Carl Guderian on Wed, 10 May 2000 03:35:37 +0200 (CEST)

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[Nettime-bold] Re: <nettime> Napster Hurts Free Software

It would appear Mr. Perens has taken a further step
and applied one of the totalitarian techniques
outlined below to his own words. The link is defunct.
Perens forgets that the internet won't just route
around measures like those--it will also run over them
like Caligula's giant lawnmower (I rented the movie
recently; it's as bad as I remember it).
If recording companies really try to impose trusted
client on us, geeks will crack it faster than you can
say "40-bit export limit." They will crack it and all
variations thereof, before and after recording
companies spend millions of unrecoverable dollars and
push through unenforceable laws.
Napster and open source software arise from the same
geek impulses of hubris, laziness, and impatience.
Someone somewhere wanted to do something that should
have been simple but was told it was illegal
(exporting PGP), unsupported (DVD players for Linux
--> DeCSS), or
has to be done "our" way (Windows). Napster is no
threat to open source software. On the contrary; it
has spread the open source concept to the recording
I doubt geeks are losing sleep over the (ab)use of
Napster. When the first copy protection scheme was
cracked, no geek cried "My Ghod! I am cutting my own
throat! I am become Death, Destroyer of Intellectual
Property (now we are all sons of bitches)!" Copy
protection just got in the way of whatever needed to
be done at the time and, once broken, was quickly

By making an issue of Napster, the RIAA have reaped a
whirlwind because they represent something every geek
hates: the suit who rules over a technology
(recording) or process (distribution) he or she knows
nothing about, nor cares to. The present battle
provides the geeks' big chance (nay, duty!) to whack
the Pointy Haired Boss with the clue stick.

Entertainment industry execs have reminded everyone
that they are overpaid middlemen (and -women) who
fleece their artists as regularly as they do the
consumers, so they are starting at a moral deficit. If
they want to come out ahead, they'll have to find a
business model that will work under current and
foreseeable conditions, not lean on Congress or the
WTO to impose unworkable and ineffective "solutions."

Keep on Rockin' in the Free Global Market.

Rev. Carl X,
who finds ripping mp3's easy and fun, or will after
1) buying and installing a CD burner
2) buying a large and fast hard drive
3) securing a fast internet connection
4) finding an mp3 site that has what I want
5) downloading tracks
6) buying blank CDs
7) burning a CD that
8) can only be played on mp3 players

--- Nettime's roving reporter <>
> Editorial: Music Bootlegging with Napster Hurts Free
> Software
> Posted by: Bruce Perens on Thursday May 04, @03:22AM

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