Update Jami sez, "The author of the new bill to break our televisions, computers, and mp3 players, Senator Gordon Smith of Oregon, has been paid tens of thousands of dollars to do it. The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) has been lobbying hard for the sole ability to decide how hard it's gonna be for us to listen to an mp3. The NAB has thrown nearly $250,000 at Republican candidates this year alone. NAB's money stuck to Gordon Smith."Andrew Kantor, in his regular USAToday column, sounds the warning tocsin:
The government, rather than the free market, would be able to say what capabilities a new device could have. And you can bet the entertainment industry would have a big say in that. If this was law a few years ago, the entire digital music movement would have been stopped in its tracks. See, the RIAA fought tooth and nail against the Diamond Multimedia Rio PMP300, eventually losing in federal court. Had the DCPA been in effect, Diamond never could have made it; the FCC would have said No.A friend of a friend was a major material witness in the Sony-Disney foolishness almost thirty years ago, and i can't say as how i feel as if the entertainment industry has learnt much since then....In short, this bill is designed to crush innovation, because the entertainment industry is unable to handle it. Its content and revenue model is stuck in the 1990s, and the people running it don't have the business sense to keep up with the digital times. They need to beg Congress to pass laws protecting their business model.
The entertainment industry has been doing its level best to shoot itself in both feet simultaneously with large-calibre stupidity, and this sounds to me like more of the same.
Here's how it works. The DCPA would allow the FCC to regulate any device capable of moving content around. Can you transfer content to it from your computer? It's regulated. Can it convert music or movies from one format to another? It's regulated. Does it have output jacks? It's regulated.And the entertainment industry will find it difficult to understand why more and more people go out of their way to avoid the law's restrictions.
What features couldn't the FCC regulate? Only which permit "customary historic use" - such as playing music and making low-grade copies.
So the big-time pirates - the kind folks who burn thousands of DVDs for sale on the streets of Beijing - will be unaffected. And a good number of people who are affected will start using file-sharing software to get better-quality copies of their entertainment.
And there's the irony: People who simply want to exercise their legal rights under copyright law - to make a backup copy of their music - will be forced to get their entertainment illegally. And the people who obey the law will find they're getting less and less value for their money.
Latter fifties, married, out of work (had knee surgery and haven't gotten back to work); my (step) son-in-law is back from Iraq, but a lot of boys are still over there. Support our troops -- throw the Republicans out!
Cost of the War in Iraq to Date
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