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August 14, 2005

House Cmte - DRM

I will never understand why non-technical people are placed in postitions where they must evaluate technical phenomenon. Last week C-Span aired a session where members of P2P United answered various Senators who were tasked with policing the P2P companies in the aftermath of the Supreme Court ruling on Grokster. It was pretty amusing to listen to politicians who were obviously not very imformed on P2P or the decision.

Essentially, they were acting as mouthpieces for the RIAA and MPAA. On average, each senator was roughly 55-60 years old. Most of the representatives have never used high speed internet, let alone P2P software. So what were they doing asking questions of a technical nature? It's beyond my comprehension.

Paraphrasing the conversation - Representative from California, "What are you guys doing to stop and monitor porn?" Response from P2P united chair, "Same thing we've always done. It's very difficult for us to monitor every node of our network and sniff each indiviidual packet, as we have millions of customers. Not a very cost effective solution."

Representative retort, "Surely you guys can filter your network, I find it hard to believe that it's not feasible. Our children are at risk. What are you doing about piracy?" Mr. Adam Eisgrau Executive Director, P2P United response, "I assure you that filtering isn't feasible. Regarding DRM, I propose that we adopt a model of creative commons licensing by which the artist willingly shares the material..."

Naturally this is concept fell upon deaf ears. The representative bared their teeth and threatened group to change their ways or there would be severe repercussions. It seems that the politicians believe that the parents shouldn't raise their own children. Why should technologists be saddled with this responsibility too. If you do not want your child to view porn keep monitor there online activities. Actually, there are dozens of ways to accomplish this(ie web proxies, and other third-party software tools.)

Senate to Examine MGM vs. Grokster Ramifications

Another article of note is shown below.

House Eyes DRM Interoperability


Posted by AG at August 14, 2005 8:13 AM