Nice title, huh? I can imagine you saying to yourself...what the heck is Chris going on about now? Well, this article: From Reuters details some of the stranger organizations that have asked the Supreme Court to come down hard on filesharing networks. Okay, so the NFL... I kinda get why they might not like Kazaa. But the Christian Coalition? Whatever your personal politics, what the heck does piracy/sharing/downloading have to do with this organization?
A close reading of the article reveals much: "Other heavyweights in the entertainment industry's corner include Theodore Olson, who until July represented the government in Supreme Court cases." so Ted Olsen has been chummy with the far right neo-conservative wing of the republican party in the United States for a very long time. So this is likely a 'coalition of the billing' that he brought together in a show of lobbying power.
I can only imagine Ted's invoice that he'll be presenting to the MPAA and the RIAA for building up such a collection of heavyweights. In case you were wondering...yeah...this is something to fear, as God and Football now officially hate peer to peer. I would be surprised should the current court find in freedom's/Kazaa's favor.
I should point out that I do obviously belong to the school of thought that even if Kazaa and its ilk are used for sharing music, that their main technical utility comes from the same utility that makes freenet to powerful tool for freedom that it is.
I really want to craft an analogy here along these lines: Peer to peer file sharing networks should be if anything promoted and supported by the us, because it allows our culture to infiltrate theocratic regimes. Must like the old Voice of America. Our Hollywood propaganda should be wielded as the potent weapon that it is. Instead of spending hundreds of vast billions of dollars on weaponry and human lives, we should use a small fraction of this on making bandwidth insanely cheap, and more importantly, available and unstoppable in countries that would oppress their populace through ignorance.
Picture airdropping c-130s full of wimax cards that can connect to the high flying dirigible ISP :-) Okay, so that's a little fantastic, but it isn't so far off. Believe me this kind of thing would be highly agitative, and, in time, effective. The recent Iranian blocking of Orkut should indicate the amount of fear that Theocratic regimes have of open communications.
Which brings us back to the United States. Do they really fear piracy on these networks or raw, uncensored, communication and knowledge?
I'll leave that as an exercise for the reader, as you know, I don't like to get too political online. Not that you could have told from that last 500 words or so.