RIAA's BIG win

Discussion in 'Politics & Ethics of Technology' started by epicstruggle, Oct 5, 2007.

  1. Frank

    Frank Certified not a majority
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    Then again, most people simply don't know: they use that nice program to download stuff. Which in itself isn't even illegal in most places. That they at the same time are uploading stuff goes unnoticed to them. It's just what everyone else is doing as well.

    Are you really sure you're not inadvertedly giving access to anything? DO you use a router and firewall? Firefox or Opera? Are you locked down tight? Never posted something copyrighted anywhere? Do you have kids? (!!!)

    Because, you could face very stiff penalties otherwise. Do you have good healthcare and social security for the broke where you live?
     
  2. borowki

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    Then that means RIAA's initial actions were justified: P2P networks ought to be shut down, because their very existence lead to copyright infringements, even when their users have no such intention.
     
  3. AlphaWolf

    AlphaWolf Specious Misanthrope
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    so guns need to be outlawed because guns lead to murders... if you don't have a car you can't drink and drive so they should outlaw cars. Should we assume the intent is to violate the law? If so then perhaps the internet should be shut down as many laws are violated with the assistance of the internet.
     
  4. Frank

    Frank Certified not a majority
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    That's why we pay a stiff copyright-infraction tax on blank media over here: about 300% on blank DVDs. Because our government is sure they will be used for one thing only: copying copyrighted media.
     
  5. BRiT

    BRiT Verified (╯°□°)╯
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    They might as well shut down printing presses and photo-copiers too... Where do you draw the line?
     
  6. Nite_Hawk

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    Hi Borowki,

    The concept of statutory damages for copyright infringement s misguided. Because it is supposedly hard for the copyright holder to prove how many copies an infringer has made they just assigned a range of $750-$30,000 per work and let the copyright holder decide whether or not they want that or the actual damages, regardless of whether or not it makes sense for the given case.

    Imagine for instance that you commit some civil offense like bumping someone's car with a shopping cart in a parking lot. The car in question has a lot of scratches, and the owner thinks you may have caused more than one scratch, but can only prove one of them. Instead of only getting the damages for what they could prove you did, they are given the option of charging you a lump sum somewhere between 750 and 30,000 times what the actual provable damages to their car was. If you consider that the general per song cost is $1, that is the equivalent of what is happening in the file sharing case. This is why I find it totally unreasonable. The statutory damages far exceed what the likely infringement was. It's extremely unlikely that the defendant shared each of those songs over 9,000 times. The law as it is written is intended to stop large for-profit pirating operations where these knids of damages actually may make sense.

    Nite_Hawk
     
    #66 Nite_Hawk, Oct 8, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 8, 2007
  7. Mize

    Mize 3dfx Fan
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    IMHO the RIAA missed the boat on the next market for media and looks to be intent on never moving that way.

    Let's say 5 years ago they'd come up with a DRM system that allowed unlimited-but-low-quality (96 kpbs) sharing of music? Friend wants to hear that groovin' new track - IR or BT it to their player or copy it via memory card, whatever. They listen to the scratchy version (a la casette tape copies so many of us grew up with) and finally decide to spring the 0.99 for the 192 kbps version.

    But no, better to sniff packets and sue people than modify an outdated business model. In the end the P2P community will probably come up with a proxy system that leaves the RIAA in nowheresville and they still won't have a business model for the digital age.

    Shame.
     
  8. StefanS

    StefanS meandering Velosoph
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    According to the daily telegraph, EMI might be changing course.

     
  9. tongue_of_colicab

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    And if im actually already paying extra on blank DVD's because apparently i'll use it to write copyrighted media on I dont actually have to buy cd/movie/whatever anymore because I already payed that tax anyway :)
     
  10. borowki

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    You know as well as I that there is no practical or legal way to determine how many copies of a file is downloaded. To do so would require constant surveillance of internet traffic between private parties. And even if we can, the number of downloads from a particular computer is not proportional to the potential damage, since on a P2P network, those downloading will in turn redistribute the files. Ten copies will quickly beome a hundred copies then ten thousand. Basically if you make a popular song available once, it will become available to anyone who wants it forever.
     
  11. Mize

    Mize 3dfx Fan
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  12. Sxotty

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  13. digitalwanderer

    digitalwanderer Dangerously Mirthful
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    It is, it's just not everyone seems to have realized it yet and it ain't a good one. :???:
     
  14. Nite_Hawk

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    In a world where information can be transferred freely it is indeed hard if not impossible to prove how many times some information has been copied. Personally though, I would rather see sentencing error on the side caution rather than assumed guilt. Even if you support the idea of statutory damages for copyright infringement, they are currently incredibly broken as they don't take into account the value of the work. When a work is only worth $1, it would need to be copied at least 750 times before even the minimum sentence for willful infringement is justified. The current laws are based around the concept of an infringer making lots of copies of a limited number of works, not of an infringer making limited copies of many works which is what usually happens on p2p networks.

    As for secondary or tertiary infringement, the original infringer has no control over what the receiver does with the data. That person could just as easily have bought the song off itunes and stuck it in their upload folder.


    Nite_Hawk
     
  15. Frank

    Frank Certified not a majority
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    Any law you cannot enforce and would bankrupt the majority is simply totally borked. Imagine if anyone with the money to spare could extort any amount they want from any random slice of the population...

    It breaks both capitalism and democracy.
     
  16. 3dilettante

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    It can be enforced, at least when it is used against large commercial piracy operations.

    The application of the statute to this level of offense is the reason why it seems so outlandish.
     
  17. borowki

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    It's not caution that you want. It's an interpretation of copyright laws such that they're toothless when applied to music sharing. If record companies have to hunt down every single P2P user and sue him/her for a dollar a song, they basically have no means to stop infringements.

    Your claim of statutory damages being reserved for large-scale piracy makes little sense, since the actual damages would almost certainly exceed $30,000.
     
  18. Davros

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    you know if i want i song i might as well walk into the store whack the assistant over the head and take it - i'll get a lower sentance if caught
     
  19. Nite_Hawk

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    Those damages can increase up to $300,000 per work if the infringement is willful. Besides, this law was written in 1976 and drafted in 1978. Who do you think they intended to target with this law? The idea of hundreds of thousands of people swapping thousands of songs via personal computers over the internet hadn't remotely occurred to them. It wasn't until the late 70s and early 80s before recordable cassettes had even become popular.

    The law is broken as it stands. It was never designed to cope with the problems that P2P networks introduce, and we need a sane way to move forward that doesn't involve fining someone $222,000 for sharing less than two CDs worth of music over the internet.

    Nite_Hawk
     
  20. epicstruggle

    epicstruggle Passenger on Serenity
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    Is she going to prison? Nope, Id say that a few decades/life in prison out weights 200k.
     
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