Porno popup case makes national news

On January 19, AlterNet brought you the story of Julie Amero, a substitute teacher from Norwich, Connecticut who faces up to 40 years in jail because a malware-infested PC in her classroom spewed pornographic popups at her 7th grade language arts class.

Defense experts who analyzed the hard drive found that the computer had been automatically redirected to the pornographic websites because a user had inadvertently downloaded a piece of malicious software from an innocent hairdressing site. Because of a variety of procedural missteps the jury never heard the evidence that exculpated Amero.

The computer itself was completely unprotected from obscene material because IT staffers let the content filter lapse. Yet it was Amero who was criminally charged with potentially endangering the morals of minors, even though she did her best to shield the kids from the monitor.

I'm happy to say that both Alison Leigh Cowan of the New York Times and John Christoffersen of the Associated Press wrote fair and informative articles about the Amero case.

One hopes that this egregious miscarriage of justice will be reversed on appeal. Julie Amero should not be the scapegoat for lax cybersecurity and anti-porn paranoia.

[Photo by Iggy]

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card


Thanks for your support!

Did you enjoy AlterNet this year? Join us! We're offering AlterNet ad-free for 15% off - just $2 per week. From now until March 15th.