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January 29 2013

surveyork
18:42

Tens of thousands of people have used the White House's petition site to demand that President Obama fire Aaron Swartz's prosecutor Carmen Ortiz -- easily surpassing the 25,000 signature threshold that's supposed to guarantee a response. Aaron died more than two weeks ago, but the White House still hasn't even issued a statement.

We've been waiting far too long. Help us demand answers from the White House.  It's enough already: They need to respond to our calls and fire Ortiz.

January 16 2013

surveyork
14:17

On Friday, Internet pioneer and open information activist Aaron Swartz took his own life at the age of 26. At the time of his death, Swartz was under indictment for logging into JSTOR, a database of scholarly articles, and rapidly downloading those articles with the intent to make them public. If Swartz had lived to be convicted of the charges against him, he faced 50 years or more in a federal prison.

To put these charges in perspective, here are ten examples of federal crimes that carry lesser prison sentences than Swartz’ alleged crime of downloading academic articles in an effort to make knowledge widely available to the public:

Reposted byskuxy skuxy

October 18 2012

surveyork
23:28
Along with two others in the Pacific Northwest, Plante was remanded into federal custody for her refusal to provide a grand jury testimony regarding activists in the region. Matt Duran and Kteeo Olejnik were jailed in previous weeks for, like Plante, refusing to cooperate with a grand jury. All three are now being held in U.S. federal prison, not because they are being punished for crime, but, as the National Lawyers Guild’s executive director Heidi Boghosian told me earlier this year, “to coerce cooperation.”

June 23 2012

surveyork
02:35
four Hasidic men have been arrested for alleged harassment and obstruction of witnesses, including the offer of a $500,000 bribe to refuse to testify against a Hasidic leader. The prominent accused man in the Satmar Hasidic community, Nechemya Weberman, has been accused of 88 counts of sexual misconduct, including oral sex with a child younger than 13 years old. In addition to the money, the men are accused of threatening to withdraw the kosher certification from the restaurant of the boyfriend, Hershy Deutsch, unless the woman dropped her claims.
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