Sen. Orrin Hatch advocates destroying PCs of file swappers.

If you swap illegal files via the Internet then Senator Hatch thinks there should be a way to destroy your PC for violating copyright law.

Hatch Takes Aim at Illegal Downloading (

During a discussion on methods to frustrate computer users who illegally exchange music and movie files over the Internet, Hatch asked technology executives about ways to damage computers involved in such file trading. Legal experts have said any such attack would violate federal anti-hacking laws.

“No one is interested in destroying anyone’s computer,” replied Randy Saaf of MediaDefender Inc., a secretive Los Angeles company that builds technology to disrupt music downloads. One technique deliberately downloads pirated material very slowly so other users can’t.

“I’m interested,” Hatch interrupted. He said damaging someone’s computer “may be the only way you can teach somebody about copyrights.”

The senator acknowledged Congress would have to enact an exemption for copyright owners from liability for damaging computers. He endorsed technology that would twice warn a computer user about illegal online behavior, “then destroy their computer.”

“If we can find some way to do this without destroying their machines, we’d be interested in hearing about that,” Hatch said. “If that’s the only way, then I’m all for destroying their machines. If you have a few hundred thousand of those, I think people would realize” the seriousness of their actions, he said.

“There’s no excuse for anyone violating copyright laws,” Hatch said.

While I agree with the fact that things are getting out of control in terms of the rampant amount of illegitimate files being pushed around the Net, I don’t think actively destroying the PCs of people suspected of engaging in such activity is the proper way to solve the problem. Using that logic we may as well pass legislation making it a requirement that violating the speed limit causes your car to fall apart. After a couple thousand people slide face first across the highway the message will get around, don’t you think? After all, there’s never any good excuse for speeding yet millions do it every day.

I had a much longer entry about this issue written up that a random accidental button press on my keyboard somehow managed to wipe out in one fell swoop and I don’t have time right now to recreate it. Instead, I’ll chalk it up to being so well-reasoned and sensible that Sen. Hatch had it remotely destroyed before I could release it to the world and take comfort in that delusion.

6 thoughts on “Sen. Orrin Hatch advocates destroying PCs of file swappers.

  1. I say we should just follow his dumbass around and wait for him to run a red light, then smash his car! Better yet, I wonder if he has ever visited a prostitute? Think about that one!

  2. Orrin Hatch has to be, without a doubt, one of the incompetent members of the human race, let alone Congress. If they do start destroying computers wouldn’t that be considered, symbolically speaking, an act of war? The users will definitely fight back and more and more people will consider other means to get their music. Here’s something of interest, when Napster was still around, the recording industry reported record sales. After the RIAA destroyed Napster, sales fell. Coincidence? The RIAA seems to think so. I, and many others, think not.

  3. How come the good senator has dreamed up such a drastic measure against copyright infringment, but has not suggested such a securtiy measure to be taken against people who download child pornography? Are the senators royalties more important than the welfare of our children? Or does the senator merely not want to have his own computer harmed?

  4. Where’s the profit in saving children? Can they contribute to his re-election campaign?

  5. I kind of doubt he is into the child porn or prostute thing but he is definitely a poor excuse for a human being. He has very little moral fiber. I think that if faced with the choice of saving a child from drowning and helping a corperation make money, he would help the corperation any day.

    He is such a dirtbag.

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