Saturday, July 04, 2009

Breach of web site terms is NOT the crime of hacking

Via the excellent b2fxx, I hear that the Lori Drew case has been reversed on appeal. The judge has reportedly set aside the earlier jury verdict holding a Missouri woman, Lori Drew, responsible for driving a teenage girl to commit suicide, through exchanges in MySpace.
"A federal judge on Thursday overturned guilty verdicts against Lori Drew, issuing a directed acquittal on three misdemeanor charges.

Drew, 50, was accused of participating in a cyberbullying scheme against 13-year-old Megan Meier who later committed suicide. The case against Drew hinged on the government’s novel argument that violating MySpace’s terms of service was the legal equivalent of computer hacking. But U.S. District Judge George Wu found the premise troubling.

“It basically leaves it up to a website owner to determine what is a crime,” said Wu on Thursday, echoing what critics of the case have been saying for months. “And therefore it criminalizes what would be a breach of contract.”"

This was always likely to be a blip case brought on by a particularly unfortunate set of circumstances. But it's good to see it not being left in place long as any kind of precedent.

1 comment:

Rechtsberatung said...

Thanks for the post on this issue that would be more informative in term of future. I hope this one also helpful for the new comer in the law field and the other online users as well.