AfterDawn: Tech news

Conservative group slams Induce Act

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 26 Sep 2004 19:02

Conservative group slams Induce Act The American Conservative Union (ACU) is running a newspaper and magazine advertisement campaign against the anti-P2P law known as the Induce Act. Companies worry that bill could target products such as Apple Computer's iPod. The ACU holds Republican activists and former senators on its board of directors. "This is the Hollywood liberals trying to crush innovation. What's sad is that they've got Republicans on their side." said ACU deputy director Stacie Rumenap. A vote on the bill is scheduled for Thursday.
The original version of the Induce Act said that anyone who induces any violation of copyright law could be legally responsible. A version circulated by the office of Sen. Orrin Hatch clarifies that a company must engage in "conscious and deliberate affirmative acts" of inducement to be found liable. Technology companies however remain skeptical. "The problem is that it doesn't look like they're willing to preserve the Sony Betamax standard for the cause of action of inducement," said Markham Erickson, associate general counsel for NetCoalition.

A Supreme Court decision in 1984 known as the Betamax ruling said VCRs were legal to sell because they were "capable of substantial noninfringing uses." Technology companies are worried that the targeting of P2P networks could mean that the Induce Act could remove the legal protections that shield other hardware and software makers from legal liability.


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