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United States CDA Media Music News

EFF's Letter to the Senate on INDUCE 189

z0ink writes "Picked up off of EFFector today a letter to all US Senators on the topic of IICA (Inducing Infringement of Copyrights Act of 2004 -- formerly the INDUCE Act). 'In February, EFF proposed an industry-led collective licensing solution that would ensure compensation for copyright owners while minimizing the need for governmental intrusion into the digital music marketplace,' writes EFF Executive Director Shari Steele in the letter. 'It's time for a solution to the P2P conflict that pays artists, not lawyers.' IICA has been covered here on Slashdot with more information available here."
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EFF's Letter to the Senate on INDUCE

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  • by 0123456 ( 636235 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:10AM (#9842307)
    "It's time for a solution to the P2P conflict that pays artists, not lawyers"

    Of course most copyrights are owned by publishers, not artists...
    • One big problem (Score:3, Insightful)

      by millahtime ( 710421 )
      One big problem is that Washington is made up of a lot of lawyers. Like they will allow the money to flow away from them.

      Not sure which is more greedy...the record labels or the lawyers. They both want all the money and are not worried about the artist.
      • Oh please. Washington is made up of politicians who will not see one red cent if another million bucks drains into the legal industry.
      • From the letter, Shari Steele, Executive Director: "EFF {snip} does not condone the widespread copyright infringement going on over the Internet."

        From the dictionary: "condone -- To overlook, forgive, or disregard (an offense) without protest or censure."

        From the EFF site: File Sharing: It's Music to our Ears [] and The MP3 Caper [], etc.

        The EFF has long staked out a pro-P2P position, and has gladly accepted lots of membership dollars on account of it. At least when it comes to P2P, they entirely lack logic

      • True, but the people have one advantage that those in Washington worry about: votes. When people start informing themselves about issues (all the issues, not just abortion, or just copyrights, but every single one!) and make informend choices, instead of voting for whoever has the most memorable adds, or who looks best on TV things will change. Start with yourself, make sure you vote, and vote based on what they will do (and in case of those with a history anywhere, what they have done). Or if you can't

    • by EvilCabbage ( 589836 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:21AM (#9842369) Homepage
      A P2P system designed with a more direct artist > consumer flow in mind could alleviate that problem too.

      Then of course it'll be blamed for putting a whole shitload of fat guys in suits out of work, they'll buy some more laws to put a stop to it, etc...etc...etc...

      Damn, I have become cynical lately.
      • by sotonboy ( 753502 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:27AM (#9842404)
        I dont think putting fat guys in suits out of work is a bad thing. And if you do create the more direct flow of cash to the artist then the fat guys wont have the money to buy the laws. Once it starts it may well snowball.
        • ...."Why do they call him Snowball?"

          Some days I can't help myself, sorry.
        • by Rhesus Piece ( 764852 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @10:21AM (#9843434)
          I'm not expert, but my understanding of the music industry leads me to believe that the "fat guys in suits" do serve a genuine purpose.
          They may get paid too much for what they do, but they do stuff.

          Artists cannot go national on their own; they somebody to invest in studio time, radio distribution, etc.
          From what I've seen, most artists in this day and age just go where they are told and say what they are told by their Handlers.

          In short, you don't become big without luck or a very talented promotional team.
          I, for one, would prefer the artists get to concentrate on performing and writing.
          • by dgatwood ( 11270 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @01:59PM (#9846047) Homepage Journal
            Ah, but the main reasons that artists can't go national on their own is that A. they are being artificially repressed by payola (or something resembling it), B. the recording industry's marketing machine is a juggernaut, an 800 lb. gorilla, if you will, and the individual artist is forced to compete with that, and C. most of the major media venues are owned by the same parent companies as major recording companies, so there is no incentive for them to provide alternate mechanisms for non-major-label artists.

            Let's break this down one point at a time.

            Studio time: I think there are at least three recording studios in people's homes in my neighborhood. Most of them are highly computer-based, costing a tiny fraction of what a major label studio would cost to build, but still providing similar quality. That's not saying that finding a good engineer isn't important, but a good engineer costs a tiny fraction of what it costs to rent a studio, which in turn is a tiny fraction of how much many record company-owned studios screw you for if you are signed with their label....

            Radio distribution: this one is easy. It's not like books where the cost of publication is huge and you have to be hyper-selective. You just need a handful of companies that take submissions and distribute them to radio stations. Your band would sign a waiver of liability to protect the company if you ripped off somebody else's music, and then your music would go in a slush pool. There are already a few companies that do this, though they mostly target Muzak-type markets rather than radio stations.

            Anyway, with such a mechanism, radio stations who wanted to be indie-friendly could then simply grab a random 24 songs (one an hour) from the slush pool and play them, then report upstream on whether people called in and said "that song rocks" or "that song sucks". The slush pool songs would have someone reading a URL at the end telling where you could find that artist on the distributor's website ("to hear more by this artist, search for 'My Sucky Little Band' at". Music that got a good response could be weighted higher than music that got a bad response, and thus would naturally get more airplay. The weighting could be segregated by target audience, by region, by genre, whatever.

            Most artists who "just go where they are told and say what they are told by their Handlers" end up making cookie cutter music that appeals to teenagers for three weeks, then dies out. And you're right that those sorts of disposable pop stars could never make it on their own. That doesn't mean that there aren't artists who could.

            • Some good points.

              An important factor is that the market size is pretty much constant - x people each listening to y hours of music with z amount of attention each day.

              Given the excess of supply if one performer wins then another performer must lose. With a smaller number of mass market performers more will lose. By having a larger number of more indie performers (less marketing in other words) there'll be more winners, though they may not win as big. That's a healthier, more vibrant market.



          • "..somebody to invest in studio time, radio distribution, etc.

            What's often forgotten is the artists already pay for this in the form of 'advances' from the record companies against future earnings. Record companies lose if future earnings don't materialize, but that's a risk management issue undertaken by banks, relatives and bookies every day and I see no reason for federal legislation to support RIAA member's poor performance in this respect.

      • putting a whole shitload of fat guys in suits out of work

        It's for their own good. They'll lose weight that way.
      • Artists want to make decisions about their work. One such decision MIGHT be to sell their rights to another agent.

        Grousing that some artists decide to do just that leads to a suggestion that perhaps they shouldn't be allowed to do so?

    • by goldspider ( 445116 ) <> on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:28AM (#9842936) Homepage
      That's called treating the symptom, not the problem.

      The problem is that entertainers (I refuse to call most of them "artists") are still signing contracts with the RIAA.

      Any solution to the "P2P conflict" will have to center around getting entertainers to stop signing with the RIAA. Once that happens, the RIAA has absolutely no power over the entertainer and the means they choose to distribute their music.

      • Any solution to the "P2P conflict" will have to center around getting entertainers to stop signing with the RIAA. Once that happens, the RIAA has absolutely no power over the entertainer and the means they choose to distribute their music.

        There is also the problem that the majority of music is purchased by people with little musical knowledge: Teenagers

        Their primary exposer to music is mainstream radio, thus without knowing that anything better exists, they are happy to eat up the tripe the RIAA serves
    • Absolutely wrong (Score:4, Informative)

      by CrystalFalcon ( 233559 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @12:16PM (#9844660) Homepage
      Copyrights are always owned by the artists. By law. By definition.

      The are the creator of the work, and therefore automatically assigned the copyright, which cannot be given away.

      (The RIAA once tried to change this by changing the law to allow "work for hire"-type music contracts, which would make the studios the copyright holders. Thankfully, it didn't pass.)

      What you are thinking of is the DISTRIBUTION RIGHTS to specific copyrights. Such distribution rights are typically owned by publishers, by form of a contract with the copyright holder, the artist.

      And it is exactly these distribution rights that, with the advent of the Internet and P2P, suddenly don't add nearly as much value to the music as they used to do, yet the products (albums) are still being charged for as much as they were in the old days.

      Something's gotta give.
  • Lawyers (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Rosco P. Coltrane ( 209368 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:16AM (#9842337)
    It's time for a solution to the P2P conflict that pays artists, not lawyers

    It's time for a solution to any problem that never involves lawyers.

    Lawyers are a kind of leech that is created by the government itself: the law that governs what citizens are or aren't allowed to do (that means all of us) has become so complicated that we, the citizens, have to hire 3rd parties who are versed in its intricacies, to "interface" with the judicial system. This certainly isn't new, and it's the same thing in all countries in the world, but it never fails to infuriate me.

    Make the law simpler, and (1) the leeching caste of the lawyers will not be required each and every time you have to talk to a judge, and (2) since people won't necessarily lose money on attorney fees, frivolous lawsuits designed to impoverish the defendants, or threaten to do so like the RIAA's strong-arm technique of wrestling 3 grands out of 13 year old teens, will disappear.
    • Re:Lawyers (Score:3, Funny)

      by meringuoid ( 568297 )
      It's time for a solution to any problem that never involves lawyers.

      I tell you what: the first thing we do, let's read Henry VI part II, act iv, scene ii.

      Good advice from 410 years ago.

    • Re:Lawyers (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Someone on Slashdot actually spelled 'lose' correctly!
    • Remember that laws can never give you any rights, they can only take them away. That is, they never govern what a citizen can do, only what they can't do.
  • by Mr. Neutron ( 3115 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:19AM (#9842358) Homepage Journal
    But it's like talking to a brick wall. They see this as a "protecting against theft" issue, and no amount of oration will change their minds. The concepts of freedom to invent and create without worrying about being liable for any and every violation that might produce is lost on them. The concept of fair use, and reasonable limits to copyright are lost on them.

    I give up.
    • How about sending them all a letter containing a list of all the children's stories and scientific literature that is public domain?

      Here's some examples of public domain fiction:

      Brother's Grimm stories (itemize them)
      Peter Pan
      Gulliver's Travels
      (And other collections of children's stories.)
    • by Anonymous Coward
      I wrote Feinstein and this is what she wrote me back. Looks like I know who to vote against next time she's up for reelection (I don't think she's up this time)....

      Her repsonse:
      Thank you for writing to me about music file-sharing. I
      appreciate your thoughts on this important topic and welcome the opportunity to respond.

      I have always believed that the protection of intellectual
      property rights is vital to a flourishing economy -- particularly in
      California. As new technologies, such as P2P fil
  • Give 'em a chance (Score:5, Interesting)

    by seaniqua ( 796818 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:23AM (#9842378)
    I hate lawyers as much as the next guy, but this is a good thing.

    The current online music business model sucks a big fat one. If improvements were made (better availabiliy of new and non-pop artists, choise of file size including lossless, etc.) and the fee were changed to a per-month system, I think enough people would switch over and make it work. I would gladly pay $10 a month for unlimited downloads of lossless material (the EFF says $5, which is derived from the statistic that the average american spends $60 a year on CDs, I would recommend a higher amount, though, because I expect that people would download more music in this system than they would buy in a store).
    • by hyphz ( 179185 ) * on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:32AM (#9842436)
      But it was a stupid letter.

      The big music companies can't be forced to block-license their output. They do it for radio stations because it's in their interest to have their songs played in a context where a) large numbers of people can hear them, and b) if their song isn't playing, someone else's would be.

      Neither of these applies to individual downloads. The fact you're listening to their song doesn't mean that large numbers of people will hear it. And, if you want to hear a particular song and find it isn't available for online download, it isn't particularly likely that you'll run off and buy another song which IS available for online download. (Unless you're an EFF protestor, but that's too small a group.) And if you say "if it isn't available for legal download I'll pirate it" then they'll call for the handcuffs brigade. It's ridiculous to suggest that the suggestion for addressing the devaluation of a law should be backed by the threat of breaking that law.

      Nor do either of these apply to "internet radio stations" where there are far too many for any one to have significant coverage.

      • by tsg ( 262138 )
        The big music companies can't be forced to block-license their output. They do it for radio stations because it's in their interest to have their songs played in a context where a) large numbers of people can hear them, and b) if their song isn't playing, someone else's would be.

        Actually they can. The recording industry fought the compulsory licenses instituted for radio because they lost some control. It was in the consumer's best interest to have the compulsory licenses so the radio stations couldn't
      • The big music companies can't be forced to block-license their output.

        Sure they can. Copyright itself only exists (in the US) at Congress's whim.

    • Yeah right (Score:3, Insightful)

      by muyuubyou ( 621373 )
      $10 a month for unlimited downloads. Too bad neither you or the EFF will set the price.

      I think setting a fixed fee would be a bad idea. No incentive -> degraded quality -> socialism -> death of the industry.

      I'd gladly pay $200 for the latest Ferrari.
    • Re:Give 'em a chance (Score:3, Interesting)

      by sgtrock ( 191182 )
      I used to buy at least a couple of CDs a payday. I passed outside the RIAA's primary demographic of 18-34 quite a few years ago, and my music buying habits did diminish quite a bit. I was down to maybe one a month.

      About 5 years ago I quit buying any due to financial constraints. Once my situation improved, I didn't start buying CDs because; (a) I finally understood how the RIAA operates, (b) I really don't have time to sample tracks on sites like anymore, and (c) my tastes run to mainstream musi
      • by ccady ( 569355 )

        The point is that I bought albums because I wanted to hear all the tracks that never got airplay. So many of them were such great songs.

        Interesting. Most people complain that they are forced to buy 11 tracks of crap just to get a single track that they like.

        • Keep in mind I was talking about stuff I was buying a few decades ago. Just to give you some idea of the albums that were available then:

          * Rush's "2112" came out in 1976. The whole first side is dedicated to telling a story of a guy who discovers an old guitar in a heavily regimented world. He tries to get the powers that be to see how great it is to no avail. In despair, he commits suicide just before the returning rebels seize control. Side 2 has some kick ass tunes.
          * Jeff Lynne's "War of the Worlds
    • I wonder why it is that whenever a news story mentions 'legal' music downloads only 'pay to download' sites are ever mentioned. Similarly with 'charts' of downnloads. The 'download legally for free' or 'purchase direct from the arist' sites are never mentioned.
    • I'd pay $10 a month for an unlimited music download service offering lossless compressed titles.

      I'd drag down gigabytes of music every day for the first few months, slowing to gigabytes a week. I'd probably end up averaging over one album downloaded a day over the first year.

      And the company offering this service to me, and the thousands of others doing the same, would go bust. The server costs would be pretty hefty to cope with such download demands, and the bandwidth required to make this work would be
    • Wait a minute... You want 10 bucks a month to get you unlimited lossless material? Ofcourse you would, I would buy a Corvetter for $100, but it is so rediculously low that it won't happen...

      What keeps you from download 80 gig 1 month and never buying any more music for 3 years? $10 for 3 years, because it is lossless and unlimited...
      • Wait a minute... You want 10 bucks a month to get you unlimited lossless material? Ofcourse you would, I would buy a Corvetter for $100, but it is so rediculously low that it won't happen

        The RIAA currently brings in about $12 billion/year in revenues. If 40% of U.S. consumers signed up for an all-you-can download music service at $10/month, the RIAA would generate the same revenue, and would no longer incur the cost of manufacturing or distributing physical CDs. They could probably increase revenues by

  • Fair letter but ,,, (Score:4, Interesting)

    by SalsaDot ( 772010 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:26AM (#9842398) Homepage
    Its a fair letter but in this world political "support" speaks lounder than words, you know the kind of support that lines pockets.

    Whilst there are artists (ahem) who strive to be "superstars" and there are companies (the publishers who end up OWNING the stars and their material) who will push their resources to get them there -AND- there is an audience for these "pop" sensations, then the monetary incentive will be there to support the publishers and their whims. And that is that.

    I do wonder sometimes if the politicians passing these draconian laws have EVER copied a tape, made a compilation disc for the car OR HAVE TEENAGE KIDS who would be so inclined?
  • Support the EFF! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by faqmaster ( 172770 ) <[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:27AM (#9842405) Homepage Journal
    Buy a T-Shirt [], or become a member []. A sensible organization like this deserves your support.
    • They're sensible about everything but spam...and they're wrong enough about that that it cancels out the rest of their good karma, for me.
      • by Bozdune ( 68800 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:28AM (#9842938)
        You're throwing the baby out with the bath water. Because the ACLU supports the rights of KKK members (and anyone else) to demonstrate, do you therefore not support the ACLU? What political party, anywhere, has a platform each of whose individual planks you wholeheartedly support?

        It will never happen. The best you can hope for in life is to support organizations whose views MOSTLY correspond to yours. Unless, that is, you want to be all by yourself. What's that old joke? I think it's from MAD magazine, mid 60's -- one Frenchman is a restaurant owner, two Frenchman is a political party (apologies to the French).

        Bien soir.

        (I think the joke finishes, "three Frenchmen is a love triangle," in case anyone cares).
      • Glad to see I'm not the only one who feels that way.
        Sibling likens it to to the ACLU supporting the KKK's right to demonstrate, which is a flawed analogy. Allowing idiots to spout off doesn't hurt anyone, and is a valid concern of free speech. Spam is theft, costing money to those who run networks who then have to pass the costs on to users. It's been established that commercial advertising is NOT "Free speech" (which is not to say all spam is commercial. It's about consent, not content). Bringing up the KK
  • Maybe I am cynical (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mpost4 ( 115369 ) * on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:27AM (#9842406) Homepage Journal
    But I given up hope that anything good for fair use will come out of washington, The momentum from the clinton era is to strong now. And if Kerry gets in, he is bound to help his contributers back at hollywood, also (as much as I like Bush) Bush will not be any better, I don't think he has the time to look into and understand the issue at hand. Both canadates will not be good for fair use laws (better elect on other [more] important issues] So at this point I not going to worry about fair use anymore, it is dead, I will now give up (acturaly have a while back) and buy the DRM stuff (read iTMS, because atlest they are giving some ok rights to the user, read 5 computers can be autorized)

  • by AngryScot ( 795131 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:29AM (#9842413)
    I wonder what the current state of the computing industry would be like if during the 80's a bill similar to this was passed to stop double tape decks being manufactured?

    I belive that if this bill goes ahead it could act as a catalyst for other countries to pass similar laws and at the same time hurt the IT sector worldwide.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Except in China. China will be the last bastion of digital freedom.
    • Comparing tape-to-tape copying with CD-ripping/P2P is apples/oranges.

      There is a definite cost to illegally mass-distributing music by making multiple copies of a cassette. You'd have to buy a TON of blank tapes (not cheap). You'd only be able to make one copy at a time. You'd need a means to physically transport the copied tape to the recipient. All of that costs a lot of money and takes a lot of time to do.

      On the other hand, today all you need is a PC, CD-ripping software, and P2P software like Ka

      • "There is virtually no cost associated with CD-to-P2P distribution (about 15 minutes to convert an entire album to .mp3). Therefore there is little to discourage people from engaging in illegal copyright violation."

        Not only is there virtually no cost associated to p2p sharing, there is no profit there for the real pirates, those who have boxes of badly printed up DVDs under the trestle table or in the car boot and hide everything dodgy at the slightest hint of the authorities... In fact the real piracy is

      • " Comparing tape-to-tape copying with CD-ripping/P2P is apples/oranges."

        Same old song and dance (Aerosmith TM)...

        Comparing cassette copying with reel-to-reels is apples/oranges.

        Comparing radio with live performance is apples/oranges.

        Comparing DAT copies with cassette copying is apples/oranges.

        Comparing CD burning with cassette copying is apples/oranges.

        These arguments have been used since the days printed sheet music was common at home, all were 'the death of music'. The only thing new is the near-complet

      • I don't think he was necissarily saying that tape-to-tape is the same as P2P and cd-ripping. The entertainment industry DID try and stop VRC's and other tape based duplication methods.

        His comment was about what repercussions would this have had if it succeeded in the 80's. I have to wonder if we would have even been allowed tape based digital storage (or any removable or copyable (copiable?) magnetic storage for that matter), and without removable storage PC's would probably never have happened.
  • The problem is that the government will do anything to sustain the music industry. That involves wiping out the competition (P2P), because with P2P people can really choose the music they want to hear and discover alternative artists.
    They only care about copyright owners, not artists.
    • It's not a nice proposal, it's an empty proposal intended to make the EFF look charming.

      For starters, it's hinged on the notion that rightsholders will voluntarily license, and that downloaders will voluntarily pay.

      Does that sound reasonable to you? Really?

      Also note that the EFF proposal suggests that rightsholders would sue downloaders who don't pay. Sound familiar?

      • For starters, it's hinged on the notion that rightsholders will voluntarily license,

        They're suggesting a compulsory license, much like the one used in radio. That's on purpose to prevent the very thing you are apparently concerned with.

        and that downloaders will voluntarily pay.

        If the license is reasonable, why wouldn't they? To suggest otherwise is assuming all downloaders are only trying to avoid paying for it. That simply isn't true.
        • "They're suggesting a compulsory license, much like the one used in radio. That's on purpose to prevent the very thing you are apparently concerned with."

          Nope, it's not compulsory, take a look []. No rightsholder is forced to particpate if they don't want to, unlike other compulsories that you seem to be refering to.

          "If the license is reasonable, why wouldn't they? To suggest otherwise is assuming all downloaders are only trying to avoid paying for it. That simply isn't true."

          All downloaders are only t

          • Nope, it's not compulsory,

            You're right. The letter to the Senate doesn't say anything about it being voluntary and compares it to broadcast radio, which is compulsory. This is where it will fail since music delivery over the internet makes the current rights holders (the recording industry for the most part) obsolete.

            All downloaders are only trying to avoid paying? I don't know. Most? Absolutely.

            I have to disagree with this. I'm only counting people who would have bought the album except for the av
            • Again, I think that most P2P'ers like getting stuff for free, but we can agree to disagree on that.

              However, since rightsholders would have to opt into this system -- let's say some do and some don't, reasonable?

              So, downloaders who actually decide to voluntarily get a license would only be protected from those rightsholders who have opted in, and NOT those who have decided against doing so.

              Would you really want such a license? I mean, you still have to verify the "sharability" of the files you want to

              • The letter to the Senate didn't make the voluntary nature of this system clear. Thanks for the link.

                The failure in this system is going to be the lack of a clear line indicating what is covered by the license and what is not. The two possibilities I can see are people will buy the license with the misconception that it does cover everything (although it could be argued that the rights holders who aren't being compensated for the downloads are at least at partial fault for not taking advantage of the syst
                • "Asking people to pay for a license that doesn't cover everything and doesn't make it clear what isn't covered puts an unfair burden on them. For the most part, people are downloading music because it is incredibly easy to do. Making that voluntarily harder won't solve anything."

                  And that's exactly why I say that the EFF proposal is just smoke and mirrors...

  • It'll never happen (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jay Maynard ( 54798 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:31AM (#9842431) Homepage
    'It's time for a solution to the P2P conflict that pays artists, not lawyers.'

    The problem here is that Congress is full of lawyers bent on doing things that amount to full-employment programs for lawyers and accountants. A program like this one that would have the effect of reducing lawsuits has no chance at all.

    We complain loudly about conflict of interest by legislators and regulators, while ignoring the biggest one of all: that lawyers write laws. I believe that being a practicing attorney should bar one from being eligible to serve in Congress in much the same way as being an insurance company executive, as a practical matter if not a legal one, bars one from serving as an insurance regulator.
    • We complain loudly about conflict of interest by legislators and regulators, while ignoring the biggest one of all: that lawyers write laws.
      You're overlooking the other problem. The work product of a legislator is legislation. Making laws is their job. The problem is that there are only so many good laws to be made, and the production quota exceeds that number.
  • Why it won't work (Score:5, Insightful)

    by cluge ( 114877 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:33AM (#9842443) Homepage
    I hate to say this, but their are several reasons this won't work. Unless of course YOU write your congress person. [to be honest most people are too lazy]

    The EFF idea makes too much sense, and therfore violates about 10 rules of making law

    10 rules of making law
    a. Any law congress shall enact must be hard to understand and convoluted
    b. Any oppurtunity to get your face on TV to tackle a serious problem of your campaign contributer must be taken
    c. Do not pass any law that may in any way reduce any lawyers potential to earn money
    d. Keep starving artists that way
    e. The EFF is just like the ACLU - it's just a collection of letters that your constituants don't know about - but probably won't like
    f. If I don't understant it, I must fear it and pass legislation against it
    g. This letter contains the phrase " P2P technologies", get RIAA approval on how to think about this
    h. This letter contains the phrase "profound threat to innovation", get Microsoft approval after talking to the RIAA
    i. Anything that congress can meddle in the better
    j. If it's simple, makes sense, and doesn't require congressional involvement it must be wrong.

    Also remember that this is an election year. The eff proposal removes a potential income source from lawyers, the single strongest lobby in Congress. This will go nowhere until people take the time to write their congresspersons. May I humbly suggest that my fellow /.ers start writing.


  • by dpilot ( 134227 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:33AM (#9842444) Homepage Journal
    If gun control were pursued the way the INDUCE act goes after copyright violation:

    Fishing sinkers would be illegal because they *might* be melted down and recast into bullets.
    • Ah, but this is the way gun control is being pursued. Gun manufacturers are being sued and put on trial for the actions of sociopaths who buy their products. The argument is that certain types of guns have no legitimate purpose outside of crime, and so the manufacturers are profiting off an illegal enterprise. Sound familiar? You can't but fully-automatic weapons any more, or so I understand; but there are several semiautomatic guns out there which can, with a few modifications, be made fully automatic.
  • by SlashDread ( 38969 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @08:44AM (#9842516)
    I can -buy- a lifetime irrevocable licence to -it-.

    Not a plastic scratchy waste product. Not a shitty format digistream for my iPod.

    A -full- perpetual, amd fully paid up licence please. And THEN, ill pay.

    Ill burn my own dern copies. Ill mediashift too my own dern iPod. I just want a -licence-, and a one-time access to a 100% lossless audio format. And the burden of knowing Im a licensee, should be given to the RIAA. I fully expect THEM to proove Im a licensee, and as such can copy YOUR cd if mine gets lost.

    "This music was made for you and me"

    • Only a lifetime license? Why not a '1-person' sellable, transferable, inheritable license? You can inherit your parent's 33, 45, and 78 rpm records.
      • Perhaps. I have a problem with intangible stuff like music being treated as a "property" anyway.

        You know, Im going deaf in one ear, hopefully they can replace that function with a really cool hearing aid. Lets call it the iAid. Lets say it has 40TB memory. Its the year 2040 model.

        Can I still visit a concert?

  • It's too vague... (Score:5, Informative)

    by mratitude ( 782540 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:12AM (#9842761) Journal
    `(g)(1) In this subsection, the term `intentionally induces' means intentionally aids, abets, induces, or procures, and intent may be shown by acts from which a reasonable person would find intent to induce infringement based upon all relevant information about such acts then reasonably available to the actor, including whether the activity relies on infringement for its commercial viability. `(2) Whoever intentionally induces any violation identified in subsection (a) shall be liable as an infringer. `(3) Nothing in this subsection shall enlarge or diminish the doctrines of vicarious and contributory liability for copyright infringement or require any court to unjustly withhold or impose any secondary liability for copyright infringement.'.
    The first paragraph isn't unreasonable and even includes the "reasonable person" test. Anything can happen in a process involving lawyers, judges and law enforcement but the "reasonable person" test has a long history of staving off overzealous lawyers and enforcement knee-jerks.

    The problem is with the third paragraph. Making a copy of your legally purchased mechandise is still against the law. According to paragraph 3, even if you make a copy of an audio disc for your purposes; Should that copy ever be found in a condition by which it isn't under your immediate control (not on your person, on an internet connected PC, in your car) you are liable under the provisions of this law.
  • Make the business world go around.. ( so its a slow downward spiral, but it is still 'round' ).

    On a serious note, normally when we are discussing 'media copyrights', the holders are rarely the artists...

  • by cdipierr ( 4045 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @10:00AM (#9843256) Homepage
    I wrote to Dole & Edwards (the two NC senators) when Slashdot had the first INDUCE article.

    While I've yet to hear back form Edwards's office (not suprising considering his current campaign), I did hear back from Dole's.

    I was expecting the standard "but this is good for technology, live with it..." response, but instead got a short response that essentially said that she agreed that INDUCE might have some potential bad consequences for technology and innovation and that she'd investigate it.

    Now, obviously it was just a form letter response, but it's perhaps the first time I've had a senator actually respond with potentially encouraging news.

  • by Numen ( 244707 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @10:29AM (#9843511)
    The idea that without the record industry the artists will starve is nuts. The record industry comes very recent in human industry.

    Bands and musicians might care to start performing live as a job of work rather than as an act of cherry picking and earn a buck.

    There's no reason why musicians can't earn a living like brick layers, plumber, programmers etc all do. The need for the record industry is predicated upon a desire to turn a small proportion of people into multimillionaires.

    Pandora HAS openned the box and there's no going back. All this concern about trying to wrestling the P2P networks is just tilting at windmills.
  • This law SHOULD pass (Score:3, Interesting)

    by The Analog Kid ( 565327 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @10:53AM (#9843711)
    This is not a trolling attempt but this law SHOULD pass. This is a law that affects Joe Sixpack. The DMCA, that was a law that mainly affect the IT sector, but this law affects anyone who owns a computer, an iPod or anything else that could possibly be used for copyright infringement. People will finally see what crooks those elected leaders are, sure there is no such things as an honest politician and Joe Sixpack knows this, but he just may not know how their representatives are huge sellouts to corporations. Once all these Joe Sixpacks see what the hell is going on, something will be done. So let this law pass, it's the only way change will happen.
  • Why on earth would these assholes propose a new fee instead of pointing out that the act would make every single recording device in the U.S. illegal? It makes me wonder how much money the recording industry gives to the EFF.

    The act is wrong, and should be opposed on that basis. Anything else is just giving up, and the fee scheme is nothing but theft of money from those of us that do not copy other peoples property.

  • P2P gives people too much of a choice when choosing their music.

    The RIAA and Clear Channel have a monopoly over the listening audience in the states.

    Pay per download can still control what a user can or cannot listen to by only making certain records and songs available. It's not just losing money that record companies are afraid of, it's losing control over the distribution of music.

    Sure the radio is free (for now) but the listeners do not control what is played over the air.
  • by KnarfO ( 320113 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @11:50AM (#9844338) Homepage
    I think it's time to re-examine the whole concept of copyright and intellectual property. Unless it can be proven that a person or business is profiting from copyright infringement, and that those profits are having a direct negative impact on the IP owner's ability to gain from their work, then I don't see why we should not let people share information (including music), and encourage businesses and aritists to find other ways to make a living from art, ie: performances, merchandise, etc..
  • by patrik ( 55312 ) <pbutler AT killertux DOT org> on Friday July 30, 2004 @01:51PM (#9845968) Homepage
    As far as I can tell people will always be file sharing, so why don't we come up with a responsible network that gives some incentive to the sharers to be responsible. Why is P2P so good? Simply put, high availability. Beyond that low cost to the owners of the material since they don't have to own a lot of servers and whatnot. So we need a network that can track sharers trades and charge them a nominal fee (read much less than current costs). I haven't seen much in the way of this but I did google across a relatively young and in the works network called bitmunk []. It's still in beta and whatnot, but they seem pretty serious about all this, I even talked to to a programmer there and bothered him for some technical questions and he seemed pretty receptive to my comments.

    They seem to have the right idea, no DRM but they do have watermarks so they can track you down and cancel your account if you start sharing elsewhere. Maybe this doesnt' solve sharing among friends but, that's probably not a solvable problem, iTunes doesn't even solve this.

    Of course all this means we have to return the copyrights to the artists or someone more responsible to the RIAA.

    My 2 cents: check out the network give them ideas, they seem pretty bright and eager to please.

  • The EFF letter makes a serious policitical oopsie by using the term "collective license".

    The word "collective" is an instant turnoff for Republicans (as well as Libertarians), and that's over half of congress at the moment. Say "collective" and from your own mouth you have labeled yourself as a socialist crypto-commie trying to steal everything that isn't nailed down, keep most of it for yourselves and your cronies, and use the rest to buy votes from illegal immigrtants and welfare cheats.

    It's also not
  • for something like copying Excel Saga DVDs. The FBI Warning is replaced with the following text.
    • The contents of this Excel Saga videogram are licensed for private home viewing only and are protected under the terms of both US Code (title 17, Sections 501 and 506) and the 1998 ACROSS treaty (AKA the Don't Toucha MY Toot-toot Pact).

      Under the express orders of Ilpalazzo, supreme leader of ACROSS, any unauthroized duplication, public-screening or use of the packaging as a coaster, musical instrument or contraceptive device is strictly prohibited, and will be dealt with in the most severe manner possib

The best defense against logic is ignorance.