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Universities Called on the P2P Carpet

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Members of the House came down on representatives of universities for not taking copyright infringement seriously enough:

    The representatives, members of the Subcommittee on Courts, the Internet, and Intellectual Property of the Committee on the Judiciary, told administrators from Pennsylvania State University, the University of North Carolina, and the University of Tulsa that the way to really convince students that illegal file sharing is wrong is to expel or prosecute them.

    ….Rep. William L. Jenkins, a Tennessee Republican, repeatedly asked the administrators whether they had tried to get government lawyers to prosecute recalcitrant students.

    “We don’t handle it that way,” said Mr. Spanier. The university tries first to educate students about copyright infringement and then, failing that, restricts or ends their ability to gain access to the network, he said. [Chronicle of Higher Education]


    Ms. Waters speculated that college officials are too afraid to go after their largely “middle class” student population but probably would not hesitate to prosecute poor students from the inner city.

Well of course she did.

    Rep. Anthony D. Weiner, a New York Democrat, told the university administrators that their students would probably stop illegal file sharing if the computers they used for the activity suddenly ignited in flames.

That might work; or if steel spikes shot out of the keyboard; or if warrior princesses from the isle of Lesbos appeared and beheaded them shrieking “That’s for the RIAA!!”

Was some sort of toxic gas released in the Subcommittee meeting room? Or maybe it has something to do with campaign contributions.

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About Eric Olsen

  • Ryan

    At a university as large as UNC it is pretty much impossible to monitor all of the activity on the network. Who knows how many thousands of people are connected to the network at the same time (both ethernet and wirelessly).

    Also, is it really the university’s position to prosecute students?