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House Passes Pro IP Overwhelmingly

from the well-that's-no-good dept

Last week we questioned why Congress seemed to think that the White House should be playing the role of copyright cop. Yet, apparently, the House of Representatives didn't think it was a question worth asking, as it has passed the PRO IP bill by an overwhelming vote, 410 to 10. It seems like our Congressional Representatives felt that, once they got rid of one bad portion of the bill, that the rest of it must be perfectly fine. This bill has a ton of problems, expanding copyright law and the executive branch's authority in ways that are pretty clearly unnecessary. It is, in effect, a bill to prop up the obsolete business model of one particular industry, so it's rather disappointing that our Representatives have rushed through to approve it with little discussion or debate over whether it's even necessary. Either way, it seems unlikely to get much further, as the Justice Department has already come out against the bill, one would hope that even if the Senate approves a version of the bill, the President would veto it.

In the meantime, though, given just how much damage arbitrary expansions of copyright law have done, you would think that Congress would at least want to spend some time exploring the issues before rushing through new laws. Tragically, it seems that entertainment industry lobbyists still have politicians convinced that stronger copyright is naturally "good."

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  1. identicon
    MLS, 11 May 2008 @ 10:36am

    IP inaccurate

    Merely as a point of clarification, the name of this bill voted upon by the House (which means it has a long way to go to even be enacted by Congress) is terribly misleading. This is not about "IP" generically. It is specifically about copyrights under federal law and a legally questionable incursion by the federal government into the area of trade secrets, an area that has traditionally been the province of the states as sovereign entities.

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