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posted by martyb on Thursday November 14 2019, @10:08AM   Printer-friendly
from the now-it's-Defense...Disturbed? dept.

Trump deal to share 3D-printed gun blueprints online ruled 'unlawful'

A federal judge has struck down a decision by the Trump administration to allow blueprints for 3D-printed guns to be shared online.

In a ruling published Tuesday, Judge Robert Lasnik said the deal made in July last year was "arbitrary and capricious" and thus a violation of the federal Administrative Procedure Act and the Constitution.

The original deal was part of a settlement between the Justice Department and Texas-based nonprofit Defense Distributed, which garnered worldwide attention in 2013 with its claims to have created the world's first "100 percent 3D-printed gun." The dissemination of plans for the gun was blocked by the Obama administration, but last year Defense Distributed successfully sued the government and had the ban reversed, arguing that it was a free speech violation.

[...] Bloomberg notes that the decision may still have limitations, given that Defense Distributed worked around a previous, temporary ban on downloading plans by simply mailing blueprints directly to customers. Said [spokesperson Chad] Flores: "The speech these states want so badly to censor is already on the internet and always will be."

Also at Bloomberg, NYT, and CBS.

Previously: Landmark Legal Shift for 3D-Printed Guns
[Updated] Defense Distributed Releasing Gun Plans, President Trump "Looking Into" It
Federal Judge Imposes Preliminary Injunction Against Defense Distributed's DEFCAD

Original Submission

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  • (Score: 5, Interesting) by hemocyanin on Thursday November 14 2019, @08:53PM

    by hemocyanin (186) Subscriber Badge on Thursday November 14 2019, @08:53PM (#920496) Journal

    The license for the DD files noted on defcad is GPL v3.0: [] That includes the original Liberator. I'm not easily finding what license Cody Wilson initially used, but given his anarchic views and his multiple public statements about "releasing them to the public domain(*)" -- the license is sure to be permissive in nature, although whether the files were donated to the copyright-public-domain space or not isn't clear to me.

    (*) It's hard to tell if by "public domain" Wilson meant the copyright type, or the definition of public domain from ITAR: []

    Let’s say you want to export schematics for a gun that are already publicly available, information you could find in a library or on a magazine stand. That data would exist within what the ITAR calls the “public domain.” You’re safe to do with it as you please—no winding trip through State Department bureaucracy required.

    The public domain exemption is meant to shield corporations, nonprofits, or anyone else from attracting the State Department’s fury over simply distributing something that’s already freely available.

    Nowadays, however, most information that’s “freely available” is found on the Internet. But the ITAR’s definition of public domain was last updated in 1984, before the World Wide Web even existed. Naturally, the word “Internet” doesn’t even appear in the regulations.

    Starting Score:    1  point
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    Total Score:   5