White Paper Analysis: LimeWire vs. iTunes Lindsay Goodwin Marcy Jasmund Brad Kanwischer Adam Macek September 30, 2005 English 420S Purdue University After reading the white paper and reviewing the content, it was determined that LimeWire vs. iTunes is an extremely well-written paper. In addition, it does a good job of following the guidelines for the white paper genre, correctly addresses the OSDDP audience, draws from reliable sources, and utilizes a clear, continuous, and organized structure. While the authors of this paper created a good final project, there are still areas that can be improved upon. For instance, LimeWire vs. iTunes is an extremely lengthy paper, finishing out at seventeen pages. Many portions of the reading seem unnecessarily arduous. The authors choose to generally skim the topics such as history, legal issues, and usability. Under the “Virus” topic, however, the authors went into great detail about several different viruses. The increased focus on the viruses majorly distracted from the original focus of the paper. By cutting down the discussion of each virus, the paper could be shortened and this area would be much less burdensome. In addition to their proper coverage of topics, the authors chose to use several illustrations. Each illustration had a specific purpose and greatly enhanced the paper. By providing graphic examples of the theories and principles discussed in the paper, the authors allowed the audience (especially those with less subject knowledge) to grasp the big picture. This paper was well-written for the OSDDP audience. The paper was also made more reliable through the authors’ use of sources. The majority of the resources proved to be credible. In fact, several sources seemed to be specifically tailored toward this subject. For example, www.news.com was an excellent source often linking the reader to further web sights on the topic from prestigious universities like Duke and Stanford. While searching the internet for further resources, several of the original sources came up during the search. It was obvious that the researchers took a significant amount of time in locating more reliable sources. Unfortunately, a few of the sources were no longer available or were outdated. These sources included www.boycott-riaa.com, and many sources from as far back as 2001. With the swift and continuous change in technology, it was important to weed out the old sources. Some great replacements include: http://www.betanews.com/article/Study_iTunes_More_Popular_than_P2P/1118158804 http://informationweek.com/story/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=164301322 http://www.macobserver.com/stockwatch/2005/02/22.1.shtml The organization and structure of the white paper was executed in an easy to understand format. The basics and history of P2P file sharing were presented first, before delving knee deep in the technical aspects of the programs. The layout flowed fairly well from one topic to another. In each of the topics though, it was noticed that some of the paragraphs were a too long and hard to follow. Breaking up some of these larger paragraphs to a couple or few shorter ones would make the reading easier for the reader. It may also be more beneficial to switch the order of the two topics “The Cost of File Sharing” and “Functionality and Usability”. This would provide for an even better flow of the content. In addition, a couple of spelling errors were evident throughout the white paper. With the technological advances of spell checking features, this is unacceptable. With the correction of these errors, the voice and style of the white paper becomes a great part of this document. The overall voice of the project provides a lot of technical information that is easy to follow for anyone who is not computer savvy. From reading this white paper, the reader is provided with plenty of information to aid them in their choice for downloading music. Overall, the paper is consistent throughout, but there are a couple instances where different writing styles were evident. This comes into play with some of the computer terminology. Some writers seemed to have more knowledge than others about how computers and P2P sharing really works. As mentioned before, some paragraphs were harder to read than others because they were too long. Perhaps, this was due to multiple authors. Sections of the paper were probably copied and pasted together, causing some writers long paragraph habits to be blended with others short paragraph habits. This white paper is written fairly well. This is a topic that many students can relate to, which makes it a lot easier to understand. Many white papers are on topics that the reader may have no background information about, which makes it difficult to understand. In this white paper, there are diagrams which illustrate how the process of file sharing really works. This is very useful for the reader because they are able to make a visual connection while reading. This can clear up any information that the reader may be confused about. There is a section in which the white paper that discusses spyware and adware, without any identifying or clarifying information. The reader must proceed to deeper parts of the paper in order to find out about spyware and adware. This becomes confusing and the information about adware and spyware can be added a little earlier to help clear any confusing about the programs. Also, the paper does a great job of describing other related programs. The authors list the program in bold and then go into detail about it. This helps the reader because you know exactly what relates to the program. Also, it describes the information regarding LimeWire and iTunes very well. The authors go into great detail about each one and for the most part and keep the information separate between the two which helps the reader keep certain facts with certain programs. Overall, this white paper is very clear with a few small exceptions. The authors did a great job in getting the point across, and they did it in a way where anyone reading it can understand what they are saying. With a few small improvements, this white paper could be outstanding.