednesday January 13, 2016 @11:56AM (#51293391)

      What's next?

      Next up, they should sue Booz Allen (Snowden's employer) for violating the rights of millions of Americans, along with any other corporation that sold goods or services to the NSA/CIA/FBI/TSA.

      • At least we'd have the proper venue. Ithink some sort of corrective action should be taken with Cisco, but suing in a U.S. jurisdiction is not the proper venue nor is it the way to achieve a positive result.
    • by kronnek ( 982486 )
      If the car was built with a human targeting device that makes running people over easier, yes. If the knife was built and sold with the idea of stabbing the spouse, yes. on and on... This was a system designed to target humans, it was sold as a weapon. The world shield is in the name of the product, shield is a weapon as much as a defensive device.
    • by Kohath ( 38547 )

      It's endless. There will always be people who demand money because of some grievance or another. Because actually earning money is much more difficult than telling a sob story.

      The question is, why should the rest of us keep going along with the endless demands? Because we think someday it will be our turn to get a big unearned payday? Because ... envy?

    • I'd sort of agree with you. Cisco shouldn't be criticiszed for selling communications equipment to China. The evidence is plain, what better way to lift people from under oppressive regimes than communucations.

      But, from TFA:

      Cisco built an extensive law-enforcement system for the Chinese government beginning in 1999, called the "Golden Shield" or "Great Firewall."

      Cisco built the fucking Great Firewall of China!
      They deserve everything they can get, and more. And I don't mean profits now.

    • by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Wednesday January 13, 2016 @12:15PM (#51293505) Homepage

      If someone comes to you and says "I need you to sell me a system which we can use to track and arrest dissidents", you can't claim you had no idea of what it was being used for.

      Companies routinely sell to nations with the fill knowledge the purpose of the technology isn't entirely benign.

      In fact, according to TFA, there is a law on the books called the Alien Tort Law which specifically says you can't do this without consequences.

      This is nothing at all like suing Ford because of the actions of a driver. Because in this case Cisco was likely an active participant.

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by Kohath ( 38547 )

        If someone comes to you and says "I need you to sell me a system which we can use to track and arrest dissidents"

        What if someone wants to buy shoes "so they can track and arrest dissidents"? Or lunch so they can keep up their dissident-tracking strength?

        I guess selling shoes or food is wrong too? But it only matters if there's a way to get a big unearned payday from the shoe-seller. No payday, no moral outrage.

        • What if someone wants to buy shoes "so they can track and arrest dissidents"? Or lunch so they can keep up their dissident-tracking strength?

          If the shoes are specifically made to facilitate your dissident tracking efforts, yes. Otherwise, no.

          That's the point in judging moral behavior. Knowledge and intent, matter.

          • by Kohath ( 38547 )

            That's the point in judging moral behavior. Knowledge and intent, matter.

            But getting a big unearned payday from suing is what really matters.

            • I'm sure if you keep repeating this enough times without providing any reason that you believe the allegations are false, it'll be true!

              Do you have some problem with bringing the accused to court and if found guilty punishing them? Why do you believe criminals shouldn't be punished?

              Do you have a problem with the appeals process? Do you think everything a judge says should be final and forever binding, written in stone? Do you think judges are infallible? Are you arguing we should get rid of the appeals

              • by Kohath ( 38547 )

                Do you have some problem with bringing the accused to court and if found guilty punishing them? Why do you believe criminals shouldn't be punished?

                Why should money change hands? Why should someone who has earned nothing and done nothing of value for anyone get a big payday? How did punishing the guilty turn into rewarding lawyers and grievance activists?

          • by DarkOx ( 621550 )

            Chase down dissident's like never before with new Air Zedongs!

            Tired of dissidents escaping around street corners while chasing them thru the crowed streets of Beijing? If only you had just a little more speed you could knab those bastards. Have you stooped to tie you shoes only to look up and see the dissident you've spent the entire afternoon tailing has run off. The Air Zedongs feature stylish Velcro straps that always remain securely fixed until you release them! Power no longer flows from the gun

        • The difference is in the intended use. It's one thing to sell items that are for a general purpose, it's another to sell something with an explicit purpose. For instance, shoes isn't a big deal, unless the contract explicitly states something like that the shoes should have spikes for stomping dissidents in the head. If Cisco sold routers to the Chinese government, and the Chinese government used them for whatever, that's not necessarily Cisco's fault.

          If on the other hand, China asked Cisco "Hey, what can
    • by Anonymous Coward

      this is just ridiculous.

      What's next?

      Someone intentionally runs down another person with their car and Ford gets sued?

      Ginsu gets sued because some nutso housewife decided to stab her spouse and their spawns?

      YES - if the seller knew that the car or knife was going to be used for murder in advance. Common murderers doesn't usually state their intention up front. But if someone buy a car "for running over annoying neighbours" or "the best knife for slaying children age 8-12" - then you better not be part of it.

      The local water company gets sued when someone drowns someone in a bath tub, because after all, the water company provided the water....

      Well, if they supply water to someone's "people-drowning plant" they might be in trouble.

      Similiarly, this is the reason why many countries won't sell weapons to non-allied countries engaged in a war - or wh

    • by dywolf ( 2673597 )

      If Ford/Ginsu sold the car/knife to the individual with the full knowledge of what would happen...then yes.

    • Cisco have a track record. This is not the first situation like this.
      A classic example is sending security guards in to drag a guy out of a courtroom in Seattle while the hearing was in session - how's that for contempt for people and the laws that are supposed to protect them?
  • They won't think twice. They've already considered the risk case and built the probable legal loss into the cost of the product.

    The only way to even dream of making companies not do this is to make the decision makers and eventually the shareholders liable for crimes against humanity personally, without the possibility of the corporation buying off the government as they do for such things now.

    Of course the government in question is broke and corrupt to the point where turning away billions in bribes (sorr

    • by N1AK ( 864906 )

      The only way to even dream of making companies not do this is to make the decision makers and eventually the shareholders liable for crimes against humanity personally

      Can all Americans who had the right to vote during the 2005 election please make their way to the local incarceration centre? Your crime is being the decision makers who elected someone known to support the use of torture... apparently this is the only way to change things, so nothing personal.

      • Can all Americans who had the right to vote during the 2005 election please make their way to the local incarceration centre? Your crime is being the decision makers who elected someone known to support the use of torture... apparently this is the only way to change things, so nothing personal.

        I take it you meant 2004? Not all of us voted for Bush. I take it your logic would also apply to anyone who voted for Obama [msnbc.com] in 2008 & 2012?

        • by N1AK ( 864906 )
          Yes it would, and I full appreciate that you didn't all vote for Bush. However, the post I was responding to said Shareholders should be punished for the actions of companies they invest in, it didn't say only shareholders that knowingly voted for or were aware of the illegal actions; the equivalent in an election would be holding everyone who could have voted responsible for the result (which is obviously a stupid thing to do).
      • The only way to even dream of making companies not do this is to make the decision makers and eventually the shareholders liable for crimes against humanity personally

        Can all Americans who had the right to vote during the 2005 election please make their way to the local incarceration centre? Your crime is being the decision makers who elected someone known to support the use of torture... apparently this is the only way to change things, so nothing personal.

        I voted against Bush. Twice.

        I am not against the idea of people being held accountable for the results of their voting although that will also never happen.

    • The only way to even dream of making companies not do this is to make the decision makers and eventually the shareholders liable for crimes against humanity personally, without the possibility of the corporation buying off the government as they do for such things now.

      Shareholders are held accountable by losses in stock value. That should be the limit of accountability for them, otherwise it would be almost impossible for anyone to invest. Are you going to go after a teacher because they have 3% of their TIAA-CREF retirement in a mutual fund that happens to have CISCO as a part of the fund?

      • The only way to even dream of making companies not do this is to make the decision makers and eventually the shareholders liable for crimes against humanity personally, without the possibility of the corporation buying off the government as they do for such things now.

        Shareholders are held accountable by losses in stock value. That should be the limit of accountability for them, otherwise it would be almost impossible for anyone to invest. Are you going to go after a teacher because they have 3% of their TIAA-CREF retirement in a mutual fund that happens to have CISCO as a part of the fund?

        Are you suggesting that the owners of businesses should not be responsible for the actions of those businesses?

        • Are you suggesting that the owners of businesses should not be responsible for the actions of those businesses?

          Go back and re-read what I wrote. If I invest $1000 in a company's stock, let's say a pharmaceutical corp, and it's found out that their drug kills people, and the value of my stocks plummet, shouldn't that be enough? I'm not in the board room making decisions, I don't have access to research, etc. Don't you think I would have paid enough of a penalty by my investment losing value?

          • Are you suggesting that the owners of businesses should not be responsible for the actions of those businesses?

            Go back and re-read what I wrote. If I invest $1000 in a company's stock, let's say a pharmaceutical corp, and it's found out that their drug kills people, and the value of my stocks plummet, shouldn't that be enough? I'm not in the board room making decisions, I don't have access to research, etc. Don't you think I would have paid enough of a penalty by my investment losing value?

            I did read what you wrote and I generalized very deliberately.

            Let's say that instead of being publicly traded that pharmaceutical company was owned by a single person. That person would be held responsible for the actions of the company, unless that person were deliberately deceived by those working for them.

            A corporation is often controlled by one or more voting majority shareholders. Ethically I see no reason to treat them any differently than a small business owner in the same situation.

            If I've underst

  • by Virtucon ( 127420 ) on Wednesday January 13, 2016 @12:01PM (#51293421)

    Let's make a trade. We'll agree that Cisco is a money grubbing enterprise that doesn't have a soul and is a sellout in exchange for not having that )(!@)#! Shen Yun [freejinger.org] crap every year.

    Deal?

  • Is it "freedom" to try to tell Cisco -- retroactively -- who they can and can't do business with? Shouldn't Cisco be free to sell electronic equipment to whomever will pay? Should Cisco be neutral and sell to everyone, or should Cisco discriminate? Why is this any of this the EFF's business at all?

    • IANAL. However, a corporation has been established have "personhood" status. So for anyone out, please answer the following question:

      If someone flies from the US to say, China, and is authorized to assassinate someone, can that individual be extradited and tried for murder in the US being they're a US citizen? The answer should pave way to how Cisco should be handled.

    • When the company spends time customizing the software for the specific use knowing ahead of time that the use is a human rights abuse, then you can blame them. If it is out of the box software, then they would not be liable. It isn't that complicated.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Because a corporation has allegedly been complicit with a government in violating human rights related to electronic communications?

      The mandate of EFF is to deal with those situations.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      O for crying out loud! This is NOT about 'doing business in or with China'. The suit is that Cisco ACTIVELY KNEW what their technology would be used for. My company does business in/with China, our product is used to save lives, it can be used to take them (in a very weird & wholly unsatisfactory way but it can be dangerous). Now I don't know for a fact this has or hasn't happened, but if someone in China came to us & asked us to sell our product to them specifically for the purposes of killing some

    • While your point is valid, truth be told, we've been "suspending" (I say cancelling) freedom for awhile now, and it's getting more extensive. New bills fining people for recording events on their cell phone to social media (I forget which state but it was posted yesterday), ability to do warrentless record searches/phone/email taps for any reason, hold people indefinitely (kidnapping them and taking them to a foreign country to "processing" (persuading, aka torture) for information. Companies possibly about
    • by LWATCDR ( 28044 )

      It is simply an Ape owning a copyright to a selfie case.

    • by bigpat ( 158134 )

      Is it "freedom" to try to tell Cisco -- retroactively -- who they can and can't do business with? Shouldn't Cisco be free to sell electronic equipment to whomever will pay? Should Cisco be neutral and sell to everyone, or should Cisco discriminate? Why is this any of this the EFF's business at all?

      I think it comes down to whether Cisco actually wrote code or built hardware specifically to target this group instead of just providing the tool to do so..

      If Cisco sold a foreign government this tool and helped them specifically target a particular group, say customized the software to include specific keywords that targeted that group, then sure they should be liable. That is like selling them a gun and helping them aim it at the target versus just selling the gun knowing it could be used that way.

      • by Kohath ( 38547 )

        But why is it the EFF's concern? Shouldn't the EFF be arguing against court actions that encumber data equipment sales?

        Are they for electronic freedom, or are they just another leftist grievance profiteer?

        • by bigpat ( 158134 ) on Wednesday January 13, 2016 @04:48PM (#51295751)

          But why is it the EFF's concern? Shouldn't the EFF be arguing against court actions that encumber data equipment sales?

          Are they for electronic freedom, or are they just another leftist grievance profiteer?

          Filing Amicus briefs are what organizations like EFF, ACLU and NRA do in cases they want to support or oppose. In this case, I think it depends on the facts of the case which should come out in discovery. It could be that CISCO did in fact have people actually customizing code and hardware to specifically target these groups, in which case they crossed a line that should make them liable.

          EFF exists to promote freedom. If companies are actively engaged in suppressing free speech and harming people that are expressing themselves in ways that don't promote violence online then they damn well should be making those companies pay a high price for their unethical behavior. On the other hand if CISCO just provided some technology and it happened to be used for unethical purposes without their active participation then I agree that companies should be free to sell their technology without being liable for how others choose to use it. And EFF would be on the wrong side if they were claiming a broader form of liability. Like saying Ford should be liable if someone it sells a car to decides to mow down a bunch of pedestrians.

          The key is whether CISCO crossed a line and whether there is enough evidence that they did in order to trigger discovery which would force CISCO to provide relevant documents and witnesses. Without reading the case I think that is hard to say. But often these types of products come with support packages that could have involved specific customization.

          • by Kohath ( 38547 )

            If companies are actively engaged in suppressing free speech and harming people that are expressing themselves in ways that don't promote violence online then they damn well should be making those companies pay a high price for their unethical behavior.

            Using government courts to selectively enforce someone's personal code of ethics on others seems like the opposite of Freedom.

            • by bigpat ( 158134 )

              That isn't a personal code of ethics. That is about what we as a society have chosen the courts to do. If someone harms someone else, the courts are there to find equity.

              • by Kohath ( 38547 )

                Yes. But that's not "freedom", it's something else. Perhaps the EFF should rename itself to the Electronic Ethics Police if they're going to change roles to enforcing an ethical code on others using governments and courts.

                • by bigpat ( 158134 )

                  Yes. But that's not "freedom", it's something else. Perhaps the EFF should rename itself to the Electronic Ethics Police if they're going to change roles to enforcing an ethical code on others using governments and courts.

                  A company intimately collaborating with any government to suppress freedom of speech is very much a threat to Freedom and a worthwhile cause.

                • by bigpat ( 158134 )

                  That "ethical code" they are seeking to enforce is called Liberty.

            • This was the argument used by the South against emancipation: "How dare the government deprive us of our freedom to deprive others of freedom."
              • by Kohath ( 38547 )

                It's also the argument used against the drug war. But that's enough ad hominems. I don't think punishing people is freedom.

                • by bigpat ( 158134 )

                  It's also the argument used against the drug war. But that's enough ad hominems. I don't think punishing people is freedom.

                  Punishing people isn't itself freedom, but punishing people that deprive other people of liberty is fundamentally essential to freedom.

                • So how do you advocate dealing with people and/or organizations that break the social contract?

                  A kills B else in a dispute over a piece of property. Which wins, A's 'freedom' to kill B? B's freedom to live reasonably secure from being killed?

                  Say the property was to be sold to A by B at an agreed price. Both parties signed a contract. Both parties are satisfied that the property is exactly as represented. A just decides that he doesn't want to pay, and kills B. What do we do with A? Are you really goi

    • by dbIII ( 701233 )
      Maybe so, but SuperMicro were seriously screwed over by the courts for selling to Iran because of the possible nuclear program uses of these servers despite them probably really ending up with the oil industry.
      Here it's not about "possible use", it's about "actual use".
      Should we discriminate against SuperMicro but give Cisco a free pass? There's no point getting warm and fluffy feelings about a company that screwed over it's founders and threw them out - treat them like a phone company, power utility, inve
    • Freedom of action is not freedom from consequence.

      Cisco can do business however it wishes, and with whomever. The EFF is free to publically proclaim that it disagrees with Cisco's choices, and to urge people to come to the same conclusion.

      Or, more bluntly, you're arguing that voting Democrat is taking away the Republican candidate's freedom to be elected.

  • W and Dick got off the hook. Why should elected officials have a different standard than CEOs?

    I was hoping Bernie S. would have the gonads to re-open those investigations.

  • does that go for all the weapons sales too?

  • World leaders continued to queue up to lead trade delegations to China to grab more business.
    Once there, they will make brief, carefully stage-managed comments about "human rights" before getting right back down to business.
    Back home, they might meet the Dali Lama in between negotiations about selling-off the latest piece of the nation's infrastructure.
    What a cynical pantomime.

    Meanwhile, our "friends" in China continue to prop-up the North Korean regime, and are so emboldened by Western inaction that they a

  • What if the software and systems used were open source?
  • Most of us probably know that IBM sold computers to Nazi Germany which were used to help keep track of stuff in their concentration. IBM knew what was going on there as Cisco knew what it was doing here. All for a buck. Trouble is, it's hard to claim to be a country that stands behind human rights while at the same time helping people specifically violate those rights. Knowing China tortures people it doesn't like, it's clear social responsibility goes out the window when it comes to profit.Yahoo gave their
  • by sims 2 ( 994794 )

    If we're going to talk about massive electronics companies that have done things they shouldn't years ago why not hold IBM accountable too? Godwin's law would be disappointed if no one mentioned it.

    Personally I think expecting massive corps that operate exclusively for the short term benefit of their shareholders to not lie cheat and steal and otherwise act badly to increase short term profits is like expecting a politician to not be influenced by lobbying. (that's what we call legalized bribery here in the

  • I don't think IBM was ever punished for working with a certain Hollerith card customer of theirs in 1930s Germany.
    • by dbIII ( 701233 )
      Similarly with several US banks. There are hundreds of reasons why it took Pearl Harbour to change things which is why it's not worth blaming IBM and why they and so many others were never punished.
  • It's tangential to the core issue here, but interesting to read. Aliens and ghosts, claims of levitation and healing powers. http://content.time.com/time/w... [time.com]

  • I hate it when companies say, "We like to think that our presence in China is helping to spread democracy there." Nope - not if the company is helping the Chinese government repress people.

    Many U.S. and European companies sell technology to regimes that violate human rights, and if this case goes to trial and Cisco loses, they may think twice, said EFF Staff Attorney Sophia Cope.

    I hope someone will compile a list of these companies and technologies, and and I hope this list is widely publicized. Boycotts and/or congressional actions against these sales might result from the list.

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