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RE: http://techpolicy.lse.ac.uk/csrc/sig/lawsoc.html

On Thu, 2 Jul 1998, Paul Leyland wrote:

>> From: Carl Ellison [mailto:cme@acm.org]
>> At 03:42 AM 7/1/98 -0700, Paul Leyland wrote:
>> >For a British lawyers' professional body's view on what 
>> should, should not
>> >and might be in digital signature legislation, I'd recommend 
>> taking a look
>> >at http://techpolicy.lse.ac.uk/csrc/sig/lawsoc.html
>> Paul,
>> 	this is a wonderful paper.  How was it received?
>That's an ambiguous question.  I received it in a mail sent by Nicholas Bohm
>to UKcrypto.  

As Nicholas commented today at mcg-talk:

 This contains a submission by The Law Society, the professional body
 representing solicitors in England & Wales, to the Commission of the
 European Union on the subject of the draft Directive on electronic
 signatures.  It was the work of a small working party, of which I was
 one of the members. 

 Unlike the ABA in the US, the English legal profession has not been
 involved in electronic signature issues until quite recently, and has
 not been exposed to the detailed and sometimes controversial debates
 on the subject which have become familiar to many members of the
 list.  The paper therefore inevitably tackles the issues at a fairly
 simple level, and the treatment of revocation through a central
 database, for example, may seem unsophisticated. 

>Somehow, I don't think that's what you meant 8-)
>The other interpretation is: what did the community think of the paper?  I
>can't really answer that one.  I like it, as it tallies with my views.  Much
>the same paper was presented at the Scrambling for Safety conference in
>London a month ago.  Judging by the questions and comments from the
>audience, I'd say many people present also liked it.  On the other hand, the
>Department of Trade and Industry are proposing legislation which seems to be
>largely irrelevant and unnecessary if the lawyers are right.  On the third
>hand, the legal systems in many European countries differ significantly to
>British law, and the DTI's approach may be needed for consistent Europe-wide
>applicability.  IANAL.

Anthologic answer and, as a fourth hand, showcases how language (eg,
a security protocol) may block expression, wittingly or not. 

Notwithsading differences in legal systems, the "law is all" 
evangelists on both sides of the Atlantic (or, Pacific if you wish)
are IMO loosing a precious opportunity to use their time to lint
legislation, instead of increasing it. The world has no global
government and no global Law but has a global Science and
Engineering. So, IMO it stands to reason that one should try to
decrease law options and increase engineering options. But, Schneier
has more or less already said this...


Ed Gerck
Dr.rer.nat. E. Gerck                     egerck@novaware.cps.softex.br
    --- Meta-Certificate Group member, http://www.mcg.org.br ---