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Proposition 35

The California ballot includes a proposition that would require all registrants to disclose internet activities and identities within 24 hours of its passage.  This requirement is hidden within Proposition 35 which states its focus is upon stopping human trafficking.  The proposition would also require anyone convicted as a sex trafficker to register as a sex offender.

Supporters of this proposition include the California Statewide Law Enforcement Association and the Police Officers Research Association.  It is not surprising then that fines collected from sex traffickers will be used for law enforcement!  The combined investment of these two organizations — reported as about $700,000 — could pay great dividends since individual fines could reach $1.5 million.

California RSOL joins organizations such as the California Association for Criminal Justice. the California Council of Churches, and the Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club in opposing Proposition 35.  Please vote NO on Proposition 35 to protect the privacy of more than 100,000 citizens!

If this proposition should pass, California RSOL will participate in legal action to stop enforcement of this proposition.

NOTE: Also see commentary and comments here

This Post Has 70 Comments

  1. Bluewall says:

    and somehow email addresses of people would prevent human trafficking.. a person can have thousands of email accounts easily by sitting on a computer for 30 minutes… in comparison of actually mailing addresses, it may take a few weeks… This sooo makes perfect sense..

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  2. Joe says:

    Reading the ballot text:

    => current RSOs will have to submit their e-mail addresses, screen names and providers immediately (whatever that means) after passage of this bill, and then within 24 hours (!) WITH EVERY CHANGE (addition, deletion or modification).

    290.014.(b) If any person who is required to register pursuant to the Act adds or changes his or her account with an Internet service provider or adds or changes an Internet identifier, the person shall send written notice of the addition or change to the law enforcement agency or agencies with which he or she is currently registered within 24 hours. … Each person to whom this subdivision applies at the time this subdivision becomes effective shall immediately provide the information required by this subdivision.

    “Internet identifier” means an electronic mail address, user name, screen name, or similar identifier used for the purpose of Internet forum discussions, Internet chat room discussions, instant messaging

    Do I smell a logistical nightmare?

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    • leagleeagle says:

      The use of the word “immediately” should be grounds to invalidate this law right off the bat.

      While I am not sure how a proposition becomes a law, the nano-second after it goes becomes actual law and goes into effect, 100,000 people across California have just committed a NEW CRIME, (the same offense across the board, but misdemeanor or felony based on something in the past) by not reporting their e-mail etc. IMMEDIATELY. Which is physically and practically impossible.

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      • Nicholas Maietta says:

        The Del Norte County Sheriff Department in Crescent City, California has a very limited window of opportunity for registrations. The time window is 8:30am to 10:30pm on Thursdays only.

        That means, everyone in Del Norte County just committed a new crime under the way this legislation was written. It should have NEVER reached the ballot. That in itself should be a crime. It’s sad to see so many law enforcement agencies HATE how the law is because it detracts from real crime solving and forces man hours to be spend on technical that really do not help protect the children. If anything, this makes the problem worse, doesn’t it?

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  3. MM says:

    I too have shared Prop 35 within my world and told them of the hidden requirement for RSO’s and asked them to vote NO, I already have. My question is … Internet Identifier, I’m confused. I know that your AOL, YAHOO or GMAIL account information would have to be provided, but what about your Directv account? your car insurance account? Your Macy’s log on? We all have “internet identifiers”, “username” and they are not necessarily the same as your email … again, another law that is NOT CLEAR.

    How far does Prop 35 reach? To only your “email” (internet identifier) you use to communicate with friends and family or further, does it include your work email? I tired to decipher some of the Prop but got lost in the mumbo-jumbo of internet identifiers and whether it’s at a library or work or home …. will they ask for passwords next?

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  4. http404 says:

    MM, see the pdf link and(proposed)section 290.014 where definitions are provided. If your DirecTV or Macys account offers a comments section or chat capability once you’re logged in, then I am reading into it that you would in fact be required to disclose your user ID for those accounts. What doesn’t seem clear is whether “chat” capability would include sites that offer a chat feature to interact with their technical support team. This may be splitting hairs but I’d hate to see someone get arrested on a technicality and this legislation is rife with opportunities to entrap someone based on technical aspects.

    As Joe said, this would be a logistical nightmare.

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  5. Wonderer says:

    What about posting on this website? You can post under a new name all day long, if you so please. Is every time you write something under a user name (just because you do not register per se that does not mean you are not posting under that name) cause to provide that name? What if you stop using it?

    What if you sell something on craigslist? They assign a unique email to the each posting. Does that need to be provided? What if you sell the item / delete the posting. Terminating an identifier is a change per the definition.

    What is the process for informing the police of a new name / identity? Must you appear in person? Registered letter? E-mail? Is there a form? Or do you just scribble something on a piece of paper? What determines the 24 hour period? USPS stamp? Personal appearance?

    What if your annual appt comes and they do not have a current list of your digital identifiers? How, oh how, can you sign the form if it is not correct? I would not if I had back-up (and believe you me I would).

    This must be the least thought about piece of legislation on the planet! Lets see, if it passes, if they did not bite off more than they can chew!

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  6. Wonderer says:

    One should not forget, that failure to comply with PC 290 is an automatic felony or misdemeanor, depending on the underlying conviction. No nag letter, no fine, no lien against some asset. A CRIME – very likely a felony – poor book-keeping skills suffices. For something that is completely unrealistic and entirely ambiguous.

    If someone were intent on creating repeat felons, this legislation should do it…

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  7. Janice Bellucci says:

    Thank you everyone for your insightful comments. The situations you have described are why we will be fhallenging the enforcement of the proposition if it passes. Please stay tuned! And, yes, donations to the “cause” would help us to what needs to be done.

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  8. Get your Rights says:

    just be ready…..basicly we cant do nothing about this and most probably it will pass.
    so, stay alert and contact your registered police department at he same day as this measure passes. otherwise we will fall into this new trap with a new mosdimonor or felony,

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  9. Get your Rights says:

    if it passed, what we have to do? should we contact our city police department immidiatly?

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  10. CharlieO says:

    These are such great comments – I especially love the one about CraigsList which I use frequently to offload this or find a deal on that.

    The insanity continues…
    In this day and age anyone younger than my parents has more Internet accounts than they realize. As an IT consultant somoene in my role probably has more than the average end user and to compile a comprehensive list for every forum, blog, support site, email, ISP, telco, bank, shopping, or merchant account that I have established since I entered this career in 1997 without an accidental omission would be impossible. I maintain client accounts for software licensing, domain registrars, etc. Must I disclose those as well? That would be a breach of any NDAs I have in place with them.
    Will this list be publicized? I remember a story within the last couple of years where this happened in another state. The list of email addresses was made available to FaceBook who immediately de-activated profiles associated with email addresses on the list.
    My gut tells me that the gross ambiguity of this law will cause it to be struck down or suspended the day after it passes. Of course, this will only happen if we have someone to file an injunction. Does anyone know if Janice Belluci or the ACLU is standing by? Where can I contribute to help fight this battle?

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    • Janice Bellucci says:

      Yes, CharlieO, we are standing by to challenge Prop. 35 if it is passed. California RSOL will be actively involved in the challenge and therefore donations are both needed and appreciated. It’s easy to do….use the Donate button on this website or send a check to the mailbox. Thanks for asking!

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  11. MM says:

    We’ve got our letter ready, addressed to the Chief of Police with “internet identifiers” listed (fortunately, there are only 7 of them) … if (when) this law passes – when will it go into effect?? (Is that an ignorant question? I just don’t know.)

    I’m also sure that once the letter is sent to the Police Department they will most likely react something like … “Great, now what do we do with this letter and information?”

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  12. DZ says:

    I would hope this portion of the law would be struck down, but who knows? Within court could take a long time. No wonder the law says ‘immediately’ since they must realize there is good reason for this portion to be struck down, but at that point, law enforcement already has all of the email and forum accounts, and who knows what they plan to do with those.

    Are they really going to arrest 150,000 people in 24 hours for not knowing the fine print of a brand new law, and not having been asked to provide the information? Or for not providing information in full, because of unclear wording or accidental omission?

    I have read in some places that it requires passwords as well, but I did not see anything specifying that in the wording of the proposition. I did however notice it says that registrants must fill out the form, and it seemed to indicate that the form might change: perhaps on the form it will ask for passwords? I know the Patriot Act already allows Homeland Security to scan email and telephone calls, but that is very different than local and state law enforcement having your passwords to accounts. Wouldn’t this violate the right to privacy? Under normal circumstances law enforcement would need a warrant to tap phones, computers and read personal mail, so how would this be legal? This also violates the privacy of all my friends, family and business clients.

    I also do online banking, I don’t want to have someone I don’t know and don’t trust having access to this through my email.

    With a voter approval rating projected at 77% this looks like it will be a reality in a few days.

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  13. Pam says:

    Alas, I think this is going to pass. I am a member of SEIU, and a strong supporter of my union; however, it grieves me and I am ashamed to say that SEIU is supporting Prop 35 and recommending that its members vote yes. Brace yourselves–it’s going to be a bumpy ride.

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  14. DZ says:

    So what is the actual requirement for rso’s?
    The wording of the proposition is not very clear.

    It states ‘internet identifiers’ must be given to law enforcement ‘immediately’ after the prop is enacted, which would mean the day after the election. But what information must be given exactly? For sure, the name of the company that provides the internet access (but not the actual IP address it would seem) and email addresses. But other online identifiers? For what? Forums, social media & chatroom only? Or for blogs & sites like this one as well? Would I give them simply ‘DZ’ because I have posted a comment here or would I give them DZ along with this website, or none because it isn’t a forum or chatroom? The law is not clear at all. If I use the same forum name for many forums do I give them my handle only, or list every forum I tend to post on, and then, if I use the same forum name on a new forum- is that no change because it’s the same name, or is it a change because it’s a new forum and they will require written notice of this within 24 hours? The law says nothing about listing the website addresses of forums you post on, but is it implied? It isn’t clear.

    Also, what prevents someone from using the same forum name you use on one forum on a completely different forum? How will the police know this is not you? Nothing prevents a person from purposefully or accidentally creating the same name someone uses on one forum but on an unrelated forum. Will people be arrested because a stranger made a name that was the same as one of theirs?

    What will they do with these email addresses and forum handles? If they list it on the meagan’s law website that opens up registrants to internet harassment and loss of business.

    Most rso won’t even know about the provision of this new law, and so are they open to be arrested for violation of registry? I am burdened with this legal stigma, what info exactly am I required to give the police on Wed. morning? despite this obviously being a bad law and surely unconstitutional, I will give them what I must but nothing more than I have to, because I’m sure not giving them an excuse to throw me in prison. I was foolish once, never again. The requirements are vague and undefined. It seems to be a trap or ‘gotcha’ law.

    What info must be given? There isn’t much time left to figure this out.

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  15. Janice Bellucci says:

    Although I am a lawyer, I am not giving any one person legal advice. If I were a registrant, I would prepare a list of online identifiers and have it ready IF it is necessary to provide such a list to law enforcement. However, if I were a registrant, I would not provide the list to anyone until 23 hours, 59 minutes after the proposition is passed. Why? There will be a legal challenge to block its enforcement and if one has already given such a list to law enforcement, one cannot take it back. More to be posted at a later date.

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  16. DZ says:

    Thank you Janice!

    I am glad to hear that this is being challenged and that it’s already being prepared.
    I understand this isn’t personal legal advice, just asking an informed person their personal opinion and for general governmental definitions that should be (but seemingly are not) made general public knowledge.

    When does the clock start ticking?

    Looking online all I could find is that a proposition is enacted ‘the day after it is voted on and passed’. Does that mean 12:01 a.m. or 24 hours after the poll closes, or is there a moment of official recognition of a proposition becoming a law which is announced? And then, after whatever time this is, do we have 24hrs from that point?

    24 hours is not a lot of time to overturn a law, which I’m sure is the reason they wrote it that way, so will the first step be trying to get a temporary hold put on it? Or will there be a shot at striking it down immediately? and if so, is this the best location to find out such information? I’m new to this site, but so far very impressed with the information and motivation. You have my gratitude.

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  17. Pam says:

    “Online identifiers” is a broad term. What, exactly, are they? Where do we start? Also, my husband hasn’t been near a computer in over 5 years. We haven’t had one in our home due to his parole restrictions. I doubt that he even remembers any email addresses he might have had back then, as he rarely used a computer before his arrest anyway. How far back do we have to go?

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  18. Mad Mom says:

    I’m a bit confused as to who all would be required to disclose internet activity….ALL registrants currently on the registry, or just those convicted of human trafficking, which is what Prop. 35 is primarily about?

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  19. http404 says:

    Attn Pam and Mad Mom:

    Definitions are provided within the proposition’s language that answer your questions. Internet service provider and internet identifier are spelled out. Also, this amends the information required to be provided to law enforcement when registering for those required to register, which means EVERYONE subject to PC 290 registration requirements would be expected to comply.

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  20. J says:

    Is there any more word on the constitutional challenge/injunction being prepared by the CA RSOL? It seems very likely that prop 35 will pass.

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  21. steve says:

    Also, if they get our provider info wouldn’t that give them access to our families internet info?

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  22. Bluewall says:

    So..umm what now?
    http://vote.sos.ca.gov/returns/ballot-measures/

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  23. steven says:

    what do we do now? do we send in our internet info or wait for lawsuit filed please let us know

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  24. Bluewall says:

    Its like Proposition 83 (Jessica;s Law) all over again, maybe it’ll cause a mess and no one has any clue how to handle it.. still years later Jessica’s Law is sort of baffling everyone.. can it be retrograded or not.. who knows…

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  25. David Kennerly says:

    So, am I to understand that final poll results passing the proposition (as it most certainly will) begins the clock tolling? Can that possibly be? If so, I propose anyone who is affected by this scurrilous law to immediately begin to register as many free email addresses and social media identities as possible. The more, the better. Bury them with paper! Also, it does not appear that passwords are required to be handed over. Is that your understanding, Janice?

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  26. J says:

    So does this mean that RSOs have now until 8pm tomorrw to turn in internet info? Which actually means now till 5pm as It seems that the only way to submit the info is either postmarked mail or showing up in person.

    Any word by CA RSOL on whether RSOs should wait for the proposed injunction before submitting the information?

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  27. DZ says:

    the proposition says nothing about passwords (I guess they didn’t want to make it too easy for them to have it overturned) and interestingly it says nothing about providing which forums, social media & such that the ‘internet identifier’ is used for. So emails and this would be listed as simply ‘DZ” as I understand it. Opens up huge problems since there could be hundreds of different people with the same ‘identifiers’ all over the internet on widely different forums & sites.

    Polls closing mean nothing. The wording of the prop. says ‘when enacted’ – which best of my research says is the day after the election. But there must be some kind of official moment when a voted on proposition is ‘enacting’ into law, since sometimes there are recounts, delays, etc. When this is for certain I don’t know. I had thought that sometimes a law would pass but it’s moment of implementation would not be for several months, or until the first of the year, etc. Nothing in the proposition says when the law will take effect, only what rso’s must do once it is enacted… which again, isn’t clear when that is.

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    • MP says:

      I am no lawyer, but I don’t believe the law is “enacted” until certified by the Secretary of State, which isn’t until December 14th.

      Below is from:
      http://vote.sos.ca.gov/frequently-asked-questions/

      >>
      County elections officials must report their final results to the Secretary of State by December 7. The Secretary of State then will certify the results of the election by December 14. (Elections Code sections 15210, 15372, 15375, 15400, 15401, 15501, 15503)
      <<

      It wouldn't seem that a law could be "enacted" until the Secretary of State certifies the election and ensures all votes have been cast.

      But again, I'm no lawyer, so please don't take my word for it.

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  28. James says:

    I contacted the 290 unit in San Jose last week and they were completely unaware of the provisions of the proposition. After he spoke with his sergeant he called me back and said that they have no idea what we are supposed to do as of now, adding that it is very strange that a law would go into effect immediately instead of on January or July 1st like most new laws. He thanked me for being diligent and told me to sit tight until they know what they are supposed to do.

    I plan to call him again in the morning to see if they have any new information. Hopefully there will be an injunction in the meantime so this horribly punitive law can be challenged. If you are off parole or probation as I am, you have already paid your debt to society. Keep up the fight.

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  29. Get your Rights says:

    I tried to contact local 290 unit. left message twice regarding this issue asking for guideline, but didnt get back.
    I think to be on the safe side send your internet Identites by certified mail tomorrow, and try to go to local police department and meet with 290 unit if possibl. if not, drop off a copy for them with Attn 290 unit on it.
    thats all I think we can do for now to avoid to get in trouble. Hopfully a law suit with RSOL will block this section on the prop 35.

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  30. Tired of hiding says:

    I am really sick of this. Amerika is supposed to be a place where everyone deserves a second chance…right? Well, that turns out to be nothing more than a clever advertising slogan! It doesn’t apply to “sex offenders” (whatever that really means). Kill someone…do your time…pay your debt to society and you get that second chance but in the holier than thou USA mention sex…yes, SEX and everyone goes nuts!

    I say that the time to fight the madness is here and I for one am not afraid to fight any longer and I certainly I am tired of hiding!

    Join me!

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  31. Kat says:

    I’m not a RSO, but my boyfriend and father both are, and I think some of the laws are nuts, (like when I saw an article in the paper where a 19yr old showed a couple toddlers porn on his computer and got 7 or 9 yrs, but a murderer on the same page only got 3!) but this just takes the cake.

    People required to register can knock this thing on its butt really fast…. I’ve been trying to figure out where to post a call to action…. Every RSO needs to join multiple forums daily and send each of those accounts within the 24 hour limit…. overload them until they see how crazy this is.

    It’s not totally unreasonable either… I have ADHD and go on ‘research trails’. When I do I normally end up registering on several different sites just to be able to read one forum post on each. I’ve seen my boyfriend do the same thing, and I know we aren’t the only ones.

    My question is, what about accounts you’ve made and forgotten about? I’ve had over 30 email addresses (doing online surveys you don’t want to use your main email because of spam), and thanks to my almost daily ‘research trails’ I’ve probably signed up on 2000 forums in the last few years, and I don’t remember most of them cause it was only the one visit to the site. I guess law enforcement is lucky I’m not RSO, they’d hate me lol!

    And what’s to stop RSO’s from making a new account and not reporting it? It’s so EASY to hide your online activity that they could get away with it, which makes this useless…

    What if you share a computer with someone… do their accounts have to be reported too so that it’s known they don’t belong to the RSO?

    And they can use this to net people for other crimes… do you really think they’re going to ignore a demonoid or piratebay account? What about an account to access healthy, normal porn? Will that throw up red flags? The worst thing is… even if you wanted to get rid of a lot of accounts before this happened, most sites don’t have any way to cancel your account! And again, how do they know what accounts on your IP belong to you or a family member? Next they’ll use this information to claim that RSO’s are the majority of illegal downloaders or something!

    And how likely is it that someone who commited the crime of incest (or peed by the side of the road, or the 18yr old who had sex with his 17yr old girlfriend) would even use the internet to commit a crime? I could almost understand requiring that information from people they catch committing crimes online, but this?

    Sorry for the rambling. ADHD makes it hard to think neatly and unfortunately it shows…

    But, yeah, if they actually enforce this, everyone needs to just overload them with new accounts daily, after a couple weeks of that, law enforcement themselves will beg for it to be repealed.

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  32. VSPSV(S?) says:

    We all need to show at the meeting on the 10th.

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  33. J says:

    No word yet on a challenge to the prop?

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  34. MM says:

    Wondering … should we contact the police department where registered and straight forward ask them when they expect to receive the required information?

    I’m sure the PD isn’t exactly aware either of what to do with the information when it is provided. Also, does the RSO have to present the information themselves? It’s not like they are registering, right?

    I want to bring it myself if necessary AND upon giving them the letter REQUIRE them to sign some sort of ‘homemade’ receipt that they in fact DID RECEIVE IT. What they choose to do or not to do with the information will then be up to them. I don’t care if they lose the letter after it’s been delivered but I want a receipt showing it was provided … and, what if they refuse to sign receipt of such???? Do we make a stand and just “sit” in the lobby until somebody does? Such crap.

    See you Saturday.

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  35. steven says:

    I JUST CALLED SAN DIEGO PD THEY SAID NO CLUE ABOUT PROP 35 AND THAT IT WONT EVEN GO IN TO EFFECT TIL JAN 1ST SO HE TOLD ME WE DONT HAVE TO SUMMIT ANYTHING AS OF NOW ………………… PLEASE INFORM ALL RSO SO NOT TO VOLUNTARILY GIVE PERSON INFOTO POLICE ITS NOT A LAW TIL JANUARY 1ST LOVE AND PEACE AND FREEDOM FOR ALL

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  36. Terry says:

    I’m an RSO. I’m off probation. I feel like we all got life. Even though they call this administrative law. They make complying almost impossible. Of course, everyone has to look tough on crime. All of these bloated public safety budgets want grant money. I wouldn’t be to surprised they will demand we are microchipped. It wouldn’t surprise me in the least. We are probably the most politically vulnerable group out there. I think we should sue the legislation and the courts for padding careers of questionable legislators and cops. Yes we did wrong. Yes the courts punished us. But if we were Hollywood types or prominent members of government, you have read the scandals, they abuse kids and continue to serve. I say it applies to all of us prosecuted and convicted for sex crimes. We are supposed to have due process and equal protection. Where is it?

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  37. get our rights says:

    I just turned in my info to Glendale PD fronth desk.
    After that finally I was able to contact officer in charge of 290.
    He had no clue what I was talking about. He didn’t even heard anout prop 35.
    However, he thanked for it and said he will get mydroped mail from fronth and
    Will contact me if neccecery .
    I turned in my info just to be on safe side. Better be safe than sorry.
    Hopefully things well for all of us.

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  38. DZ says:

    Steven, be careful. I found this:
    http://www.dof.ca.gov/fisa/bag/initiatives%20and%20propositions.htm

    It describes the CA law on how propositions become law. While some propositions state they go into effect at a later date, such as ‘Jan.1st’ it says that unless the proposition states this, the proposition goes into effect the day after it is voted on. I’ve just read the proposition again and did not see anything stating a date for it to go into effect, which would mean it defaults to going into effect today.

    Likely the officer you talked to in San Diego doesn’t know this, and law being what it is in CA, his ignorance of the law isn’t any more excuse than anyone else’s. Unless they gave you something signed saying you tried, but they don’t want your internet list, then should they realize their mistake and want to arrest you for violating registration, they can do it.

    ‘Immediately’ isn’t defined, though I would think 24 hours to supply the information is reasonable since it states any change must be notified within 24 hours. However, that would put the deadline at tomorrow, and today might be safer. I’ve yet to contact them since I’m still hoping for word today that there will be a block on this law.

    I share a house with two friends, neither of whom have any legal problems:how is giving the police my internet provider not a violation of their privacy if the info is used to track activity? For that matter, should they do something illegal wouldn’t the police jump to the conclusion it is me and use it against me? For another, what use is the information anyway? Knowing the company that connects me to the internet doesn’t really provide any useful tool to them does it? It doesn’t show activity,they’d still need a warrant to access the account? though in this age of the Patriot Act that might be easy to get around.

    And yes, I am tired of being considered a constant threat when there is no reasonable belief I would be one. I’m tired of the constant anxiety that more rights will be taken away. I’m tired of the stress from wondering what new law will be retroactively applied to me,despite no constitutional ground that it should be. I’m tired of knowing that a foolish choice I made that was only serious enough to get me 1 year in prison leaves me with less rights after I supposedly ‘paid for my crime’ than repeat drug dealers, violent gang members, even murderers. They have no issue starting over and rejoining society, why should I? I am tired of waiting, while Immigration delays my application for my fiancee to come to this country- over a year now for something that should take 3-5 months, apparently planning to use the Adam-Walsh act against me, to deny her coming here- though the act clearly says it prevents anyone with a violent crime from sponsoring a foreign wife or fiancee, and my crime was not violent, yet still they ignore me and my immigration lawyer. Where is the luxury of the term ‘ex-con’ for me? I am a law abiding person with no intent to ever hurt anyone, why do I not merit the pursuit of happiness?

    My lay opinion: sit tight for awhile, hope to hear what happens today, but be ready to contact the police with your list of email addresses & internet handles (only) and the company name (not IP address) of the company that provides your internet access, and have a ‘receipt’ written up to have them sign it. Wouldn’t hurt to take pictures of these things when you’re in the police station for added protection. Hand-delivery would be better than registered mail.

    Good luck everyone. For the sake of all rso’s, their families, and in fact, society as a whole, I hope this law is struck down.

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  39. J says:

    The ambiguity of everything is just ridiculous. We can’t even get official word of what EXACTLY is required and when.

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  40. Jeff says:

    I don’t know what this means but it is already being challenged by several groups including the ACLU. Did they get an injunction I do not know but here is the article I found.

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/c19fecd4-28fd-11e2-9591-00144feabdc0.html#axzz2BZDOJkjE

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    • Jeff says:

      Challenge to California’s Proposition 35

      By April Dembosky in San Francisco

      The passage of a California law that requires sex offenders to register their online user names and email addresses with the police was a victory for Facebook’s former privacy chief, but faces a legal challenge from opponents, who have already filed a lawsuit against it.

      Chris Kelly, who became the social network’s first chief privacy officer in 2005 and stayed until 2009, was the largest donor to the initiative, known on the state election ballot as Proposition 35.

      Passed by a large majority of Californians voting on Tuesday, the new law introduces harsher penalties for people convicted of labour and sex trafficking. It includes a clause that all registered sex offenders must give their online identities and internet access information to the local police department.

      Opponents of the law say that requirement violates constitutional rights to free speech under the first amendment to the US constitution. The American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California and the Electronic Frontier Foundation filed a class-action lawsuit in federal court on Wednesday.

      “This provision essentially eliminates the ability of registrants to engage in anonymous online speech and imposes a substantial burden whenever a registrant wants to use a new online platform to speech,” the ACLU of Northern California said in a statement.

      In California, and most other states in the US, people convicted of sex crimes are required to provide their physical address to the local police department; it is then entered into a database and made available to the public. California passed this law in 2004. Known in most states as Megan’s Law, it is named after a seven-year-old girl in New Jersey who was raped and killed by a known sex offender living across the street from her family.

      With the rising popularity of social networking sites, concern has grown that sex offenders can track and interact with children online, putting pressure on politicians to expand Megan’s Law to provide more transparency around online identities, such as Facebook profiles and email addresses.

      Facebook confronted such safety issues in its early years, after two undercover investigators from the New York attorney-general’s office created fake accounts in 2007 and posed as sex offenders, soliciting teenage users of the site.

      Mr Kelly co-operated with the office to develop stricter safety protocols and faster response times in relation to complaints of inappropriate sexual content on the site. He also helped write the company’s first safety, privacy and security policies, and oversaw the development of technology features to enhance safety.

      He continued to be a champion for online safety after he left Facebook, making it a feature of his own political campaign when he ran for attorney-general of California in 2010. That bid for office was unsuccessful.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up Thumb down +1

  41. DZ says:

    Thanks for the info Jeff.
    I hope they can at least get a temporary injunction today, to give time for these legal actions.

    I find it ironic that in the link provided, one would have to register with the site in order to read the article, which if you create a new handle you haven’t used before, would require you to notify the police that you have done so. This law is ridiculous.

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    • Jeff says:

      I apologize I did not know that the link took you to the homepage until after I posted it. That’s why I copied and pasted the article in the comment section. That is pretty ironic though as you stated.

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  42. J says:

    I assume that the injunction filed by the ACLU/EFF must be approved by a judge. Does this typically happen within a 24-hour time-frame?

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  43. Fish caught in 290 net says:

    I went my usual registration place this morning, had to wait until 9am (they now refuse 290 registration earlier, recent change. This after they stopped saturday registration 2 years ago). Thy had no clue as to Prop 35 and didn’t want my information, told me it would be handle at my next annual (11 months from now). After I pussh a little (staying very nice in the face of their unpleasent deamenors), they referred me to the SONAR unit at the county, the SONAR unit did even know their was a Prop 35 on the ballot, after explaining again, same story it come up next time I register or they will contact me. I suggested I call bakc in a week to see in there were any updates, they said give it a month and hung up… I took notice of the sign in log at the PD and saved my cell phone call records….

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  44. C says:

    Someone actually already walked a list into the local PD? Man, talk about Sheeple.
    That list probably went right into the Round File. I am not giving anyone any personal information until they demand it and have a mechanism for receiving it.

    What does Chris Kelly, a FORMER Facebook executive and failed AG candidate stand to gain from this becoming law? He donated milions to get this passed.

    http://elections.latimes.com/voterguide-2012/prop-35/

    Why? Another run at AG? Could he own the software development company that will contract with the state(s) to track all these RSO Internet accounts? It’s easy to track the money on this one. What’s in it for him?

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    • J says:

      He gets to “build” his reputation for further attempts at gaining political office.

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    • Joe says:

      @C – Thank you for pointing this out… I am glad I am not the only one who noticed that CK most likely made a small fortune by turning the internet into a place that provides a platform for the offensive behavior in the first place. Now he is using the very conditions he helped create to his own benefit again – the exact extent of which remains to be seen.

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      • C says:

        Awesome point – he had a hand in creating an environment for young people to be victimized and play a first hand role in a media driven society that sexualizes young people.
        Like Jimmy Carter working so hard for Habitat for Humanity, he is atoning for his sins and trying to preserve his legacy.

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  45. MM says:

    Found this article regarding 35 … per the author, the law is effective now, today and RSO’s will have 24 hours to provide their information. (hope the link works)

    http://news.cnet.com/8301-13578_3-57546575-38/critics-raise-specter-of-police-state-in-challenge-to-new-calif-law/

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    • C says:

      Just because CNET quotes the “immediately” part like everyyone else does not mean anything more than any other article about this ill conceived, poorly written law. Let’s see how the petition for an injunction plays out in the short term and leave it to the man to work out the long the long term details if it stands at all.

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  46. WillB says:

    The federal judge here in Nebraska has already deemed that this type of law is unconstitutional and violates the First Amendment fourth amendment and equal protection clauses of the federal Constitution even went so far as to say that the intent was punitive. And in violation of the ex post facto clause As applied to people before its inception.

    Granted, somebody is going to have to challenge it in court in calf. But since you already have a federal decision on this. It should be a slamdunk

    Note that the decision is approximately 70 pages long, and the judge really blasts. The legislators

    If somebody from California RSOL. or the California ACLU wants to contact me I have the complete filings, as well as the decision that I can pass along to you To use in your case Since I had to use my e-mail to register to send this. The administrators will have access to that e-mail address

    THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
    FOR THE DISTRICT OF NEBRASKA
    JOHN DOE, et al., ) Plaintiffs,
    STATE OF NEBRASKA, et al. Defendants.
    8:09CV456
    4:10CV3266
    DATED this 17th day of October, 2012.
    BY THE COURT:
    Richard G. Kopf
    Senior United States District Judge

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up Thumb down +3

    • Janice Bellucci says:

      Thank you for this information, Will B! I now have the decision and will share it with the Prop. 35 legal team. This is the type of assistance that is greatly appreciated from our members. In a state as big as California, it’s important to have eyes and ears everywhere!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up Thumb down +3

  47. nathan says:

    Yes, Janice this is what I was talking about in my email to you
    Great to see you on this
    Thanks
    Good Job

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up Thumb down +1

  48. stephen says:

    I don’t understand when I have registered in the past they already have me give them my email and any social networking as it is on the form are you all saying they had no right to make me give them this information until now

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up Thumb down +1

  49. Skeletonlander says:

    Stephen,

    You need to read penal code section 290 in detail. It pertains to EXACTLY what you need to provide to the police, what the timing of each of these events are that require you to update your information and what the consequences of not providing the information mean to you. Informed is protected. Here is a link to the law as it now stands:

    http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/displaycode?section=pen&group=00001-01000&file=290-294

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    • huh? says:

      So @Skeletonlander, I looked at your link – thank you – and it looks like registration components are listed in 290.015, which is here (different format for brevity sake). http://law.onecle.com/california/penal/290.015.html

      There is no mention of email addresses, social networking names, etc, but there is a place on the form. So

      1) are my reading skills lacking and it is in PC 290 somewhere?,
      2) it is on the form – has been for a while – and the registrant is under no legal obligation to provide it (but who knows that?) and it has been harvested for who knows how long and for who knows how many people?
      3) it is not on the form and I am getting senile, or
      4) something else?

      Any light you can shed on this would be much appreciated, since you seem to know.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up Thumb down 0

  50. wifey22 says:

    just checking in…I was told that a hold was placed on the law. Does that mean we don’t have to head downtown to update my husbands registry? I have downloaded a copy of the court order….just want to make sure it it legit and we aren’t missing anything. We are in San Jose, CA.

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  51. MM says:

    TRO is in effect until 11/19 … Keep coming to this site and it will keep you updated, best they can! Thank you Janice & crew.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up Thumb down +1

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