How The RIAA Has Jumpstarted The Use Of Encryption

from the driven-underground dept

We’ve said it plenty of times before. The only thing the entertainment industry has done with their file sharing lawsuits is drive the file sharing underground, and made it much more difficult for them to realize their mistake and embrace it down the road. While many others have compared the RIAA’s battle with Prohibition, Clay Shirky has taken the argument one step further and is pointing out that the RIAA’s lawsuits have done what the cypherpunks failed to do over the past decade: encourage everyone to use encryption. While the cypherpunks have been warning about the need for encryption for years (usually as a protection against government behavior), most people ignored it because they didn’t see the need. They weren’t doing anything “bad”, so why should they bother with the trouble of figuring out how to encrypt their messages. However, now it turns out that plenty of people are doing something that the recording industry has deemed as “bad” and are being sued for it. Thus, people suddenly have a real incentive to use encryption that they never had before – and that’s likely to be a lasting result. Shirky suggests that five years from now, people will look back and wonder what the music industry was so upset about, but plenty of people will still be encrypting their communications.

Rate this comment as insightful
Rate this comment as funny
You have rated this comment as insightful
You have rated this comment as funny
Flag this comment as abusive/trolling/spam
You have flagged this comment
The first word has already been claimed
The last word has already been claimed
Insightful Lightbulb icon Funny Laughing icon Abusive/trolling/spam Flag icon Insightful badge Lightbulb icon Funny badge Laughing icon Comments icon

Comments on “How The RIAA Has Jumpstarted The Use Of Encryption”

Subscribe: RSS Leave a comment

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Comment Options:

Make this the or (get credits or sign in to see balance) what's this?

What's this?

Techdirt community members with Techdirt Credits can spotlight a comment as either the "First Word" or "Last Word" on a particular comment thread. Credits can be purchased at the Techdirt Insider Shop »

Follow Techdirt

Techdirt Daily Newsletter

Techdirt Deals
Techdirt Insider Discord
The latest chatter on the Techdirt Insider Discord channel...