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Feds Overstate Software Piracy's Link To Terrorism 448

Posted by Zonk
from the gotta-make-a-point dept.
Lucas123 writes "Attorney General Michael Mukasey claims that terrorists sell pirated software as a way to finance their operations, without presenting a shred of evidence for his case. He's doing it to push through a controversial piece of intellectual property legislation that would increase IP penalties, increase police power, set up a new agency to investigate IP theft, and more. 'Criminal syndicates, and in some cases even terrorist groups, view IP crime as a lucrative business, and see it as a low-risk way to fund other activities,' Mukasey told a crowd at the Tech Museum of Innovation last week."
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Feds Overstate Software Piracy's Link To Terrorism

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  • Well duh (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Slimee (1246598) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:26PM (#22945384) Journal
    When has the government ever presented a shred of evidence for any of their radical claims and crusades?
    • Re:Well duh (Score:5, Insightful)

      by mrbluze (1034940) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:30PM (#22945442) Journal

      Attorney General Michael Mukasey claims that terrorists sell pirated software as a way to finance their operations
      Who needs to sell pirated software when you can get it for free? And what does the government say to the claims that its secretive services launder money and participate in the illegal drug trade to.. er.. spread freedom and er.. prosperity and.. what's the other one? Democracy, that's right. You launder money and poison my kids, and call everybody a criminal and terrorist, and I get to vote for you - that's sweet. Nawww, not a shred of truth in it Mommy!
      • Re:Well duh (Score:5, Funny)

        by blhack (921171) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:53PM (#22945740)

        Who needs to sell pirated software when you can get it for free?
        Now, most people YOU know would probably know how to get warez for free. Most people I know know how to get warez for free, but most PEOPLE don't.

        DO you think the type of person that requires help moving their computer from one room to another would be able to figure out how to work an FTP client, or what a "tracker" was?

        This is why my sister always asks me for a copy of Photoshop for her birthday. She has no idea how to get it for free online.
        SHHH!!!! Don't tell her I have been secretly slipping her copies of the GIMP all these years.

        Kids, if you like a piece of software...BUY IT!
        • Re:Well duh (Score:4, Insightful)

          by Oktober Sunset (838224) <sdpage103@ y a h oo.co.uk> on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @07:35PM (#22946202)
          Most people don't know how to get warez for free, even more people don't know where to buy warez either. Where the fuck do you buy a pirated copy of photoshop?

          Dodgy bloke on the corner? No, he just has shitty DVD's.
          That shifty looking geyser at the pub? Nope, All he has are the latest chart singles's and the last few Now! CDs.
          My mates cousin nobby? Nah, he can chip my Xbox and sell me pirate games, but no Photoshop here.

          I've seen pirated software at computer fairs a long time ago, in the days of dialup, but these days, no chance. The common way for someone who doesn't know where to get it online, is the old CD passed about, you only need 1 nerd to download it, then hte CD can go round dozen of thier mates.

          the only pirate stuff I've ever seen actually sold anytime recently are console games sold to chavs with no PC. I've not seen anyone selling a pirate PC game or software since like 1996. Even back in the days of the Amiga, all the pirate stuff we had was copied off mates, either you bought the real one, or you copied a mate's real one, no-one bought a copy, all the dodgy market stalls sold fuzzy-pictured VHS, never computer games or software.
          Seriously, do you know any shop, market stall, or random bloke at all who would sell you a pirate copy of photoshop, or any other PC software?
          • Re:Well duh (Score:5, Informative)

            by Ryan Mallon (689481) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @08:12PM (#22946576)

            You may not even know if software you are buying is pirated. A few years back a friend lent me a cd folder full of games. All of them had the game logos on the cds, and most of them had full colour booklets with them. I ended up asking my friend how much he had spent on the games in the folder, and replied: hardly anything, they are all pirated. He bought them somewhere in Asia. They take piracy a bit more seriously over there, you don't just get a blank cd with the games name scribbled on it in felt pen, you get a full colour box, authentic looking cd, the works.

            The bigger problem for game companies than people downloading torrents, is illegal factories which are producing pirated versions of games (and other types of software) which can be sold at lost cost, are hard to tell apart from the real deal. Many people who buy these games are unaware that they even have an illegal copy.

    • Re:Well duh (Score:5, Funny)

      by Slashdot Suxxors (1207082) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:30PM (#22945446)
      Judging from the high quality of his videos, it should be clear to anyone that Osama obviously uses cracked versions of Adobe Final Cut. We don't need the government to tell us that.
    • Behold! When I noticed a response to this I secretly told myself "well it's probably a duh response", knowing just how well known the Fed's scare tactics come with "dem damn turrists". haha! I was correct!
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by PachmanP (881352)
      No no you have it all wrong. They have all the evidence they need. I think most of us here would agree that piracy does cost corporations some amount of money/profit. Well, you see, Terrorism is defined as "cutting into corporate profit" not this silly notion of killing civilians to make political statements. That's why they're insurgents in Iraq. They're making someone in the military industrial complex wads of cash!

      Did I really just say that? I've been here to long.
    • by nurb432 (527695)
      When have they ever NEEDED to present evidence when they can scare the public?

      Most are sheep, and believe the garbage fed to them by the media.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      "I have here in my hand a list of two hundred and five people that were known to the Secretary of State as being members of the Communist Party and who nevertheless are still working and shaping the policy of the State Department." -- Joseph McCarthy, who was never, ever compelled to show anyone the list or provide one shred of evidence to support any of his claims, and who, to this day, enjoys the posthumous support of dumbasses all across America.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by denton420 (1235028)
      It makes sense to me.

      If you can make a reasonable, unfounded, and simply ignorant link to terrorists on any basis, it is perfectly alright to circumvent the constitution.

      I think if the constitution needs to be trampled on to stop terrorists, then we are lucky to have this emboldened administration down on all fours playing twister on it.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mpe (36238)
      When has the government ever presented a shred of evidence for any of their radical claims and crusades?

      The US Government hasn't even yet provided much in the way of credible evidence to backup their 9/11 conspiracy theory. So it would be expecting a lot to expect them to provide any evidence for anything more recent than about 7 years ago.
  • by PlatyPaul (690601) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:29PM (#22945418) Homepage Journal
    ... Suicide Bomber Edition.

    Putting the "death" back in BSOD.
    • by DrYak (748999) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @07:06PM (#22945894) Homepage
      They just forgot to find a way to somewhat also cram the "child pornography" keyword together with "terrorist" and "pirate".
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by hairyfeet (841228)
        Don't worry, I'm sure that next week they'll release a statement that the evil IP pirates are using their ill gotten gains to buy nasty Linux servers which they use to further their evil organizations by renting websites to child pornographers and terrorists!

        But seriously, am I the only one who is getting tired of the obvious whoring of our rights to the multinational corporations? At least in the old days they would TRY to keep the suspension of disbelief going. Now they are as bad as 80's pro wrestling

  • No shame (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Hatta (162192) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:29PM (#22945428) Journal
    I can't believe how shamelessly politicians are using the terrorist bogeyman, and how easily people fall for it. Well, yes I can. But really, what's next? I'd like to say it can't get any more ludicrous than this, but I bet it can.
    • Re:No shame (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Gat0r30y (957941) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:57PM (#22945792) Homepage Journal
      It really is quite shameful, I've seen software pirates. They are the dudes on the side streets of Shanghai selling "Genuine Windows Vista" DVD's for a dollar (about 7 RMB). They most certainly are not terrorists.
      And to answer your question, next the government will claim terrorists are raising funds through an elaborate cheese laundering operation. First stealing US Gov. Cheese, then selling it on the black market at fantastic profit margins. Everyone, please turn in your local Dairy Farmer (he's undoubtedly in on the operation)!
      • Re:No shame (Score:5, Informative)

        by waveman (66141) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @07:42PM (#22946278) Homepage
        I have been looking at the evidence over the years and it seems that terrorists are more likely to get funding from making and selling illegal drugs than from marginal activities like copying software.

        The total spend on illegal drugs in the US alone is over $1 trillion!. This money goes to organized crime, gangsters, crooked police and politicians, and to terrorists.

        Have a look at Afghanistan, which is currently supplying a large percentage of the world's heroin trade. The funds are then used to fight the US, NATO and other allies in Afghanistan and elsewhere.

        Just another cost of the "war on drugs". Current US drug policies, which are also forced on the rest of the world, are widely recognized to be counter-productive. And why? The side-effects of heroin are constipation and the risk of overdose. Overdose is a problem caused by erratic potencies, which is a result of illegality.

        However certain people make a lot of money from the war on drugs. Thus the policy does not change.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Yurka (468420)
        You think you're being facetious, but yes, there is an black market in cheese, and it does have fantastic profit margins. USDA regulations forbid importation of any raw milk cheese not aged for at least 60 days; people who like younger fermented curd really do support smuggling operations of said cheesy comestible from Europe with their $$.
  • Well then (Score:5, Funny)

    by Drooling Iguana (61479) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:30PM (#22945444)
    It's a good thing sites like thepiratebay.org are making the sale of physical copies of pirated media much less profitable. Get those Torrents running for Uncle Sam!
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Nice joke. As with most good jokes you actually present a solution to the accused "problem".

      If what he said is true there is a certain way to ensure that the terrorists do not make any money on infringing copyright. And this solution would also ensure that there is never a market for illegal copies of copyrighted works. Piracy (as the music industry is defining it) will destroy the market of the terrorists, and anybody else trying to make money off illegally copying copyright protected works.

      The solutio

      • by Gazzonyx (982402)
        Unfortunately, in your insightful response (no sarcasm, that really was insightful and I wouldn't have caught it if you didn't say something), you stumbled upon the counter problem; if software were free, people with the ability would charge for the service instead of the software. If this theory doesn't hold up, open source will have a bit problem in the coming years. Ouch, I just realized how I've just managed to cut myself with a double edged sword.
  • Utter lies (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TheMeuge (645043) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:30PM (#22945448)
    Normally I am very reserved when it comes to political commentary. However, this time I simply cannot help but note that the show has certainly reached a new low, and we should all be ashamed of ourselves.

    It is absolutely despicable that we've become so fat and complacent, that we allow our government to pull these sorts of stunts. Looking at the proposed legislation, one should note that IP infringement might be punished more severely than rape, if these laws are to become real. Actually, we should see the whole thing as a rape... the rape of our Constitution, and every value that made our society ever so slightly better than the regimes we like to fight so much.
    • Re:Utter lies (Score:5, Insightful)

      by jamstar7 (694492) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:57PM (#22945800)
      Thing is, raping a citizen only harms the citizen. Raping a corporation harms a campaign contributor. Which way do you think your Congresscritter is gonna vote?

      Why do you think campaign financing reform is drastically needed, but will never happen? When the government puts the needs of corporations before the needs of its citizens, it's already way too late. Hope you have your bug-out package and bribe money to get a coyote to pass you through the border...

  • by realmolo (574068) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:33PM (#22945498)
    My copy of Windows XP doesn't just *crash*, it crashes into *buildings*.
  • Duh (Score:2, Insightful)

    by superdana (1211758)
    They overstate everything's link to terrorism.
  • oh, how convenient (Score:5, Insightful)

    by vajaradakini (1209944) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:41PM (#22945588)
    Everything that's illegal and/or generally not approved of by the US government "supports the terrorists".

    Smoke locally grown pot (as most pot in the US is): you're supporting the terrorists!
    Download your music through a peer to peer network: you're supporting the terrorists!
    Pirate your software: you're supporting the terrorists!

    It's the red scare [wikipedia.org] all over again, but with a different enemy, isn't it? "Don't forget to go spend all your money on things you don't need and can't afford. If you don't spend more than you make and support our corporate buddies, you clearly want the terrorists to win."
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by N1ck0 (803359)

      Everything that's illegal and/or generally not approved of by the US government "supports the terrorists".
      Pssst... The US Government supports the terrorists too.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by ZenDragon (1205104)
      Afghanistan IS one of the worlds largest Opium producers... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opium_production_in_Afghanistan [wikipedia.org]
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by evanbd (210358)

        And that's relevant to the parent posts' point how, exactly?

        I know more than one person who will smoke weed, but won't smoke opium because it actually does support terrorists, at least somewhat...

        The fact that you have a personal objection to other people's drug of choice doesn't necessarily mean those people are supporting terrorists. I suppose a straw man argument is better than an outright fabrication, but you're dangerously close to the claims of the A.G.

  • Oh no I'm confused!! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by commodoresloat (172735) * on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:42PM (#22945594)
    But I just got done learning that Open Source is terrorism [theobjectiveobserver.com]. Now we are told that terrorists pirate commercial software? Why would they do that if they have free alternatives? Help! I don't know who to hate!!
  • Last I checked the government uses terrorism (search and seizure laws) to finance their law enforcement operations. Hell, the CIA slings drugs to finance their operations too. I'm so sick and tired of this terrorism crap. All of this legislation is trying to address the symptoms of the problem and nobody wants to get to the root of it.
  • I swear, if I see the word 'terrorism' again I'll scream. Perhaps it is because I am outwith the USA and not properly indoctirnated, but 'the home of the brave' seems to be afraid of shadows these days, at least at a government level. Do the USA citizens really go along with all this?
     
    • by jamstar7 (694492) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @07:07PM (#22945906)

      Perhaps it is because I am outwith the USA and not properly indoctirnated, but 'the home of the brave' seems to be afraid of shadows these days, at least at a government level. Do the USA citizens really go along with all this?

      No, the government really isn't afraid of terrorists, but making sure the citizens are allows them to expand their budgets, clamp down harder on John Q Citizen's movements and basic Constitutionally-recognised freedoms, and allows it to ignore international conventions to the point where the US has already been declared an outlaw nation. Geedubya has already told us the 'War on Terror' will last over a hundred years. That's 100 years of increased taxation, failing economy, and increased repression strictly for the gain of the politicians and their corporate masters. Our money is nearly worthless now, and it's just going to get worse as the government keeps pouring money down the Iraq/Iran/Middle East rathole. Welcome to our wonderful 21st Century, and don't forget to pray.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by sycomonkey (666153)
        Our money is not anywhere close to worthless. The dollar has been dropping, yes, but we hardly have the hyperinflation that actually results in worthless currency. The Duetchmark in the 1920's was worthless. The dollar is just dropping a bit compared to other currencies. It's hardly ideal, but it could be much worse.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Reziac (43301) *
          Well, dunno about you, but MY purchasing power has plummeted in the past few months like I've never seen before, and I struggled my small business through the Carter years, so I'm not new at this. In just the past year my costs have gone up 40% while my sales have dropped to 1/5th of normal -- and in total effect, this *functionally* differs not at all from the dollar being worth only half what it was a year ago.

  • by blhack (921171) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:48PM (#22945674)
    They're throwing the word "terrorism" around a bit too much here, but at least a BIG part of the movie bootlegging scene is rooted in Russian Organized crime. Telecine machines are really expensive and, believe it or not, bootlegging movies can be very profitable.

    No, i'm not talking about grabbing the latest RLS off of Usenet, or racing it across FTPs. I'm talking about large scale DVD pressing facilities that are selling to the guy who is, in turn, selling to people on the street corner. Groups get to release high quality stuff, the Mob gets their source for a DVD. Its very simple.

    Or did you all really think that guys were risking serious jail time and throwing down thousands on Telecine machines because it was "fun"?

    Now, i don't know much about the warez scene, but I would imagine that its a very similar situation.

    Organized crime != terrorism. But a lot of the really large scale operations are certainly not being run by a rogue group of 16 year olds.
  • Republican Legacy (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Doc Ruby (173196) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @06:50PM (#22945702) Homepage Journal
    I would like to thank the millions of people who voted for Bush twice (in no more than two elections), and for Congressional Republicans for something like seven or more times, for making our country both safer and freer, and operated with more integrity, just like y'all said it would be.

    But I can't, because that would be a lie.
  • by Ungrounded Lightning (62228) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @07:09PM (#22945932) Journal
    If they REALLY want to go after internet sources of funding for terrorists they should start with the spam / phishing /identity theft gangs.

    That's, what? Hundreds of billions a year in direct theft and extortion of people's and companies' hard-earned cash, plus more multibillions in anti-malware products, damage to data, equipment, and network infrastructure, costs to overbuild the net to handle the bogus traffic, lost revenue due to DDoSing, etc. Not to mention the ongoing construction and debugging of a technology that can be used for even more nefarious purposes - including espionage and sabotage.
  • by ClamIAm (926466) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @07:15PM (#22946000)
    Wow, the Bush Administration has picked some real winners for that ol' Attorney General position. I really hoped they would replace Gonzales with someone who has a little more integrity. Unfortunately for the nation, it seems they're more interested in lapdogs who will parrot the Administration's version of reality, no matter the cost.

    Moving on to Mukasey specifically, this little fib isn't the only time he's tried to distort reality. Just a few days ago, he stated [sfgate.com] there had been "a call from someplace that was known to be a safe house in Afghanistan and we knew that it came to the United States. We didn't know precisely where it went."

    The interesting thing about this comment is that it's impossible to know whether it's true. This supposed call was not referred to after 9/11, nor during the 9/11 Commission hearings, nor at any other time until last Thursday.

    However, even if we give them the benefit of the doubt, his arguments that draw on this statement are lies. This is because he made this comment in support of increased surveillance, and also to support the despicable circumvention of the justice system with regard to telecom companies.

    The lie is that "we knew about this call but we weren't able to do anything because only with this new, super-powered law can we do that". The surveillance laws at the time he says this call took place absolutely allowed the government to listen in on it. They didn't even need a warrant, as even under the older FISA law, warrants were not needed for calls that comes into the US from outside it.

    He lied again when he voiced support for putting telecom companies above the law. Even though Mukasey was a federal judge, he claimed that the telco lawsuits would let the whole world know how our intelligence organizations operate.

    Fellow Slashdotters, I hope you join me in saying: what the fuck?! We can't continue to let these clowns get away with shit like this. I admit I've been as lazy as most "concerned citizens" in the US seem to be lately, but seriously, I cannot allow my democracy to be flushed down the toilet by a bunch of arrogant fucks who think they can get away with whatever they want.
    • by Chris Burke (6130) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @08:20PM (#22946648) Homepage
      You've got a good grip on the situation, so I have to fix one factual error:

      They didn't even need a warrant, as even under the older FISA law, warrants were not needed for calls that comes into the US from outside it.

      Yes they were. FISA explicitly spells out when a warrant is not required, and it is only when it is believed that no "U.S. Person" is a party to the call. A "U.S. person" basically means a U.S. citizen no matter where they are, or a non-citizen who is legally within the U.S. So that means any call with one end in the U.S. (where it isn't known the party in the u.s. is here illegally), or even a call that takes place entirely in a foreign country that includes a U.S. citizen, requires a warrant.

      However that said, the argument that they needed a new law is BS because here is what they could have done perfectly legally: Tap the call in question immediately, and then any time within the next three days showed up before the FISA court to ask for a retro-active warrant. And as FISA's record clearly shows, if they had any reason at all to believe the call was suspect, FISA would have granted the warrant.

      In other words, and this is important because it applies to all the recent surveilance too: The only reason not to get a warrant is if they had no reason at all to believe that the call is of any interest, not one tiny scrap of hearsay to suggest that it's a terrorist call. It means that as far as they knew, it was no different than the billions of other calls made daily.

      So remember, whenever they say they need a new law to let them listen in on certain phone calls, that law would ONLY allow them the new power to listen to calls that are, as far as they could possibly tell, COMPLETELY INNOCENT.
    • sneak-and-peek (Score:4, Informative)

      by TheGratefulNet (143330) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @08:35PM (#22946728)
      today I had a non-fun experience with my landlord (I rent).

      for the last 2 yrs or so, they have been sending out letters saying there is an 'annual apartment inspection' and that I have to let the landlord in.

      the thing is, I've read as much as I can about calif civil codes and there is NO provision for 'annual inspections'. hmmmmm.

      so today when the maintenance guy came by (he was 'checking' every single apartment for god knows what) I told him NO!. I refuse.

      I then asked what they were looking for and he blew me off saying that since I won't let him in, I won't get to know! sheesh!

      a few yrs ago there was an 'idea' by asscroft (may extreme shit be upon him) to create something called TIPS:

      http://www.havenworks.com/gov/operation-tips/ [havenworks.com]

      and today during a web search, I came across this link:

      http://www.antiwar.com/orig/brimmer1.html [antiwar.com]

      which also pointed to this TIPS thing.

      I'm curious, any other /.ers find that the place you are renting from is NOW, suddenly, starting to do 'inspections' ?

      clearly this is a sneak-n-peek but just not done directly by cops. they get our own citizens to rat on each other.

      the TIPS thing was supposed to be cancelled in 2002 or so. you don't really believe it was cancelled do you? it just went more underground.

      I mention this because the current administration is running a-foul of the law of the land and he's trying to write his own 'king' ticket. they know that by getting citizens to spy on each other, that will keep the climate of fear alive.

      anyway, hopefully hearing about TIPS and the 'annual apartment inspections' (that are quite illegal by my reading of section 1954 of the calif civil code. any lawyers here want to comment on that?) will get you clued in and aware of what is really going on in our country.

      if the apartment manager wants to 'see your place' they should have an URGENT and real reason and not just to 'check for code violations'.

      the story they used on me was they wanted to 'check outlets, the carpet, the balcony, general condition and plumbing around the apartment'. sure sounds like a FISHING EXPEDITION to me. what do you think?

      I told them no and they wrote 'refused' on my form. how much you want to bet this ends up in some DC filing cabinet next to my name?

      wonderful country we now have, here ;(

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Reziac (43301) *
        I don't know where you are, but Palmdale, California, has a relatively-new mandatory rental property inspection process in place. The idea is to root out slumlords by discovering substandard rentals... but what do you bet it's more often used to "inspect" premises where a warrant can't (yet) be reasonably acquired? Remember once any gov't official is in the door, he can write you up for ANYTHING, and that writeup CAN be the basis for a search warrant and police raid. Even something as trivial as a cracked e
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          you are now scaring me ;(

          (seriously).

          I'm in norcal. bay area.

          I don't like the sound of this intimidation game (of theirs).

          I'm protesting because I think its a bad precedent to ALLOW these unauthorized phishing expeditions. and if that is enough to get me 'in trouble' then I think we all have a lot to worry about, in the long run.

          again, this seems to be a very new thing - the last year or two, only. before that, I think I had a good 10 years or more (in the same place) of undisturbed 'quiet enjoyment' (ev
  • by JSBiff (87824) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @07:24PM (#22946102) Journal
    I don't get it. How will passing more laws change that criminals will resort to crime to make easy money? Aside from the fact the government didn't present evidence that it's occuring, *even if it is*, how will these new laws make any difference? It's kind of analogous to laws against gun ownership. Even if you pass a law against gun possession/buying/selling, criminals will still obtain the guns, and will still have a black market in guns. I mean, the terrorists are *gasp* making money off the opium trade in Afghanistan, and I wouldn't be surprised to find out they're making money off of gun running / arms sales. I'm not saying they are, but the point is, just because you criminalize something doesn't make it stop happening to any significant extent. Often it just makes the illegal conduct even *more* lucrative.

    I've noticed a trend in modern politics that the answer to problems with people breaking the law is to pass more laws. Instead of, you know, trying to enforce the laws we already have. Of course, the new laws never seem to hit their nominal 'target' but instead hit other targets. In this case, isn't *selling* pirated copyrighted materials already a *criminal* offense? I was always understanding that individual, not-for-profit copying was a civil matter, while commercial piracy was a criminal matter. Is that not the case?

    More great 'leadership' from our do-nothing government.
  • by vik (17857) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @07:42PM (#22946280) Homepage Journal
    So, the situation in the US would be much improved if someone had the balls to clearly state terrorism manipulates senators so they pass laws that only create the impression of security. Terrorists then create so many false positives that they can hide with impunity. What was it? 1 in 300 Americans is suspected of terrorist links?

    As a bonus, fixing this would get the background reasoning for senate decisions investigated and put out in the open where it should be.

    Vik :v)
  • Uhh... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Trintech (1137007) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @07:45PM (#22946318)
    More strict IP laws in the US will keep terrorists that are in other countries from selling pirated software? I don't get it. Unless they are trying to say that US citizens are the ones buying most of this pirated software, it doesn't really even make sense.
  • Oil (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Lost Engineer (459920) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @08:05PM (#22946530)
    That's where terrorists get their money. And/or drugs depending on which terrorists we're talking about. Why in the hell would you sell pirated CDs for a profit of what a dollar per disc when you can just a) wait for a rich sympathizer to give you money or b) run protection for a drug trafficker for untold millions.

    In other news Timothy McVeigh sold bumper stickers and so the Feds have launched a task force to crack down on bumper sticker trademark slogan piracy.
  • There's a shock (Score:4, Insightful)

    by PingXao (153057) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @09:27PM (#22947090)
    One of the biggest problems modern free societies face is an alleged free press that doesn't bother to check the facts about anything. If they had bothered to check the facts in this case, it should naturally lead them to the next logical question: What else is being claimed as fact with no evidence whatsoever? There's a whole lot of mis- and dis-information out there (not to mention outright lies and propaganda) and no good way for the general public to recognize it when it's spoon-fed to them. God knows the press/media isn't doing its job anymore.
  • Real terrorism (Score:3, Insightful)

    by suck_burners_rice (1258684) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @09:51PM (#22947248)
    Studies by experts show that 100% of those running pirated software have a computer. This means that ownership of a computer may indicate involvement in software piracy, a terrorist act. Police should have new powers to arrest people who exit a computer store with a new computer. Meanwhile, real terrorists should continue firing rockets on neighboring communities [youtube.com] while the world does nothing.
  • by Eskarel (565631) on Wednesday April 02, 2008 @11:46PM (#22947880)
    Ya see, the funny thing about all of this, is that the reason people buy these things is because they want to feel less guilty about their purchase(I paid for it, it's not my business whether the seller is genuine). It's not huge in the states, but I've known folks who went for that Russian allofmp3 or who bought knock off DVD's in Bali, because they felt better doing that than just downloading it without paying for it.

    Basically the organized criminals have discovered what the RIAA and MPAA never seem to work out, which is to say that people will pay for the ability to feel legitimate in their purchases.

    Sure the legal justification is shaky at best(and in some places purchasing stolen goods can get you jail time), and the funds are going to people who are likely more morally repugnant than the record industry, but people pay it.

  • by Dunbal (464142) on Thursday April 03, 2008 @02:24AM (#22948652)

    People PAY for pirated software? LOL. Glad I'm not funding terrorism, because I don't pay.

  • by SpacePunk (17960) on Thursday April 03, 2008 @09:47AM (#22950686) Homepage
    'IP' (hate that term) piracy is just small beans compared to Identity Theft, and the government doesn't even seem to be considering passing legislation that would protect the victims from identity thieves and the resulting collection hassles.
  • by unity100 (970058) on Thursday April 03, 2008 @10:06AM (#22950890) Homepage Journal
    Decades of experience shows that almost all terrorist organizations are supplied by donations from middle eastern countries, which has oil as their main product of export. NSA should arrest anyone driving a car, because they are indirectly supporting terrorism.
  • by ultranova (717540) on Thursday April 03, 2008 @11:26AM (#22951824)

    Criminal syndicates, and in some cases even terrorist groups, view IP crime as a lucrative business, and see it as a low-risk way to fund other activities,' Mukasey told a crowd at the Tech Museum of Innovation last week.

    Seeing how I certainly wouldn't want to fund such scum, and how it is impossible for a casual consumer to tell counterweight goods from genuine ones, I suppose this means that I'll have to download all of my IP stuff from BitTorrent from now on. Yes, I know, it might hurt the creators; but if you pay anyone, the money might find its way to the hands of terrorists, and we wouldn't want that, now would we ?

    If you don't warez, the terrorists win ! Think of the children and keep those torrents seeding !

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