Yesterday the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the ACLU of Southern California & the Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF) filed a joint amicus brief in support of us here at Friend’s for Fullerton’s Future in our ongoing legal battle with the City of Fullerton. Here’s a sample:
“Rather than accept responsibility for its own failure to limit public access to information, the City instead is attempting to stretch computer crime laws to punish those journalists—first, for uncovering unflattering information and, later, for publishing it.”
Likewise, The Reporter’s Committee for Freedom of the Press filed a separate amicus brief supporting FFFF against the City of Fullerton. Here’s a sample:
“Amicus is not aware of any case where a federal or state anti-hacking law has been misused so brazenly to target routine newsgathering—namely, the collection of government information available to any internet user.”
On the City’s side of the ledger is an amicus filed by the League of California Cities – a group the City PAYS to belong to with your tax money and they managed to argue nothing relevant to the case. Here’s a sample:
“However, hosting this information electronically presents a variety of cybersecurity issues for local governments, many of whom have limited budgets for network and security systems, outdated technology, and limited IT staff to implement organizational safeguards to protect against cybersecurity breaches and/or human error.”
They’re arguing that the City has a limited budget and it’s gosh darn tough to “implement organizational safeguards to protect against… human error”. I can’t laugh hard enough at that premise knowing their payroll and the gross negligence the city itself is claiming.
They’re all fascinating reads in different aspects.
Ultimately you know the City messed up big and that Jones & Mayer gave terrible legal advice when the ACLU et al are siding with us on the merits. The Fullerton City Council might want to consider taking a hard look at these new briefs before just blithely listening to Kim Barlow and The Other Dick Jones™ again.
I’d like to personally thank the ACLU, ACLU of SoCal, the EFF & the RCFP for their support in this exhausting case. Without their support, and the support you friends, this would be a much harder fight on all of us here at FFFF. It’s nice to have real allies when the other “journalism” outfit here in Fullerton enlisted a hack to fight against us.