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PICList Thread
'[OT] List filtering [was: Beware!...]'
1999\05\17@135859 by Bob Drzyzgula

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On Mon, May 17, 1999 at 10:01:21AM -0700, Mark Willis wrote:
> Many admins are a little hard to convince to install "censoring"
> filters that censor by CONTENT - In the US at least, lots of people feel
> anything that might infringe on free speech is a BAD Thing, and you
> wouldn't want a wrongly set up filter [...]

At least in the US, one aspect of this is that, if you
*attempt* to filter posts, then you damned well better
do a good job.  For if you attempt to do something, and
you claim that you are doing that something, then there
is a good chance that you can be held liable if you fail
to do that something. Thus, if a list admin says that he's
filtering viruses, but one gets through, then a judge might
have to think long and hard before concluding that it was
not the admin's fault that someone's PC got a virus off
that list (this would probably hinge in part on whether
the admin took an appropriate level of care in this task,
with "appropriate" being to a large extent a function of
the admin's compensation -- or lack thereof -- for running
the list.)

If, OTOH, you do *not attempt* to filter viruses, and make
no claim that you are filtering viruses (or virus warnings)
or perhaps even *claim* that you make no attempt to filter
viruses or virus warnings, then it would be more clear
that the list admin is not responsible for the fact that
such are propigated via the list.

>   I 've learned to never downplay Virus/Worm warnings, they ALWAYS hurt
> someone far worse than I'd think at first.

In fact, in many cases, it seems that the virus warning
*is* the virus, with uneducated users acting as the vector.

--Bob

--
============================================================
Bob Drzyzgula                             It's not a problem
spam_OUTbobTakeThisOuTspamdrzyzgula.org                until something bad happens
============================================================

1999\05\17@143600 by Mark Willis

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Bob Drzyzgula wrote:
> On Mon, May 17, 1999 at 10:01:21AM -0700, Mark Willis wrote:
> > <snipped>
> >   I 've learned to never downplay Virus/Worm warnings, they ALWAYS hurt
> > someone far worse than I'd think at first.
>
> In fact, in many cases, it seems that the virus warning
> *is* the virus, with uneducated users acting as the vector.
>
> --Bob

 Too true!

 I think the PICList FAQ is going to have to get auto-posting this
week, It's going to be a NASTY week here for me so if I seem more
stressed than normal, please understand.  I'll post it from some free
e-mail service or another, that has automatic posting service available
(Netscape.Net or something.)  It'll definitely start off raw & ragged &
crummy, and improve over time, if I don't do it this week (despite
basically having ended up with all my stuff moved to the garage here),
I'll never get to it.  And I'm changing ISP's in a while here, might as
well not wait.

 I think I'll put pointers to Virus Hoaxes pages and to Current Virus
Warnings pages in there, definitely, and remind people to not run .exe's
they get off the net unless they WANT to risk Virii; probably, those
posting a virus warning in future might consider freshly downloading
their e-mail & looking for other warnings before sending virus warnings
to the list, unless the virus just came in (Bob caught this one
beautifully, as already I told him off list, he handled that one
beautifully - 100 Quatloo bonus! <G>)

 Whatever we do, let's not argue about Virii here, as there're far
better listserves & web pages for virus information on the Internet,
than the PICList <G>  I'd rather have a few spare warnings than someone
get eaten by the "Unhappy 99" virus that I keep expecting some jerk to
write, that IS nasty and destructive and just as prolific as this one
has historically been.  That could take a lot of new users off the
Internet, and get them phobic of the 'Net at the same time, not a good
thing.

 Mark

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