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File Sharing Remains a Perk of College Life

kdawson posted more than 4 years ago | from the ain't-nobody's-business-if-i-do dept.

Education 288

An anonymous reader points out a story on the effect of a new law on file sharing on campuses — in short, it may not make much difference. "Students who are about to graduate often hand down the tricks of stealing music and movies to the next senior class. ... At the College of New Jersey, that means surreptitiously finding a new home each year for a computer holding an enormous directory of illegal files on the campus. ... The machine runs software called Direct Connect, which lets people on a local network easily trade files among their hard drives in a way that is usually undetectable to anyone outside the network. ... Educause recently unveiled a website with information about the new regulations. It provides case studies from six 'role-model campuses,' listing the steps they are taking to combat piracy. Another page lists 57 legal sources of music and movies on the Web. But when asked which campuses have forged new policies in reaction to the law, Educause officials were unable to name any."

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not going to work (5, Insightful)

stonewallred (1465497) | more than 4 years ago | (#31888902)

You are never going to stop folks from trading files. All you can do is try and make it difficult. And that brings its own problems because it usually causes the stuff not to work well and attracts people who like challenges to break your "protection". I believe the model of charging less would work better.

Re:not going to work (1)

negRo_slim (636783) | more than 4 years ago | (#31888954)

You are never going to stop folks from trading files.

Exactly music is a service and should be treated as such, that's why I like to say I purchase tickets not albums.

Re:not going to work (3, Insightful)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889010)

Exactly music is a service and should be treated as such, that's why I like to say I purchase tickets not albums.

And what about when the music cannot be taken around on tour? Not all music is performed by small bands that can go from venue to venue. There are for electronic works for tape created at places like IRCAM. Sometimes concerts are so costly to put on that ticket prices are unlikely to cover the expenses -- I've gone to hear music at concert halls where it's hard to believe that ticket sales even paid for the huge amount of people hired for the venue's coat check, let alone the orchestra.

Some amount of public subsidy and patronage is already present to support music that either can't be put on in concert, or isn't profitable to put on in concert. As it becomes increasingly less realistic for artists to expect payment for every copy made of their work, it's worth supporting public subsidy and patronage models at the same time as calling for people to buy tickets to see their favourite rock bands in concert.

Re:not going to work (-1, Flamebait)

negRo_slim (636783) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889186)

And what about when the music cannot be taken around on tour?

Then it's not worth listening to.

Re:not going to work (4, Interesting)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889238)

Then it's not worth listening to.

Bull.
Mike Oldfield. Multiple instruments, multiple tracks, all played by one individual. You cannot do that live.

Now...if you want to say "he sucks", that's ok, you can do that. But other peoples tastes differ.

Re:not going to work (3, Informative)

st0rmshad0w (412661) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889394)

Wasn't Nine Inch Nail's first stuff all originally done by Reznor in the studio?

Hire a band for crying out loud.

Re:not going to work (5, Insightful)

manicb (1633645) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889552)

Trent Reznor is a very talented man. What about musicians who are weak performers while a genius in the studio? People who suffer from serious anxiety problems? People whose target demographic is small and distributed across the world? There are plenty of very capable live bands out there who are having trouble pulling in big enough crowds ends meet, and we're supposed to believe that every niche electronic act can put a show together and do the same?

Re:not going to work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31890152)

Sometimes, you're just not going to make it.

Re:not going to work (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889450)

bullshit. mike oldfield has toured from 1997 to 2008. it just takes more people than his albums.

Re:not going to work (1)

Dravik (699631) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889888)

If there aren't enough people that like him to cover the costs of his work, then he sucks. The whole problem with public subsidies in any and all areas is that anyone who needs one shouldn't get one, and those who could make good use of the money don't need it.

Re:not going to work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889964)

WTF does any of the above have to do with public subsidies, fer crying out loud?

As a full-time geek and practicing professional musician, I oppose that type of "spreading the wealth around" as much as anyone. But seriously, WTF?

(BTW, I personally don't sell enough CDs or tickets to cover the cost of my musical work. Doesn't mean I "suck," dude.)

Re:not going to work (1)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890014)

If there aren't enough people that like him to cover the costs of his work, then he sucks.

It's easy for a lot of people to claim that, but if suddenly all the works supported by public funding suddenly disappeared, then a lot of them without be happy, because public support of the arts goes into more than you suspect. Think about classic cinema, e.g. Bergman or Fellini: eventually these films attracted a following, but they couldn't have been made to begin with without some amount of support. Even in the US where subsidy isn't as popular, figures like Jim Jarmusch got support from local and state governments for their films. It's the same with music. Iannis Xenakis' tape piece Le legende d'Eer wowed audiences in Paris when it was premiered in a specially-built venue at the Pompidou Center, but Xenakis would have never been able to spend hundreds of hours in the studio putting it together without support. Finns recognize Jean Sibelius as a key part of their culture and support keeping his memory alive, but regularly performing his demanding works is hard to accomplish with subsidy.

Subsidies don't just go to hacks and charlatans with no following. They have resulted in a lot of the universally appreciated Western canon.

Re:not going to work (1)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890178)

then a lot of them without be happy,

Sorry, that should read wouldn't be happy.

Re:not going to work (1)

daver00 (1336845) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890024)

Bollocks you can't! A professional musician that does this will just hire a band, its extremely common. Lenny Kravitz, Trent Reznor, Billy Corgan, all do this, and so on and so forth.

The parent is right, if they can't play it live, or even press play on a laptop and dance around a bit, then they are not performers. If you are not providing a service, you are dependent on a model which no longer makes sense. Turn of last century, recording was non-existent, and music was a service not a product. Recording was costly, hence a product was sold, and actual physical product. Now we're in a new setting, but basically music as a product just doesn't work anymore.

Re:not going to work (1)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890100)

The parent is right, if they can't play it live, or even press play on a laptop and dance around a bit, then they are not performers.

It's sad that your conception of music is so small that you think it necessarily has to involve "dancing around".

With tape pieces, it's hard to attract audiences to buy tickets and hear it out on the town when the work is invariable: there is no difference hearing it in a venue and hearing it from a disc or off downloaded files, especially now that many classic tape pieces are available in surround-sound DVD-Audio or SACD recordings and people can have an appropriate speaker setup in their living rooms. Again, the claim that all one has to do to support musicians is buy tickets just doesn't cover the whole diversity of the arts.

Re:not going to work (1)

toriver (11308) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890260)

Sure you can, you just hire other musicians to play the other instruments. This is not rocket science to figure out.

Re:not going to work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889356)

Small bands should perform on smaller tours like restaurants, hotels. No matter what, if their music is good, they will get paid.

Re:not going to work (1)

manicb (1633645) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889568)

Small bands should perform on smaller tours like restaurants, hotels. No matter what, if their music has wide appeal, they will get paid.

FTFY

Re:not going to work (1)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889468)

that's why I like to say I purchase tickets not albums

I like to listen to audiobooks, some of which are 20 or more hours long and are read by a single skilled actor who 'plays' all the differnt voices of the different characters. Do I purchase tickets to a 20 hour performance?

Re:not going to work (1)

ooshna (1654125) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890010)

Audiobooks are different from Music on CDs. And there are people who do that stuff live though its abridged.

Re:not going to work (3, Insightful)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 4 years ago | (#31888966)

You don't need 100% success to have a victory. Sure people will still do it, but if you don't make it easy for them to do it less people will go ahead and do it any ways. If you make file sharing so hard that only the geeks can do it. Then that is enough to stop all the non-geeks.

But they're making it easier (4, Insightful)

Rix (54095) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889038)

The Napster/Grokster lawsuits spawned BitTorrent. Killing suprnova caused a bloom of (better) torrent aggregator sites.

Excessive use of antibiotics just gets you antibiotic resistant strains.

Re:But they're making it easier (1)

DesScorp (410532) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890132)

The Napster/Grokster lawsuits spawned BitTorrent. Killing suprnova caused a bloom of (better) torrent aggregator sites.

Excessive use of antibiotics just gets you antibiotic resistant strains.

Interesting that you compare piracy to disease. Freudian slip?

Re:But they're making it easier (2, Funny)

Spad (470073) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890194)

That's evolution, baby.

Re:not going to work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889082)

But then the geeks make it easier for the non-geeks as a both a philanthropic gesture, according to their cool internet piracy politics boards, and an effort to "fit in" as the pirated music distributor.

It's the cirrrcle of liiiife...

Re:not going to work (1)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889044)

College kids are learning something at school? Excellent! Oh, it's how to glom files while outsmarting "the man"? Hmm, well, not so excellent ... but it will come in handy when they're in the corporate world having to steal customers from competitors and steal ideas from their colleagues to get promotions.

Re:not going to work (3, Insightful)

Skapare (16644) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889258)

... causes the stuff not to work well and attracts people who like challenges to break your "protection"

At least for many, breaking the "protection" is not the goal ... making stuff work well is. If the people making DRM were to come up with a way that provided the "protection" they (claim) to desire, while also working well on every platform, there wouldn't be as much interest in "breaking" it.

As a user exclusively of FOSS platforms, I consider that every content provider that fails to make sure that my platforms are supported is a content provider that has no interest in revenues from me or other users of these platforms. As such, if WE somehow manage to access their content through means that don't involve any payment, I see no loss to the owner. They didn't have sufficient interest in our money to make an effort to get it. So it is by their own decision that they won't get revenue from us; now ours.

Re:not going to work (1)

Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889308)

Lowering Prices is the solution.

The market is there... they just cant afford the current prices.

I wonder if anyone has done the math on this... but if you lowered the price of Photoshop to $50... would it create more profit than at its current price $669? (amazon)

At $60, Modern Warfare 2 made around 1.3 Billion dollars, and they continue to sell new copies...

I would imagine that the amount of people that use photoshop out number those who play Modern Warfare 2. Even the most of casual users who dont even have photoshop skills...

It just seems like there is a lot of money to be made if only they lowered prices on software. The market is there. Everyone has a computer.... the problem is that they cant afford all of the software.

Again has anyone done the math? Is it possible that selling more units, at a lower price would earn more profit?

On face value it would seem to be so.

Re:not going to work (1)

manicb (1633645) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889628)

Those people should be buying Photoshop Elements, Pixelmator, Paint Shop Pro and other software pitched around that price point. There are plenty of alternatives to piracy.

Re:not going to work (2, Insightful)

TheJediGeek (903350) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889886)

But the general public won't buy the alternatives. The mass computer-using public has only heard "photoshop" to the point it's a verb not unlike google. Most people will want to get Photoshop because everyone knows that's how you edit pictures. Anything else just sounds like the salesman trying to sell some cheap crap. When the average non-techie computer user looks for Photoshop and sees it for over $600, they won't look for alternatives to purchase. They'll find their nearest computer nerd friend who can get a pirated copy. Everyone uses computers these days. The non-tech people that use computers follow the marketing and mass media: The iPod is the first digital music player ever, any other kind is someone trying to copy Apple. Google is the first search engine, bing is the new guy. Photoshop is the only way to edit digital pictures, anything else won't do it right.

We tech people know there are viable alternatives, but the general public don't. Hence there is a valid question to be asked if the "mainstream" marketed software would do well to have affordable alternatives. How many people would buy a legal copy of Office if the new version of Word, Excel, and Power Point could be bought for a reasonable price? (Historically, this was not the case, but MS did release a 3 license pack of Office 2007 that was only Word, Excel, and Power Point for home users priced sub $200.) Software Piracy could likely dramatically drop if the "household name" products were priced at better price points.

Re:not going to work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889766)

I wonder if anyone has done the math on this... but if you lowered the price of Photoshop to $50... would it create more profit than at its current price $669? (amazon)

You would need more than an order of magnitude increase in sales. And these sales will all have to come from home users, because professionals are already buying Photoshop. Maybe that price would indeed be incentive enough for Joe Digicam. I don't know.

But even if you get enough sales to recoup the price drop, your distribution and support costs will increase, so you have to generate even more sales to cover those costs. Then you have to worry about the UI, because suddenly you have a giant portion of the user base who wants a more user-friendly experience. The entire focus of your software shifts towards consumers instead of content creators. The product becomes dumbed-down and unusable for the very customer base that was buying it at $700 a pop, so they look elsewhere. Congratulations, your flagship image editing program is now Paint Shop Pro.

Re:not going to work (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890134)

I wonder if anyone has done the math on this... but if you lowered the price of Photoshop to $50... would it create more profit than at its current price $669? (amazon)

No. Common people don't need Photoshop. Most would still pirate it and spend the $50 elsewhere. Professionals who need it can afford it, usually (mostly companies). So there's no point in lowering Photoshop.

Re:not going to work (4, Interesting)

YourExperiment (1081089) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889900)

You are never going to stop folks from trading files.

I don't know. You could always name and shame a particular college on the front page of Slashdot, citing the exact method that the students use to share files. That'd probably do enough to drop a few people in the shit.

Re:not going to work (1)

budfields (1663047) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890074)

The phrase "drop in the bucket" comes to mind. Drop in the ocean, even.

In other news (4, Insightful)

DMiax (915735) | more than 4 years ago | (#31888914)

Copyright infringement remains different from stealing. As in "we will stop stealing when you stop calling it stealing".

Re:In other news (4, Informative)

1336 (898588) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889148)

"Copying is not theft.
Stealing a thing leaves one less left
Copying it makes one thing more;
that's what copying's for."

Source: http://questioncopyright.org/minute_memes/copying_is_not_theft [questioncopyright.org]

Re:In other news (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889322)

The reason the media distributors call it theft isn't because copying removes the product from the rightful owner. It's because copying removes the MONOPOLY from the "rightful" owner. When you copy something whose copyrights belongs to someone else, you are destroying their monopoly on distribution. However, I figure that since you don't obtain the monopoly for yourself when you do this, it's still not theft -- it's more akin to vandalism or willful destruction of (private?) property ;)

Questions/Comments?

(captcha = "entitled")

Re:In other news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889756)

It's more akin to copyright infringement.

Re:In other news (0, Troll)

kz45 (175825) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889770)

"Copyright infringement remains different from stealing. As in "we will stop stealing when you stop calling it stealing"."

Why don't you come up with another excuse? When one excuse doesn't work anymore, copyright infringers will always have another to justify why they deserve something for free.

Copyright infringement isn't stealing. It's counterfeiting, which is worse. When you steal a physical product, like a tv, the company that makes it can still sell more tvs.

When there is mass counterfeiting of music, software, or games, it has the potential to destroy the original business. If piracy is not prevented, people get the idea that it's okay to just get your stuff for free. Over time, this will devalue it because most IP is only worth what people are willing to pay.

When Napster first came out, people said that the artists weren't making enough money and that albums were way too expensive (this is why they downloaded music for free). Now that any artist can make a living online without a recording contract and you can pretty much get any song for 99 cents or less on services like iTunes, there are a whole new set of excuses.

The community won't be happy until there are no restrictions on all music, books, software, and games and it's all free (costing $0), which is pretty fucking selfish.

Re:In other news (1)

DMiax (915735) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890148)

Stealing is better because it leaves the company unharmed (while hurting the individual)? What kind of reasoning is that?

I just wanted to point out that trying to confuse the two is counterproductive. People feels that there is no harm done in pirating things and all the industry looks silly in comparison. Same reason that if one law is disproportionate every law seems disproportionate.

As for games I stopped paying and playing when I switched to linux a lot of time ago. I only buy music on magnatune after many plays. I cannot avoid hearing big labels' music everywhere on the street so I feel compelled to have it. Seeing the profits of the industry I have a hard time feeling guilty.

Distribution is overpriced nowadays. Just deal with it.

Only works on campus... (1)

Neffirithion (950526) | more than 4 years ago | (#31888926)

I know its stated in TFA, but such regulations only effect on campus students, and at a school like mine, that's only about 5-10% of the total student body. So this regulation most likely has absolutely no effect on 90% of the students. And even the freshmen on campus know the ways around it, one of my friends always just uses the wireless of his off campus fraternity house to do all of his illegal downloading.

Re:Only works on campus... (1)

RapmasterT (787426) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889052)

I know its stated in TFA, but such regulations only effect on campus students, and at a school like mine, that's only about 5-10% of the total student body. So this regulation most likely has absolutely no effect on 90% of the students. And even the freshmen on campus know the ways around it, one of my friends always just uses the wireless of his off campus fraternity house to do all of his illegal downloading.

Before reading this article, and your post as well, I had no idea that college students were so F'ing clueless and helpless. For even 10% of the student body to feel in any way limited by these regulations baffles me to no end.

And yet (1)

kyrio (1091003) | more than 4 years ago | (#31888944)

the sharing of digital media will go on.

sneakernet filesharing (5, Insightful)

Rob Bos (3399) | more than 4 years ago | (#31888952)

If nothing else, there's always USB keys. Now pushing 128GB. My coworkers and I trade entire television shows pretty regularly.

Who needs fileservers? Sneakernet is becoming more and more efficient.

Re:sneakernet filesharing (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889104)

TV shows? That's not cutting into their (the rights' holder) profit now, is it?

Re:sneakernet filesharing (1)

imperious_rex (845595) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889508)

USB drives?? Think bigger. A 1 TB external HD is far more effective if physical size and convenience of portability are less of a concern. I'm sure many co-workers and college dorm students already share files via external hard drives.

Re:sneakernet filesharing (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889520)

Bring your portable deskside tower with the three 2TB hard drives and the pair of gigabit ethernets to a gamer meet, sometime. Just be sure you are properly configured for IPv6 for the premium stuff.

True. File sharing is to college (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31888978)

what Trolltalk [planetperplex.com] is to slashdot.

Ok. Maybe not. But what matters is - TROLLTALK IS BACK YOU COCKSMOKING FAGGOTS! [planetperplex.com]

Re:True. File sharing is to college (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889026)

Nice url, fag. This [goat.cx] is what mcdonald's 'terrace' really looked like after he had that farm [slashdot.org] .

That's basically what we did (4, Interesting)

IICV (652597) | more than 4 years ago | (#31888982)

That's basically what we did when I went to college. Someone would host the DC++ server, and everyone else would connect to it and share files over it. You had to have 1 GB of shared files to join.

ResNet didn't give a shit, and in fact for a couple of years the guy who hosted the server was about as high up in ResNet as a student can get. We were using a ton of bandwidth, but as long as it was on the internal on-campus network they didn't care. In fact, I heard that we were kind of wink-and-nudge supported by the actual network administrators - college students are going to pirate stuff anyway, so they'd far prefer we do it on the local network, and leave the gathering of new materials to guys who'll use a VPN to a dedicated usenet box.

Re:That's basically what we did (5, Insightful)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889192)

At my school, we just used SMB shares. This article reminds me of the time we were discussing the possibility of building a machine to replace that of a graduating senior, just so the location of his massive Simpsons collection wouldn't change. I also remember very fondly when I heard in conversation that my machine was down over the weekend - from a person I had never met before, and who didn't know when he mentioned it that he was talking about my machine.. When your computer is known by people before you yourself are, that's an achievement. :)

So really, all this article has accomplished is to fill my Sunday afternoon with waves of happy nostalgia. Was I supposed to be shocked and outraged?

Re:That's basically what we did (0, Troll)

/dev/trash (182850) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889632)

No, you should be in jail.

Re:That's basically what we did (1)

bigstrat2003 (1058574) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890284)

I wouldn't say jail is merited, but yeah, what I did was wrong. On the other hand, now that I have the means, I buy good movies/games/music. It was simply that at the time, I was broke (as is pretty much any college student), so I couldn't buy these things the way I wanted to (and yes, I did want to).

None of this changes the fact that it was a lot of fun, though.

Re:That's basically what we did (1)

hipp5 (1635263) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890272)

When your computer is known by people before you yourself are, that's an achievement.

When I was in res one of the guys on my floor was a big purveyor of porn on DC++. I'm not sure he actually ever added to the collection, but he was certainly the central repository for anything that got added. Anyway, my friends and I were talking about him at a party and this guy comes up and says, "I'm sorry, but did I just hear that you know OptimusPorn!!!!" Highlight of my first year right there.

Re:That's basically what we did (2, Interesting)

Da Cheez (1069822) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889194)

We have the same system with DC++ here, including support from ResNet, though the minimum share level is 5GB. Problem now is that since the system is tolerated by the admins, to cover their own skins (understandably) file sharing has been restricted to non-copyrighted files, with violators being permanently banned from DC++. As such it's hardly used anymore except for finding things like Linux distros without cutting into internet bandwidth allotment, and sneakernet's becoming more popular again.

Re:That's basically what we did (1)

loufoque (1400831) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889328)

It was much simpler at my school. We just used windows (samba) shares.
And then there was a server that did some indexing and allowed to search for files.

Re:That's basically what we did (1)

CSFFlame (761318) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889376)

Greetings my UC brothers

It's what we did too (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889576)

and I'm WAY too old for this, there was no internet to speak of when I was in college. We pirated music the old fashioned way, which analog cassette tapes. One guy would buy a new album (an "album" was like what we now call a compact disk, but it was about 1 foot in diameter and made of black plastic) and bring it back to the dorm, and pretty soon everyone who wanted it would have a second or third generation cassette dub (and yes, these were perfectly listenable). That was actually better than file sharing because it meant you spent a lot of time actually listening to music with your friends while making these dubs, instead of being an antisocial geek copying files over a computer.

Now get off my lawn.

Re:That's basically what we did (1)

thepike (1781582) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889836)

That's what we had too. I was an RA, I used it, my friends who worked for computer services used it, everyone did. The administration would crack down on people using limewire etc., but they basically tolerated DC++ because it was internal, so they never got in trouble for it. At one RA training someone asked the head of the computer system if DC++ was legal. He just stared at him for a minute, said "I have no idea what you're talking about," and walked out of the room. We gave that RA crap for a while, but it pretty much summed up the administration's opinion on the subject.

I had friends off campus who just put up their own networks with shared drives instead. If you were friends with them, you got read/write access to those drives and could add your music to it or take what you wanted. Again, no one who wasn't part of it could tell, aside from the high bandwidth use, so no one cared.

It's like the rebirth of the know-nothing party, but without the racial idiocy

Re:That's basically what we did (1)

my $anity 0 (917519) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890080)

Heh. Sounds like my school.

Though I don't think a dedicated usenet box is necessary to get new files. I can torrent as much as I want, so long as I pull the .torrent files through some sort of external connection. I use a fancier solution than I have to (ssh tunnel to a desktop at my house), but getting an out of school friend to e-mail a zipped .torrent would work as well. Then I make sure to set up encryption (God does that make things go slow...more people need to use encrypted torrents) and I enjoy ridiculous share ratios.

Re:That's basically what we did (1)

hansbrix (1732368) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890262)

Are you a helluva engineer?

A perk of college life? (1, Interesting)

RapmasterT (787426) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889004)

WTF does that mean? Sounds like college students are still as arrogant and clueless about life in the real world as when I was one 20+ years ago.

There's no shortage of file sharing outside of college campus networks, life in the real world just doesn't spoon feed you.

Re:A perk of college life? (2, Funny)

mindbrane (1548037) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889062)

life in the real world just doesn't spoon feed you.

where did you hear that? is it an age thing? at what age should i be looking for that to kick in? is there an opt out? man that doesn't sound good.

Re:A perk of college life? (1)

MagusSlurpy (592575) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889166)

I think the point was that it is centralized and easy to access. You don't have to hit multiple torrent sites, hope enough seeders are on, worry about campus firewalls, log on to warez sites, or trade USB keys like mentioned above. . . you just sit down, connect to the server, and start browsing.

Re:A perk of college life? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889360)

You forgot to mention 100Mbit or sometimes gigabit transfer speeds.

Re:A perk of college life? (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889466)

There's also tons of sharing going on just before and after (and often during), gamer meets (which usually have 2 or 3 bands of wireless channels all clogged up in addition to multiple gigabit and sometimes 10 gigabit ad-hoc LANs).

Re:A perk of college life? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889946)

Looks like 40 year olds are still just as arrogant and clueless about the world of universities as they were 20+ years ago.

I bet it makes you feel tough thinking you have more real world experience at 40 than a 20 year old though, right?

I sadly miss it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889086)

I transfered schools last semester, and among the things I miss from my old Engineering/Comp Sci centric school was "the network". At first there was a website somebody hosted which has a list of IPs to connect to which hosted various files, from old movies, new movies, just released games, one server hosting nothing but porn, and even programs we would normally have to go to campus computers to use, like Inventor or Solidworks, and also PDFs of books and the answer books for the math courses. Some went so far as to upload their homework for classes.

It was definitely illegal, as well as constituting academic dishonesty if you wanted to, but fuck was it awesome. IT there had to know about it, but since they blocked torrenting, making it a hassle to do, people set that up and uploaded things usually got from going home for the weekend. I believe the reasons IT didn't block it was that they were using it too, and that it kept bandwidth down (the reason they blocked torrenting wasn't really because of DMCA notices, but rather because 90% of their bandwidth was being used by 10% of their users.)

It really was a geek's paradise.

Re:I sadly miss it (1)

petermgreen (876956) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889226)

mmm heavy torrenters (whether downloading legal or illegal torrents but there aren't all that many legal ones out there) are a nightmare from a network point of view. Thats why so many providers take steps to deprioritise, throttle or even outright block it.

TCP/IP works on the principle of throttling back when it sees congestion. If every connection follows the same rules for throttling back (and there is no traffic shaping in place) then every connection will get about the same amount of bandwidth.

A bittorrent client in use by a heavy torrenter is likely to have multiple downloads going on AND multiple connections for each download. Therefore it can grab a very large share of the available bandwidth compared to a more conventional app that uses one connection at a time.

who cares? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889088)

why are these colleges worrying about piracy of movies and music, does society benefit from the creation of the vacuous nonsense that is entertainment? does humanity progress by the creation of these petty distractions? No? then screw them, why should we worry about the moral integrity surrounding superfluous crap.

Sneakernet and LAN, bro (5, Informative)

dcposch (1438157) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889224)

I'm a sophomore undergraduate at a relatively large university in California, and the volume of filesharing I see my classmates engage in is enormous.

Most of the discussion about filesharing (here on Slashdot and elsewhere) seems to focus on P2P, but in my experience BitTorrent/Gnutella/P2P darknets are just the tip of the iceberg.

The vast majority of the filesharing volume I see here is by sneakernet and private servers. The house I live in has a server with upwards of 3 TB of movies and music; all of our residents can log in.

I've seen people merge their own several-GB collections with the collection on the server. Last year, I lived in a frosh dormitory; there was no server, but it was common for people to lend each other iPods or merge media collections on each other's laptops. That kind of sharing takes a few minutes to transfer a few GB--it's on an entirely different plane from the type of sharing the RIAA and MPAA focus on, transferring one song or one movie at a time over P2P.

Incidentally, the media server setup I described is not unique to the house I live in--most of the houses and some of the dorms at my university have one; nor is it unique to colleges and universities--the startup I interned at two years ago had one, too.

So when the RIAA/MPAA sues a single mom for her kid's Kazaa downloads, I see it as beating a dead horse. The real sharing is on the scale of GB and TB at a time, not individual songs. On the rare occasion when I do find something missing from the media libraries I have access to, I'll torrent it using PeerGuardian to block corporate IPs, so I'm unlikely to show up on any logs the RIAA keeps.

By focusing their legal efforts on P2P users, I think that the media cartels may have drawn out the battle while losing the war. Yes, we're more reticent now to use BitTorrent. But we've merely moved to faster, more local, less traceable forms of sharing.

Re:Sneakernet and LAN, bro (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889640)

On the rare occasion when I do find something missing from the media libraries I have access to, I'll torrent it using PeerGuardian to block corporate IPs, so I'm unlikely to show up on any logs the RIAA keeps.

What perpetuates this wrongful line of thinking?

Re:Sneakernet and LAN, bro (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889882)

Reward. It works, so they keep doing it.

Re:Sneakernet and LAN, bro (1)

FMA1394 (1613651) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889950)

At RIT, our university almost encourages usage of Direct Connect, as otherwise, there would be so many people using the pirate bay that the internet would crash on a daily basis. No joke. The University specifically told everyone that as long as you don't get in legal trouble, they won't give a shit. Enjoy your limewire, torrents, DC++, etc (use peerblock), because nobody cares here.

Re:Sneakernet and LAN, bro (4, Interesting)

plover (150551) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890138)

I have to ask: do you see filesharing to be kind of like pot-smoking, in that "some other people say it's wrong, but it isn't hurting anyone else, so who cares?" Do you believe it's wrong, but participate anyway? Or do you actually believe it's a right that's being wrongly suppressed?

If it's either of the first of those, why do you think it is that nobody challenges the ethics of these private servers? Do you not have any peers whose moral code says "No, filesharing is wrong, you guys are ripping off my favorite band, I'm turning you in to the ethics board?" Are you're saying that really, out of the thousands of students your university, and of every other university situation you are aware of, that not a single student complains about the inappropriateness of it?

I'm not trying to fish for snitches or get anyone in trouble with this question, but I'm just pretty much surprised that nobody complains. Not even the sons or daughters of (RI|MP)AA execs or artists, whose very education might be paid for by the media being copied?

Re:Sneakernet and LAN, bro (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31890236)

but it isn't hurting anyone else huh???

Re:Sneakernet and LAN, bro (1)

straponego (521991) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890254)

You're going to hear this a lot, but it's a horrible, horrible thing you're doing and you ought to be ashamed of yourself.

Also, what do you like for de-duping?

AwEso8e fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889282)

vary for different of events today, could sink Yyour

Justifiable perk. (1)

harrythefish (1028136) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889290)

Since these kids are paying ludicrous costs for their education, are likely to enter a very contracted workforce if they're lucky, whilst competing globally, having future tax obligations thrust upon them to bail out their parents who somehow believed their entitlement to vast amounts of unearned income from housing was justified, at the very least I think society owes them a few shitty Adam Sandler movies. And those attempting to enforce anti-piracy measures should be very aware of who's paying for the generous retirements they promised themselves.

Re:Justifiable perk. (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889736)

Since these kids are paying ludicrous costs for their education, are likely to enter a very contracted workforce if they're lucky, whilst competing globally, having future tax obligations thrust upon them to bail out their parents who somehow believed their entitlement to vast amounts of unearned income from housing was justified, at the very least I think society owes them a few shitty Adam Sandler movies.

You must be a kid. Most college students don't pay the majority of their own tuition themselves, for one thing. And (at public universities in the US, anyway) tuition only covers a minority share of the cost of an education. That percentage has been going up in recent years, but it's still way south of 50% of the cost - taxpayers are paying the majority of it.

Wrong about public univeristies (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31890280)

I work for a public university, and the state covers less than half our costs. I don't know if that's true across the country, but I expect it is. 20 years ago it was a different story.

In my day we called it "swapping spit"...... (-1, Offtopic)

Bob_Who (926234) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889316)

...not "file sharing"...

My university is happy about our DC network. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889324)

At my university (40k students), we have a DC network and the IT here are not just aware of it, but some of the IT guys are the same guys who maintain it. Our university is happy to look the other way because the sharing is virtually undetectable outside the network, and we have plenty of bandwidth in network to move gig files around in seconds while not compromising the connection to the outside world. The less we share outside the DC network, the less letters they get from the RIAA (which they already ignore for the most part).

  By the way, its articles like this that shed light on these networks, which we certainly don't need.

Legal Downloading - 57 Resources (4, Insightful)

Skapare (16644) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889326)

If we mark off those resources for legal downloading (in the "comprehensive list of alternatives" link at the Educause site) that still don't work with FOSS platforms, how many remain? I know at least Magnatune is among them.

Re:Legal Downloading - 57 Resources (2, Informative)

agrif (960591) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890196)

Magnatune is a really under-appreciated source of good music. They have all of their music available free, online, as creative commons with a short audio blurb at the end. As such, they're totally cool with you using their music in a non-commercial CC work. Additionally, they have a monthly service for only about $15 where you can download as much music as you want in just about every format, including mp3, ogg, and lossless formats. The best part is they're not evil: half of everything goes directly to the artist.

The music's great too. They have a fine selection of classical, but a lot of other genres too. Off the top of my head I recommend the Seldon Plan, Chris Harvey, and those featured in Braid (Jami Sieber et. al.)

Okay, sorry about the ad speak. I have a tendency to go overboard about Magnatune... but I just love them so much!

Solutions (1)

lyinhart (1352173) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889336)

My school tried a variety of solutions in reaction to P2P file sharing: 1) bandwidth caps for most network traffic outside of the school's network 2) Provided a DRM-encumbered music service for students and 3) developed its own P2P software to share files for "legitimate", "academic" use. It didn't stop illegal file sharing entirely of course, and from what I hear the Resident Life tech support was pretty much complicit in piracy as well. Still, better than nothing.

Re:Solutions (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31889544)

The school I attended tried bandwidth caps. They spent 3 months with two fulltime engineers building and implementing the quota system. Once it was up and running, it worked quite well.
It took us 2 hours to rig vpn to partially bypass the traffic limit, but they accounted for that and ratelimited the vpn. Finally we switched to IPv6 which they completely forgot and were quotafree again.

Re:Solutions (1)

Urza9814 (883915) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889748)

Yea, we have bandwidth caps at my uni too...but there's no shortage of ways around them. Because if I want to download one Linux ISO, I'm already over my weekly cap - and as the VP of the Linux Users Group, there have been times when I needed 3 or 4 DVD images within a span of a couple hours. But as I said, there's no shortage of ways around the caps. You can download from wireless, you can get on someone's connection in town (frats, apartments, businesses), you can connect through the campus proxy server, you can ssh into one of the unix lab machines and download from there, and hell I think you could probably even use one of the many VPN servers that they have to login from home or from the wifi (there's the main campus one and then some departments have their own), though I've never tried that.

Why students piracy: (4, Insightful)

Tei (520358) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889560)

Students don't have much money (much less than people with jobs), but still have the same needs, created by the industry and our dynamic culture. The only way for these people to fullfill these needs is to piracy. I don't condone piracy.. but I have to say that the other option is frustration.

I don't theres any solution. But theres also no damage either: these people will not buy anyway. Once these people finish his studios and get a job, these same people will start buying things again, wen buying is easier.

Let students warez his music, there are things more important for us.

Re:Why students piracy: (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889864)

Tell the music industry to stop advertising to poor people! Here's an idea: let the music be free until students get their first job in their field after school. They it's time to pay the piper.

Perk of US Colleges (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889604)

In more technologically advanced countries the latest generation of broadband is plenty good at home. Even my parents and my uncle are moving to fiber connections now with 10/10 Mbit as the lowest, which is plenty and on upload even faster than my cable line. The whole "limited bandwidth" is going to be some oddity of the past in a few decades because even a fairly notorious HD hog such as myself doesn't download 100 GB/day which is what a saturated 10 Mbit line will upload. For comparison, a complete binary usenet feed is "only" about 500 Mbit/s and includes everything but the kitchen sink. Maybe live BluRay streaming is a little ways off still but then you're trying very hard to find the most marginal case possible.

DC++ FTW (2, Informative)

twitterfire (1787276) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889788)

Use DC++ (StrongDC, ApexDC). It's so much better than torrents. Tons and tons of everything you can imagine or not. Just find a decent hublist and you're good to go.

Worthless garbage (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 4 years ago | (#31889920)

Honestly, how much of this is actually worth pirating, anyway?

A defining moment of my life came in 1998, when I finally landed a coveted ISP job. (Go ahead, laugh, it was a big deal back then.) At last, I had local 100Mb access to a Usenet server with a full alt.binaries feed. A co-worker had spools upon spools of burned CDs of MP3s. I spent one ten-hour shift examining these CDs one by one. There was almost nothing that I actually cared to listen to. A notable exception was the soundtrack to Tron (the 1982 original - not that I should need to say that, but seeing the empty desert of creativity that is 2010, I feel the need to) as well as less than 100Mb of other MP3s. The local access to the Usenet server proved equally as useless, except for the firehose of porn. What's the point of pirating the NBC Sunday night line-up, when it's all crap anyway? There are just people out there to whom accumulating shows is an end in itself. It's a pathological need, like those old ladies who collect 150 cats in one house and then let them all starve.

I'm old, but (2, Interesting)

speedlaw (878924) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890000)

Back in the day, we'd hook up five or so cassette tape player in a row when someone got a fresh album, and make five tapes. We had lots of posters in the Student Union (we could even get beer there, that's how old I am) which said "home taping kills music". When CD's came out for twice the price of the vinyl, we saw how true that was. NOT. I've advised my kids to not upload, and share only with those they know in the real world. So far, I now have more music than I could listen to in a a normal lifespan, with no p2p or dodgy websites. Students hiding data from the RIAA (actually their terrified school ISP)-imagine that ! I have no fear for the new generation.

Shortsighted (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31890042)

You folks have no idea of the economic destruction you create by stealing music and movies. You have no idea of the pain you bring to individuals, especially those really hurt by this recession. I hope you enjoy. Someone else has paid for it.

Re:Shortsighted (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31890286)

>stealing
>destruction
>pain

STFU and quit being so dramatic, emo fag. They're only 1s and 0s on a computer. They have been copied and traded for as long as computers have existed (and analog media before that). It's certainly not going to stop anytime soon because of your bitching and whining about it. Just learn to live with it or do something else for a living.

aren't these future customers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31890104)

The part of these stories that always gets me is, aren't the students future customers? These are people that like digital content, and when released to the real world without file sharing networks and steady incomes then to buy the most, Most people understand the that fact that without payment these people cannot produce the media that we consume, I am just thinking that the companies can come up with some marketing strategies that will make file sharing obsolete and protect a future revenue stream while the students still have access to great content.

Re:aren't these future customers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31890222)

These are people that like digital content, and when released to the real world without file sharing networks and steady incomes then to buy the most

And what "real world" do you live in? I now have more access to file sharing networks than I ever did in college. An unrestricted unthrottled ISP with access to bittorrent is a very nice thing to have, and dorm residents don't typically have it.

Everyone is in on it in college (1)

adosch (1397357) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890126)

When I was in college back in 2000, a lot of my friends ended up getting work supplement jobs with 'Computing Services' on campus, doing the mundane desktop/printer/PC phone support to free up the campus sysadmin's time. Little did our close-nit group of friends find out the sysadmin's themselves had a huge storage server restricted by access-control lists that was loaded with mp3s, movies, dvdrips, ect. It was sort of a speak-easy to get access to it, but again, as the title states, when 'everyone' is in on piracy, from the campus nerd, to the academic probation athlete and all the way up to the Senior Sysadmin ranks, good luck with that policy. I know what our university policy was on piracy, but it was only on paper to make the board of regents happy; it's something that honestly could not be enforced.

Shock! (3, Insightful)

Spad (470073) | more than 4 years ago | (#31890214)

Students trying to get stuff for free? Never!

I had a friend at uni who used to buy packaged foodstuffs and then send them back to the "If you're not completely satisfied" address with a fictional complaint. 9 times out of 10 he'd get a crate of said product by way of compensation; he survived for 3 years, barely paying for anything he ate or drank in this manner and you're amazed that people are swapping music without paying for it?

If any single group of people can find a way to get things without paying for them, it's student. Intelligent, poor, lots of free time = win.

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