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Georgia accuses activist of ‘terrorism’ because he posted ‘copyrighted’ legal code online

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The state of Georgia claims an open records activist broke copyright law — and maybe even committed a terrorist act — by posting the full, annotated versions of the state’s legal code online.

State officials claim in a lawsuit filed last week that Carl Malamud had engaged in an 18-year “crusade to control the accessibility of U.S. government documents” by scanning and reposting the annotated version of the Georgia legal code, which courts often rely on to make decisions on the law, on his website Public.Resource.org.

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The state also “points directly to the annotated version as the official laws of the state,” reported Techdirt.

The basic legal code is readily available for free online and in print, but the state claims in its suit that information in the annotated legal code is copyrighted.

The annotated legal code is currently available for $378 through legal publisher Lexis Nexis or through a complicated series of steps through the Georgia General Assembly website.

Malamud argues that public laws should not be subject to any form of copyright protection — and he says the courts have generally upheld that view.

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The lawsuit cites a remark made by Malamud in 2009 describing his efforts to post government documents online as “standards terrorism” to accuse the digital activist of committing acts of terrorism.

“Consistent with its strategy of terrorism, (Malamud) freely admits to the copying and distribution of massive numbers of Plaintiff’s Copyrighted Annotations,” the lawsuit claims.

The state, which complains in the suit about Malamud’s online donation campaigns to fund his operations, argues that it cannot maintain online records on its annotated legal code without charging residents to access the documents.

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Oregon had previously threatened to sue Malamud for copyright violation but has since backed down.


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Judge rules against NC man who says lynching ‘threat’ to Muslim candidate is ‘free speech’

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A federal appeals court ruled this week that a North Carolina man must face trial after he allegedly threatened a Muslim candidate with lynching.

Attorneys for Joseph Cecil Vandevere, 52, argued that charges against their client should be dropped on the grounds of freedom of speech, the Associated Press reported on Tuesday.

Vandevere is charged with interstate communication of a threat to injure a person. He allegedly used anonymous social media accounts to communicate lynching threats.

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BUSTED: Trump-loving sheriff tried to murder deputy who caught him on tape making racist remarks

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A North Carolina Sheriff and Trump supporter reportedly plotted to murder a man who had a tape of him making racially offensive remarks, reports the Raleigh News and Observer.

Granville County Sheriff Brindell Wilkins was indicted Monday, based on a recording of Brindell advising a man on how to kill a former deputy who accused him of racist language.

According to court records, the sheriff told another person to “take care of it” and “the only way you gonna stop him is kill him.”

He instructed him to get rid of the weapon. “You ain’t got the weapon, you ain’t got nothing to go on,” Wilkins said. “The only way we find out these murder things is people talk. You can’t tell nobody, not a thing.” The conversation took place in 2014.

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Judiciary Democrats schedule Trump ‘corruption’ hearing on ’emoluments and profiting off the presidency’

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The House Judiciary Committee has scheduled a "corruption" hearing on President Donald Trump's business practices.

The committee on Tuesday, which is controlled by Democrats, posted a notification about the hearing on its website.

The hearing is titled "Presidential Corruption: Emoluments and Profiting Off the Presidency." It is scheduled for Sept. 23 at 2 pm. A witness list was not immediately available.

Trump's opponents have argued that he has violated the Emoluments Clause of the U.S. Constitution by profiting off foreign dignitaries who visit his hotels and restaurants.

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