Australian Government considering iPod searches

The Australian Government is considering searching iPods at airports for pirated music as part of a secret international treaty.

Under the proposal, customs officials would search iPods or other music devices, and those found with large amounts of pirated music would face fines, and even jail time.

The details of the treaty were not disclosed, but some reports indicate that it is coming from the RIAA in the United States, and if implemented globally could see iPod searches in the United States, Australia, and presumably any other country who signs up.

The million dollar question is how do you identify pirated music? It’s legal in Australia to rip a CD for personal use (ie, for an iPod), so how do you prove, at the airport (Australia doesn’t have any land boundaries) that the music on your iPod was legally purchased if the CD’s are in your home? Are they seriously suggesting that thousands of people should then be forced to prove the legality of their music, every time they travel?

Is it reasonable that the time of customs officials be allocated to searching iPods when serious criminal activity could be slipping by? It’s an administrative nightmare waiting to happen.

Yet another infringement on our rights from an industry hell bent on criminalizing the entire population for its own greed.