1998-12-14 - Re: German government press release on Wassenaar

Header Data

From: Mok-Kong Shen <mok-kong.shen@stud.uni-muenchen.de>
To: Alexander Kjeldaas <astor@guardian.no>
Message Hash: d76a04a81a716aed86c23c31e1f59e32bfb9e8961efbd0eb0fa2f858a700b5c9
Message ID: <3674F0E6.3BC542D5@stud.uni-muenchen.de>
Reply To: <v04020a1bb2941c8e1795@[]>
UTC Datetime: 1998-12-14 11:07:41 UTC
Raw Date: Mon, 14 Dec 1998 03:07:41 -0800 (PST)

Raw message

From: Mok-Kong Shen <mok-kong.shen@stud.uni-muenchen.de>
Date: Mon, 14 Dec 1998 03:07:41 -0800 (PST)
To: Alexander Kjeldaas <astor@guardian.no>
Subject: Re: German government press release on Wassenaar
In-Reply-To: <v04020a1bb2941c8e1795@[]>
Message-ID: <3674F0E6.3BC542D5@stud.uni-muenchen.de>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain
Content-Length: 1514
Lines: 42

Alexander Kjeldaas wrote:
> On Mon, Dec 14, 1998 at 08:46:49AM +0100, Mok-Kong Shen wrote:
> >
> > a. "Public domain" is defined in the document you refer to, by the
> > indentations under Item 1.
> >
> > b1. 128-bit software is never exempt.
> >
> > b2.  64-bit software is exempt if you meet ALL of the other criteria.
> >
> > b3. The limit of exemption is 56 bits, if you do not meet all of the
> > other criteria.
> >
> > See my other response where this is explained from Catgory 5 - Part 2.
> > Unfortunately, one key statement is missing from the General Software
> > Note and it contains the magic word "ALL."
> >
> I haven't heard anything about there not being any exemption on
> 128-bit crypto.  To my knowledge there is a general exemption on all
> Open Source software, regardless of the key length.  However, I will
> check into this.

I think that without looking at any official texts this is very clear 
from the motivation of the Wassenaar effort: They don't want strong 
crypto ever to be used by common people. So they can't allow
128-bit crypto for free export in any case. Quite misleading, at
least in my opinion, is their use of the word 'public domain' 
software, which most people understand to be software which anyone 
can download free of charge.

BTW, does anyone have an idea of how long would it take before
the clauses of Wassenaar become effective in the countries concerned?
It can't be intstantly effective, can it? (Laws have to be officially

M. K. Shen