[FekLar]'s MP3 Page

Ptaak: To learn the basics of using mIRC to download files from IRC (internet realy chat), click here: How To Use IRC Channels.

Unfortunately, the IRC channels have become severely polluted with damaged files lately. Click here to find the cause and the solution: [FekLar]'s MP3 Clipping Tutorial, (how good tunez become bad files).

For some minor modifications to SpR Jukebox script to enhance its capabilties and responsiveness, click here: [FekLar]'s SpR Script Enhancements

Be sure to try [FekLar]'s downloads and links page

Notice: if you were redirected to this site from the page, and you get any '404 page not found' errors when clicking a local link here, it means my server went down, crashed, or was eaten by aliens. If this happens, click your browser's back button a few times to get back to the redirector page, and click the link to go over to the mirror site.

Napster is illegal? [FekLar] says Napster is legal

Will IRC be closed down like Napster was? No. Napster made a profit on the activities of their users, when they knew that some of the activities were illegal. IRC doesn't make a profit, and is provided mainly as a public service, like internet news. While some illegal activities go on and have been known to go on on IRC, the operators have made efforts to curtail the obviously illegal activities.

Read the Why some mp3s are legal page, and you will see that much of the mp3 trading that goes on in IRC (that went on in Napster) is actually legal. If the government were to shut IRC down, the legal precedent that would be set would force the entire internet to be closed down. Both legal and illegal activities go on on the internet in general. Should it be shut down because some of the activity is illegal? No. If someone has a legitmate beef, then it should be investigated perhaps, but the legitimate uses of the internet, based on freedom of speech, have to continue. Or so has said the Supreme Court. Rather than risk freedom of speech being abrogated, the Supreme Court found the laws against the export of encyrption software unconstitutional, risking national security in favor of guaranteeing freedom of speech.

The fact is, Napster made money directly and knowingly from the illegal activities of some of its users, whereas IRC doesn't. Because Napster was making this money, and because it had the capability and resources to investigate the alleged illegal uses, it had the legal responsibility to use that capability, but Napster did not. IRC does not make a profit as a direct result of it's users' activities, and so cannot be held to the same standard of legal accountability as Napster had been. Most IRC server owners provide the network as a public service, run the network at a loss, and write the losses off their taxes. Napster only had two uses, legal and illegal trading of mp3s. IRC has hundreds of different uses. The only likely result of significantly higher numbers of IRC users trading their mp3s is potential investigation of some file servers who obviously have far more files than they would normally be expected to possess at their age (one file server who has 25,000 files comes to mind), and possibly investigations of IP addresses of users who download vast amounts of newly or recently released music.

The effect of the former is that most big servers will realize the need to cut down the size of their file lists or offerings, and the effect of the latter, most likely, is a few fewer file servers and a few more FTP servers. Legally, there must exist a basis for a search warrant, and this is not easy to come by (of course, the file server with 25,000 files comes to mind again, but that is rare). The material presented on the Why some mp3s are legal page proves that there are a large number of mp3 owners and traders that are completely legal and legitimate, so it cannot be automatically assumed that either a leech or a server is conducting an illegal activity.

Napster itself had the legal responsibility to investigate, but IRC does not. Any investigation would have to be undertaken by the government, and there must exist a strong basis for suspicion in order for a warrant to issue. Simply offering or downloading mp3s is not enough of a legal basis, because it can be (and has been) proven that this activity can also be done legally.

In all fairness, the case against Napster was weak, and Napster only lost because of their own ignorance. Had Napster presented the material presented on the Why some mp3s are legal page, the courtroom results may well have turned out differently.

As it was, Napster failed to establish that there are many cases where ownership or copying or trading (backing up) of mp3s is legal, when in fact it can be established. Had Napster done this, it can easily be demonstrated that based on these facts, a user or server simply being known or seen to offer, trade, or download mp3 files is not enough legal basis for a warrant to issue, since it is equally likely that such activities are perfectly legal.

In order for a warrant to issue, there must exist at least some conclusive evidence or indication of illegal activity. To rule otherwise would set a legal precedent that would throw out the U.S. Constitution, and you could be stopped and searched, or your business and property searched, at any time and for any reason, simply because the possibility realistically exists that you could be committing some crime. .001 percent of the population are rapists and child molesters and chlld pornographers. Therefore, it is possible that you are a rapist, child molester, or child pornographer. The ratio is unimportant and arbitrary. Perhaps the government would wake you up some night, take your kids away, and test your DNA, maybe because you mildly pissed somebody in the government off. Maybe we can establish an American version of the Gestapo. Luckily, although the Supreme Court has interpreted the Constitution widely at times, sometimes in seemingly obvious opposition to the will of the framers, the Supreme Court has never outright thrown out the US Constitution.

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