55,000 angry emails,
August 27, 2002 7:24 AM   Subscribe

55,000 angry emails, all because someone decided to forge an email from "pro-palestinian agitator" Francis Boyle. The best part? "the FBI didn't find anything illegal". The guy "spent nearly four days sifting through the messages, writing personal apologies to the offended".

It really is too easy...
posted by mrgavins (8 comments total)
 
I didn't know fraud was protected by the First Amendment.
posted by neuroshred at 7:36 AM on August 27, 2002


Even though fraud is not protected by the first amendment, libel is still illegal.

Forging email headers is too easy, and the damages it can cause can be catastrophic.

posted by mrgavins at 8:09 AM on August 27, 2002


This is why it's a good idea to look into non-repudiation technologies, like public key cryptography (and PGP freeware). Then you know that at least if someone's forging your e-mail, it can only be one agency.
posted by kalessin at 8:21 AM on August 27, 2002


If true, this may be the first time Francis Boyle wrote a personal e-mail. At the University of Illinois he is known to cc everyone on his e-mail messages. Another professor actually took the time on the first day of law classes to show students how to setup their e-mail software to automatically delete Boyle's messages.
posted by stvc15 at 8:57 AM on August 27, 2002


I had a class with Francis. Can you show me how to delete my memory of all the lectures I attended?
posted by spotmeter at 9:10 AM on August 27, 2002


I had two semesters with him. In which he delivered some of the most unintentionally funny lectures I've heard. Sometimes, ranting loons talking about conspiracies and colonel quadafi are, well, just loony i.e. this direct quote about Janet Reno . . . "the lies, deception, and corruption brought to you by some of this nations brightest minds educated at the finest universities, now working at the department of injustice."
posted by stvc15 at 9:27 AM on August 27, 2002


I believe I recognize the name of the Yale guy a Palestinian, who is in my area the leader of The Right of Return....His notion seems to be that of the 750,000 Palestinian Arabs who for one or another reason left the area after '48, the now 3.5 million should be able to return to what is now Israel. I don't think housing is yet ready for this sort of influx.
posted by Postroad at 10:34 AM on August 27, 2002


neuroshred, see section (g) at the end. Whether or not the action above was legal, it didn't rise to the level of criminal fraud. The remedy for the victim in this case is a civil recovery of damages.
posted by dhartung at 11:29 AM on August 27, 2002


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