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06/18/2004 Archived Entry: "Good vs. Evil"
Posted by CKL @ 02:34 PM PST

Evil:
Antipiracy bill targets technology

"A forthcoming bill in the U.S. Senate ... called the Induce Act, says 'whoever intentionally induces any violation' of copyright law would be legally liable for those violations, a prohibition that would effectively ban file-swapping networks like Kazaa and Morpheus. In the draft bill seen by CNET News.com, inducement is defined as 'aids, abets, induces, counsels, or procures'... Foes of the Induce Act said that it would effectively overturn the Supreme Court's 1984 decision in the Sony Corp. v. Universal City Studios case, often referred to as the 'Betamax' lawsuit. In that 5-4 opinion, the majority said VCRs were legal to sell because they were 'capable of substantial noninfringing uses.'"

Good:
Cory Doctorow's Microsoft Research DRM talk

"This is the worst of all the ideas embodied by DRM: that people who make record-players should be able to spec whose records you can listen to, and that people who make records should have a veto over the design of record-players.

"We've never had this principle: in fact, we've always had just the reverse. Think about all the things that can be plugged into a parallel or serial interface, which were never envisioned by their inventors. Our strong economy and rapid innovation are byproducts of the ability of anyone to make anything that plugs into anything else: from the Flo-bee electric razor that snaps onto the end of your vacuum-hose to the octopus spilling out of your car's dashboard lighter socket, standard interfaces that anyone can build for are what makes billionaires out of nerds.

"The courts affirm this again and again. It used to be illegal to plug anything that didn't come from AT&T into your phone-jack. They claimed that this was for the safety of the network, but really it was about propping up this little penny-ante racket that AT&T had in charging you a rental fee for your phone until you'd paid for it a thousand times over.

"DRM is the software equivalent of these closed hardware interfaces... It's a bad business."

Stop the madness! Get more info at EFF.

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Posted by @ 00/00/ 00:00 PST

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