Tuesday, October 08, 2002


The New Scientist reports New P2P network funded by US government.

A team of government-funded US scientists is building a Peer-2- Peer (P2P) network that they say will solve technical problems with existing P2P networks, such as Gnutella and Kazaa, and might even one day supercede the web.

The first application will be a distributed version of the web. This raises the prospect of it being very easy to published information anonymously, for example, pirated music and video.

But he does not believe this should curtail his research. "How do you prevent people from doing bad things? I don't think this is a technical problem," says Balakrishnan.

In fact his team is developing algorithms precisely to thwart the censorship or control of information on IRIS. "People are working in our team to prevent removal of information," he says. "I am not interested in censoring the publishing of information."

Ok, so what is the government doing exactly? One moment the government is sabotaging the p2p networks, the next, it is funding a more advanced, anarchic p2p network? Our tax dollars at work.

Personally, I download music (if any copyright agents are reading this, "I'm only kidding!") and I don't think much of it because the record companies aren't losing any sales, because I wouldn't buy cd's even if mp3s were illegal. I'd rather tune into the FREE radio. But I do see the harm of widespread illegal music trading, at least on principal of copyright and capitalism.

The government needs to take a consistent stance against illegal trading of copyrighted mp3s. I know that sounds insane, but there are plenty of people like me who would listen to any free music. Some artists will distribute free mp3s, and their popularity will rocket. Maybe then more and more musicians will bypass the bloated record companies and make music directly for their audience.

Ironically, protecting copyrights may revolutionize music and kill the record companies when all is done. Let's do that.


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