Ohio University bans P2P clients.

Ohio University has banned Peer-to-Peer clients from the campus network.

 Their rationale:

“Although P2P file-sharing can sometimes be used for legitimate reasons, any use of P2P software on the campus network may result in Internet access being disabled under this new policy. Individuals who need to use P2P software for legitimate purposes can discuss their needs with the IT Service Desk.

In addition to consuming bandwidth and technological resources, P2P file-sharing also exposes the university network to viruses, spyware and other attacks. It also is frequently used for illegally distributing copyrighted works.

Today’s announcement follows the recent crackdown by the Recording Industry Association of America on illegal music downloading. The RIAA sent more than 1,200 prelitigation letters to colleges and universities, including 100 to Ohio University. It also initiated “John Doe” lawsuits against users of computers on Ohio University’s network. The university estimates staff members have spent nearly 120 hours dealing with the prelitigation letters from the RIAA.”

3 points:

1. “Although P2P file-sharing can sometimes be used for legitimate reasons…” – the same can be said for and against email/web browsing/ftp/newsgroups/etc.

2. “…exposes the university network to viruses, spyware and other attacks.” – surely the answer then is to disconnect from the Internet.

3. “It (the RIAA) also initiated “John Doe” lawsuits against users of computers on Ohio University’s network.” – by following this logic, the RIAA should just initiate a class-action lawsuit against the people of the United States and then declare victory in the war against file-sharing.

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