RIAA Hacking You Back

The Register has an article about the RIAA using a group of hackers to create a "monitoring hydra" to report to the RIAA what music you may have on your PC.

Ed. Note:CNET now reports that an spokesperson from RIAA is calling this a HOAX. I'm leaving the rest of the article up, since it is still interesting.

The claim is that the RIAA has engaged in a widespread P2P Worm that has infected "95%" of the P2P wielding computers on the Internet.

First, I don't think this is true, because it seems to me that people like Symantec would just love to get their hands on such a program and advertise the fact that they stopped it. Although, you could make a paranoid argument that Symantec is in collusion with the RIAA, but I think there would be substantial claims for lawsuits against Symantec by the users of its products, because this program is clearly a virus.

Second, if this is true it isn abomination and a terrible precident for things to come. The computer industry has spent the last few years trying to criminalize this kind of behaviour, and to say that it is OK for the RIAA to commit such offenses against the unwitting public is a rediculous turn-about.

To make matters worse, the RIAA has enlisted our government, in the guise of Howard Berman (D-Van Nuys, CA), to allow them special dispensation to commit these unprecidented intrusions.

Please write your congresspeople and senators to complain about these bills.

Also, keep on the look out for a new initiative being lauded by Congressman Berman, the convergence of "principles" amongst the BSA (Business Software Alliance), RIAA, and CSPP (Computer Systems Policy Project).

Thankfully, organizations like the EFF are there trying to keep us in a more sane environment. Please don't hesitate to back them in any way possible.