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Copying Isn't 'Sharing'

August 12, 2003

Michael Helwig's Aug. 10 letter [responding to The Times' Aug. 4 editorial] tries to equate what he calls "Internet song sharing" with lending his chain saw to a friend and claims that there is no difference.

Helwig actually mentions a huge difference: He makes a copy of the song to give to a friend. He doesn't make a copy of the chain saw.

Perhaps we should avoid the term "sharing" for the practice of file copying (what was honestly called "bootlegging" with earlier recording media).

According to Helwig, sharing a CD involves a loan, not the manufacture of an illicit copy. I would have relished that concept as a child, when I had to share cake with my brothers. I, too, would prefer to eat my cake and still have it.

David Suess

Hermosa Beach

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