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Peer-to-peer hacking bill officially introduced in House

Time for another rant... Hope no one minds... If so, you can simply not read.

Here we have more proof of who's running the show... Still ostensibly your elected representatives, but representatives now beholden to corporate interests. It's worth noting that corporations are fictional, but legal, entities with all the rights of a person, more or less. Only problem is that now these big, fake, rich people are able to stomp all over the real people, the little people, or, in other words, us.

This time, to combat music piracy (though there has yet to be much conclusive evidence that file-sharing on peer-to-peer networks has had any major impact on the record industry -- some studies show the exact opposite), the corporate interests that pull the strings are asking for the right to break laws with immunity by launching denial of service attacks against those involved in file-sharing via peer-to-peer networks.

No doubt they hope to slide this through without anyone noticing the implications of such legislation. Not only would it be a frightening precedent to allow corporate interests to break laws you and I are expected to abide by, but this proposal would have effects reaching much farther even than those sharing the files.

Consider this possibility... You've got a nice cable modem 'net connection. A few people in your neighborhood are sharing songs through KaZaa... Even if only one of them is sharing anything protected by copyright (some artists give permission to share their work, in case you didn't know), this proposed bill would give the copyright holder, some big company in California or New York, the right to launch a denial of service attack against the evil file sharer. Unfortunately, as they flood the one sharing the illegal file, your ISP is also flooded, the legal file-sharing is made impossible, and you can't even check your email all of a sudden because of the denial of service attack, though perhaps you've never had one of the peer-to-peer file sharing clients even installed.

And dunno about you, but though I've copied many tapes/CDs, the vast majority of those things I've copied have led directly to purchases. But perhaps I should go burn a few hundred of the CDs on which I've spent far too much money... After I make backup copies, of course.

The continuing erosion of freedom to attempt to catch or dissuade a handful of law breakers is simply unacceptable.

Though this case doesn't specifically involve the press, per se, think on this quote for a few... and think about what side you would have been on when the red coats were on their way.

"I worry about my child and the Internet all the time, even though she's too young to have logged on yet. Here's what I worry about. I worry that 10 or 15 years from now, she will come to me and say 'Daddy, where were you when they took freedom of the press away from the Internet?'"
--Mike Godwin, Electronic Frontier Foundation (www.eff.org)

Please forward freely to other thinking individuals. I don't believe in copyright. See my 'official license' here.

And one last quote from Jello Biafra:

"Real freedom scares you 'cause it means responsibility."

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