Informed P2P User Act to clamp down on filesharing software

1 10 2009

Bipartisanship has been hard to come by in Washington of late. Still, the bipartisan dream has not completely died, as proved yesterday in the House Energy and Commerce committee, which marked up the “Informed P2P User Act” (PDF) and sent it on to the full House for a vote.

The bill, which has wide support on both sides of the aisle, does two simple things. First, it requires P2P software vendors to provide “clear and conspicuous” notice about the files being shared by the software and then obtain user consent for sharing them. Second, it prohibits P2P programs from being exceptionally sneaky; surreptitious installs are forbidden, and the software cannot prevent users from removing it.

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