Who put all the music on the internet in the first place? It’s hard to fathom that every song was owned by individuals who suddenly got the same idea at the same time. By the time file sharing became popular, the music was already there. Technology could rip your old 78s, 45s and albums to mp3s. Players and earbuds made the music portable. The horse was out of the barn with the music industry grabbing for the reins.
The war on piracy is an issue brought about by a single industry. Copyright law changed from protecting creative property to virtually everything on the internet having the potential to be illegal. Turning downloaders into thieves had impact but the fight moved into the large arena of internet freedom of innovation and information and who would be in charge of content. Blacked-out sites and a public outcry over SOPA and PIPA legislation halted its progress. Or did it?
Do your ISP and Google fit into the SOPA and PIPA conversation? They are apparently willing to become the internet police to combat reportedly illegally flowing bits of data and, on behalf of the entertainment moguls, privately scrutinize industry competition. Beware of anyone with enough power to tamper with internet site access with little more than a ‘request.’ Fear an ISP that monitors your account by a bit of data perceived to be questionable content.
There was outrage when the People’s Republic Of China passed censorship regulations in that website content could be blocked or removed and its citizens’ access monitored. It is disturbing how close this comes to the China laws. In our free society, access to information is critical to development and innovation. Compliance by the internet machines to one industry’s demands establishes a standard toward greater internet censorship.
Mega-media has a problem. Fix it yourselves. The internet is not your toy.