Meet the Internet Posting Removal Act, an Illinois Bill That’ll Make Your Head Spin

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Meet the Internet Posting Removal Act, an Illinois Bill That’ll Make Your Head Spin
[ Technology]

State lawmakers all across the country busy at work crafting ridiculous, head-spinning laws can take the day off. There is no way they can top this.

A new bill proposed in the Illinois State Senate looks to completely wipe out any form of anonymity on the internet by requiring that the operators of basically any website on the entire internet take down any comment that isn’t attached to an IP, address, and real name-verified poster.

It’s called the Internet Posting Removal Act and was introduced on February 13th by Illinois General Assembly veteran Ira I. Silverstein [D].

What do you think about anonymity of the internet? What circumstances (if any) should an internet commenter be forced to divulge their real identity? Let us know in the comments.

Here’s the summary of the bill:

Creates the Internet Posting Removal Act. Provides that a web site administrator shall, upon request, remove any posted comments posted by an anonymous poster unless the anonymous poster agrees to attach his or her name to the post and confirms that his or her IP address, legal name, and home address are accurate. Effective 90 days after becoming law.

Not wanting to leave any bases uncovered, Silverstein includes that an “Anonymous Poster” means “any individual who posts a message on a web site including social networks, blogs, forums, message boards, or any other discussion site where people can hold conversations in the form of posted messages.”

Silverstein also proposes that “all web site administrators shall have a contact number or e-mail address posted for such removal requests clearly visible in any sections where comments are posted.”

Beyond the obvious questions about self-verification of IP addresses (?) and home addresses (wow), the logistics of this thing are mind-boggling at best. Any comment on any site that has commenting? That would not just include sites like CNN.com, Mashable, WebProNews and others. This could be taken to mean any type of social media like Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr or large online communities like reddit and 4chan.

And what about the constitutionality angle?

The Electronic Frontier Foundation notes that “anonymous communications have an important place in our political and social discourse,” and that this is an idea that’s been upheld by the Supreme Court. They cite a particular decision (McIntyre v. Ohio Elections Commission, 1995):

Protections for anonymous speech are vital to democratic discourse. Allowing dissenters to shield their identities frees them to express critical minority views…Anonymity is a shield from the tyranny of the majority…It thus exemplifies the purpose behind the Bill of Rights and of the First Amendment in particular: to protect unpopular individuals from retaliation…at the hand of an intolerant society.

“These long-standing rights to anonymity and the protections it affords are critically important for the Internet. As the Supreme Court has recognized the Internet offers a new and powerful democratic forum in which anyone can become a “pamphleteer” or “a town crier with a voice that resonates farther than it could from any soapbox,” says the EFF.

Of course, this isn’t the first legislative attempt to limit anonymous speech on the internet. Back in 2012, a nearly identical bill was proposed in the New York State Assembly that would’ve required site admins to restrict any comments that didn’t have “IP address, legal name, and home address” attached to the post.

Like many bills that limit free and anonymous speech, this NY bill was hidden behind a hot-button issue. In its case, cyberbullying.

“It’s an effort to deal with the problem. I’m hopeful that this will be helpful in combating that,” Sponsor Thomas O’Mara explained, “or at least get a dialog going with the industry about this concern.”

But is punishing anonymity the right course of action?

When people who have no idea how the internet actually works start drafting laws, this is what happens. This isn’t the first, nor the last bill of this type that will hit state legislatures. More than likely, this bill will never make it out of committee (it’s been referred to assignments). But the simple knowledge that this kind of thing could even exist is enough to make me want a drink.

What do you think? Is a bill like this even constitutional? Are you concerned about legislative attempts to remove anonymity from the internet? Let us know in the comments.

[h/t reddit]

Meet the Internet Posting Removal Act, an Illinois Bill That’ll Make Your Head Spin
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  • Ryan Kempf

    I don’t agree with parts of the law while I think anonymity should be dealt with I don’t think email addresses should be exposed for all to see

  • Anonymous

    It’s about time some brave legislator stepped forward with a plan to tackle the problem of free speech in America.



    • David Brown

      :-) Good point ~ love the IP address.



  • http://www.everyauction.info Ernie

    Anonymity is a ‘thing’ out of the past, today, the contrary behaviour is the ‘Stantard’. Facebook, Twitter, e.t.c, this is today and will be tomorrow…

    Sure, there are ‘Leftovers’, some from the cold war past, the ‘hidden’ Lurkers, the one’s behind Proxie’s, so feeling more secure from possibly beeing ‘watched’ by whoever, for whatever reason.

    There is NOT ONE good reason to keep (Connection-)’Anonymity’, when it comes to commercial web traffic as well as Forum / Blog Traffic or similar. Hosters must be able to identify ‘Intruders’ clearly in order to take action, if this is requested.

    Nothing to hide, nothing to loose, it’s as easy as this. Democracy does not function on ‘Hidden Hunters’, coming out of the Nowhere. If one wanted to speak, he first had to stand up and identify himself.
    This is, how it used to work in Democratic Systems and this is, how the Web will have to work to keep it democratic.

    Freedom and Democracy has it’s price. Like everything else. If the Price is ‘Control’, we should accept it. Like we accept Traffic Rules and Cops. Both are usually not our best Friends, but without them, we had real war, not just, once in a while, a bent fender…

    Anything else can be manipulated. Like the Press, like the Media, and like everything else, big enough to guarantee big (political) Influence and big (taxfree) Income.

    • NunyaBitness

      I don’t have anything to hide when I go to the bathroom or have sex with my wife, but I still close the door. Anonymity is a protection from retaliation. The identity of the poster should not be important, rather it should be the content of the words.

      • http://inoutside.biz Imelda Ortega Suzara

        I do both anonymous and using my real name. Of course the content and its intent probably should matter more in a public posting although it is an individual personal opinion usually. Anonymity is useful when a comment may be critical and the poster does not want to be punished for being negative. Using a real name is useful if it’s a compliment and positive and may receive reward from readers and the subject.

    • http://nutbastard.com nut bastard

      We accept traffic rules as a matter of public safety.

      Your version of democracy is two wolves and a sheep deciding what’s for dinner. It’s mob rule, and it’s precisely the reason why we in America do not have a purely democratic system of government. We are a Constitutional Republic with Democratic elections.

      You’ve got to be insane! The price of freedom is control? What? What the fuck are you talking about?

      “There is NOT ONE good reason to keep (Connection-)’Anonymity’”

      I’ve got one: Fuck you, that’s why. So that I can tell you to fuck yourself into a corner without my grandma flipping out.

      Also, you should be aware that an apostrophe is used in “it’s” only when making a contraction of “it is”. “Its” is used to denote properties of things, as in, “A caterpillar can lick its own ass”.

      “e.t.c.” is not a word or even a thing. It’s “etc.”, an abbreviation of “et cetera” which is Latin for “and other things”.

      “Nothing to hide, nothing to loose” – the word you are looking for is “lose”, as in “to be deprived of or cease to have or retain [something]”

      Actually, in a stunning twist, I would love for this law to apply, but only to you. I noticed that you refrained from posting your entire name here, but since you think this whole anonymity thing is outdated and unnecessary, I’ll post your name and address here for folks to see.

      Ernst Jacob. Jr.
      Othmarsingerstrasse 15
      CH-5103 Moeriken

      • Matt

        He’s not concerned cause he doesnt live in america and has nothing to lose

    • Toto

      “If the Price is ‘Control’, we should accept it.”

      You are a moron you f.ng communist! Go live in Cuba. Bunch of nonsense you wrote.

    • dan

      If someone does not want to sign a blog or website with their identity, they should be free not to. When someone in China “offends” the establishment with dissent, they are often imprisoned. Our country is slowly morphing into a big government controlled entity. It’s happening under the guise of benevolence. With the direction our nation is heading, some day most of us will wish to be anonymous.

  • http://nutbastard.com nut bastard

    Eliminating anonymity on the internet would force everyone to be politically correct during their personal time, lest their current or prospective employer be able to read their every off colored joke, political opinion, or lighthearted trolling attempt.

    What of anonymous support group sites where people discuss highly personal topics in vivid detail, such as the sexual abuse they suffered as a child or how they are coping with a medical condition?

    Google “nutbastard” (with the quotes) and you’ll get around 23,000 hits. Google my real name and you’ll find maybe a half dozen hits that are actually related to me.

    Hell, my podcast wouldn’t even exist if I had to reveal my actual identity. You think I want the details of my experiences with hallucinogens tied to my actual name? The exact way I wipe my ass, what kind of porn I like, tales of drunk driving?

    There are very good reasons why so many authors have historically used pen names, not the least of which was being able to say outrageous things without being hounded and persecuted personally for doing so.

  • Anonymous

    I believe ^Ernie^ here is a communist. I won’t even begin to pontificate on the many ways you are wrong. Give me liberty or give me death.

  • http://www.antisocial-carl.blogspot.com Gennick

    Does anyone know of any good hotels in Madrid, spain? Price not important.

  • rob mccolley

    It’s a federal issue. It’s out of the province of state governments.

    I wonder whether Ira Silverstein knows that? And why is it that so many state legislators are unfamiliar with federal law, the constitution, the supremacy clause, etc.?

    • Matt


  • http://dtmagazine.com Fearless Rick

    There are times when laws should just be ignored, and this seems to be one of those times.

    Uh, is this going to be published? Uh-oh. I’m shaking in my boots that some state assemblyman from Illinois (or NY, where I reside) is going to come over to my house and spank me or fine me or jail me for my comments.

    Patrick Henry said, “Give me liberty or give me death.” I say, “Leave me the F–K alone. There is no ‘or’ anymore.”

    OR, what is it good for! HuH.

  • http://www.zazzle.com/djskagnetti* Jack Skagnetti

    “Go fuck yourselves, Illinois senate.” is the first thing that comes to mind. “Go fuck yourselves and then spontaneously combust.” is the second.

  • Nigel Roberts

    I agree with the Bill. No one should be allowed to hide behind a cloak of anonymity and say the most outrageous things. ISP’s should be forced to uncloak these individuals.

    • BlokeToys

      So you would be happy to see a gay person in Iran executed because they no longer have a right to anonymity, or a girl in Pakistan executed because she dared to comment intelligently on a post about education, or you would agree to being arrested when a politician doesn’t like something YOU have said?

      You’re short-sighted, naive, and you would give away your basic rights and freedoms without any thought. Perhaps you should move to a country like Iran, Syria or North Korea, that seems to be the kind of place you would be happy with.

  • dh915

    WAKE UP!! They take the Guns away, then they can take anything away!! Maybe an American Spring!!

  • knysna

    I say fu@ck them all, the long the short and the tall.

    “a web site administrator shall, upon request, remove any posted comments posted by an anonymous poster unless the anonymous poster agrees to attach his or her name to the post and confirms that his or her IP address, legal name, and home address are accurate. Effective 90 days after becoming law”

    Fu@ck the “Bill of Rights and of the First Amendment”

    I live in Africa and i refuse to give out my true credentials due to the incompetence of the so called competent net.

    Fu@ck you all with your US crap.

    Best regards from the man in the bush in Africa.

    And try trace me! Am i a man, perhaps a women, a dark’y, a whit’y. Or simply a street tramp.

    Haha, maybe you should contact my service provider!

    I am hundred present sure my phones registered on my id!! (needles to say all my other accounts)

    Ow ok. you got my ID number!

    Kiss my @ss

  • Alex

    interesting. I thought any decent website that allows comments has a report comment button anyway, i.e. defamatory , racists etc. comments can be reported and will be removed….?!?!

    If full identity and address would be required for interent posts, what about newpapers, TV etc.? What about politicians making public announcements? Should they then not too always have to reveal their private address with any article, program, speech??? Not sure if Mrs Silverstein would want the whole world to know where she lives?
    What abotu ex-directors telephone numbers? I think all politicians should then have ALL their telephone numbers, including their private mobiles posted on an open access website. They are public figures, paid by the taxpayer, so the taxpayer should be able to reach them 24/7….

    • Matt


      Great comment. Send it to Silverstein.

      I left another huge comment with my letter to him and how to contact him here:


  • Anon

    Democrats yell about our civil liberties and the evil GOP but they are the one taking away or trying to take away our civil liberties. We will have drones in American skies,all digital information collected in Utah, the so Bush illegal bush wire taps are for some reason OK under Obama and according to the ACLU have quadrupled since Obama took office. This will be a start to not being to post anything on the net unless all your information is available for all to see.

    • BlokeToys

      Quit with the partisan BS. BOTH parties are the same, the only thing different is the face of the person chosen to represent the criminal cartel actually running your country.

      Bush started two wars, increased the debt, removed your rights under the Patriot act, angered the whole world and failed in the investigation into 9/11… and Obama uses drones, didn’t do anything to the Patriot act, and continues on the same path in all the things that are already mapped out for him.

      If Ellen Degeneres was elected tomorrow, you would see gay rights move forward, but nothing else would change. Foreign policy and the increasing hold over the American people by the military industrial complex an their corporate friends is the one single thing on the minds of those who actually make decisions, and they are not your elected officials.

      When will American freakin’ learn? Your President is just the friendly face of something you never see. Previous presidents have made statements about this secret group running your country, and you STILL blame one party or another for what’s going on?

      This is why most of the world looks at America with bemusement. Most of you have no clue about what’s going on in your own government. While ours is not much better, at least we GET IT and try to do something about it.

  • Curtis

    So, IF this bill gets written into (Illinois State) law, I will simply write a script to detect if visitors to my websites are using an IP address that traceroutes back to Illinois. Then I will redirect that visitor to a page that explains why they can’t access my website, with a link to the lawmakers email addresses that passed the bill, so they can forward their complaints.

    • Craig

      Bravo Curtis!

  • BlokeToys


    Ira I. Silverstein is an idiot of the highest order.

    Not only does this go against the basic rights and freedoms of a people, and will be attacked not only in American courts but by the UN too, but this arrogant prick seems to think his poxy little state can police the world? lol

    Let me guess, he’ll then decide that policing the world is far too difficult, so he’ll propose legislation to block all but approved sites agreeing to his draconian dictatorial rules?

    The guy is an ignorant fool, an imbecile of the highest order. He’s clearly just another old man who doesn’t understand the internet, and is probably on a mental personal crusade because he saw something critical of him.

    The guy is douche, and should be removed from his position for daring to suggest that the basic rights and liberties of a free people should be removed – despots should always be removed from their office the MOMENT they threaten basic Human rights.

    Interestingly, we can see the same idiocy happening all over the world, with idiot old people who don’t understand how the internet works. They can draft all the idiot bills they like, they’re only embarrassing themselves and making the public turn against them.

  • knysna


    There is indeed a misconception with regards to Goggle and US laws (that are less worthy of a piss pot full of crap)

    There assumptions of taking over the net are indeed futile. Lets call it premature ejaculation.

    It will never happen, they are without a doubt slithering back into the same piss pot full of shit they crawled out off. There conquest will indeed backfire on them, due to there universal tight fisted anal crap (legend Messiah controllers)

    HaHa. Flagellations! them trying to clean up the dirty world and web they have already created. They are hurdling to there own millennium, the same one that’s going to dissolve them into a ball of faeces, while the rest of the world flushes them with all the acquired crap and sentimentality they deserve!

    Naturally my personal opinion (all the way from Africa)

  • http://Webstuff2.1 Billy Barrell

    Ha. Lets create an ” Internet posting corp ” creation company. People could set themselves up as mini companies that just post to the Internet so that they would be able to list the company address, a p o box, as the home address. We could also create a po box creation company, that would forward snail mail to the p o box holders home address. So now you coulbe ” anonymous poster inc,, company address, etc. …. What a wild ride this will be

  • Jim

    Another stupid Democrat Nazi-style idea that the Democrats keep insisting they never have.

    Next, good ole Ira will starting insisting we all wear yellow stars.

    And don’t fall back on the politically-correct idea that Silverstein may well be Jewish, so I shouldn’t be referencing Nazis.

    A dangerous idea is dangerous regardless of whom it is from.

  • http://www.everyauction.info Ernie

    >>I believe ‘Ernie’ here is a communist.<<

    Well, not exactly, I am rather a 'right wing' democrat, at least 'matched' on the political System in my Country.

    SWISS are beeing raised as beeing 'equal', we want no King, no Queen, no (ruling) President, no ruling Party, no (fixed) political Opposition. We don't like 'very influental' or 'rich' Persons, we prefere a little 'downsized Impressions'. Our System works (mostly) on Compromises, made on a daily scale, not on politial Positions. We have no natural Ressources, still, today, despite of a HUGE Immigration, we have about 3.x % Unemployment, and an average Working Man makes about 5-6'000.- US-Dollars a month, a Woman a little less, a typical small House costs about 800'000.- US-Dollars. They sell, at present, like hell.

    Next week, we vote on state paid full day kindergardens from the age about 3. We all are insured by State Law, in case we need Hospitals, Doctors or similar, abortions is, as example, im most cases, paid for as well as stomatch Rings and other Needs of the Burger Generation…

    We also will vote on a Law, LIMITING top Salary and other Forms of Payments to Puplic Company TOP Managers. Not, because we are a Communist Country, but because, we want to fight against that corrupt and brainsick US-STYLE Manager Pack, thinking of nothing but how to get rich quick.

    Beeing an Postwar Model 1946, I was able to 'follow' the entire 'Process', turning the 'ancient' World into an 'Economy Machine', nobody ever dreamed of before. Today, it had become possibly for Individuals to make 'Billions', enough to guarantee their own 'Followers' heavenly 'HighLive' for the coming 5'000 Years.

    The USA has played, in many Forms, a Mayor Role in this Process. I always have been an 'American' in my Hearth and in my Dreams. Beeing a Kid, I learned my first english Words by listening at night to the Voice of America, on Longwave Radio, from RIAS Berlin, in plain English. I was lucky to even live this Dream, for a long long time.

    Looking at the States today, Cleveland, Detroit, Nothern Michigan, just to mention a few, I feel like beeing in a very, very bad Dream.

    Coming to the States the first Time in 1969, 1.00 US-Dollar then cost me 4.30 Swiss Francs. In the Year 2013, 1.00 US-Dollar costs me 0.92 Swiss Francs.

    Coming to the States in 1969, I found a Country, full of 'Action', today, I find a Country, full of empty Houses, broken families, no hope and an already destroyed Future.

    But I also find Peoples, still calling others Communists, just because those others talk about 'any' Form of 'Regulation', thereby not realizing, that this is the only way to keep Humans from becoming egomanic Animals.

    Americans have paid a gigantic price already. Some of them still seem not to realize, how badly their 'American Pride' has been, over decades, misused by their Leaders, their Media, and others, like Swiss Bankers. Despite of the Fact, that those fellows just took the money from your Fellow-Americans, not your Houses…

    Standing up, fighting for the meaning of the content, written in the BIG Book, does not automacically makes one the be a Communist.

    In contrary. But this may take a 'free' mind to understand.


  • Craig

    This is absolutely ridiculous, posting on the internet is like going into a local mall and posting up a piece of paper on the local bulletin board. It’s up to you if you want to identify yourself. Every person has the right to their individual privacy!

  • William

    Generally laws are written by either an R or D, because these are the most common parties in state houses. So when a stupid law is written by somebody, that does not immediately mean that person’s whole party is behind the law. Many dumb laws never even get out of committee. Only partisan hacks would take an issue like this and demonize a whole party. If it had broad support from most Democrats that would be different.

    I’m a D, and a law like this seems ridiculous and unconstitutional. The first amendment bars congress from making any laws that abridge freedom of speech. To abridge means to reduce in scope. Clearly adding additional requirements that may cause many to worry and keep quiet is a reduction in the scope of free speech rights. If this law ever did get out of committee and find broad support, which is doubtful, it is even less likely to survive any court challenge.

  • Craig

    There already is a country where people don’t have the right to post anonymously: North Korea. I suggest those who want laws like North Korea, should move there and see how they enjoy their “safety” when they make a comment that is negative to the establishment. Any Democratic politician (I don’t care your party affiliation) suggesting laws similar to North Korea should be impeached from office post haste.

    • Aileen

      Couldn’t agree more…BTW, didn’t they have this type of censorship in Germany, WWII era?

  • http://webdesignjustforyou.com Eileen Forte

    Seems like it’s one step closer to Big Brother society.

    • David

      This is totaly ridiculus. This could expose innocent people to all sorts of crime and victimization. I.E. Alert pedophiles to when children are vulnerable,when a single woman is alone,let thieves know the best time to help themselves to your valuables,etc. That’s why for example classic car forums have usernames,and encourage users to NOT divulge personal information because of thieves trolling for information. Just like thieves and stalkers troll facebook.
      What has happened to that little thing called “Common Sense”?

  • Jon

    Quote –

    “A new bill proposed in the Illinois State Senate looks to completely wipe out any form of anonymity on the internet by requiring that the operators of basically any website on the entire internet take down any comment that isn’t attached to an IP, address, and real name-verified poster.”

    Well I dont live in Illinois – I dont live in the US. None of my websites are hosted in the US – the above quote suggests that the author is of the opinion that someone in Illinois can tell the rest of us what to do…

    “requiring that the operators of basically any website on the entire internet”

    Well my websites are on the “entire” internet and if this Illinois guy knocks on my door I will politely tell him to get stuffed – equally well I will refrain from telling him what to do in Illionois.

    I can never work out if Web pro news is supposed to be US only – the style of article writing is certainly very US-centric so many articles seem to be written about US laws and US rules and in such a style that implies it will somehow affect those of us who dont live in the US.



  • http://richinwriters.com Steven

    These dictators want to control our lives it’s really that simple. However most of these tax bills etc. are coming from old people unaware of the new world and the thinking behind this new world. For the record Ira I. Silverstein is a Democrat and he’s 50+ years of age.

    There are some people born before the 1970’s that understand the internet however there is a lot more people beyond this age that just don’t have a clue. Nothing surprises me with these government people who want to make it seem like they’re earning their pay checks!

  • http://www.globetek.us Timothy R. S-Robenhorst

    They will learn their lesson some day. This would put their families in danger at all times as well as every cop, judge, lawyer, all Government officials and any related workers. Not to mention our children whom can remain private on social networks and business owners. We need to take back our country things like this if passed could multiply the problems 10 fold. What about all other countries that do not conform? Trading sanctions and complete economic downfall? Way to promote small business. Like him or not I think Scott Walker from Wisconsin should make a visit and have some talks with these people. I Develop Free Websites for Small Businesses. Trust me if you want to find something on the internet you can! They need to be educated completely on what they are making decisions about and allow the people to speak and make the decision. As I stated I have a business building free websites for small businesses if there are 30 responses to my post about this I will post it in my business blog as well as on all my social networks. This needs to go viral. I would like to here thoughts form police and any government about the exploitation of their families as well as parents whom will have their children put at risk by disclosing where they live.

  • David Brown

    This idea is ridiculous from the start. Even forgetting the obvious privacy and control concerns, the sponsor of this bill has no understanding of the technical issues involved.

  • chayn123

    Do any of the posters/commentators here Recognize the irony of having to provide your generally traceable e-mail address in order to comment?

    It seems to me that this subject is somewhat dealt with already in that most relevant forums require you to have some sort of real e-mail address before you can join the comment.

    You can’t even send anonymous letters to the editor in newspapers. They won’t be published.

    I think both anonymous and authenticated media have a place. I think anonymous posters spreading poison and lies should be recognized as potentially false. The same as someone attaching their identity to media taking a true personal stand on their position.

    I don’t think being anonymous or registered should be an across-the-board requirement.

    And, I wish I’d taken my Swiss citizenship when I had the chance.

  • http://rocointernationalmedical.com Bobby Duane

    This is the biggest and most ridiculous thing I have heard in a long time

  • http://www.pilotfishseo.com Angela Charles

    I would expect that if passed, this law would face an immediate suit on the grounds of constitutionality. And, how would the state of Illinois enforce this? Would this be for websites operated out of the state of IL, or for persons posting from IL? It seems that enforcement would be difficult, if not impossible for websites not operated in the state, unless you want to become China and start blocking IPs.

    • Matt

      When we were kids, it was always assumes that China would become more like us, but it is apparent the opposite is true.

  • http://honkmorons.com A Maven

    They come for the guns (second amendment) and you sit idly by and say that does not affect you. You shrug when they take away your right to face your accuser with stoplight cameras. You cheer when the government seizes bank accounts and takes away drivers licenses without due process for deadbeat dad’s.

    Can you be surprised they are coming after your right to free speech and privacy next?

    The U.S. Constitution guarantees inalienable rights from our creator that the government cannot take away . . . . . unless we let them.

    Any time any of our constitutional rights are threatened by the government and we do nothing, all of our constitutional rights are being threatened.

    Sent from the murder capitol of the world in the socialist republic of America, Illinois.

    • Michael Huynh

      Why would this interfere with any of your rights? I mean if you talk Sh’t out of your A’s you can be man/women enough to show who you are. This law wouldn’t stop any body from posting just the cowards.

      • Matt

        Should we have to risk our lives to make a truthful comment esp. when it goes against authority (e.g. government)? Seems like so much more can be done when speech can be protected from the week and powerless, like Arab Spring.

        It’s not like the govt. isnt already paranoid that every middle-eastern is a potential terrorist, and its not like they’re intercepting all our voice communications for the same reasons, and its not like the USA was founded upon free speech conflicts, and its not like China hates free speech, etc….

        Look at history, old and recent.

  • Michael Huynh

    Amen to that, It is time people cannot throw stone and hide their hands any more. Now all the business can have a real reviews and response to there customers. After all, a review is a mean for the owner to have a chance to talk to there customers to best workout a solution to remove a bad review. These bad reviews from unknown registers are like a drive-by shooting.

  • Fred

    Only in ILL-ANNOY could this shit happen. FFS, Chicago had as many murders in 2012 as the entire COUNTRY of Canada, yet they have the most strict gun control laws anywhere in the USA.

    Moron citizens these days just can’t wait for Big Brother to protect them from every little evil that could possibly happen. I am so sick and tired of living on a planet with such sheep. But I won’t have to wait long until you sheep are gone. The government you all love as your protector will soon slaughter you all. Fucking MORONS.

  • John Haynes

    I think it should be passed as soon as they pass a bill that forces politicians and all of Washington fully disclose all of their trips and expenditures that we, the people, are paying for! Fair is fair – Washington should live by example instead of being lying, manipulative control freaks!

  • http://kingworldnews.com Jonny Butana

    This is just another attempt by our government to control that which they fear. The internet has provided much enlightenment of the government’s true agenda and tactics and the politicians are fearful the people will see them for who they are and what they really stand for. and it’s not just the U.S. government either as I’m sure you all realize.

    I believe that in the not to distant future, the U.S. will have the distinction of being mentioned in the same way as Hitler and the Nazis were. While was born in America, I now live in the U.S. There is a major difference. Those that complain yet do nothing and just shrug it off thinking there IS nothing they can do ( and my wife is one of these ), will one day soon – maybe as they sit in the FEMA camps ) realize that their ( unhappy ) acceptance of things as they are, are the exact things that lead to the death of our once-great and free nation. our constitutional are not just being threatened, they are slowly and methodically being taken away. The entire politically correct corrupt political system is in need of a complete abolishment and overhaul and this is a huge reason as to why we are constantly being threatened with more and more laws controlling our every action. It sickens me to see what has become of this nation and Obama is not the only one to blame here. It began a long time ago.

    “Any time any of our constitutional rights are threatened by the government and we do nothing, all of our constitutional rights are being threatened.”

  • http://www.theakurians.com Colonel Robert F. Cunningham

    Will this jackass aforethought ‘law’ apply to the BASTARDS THAT BE and their Kommrades top-to-bottom?

    Doubt it.

    Nothing else in their Grand Plan of TOTAL Global Enslavement does or ever did!

    Colonel Robert F. Cunningham,

    • Matt

      Email the dude. Commenting here alone is bound to change nothing.

  • http://www.melchinger.com John Melchinger

    Include political speech in this, and as in Canada, a “truthful statement” accountability requirement that any statement made in print or publically must be a truthful statement and no politician in this country would ever let it become law (or newspaper, magazine or any other conveyance for that matter). It would end the Reblicans for sure and hurt most Democrats, and the self-righteous religious right lunatics will be apopletic. Without anonymous lies how could we have opinions? It boggles the mindless.

    • Matt


      Your comment was partially moronic. I let you guess which part.

      • Jeffrey B Patterson

        John sounds like a moron who voted for Silverschmuck..

  • Matt


    Here is what I sent to him:
    Dear Senator Ira I. Silverstein (D),

    This email is being sent anonymously, just like the voicemail I left you. I have been a victim of bullying most of my life, but your proposal is worse than them all, and is bullying my free rights, my intelligence, and actually puts peoples lives at severe risk.

    It is apparent that your minimal knowledge of the internet, free speech, and comments/spam that us webmasters have to deal with, prevents you from making a rational proposal (E.g. I may get 1,000 comments on a single day, have of which are real, and half of which are spam. I have no time to check each and every comment regardless). I also want to leave comments that oppose the viewpoints of others without being ostracized, ridiculed, or bullied for that thought, just like this email.

    There is a much better resolution: Require the webmaster to remove the comment if it infringes upon the rights of others, when that other person makes the request to have it removed as long as it is inaccurate (libel/defamation). Also, intsead of burdening America with one more absurd law, instead, encourage people to simply do the right thing and try to collect the IP address of the person submitting the comment, delete negative comments about individuals, and most importantly, spend time teaching people how to deal with bullying. Also note that most webmasters ban such users from their forums and stuff.

    Lets look at the efficiency aspect: I read 10’s of 1,000’s of comments every year, and have yet to read one that is bullying someone else. So, you are saying we pass a law that benefits one or two people for the 1,000,000,000’s of man hours and countless $$$’s it would cost to implement, manage, and enforce such a program. Now that is bad, besides the fact, such comments would simply pop up on servers hosted overseas and such, fixing nothing.

    On a final note, all methods you describe of capturing peoples information is even more ridiculous:

    1. IP addresses are anonyumized regularly, through the use of most anti-virus software in protection of the consumer, or through the ISP (e.g. AOL), or through networks like TOR. Even this email is anonymized by Hotmail, thankfully.

    2. Real names and addresses are easily faked.

    3. The security of peoples lives would be at stake for speaking up for truth and freedom. Could you imagine if China passed such a law, and how the government would throw a lot more people in jail? Well, do not doubt for a minute that your leaders are less than perfect and how this could end up really bad for some people. The internet has been one of the greatest catalysts for positive change in the history of mankind. I would hate to label you as the one that ended that.

    Spend more time educating, and less time legislating. In the meantime, avoid running for public office with such ridiculous proposals.

    Please reply to this email ASAP, at least acknowledging that you read it in its entirety, otherwise, I will start sending numerous anonymous faxes and letters until you do. And one more thing, I am also going to post this all over the internet….anonmously, mainly because I think governement officials get way too many bills passed without enough attention. I think it would be better to pass a bill that requires you to announe your bills on online communities, forums, blogs, televeision ads, newspapers, etc…

    Damn your idiotic bills. Is this really any different than posting online?

    My name is not really Matt Smith
    (000) 000-0000

  • Cap’n Cyberzone

    Silverstein is a typical Liberal (Democrat): over emotional reactionist, no common sense, no grasp of reality and disdain of the Constitution.
    Illinois would have to isolate itself from the rest of the world in order to accomplish [Herr] Comrade Silverstein’s edict … perhaps a good idea considering that state’s corrupt history.

  • Rolf Witzsche

    This gag law is insanity on to the extreme – It’s like banning the Bible in which not a single quote can be verified – you might as well ban free speech.

  • http://www.HomeBizBook.com Bob Sharpe

    Let’s see… he’s a Democrat from Obama’s home State. Is it possible they want to add to their list of people who oppose the Obama socialist agenda for America?

  • Jeffrey B Patterson

    Let’s see..Illinois has over $80 Billion in unfunded pension obligations, state workers preparing to go on strike, people and businesses leaving the state in droves, and this dipstick is spending time and resources on this? Typical idiot politician/lawyer from the Land of Lincoln.

  • http://www.sfpincchicago.com Shadow Fire Promotions, Inc.

    First off, the odds of this actually becoming a real law are slim to none, and not just because of the constitutionality of it. Plenty of politicians feel justified in making their bloated salary. Let’s talk about the irony of a “servant of the public” making substantially more money than the median salary in this country. Gone are the days when one aspired to service to the public for the good of the public. Now, politicians make a career doing basically what most employment newsletters counsel you NOT to do – job jump.

    It’s like getting a new toy at Christmas, or being a cat and seeing a shiny object while playing with your stuffed mousey. “OOOH!!! SHINY!! I must have!! I’ll come back to you later, mousey…when I get bored with this shiny object!!” When your pet does it, that’s ok, because it’s your pet. Politicians are not far off from the mentality of your pet. See a new job that pays more than what you do? Run for a different office. Get elected or appointed to that job, and instant pay raise. Lather, rinse, repeat.

    Now, allegedly, spam is illegal. Yet, there’s still spam all over the internet, and a good reason for it is that our wonderful politicians told spammers, “Look, we don’t care in the slightest if you spam. Just include “unsubscribe instructions” in your spam. It doesn’t have to be legit, just include it. So if your unsubscribe instructions leads to a dead address, that’s ok. We don’t require those instructions to be valid, we just want you to have them.” So, now our level of spam has vastly increased, because our elected officials have legalised spam.

    What does that have to do with anything? Well, it would seem that our government has found a way to profit from spam, since anyone with a reasonable intellect knows that if you post your email address anywhere, you’ll be spammed. So, presenting a bill to guarantee one posts their real email address seems like a way to increase spam. Why would one want to do that? If they make money from it. It’s why people with a “hotmail” or any other free email address gets tons of spam. It’s how these companies make their money. Between that and scanning your email to better target the ads you didn’t ask for. One wonders what kind of ad our MSN mail gets, since it’s an address used solely for messenger and is not checked at all. Do these people scan their own spam and say, “Hmm…lots of Viagra in this mail…let’s put out more ads for pharmaceuticals!”. Thus, there seems to be a correlation.

    Does this bill require public figures to post their home address? Does your favourite rock star have to post his home address and phone number before telling you when his next record will drop? It would seem to open one for stalking, then. Does this exclude our wonderful politicians who make $600K annually to tell you, “Don’t drink soda and don’t eat that candy bar!” We’d love to know where Mr. Silverstein lives. Come on, Mr. Silverstein, you want a law that mandates everyone post their address and phone, so ‘fess up.

    As for us:
    Shadow Fire Promotions, Inc.
    “Your Chicago Source For Wrestling
    P.O. Box 2746
    Chicago, IL 60690

    You can research the rest. If Mr. Silverstein wants to arrest our boss, he’ll have a rough time at it, since our boss is a Marine with a bad attitude.

    Mr. Huynh, you talk about anonymous bad reviews of businesses as if you were the target of one. Raise your virtual hands if you actually stress about what someone who is ANONYMOUS says on the INTERNET. It’s like the joke about someone being wrong on the internet. It’s so ridiculous that it’s sad.

    Mr. Maven, you talk about the Constitution, and while we agree with the sentiment expressed, it is difficult to actually do in reality. We, the People, have elected our government to take away these rights from us. However, short of either legally impeaching them or recalling them or (illegally) staging a revolt, what can Joe Average Citizen do when his elected President decides his personal religious beliefs trump your personal opinions or your health or the health or lifestyle of those around you? The President wants to wage war. All the time. If not in Iraq, then Afghanistan. If not there, then Iran. Or China. What do you do to say, “HEY! We do NOT need to constantly be at war in order for you to have a legacy!” Do you write a strongly worded letter? What about the freedom you surrender to travel by air? Everyone knows that is a sham, since people still manage to get by security, and all it does is make people wait in longer lines and get more frustrated with flying, but it doesn’t stop a person who really wants to hurt someone. So you kick a politician out of office. Does it change anything? Does it change the rights that politicians strip from Joe Average Citizen that do not affect them, because they can reserve private planes that Joe pays for with his taxes, while politicians hire tax experts to reduce their debt load, or pass laws that exclude them from their own laws?

    That’s not meant as sarcasm. That’s a shoot. If you know how to stop a politician, please speak up. Electing a different political “lifer” who has jumped from one job to the next and has no concept of reality because they have spent their entire life trying to get elected to another office that pays more won’t change anything.

    Again, besides the constitutionality of such a law, were it to actually pass, which, hopefully, the majority of people know that there is no way this can pass into law, not just because of the above, but also, how does one propose to enforce it? Are we going to have people monitoring the internet to make sure you post your name and address? My name is Jessica Biel. My phone is 773-769-0782. Is that accurate? Of course not. So do we now have someone…oh, no…NO!! The Feds have come to lock me up!! I lied on the internet, and now they are going to imprison me!!

    It’s not the notion of such a bill becoming law that bothers anyone, because most people of intelligence recognise that it won’t. What bothers people is that We, the People are PAYING Mr. Silverstein and his colleagues SIX FIGURES A YEAR to come up with half-baked ideas such as this. It’s not far removed from owning a company and then complaining that your employee (which politicians are…they are your employee…you elected them to represent you…) are surfing the net while working. Your employees (the politicians) are not working on your behalf. They are reading personal email on company time. THAT is what should be bothering people.

    With regard to the masses crying out about “gun control”, hopefully you gentlemen are aware of the fact that any kind of “gun control” will have ZERO affect on any kind of gun violence. Gang members do not submit to background checks to get guns. Nor do any other law breakers. That’s why they are called, “criminals”. They do not obey the law. President Obama can go and make new gun laws from this moment until the day he steps out of office and it won’t change a thing. With luck, politicians recognise this, but it’s doubtful. They just want to maintain the illusion. Much like David Copperfield, politicians deal with illusions. They may not defy gravity or any other things that someone like Mr. Copperfield does, but they still deal in illusions. When someone is the victim of gang violence, people cry out that “something” needs to be done. So, your elected officials decide, “Well, this is “something”.” It doesn’t have to be effective, or even realistic, like spam laws. It just has to present the illusion that you are doing “something”.

    Does making Joe Average Citizen jump through ten more hoops to go shoot at some deer in the forest preserve have any correlation at all to a member of the Latin Kings stealing a gun and going to gun down little Susie because he “thought” she looked like a member of a rival gang? Of course not. But it’s the illusion that it does something.

    Michelle Obama goes and sits at a funeral, and everyone thinks that it is so wonderful that she is “doing something”. We sign more legislature against “military-style assault weapons” without having a singular definition of what, exactly constitutes such. But, by signing into law bans on such things, it’s the illusion of “doing something”. “Thank God our great President, President Obama is doing something about guns! I’m so happy he’s making new laws to protect me! I feel so much more secure now because that extra week he is making people wait will surely discourage that Latin King member from stealing his next gun! Thank God for the President! He is going to show those gang members he means business!”

    Yes, statistics can be manipulated to show anything anybody wants, and certainly statistics will BE manipulated to show that all these laws designed to make sure someone else can run your life for you is the best thing.

    Does the system work? Unsure. Is it broken? For certain. Does it work “sometimes”? If this ludicrous bill is shot down, like it rightfully should be, then that answer would be YES.

    Again, as stated before, people should be less up in arms about the prospect of such a moronic thing becoming a “real, live boy”, and more time being concerned about elected officials having the kind of time on their hands that they concern themselves with anonymity on the internet. Is there nothing else going on in the world today that we focus on a fat kid who doesn’t want to exercise and anonymity on the internet? That would be a concern first.

  • Ryan

    More anti-freedom, bureaucracy from the Democrats. Just what this country needs. More BS laws to defy what it means to be free.

  • http://www.netscype.com Netscype Gino

    No comment!

  • David

    Is there some way these people can be mentally certified or better, given a cleaning job somewhere.

  • Spam Exterminator

    lmfao wow well as long as there is a law of whats good for the goose is good for the gander then lets see how much they want that bill to pass SMFH. Make it so them government official have to include their real names and Home addresses when they post. Lets see how many government officials are willing to give up their Home address. Lets see if them Better then thou Politicians would hand over their Real Home Addresses to the people they are pissing off. I bet there attitudes change rather Quickly.

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