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Topic: New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

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  1. #1
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    New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

    From PC World

    U.S. President George W. Bush Monday signed into law a bill designed to increase protection of intellectual property (IP) such as software, films and music by raising penalties for infringement and creating a national "IP czar."


    The Prioritizing Resources and Organization for Intellectual Property Act of 2007, or PRO-IP Act, creates a high-ranking IP protection overseer, appointed by the Senate and reporting directly to the president. The position's first appointee will likely come from the next U.S. administration. The U.S. Department of Justice will also form a new division dedicated to enforcing intellectual property protection.


    Some public advocacy groups had opposed the bill, stating that its penalties were far too harsh and that it didn't balance users' rights and concerns over those of major software, media and pharmaceutical companies. "The bill only adds more imbalance to a copyright law that favors large media companies. At a time when the entire digital world is going to less restrictive distribution models, and when the courts are aghast at the outlandish damages being inflicted on consumers in copyright cases, this bill goes entirely in the wrong direction," said Gigi B. Sohn, president and co-founder of Public Knowledge, a Washington, D.C.-based digital rights group, after the passage of the Senate version of PRO-IP in late September.


    Even the DOJ came out against certain early provisions in the bill that were later struck, namely that they "could result in Department of Justice prosecutors serving as pro bono lawyers for private copyright holders regardless of their resources."
    However, American businesses and their advocates were overwhelmingly in favor of PRO-IP. U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Tom Donohue had called upon Bush to sign PRO-IP. "Mr. President, you will be doing a great service for the nation's innovators, workers, and consumers by signing this legislation into law," said in a speech made last week in Washington, D.C.


    Although major industry copyright protection groups like the Business Software Alliance, Motion Picture Association of America and the Recording Industry Association of America did not comment immediately on the president's signing the bill into law, the latter two were major supporters of the bill from its introduction last year through its passage in the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate.
    "This bill truly is music to the ears of all those who care about strengthening American creativity and jobs. At a critical economic juncture, this bipartisan legislation provides enhanced protection for an important asset that helps lead our global competitiveness," Mitch Bainwol, chairman and CEO of the RIAA said in a statement following PRO-IP's passage in the Senate.

  2. #2

    Re: New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

    Won't stop anyone. The best way to stop piracy is to lower the price of your product and make it easily attainable.

    Apple, for example, does not require registration crippling for their OS. They sell it at a reasonable price with multiple licenses for families. Contrast this with Microsoft's way of punishing their users with registration nightmares. One of the major reasons ARIA exists today is NI registration headaches.
    Garritan on GarageBand '08 using Intel iMac with 1.5G RAM
    Listen to my collection here

  3. #3

    Re: New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

    Very difficult topic.

    This response sure doesn't mesh with my experience, however:

    Quote Originally Posted by schneb View Post

    Apple...does not require registration crippling for their OS. They sell it at a reasonable price with multiple licenses for families. Contrast this with Microsoft's way of punishing their users with registration nightmares.
    Reasonable price? When I recently was in the market for a laptop, of course I had to look at The Laptop musicians are talking about - Mac Book Pro. $3,000 was the best price I could find on a model with the features I wanted. Impossible for me to pay that, so I bought another Windows machine and it's suiting me perfectly well, costing $800.

    Punished with registration nightmares? - I'll take your word for it that some people must have problems, but Microsoft's registration hasn't ever caused me a second of hassle.

    Hey--Maybe I'm feeling feisty today. Because I also don't think this is the logic a software company should use:

    "...The best way to stop piracy is to lower the price of your product and make it easily attainable..."

    I'm sure you don't mean to condone piracy by saying it's the right response to not being able to afford a program. And I'm sure you're right that some people may justify their piracy by saying things are too expensive. But whew--isn't that the grand American way though?--Expecting Everything, expecting it Now, and if possible, for Free.

    It's that spoiled child kind of attitude which has sunk the country into this market crisis. Greedy guys on Wall Street are really no different than punk kids feeling like the world owes them everything on a silver platter, and feeling like it's OK to just steal things if it's the only way they can get them.

    Copyright laws - It Does seem like the shift for a number of years now is to give large companies more protection. Maybe there's a parallel to how during this same period, big businesses have also been given the bigger tax breaks.

    I wonder how my candidate stands on these issues?--I'm not sure.

    Randy B.

  4. #4

    Re: New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

    In the grand scheme of things, tougher copyright infringement laws would seem to be pretty small potatoes.

    But don't worry, I'm sure either McCain or Obama will fix everything.

    - k
    "An artist is someone who produces things that people don't need to have, but that he - for some reason - thinks it would be a good idea to give them."

    - Andy Warhol

  5. #5

    Re: New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

    Small potatoes - well, but controlling the rights to our own creations is rather right at the heart of artists, which makes it - Big potatoes at least.

    "...I'm sure either McCain or Obama will fix everything..."

    Wellllll, not so sure they would both work on that problem, but rather sure it would be the concern of one of them.

    Randy B.

  6. #6

    Re: New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

    What's the purpose of copyright laws? Is it:

    A) Allow people to make money off their "intellectual property"
    B) Encourage people to want to make "intellectual property" in the first place by securing their opportunity to make money

    Personally I'm having trouble seeing how there are any problems with the current status of intellectual property protection. Of course there will always be a constant battle between pirates and anti-piracy protection measures (as there should be), but I haven't observed any decrease in "American creativity" ...

    Is the problem just that "big media groups" feel they're losing money because their "intellectual property" is being copied?

    And how does increasing penalties at all increase protection? If it's easy to copy something, how does saying "now you're going to have to pay even more for that in punishment!" make the pirates' work any less easy? It's not like pirates need to insure they have back-up stacks of money to use to pay penalties if they get caught.

    But I haven't read the bill so I can only speak in very general terms.
    Sean Patrick Hannifin
    My MP3s | My Melody Generator | my album
    "serious music" ... as if the rest of us are just kidding

  7. #7

    Re: New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

    Quote Originally Posted by rbowser- View Post
    "...The best way to stop piracy is to lower the price of your product and make it easily attainable..."

    I'm sure you don't mean to condone piracy by saying it's the right response to not being able to afford a program. And I'm sure you're right that some people may justify their piracy by saying things are too expensive. But whew--isn't that the grand American way though?--Expecting Everything, expecting it Now, and if possible, for Free.

    It's that spoiled child kind of attitude which has sunk the country into this market crisis. Greedy guys on Wall Street are really no different than punk kids feeling like the world owes them everything on a silver platter, and feeling like it's OK to just steal things if it's the only way they can get them.
    I don't think copying is a moral issue with a lot of people; it's not like "stealing" which people always want to compare it to. It's not that people feel they deserve to have things for free, it's that they can easily get things for free. If you go to Washington D.C. you can buy some tour-guide maps and pamphlets from people on street corners ... or you can walk a little further into an office building and get them for free. Now, of course, which would you choose? (OT: I wonder, if you take them from a guy on a corner and don't pay him, would that be "stealing"?)

    What's the logic behind spending money on something you can have free?

    I think the real logic is whether or not the artist or creator matters to you.

    If you're afraid you're going to get caught and have to pay hefty fines, he matters. And if you think that he deserves compensation/money, he'll matter. If you're not worried about getting caught, and you think the guy has enough money or hasn't produced something worth so much, what's your moral obligation to him? (Again, we're not talking about stealing his cow in the middle of the night, we're talking about putting his cow in a copying machine and bringing home a copy.)

    I'm of course not trying to condone piracy, but I don't think piracy has much to do with a "spoiled child kind of attitude" or an "Expecting Everything, expecting it Now, and if possible, for Free" attitude. It's more of a "I don't want to spend money when I don't need to" attitude, which has been around as long as money has, and is what allows money to work as it does in the first place, which I think is a very good thing. It's like a nasty side-effect to an otherwise very helpful and good medicine, rather than a separate disease needing its own treatment. (That simile may be stretched a bit... I've been watching House.)

    Now, if stealing wasn't a moral issue with people, we'd have far worse problems.
    Sean Patrick Hannifin
    My MP3s | My Melody Generator | my album
    "serious music" ... as if the rest of us are just kidding

  8. #8

    Re: New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

    [quote=rbowser-;591008]Reasonable price? When I recently was in the market for a laptop, of course I had to look at The Laptop musicians are talking about - Mac Book Pro. $3,000 was the best price I could find on a model with the features I wanted.

    I was talking about the Software and Registration of such. As for their hardware prices, I don't know when last you looked, but prices have plummeted. Also, people have done apples to apples comparison with MacBooks and Dells and found the prices are very similar. Remember, Apple uses top-of-the-line components, hence the higher price and last a long time.

    Apple is the only innovator in laptop design these days. Their newest model uses LED backlighting and a solid-cut aluminum frame. They are built like tanks. Aluminum tanks.
    Garritan on GarageBand '08 using Intel iMac with 1.5G RAM
    Listen to my collection here

  9. #9

    Re: New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

    Hiya, Schneb

    Believe me, I really wanted to get a MacBook Pro, but even the most basic machine was more than twice my budget. My shopping was done within the last two months, and I could see prices are lower than they used to be, but still not in the realm that works for me.

    It's OK, I got a top-of-the-line HP Pavillion which is amazing me with its speed and efficiency. Dual core, beautiful wide screen display et al.

    Having a laptop is a whole new world for me. It tickles me to open it up and see my entire Garritan library sitting right there waiting for me. And I got the machine because I'll soon be on a trip where I'll really be needing it.

    When I'm not out being mobile with the laptop, it'll be integrated into my home studio, and so far is doing everything I need, more than I expected really.

    So even though prices are more modest these days, it's still pretty much a world of people who can swing getting a Cadillac (Mac) or who need to stick with a Chevy (PC).

    Randy B.

  10. #10

    Re: New Pro-IP Anti-piracy Law Enacted

    Quote Originally Posted by rbowser- View Post
    Hiya, Schneb
    It's OK, I got a top-of-the-line HP Pavillion which is amazing me with its speed and efficiency. Dual core, beautiful wide screen display et al.
    Fantastic. That should get the job done. I just bought a brand new MacBook White for the wife for $999. With the Intel chip I can boot both the latest Mac OS and Windows. Not as well built as the new aluminum solid chassis, but it has Firewire which the others lack (big beef to users).

    Try revisiting Apple again when you are looking to upgrade. The product line and OS changes yearly, and most times for the better. Perhaps when you obtain your first Tony you can afford one.
    Garritan on GarageBand '08 using Intel iMac with 1.5G RAM
    Listen to my collection here

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