The industry is at war against “piracy”, unauthorized releasing and on-line sharing of digital contents, a war fought by using every possible mean and relentlessly abusing propaganda, censorship and political lobbying. But it’s a war worth nothing, and when the majors succeed in restraining access to particularly popular “pirate” sites like The Pirate Bay the net result is that absolutely nothing changes.
The increasing fight against “illegal” downloads on file sharing networks I was talking about the last time is speeding up to a feverish rate, and the new lords of digital steam go to any lengths to prove than on-line copyright is worth more than everything - even more than open Internet access. The industry’s most used tool against unauthorized P2P continues to be censorship, and if that wasn’t enough the MAFIAA (MPAA+RIAA) collective and similar organizations are quick to switch to threats and power abuse.
More than four years have passed since the last time Sir Arthur’s Den dealt with the war against digital “piracy” on P2P networks, and in these few years the clash between the contents industry, users and promoters of the aforementioned contents free sharing became worse and worse. The united lobby of MAFIAA (and ideal yet scary fusion of RIAA and MPAA) did its worst by asking for monstrous monetary compensations, by throwing the releasers in jail and by trying to affirm the idea that “crime” against copyright doesn’t pay anymore.
The news isn’t that fresh, and the topic doesn’t get attention in this period of holidays, presents and thoughtless spending by whom can still afford them (with debts). Nevertheless it’s a problem that everybody, sooner or later, will have to deal with in the upcoming future. Fresh water supplies are, already today, inadequate to satisfy the demand, and in future it will be worse and worse considering the growing needs of those real demographic atomic bombs generally listed under the “developing countries” definition.
How one could ever describe a political leader like Massimo D’Alema, one of the main people accountable for the persistence of that villain named Silvio Berlusconi in the Italian political life of the last 15 years, one that doesn’t know the importance of voting in Parliament when there is the chance to knock out the Government and its majority but doesn’t miss any occasion to demonstrate to the media dictator that he is always ready to reach agreements for promoting their mutual political survival?
While newspapers columns spread ink remembering a mean little television man passed away, the television made by the live continues to offer shining examples of the shit housing there. Says Michele Santoro on his program’s site that “a few days before the start television continues to not inform the public about Annozero opening date. Thus I’m asking you to send the ads we have prepared and that aren’t broadcasted by the network to all of your friends and contacts on the Internet “.
This week Marco Travaglio is out of the video - the reporter says he is recovering from a surgical operation, hence the new installment of column Passaparola is just textual. What remains unchanged is Travaglio’s punctuality in telling the manifest decay of Italian democracy toward Berlusconian nothingness and who knows what after that. However to read every time about servants ready to put out compromising dossiers on their boss enemies, deviated secret services and fascist filing is starting to be too much even for an obsessive guy like myself.
A few days ago, while summing up the many efforts made by Italian politicians to censor Internet and demolish netizens’ civil rights, I also took the occasion to foresee what could have been happened in the future after the final approval of the infamous three strike law by the French Parliament. What happened in the past days simply confirms the legitimacy of those anticipations and opens the doors, in Italy too, to the ultimate surrender of law and common good to the partisan interests of copyright parasites.
Surely 2009 is the most sensitive year for peer-to-peer and the industry crusade against free on-line contents sharing. In Italy we have the previously discussed issues with the incompetence and obscene servility of our representatives, and moving the attention toward Europe things get even worse if possible. Two in particular are the noticeable questions of these weeks in Europe, the conviction of The Pirate Bay crew and the approval in France of the Sarkozy doctrine also known as three strike law or HADOPI law.
The past weeks have marked an unparalleled escalation of the well known inadequacy and inability of the Italian institutions to deal with the Internet, to live their relation with digital technologies by following logic and rationality rather then emotionalism and violence. Conversely our “dear” rulers and members of Parliament have recently shot out a series of amendments, law drafts and opinions to make you goggle if you believe in the importance of Internet as a democratic tool.
There is probably no other case in the world like the one of Giulio Andreotti, the politician survived to himself, the seven-times Prime Minister who sits in the Italian parliament since the times of of the Constituent Assembly and has contributed to establish the Christian Democracy party alongside the statesman Alcide De Gasperi. A Great Old of the republican history, Andreotti is among the other things also a well-known mafioso and mafiosos friend, a thing that sometimes it’s good to recall for truth’s sake, outside of the propaganda and the lies sold by the television regime that currently controls the minds of the majority of Italian people.
To say that in Italy there is no more press but only an endless series of courtesans of the strongest is a pretty trivial thing, that a sober person could consider like qualunquismo if only it wasn’t a pure and simple matter of fact. In Italy the media are dead, they have become zombies artificially kept alive by state robberies and embarrassing money transfers. Just look at what is happening in these days after the demonstration in Piazza Farnese, Rome.
Congratulations, congratulations, the Technical committee against digital and multimedia piracy is born in the Italian ruling rooms, seriously determined to defeat the file sharing phenomenon and above all to have a special care for the industry associations’ desires, whose only purpose has always been to pull out money from any single bit moved on-line. SIAE (the Italian RIAA) is already giving rigorous orders on what to do, so much for the good intentions on the will to listen to representatives of all the parts interested to the matter.
In what sounds as an unexpected and dangerous development of the lasting industry’s war against the P2P users, last Friday the Wall Street Journal has reported that RIAA, after years of intimidations, mistakes, twistings and abuses of the USA judiciary system now wants to change strategy, dismissing its mass lawsuits campaign to focus on the “next level” of the prearranged plan with which the majors would like to survive to the technological progress while keeping forever the privileges from a past (anyone should have this clearly in mind) that will never come back.
While the humorists are discussing about comedy in the age of Barack Obama, the senator elected as an Internet star even before that 44th President of the United States hasn’t took long to become the subject of a good number of quality strips available on the web. Waiting for January 20, the fatal date in which the new commander in chief of the USA declining superpower will move to the White House, Obama is being busy by opening his direct line with the netizens thanks to the weekly address posted on YouTube, writing back (or letting the others do it for him) to an 8 years old teenager letter, coming to the nanometric scale and by obtaining even the Homer Simpson’s endorsement in the most pert American tv show.
When, in the night between the 4th and 5th of November, Barack Hussein Obama II has been elected the 44th President of the United States of America, the world has suddenly stopped. It has been crystallized in the thing by itself, feeling the whole gravity and the importance of an historic moment, and then it has started over to whirling run accelerating and burning down lives and stock markets. What remains is the hope that the promises by Mr.President haven’t been useful only to harangue the crowd, and looking at the matter from the poor Italy in ruin I can’t help to make some considerations also and above all in regard of technology and computing.
The Italian Pirate Party, a non-profit association born in the wake of the broader European initiative to reform the intellectual property, wants to look very closely at the investigations occurred during the Pirate Bay block, turning away the many, still lasting doubts on the behaviour of the tax police agents thereupon the connections redirection toward an Internet address owned by the recording labels.
Roberto Maroni’s occupation is Minister of the Interior for the Italian government, but in his spare time he enjoys to listen to music and, above all, to download it on the P2P. He has never hided it, and he has confirmed this attitude in the last days too, during a meeting with the press at Varese, where he has attended before his participation to Il Festival del Racconto. Accidentally but not too much, the Minister statements come after the establishment of the well known committee against digital piracy under the Prime Minister’s Office, which would like just to fight the file sharing that Maroni periodically advocates.
The recurring theme of this new round of scattered suggestions is the lie. The lie of politicians, that in the United States have turned the citizens rights in waste paper and then have provided legal safe-conducts for the involved telcos, the lie of tobacco companies used to kill their customers with radiations and the lie of majors which continue to talk about “theft” every time a digital copy of an audio track is shared on P2P.
Seasoned by the usually out of line comments by Brokep, The Pirate Bay block currently affecting half of Italy has aroused a partially off-topic controversy on the state of things about freedom of expression in the country, the lasting presence of a despotic creeping regime and the obscure interlacements between the magistracy and the multimedia industry lobbies. I think that some clarifications on the matter, for the Italians as like as for the international public, are perhaps needed.