Monday, 23 July 2007

Controversial File-Sharing Amendment to Higher Education Act

Debate on the Higher Education Act Amendments of 2007 (S. 1462), which will renew the Higher Education Act, is scheduled to begin today and the Chronicle of Higher Education is reporting that Sen. Harry Reid (D. NV) has added a controversial amendment. His amendment would require many of the largest colleges to use technology designed to prevent students from illegally downloading and swapping music and movie files. The amendment that Sen. Reid is sponsoring, Senate Amendment 2314, requires institutions of higher education to keep careful track of file-sharing, report to the Secy. of Education, and "provide evidence to the Secretary that the institution has developed a plan for implementing a technology-based deterrent to prevent the illegal downloading or peer-to-peer distribution of intellectual property."
Sen. Reid's pages on the U. S. Senate website speak glowingly of his commitment to higher education and the many benefits of the Higher Education Act but make no mention of this particular amendment.

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