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 “.
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.
No, SIAE has nothing to do with the draft of the bill released by Altroconsumo in the past days. Replying to the clamour provoked by the document floating on-line, a supposed anticipation of the final work of an anti-piracy committee that has just been established, the organization now denies any authorship on it. The denial, anyway, does not explain anything about who wrote that document nor why it is so ostentatiously unbalanced in favour of the interests of SIAE itself.
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.
RIAA and the recording majors have said it pretty clearly, that they plan to abandon the path of the legal persecution of single file sharing users to focus on the direct cooperation of ISPs. Waiting to see what such strategy shift will actually mean, for now the USA labels association is engaged on more fronts including those courts which have served for its crusade against P2P.
The holidays between the end of 2008 and the beginning of 2009 haven’t been particularly pleasant for RIAA and the music majors: the America most hated organization (at least as of Internet) is (supposedly) about to change its legal strategy against file sharing by directly engaging providers, but meanwhile one of these ISP raises a monetary issue that does not promise an easy start for the bizarre joint venture between copyright owners and connectivity providers.
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.
That the legal crusade of USA recording companies against P2P haven’t obtained any practical result until now is an hardly refutable matter of fact. If this wouldn’t be enough RIAA, the well-known labels organization and the most active in the harsh defense of copyright at the cost of repeatedly charging the dead and innocent people, will soon have to face daunting judicial adventures, potentially able to bury the massive lawsuits campaign under accusations of unconstitutionality, conspiracy, abuses, fraud and more.
He is a long-time supporter of the utter uselessness of intrusive protection technologies against videogaming piracy, and now Brad Wardell, Stardock’s CEO, takes up the challenge turned to him by the industry by working on a minimal security system that could be good for the labels and at the same time would satisfy the users’ need to not to be pointed out as pirates dangerous for society and business.
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.
The USA recording companies organization is upset that Michael Davis, District Judge involved in the only case from the legal crusade against file sharing ever gone to court, have reconsidered his decisions ruling for a retrial. RIAA now asks that the Capitol v. Thomas case, being defendant the single mother of three Jammie Thomas, isn’t reopened before the judge have taken into consideration the majors’ appeal request.
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.
As widely reported in the news, the preventive seizure (call it “censorship”, “block”, or whatever) of the access to The Pirate Bay from the Italian territory has finally been revoked by a decree of Bergamo Court. Called upon by the Bay admins’ lawyers, the Reexamination Judges have reconsidered the legitimacy of the previous ruling of the Court, deciding that the seizure was essentially illegal. Many, almost anyone have rushed to crow for TPB and the P2P in general, clearly having no clues on the fact that a new storm is about to appear on the horizon, a storm even more dangerous of the simple block of a single website, potentially capable of making, if possible, more tightening and unfair the yet absurd law against file sharing effective in Italy.
After five years of legal threats against tens of thousands of American music consumers, the hands of RIAA, the USA recording labels organization, remain empty or barely over: from any standpoint you look at the matter, states the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the majors have lost the bet to reestablish the control on digital contents delivery while succeeding in antagonizing a huge amount of potential customers, pretty happy to not to give a single cent to those viewing them as “pirates” dangerous for business, artists, music and the entire damn world.
Electronic Arts, the videogames multinational dedicated to the production of endless sequels and to the havoc of creative energies within the small and talented software houses, has once again been able to break up a potential masterpiece and to change it into a chance for controversy, criticism and furious debate about the usual copy protections useful only for losing customers.
UPDATE: the Atlantic v. Andersen lawsuit has finally ended: in the last days RIAA has opened its wallet and has refunded Mrs.Andersen with a sum of 107,951 dollars, exactly 117 dollars over the amount set by the judge to cover the interests due to delay. So the recording companies have been defeated in one of the most glaring legal cases of their crusade against file sharing, and the woman wrongly accused of unauthorized P2P threats now to put them on the grill in the still pending Andersen v. Atlantic lawsuit.
The nightmare of the Andersen family, targeted for three years by the mercenary lawyers of the American majors and related
criminal organizations, has finally ended. A judge has settled that Tanya Andersen, a single woman from Oregon who maintains the young daughter Kylee with a disability pension, have the right to be refunded of 107,834 dollars for the covering of legal fees sustained until now to fight the RIAA accusations of unauthorized file sharing on the rotting KaZaA/FastTrack network.
Brokep reports that the decree with which the preliminary investigating magistrate of Bergamo has ordered the preventive seizure of The Pirate Bay is finally on-line. The resolution, taken by the pim Raffaella Mascarino, contains four “omitted” regarding the suspects and justifies the seizure with the “fumus of crime” of conspiracy to infringe the copyright with lucrative intent and with the presence, among the site users, of a good number of Italian citizens.
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.