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Watch out for the RIAA!!!

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by mark beem, Jun 25, 2003.

  1. mark beem

    mark beem I'm alive and well. Where am I? Gold Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2001
    Alabama, USA
  2. If a recording artist wants his or her material to be available to internet users that is one thing. If on the other hand, the recording artist does not want that to happen, that's another thing.

    The idea of copyright is close to the idea of a patent. In each case, the protection of one's ideas from theft is an inducement to create those ideas in the first place, especially in cases where financial reward is concerned.

    The leaders at the Consitutional Convention recognized that the protection of ideas would lead to a positive and healthy environment for those ideas to be created. They felt it was so important that they wrote those protections into the US Constitution.

    The United States Constitution says:

    The Congress shall have the power. . . To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries. . .

    History has shown what a smart thing that was to do. It provided a monetary inducement for the creation of ideas in the market place.

    In fact, I would suggest to you that one of the hallmarks of the free enterprize system is the protection of those intellectual rights.

    As much as some of us would like to believe that music can be created for free, human nature is not that altruistic. As a performer, would you rather play for free and have people applaud, or would you rather play for money?????

    Take away that protection for the creation of ideas, and a BIG inducement to create those ideas disappears.
  3. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    Yes, of course I'd rather play for money.

    But if I found out that a few kids snuck into the show for free, I wouldn't go chasing after them with the intention of stealing their wallets.
  4. john turner

    john turner You don't want to do that. Trust me. Staff Member

    Mar 14, 2000
    atlanta ga
    what he said.
  5. Ok, but what if that performance was your livelihood. At what point would you not accept gate crashers if the rent was due and there was no food on the table?

    Of course, you as the performer are saying that it is ok if a few kids sneak in. It is YOUR choice to be ok with that, as opposed to it not being your choice if people are stealing your intellectual rights.

    As per my example above, you would fall into the column of the artist who is ok with folks downloading on the internet. That is YOUR choice.
  6. Please note, I am in no way advocating piracy. I am merely bringing up some points that I am not seeing covered...

    That "for a limited time" part is important, too. If you have been following what has been happening, that has been extended from the 17 years originally granted to "lifetime of author plus 99 years" recently. Things going into the Public Domain also have value to the people, and is there for a reason. The RIAA and MPAA (with much of it driven by Disney) have been getting extentions enacted that will eliminate the Public Domain.

    Also, the RIAA is trying to play both sides of the fence to their advantage. They claim you bought a license to listen to the music on the media you bought, which should cover you transfering it to other media of convenience for your own listening (not talking about putting mp3 files on Kazaa here). This should also mean that they should be willing to replace the media at cost, since you already paid for your license to listen to that music. But they will accuse you of piracy for putting music from your CD into your portable mp3 player, and will tell you to buy another copy of the CD (or tape or whatever media you bought) at the store (what happened to the license I already paid for?) if something happens to the first (or second or third...). As someone who has just shy of a thousand CDs (I started in 1984), many of which are second or third versions of the album in question (vinyl, cassettes, 8 tracks...) this is an issue to me. All of my CDs have been well cared for, but many are becoming unreadable as the layers separate or the old ink eats through (CDs have a shorter lifespan than originally predicted, especially the older ones with bad glues and acidic inks). As my CDs are dying, I am not replacing them as they tell me to just buy another copy at full price.

    I am all for artists being paid, both for recordings and live shows. I also recognize the value of fair use to the consumer, and of the Public Domain to the public. Copyright protection as an incentive to create is good, but perpetual copyright is not and that is where we are headed.

    (edited a couple typos...)
  7. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    Good point, but I hardly think that the "rent is due" for the recording industry. Their profits are being hurt (many of which they get from ripping us off anyway) but I don't think the RIAA is going to die from this.

    I am not advocating the free downloading of music, but I do think that the RIAA could be making more of an effort to evolve, rather than trying to win a war they'll never win IMHO.

    EDIT: Also, what about people outside America? Will the RIAA go after them too?

    Don't get me wrong, I think they do have to do something, but seems to me like this slope is getting pretty slippery...
  8. thrash_jazz wrote

    The RIAA represents literally tens of thousands of folks - most of whom do not want to see their intellectual property rights ripped off. While the industry as a whole is quite well off, I can assure you that there are many, many, many individuals who the RIAA represents who are not financially secure i.e. songwriters, publishers, and performers whose livelihood depends on royalities. These folks have no recourse to protect their intellectual property rights unless the RIAA speaks for them. They cannot possibly police the marketplace on an individual basis.

    If you want to go down a slippery slope, then let us walk down the one in which there is NO protection for intellectual property rights because you can get ripped off on a whim. While many people do not create for pure monetary reasons alone, it is quite evident that free enterprize cannot work without protections. In such a case, people still create...but those creations are not shared. The neat thing about the free enterprize system is that the good ideas get to kick the butts of the bad ideas all over the playground. If no one wants to share ideas, then we stagnate.

    Now as for the latest changes in the copyright law......

    The latest changes make it so that the rights of the author are still held for 75-95 years after the death of said author. This was an increase from the lifetime of the author plus 50 years in the copyright law passed in 1985.

    While that sounds extreme...I think we can look at it in another way. It really has to do with ownership. If you own something right now and you die, chances are that if it is valuable, it will stay in your family...but it sure in the heck does not pass out into Public Domain.

    Finally, while the new copyright law and the recent decision of the RIAA may seem unfair...the bottom line is that they do not impede the creation or sharing of ideas. After all, copyright just means that no one can use your intellectual property rights without compensating you - in other words, if you need to use an idea, that idea IS available to you. If you don't police intellectual rights, then ideas start to be withheld from you.
  9. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    Interesting article from the BBC about this:

    Music industry 'slow to change'

    by Darren Waters
    BBC News Online entertainment staff

    The music industry is threatening to sue individual computer users who download songs from the internet without paying for copyright.

    But some people believe it is the industry's fault for failing to meet consumers' needs and adapting too slowly to new technologies.

    Gerd Leonhard, founder and former chief executive officer of licensemusic.com and founder of digmarketing.com, told BBC News Online that the industry is clinging on to the past.

    "The industry has always opposed new technology," he said.
    "They are following a system that has worked for the last 50 years."

    The industry says it is a facing a global crisis as sales continue to drop worldwide year on year.

    Earlier this year the global music industry reported that album sales had dropped by 6%.

    The industry frequently paints a picture of crisis as it tries to stop music sales haemorrhaging away through online piracy and CD copying.

    Anthony Morgan, strategy director of music business and marketing agency Frukt, said the industry was trying to change.

    "It's more accurate to say that the industry is evolving into a new structure," he told BBC News Online.

    Music sales are falling but they are still at record levels compared with a decade ago, he said.

    CD albums - down 6%
    Singles - down 16%
    Cassettes - down 36%
    VHS - down 42%
    DVD - up 58%
    Source: IFPI

    He added: "Globally there is a decrease in sales - but from some of the highest sales of all time.
    "Sales are possibly dropping to something which is more realistic."

    Worldwide music sales amounted to $32bn (£20.5bn), according to recent figures.

    "Music is bigger than ever," said Mr Leonhard.

    "When you look at the numbers - 250 million downloads from [online music service] Kazaa for example.

    "People are enjoying more music more than ever before. That points to a great potential."

    Mr Leonhard argues that the industry is reacting slowly to change because it does not want to abandon business practices that have brought it great success over the last half a century.

    "The problem for the industry is: Who makes the money in the future?"

    He added: "The people who are making the money now are much less interested in making these changes."

    Mr Morgan said: "It is not an industry that has had to change much.

    "Traditionally the music industry has been about selling product on a piece of plastic.

    "The industry has been clinging to CDs for too long."
    The industry says it is making great strides to adapt but is struggling to cope with rampant piracy.

    Mr Morgan said: "Piracy is certainly having an effect. Within certain demographics - people who are downloading pirated music are probably buying less music.

    "The problem is: there is very little research into the effects of piracy: not just the detrimental effects but also into how consumers behave when they use these music websites."

    For the future, the music business should concentrate on artist development and artists' relations, said Mr Leonhard.

    The industry should cut the cost of CD and mp3 sales in order to curb piracy, he added.

    He said record labels were not taking advantage of back catalogues and needed to re-engage with people over 35 years old.

    Only 10% of adults over 35 still buy music, he said.

    He said despite the explosion in the use of mp3s the compact disc still ruled.

    "People will always want fixed media - at least for the next 15 years or until online music is ubiquitous."

    Story from BBC NEWS:

    Published: 2003/06/26 09:23:29 GMT


    With those kind of sales numbers, the recording industry isn't getting any of my sympathy.
  10. tuBass


    Dec 14, 2002
    Mesquite, Texas
    I find it interesting htat the only format that is up is the hardest one to copy.

    I found a funny quote in a News-leader article that has a quote that sums up the attitudes of so many young people today, including, unfortunatly, some of my relatives.

    What an idiot. If he thinks he owns the music as much as the composer, he deserves to get fined just to give him an education.

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