Bush admin: RIAA win shows copyright law is 'effective'

President's copyright czar says the record labels' $222,000 win against Minnesota woman shows we have "an effective legal system" that adequately protects intellectual property.

The Bush administration said on Friday that the recording industry's $222,000 courtroom victory shows that the legal system is working against peer-to-peer pirates.

"Cases such as this remind us strong enforcement is a significant part of the effort to eliminate piracy, and that we have an effective legal system in the U.S. that enables rights holders to protect their intellectual property," said Chris Israel, the U.S. Coordinator for International Intellectual Property Enforcement, to CNET News.com.

Chris Israel, U.S. Coordinator for International Intellectual Property Enforcement, in a file photograph

President Bush named Israel, formerly a senior Commerce Department official, to the key copyright post in July 2005. He has an MBA from George Washington University and, before joining the Bush administration, worked for Time Warner's public policy arm.

Israel's comments come a day after the Recording Industry Association of America won a landmark jury verdict in a Minnesota federal court against a woman accused of sharing copyrighted songs on the Kazaa file-trading network.

The Bush administration has adopted a generally expansive view of copyright law, including writing trade deals that include anti-circumvention restrictions. In 2005, the president signed into law the Family Entertainment and Copyright Act, which slaps some file-sharers with additional penalties.

Israel also said: "Piracy impacts many of our most innovative industries, costs American jobs and is a huge threat to our economic competitiveness."

About the author

Declan McCullagh is the chief political correspondent for CNET. You can e-mail him or follow him on Twitter as declanm. Declan previously was a reporter for Time and the Washington bureau chief for Wired and wrote the Taking Liberties section and Other People's Money column for CBS News' Web site.


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