[Politech] P2P firms gain unexpected new ally: America's librarians

From: Declan McCullagh (declan@private)
Date: Fri Sep 26 2003 - 06:39:43 PDT

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    Librarians to P2P critics: Shhh!
    Last modified: September 25, 2003, 5:40 PM PDT
    By Declan McCullagh
    In a hotly contested lawsuit before a federal appeals court, two 
    peer-to-peer companies are about to gain a vast army of allies: America's 
    The five major U.S. library associations are planning to file a legal brief 
    Friday siding with Streamcast Networks and Grokster in the California suit, 
    brought by the major record labels and Hollywood studios. The development 
    could complicate the Recording Industry Association of America's efforts to 
    portray file-swapping services as rife with spam and illegal pornography.
    According to an attorney who has seen the document, the brief argues that 
    Streamcast--distributor of the Morpheus software--and Grokster should not 
    be shut down. It asks the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold the April 
    decision by a Los Angeles judge that dismissed much of the entertainment 
    industry's suit against the two peer-to-peer companies.
    Among the groups signing the brief are the American Library Association 
    (ALA), the Association of Research Libraries, the American Association of 
    Law Libraries, the Medical Library Association and the Special Libraries 
    Association. The American Civil Liberties Union, in one of the group's 
    first forays into copyright law, has drafted the brief opposing the Motion 
    Picture Association of America (MPAA) and the Recording Industry 
    Association of America (RIAA).
    [...remainder snipped...]
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