Doesn’t the FBI Have Better Things to Worry About?

Posted: August 5, 2010 in Uncategorized

One would think the FBI has enough on its plate to keep it busy. Apparently not. The FBI has decided to go after Wikipedia because Wikipedia has the gall to display a picture of the FBI shield on its encyclopedia entry. Um, excuse me. Are you fucking serious? Oh, pardon me. Of course they’re serious. The FBI wouldn’t know a joke if it bit them in the ass. The FBI sent Wikipedia a letter stating they have 14 days to remove the seal from the site. They state that 18 United States Code, Section 701 says:

“Whoever manufactures, sells, or possesses any…insignia, of the design
prescribed by the [Department head]…or any colorable imitation thereof, or
photographs, prints, or in any other manner makes or executes any engraving,
photograph, print, or impression in the likeness of any such…insignia, or any
colorable imitation thereof, except as authorized under regulation made pursuant
to law, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than six months, or
both.”

Wikipedia is not bowing down to the bullying of the FBI. They sent the FBI a letter (rather humorous and well worth the read) stating that they would not remove the seal from their site and disputing the FBI’s assertion that displaying it is illegal.  They said that “the Bureau’s reading of 18 U.S.C. 701 is both idiosyncratic (made especially so by your strategic redaction of important language) and, more importantly, incorrect.”   In regards to 18 U.S.C 701 they had this to say:

“Certain words that you redacted, which are central to the interpretation, are bolded and underlined for your convenience:

Whoever manufactures, sells, or possesses any badge, identification card, or other insignia, of the design prescribed by the head of any department or agency of the United States for use by any officer or employee thereof, or any colorable imitation thereof, or photographs, prints, or in any other manner makes or executes any engraving, photograph, print, or impression in the likeness of any such badge, identification card, or other insignia, or any colorable imitation thereof, except as authorized under regulations made pursuant to law, shall be fined under this titled or imprisoned not more than six months, or both.”

Wikipedia also went on to point out that the FBI shield appears on other websites, notably Encyclopedia Britannica. Their letter to the FBI was some seriously good reading, and I highly recommend that you take a couple minutes to read it.  Believe me, it’ll be well worth your time.

Anyway, it now appears that we wait.  What will the next chapter in this saga bring?  Who will prevail in the epic showdown between the FBI and Wikipedia?  Stay tuned, kids.

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Comments
  1. Kaye says:

    Glad you finally got that posted sweetie. Nothing like getting frustrated in order to get your frustrations out 🙂 Keep on blogging! I love reading what you write. Don’t let stupid WordPress stop your creative juices!!

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