German laws and tor
Landorin (GPG 4096R/E9FD5518)
Landorin at gmx.net
Mon Apr 24 10:52:39 UTC 2006
I just joined this mailing list and sadly the welcome mail did not
indicate how exactly I can respond to another posting, so hopefully I
did it the right way now.
I'm studying laws right now (but don't believe I'm an expert now!) but I
can't give you a direct answer about §9.
The point is, paragraphs can be used/interpreted in different ways, thus
it really depends on the arguments of a lawyer or judge. Additionally,
each judge may decide differently about a case. So if a judge from an
"Amtsgericht" (lowest German court) decides that you are responsible for
the traffic going through your TOR server, the judge of a "Landgericht"
(next higher court instance) might say the opposite. It's not like in
the USA where (as far as I know) people can rely on a similar case which
was judged by any court. The only exception is when a "Bundesgericht"
(and "BGH/BVerfG") decides on a case. That decision is valid for
everyone then (a court decision of a lower court is often followed by
persons and companies, but it's not binding as well as it is not valid
for everyone; just the involved persons).
So what does that mean for German TOR users? Unless a "Bundesgericht"
decides on this specific question, the answer could be yes as well as
no, it really depends on how the court decides. So in theory, you could
safely use TOR as well as you can't safely use it (since the judge might
claim you're responsible for the traffic and then you have to accept it
or go to the next higher court and hope it decides differently). I guess
with a good lawyer one could go up the courts one by one until one gets
the decision one wants. ;)
My advice: in doubt, don't be an exit node and instead become a
middleman node (add ExitPolicy reject *:* to your tor configuration).
That way your IP won't show up on a website or so if someone is browsing
through your node, so theoretically no one can tell the traffic from a
person went through your node and can't hold you responsible.
Accelerate cancer research with your PC: http://www.chem.ox.ac.uk/curecancer.html
The sender of this mail supports mail encryption (GnuPG/GPG, OpenPGP compatible) and digital signature.
More information about the tor-talk