|Received:||11/14/2004 10:39:03 PM|
|Agency:||Federal Trade Commission|
|Rule:||Notice Announcing Public Workshop and Requesting Public Comment and Participation|
|Docket ID:||Not yet available|
Comments:While the vested interests argue that their method of making money is endangered by "peer to peer netwoks", it is important to understand that "peer to peer" cannot be outlawed without completely disabling communications. A phonecall is a "peer to peer" transfer of information. Accessing a web page means files are transferred: text, graphics, sound, scripts. This has all been gone over before. The photocopier, the video tape, the audio tape. Each time, the vested interests have raised loud cries of "foul" at the hazard to their profits, yet movie and music houses make larger profits now than they ever have. The free flow of information is the basis of social and scientific advancement. The time in which communications failed is rightfully called the "Dark Ages". "Peer to peer" software has nothing to do with breaking the law than automobiles that are *capable* of speeding, photocopiers that are *capable* of copying legally protected works, fingers that are *capable* of picking pockets, mouths that are *capable* of spitting on the sidewalk, or any other tool of human creation since any tool can be misused. Yet it is the illegal act which is prosecutable, not the tool used to speed, copy, rob or spit. Otherwise, we would all be in shackles for fear we might maybe commit a crime. And that is all that regulation of "peer to peer" networking software does. If present copyright had anything to do with "securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries", they might have an argument. With the absurd extent that "copyright" covers now, the very creativity that was supposed to be fostered is being crushed by the averace of the vested interests. The fact that individuals are engaging in "illegal" activity without malice, without purpose of gain, is a response to the absurd levels that the laws have already reached. Civil disobedience is far less a factor than simply human nature being overrun by out of control legislators who are paid by the vested interests to protect their profit margins. How can there be libraries full of law books and still say that "ignorance of the law is no defense"? Even lawyers and judges cannot know all the laws. Selective enforcement is making a mockery of any semblance of rule of law.