How US Copyright Expansionism Created The Infrastructure That Now Stymies US Gov't In Stopping Wikileaks

from the cause-and-effect dept

Two of the bigger stories these days are the US government's copyright expansionist policies with domain name seizures and bills like COICA and (of course) the whole Wikileaks story. We've noted some similarities between large centralized systems reacting badly to distributed systems, but there's also a much more direct connection as well. Glyn Moody points us to a blog post by Brendan Scott that lays out the basic fact that the distributed distribution tools that Wikileaks now relies on were mainly developed in response to constant copyright expansionism at the behest of the US government (on behalf of the entertainment industry). As Scott notes, he wonders if the US government will recognize this. However, given that it's still pushing for even greater copyright expansionism (which will only make the "leaks" issue more difficult to control), it appears that very few in power actually understand this.


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  1.  
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    :Lobo Santo (profile), Dec 7th, 2010 @ 11:19am

    So...

    Irony at its finest, then...?

    (The common definition of irony, that is. Not the dictionary definition.)

    ; P

     

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  2.  
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    rabbit wise (profile), Dec 7th, 2010 @ 11:31am

    It is times like these that I point in amusement.

    Dear Gov't,

    You are so dumb.

    Love, Rabbit

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 7th, 2010 @ 11:37am

    Re: So...

    From the US government's point of view, this actually is ironic in that the end result (them having less control) is the direct opposite of the conclusion they expected when they started pushing for more control.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 7th, 2010 @ 11:46am

    They believe they can put the genie back into the bottle.

    They believe that, just because they define these things as illegal and clamp down on people them, most people will magically stop doing them, and the few who don't can be rounded up and imprisoned.

    They do not believe they are dealing with an exponential curve.

     

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  5.  
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    Andrew (profile), Dec 7th, 2010 @ 11:50am

    Dreams of further expansionism

    A newer post from the same guy discusses the huge number of hits Wikileaks has taken over the past few days (kicked off Amazon, bank account suspended, MasterCard & Visa revoked, DDOSed, etc.) - the sorts of protections and sanctions that the copyright lobby can, thankfully, only dream of - and points out that they're still around and more prominent than ever.

    This is a response truly worthy of shock and of our awe. It is raw power being put to work, largely extra-legally. The exercise of this power has been extremely effective, remarkably quick and unburdened by judicial oversight Ė it is the sort of response a copyright ideologue dreams of.

    How can anyone take the copyright proposition seriously anymore? This is raw power, exercised by not just any old government, but by a very motivated Superpower Ė and one which is aided by other governments large and small who also have a joint interest is keeping diplomatic cables secret. If this raw power canít contain this information how could copyright holders backed only by a Copyright Act possibly do so? How is it possible to argue for extensions to the Act other than on the basis of vengeance?

     

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  6.  
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    PRMan, Dec 7th, 2010 @ 12:02pm

    Re: So...

    You know, it's ironic that those don't match...

     

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  7.  
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    iamtheky (profile), Dec 7th, 2010 @ 12:18pm

    What tools exactly? The article is certain it uses these tools and that they were spawned from government interference, but lists none. I am sure because it would quickly be shown that they were developed by research and/or educational institutions.

    Remember there are plenty of legitimate uses for torr....or are we finally done with that argument and now just going to attribute all good P2P features to circumvention.

     

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  8.  
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    Trundle, Dec 7th, 2010 @ 12:28pm

    meh. More than a little bit of a stretch, as so many other factors were in play.

    I'll say this, who the hell is going to be surprised or bother raising a fuss when some torrent site is squashed after seeing the US go nuclear on Assange? They obviously don't care what anybody thinks.

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 7th, 2010 @ 12:30pm

    Re:

    It's not the P2P specifically, it's the decentralized systems that evolved so rapidly because of constant attempts at shut-downs.

     

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  10.  
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    Jay (profile), Dec 7th, 2010 @ 1:40pm

    Yeah...

    *he he he*

    The more you push for control, the less you had in the first place. Sage advice.

     

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  11.  
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    ChimpBush McHitlerBurton, Dec 7th, 2010 @ 4:15pm

    Re: So...

    I've always thought that the dictionary definition was the common definition. How else would we define irony?

    Wait. I'll bet you define it along the lines of Poetic Justice, don't you?

    Yeah, that's called "Poetic Justice". I imagine Poetic Justice is somewhat ironic for the perpetrator of a wrong who receives PJ. It's just not ironic to the onlooker or historian; it's satisfyingly expected.

    CBMHB

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 7th, 2010 @ 4:32pm

    weak

    like blaming the police for fighting crime and thus making criminals smarter...

     

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  13.  
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    sm5por (profile), Dec 7th, 2010 @ 6:07pm

    Re: weak

    Yeah, or like blaming the users of antibiotics for polluting the environment and thus creating killer bacteria...

     

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    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Dec 7th, 2010 @ 6:49pm

    Distributed Denial Of DDOS Counterattack

    Thatís how I see all these Wikileaks mirrors. :)

     

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  15.  
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    Ben, Dec 7th, 2010 @ 8:54pm

    Re: Re: So...

    the common definition of irony more funny coincidence then the technical dictionary definition.

    Dictionary definitions don't mean shit in the real world. They're just supposed to be a record of how people use them.

    Words are defined by there usage, and not what's written in a book.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 8th, 2010 @ 5:54am

    Re: Re: Re: So...

    No, the common definition of irony is not "funny coincidence" but more "unintended contradictory outcome".

     

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  17.  
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    ChimpBush McHitlerBurton, Dec 8th, 2010 @ 5:05pm

    Re: Re: Re: So...

    I was going to volley with a correspondence replete with briery aspersion, thinly-veiled innuendo, unmitigated malignity, calumny regarding your matrilineage, and a smattering of abject censure...

    Then I realized that words are defined by their usage, and not what's written in a book...so you'd have nowhere to go to understand what I just said.

    Shame really...

    CBMHB

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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