Kazaa users warned of copyright, Prof claims

Kazaa users were warned of potential copyright infringement issues before they used the system, a witness for the record companies conceded on Tuesday.

Professor Leon Sterling, Adacel chair of software innovation and engineering, University of Melbourne, had told the Federal Court in affidavits that Kazaa did not adequately warn users of the potential for copyright infringement.

However, questioned for over an hour by Sharman lawyers, he conceded the warning was clear in two pages in the Kazaa user guide.

Junior counsel for Altnet, Mark Leeming, said the Kazaa user guide asked users several times to "take great care" in choosing files to upload.

The guide said Kazaa was "a great tool to promote your own... content", and was not encouraging piracy, according to Leeming.

He asked Sterling to clarify the affidavit claim that Kazaa users were encouraged to place any files they owned in the "My Shared Folder".

Sterling said he agreed the point was clear in the pages cited by Leeming, but was "not sure that [message] is universally present in the system".

Leeming also attacked Sterling's proposal to filter Kazaa by installing a list of copyright-owned songs in the system.

The Napster case in the US had heard that any list of songs installed in a filter to block unauthorised file sharing would have to number around eight million, according to Leeming.

"That's a lot of metadata," he said.

Sterling's claim that Kazaa could maintain a list of user names was unsubstantiated, according to Leeming.

"Aren't you saying here that Kazaa should be a centralised system?" Leeming said.

Sterling said supernodes, used in the Kazaa system, could maintain such a list as "they're quite stable."

However, Leeming said a study of the system by Professor Keith Ross, chair in computer science at Polytechnic University in New York found the average life of Kazaa supernodes to be less than two and a half hours.

Sharman is expected to continue questioning Sterling when the trial resumes tomorrow.

Court had been adjourned earlier on Tuesday till the afternoon, as Sterling had filed a new affidavit. Sharman had asked the judge for more time so its lawyers could read over the document.

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Steven Deare

PC World
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Skywatcher Dobsonian 8″ Collapsible Telescope

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Whodunnit™ Duo-Scope MFL-007 Microscope Kit

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Logitech Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 2 Bluetooth Speaker

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles


PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Sellers


This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang


It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries


As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr


The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?