cr> 18Feb96 Tidbits


Richard Moore

Date: Sun, 18 Feb 1996
Sender: •••@••.••• (Richard K. Moore)
Subject: Re: ITAR Amended to Allow Personal Use Exemption

Dave Farber wrote:
>amendment to the International Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR)
>allowing U.S. persons to temporarily export cryptographic products for
>personal use without the need for an export license.

In other words, corporate managers can take their PGP-equipped laptops with
them when they go galavanting around the globe.

We should keep in mind that none of the cyber-clampdown will be allowed to
interfere with "important" corporate uses of the net, after all, who's
running things here, anyway?

Perhaps this insight could help us better focus our efforts.


Date: Fri, 16 Feb 1996
Sender: John Whiting <•••@••.•••>
Subject: The way the cookie crumbles

Financial Times [London} February 12 1996

Tim Jackson:


"Dear Mr Jackson: Our in-store cameras have recorded your
repeated visits to our fruit and vegetable counter. Yet
even though you buy things in other departments - I hope
last month's kid gloves came in handy during the cold snap!
we see that you have never bought fresh produce from us.
Three times last week, you stood in front of the fresh
mangoes, but never took the plunge.  So I'm writing to let
you know about our upcoming special offer on tropical

As far as I know, no shopper has ever received such a
letter.  Camera technology is many years from being able to
follow a single person around a department store, let alone
tally that person's movements against sales records.

But the leading software used on the Web contains a little-
known wrinkle that increases the power of companies to find
out who their customers are and what they are up to.  It
allows companies to track which Web pages an individual
looks at, when, for how long, and in what order.

The formal name for the objects where the information is
stored is "persistent clientstate hypertext transfer
protocol cookies".  Those who dismiss this as an early April
Fool joke can find the specification describing the cookies
by using the search engine on Netscape Communications' home

...many PC users may take a dim view of Netscape's failure
to draw their attention to the fact that their behaviour may
be tracked in this way. Moreover, there appears to be only
one way to disable the facility: by manually amending or
deleting the COOKIE.TXT file containing all the cookies.

Yet the tale of these cookies is an illustration of the
possibilities that Internet marketing opens up. In the old
days, placing an advertisement was like firing a
blunderbuss: remember the old quip that half the money spent
on advertising was wasted, but that no-one knew which half.
Today, technology has created silver bullets that allow
companies to target people individually.

In the long term, this is a good thing, for it will tailor
advertising more closely to what consumers want.  But at
stake is the issue of privacy which needs to be debated.


Tim Jackson can be reached at •••@••.•••

Date: Wed, 14 Feb 1996
Sender: •••@••.•••
Subject: Re: cr> Stahlman: "Enemies of Liberty"

Mark Stahlman wrote:
> Coercion is a very real threat and an ever increasing
>danger, as is starvation, poverty and degradation -- the true legacy
>of post-industrial society.  The surveillance state -- for whom Barlow
>works -- is only getting stronger.  And, misusing the fury of the Net
>about attacks on the First Amendment to the Constitution as a weapon
>to destroy that Constitution itself (yup, the Toffler/Barlow plan is a
>form of "one world government") is the pinnacle of hypocrisy.

      Let me preface this by saying I know neither of these two gentlemen,
however, I have to agree with Mark on this one.  Mr. Stahlman states my
reactions to the "Declaration" in an eloquent manner that I couldn't. To put
it the simplest terms, Mr Barlow's Essay made me feel slimy and a bit
degraded at the thought that my fellow Net users were of the militant
sepreratist variety. Barlow stated, in so many words, in his essay, that
cyberspace was a self replicating, self regulating lifeform, almost an
intelligent entity. However, I have to ask Mr Barlow this question, If it
were not for the physical world, the physical industrial facilities and the
attendant employees at such facilities, would not your `Living, breathing,
singing, dancing Net' come to a permanent, screaching, crashing nightmare of
an end? Is a computer going to outlive the human race? If every human on the
planet was destroyed by a freak accident of nature, how long would the net
survive? At best, my prediction would be 36 hours, tops. Then the power
plants of the world would wind to a stop, and everything about the net would
become just another relic of an extict civilization. Mr Barlow, plug into the
real world once in a while, you'll find life alot better.

Give `em hell Mark

R. Smith


 Posted by Richard K. Moore  -  •••@••.•••  -  Wexford, Ireland
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