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File Sharing Remains a Perk of College Life 288

Posted by kdawson
from the ain't-nobody's-business-if-i-do dept.
An anonymous reader points out a story on the effect of a new law on file sharing on campuses — in short, it may not make much difference. "Students who are about to graduate often hand down the tricks of stealing music and movies to the next senior class. ... At the College of New Jersey, that means surreptitiously finding a new home each year for a computer holding an enormous directory of illegal files on the campus. ... The machine runs software called Direct Connect, which lets people on a local network easily trade files among their hard drives in a way that is usually undetectable to anyone outside the network. ... Educause recently unveiled a website with information about the new regulations. It provides case studies from six 'role-model campuses,' listing the steps they are taking to combat piracy. Another page lists 57 legal sources of music and movies on the Web. But when asked which campuses have forged new policies in reaction to the law, Educause officials were unable to name any."
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File Sharing Remains a Perk of College Life

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  • not going to work (Score:5, Insightful)

    by stonewallred (1465497) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @01:50PM (#31888902)
    You are never going to stop folks from trading files. All you can do is try and make it difficult. And that brings its own problems because it usually causes the stuff not to work well and attracts people who like challenges to break your "protection". I believe the model of charging less would work better.
    • You are never going to stop folks from trading files.

      Exactly music is a service and should be treated as such, that's why I like to say I purchase tickets not albums.

      • by CRCulver (715279) <crculver@christopherculver.com> on Sunday April 18, 2010 @02:04PM (#31889010) Homepage

        Exactly music is a service and should be treated as such, that's why I like to say I purchase tickets not albums.

        And what about when the music cannot be taken around on tour? Not all music is performed by small bands that can go from venue to venue. There are for electronic works for tape created at places like IRCAM. Sometimes concerts are so costly to put on that ticket prices are unlikely to cover the expenses -- I've gone to hear music at concert halls where it's hard to believe that ticket sales even paid for the huge amount of people hired for the venue's coat check, let alone the orchestra.

        Some amount of public subsidy and patronage is already present to support music that either can't be put on in concert, or isn't profitable to put on in concert. As it becomes increasingly less realistic for artists to expect payment for every copy made of their work, it's worth supporting public subsidy and patronage models at the same time as calling for people to buy tickets to see their favourite rock bands in concert.

      • that's why I like to say I purchase tickets not albums

        I like to listen to audiobooks, some of which are 20 or more hours long and are read by a single skilled actor who 'plays' all the differnt voices of the different characters. Do I purchase tickets to a 20 hour performance?

    • by jellomizer (103300) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @01:57PM (#31888966)

      You don't need 100% success to have a victory. Sure people will still do it, but if you don't make it easy for them to do it less people will go ahead and do it any ways. If you make file sharing so hard that only the geeks can do it. Then that is enough to stop all the non-geeks.

      • by Rix (54095) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @02:06PM (#31889038)

        The Napster/Grokster lawsuits spawned BitTorrent. Killing suprnova caused a bloom of (better) torrent aggregator sites.

        Excessive use of antibiotics just gets you antibiotic resistant strains.

        • by DesScorp (410532)

          The Napster/Grokster lawsuits spawned BitTorrent. Killing suprnova caused a bloom of (better) torrent aggregator sites.

          Excessive use of antibiotics just gets you antibiotic resistant strains.

          Interesting that you compare piracy to disease. Freudian slip?

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          Excessive use of antibiotics just gets you antibiotic resistant strains.

          Sure, and if you have an incurable disease affecting one limb, as a last resort you amputate rather than allow the disease to endanger the entire system.

          If you think the pirate community is going to overcome the entire weight of the legal profession, the political players and the big money spinners through sheer force of arrogant denial, then I suspect some time in the next two or three years, you are going to learn a painful lesson. I'm only sorry that quite a few innocent people are going to be deeply inc

          • by russotto (537200) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @05:13PM (#31890470) Journal

            If you think the pirate community is going to overcome the entire weight of the legal profession, the political players and the big money spinners through sheer force of arrogant denial, then I suspect some time in the next two or three years, you are going to learn a painful lesson. I'm only sorry that quite a few innocent people are going to be deeply inconvenienced when the remaining healthy tissue in the limb is sacrificed to be sure the disease is contained.

            You think they'll sacrifice computers and the internet to save the music and movie industry? Sorry, there's a lot of them who would like to, but it's just not going to happen. And the legal profession will fight for any side; they're hired guns in this, not interested parties.

            • No, I think they will sacrifice the relatively free and open Internet we have today in favour of a system they control with compulsory censorship and/or supervision, combined with laws that allow for major punishment of those who commit minor infringements without the usual safeguards and due process.

              If you don't think this can happen because "the Internet interprets censorship as damage and routes around it", I would remind you that:

              • The biggest international copyright negotiations since the WIPO treaties
              • by tftp (111690) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @07:37PM (#31891406) Homepage

                I think they will sacrifice the relatively free and open Internet we have today

                In context of this article it won't do a thing. If you have thousands of students living together, they don't need Internet to trade songs. The horse - an exact digital copy - has left the barn long ago; MP3 codec and pocket-sized multi-gigabyte players just make it practical. There is a a huge mass of music out there - essentially everything is there - and if the government introduces artificial scarcity by clamping down on copying then students will make sure to copy and store *everything* they come across, even if they don't like the music - just because it may be harder to do in the future.

                Internet is important only for geeks who don't meet anyone, ever. But such geeks are probably sophisticated enough to get what they need - the government will be using a pretty rough net; they can monitor standard ports, but they can't look into SCP traffic or decode everything that is posted in a.b.*.encrypted, or try to figure out why foo.o is 4 MB long and the linker says it's corrupted, while foo.c is just "void foo() {}" ...

                Laws are being proposed to mandate spyware, which you can bet will also restrict the use of "dubious" alternative systems like Linux and OSS if they get passed

                All the spyware in the world is useless on a computer that is not on the network. With prices of computers going down fast, it is not unreasonable to see more and more people having two computers - one for Internet and one without a network card. The government would need to set up a Computer Police to bust doors and search premises (since a 1 TB portable drive fits in a shirt pocket.)

          • by way2trivial (601132) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @05:15PM (#31890494) Homepage Journal

            the entire legal system may bow down to one woman sitting on a bus.

            • My kingdom for mod points. That response is epic.

            • Sure, and indeed one of my favourite quotations of all time is Margaret Mead's:

              "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has."

              Unfortunately, Mead didn't specify a time frame, and while I'm pretty sure she was right in the long run, I don't think a few students ripping songs are quite in the same league as Rosa Parks.

    • College kids are learning something at school? Excellent! Oh, it's how to glom files while outsmarting "the man"? Hmm, well, not so excellent ... but it will come in handy when they're in the corporate world having to steal customers from competitors and steal ideas from their colleagues to get promotions.
    • by Skapare (16644) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @02:33PM (#31889258) Homepage

      ... causes the stuff not to work well and attracts people who like challenges to break your "protection"

      At least for many, breaking the "protection" is not the goal ... making stuff work well is. If the people making DRM were to come up with a way that provided the "protection" they (claim) to desire, while also working well on every platform, there wouldn't be as much interest in "breaking" it.

      As a user exclusively of FOSS platforms, I consider that every content provider that fails to make sure that my platforms are supported is a content provider that has no interest in revenues from me or other users of these platforms. As such, if WE somehow manage to access their content through means that don't involve any payment, I see no loss to the owner. They didn't have sufficient interest in our money to make an effort to get it. So it is by their own decision that they won't get revenue from us; now ours.

    • Lowering Prices is the solution.

      The market is there... they just cant afford the current prices.

      I wonder if anyone has done the math on this... but if you lowered the price of Photoshop to $50... would it create more profit than at its current price $669? (amazon)

      At $60, Modern Warfare 2 made around 1.3 Billion dollars, and they continue to sell new copies...

      I would imagine that the amount of people that use photoshop out number those who play Modern Warfare 2. Even the most of casual users who dont even ha

      • I wonder if anyone has done the math on this... but if you lowered the price of Photoshop to $50... would it create more profit than at its current price $669? (amazon)

        No. Common people don't need Photoshop. Most would still pirate it and spend the $50 elsewhere. Professionals who need it can afford it, usually (mostly companies). So there's no point in lowering Photoshop.

        • Common people all know of photoshop. It is what people refer to whenever an image is retouched. People know photoshop like people around the world know coca cola and levis.

          It is the tool... and it doesnt just apply to professionals. It applies to hobbiests, students etc. There are many people who work professionally with photoshop that got their start with pirated versions.

          I'm not asking if photoshop is for the common man or not. It is the standard that everyone knows about... but what i'm asking is if anyo

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by russotto (537200)

        I wonder if anyone has done the math on this... but if you lowered the price of Photoshop to $50... would it create more profit than at its current price $669?

        Adobe has already figured that one out. The relatively price-insensitive customers (professional design shops) they gouge out the wazoo, while they sell a much cheaper program (Elements) missing just a few features (which are key to the pros but not the dabblers) to gather in money from the masses. And they sell the full programs to students for a m

        • Right but those things, student versions etc...do not stop piracy.

          People still pirate photoshop obviously.

          Why?

          Price still is a factor obviously. People dont want elements, they want photoshop.

          I do think Adobe has probably figured out the math on this... but it doesnt mean that the results were bad. It may just be that they havent tried the "$50 photoshop" plan yet simply out of fear that it might not work... or perhaps such a change in price would take time to win people over with pirated copies.

          It maybe ju

    • Re:not going to work (Score:5, Interesting)

      by YourExperiment (1081089) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @03:53PM (#31889900)

      You are never going to stop folks from trading files.

      I don't know. You could always name and shame a particular college on the front page of Slashdot, citing the exact method that the students use to share files. That'd probably do enough to drop a few people in the shit.

    • You can bet that they're already charging what earns them maximum profit. Their campaign against piracy is a side project to try to secure those profits in the long term.

      The problem is that you really can't compete with piracy. For music and movies, it's not really possible to differentiate your product with the millions of digital copies (without packaging a whole lot of physical goods with the album/movie, and even then, it then becomes "overpriced stuff" with a disc thrown in). If you try to lower your p

  • In other news (Score:5, Insightful)

    by DMiax (915735) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @01:52PM (#31888914)
    Copyright infringement remains different from stealing. As in "we will stop stealing when you stop calling it stealing".
    • Re:In other news (Score:4, Informative)

      by 1336 (898588) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @02:21PM (#31889148) Homepage

      "Copying is not theft.
      Stealing a thing leaves one less left
      Copying it makes one thing more;
      that's what copying's for."

      Source: http://questioncopyright.org/minute_memes/copying_is_not_theft [questioncopyright.org]

  • by Rob Bos (3399) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @01:55PM (#31888952) Homepage

    If nothing else, there's always USB keys. Now pushing 128GB. My coworkers and I trade entire television shows pretty regularly.

    Who needs fileservers? Sneakernet is becoming more and more efficient.

    • USB drives?? Think bigger. A 1 TB external HD is far more effective if physical size and convenience of portability are less of a concern. I'm sure many co-workers and college dorm students already share files via external hard drives.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by shadowbearer (554144)

        Indeed. External drive enclosures with SSD's are getting down to the size of a small paperback book. Easily concealable, and even more easy to dump in a garbage can somewhere without losing much, if it becomes necessary.

        Maybe not as "convenient" for some people as broadband sharing is, but nearly un-prosecutable, given how common and how inexpensive drives of large capacity are becoming.

        Once again, technology is bypassing antiquated business models and the efforts of those who hold

    • by Skapare (16644)

      Bring your portable deskside tower with the three 2TB hard drives and the pair of gigabit ethernets to a gamer meet, sometime. Just be sure you are properly configured for IPv6 for the premium stuff.

  • by IICV (652597) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @01:59PM (#31888982)

    That's basically what we did when I went to college. Someone would host the DC++ server, and everyone else would connect to it and share files over it. You had to have 1 GB of shared files to join.

    ResNet didn't give a shit, and in fact for a couple of years the guy who hosted the server was about as high up in ResNet as a student can get. We were using a ton of bandwidth, but as long as it was on the internal on-campus network they didn't care. In fact, I heard that we were kind of wink-and-nudge supported by the actual network administrators - college students are going to pirate stuff anyway, so they'd far prefer we do it on the local network, and leave the gathering of new materials to guys who'll use a VPN to a dedicated usenet box.

    • by bigstrat2003 (1058574) * on Sunday April 18, 2010 @02:27PM (#31889192)

      At my school, we just used SMB shares. This article reminds me of the time we were discussing the possibility of building a machine to replace that of a graduating senior, just so the location of his massive Simpsons collection wouldn't change. I also remember very fondly when I heard in conversation that my machine was down over the weekend - from a person I had never met before, and who didn't know when he mentioned it that he was talking about my machine.. When your computer is known by people before you yourself are, that's an achievement. :)

      So really, all this article has accomplished is to fill my Sunday afternoon with waves of happy nostalgia. Was I supposed to be shocked and outraged?

      • by dangitman (862676)

        When your computer is known by people before you yourself are, that's an achievement.

        Most people would consider that an anti-achievement in social skills. That's nerds for you, I guess.

        • Not necessarily. Not having met someone can simply mean that the proper circumstances haven't occurred (you haven't had a mutual friend, or been brought together by circumstance otherwise).

          I guess you're correct that most people would see it that way, but then again, they're wrong.

        • by Phroggy (441)

          When your computer is known by people before you yourself are, that's an achievement.

          Most people would consider that an anti-achievement in social skills. That's nerds for you, I guess.

          Having a social life is totally different than achieving something. To create something, and have your creation become widely known and respected, without you saying "hey everybody, look at this thing I made!" is a good feeling - whether it's a painting or a novel or a piece of software or a social networking web site or a search engine or a college porn server.

      • by CAIMLAS (41445)

        Eh, back circa ~2000 there were the usual SMB shares used by most students. You'd find the occasional decent collection of software, porn, music, and movies this way.

        The entire campus (small private college) had a T1 to share, so people did use these shares liberally. Even then, things could get a little congested (I seem to recall that our dorm was on two 48-port 10BT hubs). I doubt it'd have been half as popular if we had bandwidth to spare with things like Pandora and Hulu.

        However, there was also the "OO

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Da Cheez (1069822)
      We have the same system with DC++ here, including support from ResNet, though the minimum share level is 5GB. Problem now is that since the system is tolerated by the admins, to cover their own skins (understandably) file sharing has been restricted to non-copyrighted files, with violators being permanently banned from DC++. As such it's hardly used anymore except for finding things like Linux distros without cutting into internet bandwidth allotment, and sneakernet's becoming more popular again.
    • by loufoque (1400831)

      It was much simpler at my school. We just used windows (samba) shares.
      And then there was a server that did some indexing and allowed to search for files.

    • It's what we did too (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      and I'm WAY too old for this, there was no internet to speak of when I was in college. We pirated music the old fashioned way, which analog cassette tapes. One guy would buy a new album (an "album" was like what we now call a compact disk, but it was about 1 foot in diameter and made of black plastic) and bring it back to the dorm, and pretty soon everyone who wanted it would have a second or third generation cassette dub (and yes, these were perfectly listenable). That was actually better than file shar

  • WTF does that mean? Sounds like college students are still as arrogant and clueless about life in the real world as when I was one 20+ years ago.

    There's no shortage of file sharing outside of college campus networks, life in the real world just doesn't spoon feed you.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by mindbrane (1548037)

      life in the real world just doesn't spoon feed you.

      where did you hear that? is it an age thing? at what age should i be looking for that to kick in? is there an opt out? man that doesn't sound good.

    • I think the point was that it is centralized and easy to access. You don't have to hit multiple torrent sites, hope enough seeders are on, worry about campus firewalls, log on to warez sites, or trade USB keys like mentioned above. . . you just sit down, connect to the server, and start browsing.
    • by Skapare (16644)

      There's also tons of sharing going on just before and after (and often during), gamer meets (which usually have 2 or 3 bands of wireless channels all clogged up in addition to multiple gigabit and sometimes 10 gigabit ad-hoc LANs).

  • by dcposch (1438157) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @02:30PM (#31889224)
    I'm a sophomore undergraduate at a relatively large university in California, and the volume of filesharing I see my classmates engage in is enormous.

    Most of the discussion about filesharing (here on Slashdot and elsewhere) seems to focus on P2P, but in my experience BitTorrent/Gnutella/P2P darknets are just the tip of the iceberg.

    The vast majority of the filesharing volume I see here is by sneakernet and private servers. The house I live in has a server with upwards of 3 TB of movies and music; all of our residents can log in.

    I've seen people merge their own several-GB collections with the collection on the server. Last year, I lived in a frosh dormitory; there was no server, but it was common for people to lend each other iPods or merge media collections on each other's laptops. That kind of sharing takes a few minutes to transfer a few GB--it's on an entirely different plane from the type of sharing the RIAA and MPAA focus on, transferring one song or one movie at a time over P2P.

    Incidentally, the media server setup I described is not unique to the house I live in--most of the houses and some of the dorms at my university have one; nor is it unique to colleges and universities--the startup I interned at two years ago had one, too.

    So when the RIAA/MPAA sues a single mom for her kid's Kazaa downloads, I see it as beating a dead horse. The real sharing is on the scale of GB and TB at a time, not individual songs. On the rare occasion when I do find something missing from the media libraries I have access to, I'll torrent it using PeerGuardian to block corporate IPs, so I'm unlikely to show up on any logs the RIAA keeps.

    By focusing their legal efforts on P2P users, I think that the media cartels may have drawn out the battle while losing the war. Yes, we're more reticent now to use BitTorrent. But we've merely moved to faster, more local, less traceable forms of sharing.
    • by plover (150551) * on Sunday April 18, 2010 @04:23PM (#31890138) Homepage Journal

      I have to ask: do you see filesharing to be kind of like pot-smoking, in that "some other people say it's wrong, but it isn't hurting anyone else, so who cares?" Do you believe it's wrong, but participate anyway? Or do you actually believe it's a right that's being wrongly suppressed?

      If it's either of the first of those, why do you think it is that nobody challenges the ethics of these private servers? Do you not have any peers whose moral code says "No, filesharing is wrong, you guys are ripping off my favorite band, I'm turning you in to the ethics board?" Are you're saying that really, out of the thousands of students your university, and of every other university situation you are aware of, that not a single student complains about the inappropriateness of it?

      I'm not trying to fish for snitches or get anyone in trouble with this question, but I'm just pretty much surprised that nobody complains. Not even the sons or daughters of (RI|MP)AA execs or artists, whose very education might be paid for by the media being copied?

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by dcposch (1438157)
        I think it's not a question of ethics, and here's why: you can't share a secret with a million people and expect them to keep it.

        The idea that you can "lend" something that consists purely of a stream of bits (such as a song or video) to someone, or sell it to them while preventing them from sharing it, is a myth. (Software is a bit different, because software is more than just bits; for example, MS does have partial success in getting people to pay for Windows by denying pirates the aspects of Windows t
        • by dangitman (862676)

          Information wants to be free.

          How can information want anything? It's not a sentient being. You also ignore all the information that's been forgotten, been buried, and kept secret over the centuries.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by plover (150551) *

          I think it's not a question of ethics, and here's why: you can't share a secret with a million people and expect them to keep it.

          The ease of doing a thing doesn't change the ethics of doing a thing. It's easy to drink and drive, too, but in doing so you place other people at risk. Ease doesn't make it ethical.

          The industry uses DRM to reduce the ease of copying. Breaking the DRM does not grant you the right to copy, only the ability. Whether the music is protected or not, copying it is still unethical.

          In the case of file sharing, you reduce revenue to the artist. Arguments about "I never would have bought it anyway" simply further

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by macshit (157376)

        I have to ask: do you see filesharing to be kind of like pot-smoking, in that "some other people say it's wrong, but it isn't hurting anyone else, so who cares?" Do you believe it's wrong, but participate anyway? Or do you actually believe it's a right that's being wrongly suppressed?

        If it's either of the first of those, why do you think it is that nobody challenges the ethics of these private servers? Do you not have any peers whose moral code says "No, filesharing is wrong, you guys are ripping off my favorite band, I'm turning you in to the ethics board?" Are you're saying that really, out of the thousands of students your university, and of every other university situation you are aware of, that not a single student complains about the inappropriateness of it?

        I'm not trying to fish for snitches or get anyone in trouble with this question, but I'm just pretty much surprised that nobody complains. Not even the sons or daughters of (RI|MP)AA execs or artists, whose very education might be paid for by the media being copied?

        I think that's pretty much reason that everybody around here seems so confident that the RIAA and their ilk are going to lose in the end -- for the vast majority of people, sharing of "trivial" stuff like music really isn't a bad thing; at most, it's just sort of "wink-wink-nudge-nudge wrong".

        Even the industry's attempts to demonize it (like happened with marijuana) are ineffective, because it's something that most people have already done themselves, so they know in their gut that it's a natural and heal

    • You're going to hear this a lot, but it's a horrible, horrible thing you're doing and you ought to be ashamed of yourself.

      Also, what do you like for de-duping?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 18, 2010 @02:42PM (#31889324)

    At my university (40k students), we have a DC network and the IT here are not just aware of it, but some of the IT guys are the same guys who maintain it. Our university is happy to look the other way because the sharing is virtually undetectable outside the network, and we have plenty of bandwidth in network to move gig files around in seconds while not compromising the connection to the outside world. The less we share outside the DC network, the less letters they get from the RIAA (which they already ignore for the most part).

      By the way, its articles like this that shed light on these networks, which we certainly don't need.

  • by Skapare (16644) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @02:42PM (#31889326) Homepage

    If we mark off those resources for legal downloading (in the "comprehensive list of alternatives" link at the Educause site) that still don't work with FOSS platforms, how many remain? I know at least Magnatune is among them.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by agrif (960591)

      Magnatune is a really under-appreciated source of good music. They have all of their music available free, online, as creative commons with a short audio blurb at the end. As such, they're totally cool with you using their music in a non-commercial CC work. Additionally, they have a monthly service for only about $15 where you can download as much music as you want in just about every format, including mp3, ogg, and lossless formats. The best part is they're not evil: half of everything goes directly to the

  • My school tried a variety of solutions in reaction to P2P file sharing: 1) bandwidth caps for most network traffic outside of the school's network 2) Provided a DRM-encumbered music service for students and 3) developed its own P2P software to share files for "legitimate", "academic" use. It didn't stop illegal file sharing entirely of course, and from what I hear the Resident Life tech support was pretty much complicit in piracy as well. Still, better than nothing.
    • by Urza9814 (883915)

      Yea, we have bandwidth caps at my uni too...but there's no shortage of ways around them. Because if I want to download one Linux ISO, I'm already over my weekly cap - and as the VP of the Linux Users Group, there have been times when I needed 3 or 4 DVD images within a span of a couple hours. But as I said, there's no shortage of ways around the caps. You can download from wireless, you can get on someone's connection in town (frats, apartments, businesses), you can connect through the campus proxy server,

  • by Tei (520358) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @03:11PM (#31889560) Journal

    Students don't have much money (much less than people with jobs), but still have the same needs, created by the industry and our dynamic culture. The only way for these people to fullfill these needs is to piracy. I don't condone piracy.. but I have to say that the other option is frustration.

    I don't theres any solution. But theres also no damage either: these people will not buy anyway. Once these people finish his studios and get a job, these same people will start buying things again, wen buying is easier.

    Let students warez his music, there are things more important for us.

    • by Skapare (16644)

      Tell the music industry to stop advertising to poor people! Here's an idea: let the music be free until students get their first job in their field after school. They it's time to pay the piper.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by plover (150551) *

      Students don't have much money (much less than people with jobs), but still have the same needs, created by the industry and our dynamic culture. The only way for these people to fullfill these needs is to piracy. I don't condone piracy.. but I have to say that the other option is frustration.

      I don't theres any solution. But theres also no damage either: these people will not buy anyway. Once these people finish his studios and get a job, these same people will start buying things again, wen buying is easier.

      Let students warez his music, there are things more important for us.

      You used the wrong word above when you said "needs". Music and movies are not needs. They are "wants". They are wants that are skillfully created by advertisers, marketers, producers, and talented artists and engineers, and they are presented as needs and sold as needs, but they are not. Any confusion you have between needs and wants is a lesson you really should learn now in order to survive in the modern world without going head-first into debt. People who don't learn this lesson soon think they need

      • by CRCulver (715279)
        That the arts are necessary to a life worth living is a principle that goes all the way back to the Greeks (and probably beyond). Sure, someone downloading a Lady Gaga track is probably fulfilling a mere want, but fine music, film and books are all things that are needs and can be had from internet sources.
      • Well, Mr. Karma: Pedantic, there's a class of needs you've probably not heard of then: "Social needs." If you go without movies, music, TV, whatever, you're segregating yourself out from a significant part of social culture. Without that common touchstone, you no longer have a point of commonality with other people in your culture, thus you are now less able to relate to and interact with other people. You may not be kicked out of school for not seeing Avatar, but you might be ostracised. And since you need

  • In more technologically advanced countries the latest generation of broadband is plenty good at home. Even my parents and my uncle are moving to fiber connections now with 10/10 Mbit as the lowest, which is plenty and on upload even faster than my cable line. The whole "limited bandwidth" is going to be some oddity of the past in a few decades because even a fairly notorious HD hog such as myself doesn't download 100 GB/day which is what a saturated 10 Mbit line will upload. For comparison, a complete binar

  • Honestly, how much of this is actually worth pirating, anyway?

    A defining moment of my life came in 1998, when I finally landed a coveted ISP job. (Go ahead, laugh, it was a big deal back then.) At last, I had local 100Mb access to a Usenet server with a full alt.binaries feed. A co-worker had spools upon spools of burned CDs of MP3s. I spent one ten-hour shift examining these CDs one by one. There was almost nothing that I actually cared to listen to. A notable exception was the soundtrack to Tron (

    • by CRCulver (715279)
      At least with filesharing technologies, the guy who is merely hoarding for the mere sake of it is still providing those files to others out there who have a real interest in it. On a P2P network I'm on, some people have accumulated music they never intend on listening to, but they keep it in their shares to help out those who are into it.
  • I'm old, but (Score:3, Interesting)

    by speedlaw (878924) on Sunday April 18, 2010 @04:06PM (#31890000) Homepage
    Back in the day, we'd hook up five or so cassette tape player in a row when someone got a fresh album, and make five tapes. We had lots of posters in the Student Union (we could even get beer there, that's how old I am) which said "home taping kills music". When CD's came out for twice the price of the vinyl, we saw how true that was. NOT. I've advised my kids to not upload, and share only with those they know in the real world. So far, I now have more music than I could listen to in a a normal lifespan, with no p2p or dodgy websites. Students hiding data from the RIAA (actually their terrified school ISP)-imagine that ! I have no fear for the new generation.
  • When I was in college back in 2000, a lot of my friends ended up getting work supplement jobs with 'Computing Services' on campus, doing the mundane desktop/printer/PC phone support to free up the campus sysadmin's time. Little did our close-nit group of friends find out the sysadmin's themselves had a huge storage server restricted by access-control lists that was loaded with mp3s, movies, dvdrips, ect. It was sort of a speak-easy to get access to it, but again, as the title states, when 'everyone' is in
  • Shock! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Spad (470073) <slashdot@spad.YEATSco.uk minus poet> on Sunday April 18, 2010 @04:34PM (#31890214) Homepage

    Students trying to get stuff for free? Never!

    I had a friend at uni who used to buy packaged foodstuffs and then send them back to the "If you're not completely satisfied" address with a fictional complaint. 9 times out of 10 he'd get a crate of said product by way of compensation; he survived for 3 years, barely paying for anything he ate or drank in this manner and you're amazed that people are swapping music without paying for it?

    If any single group of people can find a way to get things without paying for them, it's student. Intelligent, poor, lots of free time = win.

  • by stevo3232 (794498) on Monday April 19, 2010 @01:10AM (#31893168)

    I go to a university in Canada with about 25000 students. The exact same thing happens here, people who run resnet know DC++ exists and they look the other way. They actually moderately appreciate it because it means that fewer people are grabbing files from outside the network which a) means the RIAA is going to send them fewer legal threats and b) the university uses less bandwidth, since everything within resnet costs them nothing.

    Students will ALWAYS find ways to download files.

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