The new US 'Save the iPod campaign' has generated 10,000 faxes to the US Congress in just ten days.

The grassroots campaign aims to draw attention to a new bill currently passing through that house, the 'Induce Act'. Read literally, this act could enable copyright owners to force Apple and others to cease manufacturing iPods or other music players, and applies draconian measures against companies producing software or hardware that could conceivably be used to break the rights of copyright holders.

Campaign organiser Holmes Wilson said: "Apple's iPod is just one of countless products and services that are threatened if the act passes".

The campaign Web site lets visitors send faxes to their Representatives in the Congress.

Founder of the non-profit, grassroots Click the Vote organization John Parres said: "Certainly creators deserve rewards when we play or copy their songs and recordings, but the Induce Act marks a radical shift in public policy. For the first time in American history creators will be able to effectively block new scientific innovations."

Legal experts predict that if the act is passed, entertainment companies will effectively require hardware and software manufacturers to either build restrictions into their products or remove them from the market altogether. Companies and people that don't comply could be sued for "inducing infringement" under the proposed law, the campaigners claim.

The act could also make CD burners illegal as well as any software that touches an MP3 file or any consumer electronic device that plays a song or movie. "Search engines like Google and Yahoo could be eviscerated", campaigners said.

Holmes Wilson observed: "Americans will soon realize that the act will make felons of every American for something as simple and everyday as transferring music onto our iPods or wireless car stereos."