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Roger Clarke's 'P2P Strategic and Policy Implications'

P2P Technology's Strategic and Policy Implications

Roger Clarke **

Abstract of 1 August 2005, rev. 8 September 2005

Prepared for an address in ECom-IComp Experts Address Series at the University of Hong Kong, September 2005

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Conventional client-server architecture has a number of technical deficiencies. In the new context of vast numbers of widely-dispersed, powerful and well-connected devices, an alternative architecture has emerged, which overcomes many of the weaknesses of client-server.

Although it has many potential applications, peer-to-peer (P2P) architecture has been much-used as a means of reticulating audio and video files. A great deal of the copying has been in breach of the ever-increasing basket of rights that make up copyright. That has caused consternation among copyright-owning corporations. Their industry associations, RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) and MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America) have successfully lobbied for extensions to copyright law, and music publishers in particular have initiated legal action against promoters of P2P schemes and, in the U.S., consumers as well.

This presentation commences with a brief overview of P2P architecture, its features, and its applications. Further detail is provided in 'Peer-to-Peer (P2P) - An Overview' (November 2004), 'Towards a P2P Research Agenda' (April 2005), and a set of PowerPoint slides (September 2005).

The primary purpose of the presentation is to review the reactions by copyright-owning corporations to the explosion of P2P, and suggest more constructive ways in which they can adapt to this disruptive, but very promising, technology.

Author Affiliations

Roger Clarke is Principal of Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd, Canberra. He is also a Visiting Professor in the E-Commerce Programme at the University of Hong Kong, a Visiting Professor in the Baker & McKenzie Cyberspace Law & Policy Centre at the University of N.S.W., and a Visiting Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the Australian National University.

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The content and infrastructure for these community service pages are provided by Roger Clarke through his consultancy company, Xamax.

From the site's beginnings in August 1994 until February 2009, the infrastructure was provided by the Australian National University. During that time, the site accumulated close to 30 million hits. It passed 65 million in early 2021.

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Created: 6 July 2005 - Last Amended: 8 September 2005 by Roger Clarke - Site Last Verified: 15 February 2009
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