Ebenezer Scrooge must be alive and well ... and running the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). For only a bitter, cold-hearted, money-grubbing old man like Scrooge could think that financially hurting a working single mother with a 12-year-old daughter is a good idea.

Presently, the entertainment industry is being transformed by a new distribution system : peer-to-peer (p2p) networking. Currently demonized by the RIAA, p2p is the future of entertainment. For example, it will eventually enable us to watch television programs when we want to watch them and not when a middleman (i.e., TV network) says we can.

The only thing the RIAA`s lawsuits will do is force the next evolutionary step of p2p programs: user anonymity. And if Congress outlaws U.S. companies from developing this, it will have foolishly turned over the entire p2p industry to foreign companies who will.

What the entertainment industry needs to do is find a new business model that will enable them to profit from p2p. I have proposed one in a recent white paper (http://www.nonesuch.org/p2prevolution.pdf). It might not be "the" solution, but it definitely points in the right direction. Financially crippling working single mothers of 12-year-old girls doesn`t.

Scott Jensen
Madison, Wisconsin

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