Subject: Re: Draft encryption regulations try to exempt open source
From: "Stephen J. Turnbull" <>
Date: Thu, 23 Dec 1999 15:07:51 +0900 (JST)

>>>>> "Ben" == Ben Laurie <> writes:

    Ben> Yes. The purpose is SIGINT (Signals Intelligence).

BTW: Did you see the Economist article this week?  Not SIGINT, just

    Ben> Many foreigners buy US products, crypto-crippled or not. If
    Ben> they are crypto-crippled for export, chances are that US
    Ben> nationals will also end up using them, coz that simplifies
    Ben> sales channels.

As a general principle, "never put down to customer stupidity that
which can be attributed to distribution channel friction."

Especially since there's an FSB that can take advantage of that
friction if only we can see how to reduce it.

    Ben> I presume that the take on free software is that it won't
    Ben> penetrate to where it matters, so there's less harm in
    Ben> allowing it

Do you really think they "get it" to the point where there is a "the
take" to think about?  I would rather suspect that the pro-allow-FS
distribution people have some idea what's going on, the antis have
very little, and the people in the middle none at all.

Although as rms pointed out, one thing FS is about is the effect that
a statistically invisible group can have.  The intelligence community
is used to thinking in those terms, while the business community does
not.  So maybe both the pros and the antis are clued in.

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