“Apple’s sleek digital audio device is one of the most successful tech toys, selling more than 3 million units since November 2001,” Jefferson Graham reports for USA Today. “But its future, with that of other new tech gadgets, could be in trouble if a controversial congressional bill passes. That’s according to opponents of the Inducing Infringement of Copyrights Act in the Senate. It would make operators of media-swap networks such as Kazaa and Grokster liable for users’ actions. It also would make it easier for entertainment companies to sue tech firms for copyright infringement.”
“Opponents say the language is so broad it could apply to makers of MP3 players, such as iPod, and CD and DVD recorders, as well as to media organizations that give consumers tips on using digital content,” Graham reports.
“Current laws suggest fines of $750 to $150,000 per song. Apple’s top iPod holds 10,000 songs,” Graham reports. “‘At $150,000 per song, that would make Apple potentially liable for $1.5 billion per iPod,’ says Jason Schultz, an attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation. ‘That’s the worst-case scenario. Even at $750 per song, a loss would completely bankrupt a company.'”
Full article here.