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United States Censorship Government

DoD Descends On DEFCAD 496

Posted by timothy
from the where-there's-a-whip-there's-a-way dept.
First time accepted submitter He Who Has No Name writes "While the ATF appears to have no open objection to 3D printed firearms at this time, the Department of Defense apparently does. A short while ago, '#DEFCAD has gone dark at the request of the Department of Defense Trade Controls. Take it up with the Secretary of State' appeared on the group's site, and download links for files hosted there began to give users popups warning of the DoD takeover." Well, that didn't take long. Note: As of this writing, the site is returning an error, rather than the message above, but founder Cody Wilson has posted a similar message to twitter. At least the Commander in Chief is in town to deliver the message personally. Update: 05/09 21:17 GMT by T : Tweet aside, that should be Department of State, rather than Department of Defense, as many readers have pointed out. (Thanks!)
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DoD Descends On DEFCAD

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  • wtf (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Aryden (1872756) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @04:36PM (#43679071)
    The real question is, when did we give the DoD control over domestic actions? The constitution strictly prohibits the military from acting as a policing force on US soil. So, who the hell gave them the right to take down a domestic website?
  • by He Who Has No Name (768306) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @04:39PM (#43679119)

    You know, you can always use printed parts to cast molds and pour aluminum parts from them (or even steel if you're brave).

    You could also bootstrap yourself a David Gingery lathe and turn a barrel from scrap steel if you wanted.

    Just saying.

  • by golodh (893453) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @05:01PM (#43679403)
    It never ceases to amaze me how people are able to seize on the Amendments to justify their own short-sighted, stupid, destructive, extremist and anarchist hankerings.

    Of course there are limits to how far you can push your first-amendment rights; there have to be. See e.g. [] and scroll down to Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes who formulated the clear and present danger test for free speech cases.

    How about all those would-be terrorists who can now print their very own pistols that will fail to show up on airport scanners if they (unaccountably) fail to put a big steel x-ray reflector inside the gun? How's that for 'clear and present danger? Feel good about sticking it to 'the man' and spreading 100,000 copies of those gun CAD files, do you? Irresponsible is the least one can say about it.

    This is the reason neither Joe Sixpack or 'the man in the street' was put in charge or national security or determining whether this or that speech is protected by the first Amendment or not.

    The only real problem is that it's too late now. The horse has already bolted, and every man jack on the planet can shortly print his own plastic gun ... and use that to highjack an airliner or something ... which is what a lot of them seem to want.

  • by ducomputergeek (595742) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @05:20PM (#43679613)

    I agree with this and it's annoying to someone who actively shoots on a regular basis and no longer can. I used to buy a brick of .22LR every couple months and at least 100 rounds of 9mm & .40 every month. I even gave up my range membership this year. No sense in spending $300 when there's no ammo to shoot. And I have a feeling that the ammo that is going to be produced this year is already spoken for by the panic buyers as people like me decide that maybe the next time we see ammo available at decent prices we should stock up in case of more panic.

  • Re:Uh, no. (Score:0, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 09, 2013 @05:50PM (#43679889)

    I don't know it could be a standards issue. If they are stopping one group they must stop all. I don't see Lockhead Martin running open source weapons programs. They probably could not if they wanted to.

    If it was a detailed instruction manual on how to build a cruise missile I'm sure it would be considered more then speech.

    I think the key words here also are. "Without permission". They do not have permission to share "arms designs".

    State Department is enforcing itself in order to stop a precedent from forming. Right now it seems pointless. But in the future it may be a big deal. Better put this fire out before it grows out of control.

    *Disclaimer* I don't advocate limiting speech, nor do I wholly advocate control on exports of any kind, yet I am undecided if we should promote certain technologies publicly without penalties and deterrents for their misuse

  • Re:Uh, no. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Prien715 (251944) <agnosticpope&gmail,com> on Thursday May 09, 2013 @06:02PM (#43680003) Homepage Journal

    s/nuclear bomb/arms/

    What you are missing here is that these files this guy is sharing are essentially just descriptions of shapes and therefore typically would be considered speech. The files then let you make nuclear weapons (though really poor quality ones). He is sharing information though, not nuclear weapons, which is why this has been transmuted from a second amendment issue to a first amendment one.

    Arms=small arms and nuclear arms. Free speech famously has limits (falsely yelling "fire" in a crowded theater) so where do we draw the line here?

  • Re:Uh, no. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Thursday May 09, 2013 @06:28PM (#43680257)

    "... so where do we draw the line here?"

    This does not come anywhere near the line.

    You can buy books published by the U.S. Government on how to make booby traps, home-made bombs and explosives, and so on. They are military books. But the government has no copyrights in most circumstances, so they are available for the public to freely copy and distribute. And our form of government can't work any other way.

    More to the point: the Government also can't publish books on a subject themselves, then deny the right of others to do the same.

    State Department means Hillary Clinton, who is an anti-gunner. (No doubt this administration looked high and low for some kind of excuse to restrict this.) If it's restricted by the State Department, that means it's restricted for export to other countries. They MIGHT, just barely, be able to make some kind of case of that nature.

    They would not, however, be able to restrict sale or distribution of plans within the U.S.

  • Re:Uh, no. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ClintJCL (264898) <clintjcl+slashdot@gma i l .com> on Thursday May 09, 2013 @08:34PM (#43681135) Homepage Journal
    Instructions for creating nuclear bomb are a google away.

Mathematicians stand on each other's shoulders. -- Gauss