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Copyright Rules Gone Mad

November 19, 2010 9:56:42.447

The latest stupidity in the ongoing copyright wars is the COICA - a proposed law (just got through the Senate Judiciary Committee) that would give the Attorney General the ability to censor websites based on his office "deeming them to be primarily for infringing activity". Well. I'm sure that a lot of the activity in DropBox qualifies; on the other hand, DropBox is a really cool service for easily passing documents around. Would that be something that got shuttered? Who knows?

And what about the possible political impact? It's not a stretch to imagine a politically oriented White House (insert whichever political persuasion you fear most here) deciding to shutter an opposing set of websites based on some infringing material that landed there via end user upload. The number of ways that this sort of thing could be abused simply boggles the mind.

It's time to completely rethink copyright law. What we have now isn't working, and attempting to tighten the screws - while simultaneously extending the timespan of content owner monopolies - isn't the best way forward.

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posted by James Robertson

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