John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

RIAA Boss Announces “Right-From-WrongWare 1.0”

right_wrong.jpgIf you lack the moral compass with which to determine ownership of digital music, Recording Industry Association of America president Cary “tough love” Sherman would like to provide you with one. Speaking at the Congressional Internet Caucus Advisory Committee’s State of the Net Conference in late January, Sherman suggested that rather than filtering the Internet globally for copyright infringements, as some have proposed, it might be better to filter it locally. At the end-user level–with spyware built into ISP-provided modems, routers and perhaps anti-malware and media software as well. “Filters can be put in the applications for example,” Sherman said. “You know, one could have a filter on the end user’s computer.”

Why would anyone agree to such a thing? For their personal enrichment, of course. “I don’t think you can estimate the educational benefit of these things. … A lot of this is basically letting people know that what they’re doing is not OK,” Sherman reasoned. “And for a lot of people that makes a difference in their behavior.”

A bit of stretch, even for Sherman, as Ars Technica aptly notes: “Filtering as a concept is ultimately doomed by encryption unless the ‘filters’ simply block entire protocols altogether, and talking about the consumer benefits of installing RIAA-approved filtering software is just another sign of how ludicrous the entire debate has become.”