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US Entertainment Industry To Congress: Make It Legal For Us To Deploy Rootkits 443

Posted by samzenpus
from the for-your-protection dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The hilariously named 'Commission on the Theft of American Intellectual Property' has finally released its report, an 84-page tome that's pretty bonkers. But there's a bit that stands out as particularly crazy: a proposal to legalize the use of malware in order to punish people believed to be copying illegally. The report proposes that software would be loaded on computers that would somehow figure out if you were a pirate, and if you were, it would lock your computer up and take all your files hostage until you call the police and confess your crime. This is the mechanism that crooks use when they deploy ransomware."
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US Entertainment Industry To Congress: Make It Legal For Us To Deploy Rootkits

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:10AM (#43831775)

    These guys are the biggest thieves of the lot.

    • by Esteanil (710082) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:38AM (#43831903) Homepage Journal

      They also want to allow private companies to make "aggressive actions" in retaliation against "foreign cyber spies".

      Like, there's no way THAT could possibly escalate or cause the end of the internet as we know it...

      Link [nytimes.com]

      • "Foreign cyber spies" sounds like a phrase my grandfather who knows nothing about computers would use.

        • by BrokenHalo (565198) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:16AM (#43832049)
          No more ridiculous than the first line of TFS:

          The hilariously named 'Commission on the Theft of American Intellectual Property' ...

          ...Presumably hilarious by way of the inclusion of the words "American" and "Intellectual" consecutively.

          Sigh...

          • by nabsltd (1313397) on Monday May 27, 2013 @01:21PM (#43833567)

            Presumably hilarious by way of the inclusion of the words "American" and "Intellectual" consecutively.

            No, it's hilarious because you'd think that people writing opinions about what should or should not become law would understand that "theft" isn't possible with intellectual property.

            Intellectual property can be copied (possibly in a way that violates one or more laws), but it cannot be stolen.

            • It can be stolen. (Score:3, Insightful)

              by Anonymous Coward

              For example, if you take every copy of a work and lock it away, then it's been stolen.
              If you claim copyright or patent control over a work without valid justification, then it's been stolen.
              If you take from the public domain then copyright it so you alone now own it, it's been stolen.

              In all three cases, the right of others who have the right to copy have had that right removed at least semi-permanently (if you get your stolen iPhone back, it doesn't mean it wasn't theft).

              What ISN'T theft is making your own

            • by styrotech (136124)

              Intellectual property can be copied (possibly in a way that violates one or more laws), but it cannot be stolen.

              I'm not so sure. I can't help wondering if it is possible that trademark or patent registrations could somehow be hijacked like dns domain registrations have been.

              Or if (a probably very naive) someone could get unintentionally cheated out of the copyrights on their work. I'd imagine some dodgy record companies have already done/tried that.

              Those kind of things would fit my non legalistic pulled out

            • by fafalone (633739)
              What are you talking about? Of course it can be stolen. If I put a gun to your head, and say "Sign over the rights to your IP in perpetuity or else!" and you comply, I have stolen your IP. Obviously not what we're talking about, but technicalities used to matter around here goddammit, and IP can be stolen.
        • by lexsird (1208192) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:23AM (#43832105)

          Just think, your grandfather will also be voting too. He'll be sure to vote for those who support fighting these evil pirate scum and their foreign comrades.

           

    • by landofcleve (1959610) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:28AM (#43832135)
      Of course, it stands to reason that if they are looking to make this practice legal, they are probably already engaged in it.
      • by NFN_NLN (633283) on Monday May 27, 2013 @11:34AM (#43832901)

        I hope they make this legal and I hope they have tons of false positives.
        I also hope I have enough popcorn... :)

        • by wwphx (225607)
          Personally, I want to see it deploy, then malfunction and toast some of the computers of the execs and their kids and their parents. THEN you might see a change of opinion. Not unlike that music exec who found out that his kids regularly swapped MP3s with their friends.

          Myself, I'm not too concerned. First, pretty much all of the music that I buy was made years ago, Zia's and Bookman's in Phoenix and Tucson are great places for such acquisitions. Second, I use a Mac. While not immune to malware, it's
          • by DadLeopard (1290796) on Monday May 27, 2013 @04:44PM (#43834891)
            Since i use Linux and most Government computers are locked into Windows, I think it is a better bet that it will lockup some part of an important agency before it gets me! If they does this to their usual level of competency then there will be a whole lot of Falls Positives, hopefully some of them will be in the offices of some really good Lawyers who will sue them till their wallets bleed!
      • by Jane Q. Public (1010737) on Monday May 27, 2013 @12:38PM (#43833339)

        "Of course, it stands to reason that if they are looking to make this practice legal, they are probably already engaged in it."

        I should also be pointed out -- just in case any readers didn't realize it already -- that this "Commission" is not part of government or any official body that I know of.

        The very fact that they put "theft" in the name of the Commission is telling. Copyright and patent violations are NOT "theft". They involve a completely different area of the law.

  • What's really surprising is that torrents aren't infected up the wazoo with malware anyway.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:28AM (#43831841)

      Do you remember when Sony sneaked rootkits on their CD's and USB-memories and got away with a slap on the wrist.
      It won't happen again, the wristslapping that is.

      • by PopeRatzo (965947)

        Do you remember when Sony sneaked rootkits on their CD's and USB-memories and got away with a slap on the wrist.
        It won't happen again, the wristslapping that is.

        Right. Next time, their stock price will go up and the CEO's will get a bonus.

        Those poor corporate elite won't have to bear the excruciating and embarrassing agony of a "wristslapping". They have very tender wrists, you know. Limp, in fact, which is why they need government's protection of their massive profits.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by KiloByte (825081)

      If you want to be safe from malware, use torrents. It's "legal" downloads that are riddled with crap. Starting with the Java installer for Windows being bundled with Ask Toolbar malware, through big sites pushing repackaged open source stuff wrapped up in a rogue installer, up to most commercial games installing rootkits like SecuROM or Steam. And don't even start with "only light DRM" or by twisting the definition of rootkit to exclude Steam: it needs root, holds it, uses it against you, so it's a rootk

      • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:42AM (#43832207)
        Steam is not a rootkit, no matter how much you dislike it.
      • by staalmannen (1705340) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:47AM (#43832231)
        Does steam need root? I needed root to install it (like any piece of software) on Arch linux, but it runs at low privileges. Also if you run the windows version under Wine it is completely unprivileged and only active in your assigned WINEPREFIX.
      • by MysteriousPreacher (702266) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:54AM (#43832289) Journal

        Steam has root access? That's news to me. I run as a non-admin user, and have never seen elevated privileges outside of Steam client updates. Games are stored in ~/Library so there's no higher access needed for installing and updating games. I don't see any kexts or system level daemons.

        What makes you suspect Steam is doing what you claim?

        • The ~/Library comment makes me think you're running Steam on a Mac, which is fine, but not the majority of users and obviously not the OS the GP was talking about.
          On Windows check out SteamService.exe (aka the Steam Client Service), it should be in your services list.

          Most Steam users also have Steam installations that are older than the ability (before late 2012) to install games to different directories (excluding using symlinks/junction points/whatever) so games are installed into the default steam direct
    • by Bing Tsher E (943915) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:22AM (#43832089) Journal

      That is the value of having a torrent community. You go to a place like TPB and read the comments before downloading a torrent. People have a way of looking after each other when they are part of a community.

    • by Joce640k (829181) on Monday May 27, 2013 @11:25AM (#43832829) Homepage

      What's really surprising is that torrents aren't infected up the wazoo with malware anyway.

      Why would they? Pirates are far more worried about reputation and repeat customers than the RIAA appear to be.

      • by fisted (2295862)
        This isn't "Funny", but simply true. Reputation is what it's all about since you don't earn money for releasing pirated stuff. Just teh fame. RIAA is able to choose between consumer satisfaction and $$$, and their choice is pretty obvious.
    • by amiga3D (567632) on Monday May 27, 2013 @11:47AM (#43832973)

      Think about it, the only way to avoid malware will be to pirate everything.

    • What's really surprising is that torrents aren't infected up the wazoo with malware anyway.

      Huh? It doesn't surprise me at all, that Bram Cohen didn't think to make torrent files executable (or that no one I've heard of, ever extended them to make executing part of them become a requirement). If it were possible for torrents to be infected, they never would have become popular (because they would have been a fundamentally too stupid of an idea) and we'd be talking about some other scheme which fills the sa

    • I've come across malware in pirate games before, but it's very difficult to get malware to work in a media file - there are player-specific exploits, but that depends on the downloader having an outdated version of the correct player.

  • Seriously.. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wei2912 (2923897) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:15AM (#43831785)
    Maybe they should have a taste of how rootkits feel like.
    • Re:Seriously.. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by citizenr (871508) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:45AM (#43831937) Homepage

      umm they did, Sony got rooted. All it did was give them more ammunition.

      Maybe it would of worked if hackers targeted individuals within corporation. Leak personal details of everyone above VP inside Sony for example? Schedules, bank records, credit ratings, private photos no one was supposed to see, this kind of stuff.

  • LOL (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Bobakitoo (1814374) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:15AM (#43831787)

    I always been saying that the entertainment industry was the real pirate as what they were doing was closer to sailing the seas to sinking ship, steal booty and murder crewman then simply sharing data over the Internet. Now anyone not seeing it that way has no excuse.

  • Well yes... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sociocapitalist (2471722) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:17AM (#43831801)

    "This is the mechanism that crooks use when they deploy ransomware."

    Enough said.

    • Re:Well yes... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Technician (215283) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:29AM (#43831845)

      This will train the younger generation to harden their computers against future attacks. No Script, PDF Adobe Acrobat, IE, and other easy targets may finaly get secured as the avenue of attack is examined by security pro's.

      • This will train the younger generation to harden their computers against future attacks. No Script, PDF Adobe Acrobat, IE, and other easy targets may finaly get secured as the avenue of attack is examined by security pro's.

        Maybe...but as likely if these scumbags got rootkits made legal it would only be a matter of time before there would be additional legislation building such functionality into commercial OSs (ie Windows Vista), mainboard firmware and so on.

  • Exports? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:17AM (#43831803)

    Let's say this does get legalised, somehow. Have fun trying to export any infected products to the rest of the world!

    And for everybody else trying to sell entertainment products made in the US, all the people who make sensible data with no rootkits in it, have fun trying to convince the rest of the world to trust you! People will just see "Made in the US" and read it as "This will destroy your computer" regardless of whether there's malware present or not.

    • Re:Exports? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:36AM (#43831889)

      Let's say this does get legalised, somehow. Have fun trying to export any infected products to the rest of the world!

      Do you live somewhere in the rest of the world?

      Have you heard the expression "To 'harmonize' the laws".

      That is how this will become legal where you live.

      • by gl4ss (559668)

        Let's say this does get legalised, somehow. Have fun trying to export any infected products to the rest of the world!

        Do you live somewhere in the rest of the world?

        Have you heard the expression "To 'harmonize' the laws".

        That is how this will become legal where you live.

        This would push things over the limit. No companies or government branches outside of USA(or even in USA!) would stand for this. they would all just move to open source if they had to..

        • Re:Exports? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by BrokenHalo (565198) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:26AM (#43832125)

          This would push things over the limit. No companies or government branches outside of USA(or even in USA!) would stand for this.

          How much do you want to bet?

          Our illustrious Federal Government of Australia (before or after the election, it'll make no difference) will just roll over and say "ooh, that's nice, tickle me just there, that's the spot..."

          That's what Free Trade Agreements are for. Just a formal way of saying "I'm your bitch".

  • Greyzone (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:18AM (#43831807)

    So, if I do something that is legal but Sony thinks should be illegal then the laws are changed.
    If Sony does something that is illegal but they think should be legal then the laws are also changed.

    Seems reasonable.

    Also, never let a product with the Sony-logo into your home. You never know what approach they will use to contaminate your computer.

    • Sony has lost a lot of business from me - I had sony computers, TVs, DVDs, etc before the rootkit fiasco. Now I will not purchase from them - probably cost them >$10K in sales to me personally. The problem is that they have no way to know that they are losing customers, so they have no motivation to change their behavior.

      • Re:Greyzone (Score:5, Interesting)

        by AthanasiusKircher (1333179) on Monday May 27, 2013 @04:54PM (#43834977)

        The problem is that they have no way to know that they are losing customers, so they have no motivation to change their behavior.

        Well, first, if they lose enough customers, they actually will notice.

        But even if they don't, it's not like you're helpless here. You can actually contact them through a number of different channels and say, "I just want to let you know that I used to be a major customer, but I will no longer buy from you because of X." If a company starts receiving hundreds or thousands of messages like that about some issue, there is at least a chance that they might think about their behavior. Of course, they may just think that they're big enough and the new policy is important enough that they won't.

        But if you appreciated the quality of their products before, the least you could do as a former loyal customer is tell them what they did wrong. Then they can choose whether to act (or not) on that behavior.

        I've even on occasion done this in person. Did your favorite restaurant make a policy change that makes it less economical for you to eat there, or one that significantly affects the quality to you? Well, you can either just not go there again, and the owner gets to wonder about what happened... or you can give them some feedback and say, "This is important to me, and I'm letting you know that you won't see me much anymore if this is the new policy." Just be polite, and they can do what they want with that information. At a minimum, if you're polite, and the owner knows you're a regular customer, you might get a couple free meals or something... or they might get defensive, and you just politely say, "Well, I thought I'd let you know" and leave quietly.

        A lot of people seem to be taught that "if you don't have anything good to say, don't say anything at all." In general, that might be the polite way to go. But when you're dealing with someone's business as a regular customer, and then you suddenly decide to leave, it's actually more polite and potentially useful to give them feedback about why.

  • Sad Sad Sad (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:19AM (#43831809)

    It deeply saddens me that people continue to support companies that pull this kind of crap.

    I'm sure that Sony/Microsoft et al would change their tune of their products weren't selling. But, when their selling millions of crippled or bugged titles, my lone voice is crushed by the cacophonous accusations of paranoia.

    • by ibib (464750)

      It deeply saddens me that people continue to support companies that pull this kind of crap.

      I'm sure that Sony/Microsoft et al would change their tune of their products weren't selling. But, when their selling millions of crippled or bugged titles, my lone voice is crushed by the cacophonous accusations of paranoia.

      The problem is that if we stop buying them, they will claim it was due to piracy or whatever and have the legislators make up new rules forcing us to purchase their products.

      • by yoshi_mon (172895)

        Ah the we can't do anything to lets do nothing apathy that they are counting on.

        First of all shareholder reports are real. Sure they can try to spin the numbers to say that low sales were do to X, Y, or Z which have just enough basis in fact to not be an outright lie. But most shareholders know better as they have also taken the marketing classes which leads to the real problem...

        Marketing/Risk Management and how propaganda is the order of the day every day. And how now the media, which was supposed to h

    • Re:Sad Sad Sad (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Culture20 (968837) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:51AM (#43831963)
      What's really sad is your voice of reason sounds like paranoia to ordinary people. No one outside of tech circles remembers the rootkit fiasco.
    • Crooks (Score:5, Informative)

      by ZombieBraintrust (1685608) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:07AM (#43832025)

      Director Richard Ellings, Deputy Director Roy Kamphausen, Casey Bruner, John Graham, Creigh Agnew, Meredith Miller, Clara Gillispie, Sonia Luthra, Amanda Keverkamp, Deborah Cooper, Karolos Karnikis, Joshua Ziemkowski, and Jonathan Walton.

      I wish news articles put faces these types of outrages. The above people are the commission.

  • RIAA tried this (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:20AM (#43831813)

    The RIAA tried to get an amendment added to the Patriot Act in 2001 that would do the very same thing. This is domestic terrorism on different level, but terrorism just the same.

    • The RIAA tried to get an amendment added to the Patriot Act in 2001 that would do the very same thing. This is domestic terrorism on different level, but terrorism just the same.

      The RIAA and Patriot Act are domestic terrorism.

  • by Extremus (1043274) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:21AM (#43831815)

    I would accept that if politicians and big companies also install some sort of "corruption-detection rootkit" in their computers.

  • Wait... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by eulernet (1132389) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:24AM (#43831825)

    In fact, this proposal will probably be refused.

    But this is a strategy:

    1) propose a tough law
    2) wait for its refusal
    3) propose a "lighter" one

    Since the lighter one will appear innocuous and since the first one has been refused, the second will be accepted.
    And you can bet that they wanted to propose the "light" one first, but it would have been probably refused if submitted first.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:28AM (#43831839)

    With the dreadful formulaic schlock that Hollywood puts out, it's fair to say that they've already incorporated an anti-theft device, called "bad writing".

  • it would lock your computer up and take all your files hostage until you call the police and confess your crime

    Or until you use repair tools to remove the rootkit. Once they figure out people can do that, then they'll ask to make it illegal to remove their rootkits.

    • Intereting idea! (Score:2, Interesting)

      by EzInKy (115248)

      So how about a system that requires registration to make it illegal to remove the rootkit? They could even make that registration database searchable so that people can decide for themselves whether or not they wish to form a contract by agreeing to the installation of a rootkit. Perhaps it could be called the "National Copyrighted Works Database" or something like that? A searchable database of things you can't copy would be good for creators as it would indicate their intent on not having their works copi

  • fuck this shit (Score:5, Insightful)

    by shentino (1139071) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:32AM (#43831855)

    I do not trust a rent seeking organization of any sort to not "make mistakes" on calling people pirates.

    They're trying to be judge, jury, executioner, AND witness.

    These people sue grandmas and dead people to get settlements. I wouldn't trust them not to frame someone that happens to have a fat bank account.

    And even if they were simply incompetent, I still wouldn't trust them to actually care about making mistakes.

  • Teh Terrorists (Score:5, Insightful)

    by DarkOx (621550) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:34AM (#43831875) Journal

    Use the fear.

    Obviously allowing media companies to deploy root kits will increase the number of vulnerable machines on our nations part of the internet. Assuming this some how only finds its way on to home PC it still leaves many machines more vulnerable to attack by additional malware which might make them botnet members which could be used in DDOS attacks against critical business sectors like Finance and Healthcare.

    Clearly the desire to do this shows the media companies behind it are irresponsible citizens endangering our national security at best actively aiding and abetting our enemies and terror organizations at worst. These are unAmerican activities and the industry participants need to be call out on it.

  • by kasperd (592156) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:34AM (#43831877) Homepage Journal
    Now is the time to think about how the entertainment industry can be hit back with their own law. How about legally deploying rootkits on their computers to grab copies of their newest products before they are released.
  • Wow ... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by gstoddart (321705) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:48AM (#43831953) Homepage

    So they basically want the right to maliciously hack and damage other people's computers on their belief that someone is stealing from them.

    No court, no proof, just what they believe. So they want to be judge, jury, and executioner.

    OK Anonymous, there's your targets. Each one of the people who contributed to this report are now fair game. Since they've decided it should be their right to hack us, they're now perfect valid targets. Their families, bank accounts, and mistresses are good starting points.

    What a bunch of douchebags. These guys would have us undercut all of computer security to give them special access to enforce their claims without oversight, and in the process, they'd probably make most computers far less secure.

    If these guys want the right to commit what would be crimes for anyone else, then I suggest they don't deserve a whole lot of consideration.

    This is shameful, and I really hope the lawmakers tell them a big "no friggin' way".

    • Re:Wow ... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by bill_mcgonigle (4333) * on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:48AM (#43832249) Homepage Journal

      This is shameful, and I really hope the lawmakers tell them a big "no friggin' way".

      The lawmakers will tell them, "wow, this will be tough to get through. And I'm very busy with my reelection campaign and fundraising right, now - it's very hard to do fundraising in this economy. If only I didn't need to spend so much time fundraising I might be able to work on this."

  • This is Feudalism (Score:5, Interesting)

    by davydagger (2566757) on Monday May 27, 2013 @08:53AM (#43831973)
    The last stripes of a so called "free market" are being washed away into corporte feudalism, where the corporations now take over law enforcement, and soon after, law creation and destruction.

    Denying citizens all due proccess of a Jury of their peers, set up by a democraticly elected republican government is an assault on everything we stand for as a nation. This moves beyond the scary police state, dirrecty into feudalism. No longer do corporations control us with soft power, but they not have the right to directly interfere in our lives in place of the government, without the shred of due process the former has afforded us. This even gives them more power than the NSA/FBI, who to date have yet to request or start putting root kits on people's hard drives.

    It should go without saying that the RIAA will likely use this based on past actions to:

    1. Falsely labeling people as pirates, due to apathy. Don't give a damn who's really a pirate or not.

    2. Falsely label random people as pirates due to malice.

    3. Black Hat activities against critics. They could plant evidence of serious crimes(kiddie porn, bomb making materials, terrorist manefestos, etc..) on the hard drives of victims. They could also remotely wipe hard disks, spy, and delete or manipulate selective files, making it harder for people to mount a defense against their

    4. Set people up. I.e. open connections to whatever machine they want and do whatever activity they want. They want someone to say something terrorist related they can now.

      and locking there machines, wiping their hard drives, deleting files related to criticism, giving them virrii, planting evidence, setting them up for criminal activity, etc....

    Just went you thought SOPA and PIPA cannot be worse.

    I think we need to propose our own laws permanently banning the practice across the board, and stiff penalties for everyone who would try. The laws need to have the CEOs, and corporate officers go to jail. The law also needs to make whoever wrote that, go to fucking jail.

    By go to jail I mean

    1. Pre-dawn raid where they shoot they're pets, smash their houses, and intimidate their family
    2. Denied bail, intimidated into making confessions with ridiculous sentences.
    3. Freeze their bank accounts so they can't pay for lawyers.
    4. at least 15 years in federal prison in general population.
  • I would seem that the only reliable means of distributing these rootkits, etc., would be to lace existing softeware accordinfy and release onto pirate sites. Am I missing something or doesn't this risk exposing and therefore crippling a whole load of supposedly legitimate corporations who have been shown to use pirated versions of software?

  • the response the first time a major corporation's computers become the "victim" of a legal root kit.
  • by Lundse (1036754) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:04AM (#43832013)

    In the end, socalled IP can only be enforced in this manner: Control over the machines used by the buyers, ie. the potential buyers, ie. the rabble. Only when we no longer control our machines, can you "sell" access - you need a gateway to extract money! Since the "you need the LP/CD/DVD"-model has died, the only possible gate is access and control over the machine.

    So, the Free Software movement asks again: Who should own and control the machines we all use for work, entertainment, living?

  • Will it ever end? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by sqrt(2) (786011) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:05AM (#43832015) Journal

    Are we still having this conversation in 2013? You lost. It's over. Our society at large accepts and supports file sharing for non-commercial use. You can't put that toothpaste back in the tube, you can't roll back the cultural clock. You will not stop filesharing. Figure out a way to make money in this new economy or die quietly. Something as non-essential and ephemeral as the entertainment "industry" doesn't deserve a minute of face time with our government. There are important matters to be dealt with, going after filesharers doesn't even register on the importance-scale.

    Is anyone really entertaining the delusions of these detached, clueless, dinosaurs? Meanwhile, our infrastructure is literally collapsing, and they want us to waste government time having a discussion about imaginary property. Grow up. Your racket is over, you had decades of a free ride, longer than you deserved, to see this coming and do something about it. You sat on your hands, so now knuckle under and let that sweet creative destruction wash over your entire industry.

    • by gstoddart (321705) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:17AM (#43832057) Homepage

      Are we still having this conversation in 2013? You lost. It's over. Our society at large accepts and supports file sharing for non-commercial use.

      But, sadly, the lawmakers will still do what they've been paid to do by these lobbyists, and the US has increasingly set themselves up to pin their future on copyright and all other forms of IP. They simply can't afford to do anything different now.

      So I fear they're going to keep pushing from their end as hard as they can. Eventually, I'm pretty sure they're going to want every general purpose computer to be built in such a way that they have control over it.

      Is anyone really entertaining the delusions of these detached, clueless, dinosaurs?

      Yes, the lawmakers who keep passing the laws they ask for.

    • Re:Will it ever end? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Registered Coward v2 (447531) on Monday May 27, 2013 @11:49AM (#43832997)

      Are we still having this conversation in 2013? You lost. It's over. Our society at large accepts and supports file sharing for non-commercial use. You can't put that toothpaste back in the tube, you can't roll back the cultural clock. You will not stop filesharing. Figure out a way to make money in this new economy or die quietly.

      They have. It's called "THE CLOUD;" with the end goal of ending physical distribution of entertainment and software. Once they do that, file sharing will be much more difficult to the point where it becomes an insignificant problem. For that to happen, high speed access needs to be more prevalent, and the content owners need to find a way to either share revenue with the bandwidth providers or develop their own delivery infrastructure, such as Google is doing. Until then, they will fight rear guard actions such as this in an attempt to stay in business long enough to make the transition. Oddly enough, copyright extensions will be in some ways less important because once you control the storage media to the point where, even if a copyright expires, if others cannot obtain re-distributable copies then the original holder can continue to control the work. Of course, for every advance in protection someone else will look to ways to circumvent it.

  • We've seen similar approaches in the past where some company installs a root kit into their product. Sony did this with some music CD once and there have been other instances. The problem arises when the hacking community discovers the rootkit (and they always do) and they make use of the rootkit for their own purposes and it turns into a gateway for malware getting onto the person's computer. Again, this is not conjecture, this has already happened.
    Additionally, this would lead the way to false positives w

  • I mean really most people do not buy CD's anymore or use PC's to listen to music, Rootkits are no longer an issue for the vast majority of multimedia content users. No need to get your knickers in a twist.

  • by bdwoolman (561635) on Monday May 27, 2013 @09:18AM (#43832065) Homepage

    Many large corporations, including the entertainment industry, are using -- or are looking at using -- proactive strategies as part of their security playbook. There was an interesting report on NPR [npr.org] concerning this a few months back. Currently, deploying malware is, to all intents and purposes, simply illegal. As it should be. These guys want a self-defense avenue for deploying destructive or surveillance programs against their perceived enemies. IMHO our corrupt congress will -- sooner or later -- be bribed into letting them have their way.

    YOYO. You're On Your Own.

  • I wonder if they will eventually ask to be allowed to just take the money directly from citizens' accounts. Their ultimate goal is to control the entire development and consumption of all things culture.
  • Let 'em Do It. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by VortexCortex (1117377) <VortexCortex@NOs ... t-retrograde.com> on Monday May 27, 2013 @10:40AM (#43832563) Homepage

    This would just backfire so fiercely that it would turn the Entertainment Industry inside out. Publishers are not needed. They add no value to the work. The bits are in infinite supply, thus no value. What's valuable is the ability to create new works. We now have the ability to pay the artists directly for their new works -- They can simply withhold their efforts until money is assured -- Like Mechanics, Home Builders, Burger Joints, 100% crowd funded projects, etc.

    With a burger, home or car, there is one customer purchasing the work -- The work benefits one customer. With arts the customers are all mankind. Marvel of Marvels: The bits are infinitely reproducible! Is this a match made in heaven? No, it is the nature of information. Humans are information duplication devices, right down to their very DNA. All Life Is.

    The current publishing model runs counter to the Nature of the Universe, and employs evil economically untenable practices such as Artificial Scarcity, and Data Sharing Restrictions. To force the people into a system counter to human nature is what it means to create a police state. This has always backfired. The sooner, the better.

  • by WOOFYGOOFY (1334993) on Monday May 27, 2013 @11:02AM (#43832689)

    Please. Go ahead. Get Congress to authorize you to deploy rootkits. While you're at it, better make sure Congress also holds you immune from any damages done to the user's computer by either you or a third party who exploits your rootkit on the user's machine. I really want you to do this. I really sincerely hope this legislation goes through.

    Because that will be the end of you. That will bring to an end the era of Big Entertainment .as people take special pains and use soon-to-be-written FOSS software to ensure that no part, fragment, snippet or bit ...nothing, NO-THING of what you produce ever has any contact whatsoever with any machine they own.

    One way to kill your enemy is to give them everything they want. This works especially well when the enemy is the coke snorting sociopathic lawyers and executives in an industry who would corrupt every last vestige of civil society and even democracy and free speech itself in order that they can go on making money in just the way they've set themselves up to make money.

    So please, go ahead .. make my day. (footnote 1)

    Footnote 1-t

    The phrase "Make my day" is copyrighted by Warners Brothers and is used here without permission despite the fact that Woofy Goofy was fully cognizant of the copyright and also the need to seek legal permission before using the phrase "Make my day" and further, it was Woofy Goofy 's intent to, with malice of forethought , defraud and and deprive Warners Brothers of its legal right to compensation for the usage of its copyrighted material and this defrauding was not intended by WoofyGoofy as a political act or protest but rather and only to secure financial gain for WoofyGoofy, regardless of the amount of such gain or whether such gain could reasonably be inferred to have materialized through any means, and for no other reason whatsoever.

  • by WaffleMonster (969671) on Monday May 27, 2013 @12:37PM (#43833331)

    I have more faith in the power of voters and the desire and the whole "state monoploy on violence" meme to ever see this get anywhere near the light of day. If they want to go down that road with open hostilities...theres more of us than them...just sayin...

    The whole undercurrent of protection = retaliation being peddled in TFA is equally nonsensical. Nothing is as it seems on the Internet..most source addresses are either total garbage or unwitting victims. Without human level AI any automated retaliation can and will be leveraged as a weapon by the very people you seek to defend against.

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