Science fiction, fantasy, & horror - web design, graphic design, interactive media development by greententacles

Science Fiction, Fantasy, & Horror - Web Design, Graphic Design, Interactive Media Development by Greententacles 2019-06-18 GMT


GreenTentacles > Articles > Nine Shades of Green (opinion/rants) >

I'm Against the SSSCA

~ by N. E. Lilly (March 2002) ~

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I'm not advocating the wholesale piracy of anyone's work. And, I personally believe that the act of trading many of the songs on Napster and other file swapping systems may have been illegal in many cases. I believe that artists, producers, and even distributors should be paid for their work. The end result of artists, producers, and distributors not being paid for their work is the collapse of an industry, pure and simple.

BUT, that in no way makes me think that the Security Systems Standards and Certification Act (SSSCA) is a good idea.

Essentially, what the SSSCA does is outlaw all computers that aren't hardwired to protect copyrighted material! Anything with a transistor will essentially be regulated by the government.

The executive vice-president of the Walt Disney Company, Preston Padden, said in an interview with , 'this bill is going to speed the entertainment content into the online broadband revolution, create consumer demand, and get broadband going.'

Is he kidding? Let me refute.

Maybe it will make AOL Time/Warner, Disney, and other large entertainment corporations more likely to produce content for Internet distribution. But that's only good for them. The laws are useless without the where-withal (read money) to back it up, which will leave many small 'content providers' exposed to losses.

Many small 'content providers' are already producing content for the web. Despite the 'risks' of the medium. But there is no money in it for the likes of Disney at the moment - the risks outweigh the benefits.

The large corporations are trying to duplicate their content monopolies on the Internet. A medium with which they've had little success to date.

Legal maneuvers do not create consumer demand. Just the opposite: it will drive development back. People would rather have ownership of a DVD, video, or even a book, than lease a movie over the Internet.

There already is consumer demand. The are many independent movies being trading online, as well as bootleg videos, and the file swapping of videos will only incease as compression technologies get better and bandwidth increases.

The passing of the SSSCA and the entrance of the large 'content providers' into the online arena will create the appearance of consumer demand. I predict that in a year's time the large corporations will say that downloads of their online content are up. Which can only be the case since they are not offering online content at the moment.

As for getting broadband going, I've been hearing about 'broadband' since 1996. It will only 'get going' when it is as efficient, reliable, and cost effective as dial-up connections, regardless of what laws exist. Period.

Currently the Entertainment Industry fears the same underground file swapping with videos that the Music Industry fought with Napster. Napster was actually a wake up call for the Music Industry - it exposed the fact that there was a HUGE market that needed to be serviced. If the Music Industry had harnessed the power of Napster, rather that litigating it into oblivion - then they needn't have worried about the 'lost profits' that they were complaining about.

If the SSSCA passes then I intend to invest in print media. Immediately. That's my opinion - and it's subject to change.

To form your own opinion on this topic visit: Wired News:,1283,46671,00.html
Wired News:,1283,46655,00.html

If you have an opinion contrary to this you can respond at

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