NBC: Peer-to-peer costs corn farmers money

Posted on September 20, 2007 

NBC: Peer-to-peer costs corn farmers money

NBC wants the federal government to believe that peer-to-peer file-swapping hurts… corn farmers? That’s one of the claims made in NBC’s controversial FCC filing, which also asks the government to require that Internet providers use mandatory content filters. “In the absence of movie piracy, video retailers would sell and rent more titles,” says the filing. “Movie theaters would sell more tickets and popcorn. Corn growers would earn greater profits and buy more farm equipment.” Everyone wins!

The claim that content filtering can boost the revenue of corn farmers (which is already, thanks to ethanol, higher than the average American income) gets a footnote of its own in the new filing: “One could as easily argue,” write the authors, “that the money consumers saved by not buying movie tickets they instead use to eat out in restaurants, thus helping farmers, restaurant owners, the automobile industry, and parking valets.”

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