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Brazilian Court Bans P2P Software

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the next-up-cars-and-cheeseburgers dept.

Networking 216

Earlier this year, at the behest of an anti-piracy group consisting of the usual suspects from the recording industry, a Brazilian court ruled that a company named Cadare Information Technology must implement a filter on the P2P software they distributed on their website to weed out copyrighted content. Cadare was unable comply with the order because they didn't develop the software; they merely offered it for download. The case went back to court, and a Brazilian judge has now decided to ban distribution of the software because it can be used to assist copyright infringement. "He went on to suggest that any website offering the software alongside advertising (i.e, trying to profit from offering it) would be committing a crime, punishable by between two and four years in jail."

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Is it time.... (4, Insightful)

Immostlyharmless (1311531) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474091)

to start killing the lawyers yet?

Re:Is it time.... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474315)

tell me what software interacts wwith the net....that cant be used for p2p use....
and let the LIST BEGIN
let em ban it all and see what kind of interent they have
no webs ervers
no ftp servers
no streaming servers
no chat servers
hrm whats left......

Re:Is it time.... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474331)

The time has come to start flooding Slashdot with our uuencoded porn and mp3s.

Re:Is it time.... (2, Funny)

emurphy42 (631808) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474367)

Oh, great, now I have this mental image of the Goatse troll posts actually being steganography for something else even worse. You owe me a gallon of brain bleach.

Re:Is it time.... (4, Funny)

Nerdfest (867930) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474355)

The number of them seems to be getting to the point where we're going to need to start culling them like deer. Perhaps a tag system ... say two per year per person. Ahhh ... I can almost see the BMW and Brooks Brothers logos up over the fireplace as you tell the grandkids "Yep, that one was a civil lawyer ... got him from 250 yards"

Re:Is it time.... (2, Interesting)

jamstar7 (694492) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474597)

The number of them seems to be getting to the point where we're going to need to start culling them like deer. Perhaps a tag system ... say two per year per person. Ahhh ... I can almost see the BMW and Brooks Brothers logos up over the fireplace as you tell the grandkids "Yep, that one was a civil lawyer ... got him from 250 yards"

They mark trees to be culled with a big red X painted on them. Howbout we mark the lawyers with Bluetooth headsets?

Re:Is it time.... (2, Interesting)

ivucica (1001089) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475131)

And we don't even have to spend time and effort - they already do it themselves! Question is, how do we differ them from the common businessman?

Re:Is it time.... (3, Insightful)

master5o1 (1068594) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475241)

how do we differ them from the common businessman?

Is this really a problem?

Re:Is it time.... (1)

ivucica (1001089) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475251)

In the same way you want to differ between bugs :-)

to be pedantic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29475213)

trees get felled.

Re:Is it time.... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474361)

Lawyers breed innovation.

Would the technologies come up in the last few years if Napster wasn't banned?

Keep banning the stuff. We'll come up with something more awesome.

Re:Is it time.... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474507)

Holy shit I finally get it. American "capitalism" has subtlety transformed from a system where competition breeds innovation in order to one-up your competition and be rewarded with increased profits, into a system where lawyers ban all kinds of crap to fuel sneaky and underhanded ways of skirting the "law" in order to screw everyone out of all of their money!

It all makes sense now!!

Re:Is it time.... (4, Insightful)

knarf (34928) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475191)

Not really, no. This story is not about 'American capitalism', unless you want to add Brazil as a state to the Union which I'm sure they'd be less than happy about.

If you see an economy as an organism you'll see that that economy/that organism suffers from some of the same ailments as a live organism. As soon as the organism gets successful there will be parasites which try to hop along for the ride, taking from the organism without giving back. The world economy is quite successful in most part, which has lead to the rise of a whole host of parasitic species. Some of them are easily recognized as they are the common class of criminal, from pickpocket to burglar to bank robber. Others are not as easily recognized because they have both adapted to the host as well as changed the host to make themselves be unrecognizable. In the latter class is where you'll find those lawyers, the bonus-grabbing old boy network, the self-serving politicians and other leaches.

In an organism you can act in several ways to combat a parasite infestation. You can try to kill the parasites, help the organism's immune system to recognize them and thus indirectly kill them or you can try to make the organism a less hospitable host to the parasite.

It is clear that the first option is not a choice in a civilized society. The second and third choices would be usable though: point out the parasites to society and change society to be less hospitable to them. As the parasite infestation is very deep and wide, especially in those organs of society which are responsible for directing the immune system (politics and law) this will be a hard task. Hard, but not impossible. Not all organs are infested, find out which have yet held the parasites at bay and use those to eradicate them from the rest. That is easier said than done but is seems the only way to clear out the mess without killing the organism, the civilized society which we want to live in.

Re:Is it time.... (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474919)

Keep banning the stuff. We'll come up with something more awesome.

When you do, you'll also find out soon enough that it's been patented for a good few years before you found it by some patent troll.

lol (0, Redundant)

Wister285 (185087) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474093)

lol

another judge with no clue (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474095)

Does this mean it's still legal to download other P2P software?
What's the point of this ruling?

Re:another judge with no clue (3, Insightful)

causality (777677) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474245)

What's the point of this ruling?

It's not quite pointless. The purpose seems to be the creation of a "sacred" status for copyright law, something that would cause anyone to think twice about creating anything that might have some indirect role in copyright infringement. In other words it's designed to intimidate, which explains why no allowance seems to have been made for the fact that peer-to-peer software can also have legitimate uses, like the distribution of Linux ISOs.

From the summary:

Earlier this year, at the behest of an anti-piracy group consisting of the usual suspects from the recording industry, a Brazilian court ruled that a company named Cadare Information Technology must implement a filter on the P2P software they distributed on their website to weed out copyrighted content. Cadare was unable comply with the order because they didn't develop the software; they merely offered it for download. The case went back to court, and a Brazilian judge has now decided to ban distribution of the software because it can be used to assist copyright infringement.

This is like banning hammers because some murderers have used them to bludgeon people to death, or banning cars because a few criminals have used them as getaway vehicles. It also ignores the infeasibility of successfully filtering all copyrighted content in all digital forms with no false positives or false negatives. Either those judges are morons who have no idea about the glaring flaws that are easily pointed out, or the absurdity of this ruling is a deliberate component of the Machiavellian "make an example of them" style of authoritarian thinking that seems to be universally exhibited by pro-copyright interests. In fact, the same could be said of the DMCA in the USA and the legislators who supported it.

Re:another judge with no clue (2, Insightful)

buchner.johannes (1139593) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474449)

It is one thing to pirate content, it is another to make money from pirated content.

This ruling is against the second, and the title wrongly suggests that all P2P software was banned, which would not make sense. Find a pointless discussion that the way of distributing content is irrelevant below.

Why just p2p? (2, Insightful)

KeithIrwin (243301) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474117)

Firefox gets used for piracy a lot too. Why not ban it?

I'm not really clear why the courts have been treating peer to peer software as different from client-server software. My best guess is that in a client-server model, they see the server as being responsible for the illegal content, but in the peer-to-peer model, they blame the software for the illegal content. Really, this doesn't make a bit of sense, especially in light of the fact that there is no technical distinction in any TCP/IP protocols which differentials which computers are "servers" from which are "clients" or "peers". It's just a model of network interaction which exists in the minds of the software developers and users.

I'm curious if this will change if and when judges understand the underlying technology better.

Re:Why just p2p? (1)

arbiter1 (1204146) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474145)

going from a a boarder view point, just loading a web page is a p2p connection, so why not just ba the whole internet.

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474185)

Ban the Internet! because it can be used to assist copyright infringement.

Re:Why just p2p? (1)

anton_kg (1079811) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474239)

Opera has p2p feature build-in. Why not ban it as well. It's getting into gray aria more and more.

Nice pun (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474615)

Opera has p2p feature build-in. Why not ban it as well.
It's getting into gray aria more and more.

Hahahahaha, nice one!!!

tmegapscm

Re:Why just p2p? (1)

powermung (780700) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475027)

so you do admit that there's a difference between a web browser and a p2p software. otherwise, you'd be saying bittorent inside the opera is just pointless redundant feature.

Re:Why just p2p? (4, Insightful)

shark72 (702619) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474243)

"I'm curious if this will change if and when judges understand the underlying technology better."

Statements like this are like Chicken Soup for the Pirate's Soul. We convince ourselves that it's all because the people in charge just don't understand the technology. I completely understand; this is a much more acceptable situation than the judges understanding the technology just fine.

There's a huge disconnect here. When Napster, Kazaa, Morpheus, and most recently The Pirate Bay went down, file-sharing fans quickly pointed out that it was obviously because the legal professionals don't know what they were doing. "Just like Google!" they shouted. "A web browser is P2P! Let's ban guns, too!".

The problem is this: I've read all of the rulings (I'm kind of a nerd like that) and it's generally clear that the lawyers and the judges understand the technology just fine. They might not be able to code a P2P client themselves or even mount a Linux volume, but reading the documents makes it very clear that they know exactly how the technology works and how it's being used.

You can use Occam's Razor here: it's a hard scenario to swallow that there simply aren't enough defense lawyers who understand P2P technology. If the law really worked like so many Slashdotters think it does -- a legal world in which intent and usage aren't relevant -- then wouldn't all of these judgments be thrown out once some legal folks as smart as you took up the cases and clearly showed that it was all a matter of the judge not understanding the technology? A simple matter of a smart person explaining to the appeal court that a pirate torrent site is just like Google, a P2P client is just like a web browser?

The ironic thing here is that if you ask any lawyer with a background in copyright law, they'll be happy to explain to you exactly why TPB, etc. aren't exactly like Google and why Kazaa and Morpheus weren't just like a web browser. It's actually even pretty easy to understand by folks who don't have a JD. Yet we collective Slashdotters just continue to stamp our metaphorical feet and pine for the day when judges just understand. "Substantial non-infringing uses," "contributory infringement," "vicarious infringement" and even basic principles like mens rea whoosh past us like a late summer breeze, while we close our eyes and dream of a day when legal professionals will finally be as smart as we are.

Re:Why just p2p? (2, Insightful)

MrMista_B (891430) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474295)

So, then, explain to me why it is impossible to use Google in a way that infringes copyright.

And, if you cannot, why then it is different from these other search providers.

You are incapable of doing so.

Re:Why just p2p? (3, Interesting)

whoever57 (658626) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474345)

So, then, explain to me why it is impossible to use Google in a way that infringes copyright.

And, if you cannot, why then it is different from these other search providers.

It has nothing to do with technical differences and everything to do with how the tools are used. Yes, P2P has legitimate uses and is used by many for legitimate trading of files. However, the dominant use is illegitimate trading of files.

Re:Why just p2p? (3, Interesting)

Totenglocke (1291680) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474435)

One of the dominate uses of the internet is viewing porn (not going into any potential copyright on said porn). Does that mean that the internet should be banned under existing obscenity laws?

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474567)

WHOA! Leave the porn out of this.

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474633)

Not in Brazil. Porn is an export crop there.

Re:Why just p2p? (3, Insightful)

mark-t (151149) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474477)

The only reason its dominant use is illegitimate trading of files is because it's popular, period.

Invent an efficient file transfer mechanism... one that can beat the efficiency of anything invented so far, and if it ever happens to catch on with any legitimate community, I can guarantee that it will also be appropriated by people who do not give regard for copyright, and in short order its predominant use would be for illegitimate file sharing.

Re:Why just p2p? (5, Informative)

shark72 (702619) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474347)

You're setting up a false premise here -- nobody believes that one can't use Google to infringe. We're all smart people here and we owe it to ourselves to not fall into these sort of silly traps.

If you're genuinely curious why "just like Google" doesn't work, Google on "substantial non-infringing uses." It's a fundamental legal test for contributory copyright infringement.

Turning it around, if you're wondering if Google and similar facilities are in danger of being held liable for the actions of their users, this is an important one to understand:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mens_rea [wikipedia.org]

Another critical thing to understand is that safe harbors (the DMCA being the most relevant) are, to mangle the metaphor, a two-way street. Yeah, they'll protect you, but only if you make use of them. For example, Google and many other sites honor DMCA takedown requests. If you're running a P2P site and you know that filtering out pirated material would put you out of business, you don't have the luxury of ignoring takedown requests simply because honoring them would affect your site's viability -- and excuses like "I'm too busy" or "I don't have the manpower to handle all those requests" don't hold any weight with the court. To take advantage of the DMCA safe harbor that Google and so many others enjoy, you must take active steps to make use of it.

That appears to be similar to what happened in the case described in the article.

HTH.

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

Totenglocke (1291680) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474447)

Sorry, but your anecdote about Google and takedown requests amused me. Google spent tons of money to buy YouTube, the once they had it, started removing most of the video that people watched. What was the point in buying it if they were going to just start killing off the business?

The only time I really go to YouTube anymore is for music videos......which it's fairly common for YouTube to take down. Eventually, I'll stop going to YouTube. I'm sure in some royally frakked up DMCA / RIAA / MPAA business sense that's a "viable model", but I don't see how removing incentives for people to use your product helps your business.

Re:Why just p2p? (1)

TheLink (130905) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474757)

Seems nowadays a fair number of music videos are allegedly posted by the official copyright holders.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2_HXUhShhmY [youtube.com]

http://www.youtube.com/user/coldplaytv [youtube.com] ?

I'm fine if youtube removes the zillions of redundant poorer quality videos. There's no need to have 100 copies of the same video especially when half are poor quality, a quarter are the wrong aspect - black borders, squished, cropped etc, and the rest are either stuffed full of ads, incomplete or actually rickrolls or other junk.

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474819)

instead of buying from manufacturers, if i stole it from them, i'd make more money.
hmm... you or the suits at google to run my business? sorry, but i'd take the suits at google any day over you. i think google is doing very well without your help.
there're tons of copyrighted materials on google uploaded by those who HOLD the copyrights. you're critical of google for abiding by the laws?

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474667)

when you put a road block, you do it in a specific place where it's high chance that you'll catch the guy of the law enforcement's interests. they're not interested in blocking every road that affects all other people. of course you can use google to infringe on someone's copyright. tell me if you have ONCE searched thepiratebay for general knowledge that didn't affect copyrights. seriously, you really can't tell the difference between searching google and these "other search providers"? you have to ask yourself if it's you or the legal professionals that really don't understand the technology.

Re:Why just p2p? (1)

KeithIrwin (243301) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474421)

It's not quite chicken soup anyway because it's intentionally a question. There's no reason to believe that it necessarily will get better if and when they understand the technology better. It's merely a possibility.

But frankly, no, they don't understand the technology. They get the basics of how it works, but they don't understand the ways in which it is similar or different from other technology. Having read a lot of the decisions, I've yet to see one which says, "Well, this can be used for infringement, but technologically, it's no different from other programs which are not used for infringement". There's a failure to recognize that many of the distinctions they're drawing separate how programs have been used rather than how they're designed.

To use a metaphor, if some particular car brand became a favorite of bank robbers, it would be ridiculous to go after the makers of that car. And yet the makers of software are being hauled into court based on the actions of their users, whether or not the software is designed specifically to be helpful in illegal acts. The bar for "contributory infringement" has been set very low in many cases, especially outside of the United States, this Brazilian case, for instance.

Now, of course, not all of these cases have been about the software. Many of them have hinged on the operation of servers which host or index pirated content. That's a pretty easy legal distinction to make.

But in at least some of the cases, the logic being applied is that the software is useful for piracy. Certainly that's been what's been behind the decision to ban "peer-to-peer software" on a lot of private networks. And yet, this same logic isn't applied to other technologies which have also been used for piracy like ftp, tftp, newsgroups or http.

The judges aren't idiots. They have a basic understand of what's going on and how these programs work, but they don't have a deep understanding of how the internet actual works. If they did, at least some of the decisions would have to be written quite differently. Whether or not this would have any impact on the conclusions is not clear.

Re:Why just p2p? (3, Insightful)

shark72 (702619) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474471)

"I've yet to see one which says, "Well, this can be used for infringement, but technologically, it's no different from other programs which are not used for infringement"."

But how would that be relevant -- and more to the point, how would it help the case?

Pirate tracker sites share much of the same technology as, say, legaltorrents.com. The latter gets a pass while the pirate sites go down because of things unrelated to technology: the actions and intent of the people running them. This is one of those fundamental legal things, unrelated to the level of technical experience of the person making the judgement.

"Certainly that's been what's been behind the decision to ban "peer-to-peer software" on a lot of private networks. And yet, this same logic isn't applied to other technologies which have also been used for piracy like ftp, tftp, newsgroups or http."

Because it's irrelevant. It's about actions and intent. And we should acknowledge the people who have been busted for serving up pirated files via http and ftp.

"The judges aren't idiots. They have a basic understand of what's going on and how these programs work, but they don't have a deep understanding of how the internet actual works. If they did, at least some of the decisions would have to be written quite differently."

Well, to be fair, your belief is a common one among Slashdotters: the problem is not that we don't sufficiently understand copyright law, but that nobody in authority -- not one person -- sufficiently understands the technology. If they did, then they'd throw out all of this "actions" and "intent" and "safe harbor" and "substantial non-infringing uses" mumbo jumbo and simply understand that since a warez tracker or Kazaa trades packets in much the same way as other technologies, then the operators can't be held liable.

Re:Why just p2p? (2, Insightful)

NickFortune (613926) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475121)

To use a metaphor, if some particular car brand became a favorite of bank robbers, it would be ridiculous to go after the makers of that car.

I think I'll play Devil's Advocate: Suppose someone made a car with bulletproof bodywork, a battering ram, and forward-mounted oxy-acetylene cutting torches. And then marketed it at people who "wanted to make some out-of-hours withdrawals from their local bank". Sure, you could use it to get the weekly shopping in, but you'd have a hard time arguing that such was the intention behind the vehicle.

That would seem to be closer to the mark in this case.

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

elashish14 (1302231) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474537)

The ironic thing here is that if you ask any lawyer with a background in copyright law

What the hell is this copyright law you speak of? You mean the one that's blatantly unconstitutional, completely senseless and meant to do nothing but back a defunct business model, right? The ones that a.) are there for no reason and b.) prevent a victimless crime?

America has completely lost it as far as copyright law is concerned. Why are they still enforcing these stupid laws when they're so utterly broken and unjust.

Re:Why just p2p? (1)

jamstar7 (694492) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474649)

America has completely lost it as far as copyright law is concerned. Why are they still enforcing these stupid laws when they're so utterly broken and unjust.

Because of the money, of course. The Usual Suspects believe that any time a file is shared they're losing out on revenue that is their God-given right to collect on forever and ever and ever, Amen.

Seriously, dood, you must be new here...

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474723)

Wasn't this court case in Brazil. I don't argue with most copyright laws being unconstitutional as far as America, but I don't know anything about Brazil laws.

Re:Why just p2p? (1)

petrus4 (213815) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474681)

Statements like this are like Chicken Soup for the Pirate's Soul. We convince ourselves that it's all because the people in charge just don't understand the technology. I completely understand; this is a much more acceptable situation than the judges understanding the technology just fine.

If there was anyone on the bench, anywhere, who wasn't of a sufficiently advanced age that senility is a serious risk, then I might be able to agree with the above statement.

The truly fear and depression induced thing about Slashdot, is just how many of its' readers appear to have drunk the government or corporate Kool-Aid with regard to things like copyright, and actively defend and advocate the government/cartel position.

You don't understand that all you're potentially doing, is hurting not only yourselves, but everyone else in the process.

Fanatical, suicidal corporate avarice and greed, ultimately doesn't end up serving anyone; including, long term, the corporations themselves.

Re:Why just p2p? (2, Insightful)

shark72 (702619) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474727)

"The truly fear and depression induced thing about Slashdot, is just how many of its' readers appear to have drunk the government or corporate Kool-Aid with regard to things like copyright, and actively defend and advocate the government/cartel position."

Don't look at me. I think copyright terms and (in particular) statutory limits are hugely of control. Understanding how something works certainly isn't drinking Kool-Aid. I'm agnostic about piracy; I certainly did enough of it when I was a teenager.

Disliking copyright law is no excuse for not understanding it. Notice how the same arguments keep coming up and Slashdotters keep getting surprised? The "it's just like Google" fallacy has been around for as long as Google itself, and yet people are still surprised that it's not a magic bullet.

The state of self-serving, willful ignorance of the basics of copyright law is pretty sad. If file-sharing enthusiasts want to change the law, first they must understand it. Tilting at windmills and counting on loopholes that only exist in the collective imagination of the file-sharing community won't help.

Re:Why just p2p? (1)

petrus4 (213815) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474907)

Disliking copyright law is no excuse for not understanding it. Notice how the same arguments keep coming up and Slashdotters keep getting surprised? The "it's just like Google" fallacy has been around for as long as Google itself, and yet people are still surprised that it's not a magic bullet.

The characteristic which isohunt.com and Google have in common, is the fact that they can both potentially be used to find both infringing and non-infringing information. In that sense, they are both neutral. I believe, "common carrier," is the phrase that is customarily used.

I can set up a torrent seed, and publicise it through isohunt, for FreeBSD's latest ISO file, (non-infringing) or I can likewise use it to publicise a seed for a DVD/CD rip of the latest Call of Duty game. (definitely infringing)

Likewise, I can go into my backyard garage with a few of my friends, come up with some original (or at least semi-original) musical score and lyrics, and then perform that, and publicise a seed for the resulting mp3 files which we might make from said jam session. Again, non-infringing if no prior copyright agreement has been made by me and said friends.

It also doesn't matter if the only thing isohunt has up on a given day is warez and porn, either; although looking at isohunt right now shows me that there are still numerous torrents for FreeBSD's files available at the moment anyway, so a court could never honestly claim that the only thing it is being used for is infringing information.

That actually brings up an important distinction between the mental process of corporations and pirates, as well. In the minds of the archetypical pirate, there is only one type of file. The distinction between infringing and non-infringing material is not even made at all. To pirates, FreeBSD's ISOs are no different from the aforementioned Call of Duty game; they're just another file.

That was the issue of this thread. The Brazilian court was trying to claim that the only thing that Bit Torrent can be used for is piracy, which is demonstrably false.

It possibly is true, on the other hand, to say that piracy is usually the main reason for Bit Torrent's existence, but saying that it literally cannot be used for non-infringing traffic as well is, as has been said numerous times in this thread, emotive, erroneous, and disturbing due to the potential degree of harm it could cause.

If morality is defined (as it almost certainly must be) as that which is mutually/reciprocally beneficial for the vast majority of individuals, (whether human or non-human, as in, animal) then the extent to which the RIAA and other such groups, wish to extend copyright enforcement, is demonstrably and visibly amoral; in fact enormously and monstrously so.

These organisations must, for the cause of overall human welfare, eventually be entirely defeated and destroyed, and we can only pray that eventually they will be.

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29475135)

Speaking of Occam's Razor, wouldn't you say the Pirate Bay judge's affiliation with lobby organizations seeking stricter copyright laws is relevant at all?

Re:Why just p2p? (1)

gilgongo (57446) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475239)

"Substantial non-infringing uses," "contributory infringement," "vicarious infringement" and even basic principles like mens rea whoosh past us like a late summer breeze

I don't doubt that you do understand the various subtleties of infringement, but the fact is that these principles are designed to support a system that is fundamentally unjust, anti-social, and culturally corrosive in the extreme.

Put it this way: if you knew as much about the history of copyright, and how a simple industrial regulation of the 1700's was transmogrified by greed into what we have now as a system to extract the maximum amount of money from all of us to line the pockets of a tiny number of staggeringly rich individuals, I doubt you'd be so keen to support something that (in my opinion) is basically state-sponsored usury. Usury which, I would add, is slowly twisting society into a place where it is impossible not to commit "intellectual property" crimes without expending great efforts, and one where large sections of the population are choosing to ignore this and other laws they see as similarly unjust because of it. This latter effect is the most worrying: imposing extremely draconian penalties for "crimes" that many people think are nothing of the kind leads to social effects that none of us want.

Do not defend the indefensible, however clever you may be about it.

Re:Why just p2p? (1)

psnyder (1326089) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474335)

I'm not really clear why the courts have been treating peer to peer software as different from client-server software.

Because most people (judges and juries included) don't understand what you just said.
So lawyers try to explain it to them while spinning the explanation towards their side.

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474407)

so it should be no big deal that only p2p software are banned. people will continue using firefox to download their linux distros.

Re:Why just p2p? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474457)

yeah, every time you want to catch a criminal on the road, put road blocks every freakin highway in the country to catch a guy you know is in a specific city.
they want to stop copyright infringements. i don't believe the punishment fits the crime either, but come on. most firefox users do not infringe on others' copyrights. most (i'm being very generous here) people using p2p software do. if you really can't tell whether bittorrent or firefox is better software for uploading/downloading illegally, you seriously can't call yourself techincally inclined.

sheesh (2, Insightful)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474123)

Ruining someone's life for 2-4 years because the Brazilian court system is dabbling in pre-crime... Kind of makes you wonder why society considers the copyright system an equitable trade...

Re:sheesh (2, Insightful)

jamstar7 (694492) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474143)

Ruining someone's life for 2-4 years because the Brazilian court system is dabbling in pre-crime... Kind of makes you wonder why society considers the copyright system an equitable trade...

Scary part of it is, something just like this can happen here in the States if the Usual Suspects decide to spend the money and buy up some more Congresscritters. Why buy off a judge to get a precident set when you can just buy the Congresscritters and get the laws you want passed?

Re:sheesh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474583)

Maybe I am missing something - but what's pre-crime about banning P2P software ? I have never used P2P software for anything but downloading music or movies - and in spite of all it's other uses, dont know one person who uses any of them for much else.

This is basically comparable to cities banning gun possession except that most people dont use guns to commit crime, while most - or almost all - use P2P software to pirate other's goods.

Re:sheesh (2, Insightful)

wizardforce (1005805) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474735)

when the law starts making tools illegal rather than going after the "crime" it becomes pre-crime: presumption of guilt by possession regardless of actual guilt. anyone that uses WOW, linux isos, ADV anime promotional materials (they use p2p to avertise their material), distribution of public domain/creative commons material etc. will lose out because the legal system chose to set a catch all trap to stop the evil pirates. the problem is that it is ineffective, feeds contempt for the law and negatively impacts people few or not that use p2p for its legal uses. it has gotten to the point where it isn't enough for these companies to sue actual infringers, now they're going after potential infringers wholesale. there is no justice in that, it is indefensible.

Re:sheesh (1)

metacell (523607) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475149)

If we follow that line of argument, we would also criticise the government for being pre-crime when it outlaws private possession of nuclear weapons and nerve gas. I think SOME tools should be illegal.

However, I do agree outlawing P2P software is ridiculous, because copyright infringement is not detrimental to people's health or society as a whole. The principle of proportionality states that a law must not impose more problems than it solves. Also, if someone suffers substantial damage through copyright infringement, the damage is possible to repair through legal action, as opposed to the damage of being exposed to lethal weapons.

Re:sheesh (0, Troll)

rohan972 (880586) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475055)

Ruining someone's life for 2-4 years because the Brazilian court system is dabbling in pre-crime...

I hope you are consistent enough with that thinking to also oppose gun bans.

Torrentfreak.com (1)

chicago_scott (458445) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474129)

Torrentfreak.com. Real news for real people.

Re:cacaotv.com (1)

lapinmalin (1400199) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474167)

cacaotv.com the real deal

Guess he'll have to ban the Internet... (3, Funny)

meerling (1487879) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474131)

Guess he'll have to ban the Internet...
      "...because it can be used to assist copyright infringement..."

Re:Guess he'll have to ban the Internet... (1)

atmtarzy (1267802) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474161)

and computers and keyboard and mice and printers and paper and pencils and markers and charcoal and papyrus and ...

Re:Guess he'll have to ban the Internet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474501)

why stop there? how about banning computers?
like someone said before, would you put a road block on every highway when you know the guy you want to catch is on a specific road?
they're not interested in banning people from driving on the road. they just want to stop the guys who happens to be on the road doing illegal stuff.
just come out and say you like downloading stuff for free using p2p software. don't pretend you stand on a higher moral ground, or think judges are idiots for not banning the internet. banning the internet would truly be stupid.

Re:Guess he'll have to ban the Internet... (1)

seeker_1us (1203072) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475093)

And xerox machines.

Guess he'll have to ban the Internet... "...because it can be used to assist copyright infringement..."

Re:Guess he'll have to ban the Internet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29475207)

And brains.

International law without International governance (1)

hawkingradiation (1526209) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474133)

Good to see they are keeping it real down there in Brazil.

Why just software? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474139)

My God! kitchen knives can be used to assist murder...let's ban them!

Re:Why just software? (2, Informative)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474155)

UK already did that.

Re:Why just software? (1)

aj50 (789101) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475143)

More relevantly, the UK and the US already ban tools which can be used to bypass an effective copy protection mechanism.

P2P Software Bans Brazilian Court (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474177)

It's only fair.

Why stop there.......... (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474187)

Let's ban all computers while we're at it too "because it can be used to assist copyright infringement". And without a computer I won't be able to run the software. Oh and we need to collect money everytime a person sings a song in their head. Because the record label is not being paid for the content since you heard it on the radio and just kept replaying it in your head. We'll put chips in your heads to monitor what songs you've played in your head every month and send you a bill on itunes.

Re:Why stop there.......... (1)

boarder8925 (714555) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475183)

Bill 'em in iTunes, eh? I'd be ok with that--if computers were banned I wouldn't be able to pay through iTunes!

This just in... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474191)

Stone has been banned in Brazil because someone once wrote some things on it and it can therefore be used for copyright infringement. Other implements such as the stylus and clay tablet are also under consideration.

RKB

In wake of ruling, ISP's set shutdown date. (1)

plasmacutter (901737) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474203)

The internet in its entirety is "p2p" by nature. This is what differentiates it from TV, radio, or any other medium for that matter, and it is provided "for profit", by these shady companies called "internet service providers".

This judge has just ruled his nation into the stone age, placing it behind even remote african villages in terms of telecom structure.

I predict a large number of ISP's dragged into court and shut down using this precedent.

A common (American) misconception... (2, Informative)

Inf0phreak (627499) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474265)

Precedent [wikipedia.org] is a common law [wikipedia.org] thing. Brazil - and pretty much the rest of South America - has a civil law [wikipedia.org] system. The common law article even has a link to a neat picture: Legal systems of the world [wikipedia.org] .

Only on One State of the Countrw (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474251)

This only apply on the Brazilian State of Paranà as the process happened there, it is not a Federal decision.

Some people say the next thing Paranà will ban are cars, as a lot of people die because they use it as you may crash when you drive one of those damn things!

It's as logical as castrating judge (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474273)

Should the judge be castrated, because his penis can be used for rape?

Re:It's as logical as castrating judge (1)

jamstar7 (694492) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474675)

Should the judge be castrated, because his penis can be used for rape?

I know women who believe that. Never bothered dating them, they were just too weird for me...

Re:It's as logical as castrating judge (1)

Bob_Who (926234) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474815)

Only while attached to a bone head. If thinking is involved, its called begging.

He'd better ban hammers (1)

cryfreedomlove (929828) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474287)

Sure, a hammer can be used for legitimate purposes but we all know how deadly a hammer can be when you want to hurt somebody. Ban hammers now so we'll all be safer.

Re:He'd better ban hammers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474557)

apparently, you do know that hammer has a legitimate purpose.
now answer me this. what is the legitimate purpose of a p2p software? and, what percentage of its use is for that legitimate use?
if i knew that a specific brand of hammer was used 99.9% of the time for hurting people, i'd have no problem banning it.

Re:He'd better ban hammers (1)

jamstar7 (694492) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474691)

now answer me this. what is the legitimate purpose of a p2p software? and, what percentage of its use is for that legitimate use?

I'm not a gamer, but there are a couple MMOs that use p2p to issue game updates and such.

Re:He'd better ban hammers (1)

powermung (780700) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475019)

so what's the percentage of those legitimate p2p uses? i'm pretty sure the game companies can come up with p2p functions inside their games that'll allow patching but will still be called a game and not a p2p software.

Time to ban energy (2, Interesting)

IsMyNameTaken (1362911) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474323)

Well, lets see...

CD burners: only pirates use those to make copies of disks

DVR: makes illegal copies of shows

MP3/4 players: plays copies that are likely illegal

blank media: odds are it is going to be used to make illegal copies

mass storage: who needs over a few MEG, any more and you must be using it to store illegal music/movies/software

printer: you could print out books cutting out the publisher

computers: used to copy music/movies/software and share them

email/mail/pigeons with flash drives: used to send illegal copies

When it comes right down to it the only way to stop anything from "assist[ing] copyright infringement" is to ban all energy, without movement data cannot be transferred hence no copies! Now how much energy will it take to cool Brazil down to absolute zero?

I see a loophole... (1)

MoFoQ (584566) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474375)

so...basically, the download page for the p2p software can't have any advertising.

(wonder if the judge mentioned whether or not the website can't have ads at all...or just "alongside"...anyone speak/read Portuguese?)

either way, I still think that's stupid logic....streets are used for a multitude of law-breaking purposes, including copyright infringement (how do you think people transport counterfeit goods? an Asgard teleporter?), not to mention, prostitution, kidnapping, drug-running.

And by that logic...the government not only builds and maintains (except in my city...where the pot holes can scare the shit out of Russia pot holes) roads, they collect monies for them (either thru gas taxes or tolls, etc.) and thus profiting from crime...

Correct "translation" of facts (3, Informative)

kusanagi374 (776658) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474433)

I'm brazilian and I've read Internet Legal's press release about this (which is a bit like EFF), and what the judge actually prohibits is showing ads FOR THE SOFTWARE. The website in question (www.iplay.com.br) displayed ads which, according to the judge, implied that the software was meant for illegal file sharing.

Also, what happened here is that a second judge REVERSED the decision made by the first one, that said P2P applications are like knifes: you can use it for good OR evil, and there's nothing the maker can do about it. The second judge compared the P2P software to an establishment that sells both drugs (illegal) and soda pop (legal): even if legal products are available, the correct thing to do is to shut everything down.

in pt-br: http://www.internetlegal.com.br/2009/09/tjpr-decide-que-e-ilicito-o-uso-de-software-p2p-para-baixar-musicas-pela-internet/ [internetlegal.com.br]

in english (courtesy of google): http://translate.google.com.br/translate?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.internetlegal.com.br%2F2009%2F09%2Ftjpr-decide-que-e-ilicito-o-uso-de-software-p2p-para-baixar-musicas-pela-internet%2F&sl=pt&tl=en&hl=pt-BR&ie=UTF-8 [google.com.br]

Right on, ban P2P! (1)

headkase (533448) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474379)

Whoa there, hold on a sec before modding down! =D. Peer-to-Peer does have legal uses but the fact is that in the majority of uses it is for copyright infringement. Copyright is a good thing. It keeps people from stealing GNU software for example - they can't copy and close someone else's effort. I believe in Open and I ultimately believe that Open in general will prevail. P2P is slowing this inevitability. When someone steals a Closed product they are diminishing the demand and therefore development of Open alternatives. The Open world as a matter of principle should be against all infringing uses of effort as copyright is also at its core. Open provides a vibrant alternative to todays corporate wasteland, the Freedom to remix effort is the way of the future and the sooner society locks-in to Open the better. Peer-to-Peer's role today does not respect the licenses the creators wish to use. If you believe in Open then you must let Closed people have their way as well even if they are ultimately mis-guided. Both Open and Closed rely on the same foundation of copyright. Open will win but in the meantime kicking Closed in the nuts through infringement isn't helping anyone.

Re:Right on, ban P2P! (1)

SteveFoerster (136027) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474419)

Both Open and Closed rely on the same foundation of copyright.

Yes, which is why some of use use public domain dedications and the CC0 waiver rather than those "some rights reserved" licenses.

Re:Right on, ban P2P! (1)

headkase (533448) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474439)

Some rights are reserved as protection in todays landscape from predators. Hopefully we'll see a day when as you say it is just unnecessary. BSD for the win!

Re:Right on, ban P2P! (2, Informative)

Totenglocke (1291680) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474493)

Sorry, but I disagree. Why? Because OSS doesn't always provide what people want since it's made by nerds coding software that THEY want, not what the users want. For example. I'm a gamer (among other things) so I need Windows. If I pirated it (I don't, but this is hypothetical), it wouldn't be "slowing the progress of Linux" because, as great as Linux is, it's not good for gaming. Yes, I've run games in Wine, but until everything runs fine and it's easier to install games than it is for Kanye to piss people off, Linux will never be a gaming OS. That will probably never happen because most of the people writing Linux aren't gamers.

I've had my laptop Linux only for awhile, but my desktop never will be because the people writing code for Linux (generally speaking) couldn't give a rats ass about what I want in an OS. So, as much as I like OSS and think it will gain a much bigger market share over the next decade (due to smart phones and netbooks getting people used to it), I don't think OSS will ever "win" because it's not focused on the users desires, only the coders desires.

Re:Right on, ban P2P! (1)

Andorin (1624303) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474545)

Now, hang on a second. A few things about this. First, I agree that free software (not simply "open source" software) is a good thing and we need more of it. However, I am not so easily convinced that free software is /enough/ of a good thing to prevent the drastic reform of modern copyright. Yes, free software is good. However, proprietary stuff and maximalist copyright control are VERY bad. They are bad enough to outweigh the benefits from the GPL and other free licenses. I am a free software supporter, but despite this, I would rather see the record labels and publishing companies and such lose the massive power they have. Besides, even if Debian were to pass into the public domain, I doubt it would turn proprietary. ;) (I run Debian.)

Anyway. For this, and other reasons, I don't think we should ban p2p software. Yes, it is primarily used for copyright infringement- but in my eyes, this is more the fault of our copyright laws than the p2p users who violate these laws. These laws are outdated and desperately in need of fixing, in order to reflect the will of people in these modern times. p2p software helps show the rest of the world what those people want: less copyright, basically.

Also, doesn't p2p provide a benefit to FOSS in that it is more easily distributed? I, for one, much prefer to download my GNU/Linux distros via BitTorrent.

Whoa. Nice way to get bribes? (2, Informative)

No Eye Deer (1377323) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474393)

I haven't been following WOW at all, but don't they use BitTorrent for distributing their updates? Will they ban Opera for including BitTorrent support in their browser too? Imagine all the lobbying required for application vendors to have their P2P-enabled software to be "legal".

Links to more illegal software (2, Insightful)

noidentity (188756) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474511)

So all of the following are now illegal in Brazil, since they can be used to assist copyright infringement: Firefox [mozilla.com] , Internet Explorer [microsoft.com] , Opera [opera.com] , Safari [apple.com] , Windows [microsoft.com] , Mac OS X [apple.com] , Linux [linux.org] , Filezilla [filezilla-project.org] , the cp Unix command [wikipedia.org] , etc.

Re:Links to more illegal software (1)

mykos (1627575) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474593)

Don't forget pens and paper!

Re:Links to more illegal software (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474729)

The Blizzard WOW updater is a bittorrent client. So the main way of downloading those sometimes massive patches is illegal .

Can't let you communicate that, Dave (2, Insightful)

mykos (1627575) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474519)

It's a dangerous place to be when governments tell people what they can and can't communicate and how they may or may not communicate that information. Every other industry adapts to market conditions except the content industries. All they do is lobby governments so that they can maintain their business model and not go the way of the wagon wheel makers.

THIS IS NOT A FEDERAL RESOLUTION!!! (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29474643)

This is not equivalent to a federal law in Brazil, and is not a federal resolution. Only after this case reach the supreme court and after the supreme court agree with this resolution will be possible to say that P2P file sharing softwares are illegal in Brazil. This was just a 1st instance case, and the 1st instance in Brazil for complex cases like that, or anything related to Internet, says a lot of crap. The only thing that this decision says for the future, is that in future similar cases this resolution can be a guide for a judge, if it want, and if one of the lawyers make a reference to this case. And until the case is closed, in other words, after all the appeal rounds of all the parts in the case ends, no one can make a reference of this case for future cases since it doesn't have a final resolution yet.

I thought they we called Bakini Bras.... (1)

Bob_Who (926234) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474795)

Either way, topless, p2p, whatever. Each morality has his priorities. Considering RIO climate, I support the motion by the ocean. Let freedom ring with butt floss, forget the p2p at Carnival!! ......Aaaarrrghhhh!!

This is unfair (1)

zeeshan809 (1637627) | more than 5 years ago | (#29474941)

Pushing the P2P users to the wall by banning such companies is noly going to result in negative and more such sites would pop up. http://next-world-war.blogspot.com/ [blogspot.com]

burn the forest..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29475003)

Couldn't a pencil also as be used to "assist copyright infringement" ????

If the "What about Google?" defense doesn't work.. (0, Offtopic)

nausicaa (461792) | more than 5 years ago | (#29475091)

... because most users of P2P-software use it for copyright infringement.. Then how about we ban guns?

I don't have any hard numbers, but lets look at how many people actually use them to comit crimes vs. how many use them for legitimate purposes, such as hunting, or actually preventing a crime..

After that's done, we could look at the same ratio for people who aren't cops or soldiers. And byt this I also mean the times when they are off-duty.

Just to make things more interesting, lets say that aggression, state-sponsored terror and the like, are also crimes (which they indeed are).. How many legit uses did you say there were for guns?

Oh, and yes, this does include stuff done by 'the good guys' of the world. Most countries have war crimes on their conscience.

Now, don't get your panties in a bunch because I'm talking about guns, or, even worse, because you feel I'm talking about things done by specific countries. Keep on track; this is about using an example in another scenario :P

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