Privacy v Piracy

November 2005

Record Labels, Internet
by Mark Watts & Myles Jelf of Bristows, Solicitors

An interesting article on which investigates some of the concerns online users have where their basic privacy rights are being eroded away by the state, software companies and internet service providers amongst others but in the context of rampant software and music piracy: “the distribution of intellectual property content such as books, films, and music is increasingly electronic and new technology, such as Digital Rights Management (DRM), is becoming more popular amongst copyright owners, enabling the monitoring of private ‘consumption’ of their content. Also, the possibility of significant IP infringing acts taking place at home is increasing, through the popularity of Peer-to-Peer (P2P) file-sharing networks. Now, more than ever before, both sets of rights need to be considered together. Are they heading for a collision?” Please read this article online :

See also the EFF articles on the ‘warden’ software which can read all of a user’s computer files (including every process on a gamer’s computer, any URLS open and his and his/her email address books) to ‘prevent cheating’ by users of the hugely popular online game World of Warcraft (all gamers who sign up must allow ‘warden’ into their systems: see EFFector 18:36) Also note the rather alarming news that The U.S. Secret Service has admitted that they had asked for tiny tracking ‘dots’ or information to be printed in all documents as part of a deal struck with selected color laser printer manufacturers, ostensibly to identify counterfeiters :

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