Is P2P legal?

Are you confused about P2P and file sharing networks? If so, you are not alone. The main reason for the confusion is that many people are saying that file sharing networks are illegal while others are sayihg that they are legal. Also, the file sharing services themselves don't always disclose all the risks involved with the use of their services because they want more people to sign-up.

The truth is that file sharing networks themselves are legal in the U.S. but they can be used illegally. Judges have ruled that even though file sharing networks can be used for illegal purposes, the services themselves are not illegal. It is easily possible for illegal or copyrighted files to be shared on the network and because of the huge number of connected computers and files being shared, it is nearly impossible for the file sharing service to prevent abuse.

You don't have to be a bad person to use a file sharing service illegally. Since there is such a huge selection of files (in the billions) on the P2P network and no way to completely control what people put on the network, there is no way for the P2P service to tell you if the file you are downloading is copyrighted or illegal. Therefore, you can easily download an illegal file without realizing it.

What has also happened is that since the file sharing networks are themselves considered legal, the RIAA (Recording Industry Association Of America) has decided to sue the people that share illegal or copyrighted files instead of the services that provide access to the networks. Therefore, even though you may not intentionally download illegal files, you can still be targeted by the RIAA and be sued if you download and share copyrighted material because you will be breaking copyright infringement laws.


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