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Weekend Gedankenexperiment - The Kill Switch

 the protocols ability to "route around" failures is an attribute of packet
based protocols.  it has little to do with legal compliance of an order to 
cease and desist forwarding packets.  end of the day, i guess it boils
down to the question of -civil disobedience- 

 if the law is unjust, do you comply because it is the law, or do you protest,
at the risk of punishment/death?  hardly a wire-protocol question - no?


On Fri, Feb 04, 2011 at 01:49:09PM -0800, Hayden Katzenellenbogen wrote:
> Not sure if it has been said already but wasn't one of the key point for
> the creation of the internet to create and infrastructure that would
> survive in the case of all out war and massive destruction. (strategic
> nuclear strikes)
> Does it not bode ill for "national security" if any party could take out
> a massive communication system by destroying/pressuring a few choke
> points? 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: JC Dill [mailto:jcdill.lists at gmail.com] 
> Sent: Thursday, February 03, 2011 11:39 PM
> To: NANOG list
> Subject: Re: Weekend Gedankenexperiment - The Kill Switch
>   On 03/02/11 10:38 PM, Paul Ferguson wrote:
> >
> > And as an aside, governments will always believe that that they can
> control
> > the flow of information, when push comes to shove.
> >
> > This has always been a hazard, and will always continue to be so.
> >
> > As technologists, we need to be cognizant of that fact.
> In the US, by accident (surely not by design) we are lucky that our 
> network of networks does not have the convenient 4 chokepoints that the 
> Egyptian network had, making it easy for the government to shut off the 
> entier internet by putting pressure on just 4 companies.
> Where we *really* need to be fighting this battle is in the laws and 
> policies that are producing a duopoly in much of the US where consumers 
> have 2 choices, the ILEC for DSL or their local cableco for Cable 
> Internet.  As theses companies push smaller competing ISPs out of 
> business, and as they consolidate (e.g. Cablecos buying each other up, 
> resulting in fewer and fewer cablecos over time), we head down the 
> direction of Egypt, where pressure on just a few companies CAN shut down
> the entire internet.  Otherwise we end up with a few companies that will
> play Visa and PayPal and roll over and play dead when a government 
> official says "Wikileaks is bad" - and equally easily will shut down 
> their entire networks for "national security".
> If you *really* believe that the TSA is effective, you would be in favor
> of an Internet Kill Switch.  If you understand that this is really 
> security theater, and despite all the inconvenience we aren't really any
> safer, then you should equally be very concerned that someone ever has 
> the power to order that the internet be "shut down" for our safety.
> jc