Terrouge E-zine Archives
Monthly Editorial: Redwall Freedom
Redwall Freedom, although it didn't last long, aroused massive interest in the ROC, as it was the first big gossip point we've had for a long time (unless you count the cross-dressing accusations in the Redwall Asylum...). Somewhat reminiscent of the notorious BRDO (Boycott Redwall.Org) of early '99, Redwall Freedom provided back doors into the password protected areas of the Unofficial Redwall Club, better known as RW-Club.Org (now the Goldenleaf Inn).
My first thought, upon seeing the page, was, "Oh, poor Retto." I certainly didn't envy him the stress (and probably dejection) he'd have when he found out about it. Redwall Freedom provided links to the various message boards and other sub-sites within Cavern Hole, the area of RW-Club.Org which only members are supposed to be able to access.
The first thing to consider is, why? The Terrouge staff does have a 'press pass' into the restricted areas of the Redwall Club, but I've visited approximately twice since it changed hands. When asked about the current flaws in Rw-club.org, the webmaster of Redwall Freedom, who requested that we keep his identity confidential, said this: "Well the lottery process of course... I mean, what's wrong with letting the people that want in, in? Hardly anyone ever posts in the secure messageboards, and letting more than a couple people at a time in would dramatically help. I'm okay with maybe making them pass a test or place high in some contest or something, but barring hundreds of people from entering, just to make the dozen or so people that regularly post feel special, benefits no one."
I asked Retto if he believed the content of Redwall Freedom was illegal, and this was his response: "According to the 'I don't want to be a lawyer, really!' Brawnoak, who knows this kind of thing, it's not. However, they know it's password protected, they went looking for a flaw, which is hacking in my mind."
The next question, of course, was whether any moral boundaries had been crossed. As may be expected, the opinions of Retto and the RF spokesman were exactly opposite.
Retto: "Of course it does. People get sued for hacking into other websites. The traditional goodwill and cooperation of the ROC is also violated, if someone want's to get into the club, they try to join, just like with any other club... The original reason the club was password protected was so that everyone couldn't get in and write objectionable messages on the boards.
Redwall Freedom: "In a word, no. I appreciate the fact that it is Retto's site and thus is his to do with as he pleases, but what we've done doesn't infringe on his rights and is entirely within our rights as owners of the TSSORFF website. We did not 'hack' into his site, we just provide links to it."
Approximately four days after Redwall Freedom opened, Retto changed his links, causing Redwall Freedom to stop working. He also contacted Geocities (Redwall Freedom's host), and they removed Redwall Freedom from their server.
So why am I bothering to write about something that only lasted four days? Retto's comment about the traditional goodwill of the ROC got me thinking. In the past, most of us have cooperated, and worked out our differences peacefully, the only notable exception being the aforementioned BRDO. Much as I agree with Redwall Freedom's premise of Rw-club.org's flaws, I cannot help but think that perhaps they overstepped their bounds.