August 11, 2004 | By Jason Schultz

No, Mr. Gore, I Expect the Internet to Die.

On August 5, 2004, 40 State Attorneys General wrote an open letter to P2P United, an industry group that represents many of the major peer-to-peer software vendors, such as Grokster, Morpheus, and eDonkey. In the letter, the AGs accuse the companies and their technology of illegal and unethical practices -- specifically, of contributing to the dissemination of child pornography, copyright infringement, spyware, and viruses.

The AGs' letter is an exercise in pure propaganda, parroting the RIAA's efforts to link P2P to every social ill imaginable. After all, when it comes to porn, viruses, and security risks, Microsoft's Internet Explorer, Outlook, and Windows XP represent a far more serious threat than all P2P apps combined. In fact, all one has to do is replace "P2P" in the letter with "The Internet", "email," or "the Web" and the arguments remain the same. So just for fun, we went ahead and rewrote it; only this time, we went straight to the top and addressed it to the true villain who knowingly imposed all of these evils upon us: Al Gore, father of the Internet.


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