Wow. Just...wow. I would just like to preface my post by saying that the Department of Justice image you see to the left was not lifted from this document. It's password protected, and I don't want the DOJ coming after me and treating me like a terrorist or druglord for thinking I copied it.
You might be thinking that I'm not making any sense. Well, I'm not. Neither is the DOJ. I'd like to draw everyone's attention to a little thing called the Chewbacca Defense from South Park. I know, I didn't know the DOJ watches South Park either. I took the liberty of editing the Chewbacca Defense to fit the situation at hand...I hope the DOJ doesn't break down my door for copyright infringement. Without further ado, may I present the DOJ's Chewbacca Defense:
Ladies and gentlemen of the supposed jury, 40+ technology companies and trade associations would certainly want you to believe that the Induce Act is unacceptable and would handicap technological innovation. And they make a good case. Hell, I almost believe it myself!
But ladies and gentlemen of this supposed jury, I have one final thing I want you to consider: This is Chewbacca. Chewbacca is a Wookiee from the planet Kashyyyk, but Chewbacca lives on the planet Endor. Now, think about that. That does not make sense! Why would a Wookiee—an eight foot tall Wookiee—want to live on Endor with a bunch of two foot tall Ewoks? That does not make sense!
Did you know counterfeit drugs may account for eight to ten percent of all pharmaceuticals worldwide? And counterfeit cell phone batteries can cause fires? And don't forget, terrorists are bad people. Interesting facts, I know, but you have to ask yourself, what does any of this have to do with the Induce Act? Nothing. Ladies and gentlemen, it has nothing to do with the Induce Act! It does not make sense!
Look at me, I'm the DOJ defending the Induce Act, and I'm talkin' about Chewbacca, pharmaceuticals, cell phones and terrorists. Does that make sense? Ladies and gentlemen, I am not making any sense. None of this makes sense!
And so you have to remember, when you're in that jury room deliberating and conjugating the Emancipation Proclamation... does it make sense? No! Ladies and gentlemen of this supposed jury, it does not make sense.
If Chewbacca lives on Endor, the DOJ should be able to wire-tap p2p users and revive the Induce Act! The DOJ rests.
The edited Chewbacca Defense above is a quick and dirty summary of the DOJ's Task Force report on intellectual property. I might be making light of the report, but go ahead and read it for yourself - the portion I am referring to is in the introduction, on page iii. I don't know if it was the DOJ's attempt at a policy argument, but the stories of fake drugs and fake cell phone batteries leave a sour taste in my mouth instead of making me feel like I need to mount my horse and ride to fight the good fight against copyright infringers.
As Derek Slater over at A Copyfighter's Musings puts it, the DOJ's report is basically "...supporting greater criminalization of copyright infringement as well as the Induce Act and opposing repeal of the DMCA." Ashcroft does, after all, want an aggressive crackdown on IP theft. Ashcroft says that the IP crackdown "...must be as forceful and aggressive and successful as our response to terrorism and violent crime and drugs and corruption has been."
Riiiiiiiight. Let's put as much manpower behind putting Little Johnny behind bars for downloading the Teletubbies Sing-A-Long as we do behind finding Osama. Quick, we need some smart bombs to drop on Little Johnny's face and his computer. And why would Ashcroft say that he wants to be as successful in this fight as he has been with the war on terrorism and drugs? Last time I checked, our terror alert level was something around hot pink and our record on the drug war was an impressive 0-62.
Anyway, Donna Wentworth from Copyfight writes that the DOJ report outlines exactly how to take the IP fight to the next level. Kind of like what Sylvester Stallone's character in Get Carter would say any time someone made him mad: "...this is going to the next level." For example, if he told someone to make him a sandwich, and that person refused, he would quip: "Go make it, or this is going to the next level." I can only wish the DOJ as much success as the box office smash that was Get Carter. (Seriously though, I love Sylvester Stallone.)
How does Ashcroft and the DOJ want to get to the next level in the IP fight against the p2p problem? Well, through "...more spending, more FBI agents and more power for prosecutors." Which, as Donna goes on to say, means employing things like the Induce Act and anti-TiVo legislation. The plan also details wiretaps for IP crimes and a plan to teach children "respect" for copyright law.
Ya, good luck with that. The DOJ plan is spot on. We should totally treat the war on terro...uh...I mean...the war on IP theft like the war on drugs. After all, D.A.R.E. was really effective. So was prohibition. Oh wait, that's right, they weren't.
But things like the truth aren't important when using the Chewbacca Defense. If you download a song, then you are a terrorist trafficking in counterfeit drugs and cell phone batteries. That means you are a bad person and are going to hell - but not before you do hard time.
The DOJ rests.