mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

A post on madanthony's favorite subjects -porn, ebay, and P2P

Instapundit links to this post Secular India about a scandal. The ceo of has been arrested because someone was selling child porn on their website. Secular India says this is OK, based on the Napster case.

There are a number of things wrong with this. The first is that the Napster case is not exactly the law of the land yet. The supreme court has recently agreed to hear the Grokster case, in which lower courts have so far upheld that Peer to Peer services are not liable for copywrited content, even if it's most of their traffic. Until it's decided, it's hard to say Napster is clearly correct.

Aside fromt the fact that US court decisions are meaningless in India, there is the fact that there are not as many similarities as one would like with eBay and Napster. Napster content was almost always pirated, while eBay's illegal stuff makes a very tiny portion of content - and eBay makes a very concious effort to remove illegal content when they find it (in fact, some feel they are a bit too active in removing content). I'm assuing that BaaZee, as "an eBay comapany", has similar policies.

The problem with stuff like this is that not everyone seems to understand how online auctions work - for example, this Edmonton Sun article ends with:

Officers have already arrested an engineering student who sold the videos to India's EBay subsidiary

Nope, try again. They didn't sell them to Baazee, they sold them on Baazee. There is a huge diffence between selling child porn to someone, and selling it on their website.


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