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Software To Stop Song Trading

CowboyNeal posted more than 10 years ago | from the watching-the-watchmen dept.

Music 595

Shippy writes "Palisade Systems is about to launch new software that can identify and block copyrighted songs as they are being traded online. However, the article fails to mention that it will also stop legal song downloads. The software blocks anything that's copyrighted, whether you already own the song in another format or not. Here's some snippets from the article: 'If installed in a university, for example, it could look inside students' emails, instant messages and peer-to-peer transfers...', and 'Jacobson said the identification process would not work on an encrypted network, such as is used in several newer file-swapping programs. However, the Palisade software could also act to block those applications from using the network altogether.' Great."

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I AM THE KING OF THE PRAWN PEOPLE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946187)

YOU CANNOT STOP ME

Re:I AM THE KING OF THE PRAWN PEOPLE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946206)

I thought you were the king of the potatoe or was it corn people...

hmmm. shrimp. potatoes. corn.

i'm getting hungry.

Re:I AM THE KING OF THE PRAWN PEOPLE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946336)

Knave! It was Potatoes! The King would never be King of Corn, for obvious reasons.

I shall have you flogged for this, ignorant peasant.

Re:I AM THE KING OF THE PRAWN PEOPLE (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946343)

Maybe we can't but He can [godhatesshrimp.com] .

And, thusly... (5, Insightful)

McCrapDeluxe (626840) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946194)

Encrypted protocols increase in popularity.

What is needed.. (5, Interesting)

bcore (705121) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946231)

..is a P2P app that can run over an SSL connection, disguised as web traffic. I'd bet that could beat this thing. Does such a thing exist?

Re:What is needed.. (5, Insightful)

dolphinling (720774) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946279)

What's wrong with just plain FTP over SSL? No one's going to be blocking FTP anytime soon...

Re:And, thusly... (5, Insightful)

NtroP (649992) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946329)

The article claims that the software could block encrypted communications, apparently indescriminantly. I wonder how that would affect legit transfers like scp, ssh or vpn connections.

I'm probably talking out of my butt here, but what if, instead of the entire "stream" being encrypted, just the "content" was, with a one-time, mutually agreed upon key? How would their software know the difference? It would never have the same "fingerprint" twice. Would it just block any traffic that looked like random noise?

I can see this software pissing a lot of sysadmins off - could you ever be absolutely sure those "ghosts" you've been chasing weren't this software being over zealous?

The parent is right though. This will just prompt those who wish to trade on P2P to take it to the next level. Especially now that the "Big Five" labels are trying to force Apple to charge $2.50 per song! If that happens I will stop buying songs from iTMS and say "screw the bastards, release the hounds", P2P here I come!

wouldn't it be simpler (3, Insightful)

tsunamifirestorm (729508) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946196)

to spend money and give students a paid subscription for music downloads (some colleges have) then spend money tracking file sharing?

Re:wouldn't it be simpler (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946218)

Mod parent up.
If my school did this, I would never
do my occasional "download a popular song
just because it's catchy this week" thing.
That's the only illegal music downloading I do.

Ooh, there should be a liscenced porn archive too,
then I'd be completely legal!

wouldn't it be simpler (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946266)

... if schools stopped spending students' money to do RIAA's bidding, and made them do their own dirty work?

Last I checked ISPs and ISP-like entities aren't required to filter out file sharing traffic.

Re:wouldn't it be simpler (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946293)

I attend a Big 10 School, and while
interviewing for a tech-related position with
the head of dorm network-type stuff, I was told
that well over 90% of the internet traffic (barring worms and the like) can be attributed
to file-sharing. With the tightness of funds
that today's universities are dealing with,
maybe that bandwidth money could be better spent.

Re:wouldn't it be simpler (4, Insightful)

FlipmodePlaya (719010) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946304)

Actually, it would be cheaper to do neither. The U of Rochester, up here, is doing that, and they are under constant criticism for the program. People tend not to like money being spent on music for others (Windows users who live on campus) as opposed to their education, after they had paid for the latter. I don't see why a University is liable for the actions taking place over its network anyway... Make the students agree not to do it, so you can't be blamed, and let the RIAA hang them if they do.

Re:wouldn't it be simpler (4, Insightful)

FsG (648587) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946322)

Simpler, perhaps, but not a particularly good idea. What gives my college the right to decide what kind of music I'm going to listen to, and whom I'm going to buy it from? Despite common belief, not all music is owned by the RIAA, and I certainly wouldn't want a part of my tuition going into the pockets of these monopolists.

frist psot! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946197)

scurry

WiFi. The 3rd Internet (5, Interesting)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946198)

I guess it's time to start bridging those WiFi networks around the world. If you can't beat em, fuck em. I start file sharing over WiFi networks. I look forward to the days of local BBSes again. (WiFi BBS?)

Re:WiFi. The 3rd Internet (-1, Troll)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946331)

Oh, the old "We'll just build a WiFi Mesh to get around that..." line. Why does that always get modded up to +5, despite the fact that it never actually gets built?

Posting this concept on Slashdot is easy. Doing it is a whole different matter. Your neighbors don't likely know how to properly set up their own WiFi, never mind getting it to behave as a router for public traffic going by. Besides, the RIAA will just shut down the filesharers on this system by doing some WarDriving with a lawyer in the backseat...

Mod the parrent down as a troll... nothing to see here.

lol oll omfg (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946199)

this sucks keke

Eck (1)

Lacota (695046) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946201)

I dont think this'll go over well, as there are SOME legal uses for MP3s.

Re:Eck (1)

WhatAmIDoingHere (742870) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946220)

If you RTFSummary, you'd notice that it says "Copyrighted".

Re:Eck (1)

mark-t (151149) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946247)

Copyrighted or no... there are legal uses for mp3's.

An artist can copyright his own work and choose to release it to the public under the terms he dictates. It's still copyrighted, he still owns the work, but it can still be legal to distribute it if the copyright owner says you can.

Re:Eck (1)

Lacota (695046) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946253)

Yes, but copyright does not mean it's illigal, I have several mp3's that are copyrighted, and I have legal use of them. As a) I was the creator of the actual content or b) I have written permission from the Garage/Pub band to distribute said MP3s.

Re:Eck (2, Informative)

l810c (551591) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946369)

From the article:
seeking audio "fingerprints" that could be compared with information in Audible Magic's database

I think they will get a database from the RIAA of copyrighted songs to compare against. I doubt garage bands will be in the database.

Re:Eck (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946265)

RTFS again ;)

well it's not really in the summery just because they are copyrighted doesn't meean its illegal to use ;P. Think it a song was done and then put under a creative commons licence that allows trading but not selling. Then it is legal but copyrighted means the thing will block it thats why the summary has it as a caviot (love that word wish i could spell it ;P)

Re:Eck (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946306)

Not in the summery? What about the fallery, wintery, or springery?

Encrypt everything (5, Informative)

Zorak Man (732141) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946208)

Encrypt IM [sourceforge.net] encrypt file sharing [sourceforge.net] encrypt your email [keyserver.net]

So what happens when encryption becomes illegal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946342)

When only government departments and agents, as well as "licenced" corporate users, are permitted to apply encryption methods? If anybody other than those authorised users is detected using an encryption method and is therefore by legal definition a criminal?

Possibly? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946210)

Jacobson's web site: here [thejacobsons.org]

rar (2, Informative)

giraphe (651004) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946211)

So, what if you .rar the file?

Re:rar (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946344)

or tarballs. those are fun. heck what if you cut off 1 second of the begining and end then it's not the same file.. how exactly are they making sure it's copyrighted? what if we all started using AAC. suddenly MP3 detection is useless.

Hmm... (5, Interesting)

LordK3nn3th (715352) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946214)

How does this effect pay-for programs like iTunes?

Also, is this RIAA-only songs being blocked, or other songs? Copyrighted doesn't always mean "undistributable". Someone may hold the copyright to something but may actually let people distribute it-- am I wrong there?

Re:Hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946262)

It's "affect", not "effect".

Isn't it past your bedtime? It's a school night.

Re:Hmm... (4, Informative)

darkewolf (24563) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946264)

No, you are correct.

I write 'music'. I legally own the copyright, but for the most part I give it away free. Eventually going to press a CD or two but I'd prefer people listen to it, and that does mean filesharing is fine :)

Re:Hmm... (1)

spellraiser (764337) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946267)

Hmmm ... just how easy would it be to thwart this software? Let me see; probably about as easy as thwarting the filtering that Napster installed as a consequence of their legal troubles. Namely, to simply change random characters in the song titles; for example, by using l33t sp34k.

Add the already mentioned issues with legit downloads and inability to work over encrypted networks, and the usefulness of this software starts to seem pretty limited ...

Not a chance. (2, Funny)

rdsmith4 (767227) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946215)

This will never work - if it does in fact suppress the legal transfer of imformation, it's clearly counterproductive and stands little chance of ever being implemented. Universities are more reasonable than that!

...right?

You're right, but for the wrong reason. (1)

AltGrendel (175092) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946297)

Music transfer will be like spam or email viruses. It's a moving target now. They'll put something like this in place, someone figures out a way around it. The manufacture figures out a way to block the changes, start round two. Repeat as often as necessary.

what about my copyright? (5, Insightful)

Bhull (644157) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946216)

how do i tell this software that i want people to trade MY copyrighted music? if they block my file swapping would that be some sort of anticompetitive thing? just because the RIAA and its labels own the majority of music being traded doesnt mean that all the music being traded belongs to them.

Re:what about my copyright? (1)

mao che minh (611166) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946285)

That's an interesting point. Unfortunately, I know the answer already: since you are a little fish swimming in their huge pond, you sort of have to play by their rules. In their pond, money talks. Without enough money and power, they simply out litigate you.

It's really sad when you think about it.

Re:what about my copyright? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946337)

actually, you don't have that right. You cannot force anyone to open their network to permit your traffic to use it. It's the same with email. Someone can say, "You can't block it, it's not spam." People forget, "it's my sandbox, my rules." So if someone puts a block in place, you legally cannot force them to accept and process material from you.

Re:what about my copyright? (1)

Bhull (644157) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946364)

i have the right to allow a college kid to download my music if he/she so choses. im not forcing anything on anyone. this will stop them from legitimatly downloading my stuff. if my isp were to install this software, it would forbid me to upload my music to my website. it IS my right to do these things.

'finger print' (5, Interesting)

Mattwolf7 (633112) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946222)

But how can it determine?

Palisade's version of the technology sits inside a network, rather than inside a file-swapping program. If installed in a university, for example, it could look inside students' emails, instant messages and peer-to-peer transfers, seeking audio "fingerprints" that could be compared with information in Audible Magic's database.

If I send my friend an mp3 of me playing some music how can it tell that from me sending a copyrighted work? Is it reading the 'finger print' and then checking byte by byte? Isn't that going to kill traffic... But couldn't it be beaten by adding one extra byte to the file? Sending in another format?

Re:'finger print' (1)

Jim Starx (752545) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946296)

Well, as it's technologically possible for a computer to identify a song over the phone, I'm sure having a quality digital recording to work off of only makes it easyer. That is a good point about the latency though, how long would the identification take? It would have to stall the packet delivery untill it could be sure it was non copyrighted material.

Re:'finger print' (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946366)

FFT and MD5
Were you looking for something more complicated?

Great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946224)

Yes lets just block it immediately, because we all know in the US you are guilty until proven innocent...

MY Rights?? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946225)

When did trading copyrighted music online become one of my "rights"?

Funny, on slashdot GPL violators are on step below Charles Manson, while copyright infringers of music, movies, and software are somewhere below jaywalkers.

Re:MY Rights?? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946244)

Perhaps that opinion mostly comes from the fact that GPL are mostly violated by people with money to make yet more money without earning it, while copyright infringers (of the most common sort targeted by the music industry) are not looking to make a profit from thier actions.

Re:MY Rights?? (4, Insightful)

Frizzle Fry (149026) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946347)

Perhaps that opinion mostly comes from the fact that GPL are mostly violated by people with money to make yet more money without earning it, while copyright infringers (of the most common sort targeted by the music industry) are not looking to make a profit from thier actions.

If a company puts GPL'd code in their (closed) product, they save the money they otherwise would have had to spend to pay programmers to write equivalent code. If you copy music, you save the money you otherwise would have had to spend to buy it at a store. These are more similar than you seem to be willing to acknowledge.

Re:MY Rights?? (1)

ovit (246181) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946270)

Yup. Their is about 1 sane (when it comes to copyright law) person out of 100 on slashdot these days.

Tony

Re:MY Rights?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946281)

Many supporters of the GPL do not like copyright in principle. If copyright didn't exist there would be no need for the GPL. In that light, it is perfectly reasonable to dislike copyright yet like the GPL.

Re:MY Rights?? (3, Funny)

dolphinling (720774) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946305)

When did trading copyrighted music online become one of my "rights"?

When the internet was invented.

Re:MY Rights?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946318)

The GPL is about fighting fire with fire. Many of its advocates dislike copyright and see the GPL as only a means to an end. In an ideal world it wouldn't exist.

Re:MY Rights?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946327)

When you bought the music?

Recently I went to work overseas for a couple of weeks. After a few days, I missed a CD of mine that I had at home and hadn't really listened to much. I got a friend back home to grab the CD and turn it into FLACs and send them to me. You could call this trading copyright music online, I suppose. And while I can't say I've read every last letter of the law, I'm pretty sure I have a right to do this?

Umm... (5, Insightful)

Ryan.Merrill (548437) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946226)

Wait... it did say that it can look into student's emails and instant messages right? So basically it is giving the University free right to look into student's messages and claim that they are merely looking for illegal songs. There has got to be something that can be done by the students at these universities to block this. This is a total invasion of privacy. If any university tries to impose this onto the students attending, the students must do something. Hopefully we haven't lost all of our rebellious nature.

Re:Umm... (1)

r4bb1t (663244) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946242)

Email and IM aren't encrypted or private in any sense of the word. Try tracing the hops it takes for your email to get to the mail server you're sending it to. For that matter, AOL can log all your conversations if they wanted to. I'm not so sure this would be any different than what can already be done.

Re:Umm... (2, Insightful)

dfung (68701) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946365)

r4bb1t is absolutely right here. People get up in arms because GMail says they will read your mail to index it and that seems like an invasion of privacy. In fact, there's nothing that would stop AIM from capturing all your IM chatter.

Except of course, that if they did that, there's a danger that they'll become liable for the content of the information that's passing through. This arose before when it went to the courts as to whether ISPs are liable when their accountholders harbor kiddie porn on the ISP's computers.

If AOL/AIM had the ability to scan for possible terrorist actions, porn, or the next Columbine, and DIDN'T intercede, then potentially they would be open to enormous damages. If you were a 9/11 victim and you found out that AIM was the facilitator for planning an attack (and I absolutely am not implying that!), you can bet that AOL would become a lawsuit target after everybody realized you won't get a multi-million dollar settlement from selling the terrorist's apartment junk.

This issue of possible liability will probably prevent Palisade from getting anywhere. I'm sure that AIM reserves the right to scan your IM, but probably zealously makes sure that it's not doing that. Now, when they get a subpoena from the Justice Nazis, that's a totally different question.

Re:Umm... (1)

xSquaredAdmin (725927) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946352)

Most universities probably have a clause in their network usage agreement stating that they are allowed to interecept and view any data transmitted over their network, and if they don't, they probably will be doing that soon.

Well-intentioned software, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946228)

If you can hear it and if you can see it, it can be copied.

The PHBs insist upon wearing ties, not realizing a tie shuts down the oxygen reaching their brain. Won't they ever learn?

Stenography (3, Funny)

dduardo (592868) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946230)

I wonder how this technology will hold up against stenography. Let me think about it for a moment. Hmm...

Re:Stenography (2, Funny)

Darth Coder (579139) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946260)

Why, do you have a protocol for P2P via court reporters?

Re:Stenography (2, Informative)

casuist99 (263701) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946268)

Perhaps you mean Steganography? [wikipedia.org]

Somehow I suspect it would not prevent file sharing via that sort of method, but there are simpler methods out there. If you're sending it to a friend, why not just PGP encrypt the file and send it to them? Then no one would know what you're sending, and it's a heck of a lot more secure than steganography (see recent posts on /., other sites).

Re:Stenography (1)

maxbang (598632) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946345)

Sure, for a simple transfer to one user it would work, but that's not really p2p filesharing, is it? If your method were encorporated into a simple, one-click method for encrypted communication for everything from directory listing to transfers then it could work. I don't know how it would prevent the admins from catching on and shutting down that network traffic if it ever did take off. But I see your point about them not being able to determine what is being transferred, thus providing them zero factual basis for stopping the network. Is this something freenet would be able to bypass easily?

Re:Stenography (4, Funny)

maxbang (598632) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946274)

I think you're on to something here. Writing all of your songs in shorthand, scanning them, then emailing the resulting tiff files will prove no match for this anti-filesharing initiative.

How will this work any better than spam filters? (4, Interesting)

digitalvengeance (722523) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946232)

From the article:

"seeking audio "fingerprints" that could be compared with information in Audible Magic's database."

We've tried database-oriented filters to stop spam in the form of keyword lists and the like for years, yet spam is more of a problem today than it was 5 years ago. Why won't the same techniques that let spam slip past our filters let content slip past these filters? Add a byte here or there, run a very light encryption routine over a file and bam - one broken filter.

Even if the networks that use encryption in the protocol itself are stopped - encryption on the file level can be used on insecure networks and this software becomes useless.

Josh

Damn fair use scum (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946234)


Damn fair use scum will try to speak up over here, like on any leftist forum. People who have not written a song in their life, people who do not understand art, those who vote Democrats and distribute their software for free, and expect you to pay for services, and when you outsource the services to India, even though you do them an honor of using their products, demand like you pay them for it, but you don't since it's GPL and the 3 Indian contractors are doing a terrific job, all those fanboys of GNU and stuff will start complaining about their fair use and refuse to move to Cuba or other communist fucked-up country even if you buy them airfare and sack lunch.

Re:Damn fair use scum (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946300)

Settle down there, Valenti.

Will it look inside... (2, Insightful)

ChangeOnInstall (589099) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946235)

...of an SSH tunnel? :)

Re:Will it look inside... (1)

xSquaredAdmin (725927) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946371)

Hell, you don't even to RTFA, just RTFP!

"Jacobson said the identification process would not work on an encrypted network"

I bet it doesn't work with ogg! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946240)

And just the other day people were saying it'd never catch on.

someone will use this for sure (3, Interesting)

neurosis101 (692250) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946241)

Despite the restrictions of the softwared, I'd bet that a University for sure will pick this up. Eventually what will happen is some people on the network won't be able to download some voice recording or some file send to themselves or something and a big fuss is going to erupt. That or some privacy issue is going to kill it.

The university I attend has explicit privacy rules, available for everyone to read. If I recall correctly this sort of thing would violate those rights awarded by the school and as soon as someone brings it up it'll disappear.

Re:someone will use this for sure (3, Interesting)

crackshoe (751995) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946258)

NJIT (New Jersey Inst of Tech) has something similar to this in place, and has for this most resent semester. we get around it by zipping the files or modifying the suffixes.

yeah.... (1)

mesach (191869) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946250)

I'll stick to Usenet

New Build (1)

thegreat682 (664186) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946251)

'If installed in a university, for example, it could look inside students' emails, instant messages and peer-to-peer transfers...' In related news, Palisade Systems has now finished build 1984 of PacketHound

so archive it (5, Insightful)

tintub (733763) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946252)

Is this software going to intercept any archives (.rar, .tar.gz, .zip etc.), unarchive them and check them? I'm not against such software - Universities have a right to disallow file trading on their networks, just as I have a right to use an ISP which doesn't use such software for my home connection. However, I just think that this won't work, at least not without blocking or hindering so much legitimate use that everyone revolts against it.

Re:so archive it (1)

tintub (733763) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946284)

and also, I should ask the obvious question: can it do .ogg ???

Re:so archive it (1)

protocol420 (758109) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946363)

i sure hope it look in archives! ever heard of a decompression bomb? 6k file de-compresses to 100Gb, or something similar. google it

Lame. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946255)

However, the Palisade software could also act to block those applications from using the network altogether.

Holy crap! They've invented the firewall!

And doesn't this whole anti-filesharing thing pretty much smack of the antivirus game at this point? Every time you come up with a way to kill one, two new ones show up that you're not sure what to do with. The effect on stopping the phenomenon is nil, just one more IT guy required for every hundred users.

an interesting point (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946257)

And how exactly can it detect copyrighted works transfered through, say, a VPN?

It can't.

Blocking the ports is asinine because there ARE legitimate uses.

Gates offers his own solution to protecting IP (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946271)

Microsoft founder Bill Gates is scheduled to make a press release Friday morning to announce his partnership with the MPAA and RIAA to release a product that he guarantees can block all illegal file sharing 100%.

The solution will be called "Knife". This aptly named solution will entail taking a sharp pointed object to cut a network connection cable in half. Knife is to be released in a Home ($99 - straight edge) and Professional ($199 - serrated) version.

Rumors are circulating about a WiFi solution Gates has pondered entitled "Complete Technological Annihilation via Nuclear Bomb Generated EMP fields".

Both are expected with a Fall 2004 release date.

A simple way to get around this. (-1, Redundant)

/dev/trash (182850) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946275)

I didn't read the article, but on first glance I'd say that if what you sent was encrypted, there would be no way for a program to sniff and see what was being sent.

What about legal material? (1)

Professor D (680160) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946277)

So what happens when I log into iTunes and listen to a song preview? How does the software distinguish me listening to a perfectly legal snippit versus an illegal download?

What happens when I buy the song from iTunes and download it to my computer. Will they reimburse me if they block my legally purchased song?

What about streaming audio? Will I only get to listen to the stupid DJ's talking between the songs?

Does this software violate the DMCA by illegally decrypting encrypted channels between me on the road and my secure, legal music server at home? how about breaking into my VPN? Or listening into plain old HTTPS/SFTP/SCP/rsync-over-ssh ...

Or is this just some marketing-speak BS about some crappy pattern recognition software that doesn't really work (ie image 'watermarking' that survives recompression) ...

Copyright-status repository? (4, Interesting)

mfh (56) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946278)

> They want to take the position of not filtering out all peer-to-peer [traffic], stopping copyrighted works but not the other content."

Here's the problem: how do RIAA and MPAA distinguish, legally, between copyrighted material that is permitted (fair-use), and that which is not? I'm talking about articles, fair-use media vs. illegal-to-distribute-or-possess copyright media. How do these watchdogs inform the public of such differences? The onus is truly on the RIAA/MPAA if you ask me. The story, strangely, is "Copyright © 2004 CNET Networks, Inc. All Rights Reserved," which begs to question... how can a twelve-year-old truly understand this discombobulated law?

That's the problem with the whole thrust of the RIAA argument against P2P (that the illegal trading of this copyrighted material hurts business). What about Internet articles? These articles are copyrighted works, published to the Internet by their respective owners, but quite often articles are mirrored by websites like Slashdot. Sometimes the copyright owners like this mirroring, and other times they do not (they seem to flip flop on it, depending on the source). Therefore, the lack of consistancy *should* make it extremely difficult to win a copyright case, although somehow the owners always win.

IANAL, yet my argument is that two distinct laws ought govern copy protection, because this fork-in-the-road is quite ambiguous. Firstly, how are any of us to know the status of copyrighted materials downloaded? What if we download a song over P2P, expecting the song to be one of the songs that are fair-use, and we pass the song along to a ton of other people? Secondly, how do we distinguish between the legality copyrighted articles that are online and music, and the fair-use music?

Because there exists no truly accurate copyright-status repository, I think all the people under suit from a watchdog might have some ammunition.Without a bona fide/impartial database of illegal filenames and md5 checksums to verify your current P2P files, how can you be responsible for these files?

Furthermore, if you downloaded a song from P2P, you should legally be able to upload it back to that P2P, if you truly believed the files to be fair-use, which could truly be any file.

Stopping secure transmissions (2, Insightful)

zymurgy_cat (627260) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946282)

Uh, correct me if I'm wrong, but how can one stop all "secure" file swapping communications w/o killing off unrelated important stuff? I tunnel through anonymizer.com when I surf, and I imagine any file sharing program worth its salt could do a similar type thing through the same port (22). Wouldn't they end up not only killing file sharing but also people checking their bank accounts, registering online, buying stuff on Ebay, etc?

As for looking into email, sheesh! Public key encryption will avoid that, and any attempt to block those types of communications would be rather stupid and overreaching.

IRC? (1, Insightful)

I Love this Company! (547598) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946283)

I'm interested to see how this will affect those who download from Usenet and IRC, my two favorite ways of getting music. Surely they can't block newsreaders and legitimate IRC clients.

This will work for about ten seconds (5, Interesting)

Poilobo (535231) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946287)

If this is based on fingerprinting technology it would be pretty trivial to cutoff the Type 1 and Type 2 tags, reverse the content and stick'em back on. Reverse the process after downloading. Of course you could always UUencode the song and add a zip extension to it or a multitude of other tricks to hide what your doing.

Never underestimate the power of broke, bored, determined college students.

Legal Use? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946288)

So, I tape class today, and send it to you via email because you live on the opposite side of campus from me (or you are at your parents having a birthday for Granny). But now the MP3 of the lecture recording can't be sent.

So where's my... (1)

Dragonshed (206590) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946298)

So, where's my encryption plug-in for Azureus and bittorrent trackers man?

Seriously, it's a proverbial game limbo, where the commercial interests setup up to stomp out piracy, and piracy reinvents itself instead of dying. I think the pirating trends on the internet will continue indefinitely, at least until the nature of the network itself changes.

iTunes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946307)

what about that wildly popular cat iTunes. Will those downloads be blocked. You don't use a web browser to interface but it does work thru the http protocol does it not?.

Can i get some names.. who (legal downloads) are being blocked. I'd like a feel for the situation.

This does sound rather impossible i mean how? are they gonna check the hashes? just change a little osmething and that's useless.

Re:iTunes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946368)

don't bother modding me down.. i didn't see (#8946214) [slashdot.org]

Slashdot: News for trolls. Stuff that's biased. (2, Informative)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946309)

it will also stop legal song downloads. The software blocks anything that's copyrighted, whether you already own the song in another format or not.

Uhm... no. That's not a legal download. That's a rationalization that some people have tried to claim, but it's not exactly one the courts have confirmed. You can format-shift your own copy of a song, but you can't take somebody else's copy of a song you happen to own a copy of in another format.

Unless you're the copyright holder, you don't really "own the song", you own a "copy of the song" that you're allowed to use. If all you've done is just buy the overpriced CD, you're still not allowed to distribute a copy of your copy under any conditions...

If you want to get picky... (1)

NivenMK1 (755271) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946310)

It wouldn't be so hard to just use some compression program to alter the file's contents and thereby thwart the new software. Either that or people could start trading .ogg files around, that would fix it.

Look, it's easy! Just ban music. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946313)

Ban software. Make having an Internet connection a felony. Actually, just ban computer ownership for everybody except corporate and government executive management. Then legislate for a new tax to cover the cost of enforcing these bans, to be split 50-50 between the government and the RIAA/MPAA.Problem solved. Everybody happy.

Trivial Obfsucation, or stenography (1)

sPaKr (116314) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946317)

Uh wont trivial obfsucation defeat this? Really we need to invest time into stenography as it should defeat this process. The university deplopment doesnt make much sense as one good CS major will tell everyone else to use steno and whamo everyone defeats it. You might have a play where users dont know each other or dont commuincate much to each other ala ISP.

I call BS (1)

Wolfier (94144) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946324)

Just another company trying to make a quick buck.

I doubt that it can even recognize a ROT-13 Mp3 attachment renamed "readme.txt".

It has a lot of catchups to do when students start sending encrypted traffic through ordinary channels. (an easy example, IM file transfer of a password-protected ZIP file)

So... (1)

lightspawn (155347) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946335)

When is the army going to install this in Iraq? [wilmingtonstar.com]

Oops, I forgot we don't deserve the same freedom as the Iraqis. Silly me.

Oh, No! Not SSH?!? (1)

pjkundert (597719) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946339)

Jacobson said the identification process would not work on an encrypted network, ...

Hmmm. Since I (and undoubtedly many others, I'm sure) use SSH for everything, I wonder how they plan to shut down even an insignificant fraction of any kind of sharing?

SSH (1)

mrpuffypants (444598) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946341)

IF I use an SSH tunnel to bore out to a server outside their net would they also block SSH? Should we be blocking IP too? After all, bad things can go across TCP/IP networks!

RTFA, - Geez.... (3, Interesting)

byronne (47527) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946354)

neither RIAA nor Audible Magic had given them a demonstration of the filtering tools. Industry trade group P2P United says it has repeatedly contacted the company asking to see the filters in action.

Ikezoye said he still has not demonstrated the technology for the peer-to-peer companies.


This brings up a ton of questions:
- What are they looking for in the content of P2P traffic?
- What defines copyrighted or 'controlled' material? Bootlegs won't be in there...
- If it ain't installed in the client, where is it installed?
- Will this work on server based P2P like soulseek?
- What possible gain is to be had by filtering this?

Studies have already shown that CD sales increase where there is a market of 'try before you buy'. (Australia, for example) When is the RIAA going to wake up and realize that the biggest marketing tool in history is at their command and they don't have to do a damn thing to prevent it?
Radio killed the vinyl star? Nope.
Video killed the radio star? Um, nope.
MP3 killed the video star? Maybe, but absolutely to the artists' benefit and not some fat f*ck from Clear Channel.

Filtering is way too invasive to even be considered an option. Sheesh.

Legal P2P? (2, Insightful)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 10 years ago | (#8946362)

If they've got software that can "name that tune" as it passes by in MP3... isn't that the holy grail for legalizing P2P?

All it would take is some authorizing legislation, and every time a P2P song passes through the toll booth, a few pennies (quanity specified in the law) get transfered to the song owner. Those pennies can either be asorbed by the ISP as part of their service, or they can pass it along to the customer as part of their bill.

There you go. If it can block it, it can log it too...

Audible Magic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946370)

Audible Magic [audiblemagic.com] is another "tool' that performs TCP resets when it detects what it believes to be illegal file sharing.

This type of activity is introducing a frightening level of interference in the network as a whole. Imagine trying to troubleshoot network problems caused by tools such as these "accidentally" dropping network connections.

I'm torn in two (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8946372)

I'm torn in two over whether this is a good thing or not. OK, to be honest, I'm not torn at all, but I have to admit that after talking to a lot of people I have come to the conclusion that over 95% of all downloads on p2p networks are illegal sharing of music. The problem with this system is that it blocks the 5% of legitimate downloads.

Let me give an example. I live in a country where the use, possesion, growing and sales of marijuana is illegal, even if it's for saving someone with glaucoma or MS, and simply speaking out against these laws can draw attention from law enforcement and gov't types that would rather have us shut up rather than try and create a better world through civilized education and political activism. We use p2p file trading (bittorrent and WinMX) in order to distribute rather large video clips and audio files, partly because we can't afford high-badwidth servers overseas. These files are copyrighted by us, but we do want to distribute them, for free, and our medium is p2p sharing. I recognize that what we do is probably ~0.01% of the way p2p networks are actually used, but it is a legit use.

In a sense though, the illegal music/movie file trading scene has given us an additional edge. There are a lot of people using p2p that wouldn't if it hadn't been for the free music. The medium itself probably wouldn't have been developed so fast and so well either, for the same reasons.

So while I don't condone the illegal trading of files, I personally see it is a "grey area" where it may be illegal, but there probably is more benefit than not. (And I won't even go into the "but they wouldn't have paid for the music anyways" argument.)

Just a thought.
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