Listen to Leia
Public Knowledge, via Clay Shirky, via BoingBoing, is reporting that the Capitol Hill lobbyists for the MPAA are rushing to get “network monitoring provisions” into the broadband stimulus package before Congress right now. Apparently they believe that if they get to look at every bit of data that passes through US ISP’s, then Hollywood will be able to stop the illegal sharing of video content.
According to the rules of Internet memes, I will quote from Star Wars to describe the likely result of this, “The more you tighten you grip Tarken, the more star systems will slip through your fingers.” Â In other words, the people who create, develop and maintain file-sharing networks and P2P technology are not going to hear this news, shrug their shoulders and give up. Â They will innovate around it, and come up with something that is even harder for the MPAA, the RIAA, BREIN, etc. to combat. Â An easy solution would simply be to encrypt the traffic. All the major Usenet providers already offer an encrypted solution and I’m sure something could be figured out for large-scale Bittorrent and direct download sites.
Of course a better solution would be to just have the ISP’s themselves stand up for themselves and their customers and rightly point out that this idea is ridiculous. Â Or to have Congress do the same. Â But I’m not counting on that, and nor will the P2P community I suspect.