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The Real RIAA (and other True Crime Stories)

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Letters
To: Ashlee Vance

I cannot accept that the "Land of the Free" is accepting the nonsense propounded by the RIAA.

This desire to fine and litigate is becoming pervasive and foolishly assumes that you can modify normal human behaviour with LAW.

Firstly - all art forms are like children in that the creative urge is similar to the urge to reproduce. If we accept this analogy then it follows that as you do not own your children for their entire life you cannot expect to own your art for it's entire life. In fact, if the rules currently in force where in place in the earlier part of the last century then many films could not have been made and much music could not have been produced. Music belongs to us all.

Forever. Period. And we all inherently know this.

Secondly, Prohibition should have taught your law makers that their position is untenable

Thirdly, if your lawmakers studied history they would see that innovation actually expanded the market for entertainment - video and television allowed for sales and rental, and thus income, out of all proportion to what was possible before.

The RIAA should get off its high horse and tell its members to embrace this technology - like Apple but more and better. Look at the really old stuff and give it away plus sell the new good stuff at a price people are prepared to pay.

The RIAA is forgetting that the customer is ALWAYS right and he/she will and can vote with his $$$$. For too long I have bought CD's filled with trash I do not want because there is 1 tune that I want - hell yes, I feel that the music industry has ripped us off and now that the customer is fighting back they want to litigate.

RIAA GROW UP - you cannot (in the words of spoilt children) take your ball and go home because you are not getting your own way.

Jean Barnard





Since The Register has 'advertised' giving boobs and dating geeks how about an international reg backed whip round for the students. As far as your story says they didn't actually do anything morally objectionable. More importantly I'm sure it would piss the RIAA off no end.

Phil Standen





From: Gene Mosher
To: ashlee.vance@theregister.co.uk
Subject: RIAA

My great grandfather was born in 1870. He learned to build crystal radio sets to listen to the earliest radio broadcasts in the 1920's. He would invite the whole town of about 500 over to listen to them.

My grandfather was born in 1899. He purchased one of the earliest tape recorders to make copies of radio broadcasts for his friends in the late 1950s.

My dad was born in 1924. He had a collection of 78's that he passed around for many years until he died last year.

And now I am using the Internet to assemble an MP3 collection of all the tunes on all those LPs, cassette tapes and CD's that I've been buying since 1959.

I'll be damned in hell before I accept the notion that I and my ancestors who love to listen to the audio arts are in any sense guilty of anything that is illegal, wrong, evil, immoral or improper.

Gene Mosher ®

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RIAA cashes in on file-swapping students
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