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Purported ACTA Wishlist Would Put DMCA To Shame 348

Posted by timothy
from the shame-is-such-a-strong-word dept.
ulash writes "Ars Technica has an article about the (alleged) leaked 'wishlist' that RIAA submitted to the US government back in March of this year listing what they wish to see as a part of ACTA. The list includes such gems as forced filtering of materials by the ISPs, gutting the parts of the DMCA that provides safe harbor to the ISPs, and even restricting supplies of 'optical grade polycarbonate' in countries 'with high rates of production of pirated optical discs.' While the effectiveness of such a 'wishlist' on the law is not by any means objectively measurable, if one takes into account how *AA was instrumentative in the passing of DMCA, I think it is more than likely that they will get at least some of their wishes."
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Purported ACTA Wishlist Would Put DMCA To Shame

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  • At what point (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @10:55AM (#24015939)
    At what point are they satisfied?
    • Re:At what point (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Endo13 (1000782) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:01AM (#24016045)

      It looks like they won't be satisfied until they can charge an "entertainment tax" that everyone on earth has to pay simply for being alive. And of course, dictate exactly how much that tax must be.

      • Re:At what point (Score:5, Insightful)

        by dintech (998802) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:35AM (#24016509)
        I can't conceive that RIAA members would ever submit to a fixed rate payment system unless they were backed into a corner. The main objective of all this lobbying is to defend the monopoly against newcomers to the content distribution game and lock in consumers to their existing business model.

        How can you grow your business year on year without disproportionately raising the tax. Cut costs by lowering lower quality? Make less content? This levels the playing field with the YouTube generation and that's not where the *AAs want to go.

        Right now, the monopolies are looking for ways to safeguard the business models which keep them at the top of the game. Since they're still holding all the financial cards, expect this very powerful lobby to continue to shape the rules of your country for the foreseeable future.
      • by jollyreaper (513215) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:42AM (#24016647)

        It looks like they won't be satisfied until they can charge an "entertainment tax" that everyone on earth has to pay simply for being alive. And of course, dictate exactly how much that tax must be.

        Citizen! Did you see Love Guru, the hit new Mike Meyers comedy?

        No.

        Traitor! The cost of a ticket has already been debited from your account.

        WTF!

        Citizen! Have you seen the latest Halloween, the hit new Michael Meyers slasher?

        No.

        Eh, can't really fault you on that one, it sucked. We're still deducting the cost of a ticket but crediting it to a better movie.

        WTF!

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by invader_vim (1243902)

          You missed one...

          Citizen! Have you seen any Hollywood blockbuster films recently?

          No, I went to see an independent fi--

          TERRORIST!!!!

      • by Mix+Master+Nixon (1018716) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:44AM (#24016663)

        Let them just try it. Why keep shooting yourself in the foot when you can blow the whole leg off?

      • Re:At what point (Score:5, Interesting)

        by rtb61 (674572) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:50AM (#24016757) Homepage
        No, it has nothing to do with profitability of corporations. The underlying basis is power and lust. The RIAA/MPAA works for organisations that target most of their works at children. Their desire is for unlimited power and control. They want to be the only source of information, the only point of access for self 'sic' expression, they want to totally define public thought and they wish to force adoration for them from the general public.

        This is clearly demonstrated by their willingness to punish children, to control their lives, sending them to jail for copying music whilst simultaneously promoting the self destructive practices within that age group via that same content, in affect priming them for intimate contact with publishing executives.

        The only constraints that will limit the corruptive practises of these organisations are the ones forced upon by the general public, those that appreciate that the quality of an industry is not defined by the profit it makes but by the nature of the products it produces and whether that product supports a healthy society or as is clearly apparent the product in fact attacks society, tears down family values and, even promotes criminal behaviour.

        • Hyperbole alert!!!

          What child has gone to jail for copying songs? Not one. No child has even been brought up on criminal charges; yes, they've tried to get them into court mainly because they can be intimidated, but that's a different level than jail.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Reziac (43301) *

        What, like the British television tax??

        Tho that one at least goes to support publicly-available broadcasts. If the **AA were to get such a tax enacted (and I'm sure they'd love to collect an annual fee for every receiving and/or recording device) it would go directly into their own executives' pockets.

    • When every citizen is forced to listen to RIAA music every minute of the day, and is paying for each minute. No, wait... then they would just plateau, and there wouldn't be any new ways left to gouge the "consumers" (I hate that word, by the way, but it is the perfect embodiment of how they view their customers).
      • Re:At what point (Score:4, Insightful)

        by somersault (912633) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:47AM (#24016725) Homepage Journal

        I think the word actually embodies western culture quite well. We take something, consume it, and throw it away. That's even true when it comes to music in some cases, as in with trashy pop that gets to number one one week and then is gone the next. Despite the fact that digital files are not technically 'consumed' (unless they have some kind of DRM that deletes them after a few days), IMO the the word is fairly accurate even in its economic and political context. Consumers are the ones that make use of all the goods and services that the market provides (ie anyone who isn't self sufficient).

        Personally I'd say the RIAA views its customers more as cattle to be slaughtered, and processed in such a way that no part is 'wasted'. Only they don't realise that in slaughtering every last cow they can right now, they are forgetting that they need to leave some behind to create future generations and further profits.

    • Re:At what point (Score:5, Insightful)

      by spidercoz (947220) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:06AM (#24016111) Journal
      When they can charge us for thinking about music
    • Re:At what point (Score:5, Insightful)

      by pitchpipe (708843) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:07AM (#24016141)
      Never. If your livelyhood was threatened by by changing global economic dynamics, at what point would you be satisfied by government intervention? Especially when that intervention will always be ineffective?

      Really what they are going to succeed in doing is continuing the decline of the United States as a global power relative to other countries through restrictive trade practices and strong arm tactics to the point where the U.S. will not be the preferred trading partner because of all of the baggage that comes with it.

      In essence, they are selling us down the river.
      • Re:At what point (Score:5, Informative)

        by ShibaInu (694434) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:29AM (#24016447)

        Well, except for the fact that the RIAA is controlled by four large multi-national firms. EMI is British, Universal is owned by Vivendi, a French company, the head of Warner music is Canadian and Sony BMG is about as multi-national as you'll find anywhere. If anything, the RIAA and the companies that control it are trying to do this everywhere. US politicians are going along for the ride, but so are governments all over the world.

        • Re:At what point (Score:5, Insightful)

          by sm62704 (957197) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:53AM (#24016817) Journal

          Really what they are going to succeed in doing is continuing the decline of the United States as a global power relative to other countries

          The sellout continues.

          Well, except for the fact that the RIAA is controlled by four large multi-national firms. EMI is British, Universal is owned by Vivendi, a French company, the head of Warner music is Canadian and Sony BMG is about as multi-national as you'll find anywhere

          Yet these foreigners have more access to "your" representatives than you do. WTF is the point of even going to the polls when our legislators are OWNED lock stock and barrel by foreigners?

          No lobbyist from any corporation whose shares are available to ANY foreigner should have any access whatever to "my" representatives. "My" representative doesn't represent me, he represents foreign rich people.

          And I'm supposed to respect the laws these bozos write? Sorry, bud, fuck your laws, I'll follow my conscience. The RIAA and its government stooges can go to hell. I'm no longer playing. Since I have no representataion, the only reason I see for respecting the law is their guns. The traitorous Democrats and Republicans have gotten the last vote they'll get from me until they swear off accepting contributions from my enemies. When we get respectable lawmakers writing respectable laws, I'll respect the law. Until then I shall not only ignore it, but I will encourage everyone else to as well.

          We fought for independance from foreign overlords (ironically we celebrate it this Friday), only to let them sneak in and steal our country.

          It's a sad day for America.

          • Re:At what point (Score:4, Informative)

            by dwarfking (95773) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @12:31PM (#24017393) Homepage

            The problem as I see it is the fact that they even can be owned, and that is because they are professional politicians instead of the original citizen-statesmen that was envisioned by the founding fathers.

            They act more like an aristocracy than a representative body, but because they are constantly on the re-election tread mill, money has great influence over them, and these types of organizations (i.e. RIAA/MPAA) have lots of money.

            It would seem, then, that a simple solution would be for the individual States to enact term limits. And this doesn't need to be a US Constitutional Amendment to limit Congress Critters as the 22nd Amendment limits the Presidency, because Congress are not Federal employees (which means they actually shouldn't get Federal pensions either). They are elected solely by their State, so a given State should be able to enact term limits that affect their own representation. Only the President and VP are nationally elected, thus the need for the 22nd Amendment.

            If you eliminate the permanent politician in Washington, then there wouldn't be as much need for the money chase and we might actually get better laws.

            Of course all the Congress Critters would scream bloody murder and pass all types of legislation to prevent term limits that would need to be challenged to the Supreme Court, but based on how they responded to Gore vs Bush, indicating all voting rules are the province of the State to decide, it would be an interesting fight.

            Pipe dreams, I know.

          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by ultranova (717540)

            Yet these foreigners have more access to "your" representatives than you do. WTF is the point of even going to the polls when our legislators are OWNED lock stock and barrel by foreigners?

            As a foreigner I assure you that I have no access whatsoever to your legislators, nor to my own for that matter. In fact it seems that the situation is essentially identical in all countries. That suggests to me that the RIAA are actually the covert intelligence operation of an invading alien force, sent here to cripple o

    • by jo42 (227475)

      Welcome The Money Grubbing Corporate Overlords. Resistance Is Futile.

    • The purpose of the RIAA is to maintain its usefulness to the member firms. There must always be progress, or at least the appearance that the association is making it worthwhile to be a member.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by sm62704 (957197)

      At what point is enough heroin to satisfy a heroin junkie? At what point is enough crack to satisfy a crackhead? At what point is enough money to satisfy a billionaire?

      There is no such thing as "enough" with any such addict.

  • by fictionpuss (1136565) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @10:55AM (#24015941)
    We know their business model is fatally flawed, but the legislation they've bought will still be hanging around for years to come.
    • by ivantheshifty (1245510) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:02AM (#24016059)
      That's exactly right, and why everything the **AA's do is so dangerous. The RIAA is an example of an industry group that knows its business model doesn't cut it, and rather than adapting to face advancing technology, it's instead desperately flailing to stymie progress and preserve itself for just a couple more years. But the rest of America will be grappling with the DMCA for decades. God help us all if ACTA gets enforced.
      • by uxbn_kuribo (1146975) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:11AM (#24016205)
        Not only that, but with every industry on the decline due to recession, the RIAA seeks to blame piracy for its downturn. Gee, guys, ever think that maybe poor people buy less albums? The way they talk, people have an obligation to support their industry. I swear, they're just as bad as the travel companies.
        • by uxbn_kuribo (1146975) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:15AM (#24016267)
          And for that matter, the bit about security officials searching mp3 players for illegal music? Let's not worry about the guys sneaking bombs into the terminal, let's worry about the guy with some Coldplay (ugh) mp3s! Furthermore, how can an airport offical determine what mp3s are legal or not? I mean, they could be freely distributed (like Jonathan Coulton's work) or legally downloaded. Hell, Youtube regularly removes "copyrighted" videos at the request of people, despite no copyright being violated, despite fair use, and even despite the claimant not owning the copyright at all. The *IAA will soon reach a point where everyone (not just us internet folk) knows that if they could form their own police force like the Gestapo, they would.
        • by whereiswaldo (459052) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @12:30PM (#24017391) Journal


          Just about every time I'm tempted to buy a movie, I think about how many times I've watched rent-and-burned movies. In all, I think I've watched two burned copies more than once. Even the movies I have actually bought just sit there and collect dust.

          Every time I'm tempted to buy a CD, I think about first finding a store that lets me listen before I buy, then thinking about spending at least an hour going through albums aimlessly as I have no good way to find what's related to things I already like. If I do find something good, I think about the blank CDR media tax here in Canada and say forget it - I'll get my money's worth out of that tax and just download my music. Besides, it's so much more convenient. I also think about all the CDs I had bought over the years and how much crap is on them. It's time to get my money's worth.

    • by z80kid (711852) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:45AM (#24016673)
      Everybody mentions that their business model is flawed, and that they need to change.


      But who is the "they" who are pushing this crap? They == the executives who control the current racket. And their "business model" basically boils down to "riding on the backs of the relatively few who actually produce something."

      "They" have to fight the future, because the future does not include most of them.

  • "In Soviet Russia, the government controls the commerce"
  • the pubs allow FBI to use business to spy on ALL Americans. Now, will the dems allow the business to spy on all Americans as well?
    • by ScentCone (795499)
      the pubs allow FBI to use business to spy on ALL Americans

      The FBI cannot do ANYTHING without the money that the congress specifically budgets for them, often at the program level. They operate under oversight by congressional committees. All of their funds, and the makeup of all of the committee chairs, as well as the entire legislative agenda in both houses, is under the direction of Democrats. Don't like it? Ask them why they DO like it, review it and don't complain, and write checks to continue it.
  • Hardly surprising (Score:5, Insightful)

    by SimonGhent (57578) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:05AM (#24016101)

    Well, it's fairly common practice to submit a huge list of "wants" whether your list is business requirements, suggestions for law makers or what you want for Christmas.

    Put a few obviously silly items on the list and the ones you really want probably look a bit more plausible. I in no way advocate what they are asking for, but the way they are asking could be considered pretty smart.

    • by Applekid (993327) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:09AM (#24016163)

      And if Congress weren't bought and sold by the MAFIAA, they'd get lumps of coals thrown at them.

      I never have advocated out-and-out piracy... you want an album to keep in your collection you should buy it instead of downloading or borrowing. But this is pretty much it for me. I fully support any effort to 100% undermine the funding for RIAA member companies. That way the sheer volume of cash they can throw around to bribe, er, "donate" to politicians is reduced so much that the fatcats won't budge for them any longer.

      • I never have advocated out-and-out piracy... you want an album to keep in your collection you should buy it instead of downloading or borrowing.

        Ummm, why? So that the only party who profits off the transaction can use the money to pass laws against you? I'd maybe feel a bit different if anyone other than the labels and maybe 20 big music acts was making money from selling albums. However, seeing as how most of the music's creators are being ripped off by the people who are supposedly representing them, why should I care? Seriously?

        If you don't like piracy, buy used. Support your local music store and keep money away from the labels at the same

    • Yes, but this is the kind of thing they really want:

      http://plexipages.com/gesta.jpg [plexipages.com]

  • Go ahead (Score:3, Insightful)

    by msgmonkey (599753) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:05AM (#24016103)

    Not that the US has some kind of monopoly on 'optical grade polycarbonate' but I'd love them to restrict access and see where it gets them.

    Hint: All fiber used for telco/datacomms infrastructure is made from glass.

    • Re:Go ahead (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:11AM (#24016201)

      They are talking about plastic for making CDs, not glass for making telco infrastructure.

      Keep in mind these people still think the future is in selling discs to people.

      • by msgmonkey (599753)

        They are talking about plastic for making CDs, not glass for making telco infrastructure.

        Keep in mind these people still think the future is in selling discs to people.

        That's crazy, for the simple fact that polycarbonate is normally opaque anyway, you dont need special "optical grade" for CD's thats why I thought they where talking of POF but I'm wrong there anyway because POF uses acrylic.

        Either way I'm sure you could find another substitute plastic, plus besides only a fool would think restricting the ability to make CD's would curtail piracy, the future is data sales thats why I thought "hmm, restricting infrastructure, how sly". It seems I under estimated how much th

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by jcknox (456591)

      Not that the US has some kind of monopoly on 'optical grade polycarbonate' but I'd love them to restrict access and see where it gets them.

      Hint: All fiber used for telco/datacomms infrastructure is made from glass.

      The concern is not for optical fiber, but for CD / DVD / BlueRay discs, which are optical grade polycarbonate.

  • A sane government that truly represented the rights of the people should not even consider legislation like this. Congress has been for sale to the highest bidder for some time now, so any semblance of democracy is thoroughly broken. (Can the average citizen exert the same level of influence as the strongest corporation? If not, you don't have democracy)

    I think that the time for radical change has come. Getting rid of congress and passing everything onto the people through referendum (some sort of yearly
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Shark (78448)

      Getting rid of congress and passing everything onto the people through referendum (some sort of yearly limit would be necessary for legislation) seems like a better choice to me at this point.

      I agree, let's hire Diebold to make sure that the process is fair. And Fox News to make sure the opinion of the masses is completely impartial.

      Though that was satire, I honestly can't say your idea would be worse than what's currently in place. Regardless, a purely democratic government would likely leave 'large minority' of its people quite oppressed. The US is(was?) a constitutional republic for that reason.

  • WTO may say no to the restricting part and slap the us like they did in the Online gambling case and this may end have even more withdrawing protection for U.S. trademarks or copyrights.

  • the printing press (Score:5, Interesting)

    by circletimessquare (444983) <circletimessquare AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:11AM (#24016193) Homepage Journal

    had some unintended consequences

    it made books cheap, leading to better educated commoners, leading to the creation of a middle class, leading to the idea of democracy and equality

    i'm obviously broadly glossing over the historical details, but the lesson is that the printing press allowed for the realization of a number of previously impossible and unforseen societal changes

    whatever the internet is going to do society in the realm of unintended consequences, one is sizing up pretty obvious:

    the invalidation of the concept of intellectual property

    intellectual property works when only a small number of players distribute data. it takes a lot to run a vinyl pressing plant, and easy to find and shut one down that doesn't play by the rules. but when every single person is a one man effortless data distribution factory, then getting everyone to play by the rules of the game becomes impossible to enforce

    such that there is no more game. the idea of intellectual property simply ceases to be a valid concept. if it gets out on the web, it stays there. and anything not on the web is given a strong incentive to get on there. witness the imbroglio over guns n roses chinese democracy album recently. once its out there, you can't take it back, and it is extremely easy and anonymous to get out there

    what can you enforce in such an environment? say the *AAssholes actually get their way and get all of their draconian laws passed. who cares?

    do they honestly believe anything will change? the technology will simply treat their laws like damage, and route around them. this is what the internet was made to do

    go for it *AAssholes, give the laws your best shot. why do you believe any legal structure will work to contain the internet? or, i guess the next step is: break the internet. destroy what makes the internet compelling and useful in order to preserve a dying business model

    heh, had to open my big mouth

    • by bmajik (96670)

      I'm afraid you might be right. I'm afraid because in our society, intellectual property is the only thing of true value. Not labor. Not Capital. Intellect.

      IP has worked, more or less, until now to give society a way to reward the judicious and novel application of intellect to move the world forward, even if it is in uneven bursts.

      A society who derives the majority of its benefits and progress from mere ideas would do well to see that the idea developers are fairly rewarded and can afford to comfortably

      • by LWATCDR (28044)

        Exactly. Take patents for example. Software patents are not reasonable or logical but many other types of patents are.
        Copyrights are another example. I admit that I am in the minority on slashdot because I do feel pirating is wrong, I feel it is immoral and should be illegal. I also feel that the RIAA is trying to take away people rights to protect their IP which I also find intolerable.
        IP IS valid as a concept and is important. The key is protecting IP without abusing everybody's rights.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Spy der Mann (805235)

          Please don't say IP. There is *NO SUCH THING* as intellectual "property". Musicians and content "producers" have the right to get a return of their investment. But after that return, they're no longer being "stolen" by pirates because they already got their money back.

          I'd recommend you to read The Pirate's Dilemma [thepiratesdilemma.com], and see how piracy is beneficial to EVERYONE. It's more about economics than morals. In fact, the U.S. progressed so fast because they "pirated" european patents and paid absolutely no royalties

      • ip laws never rewarded creators. it rewarded distributors. one hit musical wonders throughout the 70s and 80s signed away their rights for pennies, were given free rides on corporate jets for a few months, then utterly forgotten about. bands like the beatles and prince got to be powerful because they became popular enough over long enough of a time that they took on the rules of the distributors, and became part of the machinery. but the vast majority of musical creation was never rewarded in real sense that you mean

        so the idea ip rewarding creators is a nice idealistic selling point, but it never actually works that way. the rules of power favors the distributors, so they merely shade and juggle the legalese that the ip laws serve them instead of the creators

        this leads us to 2 conclusions:

        1. destroying ip doesn't actually impoverish creators
        2. creators can still tour- you can't distrubte a concert tour on the web. creators can still whore for advertising. creators can be sponsored by corporate masters to make corporate product. and creators can simply enjoy their fame. is money really the only thing that motivates people to create music?

        so its a better world without ip. its not like music will suddenly disappear. cheap opo like britney spears and justin timberlake won't even disappear: they'll simply be hired by corporations to produce product that is used for advertising, brand building, etc.

        the desire to create music is not dependent upon financial concerns. music predates ip law, duh. most kids pick up the guitar to impress chicks. now if you said making music means you could never seduce a woman ever again, then yeah, music is dead. otherwise, no ip law? no problem. full steam ahead

        • by bmajik (96670)

          IP laws pre-date the modern music industry, and IP is conceptually a much larger problem space than record sales and 1-hit wonders.

          The canonical IP problem is medicine. If a company spends 5 years and 10B USD developing a drug, each pill can be produced for 5c or so, but the medicine must sell for a much higher cost in order for its developer to be reasonably compensated.

          How do you solve this problem?

          1) Nationalize all medicine development [i.e. move the cost from per-pill to per-taxpayer]
          2) Provide distri

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      It's interesting that you chose books as one of your examples. They provide an excellent mirror to today's copyright problems.

      American colonists (and early American citizens) were huge consumers of pirated European books (often printed in Scotland). Part of the reason for Scottish supplies was that London printers had a gentlemen's agreement not to lower the wholesale price of books and this made early shipping owners unwilling to risk losing such expensive cargo for a minimal payoff. Scottish printers h

  • Doesn't the Bush administration and his Democratic eunuchs in Congress owe companies like AT&T big-time for all the illegal spying they've done on us in the last few years? Maybe they could call in a favor on this one.
  • Oh shit! They won't be sending any more blank CD's to my house in Ohio.
  • by tjstork (137384) <todd@bandrowsky.gmail@com> on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:15AM (#24016265) Homepage Journal

    It's pretty simple. I'm not giving these people one fricking dime and its not like songs are something that people absolutely can't live without. There's plenty of free stuff on the radio, I have plenty of songs I've paid for already... why do I need to continue to subsidize a subpar industry giving me all of this crap to begin with.

    You know, it never ceases to amaze me, that an industry that proclaims itself to be most on the side of the people, the most liberal, that rips any commercial interest of the right wing as morally wrong, has done more to subvert the rights of mankind in the digital age than any other industry.

    Next time Michael Moore or Oliver Stone or Spike Lee makes a film telling me how evil George Bush is for illegal wiretaps, perhaps we might ask them, what about all the raids, wiretaps and assaults on PCs born about by their industry. You can't benefit from digital surveillance and iron fisted prosecution of teenagers while proclaiming to be innocent of it.

    If I were President, I would pardon every single person that was ever arrested for the supposed crime of copyright violation, and i would reply to every law that congress passed at the industry's behest, with a signing statement declaring such law to be unconstitutional and a refusal to enforce.

    • by rajafarian (49150)

      It's pretty simple.

      It actually isn't that simple. When their sales go down more because everyone wants to not buy from them they are going to claim even more infringement and... Aaaargh, those fuckers!!!

    • by MBGMorden (803437)

      If I were President, ... i would reply to every law that congress passed at the industry's behest, with a signing statement declaring such law to be unconstitutional and a refusal to enforce.

      Actually, you wouldn't because the President (as long as you're talking about the US) doesn't have that power. A President can veto a bill once. It goes back to Congress to be voted on again. If it passes by a 2/3rds majority, then it becomes law whether the President wants it to or not. Only the Judicial Branch (ie, the Supreme Court) can invalidate a law by declaring it unconstitutional.

      • Actually, you wouldn't because the President (as long as you're talking about the US) doesn't have that power.

        The Constitution actually does not give the Supreme Court the power to declare a law unconstitutional. That power was actually asserted by a very early Supreme Court case (Madison vs Marbury) and for political reasons expedient to the time, the other branches of the government went along with it. In doing so, they established a precedent that works, partly because, the elected governments now hav

  • by intx13 (808988) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:16AM (#24016281) Homepage
    ...and know when to fold 'em. Surely somebody at the **AA must realize that the jig is up, the game is over, it was a nice (profitable) thing while it lasted, but simply pushing for more and more draconian laws is not going to bring back the age of the vinyl record - "piracy" is just too fast and easy. You just aren't going to make as much as you used to through media distribution anymore. Either find a different way to make money or settle for reduced profits.

    People will purchase media when obtaining that media is less costly than "pirating" it. You've got three ways to make that happen:
    1. Monetarily: make the music cost less in dollars than the pirated version. Obviously not posible.
    2. Punishment: make it more costly to be caught with pirated media. Tried this one, it doesn't work.
    3. Ease of use: make it easier/more pleasant to get and use purchased media than pirated media.

    The **AA is happy to keep pounding away at #2, suing en masse, requesting ridiculous measures like those suggested in TFA... but there must be somebody at the headquarters whose pondering #3.

    Of course maybe it's just that anybody with a sense for business has better things to do than work for the **AA.

  • by Hoplite3 (671379) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:21AM (#24016335)

    Here's a good one:
    "3. Provide that the presumption of ownership may be rebutted only if the defendant is able to provide concrete evidence to the contrary."

    Yeah, that's right. Claimants own whatever they claim unless the defendant proves otherwise. Oh, and don't put up a fight if they sue you for having copyrighted material because:

    "4. As a deterrent to groundless defenses, award plaintiffs full costs and fees for overcoming frivolous challenges to titles."

    I propose a modest fifth bullet point. Anyone with a copyright may punch those damned ordinaries not in the "creative class" in the stomach at any time, without fear of reprisal. Genius!

  • by Coopjust (872796) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:27AM (#24016403)
    gutting the parts of the DMCA that provides safe harbor to the ISPs

    This would destroy the free web as we know it. No site would be willing to accept user generated content (at least, no site in the United States) because there is no foolproof way to tell whether the person is uploading home movies or part of a summer blockbuster.
    That provision is absolutely necessary for the functioning of the web as-is. Any legislation that would try to remove it would be laughable.

    Mandatory copyright filters- good luck with that. More stuff will come in password encrypted rars (including filename, of course), nullifying any benefits of these things. Consumers would have to pay for these moronic devices, which would be expensive if they didn't botttleneck ever-growing connections.}

    And, as other posters have said, the United states is not the only country that makes optical disks.

    This is a poorly attempted legal solution to an age old technical problem...
  • The RIAA more and more resembles a senile old dictator who has fallen irrevocably into despotism. I'm sure that if they had the technology, they'd monitor people's THOUGHTS and charge a fee for everyone who so much as remembers what a song sounds like, and jail anyone who so much as hums a song under their breath; they'd have executed any orchestra that dared to perform the works of Mozzart, Bach, Beethoven, and so on.

    MEMO TO RIAA: Get into the 21st century, you old fucks! The more you try to clamp dow

  • How do you sleep at night, knowing that you've driven people into the ground, that some of them no longer have anything to lose and want to see you dead? The money must be nice, but what's your price for giving up the freedom to live among other people? Remember, your security detail has to have a perfect record, while the little guy you destroyed only has to get lucky one time.

    I am not - NOT! - calling for violence, but I'm continually surprised that no one has resorted to it. I think it's inevitable th

  • Presumption of guilt (Score:5, Informative)

    by Tweenk (1274968) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @11:50AM (#24016767)

    Interesting excepts:

    Section D.1 basically says that when you pirate something, they can confiscate anything they deem "related" to the infringement (all your PCs are belong to us).
    Section I.1 says that all optical disks must be approved by MPAA/RIAA thought police prior to pressing.
    Section J.6 requests that ISPs are guilty until proven innocent.
    Section J.10 says that MPAA/RIAA should be able to directly spy on your Internet use.
    Section K.1 implies that IP pirates are tied to terrorists and organized crime.

  • Important article (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Reziac (43301) * on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @12:01PM (#24016945) Homepage Journal

    If you haven't read TFA at http://www.spectrum.ieee.org/print/3673 [ieee.org] , kindly do so. It makes some pungent observations, frex this one, which pretty much says it all:

    "Copyright is being turned from a limited-term incentive designed to encourage creative artists to a broadly scoped transfer of wealth from the public to the private realm. As the industries that generate copyrighted materials seek control over not only their works but also the devices on which we watch, listen to, and remix them, copyright law is turning into technology regulation."

  • My Wishlist (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Aidtopia (667351) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @12:11PM (#24017081) Homepage Journal
    1. Creators and authors get to choose copyright protection OR technological protection measures, but not both. DRM is incompatible with copyright law. I'm happy to let you have both, IF your DRM scheme manages to respect Fair Use and expiration of copyright and doesn't invent any restrictions that aren't part of the copyright protections (e.g., geographic restrictions). Of course, that's impossible.
    2. Any work whose primary distribution is encumbered with DRM must place an unencumbered copy in escrow with the Library of Congress before any commercial distribution, along with a maintenance fee to off set the Library's expense.
    3. No copyright registration is required UNTIL commercial distribution of a work.
    4. Copyright expiration is dramatically shortened. Lifetime of author, 25 years from creation for a corporation, or 14 years from first commercial distribution. Protection may be renewed for a modest fee every 14 years, indefinitely. Disney can keep Steamboat Willie as long as they value it, but we get all the orphaned and abandoned works in the public domain.
    5. False use of DMCA take downs and lawsuits alleging infringement may be penalized by placed the work(s) in question into the public domain.
    • A Shorter List (Score:3, Interesting)

      by masdog (794316)

      1. Copyright remains with the author or creator. In the event that there is more than one author or creator acting as a group, each shall have a share of copyright but cannot enter into exclusive agreements without the approval of the other holders.

      2. Ownership of copyright cannot be transferred to a non-creator.

      3. Fair Use and format shifting are consumer rights, and unreasonable restrictions on these rights shall be prohibited./P

  • by Jimmy_B (129296) <slashdot@ j i mrandomh.org> on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @12:26PM (#24017311) Homepage

    It is immoral to pay for any CD which is published by an RIAA member. They use the money to corrupt our legislators, abuse our courts and ruin peoples' lives. On the other hand, copyright infringement is illegal, but not immoral; no one is harmed by it except for sleazy lawyers and businessmen.

    That's right: downloading music illegally is morally better than paying for it. Ten years ago, it was not so; for indie music, it is not so; but if you pay for major-label music now, then you are helping to ruin lives.

    The RIAA is doing everything they can to portray their struggle as one of morals vs. cheapness. It isn't, because they lost the moral high ground. The only remaining excuse for paying for major-label music is ignorance.

  • by Nomen Publicus (1150725) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @12:53PM (#24017719)
    The *AA is not the problem - they are the symptom. *AA doesn't produce anything, they are just the media private rent-a-cops.

    The real problems here are Sony etc who fund the *AA and set the agenda.

    *AA gets all the headlines and the hate, but the companies hiding behind them seem to get a free pass for some reason.

    How about always listing the *AA backers in any *AA story?

  • by unity100 (970058) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @01:28PM (#24018359) Homepage Journal
    s.

    up until now everything regarding internet ranging from major routers to domain name registration regulatory agency have been in united states, run by united states agencies and firms. everyone was content with it, with a few moaning voices on minor stuff.

    however if these faggots' sponsored bill passes, it will no longer be the case. no country will want to leave their connectivity to the world in a country which has a senate that is so easily made a bitch by some private interest profit groups, regardless of the excuses that are made and regardless of the pressure from their internal equivalents of riaa. national security interests and economic prospects of every country surpasses copyright shill rights.

    i can cite you a number of recent big profile cases in which such private interest pressure groups , and even international ones, have found their cases thrown out by local and national governments or courts. im sure there are more among you who can remember these, and other examples.

    result would be separate internets, one that is run by other sources, like u.n. or european union, or whichever local gathering of nations would create, and one that is run with corporate shills in america.

    i dont need to tell you how badly this would affect everything american on the web, economically. and change how things work.

  • Parties shall... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by gedhrel (241953) on Tuesday July 01, 2008 @03:04PM (#24020153)

    5. Provide for the availability of civil and injunctive relief against landlords that fail to reasonably exercise their ability to control the infringing conduct of their tenants.

    This is clearly targeting those pesky universities.

You will lose an important disk file.

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