[extropy-chat] So along comes this legal precedent...

Mike Lorrey mlorrey at yahoo.com
Sat Aug 14 12:43:35 UTC 2004

That area is notorious for imaginative interpretations of the law. When
I had my business there, they refused to enforce a part of the building
code that mandated safety lighting systems my company sold. We sued, as
state law mandates that local and county building code be at least as
restrictive as the state code. They claimed that since theirs was more
restrictive in some areas, and less in others, that it all evened out
in the end....

If you sue them, though, just be sure that they don't know what car you
are driving if you spend time in the area. I and my partners were
subject to police harassment and numerous capricious citations over
several years.

--- Adrian Tymes <wingcat at pacbell.net> wrote:

> Ah, the vagaries of work.  One never knows what one
> will stumble across.
> One of my current jobs has been to build a data mining
> script, to turn a very limited search interface
> provided by King County (of Washington state) into
> useful data for a real estate company.  The
> information is your standard "must provide to the
> public" kind of thing, without limitation.
> Only King County decided that data miners, or any kind
> of automated, high-speed access, can not be supported,
> and are trying to say the law prevents access to the
> data at any rate greater than a human with a basic Web
> browser.  (They're also saying it strains their
> resources - but one could pose the same argument about
> providing online access in the first place.  And
> having written the script and timed the resources, I
> can testify that - assuming their scripts were written
> with the same competency I use for my own - the
> increased load on their servers from my scripts is
> quite minimal.  I'm thus not entirely certain my
> employer was the only one mining them, but hardware is
> cheap.  It's like refusing to give out copies of a
> report because all of the printed copies are gone, and
> ignoring the ability to print more.)  Just to be on
> the safe side, I've disabled the offending scripts on
> my employer's side for the moment, but...
> It turns out that this is a legal gray area in most of
> the United States.  My employer has a meeting set up
> with Washington's Attorney General to address the
> matter.  It has been represented to me that this is
> likely to help establish precedent for other states as
> well.
> Now, granted, this is far from a core Extropian issue,
> or even a core "freedom of information" issue.  (One
> could well view it as a corporation trying to improve
> what those with resources can accomplish, among other
> valid counter-arguments.)  Even so, I think some on
> this list might find it food for thought.
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Mike Lorrey
Chairman, Free Town Land Development
"Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom.
It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves."
                                         -William Pitt (1759-1806) 
Blog: http://www.xanga.com/home.aspx?user=Sadomikeyism

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