As reported by the New York Times, an academic study out of the University of Washington has found the record industry's methods of detecting infringement among BitTorrent users to be "inconclusive". I would appreciate input from the technical community, in our "comments" section, on the extent to which these findings would be applicable to MediaSentry's supposed "detection" of infringement among FastTrack users, as opposed to BitTorrent users, since every single lawsuit of which I am aware involves the FastTrack or Gnutella protocols, rather than BitTorrent. Thanks to my many friends who alerted me to this article and study. -R.B.
The Inexact Science Behind DMCA Takedown NoticesComplete article
By Brad Stone
June 5, 2008
New York Times Technology Section
A new study from the University of Washington suggests that media industry trade groups are using flawed tactics in their investigations of users who violate copyrights on peer-to-peer file sharing networks.
Those trade groups, including the Motion Picture Association of America (M.P.A.A.) Entertainment Software Association (E.S.A.) and Recording Industry Association of America (R.I.A.A.), send universities and other network operators an increasing number of takedown notices each year, alleging that their intellectual property rights have been violated under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
Many universities pass those letters directly on to students without questioning the veracity of the allegations. The R.I.A.A. in particular follows up some of those notices by threatening legal action and forcing alleged file-sharers into a financial settlement.
But the study, released today by Tadayoshi Kohno, an assistant professor, Michael Piatek a graduate student, and Arvind Krishnamurthy, a research assistant professor, all at the University of Washington, argues that perhaps those takedown notices should be viewed more skeptically.
The underlying study: "Challenges and Directions for Monitoring P2P File Sharing Networks – or – Why My Printer Received a DMCA Takedown Notice" By Michael Piatek, Tadayoshi Kohno, and Arvind Krishnamurthy (PDF)
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Keywords: digital copyright law online internet law legal download upload peer to peer p2p file sharing filesharing music movies indie independent label freeculture creative commons pop/rock artists riaa independent mp3 cd favorite songs intellectual property