Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Anti-Napster Law in NYS Legislature

The New York State Legislature has introduced a proposal that would strengthen laws against file sharing. I'm not 100 percent sure what the actual measure targets, but it seems to be aimed people who use computers for file sharing that aren't theirs.
For a more detailed explanation, here is a summary of the bill (SB 4435 and AB 2916):
Under these new regulations, a person or entity that is not an owner or authorized user of a computer is prohibited from installing or causing a covered file-sharing program to be installed onto the computer without first providing clear notice to the owner or authorized user of the computer that their files may be made available to the public. Such non-owners/nonauthorized users much also obtain consent from the owner or authorized user to install the program. Further, this bill requires affirmative steps to be taken by the owner/authorized user to activate any feature on the program that will make files on that computer avail- able to the public.

Also, under the provisions of this legislation, non-owners and non-authorized users of a computer may also not directly or indirectly cause files to be stored on that computer, which, in turn, could be searched and copied by third parties unknown to the owner. In instances where the owner does authorize their files to be shared, the consumer must still be given the chance to affirmatively select which particular files would be made available.

Furthermore, this bill prohibits a person or entity that is not an owner or authorized user of a computer from preventing reasonable efforts to disable or remove, or to block the installation of execution of, a covered file-sharing program on the computer.

Basically it sounds like Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich has infiltrated the NYS Legislature.

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