RapidShare reveals secret to abolishing online piracy: crack down on linking sites, DUH

RapidShare reveals secret to abolishing online piracy: crack down on linking sites, DUH

No doubt at some point today, you stopped and thought, “I wonder what’s going on at the Technology Policy Institute Forum in Aspen today…” Well, TMT is here to help answer that omnipresent question. As it turns out, RapidShare’s Chief Legal Officer Daniel Raimer was on hand to talk to the group about the real problem with online piracy. As he frames it, it’s not legit cloud services like RapidShare that are perpetuating the prevalence of illegal online file-sharing, but the ‘linking sites’ that direct users to copyrighted materials hosted in clouds. Get rid of the linking sites, and poof, no more internet piracy of copyrighted materials.

To that end, RapidShare is advocating for the adoption of a ‘responsible practices’ document that it drafted. Instead of having the government step in and regulate, RapidShare would prefer that everyone voluntarily play by its rules so as not to restrict the creative possibilities that cloud-based technology holds, much in the same way that industry standards and practices have been established and adopted in the advertising and credit industries. That would appear to be a sensical and appropriate way to handle the issue, but the major labels disagree, wishing for further regulation of the internet to protect their intellectual property.

To recap:

• Linking sites = bad
• Cloud services = good
• Government regulation = bad
• Industry standards = good
• Major labels = desperate to hold on to a dying business model

Regardless of how the issue is handled in the future, people will continue to find a way to use the internet to share intellectual property, whether it’s legal or not, so all parties involved should probably focus on monetizing that instead of trying to think of new ways to prevent it from happening.

• RapidShare: http://rapidshare.com
• Technology Policy Institute: http://www.techpolicyinstitute.org

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