The legality of sharing copyrighted files over P2P networks notiwithstanding, there are clearly beneficial and legal uses to said networks. But Spain has apparently decided to throw the proverbial baby out with the bathwater, as they've introduced draconian legislation to crack down on all filesharing (via Slashdot). But it gets worse; instead of going after those breaking the law, they're placing criminal liability on the ISPs, if they're seen as facilitating file trading (which probably means not automatically blocking any network that could be used as such). Of course, this won't work because it places the burden on a party that's unable to stop the activity. And if all this isn't enough of a subsidy to the entertainment companies, they're also adding a tax on blank CDs, the revenue from which will go to media coffers. If there's a silver lining to this, Spain should be a nice case study on the effects of such regulation. If it utterly fails there, as it probably will, it may be hard to get similar legislation passed elsewhere -- either that or the entertainment industry will just call for even stiffer penalties.
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