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Can legal changes prevent another Aaron Swartz tragedy?

  • Sometimes the Law goes too far

    The punishment did not fit the crime. Too much emphasis is placed upon cyber crime and I don't believe what he did warranted his sentence and led to his subsequent suicide. We can change the law, and should change the law, if it's going to drive members of our society to such actions.

  • Legal changes cannot change psychological issues.

    Aaron Swartz was a brilliant man. His revolutionary ideas about the computer and the way information is shared have forever changed the way we perceive the world. But he killed himself because he had a mental illness first and foremost, not because the government persecuted him. Yeah, he may have felt there was no way out, but a sane person doesn't do that.

  • No, Legal changes won't prevent another Aaron Swartz tragedy

    Aaron Swartz was targeted because he was a hacker and an activist. His approach to releasing information to everyone was at times illegal and at other times immoral, according to authorities. He removed files from MIT which was later released for free by the university and made available to anyone who wanted to review the information.

    Aaron had suffered from depression and had on more than one occasion written about his struggle with the disease. It appears that the upcoming federal case played a role in his suicide as it created a great deal of stress and anxiety. However, this does not mean that a change in the law would prevent future suicides. There cannot be an assumed relationship.

    The laws do need to be reviewed. It does appear that prosecutors were overreaching when they charged him. It doesn't appear that he should have received a 30 year sentence for the act.

  • No, they would not.

    Legal changes would not prevent another Aaron Swartz tragedy because it was known that Swartz suffered from depression. Whether it was his legal dilemma or something else, he was triggered to commit suicide and would have regardless. It was a health issue that he should have taken care of, it is nothing that the law can prevent.


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