File Sharing

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Author?s Note:

This was originally an informative speech and was some portions were edited for time purposes, so some modifications may be required.If you?re using this as a speech, it will be around eight minutes long.

Word Count: 1,054

Introduction

Most people have an idea of what file sharing is, but they?re not exactly sure why it?s such a big deal. Some of them may even be aware of the fact that file sharing is punishable by law and carries a fine of up to and including $20,000. Since the introduction of Napster in 1999, copyrighted music has been illegally duplicated more than eight trillion times. In recent weeks, the Recording Industry Association of America has filed more than three hundred lawsuits against American consumers who illegally downloaded copyrighted music. File sharing has long been a problem for the recording industry, which has only begun an uphill battle to alleviate illegal file sharing. In addition to the lawsuits, the RIAA has employed the use of specialized computer applications in its quest to seek out and hold accountable file sharing users. Naturally, millions of file sharing people are not happy with the RIAA?s recent proceedings and have made the resolve to retain their right to ?free? music. The biggest file-sharing networks have vowed to continue to keep music ?free? while protecting their users from the RIAA?s retribution.

Body
The origins of file sharing
Prior to file sharing, music lovers were forced to pay nearly twenty dollars for an album. Some of them simply accepted the prices and went on to enjoy their favorite music while others chose to purchase recordable audio cassettes in addition to albums and copy an entire album onto one cassette. This copying was just as illegal then as file sharing is now. The only difference between file sharing and copying an album onto a cassette is file sharers run a greater risk of being caught. Federal officers weren?t going to burst through someone?s home because they were copying an album. The crime was nearly impossible for record companies to prove because the RIAA had no way of detecting when and where an album was being copied. That is, until Napster arrived in January of 1999. Napster was originally comprised of a massive network and three hundred servers, which gained instant popularity. By the end of July of 1999, approximately twenty million people had registe...

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