BitterSweet Symphony

You Can Click But You Can’t Hide

Posted on: April 19, 2011

By: Tabitha Overstreet and Amy Leonhardt

If you attend the University of Louisville and are wondering why you recently received an email in your inbox about music piracy it’s because the university it beginning to crack down on illegal downloading on our campus.

For music lovers everywhere the chance to get a song for free is close to irresistible and with the abundance of peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing programs on the Internet, it is easier than ever. However, file sharing programs may be widely available, but sharing music this way is still illegal.

Physical music sales, as in CDs, records, etc., have gone down over recent years with digital music sales increasing correspondingly. Fans find it much more convenient to download select songs or albums from the comfort of their home. A simple internet search for music downloading brings up dozens of websites catering to people everywhere who want to obtain music.

Here’s the deal: musical works, like our favorite songs from Lady Gaga, are protected under the Copyright Act.  This means that reproducing copies of the work and sharing it with other people without the copyright holder’s explicit permission is an infringement of the copyright. Those who violate copyright laws can face hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines, and even be subject to serving time in prison.

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The Recording Industry of America (RIAA) takes charge of maintaining piracy.  They make it their job to monitor internet activity in universities, businesses, as well as in home to be sure illegal downloading is not taking place.

U of L’s policy follows along with all the copyright laws.  At U of L if you are caught stealing music you could face various consequences.  They handle it in steps:

  • 1st offense copyright infringement: 7 day internet access suspension starting from date of copyright form submission.
  • 2nd offense copyright infringement wireless: 30 day internet access suspension and meeting with staff from Enterprise Security.
  • 2nd offense copyright infringement dorm: 30 day internet access suspension and meeting with staff as well as Decision making class and research paper to be determined by RATS (Residential Housing).
  • 3rd offense copyright infringement: Suspension of internet access remainder of semester.
  • 4th offense copyright infringement: Suspension of internet access indefinitely.

The RIAA works in accordance with U of L to monitor illegal downloading. They alert Information Technology (IT) of the illegal downloading and precautions are taken.  According to Andrew Davis of IT, once U of L is told they quickly take the steps listed above.

The University is taking this very seriously and is doing its best to stand by the RIAA’s goal to end the downloading of music illegally.

The important thing to remember when it comes to piracy is just DON”T DO IT!  Whether your a student at the University of Louisville or a housewife downloading Barney songs for your child, the RIAA is watching. So be warned – that free song could cost you more than you ever expected.


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1 Response to "You Can Click But You Can’t Hide"

[…] My (anything under the sun) Blog {April 21, 2011}   You Can Click But You Can't Hide (via BitterSweet Symphony) By: Tabitha Overstreet and Amy Leonhardt If you attend the University of Louisville and are wondering why you recently received an email in your inbox about music piracy it's because the university it beginning to crack down on illegal downloading on our campus. For music lovers everywhere the chance to get a song for free is close to irresistible and with the abundance of peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing programs on the Internet, it is easier tha … Read More […]

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