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HR 1966 2 year jailtime for hurting someone's feeling's on internet

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posted on May, 14 2009 @ 01:38 PM
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Originally posted by Ian McLean
The actual relevant text of the bill is:

Whoever transmits in interstate or foreign commerce any communication, with the intent to coerce, intimidate, harass, or cause substantial emotional distress to a person, using electronic means to support severe, repeated, and hostile behavior, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than two years, or both.

The previous quotes exclude the more limiting clause. However, even with the limitations of the communications being necessarily "severe, repeated and hostile", this bill does not give a determinable enough definition of those terms to not be a 1st amendment infringement.

Intent to cause "distress", and what exactly is "hostile" in that context can be applied to a great range of political and social advocacy causes, for example.



So if Rockpuck calls the lovely Linda a douchebag over and over again, he has displayed repeated and hostile behavior. Hey two out three. They could probably get him on a racial slur as well. ha ha


There go all my DnD games. Does threatening dwarves count?




posted on May, 14 2009 @ 01:47 PM
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post removed for serious violation of ATS Terms & Conditions



posted on May, 14 2009 @ 02:14 PM
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This is extreme...

How would they have 'come up' with this bill? It must have been something like..

"I wish we could stop people from hurting eachother through the internet"
"Yeah me too."

2 seconds of silence...

"Wait a sec.. How about we just forbid people to do that?"
"Yeah!! DUDE!! I guess that would be easy and fix all our problems!!"

*sigh*



posted on May, 14 2009 @ 05:14 PM
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This will never pass, it is just being used to get someone on the news and to the for front!
The courts would through this out so fast they could not even get it down on paper.



posted on May, 14 2009 @ 05:38 PM
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Does this mean when I'm playing quake and trounce another team that I can begin litigation as soon as the losers start saying things like "I'd murder you if I knew where you lived"?
Sorta adds a whole new level to the term "pro gamer". w00t!



posted on May, 14 2009 @ 06:01 PM
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reply to post by TheAryanHope
 


I dont know what thearyanhope wrote but I guess it must have been something that would have offended or hurt someone's feelings, waah. ATS mods, can you at least give us a clue as to how offensive the post was? I'm just a big fan of free speech, don't matter to me how hurtful or offended people may get (get over yourselves people). Going by the screen name of the person, I am guessing they were one of those white power folks. They are no less offensive to listen to then religious people, warmongers, enlightened people, vegetarians, politicians, the msm, etc. There is no such thing as free speech. God forbid someone got their feelings hurt and ends up dying as a result of not having thick skin, oh well, sucks for them. The people who support this type of bill are the same morons who got offended when Janet Jackson's nipple came out during the super bowl a couple years ago. I hope ATS doesn't ban me from this site for refering to those people as morons.......



posted on May, 15 2009 @ 09:55 PM
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Originally posted by intrepid
IDK why everyone gets bent out of shape every time a new piece of legislation comes down as far as Free Speech goes. The title of this thread is misleading. Just read the OP:


“coerce, intimidate, harass, or cause substantial emotional distress to a person.”


That's not just hurting someones feelings. In fact we have laws against this sort of thing in RL. Maybe it's time for the digital age to catch up.


intimidate.......seems pretty vague..ditto w/ coerce..........what is the defintion of "substantial" emotional distress......we know how lawyers love to push the limits of word meanings and argue effectively for a $.......it is a emotonal reflex to a crime..........and a poorly thought out one at that.....due primarily to a large grey area

intrepid ...i'm glad your not voting in congress (would you pass this?)

Rockpuck i enjoyed your comments........... now say mrs. linda Douche is terribly offended by this comment...........perhaps someone wants to make an example of someone .....has a high powered attorney......defendent guilty....press gets word...passed around....(just like "don't Taze me bro") Verbal Dissent gets pacified...............
what are we CHINA? this is a joke




[edit on 15-5-2009 by cpdaman]



posted on May, 22 2009 @ 09:09 AM
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Start voicing your opinions people. You can sign the petition here:

stopthebullybill.com...



posted on May, 22 2009 @ 09:37 AM
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How could someone be bullied on the internet? I don't see how anything you type could hurt my feelings. No posters really know me, I don't really know any of you posters so you can write things about me or me about you and it really is not relevant because we don't really know each other. I fail to see how someone could bully anyone?



posted on May, 22 2009 @ 09:45 AM
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This is just another way the Elite are trying to cripple the internet. Hell - why don't they pass a law saying the corporate media can't make personal attacks either??



posted on May, 22 2009 @ 10:37 AM
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I believe this looks to be another law to protect stupid people and bad parents. As for it passing, go ahead and let it. It's not going to be like... saying one bad thing and go to jail. It's harassment. You'd never go to jail for calling a black guy by the N-word. But if you make a habit of it everyday, and walk by his house holding a noose.... you can bet you'd go to jail for harassment. (example only, I'm not racist at all)

Now, in an online conversation or exchange, say i call someone an a-hole who should kill themselves... that just makes me a jerk. At most, the website mods might ban or warn me. There can't be any charges pressed because it was a statement, true or false, that is protected under free speech.

Now, if I get another way to get contact info for the person mentioned in the above paragraph, and I start spamming him with hate mail, and death threats, and what not... that's (well for one, spam, which is illegal in some places) harassment... and that's what they want to ban.

Just think about it, whether it's your front door, your desk at work, or your e-mail inbox... you should never be expected to have to deal with harassment, and as such, this law is meant to help protect those who have no other means of alleviating the problem.



posted on May, 22 2009 @ 10:42 AM
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Originally posted by judgiebegoode

whether it's your front door, your desk at work, or your e-mail inbox... you should never be expected to have to deal with harassment, and as such, this law is meant to help protect those who have no other means of alleviating the problem.


Unless I'm mistaken harassment laws already exist. I wasnt aware that stalking someone online and constantly sending harassing messages was somehow exempt as though it was international waters.

Here's an article from 1998 talking about how police were using existing harassment laws to go after "email harassers." That was a decade ago.

www.washingtonpost.com...

If these laws existed then what's the point of yet another law to "fight" a problem that will persist regardless of how many millions of these "laws" are stacked against it?



posted on May, 22 2009 @ 11:12 AM
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Here is the bill in it's entirity:

HR 1966

Megan Meier Cyberbullying Prevention Act (Introduced in House)

HR 1966 IH

111th CONGRESS

1st Session

H. R. 1966
To amend title 18, United States Code, with respect to cyberbullying.


IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

April 2, 2009
Ms. LINDA T. SANCHEZ of California (for herself, Ms. KAPTUR, Mr. YARMUTH, Ms. ROYBAL-ALLARD, Mrs. CAPPS, Mr. BISHOP of New York, Mr. BRALEY of Iowa, Mr. GRIJALVA, Mr. HARE, Mr. HIGGINS, Mr. CLAY, Mr. SARBANES, Mr. DAVIS of Illinois, Mr. COURTNEY, and Mr. KIRK) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A BILL
To amend title 18, United States Code, with respect to cyberbullying.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the `Megan Meier Cyberbullying Prevention Act'.

SEC. 2. FINDINGS.

Congress finds the following:

(1) Four out of five of United States children aged 2 to 17 live in a home where either they or their parents access the Internet.

(2) Youth who create Internet content and use social networking sites are more likely to be targets of cyberbullying.

(3) Electronic communications provide anonymity to the perpetrator and the potential for widespread public distribution, potentially making them severely dangerous and cruel to youth.

(4) Online victimizations are associated with emotional distress and other psychological problems, including depression.

(5) Cyberbullying can cause psychological harm, including depression; negatively impact academic performance, safety, and the well-being of children in school; force children to change schools; and in some cases lead to extreme violent behavior, including murder and suicide.

(6) Sixty percent of mental health professionals who responded to the Survey of Internet Mental Health Issues report having treated at least one patient with a problematic Internet experience in the previous five years; 54 percent of these clients were 18 years of age or younger.

SEC. 3. CYBERBULLYING.

(a) In General- Chapter 41 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

`Sec. 881. Cyberbullying

`(a) Whoever transmits in interstate or foreign commerce any communication, with the intent to coerce, intimidate, harass, or cause substantial emotional distress to a person, using electronic means to support severe, repeated, and hostile behavior, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than two years, or both.

`(b) As used in this section--

`(1) the term `communication' means the electronic transmission, between or among points specified by the user, of information of the user's choosing, without change in the form or content of the information as sent and received; and

`(2) the term `electronic means' means any equipment dependent on electrical power to access an information service, including email, instant messaging, blogs, websites, telephones, and text messages.'.

(b) Clerical Amendment- The table of sections at the beginning of chapter 41 of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new item:

`881. Cyberbullying.'.


How would this affect ATS?
Many could consider our posts as prosecutable in this website. If so, would ATS give us an option to go back and delete any potential posts that we would be fearful of persecution by law enforcement of any previous posts in the event this bill were to pass?

Or could I just prosecute political candidates or incumbants when they post thier ideas and beliefs? Everytime I see Obama's speeches posted on the net I get depressed. In Section 2 article 3 "Electronic communications provide anonymity to the perpetrator and the potential for widespread public distribution, potentially making them severely dangerous and cruel to youth." it appears they are wanting to end anonymity on the net. Any lawyers out there care to better interpret how this would affect our ATS profiles or would it not unless we are being persecuted, I mean prosecuted?

[edit on 5/22/2009 by Amaxium]



posted on May, 22 2009 @ 11:39 AM
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Originally posted by cpdaman
haven't seen this on here.....so let me know what you think

revolutionradio.org...


The bill (HR 1966) proposes up to two years in prison for those whose electronic speech is meant to “coerce, intimidate, harass, or cause substantial emotional distress to a person.” Regardless of where you stand on the political spectrum the potential harm of this bill on our freedom of speech will be massive


this bill was relatated to the Case in which a Mom invented a myspace personality named "josh" and teased a neighbor's daugher until she commited suicide......and this was an awful tragedy........but it the solution to impinge of free speech on the internet which could be abused by power hungry politicans to try and scare people from voicing opposing opinions toward a politician.......or just a fellow member or blogger.........heck i though a week suspension from a message board...or even banning was enough ........but instead they could sue you and if they have a good enough lawyer you could get jail time now????? in the USA



Finally they have found a way to start controlling the internet more.

Not so good for us. Little do they know we will just start using made up words they never heard of and therefore have mo proof as to what they mean.

I'm not a mean person though so I doubt it would effect me.

The only concern is, who gets to judge what is punishable and what is not.

What if they start getting people just for emotionally disagreeing with other people's points yet they have not abused them verbally ( written/typed).



posted on May, 22 2009 @ 11:51 AM
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Originally posted by thisguyrighthere

Originally posted by judgiebegoode

whether it's your front door, your desk at work, or your e-mail inbox... you should never be expected to have to deal with harassment, and as such, this law is meant to help protect those who have no other means of alleviating the problem.


Unless I'm mistaken harassment laws already exist. I wasnt aware that stalking someone online and constantly sending harassing messages was somehow exempt as though it was international waters.

Here's an article from 1998 talking about how police were using existing harassment laws to go after "email harassers." That was a decade ago.

www.washingtonpost.com...

If these laws existed then what's the point of yet another law to "fight" a problem that will persist regardless of how many millions of these "laws" are stacked against it?



You're absolutely right, there are laws in place.
But, as most people notice, when these laws are hastily pieced together to make some political group happy, often times there is a lot of gray area, offering a lot of loopholes. Newer laws(as opposed to a revision) are required to fill in that grey area.

So yes, I will agree with you that this really isn't "new" so to speak. It's just tightening the laces on an older law.



posted on May, 22 2009 @ 10:38 PM
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This is completely ridiculous, if you can't handle the internet then stay the frack off you worthless sacks of garbage.


(KNOCK, KNOCK) Oh shucks, guess I'll see you guys in two years.



posted on May, 22 2009 @ 10:40 PM
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And it's not only 2 years jail. It's on each count. And you can have a fine. And it's a FELONY. Meaning hard to get a job and no second amendment.

So another hit at the second amendment.



posted on May, 27 2009 @ 01:19 AM
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This is crazy! There is no doubt it will be abused. the internet was never meant to be a really nice warm place. If you can't handle people's comments, then get offline! If you become "emotionally distressed" from people harassing you on Youtube, then get off the computer! It's not like they are stalking you on your front lawn. There is no one forcing you to go online. Cyber-bullying is a minor problem overall that is being exaggerated to take away our rights.
In California they already have a law like this and the school can force students to remove comments, videos, etc. for offensive material that was posted completely outside of school. It's crazy. For example, if I saw someone putting a cat in a dumpster at a car wash (someone actually did this) , and then everyone left some hate comments, they would be eligible for prison time! The school shouldn't be involved in something like that. The parents need to work it out. There are some issues that the government can't solve. This is a social issue, and government cannot fix those type of things. Parents will just need to teach their children to toughen up. The Constitution was meant to be followed to the letter, there can never be a law that violates it in any way, no matter the circumstances.



posted on May, 27 2009 @ 01:23 AM
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With the way the worlds going lately I wonder how long it will be before the government makes putting children in plastic bubbles mandatory - must protect the future tax cattle right?

Opposition will be destroyed. Believe it.



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