I just read an article in ITworld titled “P2P bill could regulate browsers, cloud computing” by Grant Gross that got my brain churning a bit. Is Peer-to-Peer really considered “Cloud Computing?” And, if it is, how would it be classified? Cloud Application? No. Cloud Platform? Nope. Cloud Infrastructure? Uh…No.
After reading the P2P Bill, what concerns me is the extremely broad and loose definition of a “peer-to-peer sharing program”. H.R. 1319 (otherwise known as the “Informed P2P User Act”) does not seem to clearly define this term. (You can view the full text of the Bill here.) The definition of a “peer-to-peer file sharing program” is defined within the Bill as proposed as:
(2) the term ‘peer-to-peer file sharing program’ means computer software that allows the computer on which such software is installed–
(A) to designate files available for transmission to another computer;
(B) to transmit files directly to another computer; and
(C) to request the transmission of files from another computer.
In a response delivered to Representative Bono Mack, the sponsor of H.R. 1319, the CCIA (Computer & Communication Industry Association), the NetCoalition, TechAmerica and the Internet Commerce Coalition stated:
“As currently drafted, however, H.R. 1319 would broadly apply to many different applications and Web sites that appear to be beyond the intended scope of the bill.