From Good Morning Silicon Valley:
Orrin Hatch must be off his meds again. On Tuesday, the senator introduced new legislation that would let artists and entertainment companies sue the developers of technologies, like peer-to-peer, that "induce" copyright violations. "This bill remedies a threat to the security of copyrights as well as to our citizens and children. Some corporations distributing so-called 'peer-to-peer filesharing software' have hit upon a truly malicious business model," Hatch said in a statement. "These corporations know better than to break the law themselves so they profit from infringement by inducing users of their software to do the 'dirty work' of actually breaking the law. Because about half of the users of this software are children, this for-profit piracy scheme mostly endangers children who are ill-equipped to appreciate the illegality or risks of their acts." Hatch insists his bill is designed solely to protect children from the lure of a technology that is intended to help them break the law. But clearly it will do quite a bit more than that. If enacted it will inevitably stifle the development of future technologies. The bill "will chill the development, if enacted, of not only peer-to-peer technology, but wonderful new information tools yet to be devised," Adam Eisgrau, executive director of P-to-P trade group P2P United, told PC World. "Don't buy the hype. Any member of Congress who supports this bill is voting, without so much as a hearing, to undo more than a century of solid copyright case law that has protected innovators and technology from the terrible power of entrenched industries and, in the process, created the American economy."