Little Red Blogger

This blog looks at radical politics(with a libertarian socialist slant), music and culture. Marx to Mises, Girls Aloud to Steve Reich...

Location: Wiltshire, United Kingdom

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

File-Sharing is Dead, Long Live File-Sharing!

As usual the mainstream media has got the latest American supreme court decision on file-sharing wrong. British journalists are notoriously technically inept when it comes to technology stories and watching Newsnight last night did nothing to dispel my opinion of that. Kirsty Wark was obviously out of her depth and failed to ask any probing questions of the smug BPI lawyer and just let the Freenet programmer spout his pre-prepared line.

This as well as being extremely annoying, and a waste of good airtime failed to address the real issues behind the court's judgement. Grokster, like Napster is an also-ran it is trying to make money out of an extremely commoditised market, so commoditised that the chief means of sharing ones files is actually free. What mainstream commentators have failed to notice is that the most popular file sharing programs and protocols that exist today are free. They are free, open source and available to anybody through networks like G2, Gnutella, Edonkey et al. Companies like Grokster and Kazaa cannot and will not survive this onslaught of open protocols and open programs, the judgement from the supreme court will hasten their end.

Copyright, like patents are a state imposed and sanctioned monopoly anything that brings their end closer is a good thing. File sharing is dead, long live file-sharing!