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posted by Dopefish on Monday February 17 2014, @02:00PM   Printer-friendly
from the government-should-mind-their-own-business dept.
mattie_p writes "MIT students won a hackathon last November with a non-functioning demo of Tidbit. The concept is to replace web advertising revenue with a tiny amount of Bitcoin mining on the user's browser. Out of the blue, the students were hit by a subpoena from the New Jersey Attorney General demanding that the founders 'turn over sensitive information including source codes, hosting websites, and all of the Bitcoin wallet addresses associated with Tidbit.'

At first MIT council referred the students to legal assistance from the EFF, who quickly came to their defense. Now there is a petition going around requesting the MIT administration support the students directly. Parallels are being drawn to Aaron Swartz, possibly because one of the authors of the recent petition is Prof. Hal Ableson, although details of the two cases have very little in common.

MIT President Reif has now come out strongly in support of the students--and in favor of academic freedom from interference by government."
 
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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 17 2014, @06:47PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday February 17 2014, @06:47PM (#937)

    the cost for the visitor, in electricity bill, is much higher than the revenue the site gets though. It would be interesting to see a calculation of how much is spent in resources and money per generated revenue for this, but also for normal advertising damaged websites: to cover the cost of sending 10kb, how many kb is sent?

    I bet it quite depressing to read though, just like when 1/3 of it is used up to extract the oil... only this time it is 95%?