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On P2P Developer Trial (Dec. 2006)

On "Winny" P2P software developer trial judgement
Immediate Release

Comment on Copyright violation assistance case 
 Shinji R. Yamane, CPSR/Japan president 
 December 17, 2006
 version 1.1

 Mr. Isamu Kaneko was the first file-sharing software developer arrested in
Japan. He developed and posted Winny, quasi-anonymous P2P file-sharing
software(*) still runnung on more than 400,000 nodes today.
 He was claimed to 'assisted' two users who illegally uploaded
copyrighted materials using Winny. 
 As soon as Mr. Kaneko arrested, starts supporting activity
CPSR Japan chapter (CPSR/Japan) has been supported
and its successor, Lesgue for Software Engineers (LSE).

The judgement passed down on him was guilty.  As the ruling statement
will be published some days later after the judgement in Japanese
criminal court and no recordings allowed, nobody has the ruling
statement yet. So some commentators in news/blog talks uncertain

 According to the ruling, Mr. Kaneko has no willing to support
copyright violation and Winny is "significant" technology that can be
applied to various uses and characterized "value-neutral."
However, it became guilty by expanding the concept of "assist" in 
criminal law and Mr. Kaneko fined 1.5 million yen.

[Future concerns]
 As the court recognized that Mr. Kaneko is NOT malicious developer,
Winny ruling shocks Japanese industry including hobbist programmers.
The border of guilty and innocent software developer is not clear.

 CPSR/Japan will also support and co-operate Mr. Kaneko and LSE.
CPSR/Japan will held a chapter's conference in Tokyo to discuss the
effect of Winny ruling on January 13 Saturday 2007.


* Research paper on Winny network contents is available in English:
 Tatsuo Tanaka
 Does file sharing reduce music CD sales?: A case of Japan
 Hitotsubashi University IIR WP#05-08 (2004/12/13)

Comment by Isamu Kaneko
 December 13, 2006
 (Originally in Japanese, available at )

Today, I have been found guilty as an accessory to copyright violation.
Winny's usefullness is somthing that will extend into the future.
Therefore, I believe that it's true value will be recognized in the
future. I am dissapointed with the present ruling.

I have repeatedly warned, "do not exchange illegal files" when releasing
Winny.  And I have repeatedly warned against illegal file exchanges in my
commnets to 2-channel and other forums.  I am not sure what more would
be needed to further make my case.

My biggest concern about this ruling is the chilling effect that many
software developers may shy away from developing useful technologies,
fearing prosecution based on this vague possiblity of becoming an
accessory. This saddens me the most. Times are changing, and we need to
cope with that.

I am going to appeal this ruling, in order to raise awareness on the
role of technology in these times.


Created by syamane
Last modified December 17, 2006 02:16 AM

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