Internet2 is the source for many students at other colleges and universities to illegally download music files. However, 405 of those students are now facing serious lawsuits from the Recording Industry Association of America.
Even though CSU was not a university involved in the lawsuits, it does operate on the Internet2 network. Anyone using a CSU computer for the Internet in the residence halls or at computer labs is utilizing the Internet2 server. Access to Internet2 is favorable to CSU students because the network runs on very high speeds.
"The Internet2 network was designed to bypass some of the bottlenecks of the public network," said Pete Seel, associate professor of technical journalism. "One hundred thirty universities are linked through this network's backbone."
Patrick Burns, associate vice president for information and instructional technology at Academic Computing and Networking Services, said that is why this particular network is so favorable for file sharing.
"The files come across fast and error-free," Burns said.
It is possible for on-campus users to download music on the Internet2 network, but some policing efforts are being made, Burns said. Students are able to import file on their own computer, but they are not able to export files to other networks.
"We put a packet filtering device between CSU and other networks to make it difficult for CSU students to send out files to other networks," Burns said. "We really just put the restrictions there to protect students from lawsuits."
Burns said that although the process of exporting files is difficult because of technological restrictions, it is not impossible.
When the lawsuits originally surfaced last week, RIAA President Cary Sherman suggested that a new fee be created for each student, allowing students to download music legally. Seel said some universities have already implemented such fees.
"I don't think it will work," said Kellene Wells, sophomore psychology major. "It won't stop illegal downloading, and no matter how much money they put into legal downloading, they can't cover that much downloading."
However, Burns said that ACNS and Housing and Dining Services are working together to provide information to stop file sharing. He also believes CSU students know the consequences of illegal file sharing and will choose to avoid it.
"CSU students are right-minded and generally do the right thing," Burns said.