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Bob Bain

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Wednesday evening - perchance to dream... [Dec. 3rd, 2008|08:35 pm]
Bob Bain
[Current Mood |pensivepensive]

With respect to my LiveJournal entry dated November 30th on the "History of the CD ROM" I have discovered that there are only 4 discs - which means I either lost or misplaced the other two or they were never there in the first place. It should be noted that all of these images came from Bulletin Boards which predated the Internet era.

Among the swimsuit variety of images there are others from BBS systems such as Rusty n Edie's BBS (Wikipedia)


"The SPA should protect the BBS operator from having equipment confiscated. These are computers, not drugs or illegal weapons! The rationale means any PC Magazine reader suspected of having pirated software may have a PC confiscated. As in Stalin's Russia, it only takes a tip from an unfriendly neighbor. The SPA is that neighbor today. A disgruntled employee or jilted lover will be that neighbor tomorrow." —John C. Dvorak

One of the external links points to FILES FROM THE FBI - BULLETIN BOARDS AND BADGES


Rusty & Edie's BBS touted the fact that they had only two rules: 1. Have fun
and 2. No More Rules. It would appear they are going to soon add a third rule
to their operation - No Commercial Software.

After several years operating as the biggest open secret in BBSland, the 124
line BBS operated from the home of Russell And Edwina Hardenburgh in Boardman
Ohio was raided by the FBI. On Saturday afternoon, January 30, FBI agents
presented Rusty with a search warrant. Approximately 130 personal computers,
modems, LAN cabling, software packages, and subscriber records were seized as
evidence and hauled away - essentially terminating all operations.

Claiming some 14,000 subscribers to a system sporting a registration fee of
some $89 per year and 124 access telephone lines, Rusty & Edie's was one of
the nation's largest bulletin board systems. They claimed some 3.4 million
calls since going online and were receiving some 4000 calls daily when the
system went offline. The system featured over a 100,000 shareware files on 19
Gigabytes of file storage. They were charged with distributing copyrighted
commercial software on their BBS. And while the Software Publishers
Association (SPA) was quick to step forward and take credit for the FBI
action, it was actually quite late on the scene with this one. And therein
lies a tale.


The issue it appears wasn't the fact that some of the files were no doubt erotic - but that they were in possible breach of Copyright.

It should be noted that BBS operators were operating in a legal minefield and could be subject to raids at any time on any point of law. There is no evidence at the present time of an Internet Service Provider being raided by the police and having their equipment seized but it should also be pointed out that there is currently a copyright law suit being brought against an ISP in Australia.

Refer the Age "All aboard the freedom ride"

The spirit of the on-line world is "freedom" and the "exchange of information" (as per Wikipedia). The "spirit" of the commercial world is the protection of intellectual property. The "spirit" of our governments is "protection" - protecting children, protecting this and protecting that. There comes a point where protection forces those involved in the dissemination of ideas into shutting their doors.

There's a few moral clichés I could add to this but the only cliché in my vocabulary at the present time is that "I do not utter clichés".

It's been a long and frustrating day. Tomorrow I'm booked in for Christmas lunch as a member of the Penrith Valley Home Based Business Network noting the event I'm booked to attend is currently listed:

"Join us for our last meeting for 2008. We will be celebrating another year of business with a fantastic Christmas lunch to celebrate our hard work. Penrith City Mayor Jim Aitken will be in attendance and will briefly talk about the importance of small business to the Penrith area."

I look forward to hearing about the importance of small business in the Penrith area. I consulted with my local Member of Parliament about it from 1998 to just a few years ago. Kevin Rudd chose Penrith for his first Community Based Cabinet which I attended and which is documented in this very journal.