Print 98 comment(s) - last by kotix.. on Nov 14 at 1:09 PM

Universities that don't, or won't, comply with copyright takedowns could risk losing government funding

The College Opportunity and Affordability Act (PDF) is a monster of a document, weighing in at 747 pages. The bill aims to amend the Higher Education Act of 1965, and buried deep inside is a nasty secret sponsored by the entertainment industry: universities would be required to help fight piracy or risk the loss of federal funding.

One section of COAA would force universities to publicly disclose their policies and procedures relating to copyright enforcement, and to develop plans for exploring “technology-based deterrents” and alternatives -- like Napster or the ad-supported Ruckus service. These requirements would be backed up with federal grant money, which would be authorized for the purchase and implementation of whatever programs a university may try to implement.

Another section of the bill is more familiar, as it bears a striking similarity to some additions attempted in the Higher Education Amendments of 2007. Under the new text, universities would be required to annually inform students of the “civil and criminal liabilities” of file sharing, provide a summary of the consequences for violating copyright laws, and provide a description of the university’s disciplinary policies if they’re caught.

Universities would also be required to tell students about the various countermeasures they may use to “prevent and detect” unauthorized file sharing.

University officials have been understandably alarmed, as the above provisions would put a potential $100 billion each year in federal aid at risk; failure to comply would cause the school to lose all of its financial aid for students, affecting even those students who don’t own a personal computer.

In a letter written on Wednesday and signed by the presidents of Stanford University and Penn State, and the chancellor of the University of Maryland system, university officials wrote:

Such an extraordinarily inappropriate and punitive outcome would result in all students on that campus losing their federal financial aid--including Pell grants and student loans that are essential to their ability to attend college, advance their education, and acquire the skills necessary to compete in the 21st-century economy … lower-income students, those most in need of federal financial aid, would be harmed most under the entertainment industry's proposal.

Officials also noted that while the higher education systems does indeed recognize the “seriousness of the problem of illegal peer-to-peer file sharing,” it noted that schools and universities represented only a “small fraction” of the overall P2P ecosystem.

University leadership is overreacting, said the MPAA, and noted that schools that actively implement P2P counter-measures see far fewer copyright complaints — sometimes as little as zero per month.

Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

RE: I love deceptive legislation names
By Ringold on 11/12/2007 7:57:46 PM , Rating: 1
I like how my post hit -1 at warp speed, but asides from two asians voicing an opinion roundly rejected by other people as being out of the ordinary, not a single post as to where I went off track.

I looked at several links, but this one fits best; note somewhere between page 20 and 30 the mention that as the required average SAT score for admission goes up, the reliance on racial consideration goes up as well. Also, looks like roughly 40% of universities still discriminate based upon race -- and I don't mean against minorities.

All the other links were primarily legal scholars or activists pointing out that affirmitive action is state sanctioned racism and, beyond being unconstitutional, is divisive.

The economics I wont go further to defend; if throwing money being inflationary doesn't make sense to someone then it's beyond my ability to help. Likewise, if one thinks college shouldn't be a meritocracy, then we would simply be so far apart in ideology as to not possibly be able to find a middle ground.

RE: I love deceptive legislation names
By bobbronco on 11/12/2007 9:10:24 PM , Rating: 3
if throwing money being inflationary doesn't make sense to someone then it's beyond my ability to help.

Actually, government subsidies primarily at the state level are largely responsible for keeping tuition at many public universities in check. -Don't belive me? Look up the details behind nearly every state budget. So, quite the opposite to your point could be argued as well.

By Ringold on 11/13/2007 12:39:54 PM , Rating: 2
My quote you selected was directed dead-center at student loan subsidies, pell grants, and so forth; student aid, an indirect funding of colleges. There's a reason every student probably every year fills out FAFSA -- and what does the second F stand for? Yep. Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

That said, yes, I'm aware of states heavily funding colleges. I never said otherwise. In fact, the source of the free money from which ever level of government doesn't particularly matter to my argument; inflationary pressure is inflationary pressure.

By Adonlude on 11/14/2007 1:09:06 PM , Rating: 2
It is disgusting that we still practice affirmative action in this country. How can anyone take racism/discrimintation, rename it to "affirmative action" and act like it is a good kind of racism/discrimination?

"Well, there may be a reason why they call them 'Mac' trucks! Windows machines will not be trucks." -- Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer
Related Articles

Copyright 2015 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki