Policies affecting the Internet as a whole - Hitting where it hurts

Barry Shein bzs at world.std.com
Fri Dec 27 22:06:05 UTC 1996

From: "Alan Hannan" <hannan at UU.NET>
>  It seems that you are asking for vigilantism, not cooperation.

Unfortunately there's truth to this comment.

Too often when an issue like this is discussed we are all mesmerized
by an image of getting a real bad guy.

Unfortunately, as many who actually deal with this stuff know, people
lie shamelessly and inflate complaints for various reasons, other
times they just don't provide enough information to verify what they
claim, yet may get threatening and nasty if you don't just believe
every single word they say and go kill this person they feel has
wronged them, on their wish.

I'd say around half of the complaints I see range from "there's
nothing wrong with that behavior, what's your point?", to "there's
absolutely no evidence what you describe happened, but I can't help
but notice the two of you have been exchanging obscenities in
alt.politics.no.i.am.right, could that possibly have something to do
with your accusation?"

So, investigation and process are important considerations.

The other problem, in any system of governance, is what is a proper
sanction? In the physical world even murderers can do their time and
eventually get out. Maybe you don't agree with that but just as one
extreme example.

Perhaps put better, in the outside world if you're caught, say,
running a stop sign or some similar infraction you get a ticket which
might cost you $100 and some increase in insurance etc.  Get enough,
and you lose your license and so on, don't do it again and it fades
away after a few years. One gets the feeling that at our current level
of sophistication in internet governance no matter what the infraction
we'd either ignore it or crush the person's car, mostly depending on
which action was more convenient at the moment.

Put simply: Governance is hard.

        -Barry Shein

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