Intellectual Property Wars

Wired News: Fight Rages over Digital Rights. Princeton professor Edward Felten’s team at Princeton broke Verance’s watermarking system, but they weren’t allowed to publish the hack because it would run afoul of the (Digital Millennium Copyright Act’s) anti-circumvention statue.

Once again we see how the DMCA is overturning traditional principles and rights. The owners of intellectual property are at war with the users, because they think we’re all a bunch of thieves.

In the case at hand, Felten is being prohibited from publishing proof that the watermarking scheme is breakable, because that would violate the terms of the DMCA. Who gains from this?

In the end, it won’t be the owners of intellectual property. They’ll fool themselves into thinking they have secure information, when in fact it isn’t.

Man of ‘Integrity’

Salon: Can John Ashcroft be stopped?. With Ashcroft those same healthcare profiteers have won the grand prize, but they paid well for it. Between 1994 and 1998 the pharmaceutical industry, insurance industry and various anti-consumer healthcare lobbies paid out nearly $1 million in contributions to Ashcroft’s reelection campaign. Ashcroft returned the favor on multiple occasions.

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