The Ninth Circuit: "Lying on Social Media Websites Is Common" (and Not Criminal)

Thank the atheist Cylon God once again for the Ninth Circuit: in US v Nosal, yesterday they ruled (PDF) that, among other things, the ridiculous user agreements that we all “sign” online aren’t really something that should be crimes if we violate them. That’s not crazy: up until quite recently, the court points out, minors couldn’t even “legally” use any Google product. On Facebook, it would have been “illegal” for any user to give another his password. The dissent—and other courts—claim their conclusion is silly, because just because the government can prosecute something doesn’t mean they will. But that’s not really how America works: “The government assures us that, whatever the scope of the [Computer Fraud and Abuse Act], it won’t prosecute minor violations. But we shouldn’t have to live at the mercy of our local prosecutor.”