Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick


Filed Under:
copyright, filtering, tennessee, universities

Companies:
mpaa, riaa



RIAA Gets Tennessee Law To Force Universities To Filter Networks For Copyrighted Content

from the the-riaa-never-sleeps dept

After more than a decade of watching the entertainment industry (mainly the RIAA and the MPAA), one thing I've learned is that the organization never gives up in pushing its legislative agenda. If there's a setback in one area, you can be sure that others from the organization are eagerly pushing the exact same rules through some other angle. The typical MO is that they try to get federal legislation passed in their favor. However, if that fails, they switch to the fallback plans which involve international treaties and state laws. Both of these are great because they tend to get a lot less scrutiny. State laws are a bit of a pain, because you have to get a few of them approved to create the "groundswell" that makes other states jump on board, but changes to state laws can often pass through under the radar.

That appears to be what's happening in the effort to force universities to install filters monitoring their networks for any unauthorized transmissions. You may recall that the RIAA pushed strongly to get Congress to pass laws requiring filters. Basically, the entertainment industry first flat-out lied (yes, lied) about how big a problem file sharing on campus was, and that got some Congressional Reps (with plenty of campaign contributions from the entertainment industry) to introduce legislation punishing universities if they didn't filter their networks. Widespread outcry against that legislation helped water it down, but it appears the industry just moved on to state legislatures.

The RIAA is now celebrating the fact that Tennessee has passed legislation that requires universities to install filters if they've received at least 50 DMCA requests. Considering the massive number of DMCA notices that the RIAA has been known to file, this is hardly a large hurdle. The law will cost Tennessee taxpayers nearly $10 million in the first year, and another $1.5 million each year -- based on the state's own estimates. And for what? To put in filters that won't work, just to try to prop up an obsolete business model from legacy players in an industry that needs to learn how to adapt to the market?

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Nov 2008 @ 3:38pm

    do they get to turn the filters off for ever 50 counternotices filed?

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

  • identicon
    KD, 18 Nov 2008 @ 4:36pm

    The only solution ...

    The only solution to this problem is to eliminate copyrights. Not easy, I agree, but nothing less will stop the nonsense.

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

  • identicon
    Relonar, 18 Nov 2008 @ 4:36pm

    ssh tunneling / sftp :: problem solved (on pirate side)

    for everyone else...oh right they get screwed as usual
    bad laws get passed
    innocents get sued/expelled/bankrupted
    universities pay for upkeep and installation of filters
    network expansion is restricted by the use of such filters
    riaa still doesn't make more from sales
    riaa still doesn't 'lose' less from piracy
    piracy doesn't go down

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Nov 2008 @ 4:49pm

    RIAA = Real Ignorant Assholes of America!

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Nov 2008 @ 4:50pm

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

  • identicon
    TPBer, 18 Nov 2008 @ 5:40pm

    Wow

    Just go off campus to a friends house with cable and this will really be effective.

    Remember to always use PeerGuardian and DL away.

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

  • identicon
    Stu Dent, 18 Nov 2008 @ 6:37pm

    Easy to fix

    Instead of squandering tax payer moneys on worthless pursuits, the state of Tennessee and others should pass a law stating that all state funded schools shall not provide on campus network connectivity. Each student can get their own connection as they see fit. End of problem.

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

  • identicon
    Adam, 18 Nov 2008 @ 6:49pm

    This is fucking sick. They should at least finance this. Why should be public money spent of protecting corporate business? Oh wait, never mind... This is United Corporations of America, I almost forgot for a moment that "people" and "public" don't matter in this country:((
    A.

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

  • identicon
    Crysm, 18 Nov 2008 @ 7:10pm

    What's worse is that the University of Tennessee (the most likely target of this law) is already suffering pretty badly from budget cuts. They cut an entire department this year; they can't afford to do stupid pointless things like this.

    At least I'm finally off their networks; good grief.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Nov 2008 @ 7:26pm

    Hey idiots what is Nashville's nickname? Figure it out. Total music revenue for Nashville was 2.6 billion in 2006.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 18 Nov 2008 @ 7:51pm

      Re:

      "Hey idiots what is Nashville's nickname? Figure it out. Total music revenue for Nashville was 2.6 billion in 2006."

      Oh - ok.
      It all makes so much more sense now. Thank you.

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

  • identicon
    JR, 18 Nov 2008 @ 8:10pm

    RIAA

    In your article you use the phrase "legislative agenda." You don't state what that is, or what YOUR version of it is. How can I compare your argument to theirs?

    JR

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

    • icon
      Killer_Tofu (profile), 19 Nov 2008 @ 6:09am

      Re: RIAA

      If you do not know what their agenda is by now, you must have been living under a rock for the last 10 years.
      Please google 'RIAA' and it is all over the net how much they hate their customers. They are driven by one thing and one thing only, money. And they will extract it any way they possibly can. Including getting legislators at any level to pass laws where it sues public funds to enforce their private agenda.

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

  • identicon
    Michael Beck, 18 Nov 2008 @ 8:16pm

    Tennessee

    I live in Tennessee.. I don't go to a university.. but I am appalled at this! Who wrote this bill? I want to vote them out ASAP!

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

  • identicon
    JR, 18 Nov 2008 @ 8:16pm

    $10 mil ?

    Any chance you can explain why it costs 10mil to install software, filters?
    If you use figures in your argument, you might be able to explain them, or tell us were you saw these numbers. What government source?

    JR

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 18 Nov 2008 @ 8:53pm

    Just shows how STUPID the RIAA is, They need to be wiped off the face of the Earth

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

  • identicon
    tennessee student, 19 Nov 2008 @ 5:08am

    details

    not sure why this is just now getting attention. i've been blocked since august. here are the details utk has on its site

    http://oit.utk.edu/copyright/blocked/

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

  • identicon
    MrBeck, 19 Nov 2008 @ 5:45am

    Tax CDs

    By far the easiest way to deal with this is to add a TN tax on CDs of say $.10 per CD to pay for the filters. I'm sure the music sellers wouldn't want to take a free ride on the TN population and after all it's they who benefit.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 19 Nov 2008 @ 4:34pm

    One thing that might help limit legislation is for the sons and daughters of Government officials to be outed. Then the RIAA would have to explain why they are doing selective enforcement. Image the closing arguments at a jury trial where the defense explains how RIAA only goes after people that are not part of the Goverment that passes the laws they and their families do not have to obey.

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

  • identicon
    dan tynan, 20 Nov 2008 @ 9:29am

    RIAA, death and taxes - what they all have in common

    Good story.

    Our tax dollars are not only saving billionaire bankers from their own bad habits, they're also helping to bail out the recording industry. Does the RIAA really truly need our help? I don't think so.

    More here: http://blogs.computerworld.com/riaa_tax

    cheers,

    dt

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 20 Nov 2008 @ 12:57pm

    who said internet censoring in china was bad for democracy? what is good for china is good for the world!
    -every file on internet is legal, or isn't it?

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


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