Email Story Pitches January 8, 1998
Dont Ask, Dont Tell, Dont AOL
Pitch 1: Business
Did America Online with over 50% of the email market -- illegally share confidential information with the US military, getting one of its subscribers fired? Thats the question millions of AOL subscribers are asking after AOL divulged to the US Navy, in contravention of US law and AOLs own policies, that Navy enlisted man Timothy R. McVeigh (no relation to the Oklahoma City McVeigh) was the owner of an AOL member profile that military authorities believed belonged to a gay servicemember. Using AOLs admission as a key piece of evidence, the military is discharging 17-year veteran McVeigh next week. Now other AOL subscribers single women, small children, and anyone else who might not want a stranger tracking them down are asking, "are we next?"
Pitch 2: General
Has the US military, in its zeal to expel gay
servicemembers, engaged in illegal cyber-espionage? Thats the question
millions of America Online subscribers are asking after AOL reportedly divulged
confidential subscriber information to the US Navy, costing enlisted man Timothy R.
McVeigh (no relation to the Oklahoma City McVeigh) his 17-year job. The Navy
believed McVeigh to be the owner of an AOL "member profile" that looked
"gay" but had no concrete proof that is was his. So they called
AOL, and were told that the profile in question belonged to Timothy R. McVeigh of
Hawaii. The military is discharging McVeigh next week for "sodomy"
the only proof being his AOL profile. Not only is AOLs disclosure of
McVeighs information a clear violation of AOLs own policies, but Internet
civil liberties lawyers are calling it a clear cut violation of federal law. With
AOL controlling over 50% of the email market, the fallout from this case could
significantly affect the entire online world.
Timothy R. McVeigh - email < email@example.com >.
Kirk Childress - one of McVeigh's attorneys with the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network in Wash DC <202/328-3244>.
Derek Cole - McVeigh's military lawyer in Hawaii <808/474-6014 x303>.
John Aravosis - Internet policy analyst/advocate in Wash DC <202/328-5707>, < www.wiredstrategies.com >, < firstname.lastname@example.org >, assisting on the case's online privacy angle.
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