Digital Rights

misha

Still a bit noob
Oct 5, 2009
13
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A friend wrote the following article and it would be interesting to get the group's opinions. I will attribute his name to it after I contact him.

"The internet has changed the way the world consumes music, this is an undeniable fact. However, the internet has also changed many other industries. It has most probably indelibly altered more than it has left unscathed, it is, in fact, the most radical change to commercial enterprise in the history of the world.

In light of this change, industries have adapted like the apes which, some millions of years ago, were considering the prospect of coming down from the trees. The music industry, however, stubbornly refuses to do so. Instead it clings to old formulas, as though if it clings hard enough they might mean something again, but the fact remains that the amount of people illegally downloading their product numbers in the hundreds of millions, and that many people cant be simply criminalized, because to criminalize, you have to marginalize, and you simply cannot marginalize a majority, and you certainly shouldn't criminalize your customers. Its bad business. New technology has always changed markets, and the companies that survived the change were the ones prepared to adapt to the change.

And a comet is coming. In fact, its already here, and its called the internet. It represents, for millions of people, a new way to make a living, a new format for distribution. It has been said that if your company does not have a website, it does not exist, and the best companies are websites. Google and Ebay have grown more in the short life of the internet than most companies did over the whole twentieth century. The major-label music industry is afraid, though, that the grossly immense profits it has grown accustomed to will dwindle and diminish if it embraces this new development, and whether or not you realize it, because of this the behemoths are rapidly becoming old news. The "big four" (Sony, Universal, EMI and Warner) are dying. But they are still dinosaurs, and dinosaurs have a lot of weight to throw around, even if they have little thought behind the throwing. And my are they throwing it. With attack dogs like the RIAA and outdated (and morally dubious) intellectual copyright laws behind them they sue people in the thousands, meanwhile ensuring the lawsuits attain press coverage, in an attempt to scare the public out of their "thieving" habits. They lobby politicians to their cause to maintain the status quo and keep these laws alive.

But it doesn't matter what they do, because, as a result of their "scare tactics", they are now widely distrusted by the people they rely on for income, and that is seriously bad for business. Their eventual demise will leave a gap which will eventually be filled by some bright, cutting edge indie label with a clever business model that takes advantage of the opportunities offered by the internet. Until then, however, people need to take action to either starve the major labels of their cash flow and cease to buy their CD's (only around 10% of the profits of which actually go to the artists anyway) while continuing to support non RIAA indie labels, or even better; take political action to amend the erroneous laws which maintain their weakening stranglehold on both artists and the consumer. Change will happen, but its up to the consumer to create it. The customer is always right."

Links for further reading:
http://www.demonbaby.com/blog/2007/10/when-pigs-fly-death-of-oink-birth-of.html

http://www.negativland.com/albini.html

http://www.riaaradar.com/

http://dir.salon.com/story/tech/feature/2003/02/01/file_trading_manifesto/index.html

"In big industry new ideas are invited to rear their heads so they can be clobbered at once. The idea department of a big firm is a sort of lab for isolating dangerous viruses." ~ Marshall McLuhan


 

Unhappy Camper

Hells yeah
Founder
Mar 10, 2008
5,012
25
178
Fayettenam Area, NC
I'm not a fan of 'warez' and torrent type shops that make thousands of types of media available for Joe Public to download. Full versions of products in fact.

This is why a copy of MS office runs into the hundreds of dollars. MS knows their shit is being bootlegged and pads their margin to recoup.

I'm no saint, I've watched thousands of 1st run movies even before they hit the theaters. And I will continue to do so until technology makes it too difficult to get around the security measures.

I remember the days when VHS tapes were "copy protected" .. and to break said protection all one had to do was place a bit of cellophane over an open tap port on the back of the tape.

Also .. the CD burner had the makers of programs and movies scrambling for a way to copy protect .. their initial defense was a "don't burn" track on the cd .. easily defeated by running a black sharpie around the discs edge.

Time encrypted demo software, copy "proof" cd formats and so only fuel the egg head community to come up with new ways to break the code.

The only way the industry will make this a smaller issue is to physically knock down doors and pull a dude out in hand cuffs. Their recent court battles has show the public has no taste for a Soccer mom being made to pay a six figure fine for using Kazaa as a P2P platform.

Its an oily pig for sure .. I don't have an answer to the industries issues .. and I feel 100% confident the illegal sharing of copy write works will continue.



( I also added an image to your article .. it makes it look more "news-Y". )
 

misha

Still a bit noob
Oct 5, 2009
13
0
1
47
I'm not a fan of 'warez' and torrent type shops that make thousands of types of media available for Joe Public to download. Full versions of products in fact.

This is why a copy of MS office runs into the hundreds of dollars. MS knows their shit is being bootlegged and pads their margin to recoup.

I'm no saint, I've watched thousands of 1st run movies even before they hit the theaters. And I will continue to do so until technology makes it too difficult to get around the security measures.
I'm no saint either but I think I'll let this breath for a bit and see if anyone else responds before I offer an opinion. One observation though:

I agree that MS jacks the list price on SWare but do not see it as recouping. The large majority of MS Office (or any other ridiculously overpriced SW) illegal dwnlds are done by users that would never consider purchasing it. They simply jack it because they can imo. Same as the mega pharmaceutical corporations (see the differential between Canadian and American drug prices). One other thing; very few countries go after file-sharers. U.S., Italy (Berlesconi made goddamn sure of this), and The Netherlands are the only ones that come to mind.

Don't know if you bothered with the fisrt link Cranium but it's to the blog of a guy who does the artwork for Nine Inch Nails, an extremely popular and profitable group. He has seen it from most angles.
 

bahumbas

Dude!
Aug 29, 2009
55
0
6
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Change has already occured and like it or not those companies are going to have to adapt to this change or die trying. So far their attempts don't seem to be going so well.
 

Absinthe

Moderator
Staff member
Founder
Mar 2, 2008
658
2
18
I remember the "good old days" when we (the kids) had a radio/tape recorder combo. It was really cool if you had one with a double tape option. All we did was to record music of the radio to one tape, than recorded only what we wanted to keep from that tape to another. Did we make copies of said tapes for friends? Yes, sure we did. Did anyone complain about music rights? Nope!