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P2P Bits

michael posted more than 9 years ago | from the law-of-the-jungle dept.

The Internet 300

yohaas writes "Two Op-Ed stories today in the NY Times address music sharing. In one Kembrew McLeod says that the lawsuits aren't working and gives some alternate suggestions. In the other Harvard Law professor William Fisher says that the industry is going about the situation in the wrong way, concluding that 'the record industry's response to file sharing--trying to block the technology altogether--would generate the worst of all possible results'. Neither article is comprehensive, but they are good read nonetheless." Reader Brill Pappin points out that Canadians aren't afraid of the music industry. And reader The Importance of Being Earnest writes "The INDUCE Act, which would make it a crime to 'induce' copyright infringement, such as by inventing things like the Betamax, has finally been officially introduced. The bill has been renamed the Inducing Infringement of Copyrights Act [PDF]. In addition to the name change, there has been another slight modication: 'counsel' is no longer part of the proposed statute. Here is a line-by-line refutation of Hatch's introduction [PDF] to the Act. EFF has shown how broad the Act is by writing a mock lawsuit [PDF] suing Apple (for making the iPod), C|Net (for reviewing the iPod), and Toshiba (for supplying hard drives for iPods). Previous Slashdot coverage here."

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#rd Post! (1)

Ads are broken (718513) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530554)

now

I heard that Mary-Kate Olsen died today (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530555)

Can anyone confirm?

Re:I heard that Mary-Kate Olsen died today (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530676)

It was her twin.

The . . IICA act? (1)

OverlordQ (264228) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530586)

Well atleast they dropped the Child Exploitation part.

Warning - (3, Funny)

calypso15 (767323) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530588)

If bill is passed, please INDUCE vomitting.

You US'ians sure have a twisted law system (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530589)

How do you put up with having your freedoms taken away bit by bit any day, every day?

And WHY do you put up with it?

I really don't understand...

Re:You US'ians sure have a twisted law system (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530629)

Because we don't have enough money to get our government to listen to us. Don't worry about us, though, it's only a matter of time before enough people realize that guns are a hell of a lot cheaper than lobbying.

Re:You US'ians sure have a twisted law system (-1, Offtopic)

Radon Knight (684275) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531009)

Don't worry about us, though, it's only a matter of time before enough people realize that guns are a hell of a lot cheaper than lobbying.

Yeah, because the kinds of guns you can legally buy in a store are a real match for the kind of firepower the US military packs, I hear.

I suggest you quit thinking that the 2nd amendment is somehow going to save you from government oppression. It's just not possible. Look at the difference of firepower, and what has to be gained by the winning side.

Re:You US'ians sure have a twisted law system (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530708)

And where are you from? England or England's bitch, Canada? Either way, how do you put up with having an 80 year old in-bred ass tell you how to live your life?

Re:You US'ians sure have a twisted law system (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530749)

Maybe it's a hard to grasp concept, but there is quite a lot more outside those area's you named.

Now repeat after me:

I won't be Anglo-centric anymore

Now, doesn't that feel better?

Re:You US'ians sure have a twisted law system (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530932)

I tried repeating after you but it came out as: I fucking hate everybody.

yay for legalized bribery! (5, Insightful)

lordkuri (514498) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530593)

great.. more laws BOUGHT to prop up an obsolete business model.

when do we start enforcing the constitution and putting a stop to legalized political bribery?

-lk

Re:yay for legalized bribery! (4, Interesting)

southpolesammy (150094) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530653)

Not a law yet, just a bill. And given Sen. Hatch's track record, I wouldn't worry too much about it becoming law.

Re:yay for legalized bribery! (4, Insightful)

the_mad_poster (640772) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530687)

It's consistent worrying about this flaming asshat's policy of blatantly handing out free kicks in the nuts to consumers on behalf of business interests that has prevented him from having a good track record on bad bills.

By all means - knock the hand wringing up a notch.

Re:yay for legalized bribery! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530782)

when someone else can buy the congressmen besides big business

Re:yay for legalized bribery! (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530918)

Political bribery need to be criminalized and a strict system set up to ensure that no bribery happens under the table. Even if that system involves something drastic like: having the state control all of the politician's money or monitoring them around the clock.

Just as the USA has a separation between church and state there needs to be a separation of industry and state.

back on topic: making it illegal to invent things is a very innovative way to stifle innovation.

Not my area of expertise (legal or IP) (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530596)

"The INDUCE Act, which would make it a crime to 'induce' copyright infringement, such as by inventing things like the Betamax, has finally been officially introduced. The bill has been renamed the Inducing Infringement of Copyrights Act"...isn't a loophole for this simply making a multi-funtion method for *whatever* where one of the funtions happens to circumvent or break copyright protections?

Re:Not my area of expertise (legal or IP) (4, Insightful)

kfg (145172) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531058)

No need. Everything can already be used to break copyright if you try hard enough. iPods, VCRs? Pffffft! Tip of the iceberg. Here, let me give you a concrete example of using a device to infringe upon a copyright:

Three rings for the elven kings under the sky,
Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,
Nine for mortal men doomed to die,
One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne
In the land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.


RUuuuuh roh, Rasro! AMD, ASUS, Addtronics, nVidia and NEC have now all induced me to infringe upon a copyright.

The printing press that made the book I copied it from could itself induce copyright infringment. A pen, a charred stick, both induce copyright infringment. The pen is used for such all the time. A Q-tip can be used as a pen. All artist supplies can infringe both visual art and literary art.

I can take this 10 mm box wrench and use it to scratch "Three rings for the elven kings" in the dirt or on a concrete wall.

The prosecutorial scope of this bill is infinite. It isn't a "loophole" when anything can be used as a copyright infringing device, it's an "Everybody goes to jail free" card.

Here, let me give another example, although I can't do this one directly, so you'll have to imagine the scene:

Here I am, standing in a large empty space, I have no impliments and only have on as much clothing as is necessary to make the image palitable to you, now -- I beging to recite. . .

Three rings for the elven kings. . .

My parents have just become illegal.

KFG

Fingers crossed.... (1)

lukewarmfusion (726141) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530603)

Fingers crossed... ...that this act never makes it as a law. ...that the EFF's mock lawsuit is seen and understood by people with influence. ...that Senator Hatch's financial backing discredits his attempts to ruin intellectual property.

Re:Fingers crossed.... (2, Interesting)

sixteenraisins (67316) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530987)

Even more frightening (and this may be slightly OT) is that if this bill passes and becomes law, it could (will?) open the door for similar legislation reaching to other types of technology as well.

Think about it - if they outlaw a certain piece of technology solely because it could be used to circumvent copyright (the iPod is a good example), then how long will it be before some capitol hill schmuck decides to author a law making other devices illegal? After all, a rifle could be used to shoot someone, a car could be used to race illegally, and a toaster could be used to electrocute someone in the bathtub.

I'm not necessarily saying that this would certainly happen; only that a bill like this would open the door for it. You just watch.

I may screw this up... (5, Insightful)

trainsnpep (608418) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530608)

I remember a quote from a book I read abuot 5 years ago....or something like it.

To make a pig go forward, tie a string around its leg and pull it backward.

The basic instinct of anyone or anything - pig or human (or as the RIAA seems to consider P2P users pigs) - is to go the opposite of the way you're being directed. Now, I'm not saying the RIAA should encourage P2P, I'm just saying they are definitely going about it the wrong way. I've gotta agree, they're doing it all the wrong way. Perhaps some positive campaigns, not negative ones?

Re:I may screw this up... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530700)

The thing is you have to be forcing them to do something they don't want to do for them to react like that. Simply advertising P2P as a good thing for the RIAA is going to get more people using P2P. Because they like it.

Re:I may screw this up... (2, Interesting)

I8TheWorm (645702) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530963)

Have you seen the MPAA commercials? They're showing pictures of the production crew, editors, etc... and that downloading movies affects these people and their families. Quite the opposite PR campaign that the RIAA is using which is "stop downloading or these large corporate executives will have to buy a smaller yacht."

I wonder if the MPAA campaign is appealing to the public any better?

Re:I may screw this up... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9531068)


Judging by the guffaws in the theatres every time I see one, no.

Re:I may screw this up... (1)

Ark42 (522144) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531080)


You know those "truth" cigaratte ads? We need propaganda that is on the opposite side like that for things like this as well. As much as the "truth" ads really bend the truth to really make cigarettes look even worse then they are, I like seeing those comercials, they are kinda funny even.

Re:I may screw this up... (5, Interesting)

vDave420 (649776) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530970)

The basic instinct of anyone or anything - pig or human (or as the RIAA seems to consider P2P users pigs) - is to go the opposite of the way you're being directed.

RIAA bashing will get you your +5, despite being factually inaccurate.

I like bashing RIAA as much as the next /.er, and working at a p2p company, I have good reason.

However, the truth of the situation is that despite having reservations over being told what to do, most people merely accept instructions from authority [google.com] without questioning them.

I would say that desipte RIAA attmpeting to shut down my business, that they are, in fact, going about the situation in "the right way(tm)", where "right" in this context means "likely to achieve the majority of self interest goals", if for no other reason than because most people don't question "authoritative answers" to issues they encounter.

I fairly recently had a discussion with a friend of mine, who fairly clearly demonstrated this principle. She had heard on the "FOX news" that downloading mp3s would cause you to go to jail. When I asked about this, seeking more details from her (remember, I make p2p software, so am interested in average people's thoughts on the subject) she actively avoided putting any thought into the subject, and instead rapidly retreated to the comfort of TV-delivered answers, as stated in passing moments across the "news" about it being illegal or being responsible for "starving artists" or "child porn".

To me, it just reinforced my oppinion that the average person (and this friend is truly an average American) would rather just accept the "Authoritative answer from TV" to nearly any problem or situation encountered.

What a long post to disagree with your off-the-cuff statement, eh?

-dave-

Canada and the music industry (2, Informative)

nostriluu (138310) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530610)

Reader Brill Pappin points out that Canadians aren't afraid of the music industry.

Not really true, there's just a bit of confusion going on now. The courts are sorting it out for us and will let us know if we should be afraid or not real soon.

There was a photo of the Culture minister wearing a t-shirt that said "I support canadianmusic.com." Of course, it really should have said "I support thecanadianmusicindustry.com." Two entirely different things.

Canada not afraid (5, Informative)

jeepee (607566) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530614)



Pretty logic Canadians are not afraid....
File sharing is legal here...

http://news.com.com/2100-1027-5182641.html [com.com]

Re:Canada not afraid (3, Informative)

Otter (3800) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530781)

In the Canadians' defense, aren't they already paying a surcharge on recordable media and MP3 players to the music industry? It seems unfair to preemptively tax them for copyright infringement and then complain when they infringe.

Re:Canada not afraid (1)

ConceptJunkie (24823) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530804)

Well, at least it gives you something to do while waiting for your heart surgery. ;-)

Seriously though, I bet it won't last much longer. Canada's a smaller market than the U.S., but I'm sure the Media Hegemony hasn't forgotten about it. Wait, are those cross-hairs I see on the Great White North? Good luck, Canada.

Re:Canada not afraid (4, Interesting)

56 (527333) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530878)

I go to the University of Toronto, and a girl from my college, Vic, got her internet connection suspended after a round of threats from, if I remember correctly, Paramount. I guess it could have just been scare tactics, but you wouldn't think the university would be willing to set a precident like that if they didn't feel like they had a reason to back down.

The Vic newspaper said she was using Kazaa, which doesn't make much sense as we have our own UToronto-wide file-sharing network using DC++ that goes at like 7mpbs and has a huge selection...

The article you cite is dated March 31, so maybe the instance I'm referencing took place prior to that date.

Re:Canada not afraid (3, Interesting)

Ubergrendle (531719) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530975)

I'm not so sure that its legal, just that the CIRA has not come up with a viable copyright infringement legal case that works within our justice system...yet. Once they have a framework, I fully expect numerous lawsuits in a similar vein to the RIAA.

We're in the midst of federal elections here. Unfortunately its the standard issue of compromised choices. I can vote for the Conservatives, who although state they are hands-off for business subsidies and want to eliminate CANCON, they also would override the canadian consititution in issues of gay rights, want to privatise healthcare, and have heavy backing by funadmentalist christian groups from the rural western provinces.

Alternatively, I can vote for the Liberals who have been plagued with spending scandals, are firm supporters of CANCON, and wish to strengthen copyrights rules. Unfortunately they're the more progressive party in terms of personal rights and freedoms and have a less aggressive tax-cut strategy.

The New Democratic Party would raise taxes both on the recording industry and on the CDs... no one would buy them anymore, and the recording companies would go bankrupt. ;)

Re:Canada not afraid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9531107)

Vote for the Bloc

http://www.blocquebecois.org/

Re:Canada not afraid (1)

poot_rootbeer (188613) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531011)


Of course you Canadians don't have to fear the CRIA coming after you.

They get money every time you buy a blank CD-R or MP3 player. They don't have to threaten you to get your pound of flesh... because they already have it.

Ironic... (3, Insightful)

Shoeler (180797) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530617)

That the RIAA is spending millions or tens of millions or more of their "hard earned" money to combat piracy, but yet they see fit to increase the price of downloaded songs from iTunes, Napster, etc. At $.99 songs were a bargain, but why the hell would I go out to download an album that I can buy on a CD for the same price???

Re:Ironic... (2, Insightful)

Fearless Freep (94727) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530908)

If the RIAA really actually cared about the *artits* they would spend a lot more time working to make sure the *artists* got more money per CD and didn't get acidentally trapped into vicious contracts

There's a *lot* more the RIAA could de doing to help the people they supposedly reresent then going after file sharing. I mean, if a CD is sold a few less times due to downloads then the artists loses a few hundred bucks and the record company loses thousands. If the RIAA really cared about the money the arist was making or losing, they'd be fighting the record company to change the way contracts work so that the artist *gets* more then spare change per cd

Not that I think filesharing s right in it's own, but who is the RIAA really repersenting? Their targeting seems to be off a bit

Re:Ironic... (2, Interesting)

I8TheWorm (645702) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531000)

Go to The RIAA's site [riaa.com] where they make no bones at all about the fact that they represent the labels. They make an aside that they sort of represent artists, but only because they fight for freedom of speech so the labels can sell more CD's.

Notice, also, that they're a .com, rather than a .org ;)

Re:Ironic... (1)

Fearless Freep (94727) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531055)

Go to The RIAA's site where they make no bones at all about the fact that they represent the labels.

Maybe they should change the name from "Recording Industry Artists of Amercia" to something abit more honest then?

Other perspectives (4, Interesting)

sphealey (2855) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530625)

I think it is important to read Jerry Pournelle's perspective [jerrypournelle.com] as well, however. As a person who has earned his living from selling written works for more than 30 years, he brings a different viewpoint to the discussion, and asks some good questions of the more radical end of the anti-DRM group.

sPh

Jerry Pournelle... a joke (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530794)

about 15-20 years ago, I was a contributing editor in a long defunct computer magazine.

At a meeting, we had read Jerry's latest rant. It was a particularly idiotic rant, which was saying something. As a rule, he generally gave good reviews to equipment that was given to him and the manufacturer sent a tech to his house to get it set up.

Anyway, I asked the editor in chief (as I was a young pup), why do people read him, and why does the magazine employee him.

He likened Jerry to the town drunk. Yea, you know he a stupid drunk, no you don't take him seriously, but he is a helluva a lot of fun to watch stumble around.

It has always been this bad (2, Insightful)

nebaz (453974) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530635)

I could start about how corporations have bought the congress and that we are going down a road to hell, but unfortunately it has been this way for a long time [www.uhb.fr]

Whoa there with the brainwashing (4, Insightful)

bigberk (547360) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530659)

... address music sharing. In one Kembrew McLeod says that the lawsuits aren't working
Does anyone else notice a pretty serious effort to associate, psychologically, music sharing with illegal activities? The two don't always go together. I share legitimate music on the Internet with strangers. And I legitimately share music I own with close friends. They're trying to brainwash us (and it's working BTW)

Re:Whoa there with the brainwashing (1)

lukewarmfusion (726141) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530776)

Aside from psychologically criminalizing the legal types of music sharing, there is also a dangerous attempt to equate the admittedly illegal file-sharing with stealing.

The argument goes something like this:

"If you go into a store, find a CD, and walk out without paying for it - that's stealing." Most people agree that it's wrong, so you already have them halfway there. Then you equate downloading to shoplifting a CD.

Shoplifting a CD will get you a fine and/or some minor jail time. Download a single song from the internet, and you can be sued for up to $250,000 and/or jailed (for willfully violating copyright). How are these equal again?

Re:Whoa there with the brainwashing (1)

FuzzyBad-Mofo (184327) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530946)

I see a lot of posts here lately which are supportive of the record industry's claims, but I wonder how much of that is just astroturfing.

A concerned Internet User (2, Interesting)

Psymunn (778581) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531016)

Man, there's this great ad campaign in Vancouver, BC where a kid gets caught stealing a candy bar and just tells his dad 'but you steal satellite singals.' It's brought to you by the concerned statelite people of north america or something.
Man, i love those 'Concerened X's of Y.' Who are these people. Are they a a group of house wives (or husbands) who get together and say 'our society is falling to pieces, we must raise money to publish adds that will make satelite-single-stealers/internet-pirates/movie-bo otleggers feel bad about themselves?!? I just wish the cable companies or record companies would flat out admit it's them who are frowning apon what you are doing
At the end of teh day, I'm goign to give up UT because 'killing people online is still killing.'
And remember children: 'When you download MP3s, you Download Communism!!!'

There goes ftp... (2, Insightful)

jbeaupre (752124) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530661)

Can't write ftp code. Could be used to copy files... Worse, don't try reading a childrens book to your kids while away on business (which the US Navy encourages by offering recording services). Unlawful encoding of copyrited material.

Re:There goes ftp... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530815)

Does this mean that I have to remove the CTRL and C and V keys off my keyboard?

Re:There goes ftp... (2, Insightful)

Patrik_AKA_RedX (624423) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530921)

Even pen and pencils are ilegal then. Those can be used to copy written IP.

Like things are going I expect to see Americans, Canadians and Europeans seeking refuge in Cuba.

That proves it.... (5, Funny)

Kenja (541830) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530663)

File sharing is legal in Canada and its had no effect on the quality of music and art, just look at all the high quiality IP comming out of the land up north! I even hear that Shatner is back in the recording studio.

Re:That proves it.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530962)

I realize you are attempting to be funny (and the mods would seem to agree), but.....

> I even hear that Shatner is back in the recording studio.

But, the said studio is (pause)in (pause)the (pause)states.

Is it just me? (0, Flamebait)

FS1 (636716) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530665)

Orrin Hatch needs to be voted out of office promptly and permanently. In fact he should be barred from participating in any political process for the rest of his life.

Re:Is it just me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530738)

Hatch is a classic example of a politician without principles. He is completely beholden to his financiers -- SCO, LDS, Kennecott Copper, etc. His first interest is lining his own pockets and campaign coffers. He is neither conservative or liberal. He is just a sleazeball.

Re:Is it just me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530797)

Since when is the truth flamebait?

Re:Is it just me? (2, Insightful)

KevinKnSC (744603) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530802)

Um, have you ever been to Utah?

Re:Is it just me? (1)

vegetablespork (575101) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531099)

You forgot about the part where he should be anally violated with the business end of a plunger in front of the LDS temple. OK, that part might be optional, but it'd still be pretty cool.

Neither of the NYT articles get it.. (5, Interesting)

CashCarSTAR (548853) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530680)

Both assume that somehow the RIAA should play nice with alternative distribution/promotion methods, and somehow that they are trying to do that, just going about it the wrong way.

Frankly, that's foolish.

The RIAA has absolutly nothing to gain by releasing the promotional controls they have over the industry. Why? Because it completly removes all their power. P2P/Webcasting make the threat of the next big thing coming up outside their reach very possible...and possibly very likly.

The fight over P2P and webcasting is not intended to raise money in the short term, it's intended to monopolize the promotional channels to ensure their long-term relevence.

Re:Neither of the NYT articles get it.. (1)

rsteele19 (150541) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530917)

Exactly right. The royalty system proposed by the EFF would go a long way to levelling the playing field between the major labels and the independent artists. When a band can record and release an album themselves, promote it on the internet and get paid for every download, who needs a major label?

Expect the RIAA to do everything within their power to ensure that such a scheme will not be implemented.

Re:Neither of the NYT articles get it.. (1)

Deliveranc3 (629997) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531023)

One group who could actually make a diffrence is the artists.

For a long time the only way for them to make money has been through contracts with soul stealing capabilities, one would expect them to jump on this alternative.

Course then you have the beasty boys thing and you wonder if they even give a f*#C. (Swearing was called for, in this case).

Re:Neither of the NYT articles get it.. (2, Informative)

hackstraw (262471) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531036)

People, stop thinking of the RIAA as a company. They are not. They don't have any distribution or promotion methods. They do 2 things. They "give" labels to albums that have sold X numbers of copies (gold, platinum, etc), and they go to court. Don't believe me, read it from them.

If I were a lawyer, and couldn't get a real job, playing the RIAA game would certainly pay the bills.

Problem with Paying a Monthly Fee for file-sharing (1)

osewa77 (603622) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530693)

One of the linked sites proposes that a monthly access fee that allows users to share files indiscriminately('freely') is the ultimate and best solution. The problem with this is, how are we going to determine how the money will be distributed among the many target beneficiaries (the various record companies, the artists and composers who are paid a commission, etc.)
_____
Internet, Productivity Blog

Re:Problem with Paying a Monthly Fee for file-shar (2, Interesting)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530881)

Well, there's a fairly simple solution to that.

Expand the issue to not being merely file sharing (which is an issue of reproduction and distribution) but expand it to the entire scope of copyright (so that this scheme would also apply to creating derivatives, and some public distributions and performances and such), and then instead of paying a monthly fee, don't pay at all. But rather than make this available altogether, which would merely be the abolishment of copyright, instead only permit natural persons to be shielded by this, provided they are acting noncommercially.

Then things become pretty simple: ordinary people don't pay artists at all, unless either a) they want to (because they feel charitable, or can't find an alternative source for the works) or b) they're using it commercially. Businesses would of course have to pay regardless of whether or not they're using the work commercially.

How that money is allocated would be just as it is now: up to the various parties involved to hash out.

Re:Problem with Paying a Monthly Fee for file-shar (1)

Roskolnikov (68772) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531024)

Funny thing, I already pay a monthly fee for file sharing, talk to my ISP.

The silver lining in the falling sky... (5, Interesting)

Mr. Neutron (3115) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530702)

Let's say the EFF's worst nightmare scenario occurs, and legislation eventually gets passed making all sorts of things, from DRM-free hard drives to writing simple Internet clients, to "unprotected" ADCs in every possible consumer device, illegal. Eventually the people are going to realize that we've stumbled into Regulations Hell, and the people will demand a repeal of all of these stupid laws. "Load a program, go to jail" laws will not be popular, and when ordinary people start getting busted for doing utterly benign things, there will be a backlash.

The simple fact of the matter is that the existance of the Internet has made unlimited digital sharing a reality. The genie's out, people love getting free stuff, and nothing short of a police state is going to stop it. The content providers are either going to have to find a business model to take advantage of this, or learn to live with it. It's that simple.

Re:The silver lining in the falling sky... (1)

Teppy (105859) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530819)

Oh yeah? Name one time since the revolutionary war that people "realize that we've stumbled into Regulations Hell, and...demand a repeal of all of these stupid laws."

Re:The silver lining in the falling sky... (3, Insightful)

Mr. Neutron (3115) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530948)

The repeal of Prohibition, passed February 20, 1933, ratified December 5, 1933

Re:The silver lining in the falling sky... (1)

McNally (105243) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531067)

Oh yeah? Name one time since the revolutionary war that people "realize that we've stumbled into Regulations Hell, and...demand a repeal of all of these stupid laws."

someone will probably beat me to this, but the obvious example would be Prohibition, no? that one actually required the repeal of a constitutional amendment!

Re:The silver lining in the falling sky... (1)

Deliveranc3 (629997) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530992)

See we are well past that point.

The sad thing is that companies are able to get rights and file lawsuits when it's "possible" their rights are being infringed while the people of America who's rights "Are" being infringed are too disorganized to do anything about it.

Vote Hatch I guess.

Re:The silver lining in the falling sky... (1)

Patrik_AKA_RedX (624423) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531010)

Eventually the people are going to realize that we've stumbled into Regulations Hell, and the people will demand a repeal of all of these stupid laws.
Unlikely. Joe Sixpack, like always, will moan and put up with it. Would you risk your easy and confortable life over this?

Re:The silver lining in the falling sky... (2, Insightful)

bigberk (547360) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531060)

The simple fact of the matter is that the existance of the Internet has made unlimited digital sharing a reality. The genie's out, people love getting free stuff, and nothing short of a police state is going to stop it.
Exactly. I would take it further toward basics. One of the fundamental design purposes of a digital computer is to copy information perfectly. This is what data storage and retrieval is all about! Right now you're sitting at a desktop machine, the result of billions of dollars of research, all to ensure reliable and efficient data duplication/processing. Trying to restrict actions (like media copying, format conversions, data uploads) is just plain silly when you've got math and physics against you.

What we're seeing is a conflict between the desires of a corporation and the realities of modern digital computing infrastructure. Digital computing is going to win, because we need it.

Here's an analogy. In India, multinationals have tried to enforce patent rights on seeds to prevent locals from sharing crop seeds as they have always done traditionally. But a seed grows when it is placed in the ground, and plants reproduce -- this is nature's design. The people decreed that they will plant and swap seeds despite what law tells them to do.

And soon that's what we will do too (in the digital context) because things are approaching sillyness.

List of those to sue so far (5, Funny)

f0rtytw0 (446153) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530705)

I hope this passes since it could be great at generating income for me or at least be a great investment. First off I can sue Dell since I have a computer from them and it was really easy to get and they gave me no warnings on how easy it was to use a computer to commit fraud. Then I can sue Microsoft for making an operating system that allows for easy copy right infringement. Their "copy" and "paste" methods have cost trillions and trillions of lost sales and IP revenue. Then I am going to sue my ISP for giving me internet access. Finally I am going to sue the government for inventing ARPA Net which evolved into the IP stealing networks we have today. There are pleanty of others on this list but I think this is a good start. All I need is a couple hundred million dollars to start the lawsuits but the return on this inventsment is quite substantial.

Re:List of those to sue so fars: what about Sony? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530968)

These days, Sony (re)introduces the MiniDisc. The MiniDisc can play "illegal" MP3-files, just like the iPod (although MP3-files must be converted to Sony's ATRAC format). If the iPod might be "illegal" according to the proposed law, then the MiniDisc must be illegal as well. Sony has known for years that the MiniDisc could store and play "pirated" music, that's why they made it impossible to use them as MP3-players. And that's why RIAA, Sony Music and other record companies tried to fight the original MP3-players such as the Rio. Sony should know about "illegal copying", after all they introduced the Betamax - a device that some people thought would ruin the movie industry.

Don't forget... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9531007)

... Al Gore. :-)

Their tactics aren't ineffective (4, Insightful)

bobhagopian (681765) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530709)

Lord knows I don't agree at all with the RIAA/MPAA, and it certainly hasn't stopped me (or probably most other /. readers from "sampling" music "before I buy").

But, their tactics have worked reasonably well, at least as a low-pass filter. I'd say that the lower 80% (in terms of resourcefulness) have significantly reduced or altogether ceased downloading music and videos online. Everyone is afraid at some level of the RIAA, and the effect has been noticeable. Whether or not the RIAA's campaign has been cost-effective is another matter, but that's not to say that it hasn't worked.

/. 2-step! (1)

Sarojin (446404) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530744)

Scenario 1A: Copyright holder uses police to go after copyright infringers.

Slashdot Response: "Why do the police have to do the **AA's dirtywork! This is blah blah blah corporate shills blah blah blah."

Scenario 1B: Copyright holder privately goes after copyright infringers.

Slashdot response: "Can you believe the nerve of these people. This is what the police are for! blah blah blah nazi stormtroopers blah blah blah."

Scenario 2A: New, obviously-designed-primarily-for-warez-pr0n-and-mp 3z-technology emerges.

Slashdot Response: "Technology is blameless! Go after the infringers, but leave technology alone!"

Scenario 2B: Infringers gone after.

Slashdot Response: "Can you believe the nerve of those people shaking down college students!"

Scenario 3A: Copyright is used to protect somebody else's intellectual property

Slashdot Response: Copyright has outlived its usefulness! Viva la revolucion!

Scenario 3B: the GPL is violated.

Slashdot Response: Hang em high!

Read the fake suit ... then write your Senator (4, Informative)

Random BedHead Ed (602081) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530763)

This lawsuit is creepy, but extremely plausible. After reading so much Grooklaw recently I felt like I was reading a real lawsuit. Time to write our senators this weekend. Find your senators here:

And the EFF's action item on this, complete with a sample letter, is here [eff.org] .

We should all make a habit of this - I personally don't write these people often enough.

RIAA Members would be first victims of this law! (2, Interesting)

GuyverDH (232921) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530773)

Lawsuit brought against audio / video equipment manufacturers and the studios that bought them that allowed the music / movies to be recorded in the first place. Then the equipment manufacturers and companies that used them that created the CDs, cassettes, DVDs, and VHS tapes of the movies that allow people to see them and possibly record them. Then we go onto the chain stores who purchase the equipment to play them and the media that contains the information that can be copied. all of this before we ever hit the first end-user law-suit.

But what about slashdot?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530789)

Could this legislation possibly make posting dupes illegal and finally put a stop to them?

Hatch's fault (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530799)

It's all Orrin Hatch's fault, that guy must have RIAA/MPAA agents camped out in his lobby 24/7. Perhaps Utah will wise up and replace the dude.

Sign with me everyone (1)

PhilippeT (697931) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530803)

It's the end of the world and you know it

O no now im gonna get sued

How many laws (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530820)

are they making on these matters ?

Its getting too much for many to keep track of.
Are there any chance of these laws beeing implemented ?

Its almost so frequent im thinking "hey let them implement this crap and let THEM find out in a few years this is worst for them (as long as it doesnt come here)"

And by them i mean in the USA

Morons, this is the law you wanted!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530829)

In essence, any business who makes a product that forces the users to infringe is now illegal. Business must create products that allow legal and fair use of IP. You guys got what you wanted. Bravo.

It's a fine day when Atlas Shrugged finally comes to life.

Fight back, why don't you (2, Informative)

chatooya (718043) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530832)

Downhill Battle [downhillbattle.org] is the group that's best leading the fight to stop the RIAA and the major record labels. Check out the summer concert flyering campaign.

Use 'anonymous filesharing' programs like (1)

DRWHOISME (696739) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530837)

Don't use Kazaa.
Use one of the below.

ES5

Filetopia

Freenet(slow)

http://www.ovmj.org/GNUnet/

http://mute-net.sourceforge.net/

Re:Use 'anonymous filesharing' programs like (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9531057)

Thanks, thief. Your momma must be so proud!

If it passes, write this letter... (5, Funny)

k4_pacific (736911) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530866)

Dear Senator Hatch,

In order to comply with the Inducing Infringement of Copyrights Act of 2004, I am turning in my now illegal devices which can be used to infringe copyrights to you so that they can be properly disposed of.

Sincerely,

[Your name]

Now, round up a bunch of broken VCRs and old 486 PCs (think thrift stores), and send them, along with your letter to:

Senator Orrin Hatch
104 HART SENATE OFFICE BUILDING
WASHINGTON DC 20510

0.001% (2, Interesting)

artlu (265391) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530875)

Does anyone know the cumulative total of all the RIAA lawsuits? These are just being instantiated in order to scare the general populus into thinking they get sued. Sure, go download music as much as you want but if you share it you get sued. It is definitely a one way street.

What I don't understand is that I can have an archive of music on a network and someone can "break in" and steal that music from me and then I can get sued by the RIAA. Where is the logic in that!

Aj

GroupShares Inc. [groupshares.com] - A Free and Interactive Stock Market Community

P2P bits (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9530882)

I can't be the *only* one to read the headline and imagine something not dissimilar to the TCP/IP "evil" bit?

Welcome to the Dark Ages. (2, Insightful)

BrookHarty (9119) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530888)

That's a scary bill, I don't think it will pass, its too vague.

But, I'm getting tired of hearing how some elected fuck nut bought and paid for by special interests are introducing a bill to fuck over Americans.

Key word, ELECTED OFFICAL.

How can I hope for the best for America, when they want to re-elected people like this over and over. When questioning our presidents actions is Un-American? When watching a movie like Fahrenheit 9/11 can make your blood boil, and still people don't do anything.

Seems like the Dark Ages.

Re:Welcome to the Dark Ages. (2, Insightful)

Kphrak (230261) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531108)

When watching a movie like Fahrenheit 9/11 can make your blood boil, and still people don't do anything.

Umm...offtopic, but I still feel constrained to reply: Fahrenheit 9/11 is a "mockumentary". It is not real life. It is a carefully collected montage of video clips designed to preach to the choir. The people who listen to Michael Moore and Al Franken and take them seriously are no different than the people who listen to Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter; they're listening to what they want to hear.

There are a lot of good people to listen to on both sides of the fence, and you can usually find them because 1. They don't resort to childish insults and ad hominem attacks, and 2. They acknowledge the other side's viewpoint and might even agree with some points. Watching Fahrenheit 9/11 might get a chuckle out of some, but your blood isn't going to boil.

And actually, the fact that we have people whose blood will boil over an extremely biased presentation of exactly what they want to hear is the reason why we get such crummy elected officials. People thinking, "Well, he's basically the same as Bush...but...he's not Bush! He says so all the time! I'll vote for him!" or "He's crazy and he spends most of his time fellating the record industry...but at least he's a Republican! I'll vote for him!" will hurt us even worse in the years to come than they are already doing now.

Funny timing (5, Interesting)

I8TheWorm (645702) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530889)

I just got off the phone in a lengthy conversation with a friend who is a widely recorded songwriter. You can imagine the arguement between a programmer and a songwriter regarding the issue or piracy. He brought up some interesting points (and I like to think I did too)...

  • Songwriters feel the RIAA is going about it all wrong. The RIAA is funded by labels, so of course that's the drum they'll beat the strongest. The NSIA [nashvillesongwriters.com] believes the RIAA's PR is attricious, and will (already does) hurt the performing industry. Nobody cares that record labels with a bad business model (read, spend too much money on production and marketing per cd) are either not making as much money or losing some. The NSIA (and others) have and continue to pressure the RIAA to change it's tactics.
  • Songwriters are in a different situation than programmers. I can charge whatever I like for my time or my programs. Songwriters are beholden to federal law (in the US) regarding what they can charge which is $0.085 per song per album cut, and $0.015 per song per radio play. Songwriters cannot charge a salary and forego any rights to what they write legally.
  • Songwriters love the idea of iTunes and other paid services. Part of reason is their pay per download is likely to go up from their pay per cut. The only downside is the copyright law has to be amended (again) to allow this, and until that happens, iTunes etc.. will have to put the artist money in escrow.
  • The media hasn't been any help in that corporations going after the little guy are front page news (ala the McDonald's coffee burn woman), while details that emerge later (also ala the McDonald's coffee burn woman) make small print in the back pages. The little girl that was sued by the RIAA got seven messages from them telling her to stop sharing files.


  • The RIAA is just another group funded by large corporations to pursue their interests, rather than the interests of individuals, and I could care less if they disappeared tomorrow. I know this, though: Sharing songs with no revenue going to the people that created them is financially harmful to the songwriters. Music isn't something that a person can't live without, and listening to radio is free.

    Here's something else I know. If labels like RCA didn't spend $250,000 recording a CD (that could be done for easily 1/10 that cost) they'd have less to cry about in the profit news.

lawsuits (1)

firstadopter.com (745257) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530909)

the lawsuits are such a joke, they don't impede anyone. and they just make 12 yr olds suffer.

Re:lawsuits (1)

I8TheWorm (645702) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530931)

Actually, those lawsuits fund more lawsuits, which in turn fund PAC money, which get laws changed in the favor or the RIAA and major labels. Then come more lawsuits....

Suing Makers of MP3 Players (4, Informative)

CHaN_316 (696929) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530971)

EFF has shown how broad the Act is by writing a mock lawsuit [PDF] suing Apple (for making the iPod)

Ummm...that's not too far from reality. The RIAA tried to sue Rio for making MP3 players in the late 90's. I refer you to this wired article [wired.com] .

Media complicity in legislative corruption. (4, Insightful)

bgeer (543504) | more than 9 years ago | (#9530973)

I was reading this and I got to thinking...

"Senator Orrin Hatch today introduced a bill that supporters say would prevent software companies from profiting from Internet piracy. But opponents say it would outlaw legitimate technology, possibly even VCRs. Orinn Hatch's campaign received contributions from the bill's industry supporters in his last election."

Sounded like a Headline News blurb until the last sentence huh? Just imagine if news outlets were required to report on Politicians' conflicts of interest when they were mentioned in connection with legislation that would benefit their backers. Just imagine how much effect that little disclaimer would have on the mind of people listening to the story. We could do a better job of controlling campaign influence than McCain-Feingold does without limiting free speech at all. Whores like Hatch and Boxer would be exposed on a regular basis. IANAL though, so what do you guys think?

What does it take to file a lawsuit? (1)

Fizzlewhiff (256410) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531034)

Can I file a lawsuit on someone's behalf? For example, if I am on a bus and someone is humming or whistling a tune, can I sue that person on behalf of the RIAA for violating copyright by doing an illegal public performance of a copywrighted work? It seems to me that the more lawsuits and more attention the RIAA gets will undermine all their attempts to where a politician would rather be supported by Hammas than the RIAA.

List of Outlawed Technologies (4, Funny)

Apocalypse111 (597674) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531038)

Assuming that this passes, here is a partial list of technologies that will shortly be outlawed, as they could be used to violate IP laws...

Portable MP3 Players (iPod, Rio, etc)
Tape Decks
Record Players
DVD Players
Camcorders
VCR's
Computers
Cell Phones
Voice Mail
Cameras
Typewriters
Pencils
Pens
Paint Brushes
Chalk

This list subject to change at will without notice.

Which Constituants? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9531051)

Exactly which of his constituants is Senator Hatch representing by introducing this bill? The Osmunds?

INDUCE Act wording includes two tests... (4, Insightful)

Kurt Gray (935) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531056)

The way I read the text of the INDUCE Act that offending "activity" would have to clearly be intended for infringement and "...including whether the activity relies on infringement for its commercial viability" so this is not describing any software or device that facilitates piracy but rather software or devices that clearly have a purpose of nothing other than piracy *and* the creators of said tool are using it as a revenue source. So I'm not sure how this would apply to cases where a kid writes a crack tool and releases it for free... since there's no revenue, no commercial viability, does this not apply?

Sure, blame Canada Again.... (3, Interesting)

axis-techno-geek (70545) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531072)

Just because home copying is legal in Canada, ie. you borrow my disc and make a copy that is legal under the Canadian Copyright Act. Making a copy and giving it to somebody is illegal.

We are all presumed guilty anyway, as we are charged a tax on blank CD's for money to go to the "poor starving" artists. SOCAN has collected the money, but last I had heard none (or very little) had ever made it to the artists as it was mainly used to pay for the administration of collecting the fee.

Wrong example lawsuit (1)

Todd Knarr (15451) | more than 9 years ago | (#9531089)

The EFF picked the wrong subject for their pseudo-lawsuit to illustrate the idiocy of the law. A better choice would have been a lawsuit against Sony (Beta) and JVC and Panasonic (VHS) over their introduction of the VCR. Joe Sixpack probably doesn't know the iPod from Adam's off ox, but he knows what he records the football game on and how inconvenient it'd be if he couldn't.

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