Monday, December 31, 2007

The beatings will continue until morale improves...

From a Washington Post article:

"...the industry (RIAA) maintains that it is illegal for someone who has legally purchased a CD to transfer that music into his computer."

The Recording Industry Association of America continues to persecute and prosecute. While their efforts to fight international piracy are worthwhile and to be applauded, their domestic strategy of attacking consumers with outrageous lawsuits couldn't be more misguided. With CD sales tanking and the economy of the music industry at an all-time low, they continue to rearrange the deck chairs and throw the passengers overboard. This will only drive listeners away from high-quality music formats. It is bad for music, bad for artists, bad for listeners, and bad for business.

This RIAA faq page for "students doing reports" does have some interesting things to say and represents their viewpoint on all of this. Some of it is good, some of it is bad.

This is the same organization that tried to squash the home-based recording studio movement that was born back in the 1980's. They wanted to make it illegal for individual artists to produce music for profit from a project studio in a residential setting and they brought lawsuits on several home studio owners. Happily, with very limited success.

The RIAA is not really in the business of promoting art, though, in spite of their altruistic statements. Their real functon is to protect the monopolistic business interests of what remains of the dinosaur that used to be the American record industry.

We need a new paradigm. And it's coming.

1 comment:

DaveG said...

Well, that tears it. I've been copying my vast library of CDs onto USB memory sticks because they can go for hours longer without having to be changed, and the 'random' feature of my little JVC office stereo keeps things fresh. But if this copying of legally purchased CDs for personal use is a crime, I figure I might as well adopt an 'in for a penny, in for a pound' mentality and start copying library CDs.

Thanks, RIAA, you've started me down the road to crime. Sure, it starts with the accidental crime of personal use of purchased items, but now that I'm a criminal, who knows where it will end?? Next thing you know, I'm going to be sharing descriptions of major league football games with co-workers at the water cooler without the express, written consent of the NFL. Before you know it, I'm gonna be knocking over liquor stores on the way home from work and illicitly removing mattress tags once I get there!

And all because I wanted to mix my Steely Dan and Sade. Who woulda thunk it?