I thought I had posted this some time ago...Unfortunately it looks like my mind forgot to tell the rest of my body to actually 'post' this.
There is a movement to tie together copyright enforcement with federal education monies. The US House has their version, HR 4137. But the backlash is less on the state level. Therefore, you can now see similar legislation at the state level (Illinois).
The purpose of the legislation is to fight copyright infringement, as both the attached bills explain. If a university/college receives a certain number of copyright notices, they would be obligated to fight copyright infringement and/or install technological measures to protect copyrights. However, there is/are provisions for technological solutions to analyze the data traffic in an effort to determine if data transiting the network is copyrighted. Now I am not positive on the particulars of the technology, but it would require the network to look into the data packets and view the 'real' data. For the postal analogy, the postal carrier would now be authorised to open and read your post to your grandmother. Not surprisingly the backlash is relatively low at the state level as it is almost being sneaked in the 'back door'.
Now, we have had reports of a large increase in the number of DMCA Copyright notices...One can only wonder if there is a link between the increase in RIAA notices and the pending legislation. Maybe it is a way to perhaps show there is a quantifiable need for universities/colleges to do the work of the recording industry. As dollars for education are continuing to dwindle from the federal and state governments, this amounts to nothing more than "passing the buck" of copyright protection to cash strapped educational institutions.
2 hours ago