[LINK] New lawsuit targets '21st century piratical bazaar'
Thu, 4 Oct 2001 13:47:38 +1000
> The record industry and Hollywood studios have joined forces to go
> after Music City, KaZaA and Grokster
Well, I do find it lots of fun watching the big guns of the music &
video world chase first Napster, and now its successors. I wish I had
the time to follow it in more detail, and understand more about how the
various incarnations of peer to peer file swapping systems are
progressing. The letter from the lawyers to the Recording Industry
Association of America
(http://www.fuckedcompany.com/extras/riaa_memo.cfm) about this is a fun
The actual result (as different from the intended result) of the music
companies' actions is that by a very, very expensive process involving
courts and paying gazillions to lawyers they are writing the
'requirements document' for a peer-to-peer file swapping system that
will be technically robust and administratively untouchable.
The process is something like this:
1. Someone - e.g. Napster - writes some software
2. The music industry takes them to court, and wins. The fact that
Napster had a central file server makes it easier for the music industry
heavyweights to win.
3. Someone - e.g. FastTrack - writes some newer software, without that
4. The music industry takes them to court. They may win. The fact that
FastTrack is an identifiable company that licenses its code to MusicCity
for Morpheus and to Grockster, is a likely weakness.
5. Someone will write some newer software that doesn't have this
We're seeing maybe the world's slowest and most expensive ever system
development - where each bug is identified via a lawsuit, then new
systems are built without that bug. In this case the bugs are
administrative / ownership problems rather than coding problems, but the
process is the same.
Presumably the end result years from now will be some sort of super
robust peer-to-peer file sharing system where the underlying code is
owned by no-one and developed by the community.
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