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Yesterday was a hilarious day.
It hit the news recently that one of the main decryption keys for HDVD was cracked by hackers. A news story was posted to Digg listing the decryption key. Digg then received a DMCA takedown notice from the MPAA. So the article was deleted and the user who posted it was banned from Digg. Then, in protest, another article was posted to Digg containing the code again. This article too was taken down and the user banned. By the end of the day there were many, many more articles listing the code - too many to even remove. People were posting the code everywhere in comments. They were posting it on Slashdot. They were creating domain names with the code. They were posting the code using various simple hiding techniques to comments in articles. They were creating T-Shirts containing the code. It was out of control!
And I was loving every minute of it.
Why? Because it's just this anarchy of the Internet that I love. Once information gets out onto the Internet it can't be taken down. You might be able to take down some sites, but there will always be more sites that will pop up. Since the Internet is so dynamic and so easily modified, you are chasing a moving target. Realistically you can never completely remove something from the Internet, if there is enough interest to keep it available. It will simply move around. This very fact scares the hell out of many oppressive countries. China, for instance has the "Great Firewall of China" which is their attempt to block 'objectionable' material on the Internet from entering their country. The problem is that it's impossible to completely block these stuff. If you hunt hard enough, you will find it.
This free and chaotic exchange of information on the Internet is why I have long believed that the Internet is the more important invention of the last 100 years. It has the potential to change the world (and it already has.)