back to article Senate bill sics DoJ on copyright infringers

As legislation allowing the US Department of Justice to sue suspected copyright violators on behalf of the entertainment industry heads to a vote on the Senate floor, an outspoken advocacy group is calling for the public to voice their concern. Public Knowledge, an organization also behind many of the complaints against …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    IT Angle

    you can't say we were bought off

    RIAA rep : can't you help us?

    Congressperson : I don't want to appear bought

    RIAA rep : well, we could always make big donations to your party or a favorite charity

    Congressperson : that would be nice, but I don't want to appear bought

    RIAA rep : ok, then, we'll put the check in the mail

    Congressperson : ok, but i don't want to appear bought

    RIAA rep : nice doing business with you

    Congressperson : we didn't do any business, i'm just looking out for our national trade interests and IP rightsholders

    RIAA rep : you're bought

    Congressperson : oh yeah

    Paris, 'cuz she can't be bought, but she's got a price, too.

  2. Stuart Cherrington

    So the IP's get it for free?

    So what they're saying is the DoJ will have the ability to sue copyright infringers on behalf of the IP's?

    Who is paying the Legal fee's here?

  3. P Saunders
    Paris Hilton

    ...and let the taxpayer pick up the tab...

    Nothing like big business making the taxpayer pay its legal bills. That means more coke to stuff up the snoot of movie and music executives.

    Paris, 'cause as a taxpayer, she, too, will be bent over and given a good one.

  4. Dennis
    Black Helicopters


    The American economy is on its knee's but its government is still doing its best to protect the profits of big corporations. If I lost my company money I'd be sacked .......................but I guess once to start to earn above a certain amount then the Government will just step in and do you dirty work for you.

    When a Government is afraid of its people that's democracy......when its the other way around its a dictatorship. Of if only American can go to war with itself it could end the tyranny.

  5. Michael C

    Actually, this is good, trust me

    Why is this a GOOD thing?

    1: this castrates the RIAA. With an oficial body of enforecement, the RIAA will have to process all activity through this agency, and they would be subject to harassment suits from individuals if they did not.

    2: the taxpayer will be footing the legal bill. No, this is actually GOOD. ...because they will not be able to a) go after people that they "think" are guilty because of the immense, million dollar, countersuits there will be if they're found innocent, b) since there's no budget for enforcement in the bill, it will be both low priority/high reward only prosecution.

    3: Do you see the government kicking down doors and seizing property of pot smokers, casual drug users, illegal gun owners, etc? no. They only do after the dealers, big time distributors, and true dangerous persons. Why? a) they can recoup damages, fines, and/or property to pay the excessive legal bills, or b) the community actually agrees the expense is worth the effort because it removes the risk of violent crime, and c) manpoewr is limted. Do you think the agency will blow $30-50K in legal fees and manpower to seize a kids's PC, to do what, fine him a few grand he can't afford to pay? Keep in mind, the bulk of offenders do not own property. If you ask a cop in your neighborhood if they now a particluar person doesn drugs, usually the answer is "yes, we're aware" but the do nothing, because the effor to tdo so, even for a CLEAR CUT, easily provable guilty conviction, is simply not worth disrupting the commuity until the kid actually becomes an issue (drives stoned, gets in fights, robs someone, etc). Shit, I know a dozen cops who smoke pot...

    This agency will almost exclusively start by targeting corporations, and anyone who PROFITS from sharing. After 5-10 years of that, with an occasional bust for nothing more than publicity ("we'd like to announce our largest every piracy bust... " etc.) maybe we'll see some actual local activity. With this bill passed, the ONLY thing the RIAA will be able to do is complain to the govenment about their lack of action, and continue their media war, but their ability to investigate and prosecute will be gone.

    ...and for those where guilt is assured, for those who are big time file traders and stealing hundreds or thousands of files, and if the government does see cause to get the warrent and proceed, if and when the person gets caught, convicted, and punished, well, they did afterall break the law... I can't have sympaty for them.

    Will this agency even care about casul infringement? copying DVDs you own for your own uses, downloading a few songs you used to own, or have on tape but not digital format? no. They really can't be bothered with it. If they did care, do you think there would be so many people on the road with valid licenses without car insurance? Estimates place approxamately 30% of south carolina drivers as un or underinsured and driving illegally. They get a slap on the rist, a fine, and a license suspension when they get caught, pay their dues, and typically, do it again... When the cops have reason to target you for another crime, IP violations will just be another item on the stack against you, and typically not the key crime unless you;re a really agressive (and careless) offender.

    Fact is, even if they can connect uploads and downloads to you, it;s simply too easy to defeat the case in court, too easy to introduce doubt. To get a conviction, the evidence is going to have to be especially damning, and in court, odds are half the people on the jury will actually be guilty themselves, and leaning in your favor...

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