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US Entertainment Industry To Congress: Make It Legal For Us To Deploy Rootkits

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the for-your-protection dept.

United States 443

An anonymous reader writes "The hilariously named 'Commission on the Theft of American Intellectual Property' has finally released its report, an 84-page tome that's pretty bonkers. But there's a bit that stands out as particularly crazy: a proposal to legalize the use of malware in order to punish people believed to be copying illegally. The report proposes that software would be loaded on computers that would somehow figure out if you were a pirate, and if you were, it would lock your computer up and take all your files hostage until you call the police and confess your crime. This is the mechanism that crooks use when they deploy ransomware."

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Why does this not surprise me? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831775)

These guys are the biggest thieves of the lot.

They also want to allow private cyberwar... (5, Interesting)

Esteanil (710082) | about a year ago | (#43831903)

They also want to allow private companies to make "aggressive actions" in retaliation against "foreign cyber spies".

Like, there's no way THAT could possibly escalate or cause the end of the internet as we know it...

Link [nytimes.com]

Re:They also want to allow private cyberwar... (4, Funny)

Trepidity (597) | about a year ago | (#43832011)

"Foreign cyber spies" sounds like a phrase my grandfather who knows nothing about computers would use.

Re:They also want to allow private cyberwar... (5, Funny)

BrokenHalo (565198) | about a year ago | (#43832049)

No more ridiculous than the first line of TFS:

The hilariously named 'Commission on the Theft of American Intellectual Property' ...

...Presumably hilarious by way of the inclusion of the words "American" and "Intellectual" consecutively.

Sigh...

Re:They also want to allow private cyberwar... (5, Insightful)

lexsird (1208192) | about a year ago | (#43832105)

Just think, your grandfather will also be voting too. He'll be sure to vote for those who support fighting these evil pirate scum and their foreign comrades.

 

Re:Why does this not surprise me? (5, Insightful)

landofcleve (1959610) | about a year ago | (#43832135)

Of course, it stands to reason that if they are looking to make this practice legal, they are probably already engaged in it.

Re:Why does this not surprise me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832233)

Unfortunately these bastards have the government covering their sorry asses.
We need more of those crazy muslims running around with butcher knives and beheading people. They just need to learn to behead the right kind of persons. MAFIAA and RIAA type people.
What a show that would be. Kudos if they explain themselves to the world filmed by a smartphone.

Surprise is that this doesn't happen already (1, Insightful)

blarkon (1712194) | about a year ago | (#43831779)

What's really surprising is that torrents aren't infected up the wazoo with malware anyway.

Re:Surprise is that this doesn't happen already (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831841)

Do you remember when Sony sneaked rootkits on their CD's and USB-memories and got away with a slap on the wrist.
It won't happen again, the wristslapping that is.

Re:Surprise is that this doesn't happen already (2)

PopeRatzo (965947) | about a year ago | (#43832165)

Do you remember when Sony sneaked rootkits on their CD's and USB-memories and got away with a slap on the wrist.
It won't happen again, the wristslapping that is.

Right. Next time, their stock price will go up and the CEO's will get a bonus.

Those poor corporate elite won't have to bear the excruciating and embarrassing agony of a "wristslapping". They have very tender wrists, you know. Limp, in fact, which is why they need government's protection of their massive profits.

Re:Surprise is that this doesn't happen already (2, Insightful)

KiloByte (825081) | about a year ago | (#43832085)

If you want to be safe from malware, use torrents. It's "legal" downloads that are riddled with crap. Starting with the Java installer for Windows being bundled with Ask Toolbar malware, through big sites pushing repackaged open source stuff wrapped up in a rogue installer, up to most commercial games installing rootkits like SecuROM or Steam. And don't even start with "only light DRM" or by twisting the definition of rootkit to exclude Steam: it needs root, holds it, uses it against you, so it's a rootkit, period.

In the Windows world, it's captain Anakata's bay where safest software comes from.

Re:Surprise is that this doesn't happen already (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832207)

Steam is not a rootkit, no matter how much you dislike it.

Re:Surprise is that this doesn't happen already (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832221)

Don't know about you, but Steam doesn't run as root on my box.

Re:Surprise is that this doesn't happen already (5, Informative)

staalmannen (1705340) | about a year ago | (#43832231)

Does steam need root? I needed root to install it (like any piece of software) on Arch linux, but it runs at low privileges. Also if you run the windows version under Wine it is completely unprivileged and only active in your assigned WINEPREFIX.

Re:Surprise is that this doesn't happen already (4, Informative)

MysteriousPreacher (702266) | about a year ago | (#43832289)

Steam has root access? That's news to me. I run as a non-admin user, and have never seen elevated privileges outside of Steam client updates. Games are stored in ~/Library so there's no higher access needed for installing and updating games. I don't see any kexts or system level daemons.

What makes you suspect Steam is doing what you claim?

Re:Surprise is that this doesn't happen already (5, Insightful)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | about a year ago | (#43832089)

That is the value of having a torrent community. You go to a place like TPB and read the comments before downloading a torrent. People have a way of looking after each other when they are part of a community.

Seriously.. (5, Insightful)

wei2912 (2923897) | about a year ago | (#43831785)

Maybe they should have a taste of how rootkits feel like.

Re:Seriously.. (5, Interesting)

citizenr (871508) | about a year ago | (#43831937)

umm they did, Sony got rooted. All it did was give them more ammunition.

Maybe it would of worked if hackers targeted individuals within corporation. Leak personal details of everyone above VP inside Sony for example? Schedules, bank records, credit ratings, private photos no one was supposed to see, this kind of stuff.

Re:Seriously.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832121)

Rooted and rootkits are not the same thing. Sony was the one who installed rootkits on people's computers from their music CDs.

LOL (5, Insightful)

Bobakitoo (1814374) | about a year ago | (#43831787)

I always been saying that the entertainment industry was the real pirate as what they were doing was closer to sailing the seas to sinking ship, steal booty and murder crewman then simply sharing data over the Internet. Now anyone not seeing it that way has no excuse.

Re:LOL (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831817)

America! Fuck Yeah!
What you gonna do when we come for you!!

ROFLMAO

Well yes... (5, Insightful)

sociocapitalist (2471722) | about a year ago | (#43831801)

"This is the mechanism that crooks use when they deploy ransomware."

Enough said.

Re:Well yes... (4, Insightful)

Technician (215283) | about a year ago | (#43831845)

This will train the younger generation to harden their computers against future attacks. No Script, PDF Adobe Acrobat, IE, and other easy targets may finaly get secured as the avenue of attack is examined by security pro's.

Re:Well yes... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831911)

And no NT kernels. But consumer Windows desktop/laptop/tablets are dying anyway so the point is moot.

Re:Well yes... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832157)

Ahh yeah the "year of linux" looks to be rising from the dead once again.

Re:Well yes... (1)

hlavac (914630) | about a year ago | (#43831931)

The logical next step for them is to make their malware mandatory by law on all computers.

Re:Well yes... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832017)

The logical next step for them is to make their malware mandatory by law on all computers.

Oh don't worry. At this rate, it will probably be baked in by default on Windows 9.

Re:Well yes... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831901)

Indeed, within the context of the paragraph, that sentence is entirely redundant.

Exports? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831803)

Let's say this does get legalised, somehow. Have fun trying to export any infected products to the rest of the world!

And for everybody else trying to sell entertainment products made in the US, all the people who make sensible data with no rootkits in it, have fun trying to convince the rest of the world to trust you! People will just see "Made in the US" and read it as "This will destroy your computer" regardless of whether there's malware present or not.

Re:Exports? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831889)

Let's say this does get legalised, somehow. Have fun trying to export any infected products to the rest of the world!

Do you live somewhere in the rest of the world?

Have you heard the expression "To 'harmonize' the laws".

That is how this will become legal where you live.

aint gonna happen the week after (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831927)

and go for it you will cause the revolution in Canada that topples the conservatives....GO ON DO THIS and shove it at conservatives
THEY WON'T TOUCH CRAP LIKE THIS WITH A 50 FOOT POLE
we already defeated there majority govts wish on internet spying
SO GUESS WHAT no 40 million market for you here....NEXT get it handed to you form europe....
and then what as hte poster says US MADE = NO SALE
perfect i say please do this and destroy your ability to make anything inside your nation

Re:aint gonna happen the week after (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832003)

You so cray! :p No, wait. I really mean it. You're crazy.

To answer GP properly, each country has its own laws on copyright, but a treaty between industrialized countries requires members to respect the laws of other countries as well. So to make that easier, they tend to have legislation at least moving in the same direction. However, where one's home country's laws and the copyright holder's country's laws conflict, the home country's laws take precedence.

This is just a report with various recommendations that may or may not be included in a future bill that hasn't been made yet, and it's not likely that something currently illegal would be made legal just because some wankers think its a good thing (not impossible, though; pot users, I'm looking at you).

And for parent, you laughably have no idea what happens in Canadian politics with a majority government. The opposition can be as loud as they want, but it doesn't change the fact that the majority party (AKA the Conservatives) pass whatever they want, and the minority can't do anything to stop them. It was the same way when the Liberals were in power, and it remains one of the major problems with Canadian politics. However, it does mean that anything that doesn't get passed is at the whim of the Conservatives, and anything that does get passed is also at the whims of the Conservatives. They are the only ones that should be lauded for all the good bills passed and condemned for all the bad ones.

Fortunately, the NDP is too crazy in general to ever be granted a majority. You got lucky once. Don't expect to even be the opposition next time.

Re:Exports? (2)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#43831935)

Let's say this does get legalised, somehow. Have fun trying to export any infected products to the rest of the world!

Do you live somewhere in the rest of the world?

Have you heard the expression "To 'harmonize' the laws".

That is how this will become legal where you live.

This would push things over the limit. No companies or government branches outside of USA(or even in USA!) would stand for this. they would all just move to open source if they had to..

Re:Exports? (5, Insightful)

BrokenHalo (565198) | about a year ago | (#43832125)

This would push things over the limit. No companies or government branches outside of USA(or even in USA!) would stand for this.

How much do you want to bet?

Our illustrious Federal Government of Australia (before or after the election, it'll make no difference) will just roll over and say "ooh, that's nice, tickle me just there, that's the spot..."

That's what Free Trade Agreements are for. Just a formal way of saying "I'm your bitch".

Re:Exports? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832139)

Let's say this does get legalised, somehow. Have fun trying to export any infected products to the rest of the world!

Here you go sir, TPP [wikipedia.org] . That's the way of shoving creepy laws to the rest of the world.

Re:Exports? (2)

screwdriver (691980) | about a year ago | (#43832251)

And have fun getting any of us to buy these products. It's pretty bad when you have a better chance of not getting malware by pirating it.

Greyzone (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831807)

So, if I do something that is legal but Sony thinks should be illegal then the laws are changed.
If Sony does something that is illegal but they think should be legal then the laws are also changed.

Seems reasonable.

Also, never let a product with the Sony-logo into your home. You never know what approach they will use to contaminate your computer.

Sad Sad Sad (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831809)

It deeply saddens me that people continue to support companies that pull this kind of crap.

I'm sure that Sony/Microsoft et al would change their tune of their products weren't selling. But, when their selling millions of crippled or bugged titles, my lone voice is crushed by the cacophonous accusations of paranoia.

Re:Sad Sad Sad (2)

ibib (464750) | about a year ago | (#43831871)

It deeply saddens me that people continue to support companies that pull this kind of crap.

I'm sure that Sony/Microsoft et al would change their tune of their products weren't selling. But, when their selling millions of crippled or bugged titles, my lone voice is crushed by the cacophonous accusations of paranoia.

The problem is that if we stop buying them, they will claim it was due to piracy or whatever and have the legislators make up new rules forcing us to purchase their products.

Re:Sad Sad Sad (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831983)

The problem is, that if you stop buying them, you won't get your daily hit. Then you'll go nuts.

Do yourself a favor. Unplug. Plant a garden. Go hiking. Give up on Tek, and Tek careers.

Stop enriching those who destroy you.

Re:Sad Sad Sad (1)

cheekyjohnson (1873388) | about a year ago | (#43832177)

So? That's not a reason to buy the products anyway.

Re:Sad Sad Sad (5, Insightful)

Culture20 (968837) | about a year ago | (#43831963)

What's really sad is your voice of reason sounds like paranoia to ordinary people. No one outside of tech circles remembers the rootkit fiasco.

Crooks (5, Informative)

ZombieBraintrust (1685608) | about a year ago | (#43832025)

Director Richard Ellings, Deputy Director Roy Kamphausen, Casey Bruner, John Graham, Creigh Agnew, Meredith Miller, Clara Gillispie, Sonia Luthra, Amanda Keverkamp, Deborah Cooper, Karolos Karnikis, Joshua Ziemkowski, and Jonathan Walton.

I wish news articles put faces these types of outrages. The above people are the commission.

Re:Sad Sad Sad (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832107)

Name a company that's pulling this kind of crap. In fact, name any entertainment company that's got anything to do with the report. Because there aren't any. It's not even about the entertainment industry.

While there's no doubt that the entertainment industry would be the first to exploit the proposed legislation, the report itself is about protecting US patents and trade secrets from companies in certain nameless (but obvious) other countries. As you might deduce from the copyright assignment: © 2013 by The National Bureau of Asian Research.

Not only the Slashdot headline and summary, but also TFA are flat out wrong.

RIAA tried this (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831813)

The RIAA tried to get an amendment added to the Patriot Act in 2001 that would do the very same thing. This is domestic terrorism on different level, but terrorism just the same.

I am ok with that if... (2)

Extremus (1043274) | about a year ago | (#43831815)

I would accept that if politicians and big companies also install some sort of "corruption-detection rootkit" in their computers.

Re:I am ok with that if... (1)

twrake (168507) | about a year ago | (#43831885)

This is the only positive I see here. When such a system is hacked we will be able to view congressional staff's computers to see who congress is really working for!

Re:I am ok with that if... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832039)

That is what wikileaks is for. Sadly people tend to focus on a pretty unimportant person named Assange rather than the information.

Wait... (5, Insightful)

eulernet (1132389) | about a year ago | (#43831825)

In fact, this proposal will probably be refused.

But this is a strategy:

1) propose a tough law
2) wait for its refusal
3) propose a "lighter" one

Since the lighter one will appear innocuous and since the first one has been refused, the second will be accepted.
And you can bet that they wanted to propose the "light" one first, but it would have been probably refused if submitted first.

Re:Wait... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831857)

So the "lite one" is that they still install the rootkit, then when it detects you are a pirate, it phones home, and the cops bust down the door!

Re:Wait... (5, Interesting)

dinfinity (2300094) | about a year ago | (#43831861)

More commonly known as:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Door-in-the-face_technique [wikipedia.org]

Although one could wonder to what extent feelings of guilt and the drive to reciprocate are applicable in this situation.

Re:Wait... (1)

lfourrier (209630) | about a year ago | (#43832279)

That's exactly why I advocate complete removal of IP from the law.
The only method to fight unreasonable demands is to made unreasonable demands in the other direction.
Reasonable arguments are no longer a sane strategy.

Can we have it the other way 'round too? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831829)

Well, $SUBJECT says it all!

Orphan or Dame? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831839)

With the dreadful formulaic schlock that Hollywood puts out, it's fair to say that they've already incorporated an anti-theft device, called "bad writing".

Re:Orphan or Dame? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831863)

Remember they blame any dent in their profit margin on piracy, regardless of people actually pirating something or not, in their mind they're entitled to profits even if nobody watches their tripe.

Re:Orphan or Dame? (3, Informative)

Dunbal (464142) | about a year ago | (#43832029)

Not entirely true. They are still making money. Rather, they blame any dent in their optimistically inflated projections of future earnings on piracy.

Coming soon, illegal to remove rootkits (2)

LordSkippy (140884) | about a year ago | (#43831849)

it would lock your computer up and take all your files hostage until you call the police and confess your crime

Or until you use repair tools to remove the rootkit. Once they figure out people can do that, then they'll ask to make it illegal to remove their rootkits.

Re:Coming soon, illegal to remove rootkits (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831947)

it would lock your computer up and take all your files hostage until you call the police and confess your crime

Or until you use repair tools to remove the rootkit. Once they figure out people can do that, then they'll ask to make it illegal to remove their rootkits.

Already done; couldn't they claim that circumventing the lockdown is a violation of the DMCA?

Intereting idea! (1, Interesting)

EzInKy (115248) | about a year ago | (#43831967)

So how about a system that requires registration to make it illegal to remove the rootkit? They could even make that registration database searchable so that people can decide for themselves whether or not they wish to form a contract by agreeing to the installation of a rootkit. Perhaps it could be called the "National Copyrighted Works Database" or something like that? A searchable database of things you can't copy would be good for creators as it would indicate their intent on not having their works copied, and it would be good for the people as it would provide them with them a list of content whose owners do not wish to be copied. Such a database would be a win-win and perfectly doable.

Re:Intereting idea! (1)

r_a_trip (612314) | about a year ago | (#43832173)

They could even make that registration database searchable so that people can decide for themselves whether or not they wish to form a contract by agreeing to the installation of a rootkit.

How long have you been in Room 101?

Re:Intereting idea! (1)

EzInKy (115248) | about a year ago | (#43832213)

40 years, you?

fuck this shit (5, Insightful)

shentino (1139071) | about a year ago | (#43831855)

I do not trust a rent seeking organization of any sort to not "make mistakes" on calling people pirates.

They're trying to be judge, jury, executioner, AND witness.

These people sue grandmas and dead people to get settlements. I wouldn't trust them not to frame someone that happens to have a fat bank account.

And even if they were simply incompetent, I still wouldn't trust them to actually care about making mistakes.

Re:fuck this shit (5, Insightful)

JustOK (667959) | about a year ago | (#43831971)

They're trying to be judge, jury, executioner, AND witness.

AND victim

Teh Terrorists (5, Insightful)

DarkOx (621550) | about a year ago | (#43831875)

Use the fear.

Obviously allowing media companies to deploy root kits will increase the number of vulnerable machines on our nations part of the internet. Assuming this some how only finds its way on to home PC it still leaves many machines more vulnerable to attack by additional malware which might make them botnet members which could be used in DDOS attacks against critical business sectors like Finance and Healthcare.

Clearly the desire to do this shows the media companies behind it are irresponsible citizens endangering our national security at best actively aiding and abetting our enemies and terror organizations at worst. These are unAmerican activities and the industry participants need to be call out on it.

Time to start thinking (2)

kasperd (592156) | about a year ago | (#43831877)

Now is the time to think about how the entertainment industry can be hit back with their own law. How about legally deploying rootkits on their computers to grab copies of their newest products before they are released.

Re:Time to start thinking (4, Funny)

radja (58949) | about a year ago | (#43831933)

Just to make sure it's not plagiarized ofcourse... because that's piracy too...

Re:Time to start thinking (4, Interesting)

cp.tar (871488) | about a year ago | (#43832131)

I'm thinking of something different. I'm thinking of disassembling their rootkits, devising a completely innocuous file that would be flagged as a false positive, and then distributing that file in an even more innocuous manner. Then we wait for shit to hit the fan.

This is the part... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831899)

This is the part where you go find out who is behind this or those most responsible and you kill them, very publicly and very gruesomely. ....but you're not going to do that because you are pathetically weak.

(not my country, before any of you giggling jello masses says it....)

Re:This is the part... (1)

camperdave (969942) | about a year ago | (#43832021)

This is the part where you go find out who is behind this or those most responsible and you kill them, very publicly and very gruesomely. .

That was Jefferson's stand, I believe.

Re:This is the part... (1)

lexsird (1208192) | about a year ago | (#43832059)

That kind of talk will get you put in Gitmo or killed by a drone here. Nobody talks violence against the new masters of the United Corporate States of America.

Salem, MA 1692 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831929)

It sounds like a classic witch hunt. I wonder if people miss the point of history class or simply forget what they learn. It seems like people want or even need somebody or something to blame. The Vulcans of the Star Trek universe were onto something. This emotional, fear, and anger based thinking are what have always plagued our species. Humans as a species need to learn to set feelings aside, or at minimum, learn to be aware of and understand emotions, as the Vulcans (fictionally) did if we want to truly solve our problems. It seems to me that our emotional reasoning is the biggest enemy humanity has. Since the Vulcans were (most of the time) in complete control of their emotions, I think we should strive to be at least partially like them. This is a bit philosophical, but I think it is relevant because it seems this group is likely being driven by some sort of misguided self-righteousness (a FEELING of superiority, IMHO) that would not occur if people were to adapt a more Vulcan mindset.

On Slashdot, we bitch and complain about folks being stupid, asshats, and tell them to get the fuck off our lawns. I think the best thing that we can do to prevent and resolve situations like this, that appear (I didn't read TFA because I am connected through a proxy with a filter that is blocking it) to be witch hunts, dichotomy, irrational laws based on special interests and/or emotions, is to support psychiatric, psychological, and neurological research that can provide insights into this behavior. Once we can truly understand how the mind works and why the reasoning (SW) behind these kind of events occur, we will be able to progress from this.

This is a lot of opinion, some will probably disagree. I look forward to reading the reasoning behind the disagreements.

Wow ... (5, Interesting)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year ago | (#43831953)

So they basically want the right to maliciously hack and damage other people's computers on their belief that someone is stealing from them.

No court, no proof, just what they believe. So they want to be judge, jury, and executioner.

OK Anonymous, there's your targets. Each one of the people who contributed to this report are now fair game. Since they've decided it should be their right to hack us, they're now perfect valid targets. Their families, bank accounts, and mistresses are good starting points.

What a bunch of douchebags. These guys would have us undercut all of computer security to give them special access to enforce their claims without oversight, and in the process, they'd probably make most computers far less secure.

If these guys want the right to commit what would be crimes for anyone else, then I suggest they don't deserve a whole lot of consideration.

This is shameful, and I really hope the lawmakers tell them a big "no friggin' way".

Re:Wow ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43831997)

This is shameful, and I really hope the lawmakers tell them a big "no friggin' way".

The only way to do that is to first hack the lawmakers' computers and hold their data hostage until they give the Crook Industry the finger. Hard. A fucking big hard finger so far up their ass that it can tickle their tongue.

Re:Wow ... (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year ago | (#43832023)

The only way to do that is to first hack the lawmakers' computers and hold their data hostage until they give the Crook Industry the finger.

Sadly, if the lawmakers were targeted, it would come under lots of federal laws, and they might decide they need to allow this.

But the guys proposing this? Absolutely.

Re:Wow ... (4, Insightful)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year ago | (#43832249)

This is shameful, and I really hope the lawmakers tell them a big "no friggin' way".

The lawmakers will tell them, "wow, this will be tough to get through. And I'm very busy with my reelection campaign and fundraising right, now - it's very hard to do fundraising in this economy. If only I didn't need to spend so much time fundraising I might be able to work on this."

This is Feudalism (5, Interesting)

davydagger (2566757) | about a year ago | (#43831973)

The last stripes of a so called "free market" are being washed away into corporte feudalism, where the corporations now take over law enforcement, and soon after, law creation and destruction.

Denying citizens all due proccess of a Jury of their peers, set up by a democraticly elected republican government is an assault on everything we stand for as a nation. This moves beyond the scary police state, dirrecty into feudalism. No longer do corporations control us with soft power, but they not have the right to directly interfere in our lives in place of the government, without the shred of due process the former has afforded us. This even gives them more power than the NSA/FBI, who to date have yet to request or start putting root kits on people's hard drives.

It should go without saying that the RIAA will likely use this based on past actions to:

1. Falsely labeling people as pirates, due to apathy. Don't give a damn who's really a pirate or not.

2. Falsely label random people as pirates due to malice.

3. Black Hat activities against critics. They could plant evidence of serious crimes(kiddie porn, bomb making materials, terrorist manefestos, etc..) on the hard drives of victims. They could also remotely wipe hard disks, spy, and delete or manipulate selective files, making it harder for people to mount a defense against their

4. Set people up. I.e. open connections to whatever machine they want and do whatever activity they want. They want someone to say something terrorist related they can now.

  and locking there machines, wiping their hard drives, deleting files related to criticism, giving them virrii, planting evidence, setting them up for criminal activity, etc....

Just went you thought SOPA and PIPA cannot be worse.

I think we need to propose our own laws permanently banning the practice across the board, and stiff penalties for everyone who would try. The laws need to have the CEOs, and corporate officers go to jail. The law also needs to make whoever wrote that, go to fucking jail.

By go to jail I mean

1. Pre-dawn raid where they shoot they're pets, smash their houses, and intimidate their family
2. Denied bail, intimidated into making confessions with ridiculous sentences.
3. Freeze their bank accounts so they can't pay for lawyers.
4. at least 15 years in federal prison in general population.

Re:This is Feudalism (0)

roman_mir (125474) | about a year ago | (#43832143)

The last stripes of a so called "free market" are being washed away into corporte feudalism, where the corporations now take over law enforcement, and soon after, law creation and destruction.

- I am not clear, are you blaming the free market for some private organisation asking the GOVERNMENT to implement a LAW that would VIOLATE free market?

Free market is the minimisation of government and regulation of the people's decisions purely by market forces. Using government force to destroy individual freedoms (like in this case - right to own and operate private property and right to a trial before being found guilty of some crime, etc.) is the exact opposite of the free market.

Re:This is Feudalism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832185)

- I am not clear, are you blaming the free market for some private organisation asking the GOVERNMENT to implement a LAW that would VIOLATE free market?

No, he's pointing out that the free market is a myth, and never has operated (and never will operate) the way its proponents claim.

We don't have a free market, we have what we've always had -- industry writes the rules and the rest of us can eat shit.

These wonderful free market forces you talk are mostly about big players trying to get an advantage and screw us all over.

The people claiming how wonder the free market is are either full of shit or self deluded. But people still cling to it like it's the best thing ever.

He's pointing out that we're only a few steps away from an oligarchy in which corporations run the show.

Re:This is Feudalism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832261)

>Denying citizens all due proccess of a Jury of their peers, set up by a democraticly elected republican government is an assault on everything we stand for as a nation.
That's quite the agenda for President Pinocchiobama, and he'd rather just use drones that drop bombs on pirating terrorists, to the chagrin of the corporate lobby. Hell, he's already killed several Americans that way, so it's a proven tactic that works.

But how? (1)

symes (835608) | about a year ago | (#43832001)

I would seem that the only reliable means of distributing these rootkits, etc., would be to lace existing softeware accordinfy and release onto pirate sites. Am I missing something or doesn't this risk exposing and therefore crippling a whole load of supposedly legitimate corporations who have been shown to use pirated versions of software?

Re:But how? (1)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | about a year ago | (#43832151)

I suspect that when a corporation unscrupulously installs 10,000 copies of unlicensed Microsoft Office on their computers, they don't start with an ISO they downloaded from Pirate Bay.

It would be interesting to see (1)

Registered Coward v2 (447531) | about a year ago | (#43832009)

the response the first time a major corporation's computers become the "victim" of a legal root kit.

The natural end-point to "Intellectual Property" (5, Insightful)

Lundse (1036754) | about a year ago | (#43832013)

In the end, socalled IP can only be enforced in this manner: Control over the machines used by the buyers, ie. the potential buyers, ie. the rabble. Only when we no longer control our machines, can you "sell" access - you need a gateway to extract money! Since the "you need the LP/CD/DVD"-model has died, the only possible gate is access and control over the machine.

So, the Free Software movement asks again: Who should own and control the machines we all use for work, entertainment, living?

Will it ever end? (5, Interesting)

sqrt(2) (786011) | about a year ago | (#43832015)

Are we still having this conversation in 2013? You lost. It's over. Our society at large accepts and supports file sharing for non-commercial use. You can't put that toothpaste back in the tube, you can't roll back the cultural clock. You will not stop filesharing. Figure out a way to make money in this new economy or die quietly. Something as non-essential and ephemeral as the entertainment "industry" doesn't deserve a minute of face time with our government. There are important matters to be dealt with, going after filesharers doesn't even register on the importance-scale.

Is anyone really entertaining the delusions of these detached, clueless, dinosaurs? Meanwhile, our infrastructure is literally collapsing, and they want us to waste government time having a discussion about imaginary property. Grow up. Your racket is over, you had decades of a free ride, longer than you deserved, to see this coming and do something about it. You sat on your hands, so now knuckle under and let that sweet creative destruction wash over your entire industry.

Re:Will it ever end? (3, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year ago | (#43832057)

Are we still having this conversation in 2013? You lost. It's over. Our society at large accepts and supports file sharing for non-commercial use.

But, sadly, the lawmakers will still do what they've been paid to do by these lobbyists, and the US has increasingly set themselves up to pin their future on copyright and all other forms of IP. They simply can't afford to do anything different now.

So I fear they're going to keep pushing from their end as hard as they can. Eventually, I'm pretty sure they're going to want every general purpose computer to be built in such a way that they have control over it.

Is anyone really entertaining the delusions of these detached, clueless, dinosaurs?

Yes, the lawmakers who keep passing the laws they ask for.

Re:Will it ever end? (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about a year ago | (#43832285)

Something as non-essential and ephemeral as the entertainment "industry" doesn't deserve a minute of face time with our government. There are important matters to be dealt with, going after filesharers doesn't even register on the importance-scale.

The only importance scale, in reality, is who has the most money for lobbyists and bribes.

Is anyone really entertaining the delusions of these detached, clueless, dinosaurs?

Is anybody still believing that fairy tale taught in grade school that Government is "of the People, by the People, and for the people?" If it were a peered reviewed paper, it would be thrown out for the overwhelming contradictory evidence available.

Ideas like this never work (2)

Striikerr (798526) | about a year ago | (#43832045)

We've seen similar approaches in the past where some company installs a root kit into their product. Sony did this with some music CD once and there have been other instances. The problem arises when the hacking community discovers the rootkit (and they always do) and they make use of the rootkit for their own purposes and it turns into a gateway for malware getting onto the person's computer. Again, this is not conjecture, this has already happened.
Additionally, this would lead the way to false positives where a company thinks a person has pirated software but has in fact not. Look at the headaches with Windows activations where the software suddenly assumes that it has been pirated and is disabled / crippled until the user gets it sorted out..
Like any weapon, this kind of stuff can be turned against lawful people and it is not worth implementing.

If companies are so worried about piracy and the costs to them, they should stop attacking the enduser sitting at home and go after the large organized crime groups in other countries where piracy is rampant and effectively sanctioned by the local government. THAT is where the big numbers for revenue lost to piracy comes from, not from some kid at home downloading games or music to try a few times.

Worry 'bout this like its 1999 (1)

TheSkepticalOptimist (898384) | about a year ago | (#43832063)

I mean really most people do not buy CD's anymore or use PC's to listen to music, Rootkits are no longer an issue for the vast majority of multimedia content users. No need to get your knickers in a twist.

Re:Worry 'bout this like its 1999 (1)

jareth-0205 (525594) | about a year ago | (#43832159)

I mean really most people do not buy CD's anymore or use PC's to listen to music, Rootkits are no longer an issue for the vast majority of multimedia content users. No need to get your knickers in a twist.

[citation needed]

Do you have any figures to back that statement up or are you just pulling opinions out of your arse?

That you would show such a disregard to people's privacy and computer safety is pretty astonishing, really.

Re:Worry 'bout this like its 1999 (2)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | about a year ago | (#43832167)

A Rootkit on your cellphone, that you use to listen to music, would make you jump and react, though. Correct?

Re:Worry 'bout this like its 1999 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832169)

I mean really most people do not buy CD's anymore or use PC's to listen to music, Rootkits are no longer an issue for the vast majority of multimedia content users. No need to get your knickers in a twist.

so the rootkit will be a part of your distribution service. Why can't itunes be the carrier? no one said it was restricted to CDs. You want that song from XYZ publisher? Install our "plugin" first to get access to that library...

On the Offensive: Part of an ugly trend (4, Insightful)

bdwoolman (561635) | about a year ago | (#43832065)

Many large corporations, including the entertainment industry, are using -- or are looking at using -- proactive strategies as part of their security playbook. There was an interesting report on NPR [npr.org] concerning this a few months back. Currently, deploying malware is, to all intents and purposes, simply illegal. As it should be. These guys want a self-defense avenue for deploying destructive or surveillance programs against their perceived enemies. IMHO our corrupt congress will -- sooner or later -- be bribed into letting them have their way.

YOYO. You're On Your Own.

They are learning from the best (1)

kbdd (823155) | about a year ago | (#43832101)

I can't imagine that such a system could ever backfire. When was the last time software did not work as expected?

It is unbelievable that somebody would actually propose something like that.

Linux might yet have a chance. (2)

jacekm (895699) | about a year ago | (#43832115)

If this goes through, the safest way to protect private PC regardless of if you are a pirate or not would be to start using Linux desktop. Id does not guarantee 100% malware free but it is one of the safest. Linux desktop might still have a chance !.

Take the money (2)

Reliable Windmill (2932227) | about a year ago | (#43832119)

I wonder if they will eventually ask to be allowed to just take the money directly from citizens' accounts. Their ultimate goal is to control the entire development and consumption of all things culture.

Unbelievablee Greed (1)

bobwalt (2500092) | about a year ago | (#43832133)

It is difficult to underestimate the Greed of the entertainment industry. These people replace the energy industry as the poster child for robber barons.

Question for MS and Apple Fans: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832155)

Question for MS and Apple Fans:
Which operating systems would be most likely to allow these official, legally mandated under US law, rootkits to install via a backdoor (while denying it):
Windows (US based, subject to US law, closed source)
OS X (US based, subject to US law, mostly closed source)
Linux (International, Multiple distros many not subject to US law, open source so backdoors much easier to detect)
Please answer honestly.

Note that I don't believe this particular clause will go through; but it *is* a good illustration of why Linux is a defence against government control of Computers/The Internet - Apple and MS can be 'ordered' or 'persuaded' to do certain things by the US government - meanwhile, good luck getting *all* the main Linux distros to put some backdoor code in - it just ain't going to happen. this really shows the benefit of 'biodiversity' in the OS world meaning that some sorts of 'attacks' just won't work - proving having multiple distros is not a waste of time, but a robustness feature.

Even people who prefer Windows or Mac OS X and find Linux does not meet their requirements should welcome Linux as part of the ecosystem. The presence of Linux makes it more difficult to lock everything down (e.g. with just Windows and OS X, you could make a lucrative DRM agreement or similar with both Apple and MS), and so benefits Mac and Windows users as well.

Isn't this proof of a criminal conspiracy? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832163)

As I read it, this plan constitutes a conspiracy to commit extortion; such a conspiracy is a felony under California law. I think it should be brought to the attention of the Attorney General of the state of California.

Hundreds of billions of dollars! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43832171)

I love this from the report:"Hundreds of billions of dollars per year. The annual losses are likely to be comparable to the current annual level of U.S. exports to Asia—over $300 billion. The exact figure is unknowable,"

So they don't know how large the losses are from piracy but they are likely (In a Dr. Evil voice) ) Hundreds of billions of dollars!!!

Chris Dodd? (1)

inode_buddha (576844) | about a year ago | (#43832297)

What is Chris Dodd' sinvolvement in this? Since he left Congress and works for the MPAA now, you can bet he's in it somewhere...

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