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HEA: Reid Withdraws Anti-File Sharing Amendment

We previously reported that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) planned to introduce a new amendment to the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act requiring a number of universities to police and report uses of illegal file sharing on their campuses. That amendment has now been dropped.

The amendment would have required the Secretary of Education to create an annual report for Congress outlining which 25 Universities have received the most copyright infringement notices. These Universities will then have to come up with and report a plan of action on how stop copyright infringement on their campuses.

Education technology groups and others, such as Educause and the Digital Freedom Campaign, had opposed the amendment.

"This amendment is the just latest in a series of legislative efforts by wealthy record labels to require our tax dollars to be spent on policing college students," said Jennifer Stoltz, a spokesperson for the Digital Freedom Campaign.

"No one supports illegal downloading or file-sharing, but the Digital Freedom Campaign and its members believe that universities have more urgent things to do with their scarce budgets than collect information on their students for the government and for the RIAA. Academic resources would be better spent educating students rather than spying on them at the behest of large corporations."

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About the Author

David Nagel is editorial director of 1105 Media's Education Technology Group and editor-in-chief of THE Journal and STEAM Universe. A 25-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.

He can be reached at [email protected]. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at or follow him on Twitter at @THEJournalDave (K-12) or @CampusTechDave (higher education).

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