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Many college-aged young people see unauthorized music downloading as harmless and donít fully understand its consequences. Illegal downloading presents a serious issue on college campuses and can be costly to the university administration in terms of resources such as excessive use of bandwidth and time spent on responding to infringement notices.

Considerable progress has been made in the growth of legitimate music services, the adoption of technological measures and education and enforcement programs on campuses. Use of legitimate services on campus has grown exponentially. Nearly 130 universities offer their students access to a legal music service and a substantial number of additional schools is expected to join this list in the coming months.

What Colleges and Universities Need to Know About
Illegal file-Sharing and the Higher Education Community

1. What is peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing?
P2P technology enables millions of computer users around the world to find and trade digital files with each other. By using a P2P computer program, a user can scan the hard drives of millions of people and instantly acquire (download) content with the click of a mouse. At the same time, that user can enable the millions of people on the P2P network to copy the contents of his or her hard drive. Unlike email or instant messaging, P2P enables the transfer of billions of files among millions of people without knowledge of identity or even location. It is, essentially, a massive listing and public warehouse of digital content.

2. What is the concern?
While P2P technology itself can be used for legitimate purposes, the predominant – indeed, almost exclusive – use of P2P networks has been to trade copyrighted music, movies, pictures and software. From a legal standpoint, this activity violates copyright holders’ exclusive rights to copy and distribute their works. From a practical standpoint, this activity threatens the entertainment industry’s ability to succeed in the evolving digital marketplace. High transfer speeds are already present on many university networks.

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3. What steps can colleges and universities take to address this problem?
Response to illegal P2P file-sharing generally takes the form of awareness, education, enforcement, implementation of technological measures, and adoption of legitimate online content services. Suggestions include the following:

Develop programs and orientation materials to educate students of their moral and legal responsibilities to respect the rights of copyright owners and to make clear what practices are, and are not, acceptable on the institution's network.

Impose effective remedies against violators of institutional policies and the law.

Adopt filters and other network technologies to detect and prevent infringing activity. Audible Magic, Enterasys and Red Lambda are some of the companies that offer services to universities to detect and block such illegal activity. Contact information is attached.

Adopt legal content delivery services – such as Napster, Ruckus, and Cdigix – on campus to provide a legitimate alternative to stealing.

In addition, administrators should be aware that students often establish internal file-sharing systems on their schools’ local area networks (or “LANs”), enabling students to trade copyrighted files without accessing the public Internet. This activity, while limited to the schools’ own systems, is no less illegal and presents many of the same problems as larger P2P systems.

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4. Where can I find more information about P2P file-sharing on campus?

The Joint Committee of the Higher Education and Entertainment Communities published a White Paper in August 2003 describing the legal liabilities associated with infringing P2P file-sharing.

A revised edition of this White Paper is planned for release in the fall of 2006.

In December 2005, Co-Chairs of the Joint Committee Cary Sherman (President, Recording Industry Association of America) and Graham Spanier (President, Pennsylvania State University) wrote an op-ed piece published in the Chronicle of Higher Education entitled “Thou Shalt Not Pirate Thy Neighbor's Songs.”

In September 2005, the U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Courts, the Internet, and Intellectual Property held an oversight hearing on "Reducing Peer-To-Peer (P2P) Piracy on University Campuses: A Progress Update." Witness testimony, transcripts, and related material can be obtained at http://judiciary.house.gov/Oversight.aspx?ID=191.

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5. What technologies and services are available to colleges and universities to address this issue?

A proactive technology approach has proven to be the most effective solution to deterring piracy. Some schools are blocking particular protocols to stop some or all of the P2P traffic on their networks, realizing that the overwhelming, if not sole, use of these applications on campus is to illegally download and distribute copyrighted works. There are several off-the-shelf, proactive applications that help campuses control network usage, define the scope of campus network bandwidth usage, and deter illegal P2P activity. These applications help maintain the integrity, security, and legal use of school computing systems without compromising student privacy. The technology companies listed below offer diverse network management tools, including filtering, blocking, and custom designed in-house solutions. We encourage universities to determine independently which products may work best in their environment.

1. Audible Magic
985 University Avenue, Suite 35
Los Gatos, CA 95032 USA
(408) 399-6405

2. Bradford Networks
162 Pembroke Road
Concord, New Hampshire 03301
(603) 228-5300

3. Enterasys
50 Minuteman Road
Andover, MA 01810
(978) 684-1000

4. eTelemetry
41 Old Solomons Island Road, Ste. 202
Annapolis, MD 21401
(888) 266-6513
(eTelemetry provides technology for the automated association of IP addresses with specific computers and user/students accounts)

5. Mirage Networks
6801 N. Capital of Texas Highway
Building 2, Suite 200
Austin, TX 78731
(866) 869-6767

6. Packeteer
10201 N. De Anza Boulevard
Cupertino, CA 95014
(408) 873-4400

7. Red Lambda
2180 West State Road 434
Suite 6184
Longwood, Florida 32779
(407) 682-1894

8. Anagran, Inc.
580 North Pastoria Ave
Sunnyvale, CA 94085 U.S.A.
(408) 701-0880

Additional educational information and resource links on downloading music:



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CyberPilot's License
The CyberPilot's License is dedicated to the study of web ethics and the development of healthy online learning environments. Students, teachers, parents and policymakers are welcome to join our discussion forums, examine online resources, and help create an archive of educational materials.

Convicted copyright pirate Mike Nguyen has created a site to educate young people about the risks of on-line piracy. This site contains a downloadable copy of "Net Monkey Weekly" an entertaining and informative newsletter directed at children, which addresses the ills of piracy.

National CyberEducation Project
The Media Institute and the University of Richmond Law School have produced, What Do You Think?, a documentary on intellectual property and file-sharing. The documentary will be used as part of the Copyright Roadshow and other programs with their National CyberEducation Project. To find out more or to get a personalized response to questions about the documentary or the issues it addresses please call, 804-289-8681.

Pro Music
Pro Music is an international website that supports legitimate online services and provides information about copyright laws as well as artists speaking out about piracy.

What's The Download?
“What’s the Download”, a comprehensive public education campaign created by The Recording Academy, strives to empower consumers to make informed, ethical and legal decisions when getting their music through digital technology while understanding the part they play in the future of music.

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