Aussies consider auditing music collections for piracy

Australia's government is looking at plans to inspect travelers' gadgets for pirated music at airport checkpoints. Moreover, the proposal is said to be part of broader international treaty discussions. From PC World:

Under the agreement, agents would be able to issue "criminal sanctions" -- fines, or theoretically even jail time -- if they discover pirated tracks on your player. And to think, here you figured the only risk of downloading the latest Hannah Montana tune was complete and utter embarrassment if your friends found out.

As ideas go, it's stupid beyond comprehension: there's no reliable way to know if music was illegally copied. Banning MP3 files is just Napster-era dumbness back for second helpings, given that the music industry itself now knows that DRM is self-defeating. That it's being made an airport security issue is the really knock-eyed part.

Pirated Music Crackdown...at the Airport? [PC World]
Australian Government Proposes Checking MP3 Players at Airports [Gadget Lab]

About Rob Beschizza

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