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ATM giant and voting machine hopeful Diebold has dropped its attempts to stifle discussion of flaws in its computer systems.

An archive of internal Diebold emails, some listing embarrassing errors in Florida during the 2000 Presidential Election count, has been widely hosted on the Internet since it first leaked.

Diebold argued that the emails were protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), the draconian 1998 legislation written by copyright lobbyists. Since copyright was a concept sanctioned in US law to protected the 'useful arts', this was a novel interpretation of the founding fathers' original intents.

Diebold threatened not only ISPs who hosted the material, but anyone who linked to the archive. But after a case was brought by the EFF's publicity officer, a Judge in San Jose in a preliminary hearing has forced Diebold to promise not to threaten any more Internet Providers. The court will hear motions in January. A full case is scheduled for 2004. ®

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