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Recording industry ‘copyright DoS attack’ rumored

Too good to be true?

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We know the entertainment industry has sought to slip language into current anti-terror legislation which could result in blanket immunity from prosecution for hacking file-sharing networks.

We know the entertainment industry fervently desires to parlay the secular sacrament of copyright into a monopoly on content production and distribution, and ultimately extend it to extort consumers with some sort of pay-per-use DRM scheme.

So it's easy to believe that, after being spurned by Congress in its bid to hack with impunity, the industry would settle for the next best thing: shutting down file-shares with DoS attacks.

No intrusion; no destruction of data. Just tie up the rogue network with automated download requests, and so stop the suspected infringer from sharing with the public.

This, we are told, is precisely what the recording industry is plotting, according to a ZD-Net story entitled "RIAA: We'll smother song swappers" by John Borland.

Citing "sources at the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA)," Borland tells us that the scheme is under consideration. It's apparently being shopped to the RIAA by opportunistic software vendors.

"According to industry sources, the technology is being provided by outside technology companies and has not yet found its way into wide use."

Too vague by half, except that the RIAA's recent legislative debacle has primed us to believe it. Had it not been for that, we might just be a bit more skeptical.

So for fun, let's pretend that this item came along out of the blue. Are we satisfied with this 'according to sources' and 'outside technology companies' business?

Wouldn't we like to know what sort of sources? Sure, they want to remain anonymous, and that's fine. We're not asking for names in print. But what are we talking about here? A senior executive? A middle manager? A secretary? A receptionist? A janitor?

And what's up with this 'technology companies' business? Why not name names in this case? Companies don't have any right to anonymity. If a company is trying to sell a DoS tool to the RIAA, the public deserves to know who they are.

And what sort of technology do they deal in? DRM, perhaps? Is it a big company traded on the NYSE? Is it a startup? Is it a couple of Linux kids from the local high-school maths club?

Too vague by half. ®

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