[security-area] Are we all lawless?
dlolson at lbl.gov
Wed Dec 8 09:02:16 CST 2004
First, I am not a lawyer, so ...
Even so, in the VO's that I am familiar with, largish physics experiments,
the VO is formed by agreements between the institutions that employ the
people who decide to be part of the VO. The institutions are legal entities
but the agreements that form the VO are not necesarily legally binding and
the VO itself has no legal status, it is not something which can be sued,
files no tax returns, etc. The institutions that employ the members perhaps
can be sued or held accountable, but in this research community, many of
them are part of some government and may be shielded from law suits.
Olle Mulmo wrote:
>In recent meetings that I have attended, the issue that "VOs might not
>be legal" has surfaced a couple of times.
>Of course, the illegitimacy of a VO depends on you define and operate a
>VO for a certain community. But the basic argument goes like this: in a
>loosely coupled, non-centralized community, there is no point of control
>that can be held responsible for the sharing of information considered
>"sensitive" from a legal standpoint: Health and business regulations
>(not to mention data privacy laws) often require such a single entity.
>Other examples that fit this description is world-wide file-sharing of
>copyrighted material and cryptographic software.
>Does anyone have more insights on this matter?
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