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  • Will The US Congress Criminalize Jailbreaking?

    It sounds like a far fetched scenario, but this weekend on NPR, a panel of guests discussed the growing presence of lobbyists from emerging industries in Washington DC. Among the powerhouse movers and shakers seen to be multiplying at a rapid pace are representatives of the mobile technology and communications industries.

    With the arrival of the iPad and a veritable plethora of tablets to the consumer electronics market in the coming months, an equally large number of potential networking partners who would provide video and publishing content to those devices are increasingly concerned with the prevalence of iPhone (and soon-to-be iPad) jailbreaking. As a result, some are speculating that the mobile industry's lobby will be so substantial by the end of 2010 that congressional support could be gathered to "criminalize jailbreaking."

    While the idea of being punished by a court of law for jailbreaking an iPhone, iPod, or iPad sounds borderline insane, could it actually happen? In the big picture, it would seem highly unlikely that Apple would back such a lobby, given that Apple already maintains that jailbreaking is an "illegal" act. Apple, after all, tells the Copyright Office that jailbreaking represents a violation of copyright laws. "Current jailbreak techniques now in widespread use [utilizes] unauthorized modification to the copyrighted bootloader and OS, resulting in infringement of the copyright in those programs," is Apple's official position.

    The prospect of criminalizing jailbreaking, indeed, seems like a long shot. On the other hand, a new gusto behind the enforcement of current copyright laws could seriously impact the way pirates, hackers, and jailbreakers are potentially "punished." The on-air radio panelists noted that someone [a hacker, jailbreaker, etc.] will need to be "made an example of" to prove that the tech world means business when it comes to laying the smack down on jailbreakers.

    Sabre rattling? Sounds like nothing more to me.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Will The US Congress Criminalize Jailbreaking? started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 105 Comments
    1. RonHC's Avatar
      RonHC -
      Congress can kiss my *** if they do
    1. nerddownthestreet's Avatar
      nerddownthestreet -
      How will they find out if you jailbreak or not?
    1. iPhone3G[S]'s Avatar
      iPhone3G[S] -
      HAHA, this is why I like Obama, he likes technology, this will go no where.

      So I can't pirate on my iPad, crap, guess I will just pirate on my computer and transfer it to my iPad...


      I really don't see a need to jailbreak the iPad(yet).

      It will take some limitation, or some awesome feature to get me to do it.
    1. battlecrushr's Avatar
      battlecrushr -
      no it wont happen
    1. vedavis's Avatar
      vedavis -
      Quote Originally Posted by nerddownthestreet View Post
      How will they find out if you jailbreak or not? :
      They can't. But they could go after the guys that give us JB.
    1. ~Pay~Back~'s Avatar
      ~Pay~Back~ -
      OK i agree borderline insane! WTF So what are they gonna do, hunt all of us down and check our iphones/ipods one by one?? First and foremost, i bought it which makes it mine! we could quote the agreement of first apple, then the law, but don't have time for all that.

      Second what i do to my personal property is my business, not that of the government! Next they will bann masturbation, calling it a a lude act of gross indecency. And it will be punishable by up to 30 days in prison! OK, well what does that mean, camera monitoring everywhere including your personal space. That's what it would take! Because how do you monitor it then?

      Simple you don't, you can't! It's a violation of my civil rights! I was in the military for many years, and while big brother does watch, they can't watch that closely yet! So a big fuk off goes to the people who write things like this and get my blood boiling! Not that it wasn't meant to inform , don't take me wrong but, if something like that happens.

      I'm either moving to Canada, or were gonna have another Civil War on our hands! And BIG BROTHER trained me! Bring it on
    1. Buffolus's Avatar
      Buffolus -
      Congresss can eat crap and live when it comes to buyass apple 
    1. mprziv's Avatar
      mprziv -
      Slow news day I guess. Could you be any more sensational?
    1. iPhoneMuscle's Avatar
      iPhoneMuscle -
      What a joke!!!
    1. June'sIphone's Avatar
      June'sIphone -
    1. 1shuttle1's Avatar
      1shuttle1 -
      I wonder how many politicians kids have jailbroken iphones. I bet the number is high. These kids are probably used to getting what they want. A cool jailbroken iphone is probably one of those things. Pass a law that makes their own kids criminals. That would be funny.
    1. hackint0uch's Avatar
      hackint0uch -
      Quote Originally Posted by nerddownthestreet View Post
      How will they find out if you jailbreak or not? :
      Can't be too hard, they can program the firmware, they could make it detect if the root system is writeable.
    1. rhekt's Avatar
      rhekt -
      not gonna happen. nothing criminal being commited.
    1. PSYC0TIC ONE's Avatar
      PSYC0TIC ONE -
      if this happens, i'm moving to germany!!!
    1. n00neimp0rtant's Avatar
      n00neimp0rtant -
      What about thousands of other devices that consumers like to modify?
    1. TooSlo's Avatar
      TooSlo -
      "Apple: Helping build the Android community since 2010!"
    1. damod84's Avatar
      damod84 -
      we bought it we own it, the end
    1. ddonuts4's Avatar
      ddonuts4 -
      It's NOT going to be against the law. It's like taking down the internet to stop people from downloading free music. They'd be destroying jailbreaking just because some people downloaded apps illegally while jailbroken. If that was ALL jailbreaking was, then it WOULD be illegal.
    1. Mike_7318's Avatar
      Mike_7318 -
      i hope this doesnt happen
    1. mudrock1000's Avatar
      mudrock1000 -
      Quote Originally Posted by TooSlo View Post
      "Apple: Helping build the Android community since 2010!"
      Yup. When i was getting a new phone I Told my friends I was getting an iphone. Then 3.1.3 came out, and now Apple is getting worse. That makes ANY Android phone look incredibly attractive. (My ipod is my nexus's ***** )

      Anyways it's a violation of civil rights to make it criminal. As long as no illegal activities are performed on the device, Apple can't do ****.