Online gamer busted for library WiFi use, dorkiness


Police in Palmer, Alaska recently made an odd bust. No, the perpetrator wasn't dealing drugs or selling stolen car parts: he was, quite simply, getting his online game on. 21 year-old Brian Tanner was sitting in the parking lot of his local public library, playing a little World of Warcraft on his laptop, when the fuzz descended upon his vehicle and confiscated his machine. The reason? Tanner was using the Library's WiFi signal after hours, which, apparently, is in violation of the library's usage rules for the free service.

This raises a few interesting questions: Was the WiFi usage policy posted in a place where users could be expected to see it (i.e. displayed on a web page upon connecting to the service)? Did Tanner even know about the after-hours stipulation? And why didn't the library simply hit the kill switch on their WAP if they're so concerned about people accessing it after closing? To be fair, Tanner "had been chased out of a number of locations around Palmer where he had been latching on to wireless service." And since he was (presumably) playing World of Warcraft in a car in the parking lot of the library, you know that he's got to be the sort of unapologetic, Cheetos-munching dork that's hard to sympathize with. Still, did they really have to go this far? Tanner is currently waiting to see if he will face criminal charges and is, presumably, hoping that he saved his game first.

For more on this story:
- see this article at United Press International

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