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Here we'll explore the nexus of legal rulings, Capitol Hill policy-making, technical standards development, and technological innovation that creates -- and will recreate -- the networked world as we know it. Among the topics we'll touch on: intellectual property conflicts, technical architecture and innovation, the evolution of copyright, private vs. public interests in Net policy-making, lobbying and the law, and more.

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March 4, 2005

Conservatives on Grokster: Don't Legislate from the Bench

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Via Fred von Lohmann @ Deep Links, the Eagle Forum in its brief [PDF] in the Grokster case (emphasis, mine):


In many ways, peer-to-peer technology is the printing press of the internet in distributing massive amounts of information quickly and cheaply to the world, and First Amendment rights are at stake. ... Citation of alleged copyright infringment by some users of the printing press is not justification for shutting down all presses, and certainly not before their powerful legitimate uses become fully apparent.
...
Legislating from the bench is unjustified in general, and is particularly ill-suited to new technologies that facilitate constitutionally protected speech and association.

...and the American Conservative Union and National Taxpayers Union in their brief [PDF]:

The Court should see this for what it is—an attempt to leverage a lawful, but statutorily limited, monopoly over the distribution of expressive "works of authorship" into an unwarranted and anti-competitive monopoly over the distribution of innovative technologies. ...

Podcasting, of course, is merely one of innumerable examples of innovative technology that builds upon, and interacts with, the peer-to-peer distribution networks of the kind that Respondents have enabled.

Comments (1) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: Laws and Regulations


COMMENTS

1. Rafael Venegas on March 5, 2005 9:14 PM writes...

The logical decsion of the court in the Grokster case is to say that the court will not decide on what the law does not say. In other words, no more jurisprudence addendums to the law. Now the Copyright Act does not prohibit or mention p2p.

Therefore no court decision should not say what the lawmakers have not said in the law... because they are politician that like the money of the copyright cartels but are afaid of the voters or spend all their time in raising funds or getting reelected and thus make laws that do not hurt big money or the voters. The position of legislator is "let the non elected federal judges make the difficult choices".

This article is right... laws should not be made (or completed) in the courts as seems to be the case with almost every law through frequently confusing and contradictory jurisprudence, a total mess. Each new jurisprudence makes the legal spaghetti plate bigger and moves the law further away from the people.

Further, so that people and even lawyers can understand the laws all jurisprudence should be either eliminated or adopted into the laws so that laws are complete (and understandable) when read.

I have personally gone through a copyright infringement case as plaintiff and the judge, as I report and detail on my web site, comitted over 200 errors of facts and law... that is how bad the copyright spaghetti law is, even judges have little understanding of the law.

Of course, some lawyers will not like the idea just proposed as they mistakenly fear loosing work... as as in the past many feared automation unemployment which in the end has been of great benefit to humankind.

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