Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system


Forgot your password?
Music Media Government The Courts News Your Rights Online

New RIAA File-swapping Suits Target Students 287

Fletcher writes "The Recording Industry Association of America filed another round of lawsuits against alleged file-swappers, including students on 13 university campuses. The 750 suits come just a few days after Internet researchers released a study that found peer-to-peer traffic had remained constant or risen up to the early days of 2004, despite the pressure of recording industry lawsuits."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

New RIAA File-swapping Suits Target Students

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:32AM (#10671821)
    I've been swapping a lot of Japanese "dating sims" in order to improve my social skills with chicks - am I in any danger of being sued, or is this ONLY for music? What about games, bishoujo games in particular?

    • by Anonymous Coward
      If they can't pronounce what you're swapping, they can't sue you. Unless there is a Japaneese equivelent of the RIAA. Doubt it......
  • Not news any more. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by eddy ( 18759 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:35AM (#10671836) Homepage Journal

    99% of the whole point of these lawsuits is to get filesharing fearmongering into the news where it can "deter" and influence politicians.

    Personally, I don't feel like it's newsworthy any more, and I don't see any reason to actively help RIAA in their fear-spreading mission.

    • by turnstyle ( 588788 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @10:28AM (#10672071) Homepage
      "99% of the whole point of these lawsuits is to get filesharing fearmongering into the news where it can "deter" and influence politicians."

      Well, now that you've commented on it, you're complicit in that too... ;)

      Yes, it is absolutely correct that the point of the lawsuits is to get publicity for this issue. And it is correct that Slashdot is participating in that process.

      However it is also worth differentiating between "filesharing" and "unauthorized filesharing."

      These suits (as opposed to the Napster, Grokster, etc.) are about unauthorized filesharing, and not the technology itself.

      Indeed, those that constantly act as apologists for unauthorized filesharing are just as guilty as *IAA for endangering an emerging technology.

  • Who's being sued? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by leav ( 797254 ) <leavoa AT gmail DOT com> on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:36AM (#10671839) Journal
    Who's gonna take the heat for the file swapping? the students or the campus/university?

    this is an important question because one could say that the universities allowed them to swap files by not-not-allowing (:p) and so the students could use this in there defense (however crooked and twisted a defense it is...).
    • > Who's gonna take the heat for the file swapping? the students
      > or the campus/university

      As the RIAA are scumsucking filth, they'll attack those with the most to lose from a loss to their "alleged" lawsuit, and coerce thousands in settlement from them.
    • The RIAA really changed the climate a lot..

      Nowadays I'd always see these little posters around the computer labs in uni reminding users that downloading pirated stuff is illegal and that we can be jailed for it yadda yadda..

      Needless to say every machine is now firewalled like nuts now.

      Way to go RIAA :(
    • It's probably irrelevant.

      The RIAA or any plaintiff in a civil action is likely to go after wherever the big money is. In this case, it's the university, not the starving students.

      They are probably banking on a win or a painful settlement that means other universities will 'get the message' (whatever that is) and clamp down on students in turn.
    • The RIAA tried such an argument vs p2p networks, fortunately the judge strongly disagreed.

      You wouldn't either want to blame the goverment for crimes which they could prevent or reduce if they only imposed complete surveillance on everybody, would you ?

      I, for one, hope they will not even try blaming it on the universities and am confident they won't try, because it would support the RIAA's stance to require more surveillance and control on neutral technologies like the networks in general(internet, p2p, un
  • by dreadfire ( 781564 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:36AM (#10671841) Homepage
    Not to say that artists don't deserve money for their work, but again they are doing it the wrong way.

    For one, you can't stop it by going after people that don't have enough money to pay for cds. CDs printing costs are in like the cents (30-70 cents) to make the CD ready for packaging.

    They charged 15 dollars for most. Only give the artist maybe 70cents-1 dollar for each record sold. If they ultimately actually lowered the price to a more convient number maybe people will by them.

    Or even maybe have them actually good music to purchase. Going after college students who have enough to worry about is a horrible way to get support. Its a negative campaign that'll end up hurting them.

    • Only give the artist maybe 70cents-1 dollar for each record sold.

      Its more like 6 cents if they're lucky, minus "expenses" that the RIAA charges them, like 25% for packaging. And thats not even considering how the recording industry cooks their books to screw people out of the rest. Artists barely see a dime from cd sales, their money is made from concerts.
    • by nkh ( 750837 ) <.exochicken. .at.> on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:47AM (#10671888) Journal
      I love how DVDs' prices are decreasing and will one day be lower than audio CDs' prices. How is it possible for such an old technology to be so expensive? (I know the answer but I'd really like their point of view...)
      • by justforaday ( 560408 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @10:30AM (#10672081)
        This reminds me of something I saw someone say on the news a few years ago. It was when the labels began making a stink about filesharing (2001-2002ish). Some guy they were interviewing posed the question "Why should I spend 18 dollars to get the soundtrack to a movie, when I can buy the DVD of the movie itself for 15?"
        • because the MPAA and studio made the bulk of money from the movie, the soundtrack wasn't paid for that way, I am sure there were royalties paid, but nothing like what the studio got. The DVD is just icing on the cake for them.
          • the MPAA and studio made the bulk of money from the movie, the soundtrack wasn't paid for that way, I am sure there were royalties paid, but nothing like what the studio got. The DVD is just icing on the cake for them.

            However, almost all soundtracks are just compilations of already published songs. So, soundtracks are pretty much just icing on the cake for the RIAA too.

            The movie's score, which usually is not released on CD is another thing. I haven't looked into how that is paid for, but I bet it is si
      • funny you mention that... shortly before dvd's became real mainstream, we were walking around target or walmart or something and one thing caught my attention. some vhs movies came with 2 tapes, one with the movie, the other with "special features" (american beauty was like this). those sold at the same price as regular 1-tape videos (about $15). you buy a cd with 2 discs and depending on the store and album, it'll cost you anywhere from $20-30, nearly twice the cost of a single disc album. what's up wi
        • Similarly, people will pay 50 cents, up to sometimes even several dollars, for a 'fresh' newspaper off the news-stand.

          And yet, the same people bundle big sheaths of newsprint up and then pay someone to haul it away.

          What's up with that? Didn't the pages of paper cost the same, no matter what the value of the content printed on them??
          • most people who buy newpapers throw them out. those that recycle generally do it through their town or throw it in a recycling bin at a college or office building or something. so any recycling costs are covered by the company or taxes.

            but newspapers are generally not expensive, while cd's and movies are (in comparison to what it costs to make them).
      • by sgant ( 178166 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @11:22AM (#10672405) Homepage Journal
        Look at the average DVD, it's what...about 20 bucks give or take a few bucks plus or minus. OK, some are 30 bucks but most are around the 20-24 dollar point.

        Ok...let's take an average hollywood movie that cost today around 50 million give or take to produce. Some cost upwards to 100 million. And that's just from producing the movie itself, not including the marketing for it. Yet the DVD, where they make a ton of cash from, costs only 20 bucks when it hits the stores. 20 bucks.

        The RIAA claim that the CD's cost so much because they spend so much on the artists, the promotion, the artwork etc etc so the price point is 17 bucks for a CD with 72 minute of music. Now I KNOW a music CD doesn't cost 50 million dollars to produce and market. No way NEAR that amount.

        This is just blatent money-grubbing bastardship in it's prime. I how can they possibly defend themselves with this?
      • "I love how DVDs' prices are decreasing and will one day be lower than audio CDs' prices. How is it possible for such an old technology to be so expensive? (I know the answer but I'd really like their point of view...)"

        The average price of a CD is down to $13.29 []. That's a historic low, and the price drop is accelerating. DVDs are typically priced at $19 or $20, so DVD prices have a long way to go before they meet CD prices.

        The "old technology" involved in a CD -- the pressing -- is one of the less s

    • Its a negative campaign that'll end up hurting them.

      Yeah really, if nothing else it's raising a whole new generation to hate and loathe the RIAA. I know when I was a kid I'd never even heard of the RIAA except, maybe, when Al Gore's wife (you know, Tipper) was trying to get music censored-- then I seem to recall the RIAA actually being out against that (hence the "explicit lyrics" labels). But todays young adults? I don't see them having any love for the RIAA.

      So.. way to go guys, keep it up! Anothe

    • This is going to come off as flamebait, but that logic taken to absurdity boils down to: rape victims shouldn't file civil suits against rapists that couldn't afford hookers, or that victims of carjacking shouldn't file suit against those who carjack them, because the carjacker couldn't afford their car.

      Even if it was specifically targeting people who couldn't afford cds, they are noncustomers benefiting (arguably with most major label crap) from copyrighted works without paying. Lower prices don't nece
      • You're making the common mistake of comparing victimless crime to victim crime. Granted, if I download a CD rather than buying it the RIAA doesn't get my money, but if it's a CD I wouldn't have bought, no one has lost anything. Whereas, in your carjacking example, the victim has definitely lost something, whether the thief would have otherwise bought the car or not.
        • If you wouldnt have bought it, what entitles to download it? You are enjoying the product, therefor you place some value on it and the product is offered to you at a price, so you have three legal options: Buy it, dont buy it, or listen to it on the radio. Heres a thought: take a laptop and a scanner to a bookstore and copy a book. See if the manager of that store will accept the "Im not going to buy it, so you arent loosing a sale" arguement.
          • Amen.

            Man, the Slashdot crowd here just doesn't get it.

            You guys should be cheering ON the RIAA for going after illegal filesharers and not going after the P2P networks anymore so you can still use them for your Linux .iso files or whatever the hell people use P2P for other than piracy.

            But instead, the Slashdot mentality is that copyright infringement is nothing wrong and that people who do it are heros fighting against The Man (the RIAA.)

            Why is this? I think it's because most Slashdotters are the ones o
            • *Ahem* (Score:3, Interesting)

              by trezor ( 555230 )

              Nevermind that copyright was a priviledge granted on the condition that it should eventually, after a limited time benifit society and culture by release into the public domain. With the new de-facto perputual copyright, the grounds on which the priviledge was granted is gone. So is my respect for copyright.

              If you have any difficulty comprehending this simple connection, well I'll bother you again some time later.

    • CDs printing costs are in like the cents (30-70 cents) to make the CD ready for packaging. They charged 15 dollars for most.

      You're missing the point. The value (and thus the cost it can be sold at) of a CD is not in manufacturing it - would you pay 30-70 cents for a manufactured and packaged blank CD? The value comes from the content, that is the music from the artists' time, creative efforts, innovation, etc. So when you are paying $15 for a CD (or whatever) that was manufactured for 30-70cents (or 6cent

      • Value (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Safety Cap ( 253500 )
        The "value" in the Music companies sending payola to radio stations that I don't listen to, screwing the artist out of easily 90% of the cost of the CD, and then whining when their profit margin is "threatened"?

        Actually, I need to thank the RIAA, and---of course---ClearChannel. By promoting only mainstream music (Mindless "Pop-40," Mainstream "Alternative," thug-only "Rap," catch-all "Jazz," Balding "Rock," and baroque-only "Classical") I pretty much only listen to indie bands these days. I only listen to

    • Not to say that artists don't deserve money for their work,

      Well, yes, to say that rock stars don't deserve money for their work. They don't. Most of what the 'produce' is just stolen from lesser-known albums of many years ago. Plus most rock stars are assholes. And far, far overpaid. (Seen Rod Stewart's huge mansion in last month's Architectural Digest?)

      For one, you can't stop it by going after people that don't have enough money to pay for cds.... If they ultimately actually lowered the price
    • by serutan ( 259622 ) <snoopdoug AT geekazon DOT com> on Saturday October 30, 2004 @12:51PM (#10673039) Homepage
      They charged 15 dollars for most. Only give the artist maybe 70cents-1 dollar for each record sold.

      I don't mind repeating this like a broken record. Eventually everybody will get it. Musicians usually get paid NOTHING for CD sales. Yes, by contract they get a small percentage, but that same contract also lets the record company first deduct all expenses of manufacturing, advertising, distribution, etc, etc, which usually leaves a ZERO net payment. For a more detailed explanation of how this works, read this article by Janis Ian [], who has recorded more than 25 albums over nearly 40 years, and has yet to see a record company check with a plus sign on it.

      The short version is: Musicians make money primarily from live performances, same as they did for centuries before recording technology was invented. What CD sales do for them is give them exposure, which generates audiences for concerts. They get the same exposure whether you buy a CD, download it, listen to it on the radio or find it lying on the sidewalk. Paying for the CD does not help the musician.

      Record companies, on the other hand, make nearly ALL their money from CD sales. They justify all their business practices because they lose money on the songs that don't sell well enough to cover expenses. Essentially record companies are venture capitalists who seize all profits from a company until the startup expenses are covered, and then continue to get most of the profits after that.

      Would you finance your startup like that? I didn't think so.
  • by trifish ( 826353 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:38AM (#10671849)
    We need to start using only P2P software that allows connecting through anonymous proxies. Those proxies should of course be located in countries that are known to be unwilling to collaborate with US/European authorities. It would make P2P much slower but should put these lawsuits to an end.
    • The biggest problem now is: Is there enough anonymous proxies in these countries to handle the P2P traffic?
      • no, the biggest problem is 5the **AA making their own proxies which log everything, then they can see every file oyu download or upload
        • Can you imagine a US proxy physically located in, say, North Korea? BTW, one can easily verify that a proxy is really located in a country that does not collaborate with US/European authorities by using tools to traceroute the IP of the proxy.
    • by Usagi_yo ( 648836 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @10:17AM (#10672030)
      Duel Servers with an alogorithm on the client that determines what portion and split of the bytes to send to you -- even with moderate encyption, it still looks like random data to network sniffers.

      Server A sends random encrypted bytes from the material requested and Server B fills in the blanks. Sent non-sequentially or out of play order and they'll have a tough time figuring out what the hell is being downloaded.

      • Duel Servers
        Raymond Burr would be estatic!
      • You're addressing the problem of an attacker (the RIAA or their agents) finding you by looking at your network traffic. That's not what they're doing. They are finding nodes that offer files. The problem for the non-lame P2Per is that their node must tell good guys that they have lots of files and must tell bad guys that they have no files. The difficulty is that you can't tell the good guys from the bad guys on the network. One solution is to use private overlay networks, although the recent Finnish

    • Jeez, hate to sound like an old-timer here, but there is no way you'll get caught sharing files if you take your iPod to your neighbor's dorm room.

      Hell, they probably have some original CDs you might want to rip tracks from. Not to mention the library, which probably has thousands of CDs available (my public library sure does). Ya, I know it's illegal, but chances are, no one else is using that CD's track at the moment.

      I mean, sure, centralized P2P is convenient, but a lawsuit is pretty inconvenient. G
  • It's Just (Score:4, Insightful)

    by haX0rsaw ( 687063 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:38AM (#10671853)
    Wrong! No matter how you try to spin it, trading copyrighted material over the internet is against the law. Don't like it? Change the LAW.
    • Re:It's Just (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      "wrong" does not mean "illegal", idiot. One of the best ways to change the law is for large numbers of people to break it.

      Personally, I see nothing wrong with sharing information (I think it is wrong to claim to be the author of the information if you're not - i.e. plagiarise), but copyright is just government-supported censorship.

      • but most file swappers,I'll put myself on a limb here; would not even know what that means.

        Most file swappers are just interested in getting something quick and free, not any social cause.
      • Copyright is not censorship, it's a short term government supported monopoly. It's meant to stop people from publishing works you created without giving you the creator something of value. To give the creator control over his or her works for a period of time.

        The problem is that copying is so easy to do now, and that organizations like the RIAA and MPAA have manipulated current copyright law to favor the big guys. That doesn't mean you throw out the whole copyright concept, just bring it back under reas
    • by arose ( 644256 )
      Dear haX0rsaw, "changing the law to allow trading copyrighted material over the internet without permission" is a copyprotection circumvention method, you are not allowed to tell others about it. The RIAA
    • No matter how you try to spin it, trading copyrighted material over the internet is against the law.

      Gee, I think you'd better tell the Free Software Foundation that. Oh, and the Grateful Dead. And Phish. And IBM. And Pearl Jam. And the Cowboy Junkies. And They Might Be Giants. And Novell. And the Butthole Surfers. And Hank Williams III. And Red Hat. And Fugazi. And Little Feat. And Debian. And Gov't Mule. And Charlie Hunter. And And Ween. And Primus. And...y'know what? I
  • Go RIAA... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Mad_Rain ( 674268 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:40AM (#10671861) Journal
    Go RIAA! Way to sue some people who are unlikely to be able to defend themselves. You truly have a gigantic collective business mind.

    Seriously, when will this business model of suing some of your most interested customers cease? When the weather report in Hell changes?
  • by KublaiKhan ( 522918 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:42AM (#10671869) Homepage Journal
    .....who not only cannot afford to fight back, but can't really afford to pay their fines in the first place. Since these people are students, it's not as if they can hire Johnny Cochran or someone to defend them...this, I dare say, makes the RIAA's number of 'sucessful suits' more effective, as more of them are settled out of court.

    It really is kind of like the schoolyard bully shaking down the smaller kids for their lunch money. Why does the RIAA exist these days, anyway? I haven't heard a single thing about what they've done other than file lawsuits....
    • I haven't heard a single thing about what they've done other than file lawsuits....
      You missed the /. stories about them getting their^H^H^H^H^HUtah's Senator Orim Hatch to try to make laws?
    • .....who not only cannot afford to fight back, but can't really afford to pay their fines in the first place.

      But, if they were anything like me in College, they are just the kind of people TO fight back, even without money. If I were sued back then I would have gone to court, no lawyer, mind you, and made sure to call all the TV stations on my way out the door. I would have brought a laptop into court with a perl script continuously copying a single song over and over again as fast as possible, and onc
  • by Prototerm ( 762512 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:43AM (#10671873)
    Those Colleges and Universities that haven't agreed to pay tribute to the RIAA by forcing all students to participate in things like the new Napster (participate = include the fee in the student's tuition) will be "strongly urged" to do so at the point of the RIAA's legal gun.

    Oh, well, at least it's a good education in the way the outside world "works".
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:49AM (#10671896)
    Good model to get more people buying music. Pissed me off so much I haven't bought a cd in years.

    And I will not till they stop this BS. Remember all these losers back in the 60's and 70's I'm sure they copied there buddies music if they liked it.

    It's the same shit.

    The way to stop this crap is boycott music period. Listen to the radio if you must. A one year boycott and they will crumble like a cracker in a vise.

    What's the difference if you get it off the net or get it off FM? I'm sure if they like the music they'll go and buy it to support the band so they can make more for them to enjoy.
  • Current IP List? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jeffkjo1 ( 663413 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @09:53AM (#10671920) Homepage
    Is there a current, up-to-date list of the sued IP addresses? The EFF's doesn't seem to have been updated anytime recently.
  • They can't stop it (Score:2, Insightful)

    by ( 463614 )
    This is like the proverbial little dutch boy trying to stop a dike collapse by sticking his finger in the hole of the breach.

    You cant stop information freedom, RIAA. The genie IS out of the bottle.
    • The boy actually *did* prevent the dike from collapsing. The story is about how the boy's courage and endurance saved the town.

    • It always makes me laugh when someone shouts about "information freedom", because privacy is one of the most protected things in a civilised nation, and yet all it essentially is is information. Information doesnt want to be free - its not sentient, some people want certain information to be free.
  • This makes a whole lot of sense if you think about it. They want to take the money from the people who can least afford it cause they can only afford to buy so many cds a year compared to someone who is out of college and has a job. This is like pro-active gestapo marketing...take all the money you think your customers should have bought. I mean these kids waste all their money on hundreds of dollars worth of books a semester and tens of thousands of dollars on tuition, room and board...they really need to
  • Branding (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ( 816752 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @10:06AM (#10671977) Homepage
    Major corporations attempt to imprint branding on us when we're young so that we'll be loyal to them later in life because we'll view those brand as canonical.

    What the RIAA is doing here is cementing P2P as the way to get music. They think they're creating negative associations with P2P, but what they're really doing is creatin negative associations with the RIAA. It's basic psychology. We hate being told what we can't do by large oppressive corporations, and it only makes us want it more.

    "There is no such thing as bad publicity." But what they don't realize is that this is publicity for P2P, not publicity for the RIAA.
  • by iONiUM ( 530420 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @10:10AM (#10671999) Journal
    Good work RIAA. Keep pissing off and targeting the students today. All your doing is devising your demise in the future.

    The university students today will be in the work force in the next few years, and then the main force of the work world not long after, as the baby boomers are getting all to be seniors.

    So good work. Keep pissing us off. Keep targeting us. Your end will be tragic, except you can go fuck yourselves because nobody will care.
  • by Anita Coney ( 648748 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @10:25AM (#10672052) Homepage
    The RIAA says that it's only going after people sharing 1000 or more files. Most people probably only use, at the very most, five BitTorrent streams at once. Let's assume that each instance of BitTorrent is a CD with 20 songs. That's at best comes to a user sharing 100 songs at a time, well below the RIAA's threshold.

    Will the RIAA change the number of songs shared before legal action is taken or will BitTorrent users get a free ride?

    • Will the RIAA change the number of songs shared before legal action is taken or will BitTorrent users get a free ride?

      since BitTorrent isn't a huge central network it's quite likely IMO that Torrent users are mostly safe.

      It's much easier to track copyright violations on networks like Kazaa than monitoring some websites and the irc for torrents.

      But even if the RIAA manages to monitor the entire net some day they'll still have to deal with offline trading. It's so convenient today to copy some friends Mus
      • All the RIAA would have to do is set up its own styled website and then start tracking IP addresses.

        You're right about off-line sharing, though. Portable hard drives are getting cheap and flash drives are getting larger.

        • sure, the RIAA could set up such a site. They could as well look at the torrents at Since suprnova is extremely popular it's quite likely that they'll do that in the near future. However, if I go to a irc fan channel of a tv show and download the latest episode I'm pretty safe, because there are thousands of places like this (offering different torrents). So the RIAA guys have to be at the same place at the right time. If I do the same thing via Kazaa they just have to search for the name of
      • "since BitTorrent isn't a huge central network it's quite likely IMO that Torrent users are mostly safe."

        I disagree. The tracker makes no attempt to conceal your IP address. All the RIAA (or MPAA) needs to do is grab a bunch of .torrents and they can get a list of IPs from the tracker.

        The strengths of bittorrent are that a) it has substantial legitimate uses (all those Linux ISOs, etc) and b) you don't have to tell anyone about your tracker.

        I wouldn't feel safe and secure using suprnova though. Well, not
      • It's so convenient today to copy some friends Music Collection onto mobile storage. Thousands of *new* songs transfered within minutes. And there's nothing the RIAA can do about it.

        What the RIAA plans to do about it is to pass a law requiring all audio playback devices to have a chip that detects a watermark in the audio file. The chip will have a unique number embedded into it. The first time that the audio playback device is used, it will have to be connected to a PC that has an internet connecti
    • Hey, you know if they would just let us know this information up front (1000 song limit) we can build it into the sharing service! By checking the available sorces every once in a while, identical hashes can be "distributed" so that you are never seen as offereing more than 999 of you files at any given time. It's all still there, just more efficient. That's what the internet is all about, right?

      Oh, btw, thanks for eveyone who is sharing tracks from the Peter Paul and Mommy CD on eMule. We acidentally p
    • Might want to rethink that. Sharing a 10 meg file is the equivilent of sharing 1000 10K files, so you still aren't safe.
  • P2P Usage Truths (Score:3, Insightful)

    by nurb432 ( 527695 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @10:49AM (#10672195) Homepage Journal
    That storying is trying to 'hint' that all P2P traffic is for 'piracy'.

    P2P is agnostic.. its a concept, not a action... a more accurate study would be the USE of the P2P networks they are 'surveying'.

    Just spreading more half truths and misconceptions...

    I know personally my P2P usage has gone WAY up in 2004, I now get most of my BSD ( and related ) ISO's via torrents now.. Last I heard that's legal traffic.
  • by ControlFreal ( 661231 ) * <<ten.reobgreb> <ta> <kein>> on Saturday October 30, 2004 @10:55AM (#10672232) Journal

    Get your copy here []. It's an onion-routing network, and open mix-net if you like. It protects your anonimity by using a number of proxies to channel the data, and encrypting the data such that one always knows only the next hop to send it to.

    In contrast to, e.g., Ants or MUTE, finding your data scales as log(N) (N: number of nodes in the net), whereas Ants and MUTE scale as N^2. And in contrast to Freenet and friends, this actually works.

    Now, you can already just put all your music files in the eepsite/docroot folder of your install, and post your key on forum.i2p. That's enough for anonymous sharing.

    Even better: A BitTorrent system that works completely within I2P is in the works ;)

    • I wish i could figure out how to publish a site though :). I bugged them to put in the GUI and the current GUI is extremely good. I think they're planning to continue their commitment to usability by working on 'MyI2P' which will be a easy to use GUI that will allow someone to put up their sites easily.

      The BitTorrent system on I2P will only be publisher anonymous though, which is still good/necessary as the BT system seems to be particularly vunerable via the trackers. (Trackers are open to being attacke
  • I'm getting so tired of this kinda stuff by the RIAA. Maybe they could deter copyright-infringers by actually providing a comparable service. And not iTunes selling tracks for USD$0.99. I mean seriously. This seems like a ploy for the RIAA to make more money than with CDs. Now they've dispensed with any physical material, any shipping and distribution - AND they charge the same amount for a CD. Except buying from iTunes versus a regular CD I am limited to where and how I can play it. And the quality is wors
    • Perhaps you should take a look at magnatune []
      Album prices start at $5, and you can pay up to $18, knowing that 50% of the sale price will go directly to the artist. You can get the music in any form, from mp3 to ogg to flac, and even the perfect quality wav! Best of all, once you've paid for the music, you can re-download it whenever you like! I've bought some albums myself, and while they may not have the artists you'll see on MTV (no big loss there), they've got some pretty good stuff available. They've e
  • Good (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Tim C ( 15259 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @11:27AM (#10672441)
    They targetted the apps, and there was an outcry here - "The tool has legitimate uses! Go after the users who misuse it!".

    They targetted the companies/people producing the apps, and there was outcry here - "The tool has legitimate uses! Go after the users who misuse it!".

    Now, they're targetting the users who misuse it - and yet still there is outcry here. How is this a YRO issue? You have no right to distribute copyrighted works without the copyright holder's permission. That's partly why the GPL exists, to grant you those rights.

    Don't like it? Work to change it. But don't admonish the RIAA for upholding their rights, while cheering on others when they go after GPL violators.
    • Re:Good (Score:3, Insightful)

      by 0123456 ( 636235 )
      "Don't like it? Work to change it"

      There are two ways to change a law: either buy the people who make the laws, or break the laws until they're impossible to enforce. The former is not an option, since the RIAA and MPAA have far more money than the average college student, so mass civil disobedience is the only other option.

      If Americans had listened to people like you in the 30s, they would still be unable to legally drink beer: Prohibition wasn't ended because the law-makers had a change of heart, but bec
    • Wrong.... (Score:2, Informative)

      by Belial6 ( 794905 )
      Distribution of music without the authors permission is common and legal. It is called mandatory licensing. Radio stations do not have to ask permission to distribute music. Anyone know what the per play cost is for a radio station?
    • "Don't like it? Work to change it."

      Civil disobedience.

  • by jwilcox154 ( 469038 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @11:43AM (#10672555) Homepage Journal
    There are several sites that carry a wide variety of music from independant artists.

    There's [], Musician MP3 [], Sound Click [], Vitaminic [], CNet Music [], and even [], Just to name a few. There's a bunch of other sites to get music from independant artists so there is no need to even use P2P to share RIAA music let alone purchase it.

    This would be the proper way to protest the RIAA. If everyone did this, they would see their profits fall and at the same time, see that file swapping is way down, then they would have no choice but to confirm that they're really the ones to blame for the decreased sales. The biggest challenge is trying to get people that love the "Cookie Cutter Boy/Girl Bands" to switch over.
  • by MunchMunch ( 670504 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @12:33PM (#10672901) Homepage
    What I really don't understand is how they can continue to file these lawsuits when their own rationale for filing them doesn't even hold up anymore.

    They used to simply use the catch-22 situation, where if file sharing went up and sales went down after they filed lawsuits they simply said to themselves, "This proves we need to file more lawsuits! What we're doing just isn't enough!" and if file sharing went down (according to now discredited figures, since people were just moving off of Kazaa) and sales went down, they'd say "It works! Now let's keep up the good fight to improve those sales!"

    Well, this last period, file sharing has gone up and sales have also gone up. There just isn't any way to justify lawsuits using this information, according to the RIAA's own spurious justifications.

    Except to say, that is, that knowing the impending backlash was coming, the RIAA probably steeled themselves against any public pressure--and along with it rationality-- before they began to file lawsuits. Looking at Cary Sherman's statements, for instance, its hard not to notice he never actually addresses the efficacy or goals of the lawsuits. He just parrots "We are within our rights. We can't stand by while thieves are stealing our music. Artists need to be paid," and similar argumentively disconnected soundbites.

    Well, news flash, RIAA--copyright is pragmatic. You enforce it to increase sales, not for moral (that is, constitutionally unfounded) rationales. You may have the right but how about a reason? How exactly can you justify enforcing it to a cane-flogging-for-jaywalking extremity, infuriating your customers, while when it is rising your sales are also rising?

  • by Catamaran ( 106796 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @01:04PM (#10673153)
    Robin Hood was the hero. When did our society stop caring about the poor and the oppressed and become so reverent of wealth and power?
  • 1. What proportion of file sharers are students? What proportion of these lawsuits are against students? Is there a massive mis-match between these two figures? I'm only worried if the answer is "Yes".

    2. Could /. please decide whether the RIAA produces rubbish, or not? If it is, why does everyone keep downloading it?

    3. Music is not essential to your existance. If you can't afford it, don't buy it, it won't kill you. In particular, if both sales and piracy drop, maybe they'll finally have to accept they'r
    • 4b. Is anyone actually claiming these people have not been illegally copying music? If so, great, love to hear from you.

      Is anyone claiming they can prove that they have? If so I would love to hear from them. The truth is that the RIAA are actually on shaky legal ground when it comes to traditional standards of evidence and proof. It's just lucky for them that they don't need any. To be accused is to be guilty when it comes to file sharing of copyrighted works.

  • by nnet ( 20306 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @03:04PM (#10673965) Journal
    Non RIAA Music []

    Ogg Stream []

  • by spisska ( 796395 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @07:38PM (#10675499)
    I don't find it surprising that the RIAA is going after university students, because that's a demographic whose spending on music has definitely declined.

    P2P is not really the reason, however.

    When I was in school in the early '90s, very few people had TVs in dorm rooms, and of those only a very small handful had VCRs. Also, I'd guess that by the time I graduated in '96, only about 25 percent of dorm rooms had computers. I never saw a single game console at university until the end of my junior year.

    What this means is that the students had a fixed entertainment budget, and when they couldn't get beer, about all they could buy was CDs, or film/concert tickets (or less-than-licit substances).

    Back then I copied music like crazy from CDs to tape, but I also bought loads of CDs.

    Now, however, pretty much every room has a computer, and pretty much every computer has a DVD player. I don't know the prevalence of consoles, but I reckon PS2s and X-boxen are pretty common.

    Eight to ten years ago CDs had the students' entertainment budget line pretty much all to themselves. Now CDs have to compete with DVD and game sales and rentals.

    It's not about file sharing, but about more products chasing the same dollar.

    The drop in CD sales has less to do with sharing, which I don't think is any more common now than it ever was, and more to do with the fact that the consumer's percieved value of a CD has dropped thanks to competition from other media.

    The only possible answer for people trying to sell CDs is to lower the price.
  • My question is... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ProdigySim ( 817093 ) on Saturday October 30, 2004 @08:32PM (#10675826)
    Why hasn't somebody created a service or open-source system to let artists sell their owns CDs via the web?

    I imagine the system wouldn't be a terribly hard coding problem, there is already some online store software about. As for offering it as a service, it wouldn't be too hard to cover up for the bandwidth/hosting costs and still allow musical artists to keep much of the profit themselves.
    Kind of like how MovableType did things; made a blog application, gave it away for free, and offered to set it up/host it for you for a fee.

    With new developments such as FLAC, it wouldn't be hard to distribute replicas of albums online, without the middle man.

    It seems to me that this whole music piracy issue stems from the financial inconvenience of legally getting music, and the group attacking us because of it is the one responsible for the problem.

    Let's cut him out.

The only possible interpretation of any research whatever in the `social sciences' is: some do, some don't. -- Ernest Rutherford