Limewire chairman Mark Gorton had a bad day on Tuesday. Gorton appeared in front of the Committee for Oversight and Government Reform to talk about P2P safety and leaks of classified information on file sharing networks. CNet reports that he "was assailed for allegedly harming national security". From the CNet article:

"The most scathing criticism came from Rep. Jim Cooper (D-Tenn.), who launched into a lengthy monologue in which he deemed Gorton 'one of the most naive chairmen and CEOs I've ever run across. (...) Mr. Gorton, you seem to lack imagination about how your product can be deliberately misused by evildoers against this country.'"

Oups. That hurts. Gorton promised to do a better job about educating users and designing Limewire to avoid unwanted sharing of sensitive information.

His prepared statement also offers an interesting twist on the old fingerpointing game. Gorton told the Committee that ISPs should be forced to take a tougher stance against sharing of unlicensed content. From his statement:

"Internet Service Providers, ISPís, are a unique point of control for every computer on the Internet. Universities frequently function as their own ISPís, and a handful of universities have implemented notice based warning systems that result in the disconnection of users engaged in illegal behavior who ignore multiple warnings. These universities have sharply reduced child pornography and copyright infringement on their campus networks. Similar policies could be mandated for all ISPís in the United States. "

Gorton goes on by saying that the US Congress should pass laws to force ISPs to enforce copyright. This sounds like a dangerous idea to suggest - especially in times where politicians and lobbyists are pushing for government-mandated P2P filters on the ISP level. Granted, Gorton only wants ISPs to cut off repeat offenders. Investigating those offenses would likely still be done by rights holders. But he might just end up getting more than he can swallow.

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