Content-producing industries (music, movies, publishing) have been pressing legislators to get draconic laws to protect their business from the evils of file-sharing. They have been getting what they asked for, and brandishing such laws as a club to extort large sums from housewives and college kids all over the planet. On top of that, this kind of legislation has created copyright trolls, protection rackets that, for instance, threaten people with lawsuits associating them with downloading porn if they don’t pony up – just google “prenda law” and you’ll see what I mean.
The lynchpin for the whole argument is the assumption that file sharing harms the bottom line of such industries. This has been taken for granted, but is it so?
Well, apparently not. BoingBoing points out to a study that examines such claims, and does not support that assumption: London School of Economics: piracy isn’t killing big content; government needs to be skeptical of entertainment industry claims.
Some of the biggest battles of the century are taking place around the issue of letting information free; archaic but dominant business models won’t die graciously, so get ready to fight.