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Saturday, July 24, 2004
Senator wants to ban P2P networks

The chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary said Thursday that a ban on file-trading networks is urgently required but agreed to work with tech companies concerned that devices like Apple Computer's iPod would be imperiled.

As Cnet reports

"...Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, said he intended to move ahead with the highly controversial Induce Act despite objections from dozens of Internet providers and Silicon Valley manufacturers. The Induce Act says "whoever intentionally induces any violation" of copyright law would be legally liable for those violations.

Hatch added, however, that he welcomed comments from critics. "If you help us, we just might get it right," he said. "If you don't, we're going to do it. Something has to be done. There's no way to solve these problems so everyone's totally pleased."

The Induce Act, which enjoys broad support in the music industry and from a handful of software companies, is designed to overturn an April 2003 ruling from a California judge that said StreamCast Networks, which distributes Morpheus, and Grokster were not liable for copyright infringements that took place using their software. Critics of the bill warn that it could make hardware makers like Apple and Toshiba--and even journalists--liable for products and reviews that could "induce" the public to violate copyright law..."

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