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The End of Freedom on the Internet?

This is where you can discuss your homework, family, just about anything, make strange sounds and otherwise discuss things which are really not related to the Lancer-series. Yes that means you can discuss other games.

Post Mon Oct 22, 2007 12:21 pm

The End of Freedom on the Internet?

read this story:- TV-Links closed by cops

here's The Register's take on it:- same story

Now, this case is passingly similar to the case a few weeks ago of the woman in the US who got saddled with how many? hundreds of thousands of dollars to pay the RIAA in damages. That was pretty disgusting and blatant bullying, but this British one has very serious ramifications.

Firstly, this is not a criminal matter; so why were the cops involved? Copyright infringement is a civil matter, not criminal, no criminal laws were broken. As the cops themselves admit, they actually don't know what they're supposed to have arrested him for! which is a hell of an admission in itself (but he'd still have his DNA and fingerprints taken in police-state Britain)

Secondly, let's have a look at was he's been doing? providing links to copyrighted material? actually he was providing links to links on other sites, not to the material itself. All the other sites were in foreign countries ike Japan, so the case is several steps removed. So F.A.C.T. had to give the cops a trumped-up charge of "facilitatiing infringement" - whatever the flup that means. I'd like to see that defined in an English criminal law textbook, as I don't believe that it even exists. It's been synthesized out of other copyright law and some decorative legalese for dramatic effect.

Thirdly, let's assume for the sake of argument that he was doing a bad thing (which I don't accept for a moment.) If so, then where does this leave Google, YouTube, and a plethora of other sites that carry links to material that is supposed to be copyrighted. I doubt that the cops will be busting down their doors. looks to me like it's another case of institutional bullying - pick on the little guy, the easy target, use the cops to terrorise him into complying - while the material still remains on the interweb, you just have to search a little harder for it (Stage 6, Veoh, Todou, Guba etc)

Both the involvement of the Police, the arrest itself, and the actions of F.A.C.T. are very, very questionableable and should seriously be investigated. This is a most improper use of Police time and public resources. IMHO, that is, but I doubt that I'm alone in that opinion. What do you think?

(just to point out that - I don't condone blatant piracy, and I don't necessarily beleive that freedom is lost forever on the internet because of this case - but I do think that over the last few years, that freedom is being increasingly eroded, partly due to political pressure, also, and perhaps more so, due to commercial pressures and manipulation. I don't think that the battle has been lost yet nor that is necessarily will be.)

Edited by - Tawakalna on 10/22/2007 2:59:59 PM

Post Mon Oct 22, 2007 12:33 pm

I wonder why it's a news worthy story - probably to make people think they're doing something. They've done bugger all to tackle the issue, and I hope this guy manages to get off scott free on a technicality... or simply the fact he wasn't responsible for the content linked to his site!

What they've really done is taken out the biggest part. It'd be nigh on impossible to get all the sites around the world - but taking his site down reduces the amount with access.
Naturally, I am sure google with it's page cache facility can still display all the valid links though

Internet shouldn't become a bastion for illegal activity, but it appears knee j3rk reaction instead of proper levied reaction.

That poor women with 300,000 fine. I think the ruling was simply a BULLY tactic to ensure others don't try to fight their case.

Post Mon Oct 22, 2007 1:57 pm

What did they nail on the case of the woman to impose a 300k fine?

Post Mon Oct 22, 2007 2:56 pm

this is her story - World's Dumbest Filesharer

she's almost certainly one of those dumbos who hamfistedely share the entire contents of their hard drive (oh yes, it does happen, and more than you think!) and end up with riddled computers that spam out millions of emails for Viagra as a zombie of some Russian hacker-controlled botnet, with all her online banking and personal details hived off to Nigeria. I know that she's so stupid and blatant that she really did (sort of) deserve what she got, but the scale of the award for damages (it wasn't a fine) is so colossal in comparison to the "offence" that it really makes a mockery of the proceedings. She can't possibly ever afford to pay those costs, ergo the RIAA won't actually ever get most if any of the money out of her, so they're not actually taking any material restitution. They're trying to put the willies up people. Yet, while some might desist from "illegal" downloading via p2p or Usenet, millions upon millions will continue to do so rgardless of the real or perceived consequences. So will the case have achieved anything except to teach one stupid woman a lesson, get a paper judgement, and make the RIAA look like a bunch of corporate bullyboys? It strikes me as a very peevish and spiteful case to bring, and an overly harsh judgement.

Post Wed Oct 24, 2007 5:00 pm

apparently the harsh judgement was as a direct relation to her fallacial defense.

if she / he lawyers hadn't lied through their teeth i'm sure her sentence would have been much much less.

Post Wed Oct 24, 2007 6:38 pm

This was indeed a very stupid defense strategy. Fabricate evidence and lie about everything.

The RIAA have had a few teeth knocked out of their mouths of late:

RIAA Pays US$68,68523 For Defendant's Total Legal Fees

But they usually have to pay their own legal fees even if they beat the RIAA.

But the most important thing to keep in mind is that if you're underage and you think that you can ignore the RIAA, think again. They will sue your parents and bankrupt them if they can.

Edited by - Indy11 on 10/24/2007 7:38:26 PM

Post Thu Oct 25, 2007 2:12 am

if she / he lawyers hadn't lied through their teeth

lawyers lie

I reckon these two desreve each other, the RIAA-fascists and a dumbo who tells porkies. As long as they don't come knockin' at the gates of Taw Towers!

Post Thu Oct 25, 2007 9:23 am

i think the reason it's news, Chips, is because they are trying to establish precedent - rather than lobbying (doesn't work, everybody is watching intellectual property issues like hawks and doesn't hesitate to fire off an email,fax, or phone call to their representative officials) to change the law that says hosts are solely responsible for enforcing copyright laws in their home country against their users, subject to dmca in the us or whatever onerous riaa/mpaa sponsored legislation got passed there. this was already a pretty onerous burden for hosts to comply with - example youtube, which probably gets 1000's of dmca compliance notices every day. to add yet another requirement to police user's outlinking pages is just orwellian/stalinist - an 'iron curtain' against content of questionable ownership, which would probably just result in blocking any site not a member of this new big brother league.

p.s. who said the internet was free? aussies have 1 isp and zero privacy - no 5th ammendment there, china has most of the entire world firewalled off, etc etc. on the whole the internet is "free" but that does not mean much without context - ex 90% of world traffic is routed through the U.S. (and consequently the NSA's echelon, narus, and TIA programs). countrys with 'lax' copyright laws (i call them 'just' myself) are the exception to the rule, most country's are firmly in the grip of business lobbies, who are more concerned with protecting their monopolies than free-markets (same old story really)

Post Fri Nov 02, 2007 5:40 am

well I didn't mean to say that it really ever was or is "free" - rather that authoritarian and commercial restrictions, legal or not, justifiable or not, are gathering pace - but there will always be some "freedom" on the interweb, even if means relying on dodgy IRC servers that "move around"

The efforts that you have to go to these days just to keep some privacy - TOR, PeerGuardian, hardware and software firewalls, multiple daily antivirus and spyware updates and sweeps, ad-blockers, rotating randomly generated WPA passkeys, rotating IP addresses - all so that Mrs Taw and the kids can eBuy and pfaff about without giving the crown jewels away (and Mrs Taw still falls for dancing pigs)

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