×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

RIAA Forgets to Make Royalty Payments

michael posted more than 9 years ago | from the gentle-reminder dept.

341

theodp writes "NY Attorney General Eliot Spitzer agreed with the RIAA on one point - artists WERE being deprived of money that was rightfully theirs. But Spitzer managed to find $50 million for performers without shaking down grandmothers. Spitzer's culprits? A Who's Who of the nation's top recording companies - members of the RIAA - who failed to maintain contact with artists and stopped making required royalty payments."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

341 comments

Motives (5, Interesting)

Allen Zadr (767458) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072445)

Instead of coming right out and bashing the RIAA, (yes, that needs doing as well), I have a different question...

From the Article ( bold emphasis added):

"The companies have also agreed to comply with New York State's Abandoned Property Law, which requires that if an artist or his or her family cannot be found, unclaimed royalties be "escheated" or turned over to the state. The state then holds these monies until a claim is made."

While this will be great for a lot of artists I question the motive. I doubt that Eliot Spitzer is doing this for artists. I'm sure New York state will benefit from the interest revenue from "hold[ing] these monies. It won't hurt his career to have his name in the paper either.

Of course, I didn't bother to look up his record. Maybe he really is just doing his job, protecting the citizens of New York State.

Re:Motives (4, Funny)

JaffaKREE (766802) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072460)

without shaking down grandmothers.

But who knows what else they're getting away with ?
Shaking down grandmothers makes life worth living !

Re:Motives (5, Interesting)

spaeschke (774948) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072467)

Spitzer's been a great watchdog for US citizens. All of those crackdowns on securities violators? Primarily coming out of Spitzer's office. Of course, it also doesn't hurt his political career, but hey, the guy's been doing a bang up job as NY DA.

Re:Motives (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072499)

the guy's been doing a bang up job as NY DA.

He's really been doing a great job as the Attorney General, too. I'm sure you're right, though, that his days as Assistant DA in NYC were great, too.

Re:Motives (2, Funny)

spaeschke (774948) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072525)

Oh well. At least I gave him a better title than "law talking guy" =P

Re:Motives (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072540)

True. I just wanted to make sure he got his due. There are hundreds of DA's and Assistant DA's in NY but only one AG. Otherwise, even though I disliked him going in, I agree that he does seem to have done a bang up job.

Re:Motives (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072562)

I've been doing a bang-up job to your Mom's asshole.

Re:Motives (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072618)

True. I just wanted to know I liked watching better when you were going in than when you pulled out. Keep doing a bang up job.

Re:Motives (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072642)

My mom's really old, wrinkly and weird looking, I highly doubt you'd go anywhere near there with a 10 foot stick.

Re:Motives (5, Interesting)

Belisarivs (526071) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072625)

I remember reading an article pondering the next New York governors race. It was decided that Spitzer would be the best Democratic candidate, as his poll numbers were around 60% . . . among Republicans.

I'm a conservative Republican, and I voted for him last time around.

Re:Motives (5, Insightful)

Stephen R Hall (163541) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072489)

Better the money in New York State's coffers, where it will be of benefit to the public, than with the record companies, where a relatively small number of shareholders benefit from money that isn't theirs.

Re:Motives (3, Interesting)

Allen Zadr (767458) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072615)

Good point. See, I knew my question would get some good ol' RIAA bashing in.

So, how does New York prove which money is theirs to hold? New York holding money would do little good for someone who's living in Alaska or Hawii.

Re:Motives (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072763)

The record companies has already taken their cut anyway, so the only people deprived of anything would be the actual musicians.

Sure, David Bowie might not need the money, but you can bet that the more obscure musicians wouldn't mind it. Who knows, a few bands might get a chance to put out a second recording because of this.

Re:Motives (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072512)

These types of things are very common. Your grandfather dies? The state he died in keeps a loose tab on the goings on with what he had goings on. With somethings the companies are actually required to seek out would be heirs I think on the former owners 120th or so birthday.

Spitzer might well be a bitch. But the music industry isn't being asked anything that isn't already assumed in other industries. They should be ashamed, castrated, and their children sold into slavery/prostitution. They weren't attempting anything other than padding their bottom line. And it's terribly naive to entertain ideas that it was anything different, and the companies involved are anything other than completely and indefensibly in the wrong.

Re:Motives (4, Funny)

trentblase (717954) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072518)

The state then holds these monies until a claim is made.

I claim it! The article doesn't say the claim has to be substantiated. And everyone knows that some random newspaper quote can be legally binding in the hands of a madman.

Re:Motives (3, Informative)

Misch (158807) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072520)

He's been doing one hell of a job, though once in a blue moon I think he might let some companies off too easily. AG's do have discretion to do that though.

Besides, NY has a pretty advanced system for getting people in touch with their lost money [state.ny.us]

Why NY? Devil's advocate. (3, Interesting)

Allen Zadr (767458) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072738)

The article isn't clear, but how does NY know that they should be holding this money... What if I live in Nebraska?

So, I wake up from a five year coma. I go looking for my royalty checks, and am told that they are being held by the state.

So, I go down to the Comptroller's office in Lincoln and ask where my money is. They tell me it must be some other state. Well, my brother is in Florida... I'll call there. Nope. Oh, yeah, my mom in Arizona, maybe it's that state. Nope.

Why would my money be in New York? Why not California where a "marginal" majority of these contracts are signed? It's great that the proceeds from this money will go to benefit the people of New York, but what if I don't live there?

-1 Speculation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072554)

Of course, I didn't bother to look up his record. Maybe he really is just doing his job, protecting the citizens of New York State.

How can you be insightful without doign reasearch.

This post shoudl be at -1 speculation.

Re:Motives (5, Interesting)

davidu (18) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072595)


Spitzer has been doing an AWESOME job.

I don't think it's any secret that he has political aspirations -- even if you ask him -- but that doesn't change the fact that he has been going after the wall street crooks WAY harder than the feds have. He has been nailing people left and right and sticking them for all he can.

We need more people like Spitzer around to go after the bullshit without being crazy like Ashcroft.

-davidu

Re:Motives (1)

moviepig.com (745183) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072600)

While this will be great ... I question the motive.

Exercise:

1) Pick any generic beneficial public activity.

2) Identify the set of motives for performing it that are reasonably "beyond question".

3) Estimate the number of people embodying only those motives who have ever walked the earth.

4) Divide it into the number of people needed to accomplish the activity.

5) Stand back.

Re:Motives (3, Informative)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072769)

While this will be great for a lot of artists I question the motive. I doubt that Eliot Spitzer is doing this for artists. I'm sure New York state will benefit from the interest revenue from "hold[ing] these monies. It won't hurt his career to have his name in the paper either.

Having the state hold onto unclaimed property is standard procedure is most states. For example contents of safe-deposit boxes are kept by the state for years. The states do their best to locate rightful owners but like most states the unclaimed property departments are understaffed and underfunded so they can't do exhaustive searchs. Also I think that governments are forbidden by law to use the property in any way. So they cannot invest the money.

An exception to unclaimed property is insurance money from a policy. The insurance companies hold onto these while searching for beneficiaries. They CAN invest the money while searching. In some states I think that they have to pay interest when the owner is found, but they don't have to pay all the interest gained.

Enlarging your penii (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072446)

Is it good or is it whack?

Re:Enlarging your penii (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072485)

I'd say it's both good and whack. Good, in the way that it will make you more confident, help you in pleasing the ladies and allow to you show off more. Whack, because other members of the male population be jealous, and it might just go wrong and you'll end up with cockburn / scarring.

Assuming you have penii to start with, that is. Personally, I don't know of anyone with more than one penis.

Re:Enlarging your penii (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072486)

Good!

Everone knows all girls want a massive dick inside them.

Re:Enlarging your penii (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072601)

Everyone but them 13 year old white *witches*. Crying afterwards like they weren't begging for it.

Forget about the RIAA (-1, Offtopic)

FriendsForever (777483) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072462)

Don't you people realize tonight is the last episode of FRIENDS [nbc.com] ! Get your priorities straight!

Re:Forget about the RIAA (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072481)

I want to tittyfuck Jennifer Aniston.

Re:Forget about the RIAA (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072675)

screw Jennifer. Lisa Kudrow is where the hotness is.

the "harm", huh? (5, Insightful)

CoolVibe (11466) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072469)

I'd guess the music swappers are just a pinprick. The real hurt in the music industry is the RIAA itself, so it seems.

Oh well. Good that they caught this. The artist do deserve their money.

Doesn't harm the industry at all ! (1)

gosand (234100) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072730)

I'd guess the music swappers are just a pinprick. The real hurt in the music industry is the RIAA itself, so it seems.

Until they got caught, this didn't hurt the music industry at all. It hurt the artists, yes. But the RIAA *IS* the music industry, and they were the benefactors of this "mistake".

So while I agree with your sentiment, I'd have to disagree with your statement.

Hmm... (4, Interesting)

odano (735445) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072475)

I am as anti-RIAA as the next guy, but this doesn't seem all that bad.

The RIAA is going out of there way to correct a royalty problem that may/may not have entirely been their fault. And the article makes it seem that it was the idea of an RIAA lawyer.

Just my 2 cents...

Re:Hmm... (1)

El_Ge_Ex (218107) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072583)

The RIAA is going out of there way to correct a royalty problem that may/may not have entirely been their fault. And the article makes it seem that it was the idea of an RIAA lawyer.


Except that it wasn't the RIAA that was doing the work, it was the NY DA.

"Oh, we haven't been paying the artists?!? Well, they moved and we don't know where to mail them to anymore..."

Congress had been itching for a chance to catch the record companies with this and the RIAA knows this. Now they won't have to worry about it even though they had been screwing over artists for decades.

Just my 2 cents... ;)

-B

Re:Hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072626)

Geez another guy. AG not DA. He is the Attorney General of the State of New York. The D is DA is for district. The state is a little bit more than a district.

Re:Hmm... (5, Insightful)

pubjames (468013) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072614)

The RIAA is going out of there way to correct a royalty problem that may/may not have entirely been their fault.

The RIAA was collecting money on behalf of the artists. If they kept it without making much effort to track down the rightful owners, then that's theft as far as I'm concerned. Especially if they insist on calling 12yr old children thieves for swapping mp3s.

Re:Hmm... (3, Interesting)

Daemonik (171801) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072688)

The RIAA collects fines from people who violate the copyrights of it's membership. All monies collected in this endeavor are kept by the RIAA.

Their stance that they are fighting to see artists get paid is based on the theory that if they stop copyright violation, everyone will buy legitimate copies of the work and the record company will pay the artists. The RIAA is not actually writing checks out to Metallica, except perhaps for their promotional work.

Re:Hmm... (4, Funny)

theAmazing10.t (770643) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072765)

They must not of made too much effort in finding these artists. Some of the names on the list shouldn't be to hard to find.

I mean if they can't find Dolly Parton then obviously they aren't looking too hard.

No no no. (5, Funny)

bl1st3r (464353) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072478)

Don't villianize the RIAA. It's not their fault the artists didn't want their money. After all, it should be the artists responsibility to track all playings of their song around the world.

That lie aside, the RIAA sucks. I'm glad I'm not a musician on an RIAA label, I would hate myself.

Re:No no no. (1)

Kegster (685608) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072674)

I dunno, maybe some of them actually enjoy
being butt-raped by a splintered broom handle,
which seems to be the nearest thing to having
a record deal with an RIAA label, unless(even if?)
you happen to be a major superstar

Does this mean (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072480)

that napster can be free again?

Say it aint so! (5, Funny)

dirtsurfer (595452) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072482)

Don't tell me the RIAA are a bunch of hypocritical, dishonest bastards! Now I have nothing left to believe in.

Any hope of draconian fines? (5, Interesting)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072484)

Say, fine the RIAA members $100K per non-paying incident, like they were threatening to charge the kiddie downloaders?

Friggin' corporate pirates should be MADE to pay their proper dues!

yep (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072557)

I am a hard core right winger, and almost always think that slashdot is way to hard on corporations.

This I agree on though. The RIAA are a bunch of friggin' corporate pirates.

Re:Any hope of draconian fines? (5, Interesting)

Progman3K (515744) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072567)

>Say, fine the RIAA members $100K per non-paying incident, like they were threatening to charge the kiddie downloaders?

Well, if they're guilty of stealing from artists, like they claim P2P users are, then they should pay the same fines, shouldn't they?

Oh boy, it would be interesting to watch the RIAA lobby for that!

Re:Any hope of draconian fines? (5, Insightful)

in7ane (678796) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072591)

I, well, by RIAA's logic actually, also suggest prison time [riaa.com] - hey, it's only fair, they did benefit financially from this.

Re:Any hope of draconian fines? (1)

Tokerat (150341) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072771)


If there was more than one incedent, I recommend nothing less than capital punishment.

...Hey, think of the artists.

Obvious (1)

Lovedumplingx (245300) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072492)

Who didn't see that coming? It's like accusing your roommate of stealing the keys and then finding out you left them in the car. Now big business and bad accountants have ruined a good thing for a whole bunch of people.

Try to imagine: (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072494)

In Soviet Russia, RIAA pays you!

Re:Try to imagine: (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072552)

Would it be the RIAR? Or do you mean that the last 'A' in RIAA is now 'Arctic'?

You forgot to uppercase the YOU (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072692)

YOU

Abandoned Property? (0, Insightful)

hal2814 (725639) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072495)

It looks like the RIAA wasn't paying because the artists didn't bother to get their payments from them. I'm sure if David Bowie wanted his money he could have gone to the RIAA and gotten it, but he didn't bother to go to the RIAA to get his money. Maybe the RIAA could have tried a little harder to contact these people, but I know that if the someone owes me money, they're going to be hearing from me until I get it.

Re:Abandoned Property? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072524)

Except that the artist doesn't always know that they are owed the money. Do you think they keep track of the sales of every one of their songs (both written and recorded)?

Re:Abandoned Property? (2, Funny)

agentZ (210674) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072546)

"Hi? I'm calling for Mr. er... Ziggy Stardust. ... Wrong number? Oh, sorry to have you bothered you. It won't happen again."

Re:Abandoned Property? (4, Insightful)

mirko (198274) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072553)

Some artists do not even know they are subject to reimbursement or royalties from the RIAA, they just happen to sign up with a small company (which is part of)^n [songlyrics.com] an RIAA member...

Re:Abandoned Property? (1)

16K Ram Pack (690082) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072768)

Tried a little harder to find David Bowie or Gloria Estefan? That's like saying you can't find a McDonalds in a major city.

These guys have websites, do tours, charity events, probably get Hello! magazine to photograph their houses. It wouldn't take much to call around.

If they were talking about some old bluesman who'd disappeared or was going senile in a retirement home, fair enough, but this is silly.

Re:Abandoned Property? (1)

Daemonik (171801) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072770)

Do you think Bowie actually walks his royalty checks to the bank? No, that's taken care of by his accountants.

Speaking of, I can understand if a record company lost track of a band that put out one single in the 60's but how the hell do you loose track of David Bowie? Not to mention, how do you loose track of David Bowie's attorney's and accountants?

Considering that according to the article, the recording industry initiated this project and that it goes above and beyond what the law requires, it feels like they are attempting to position themselves for a new junta on copyright legislation. It seems like it's the only reason they'd take the initiative to clear their books of any perception of defrauding their artists.

Common sense (5, Insightful)

rdilallo (682529) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072496)

I don't understand why the government has not seen the RIAA as an orginization that doesn't adhear to the rules that it's set for everyone else. They have such deep pockets, they can make the effort to locate the artists and pay the royalties. Don't be surprised that this has happened. There's much more to come out of this...

Where does the money go? (5, Interesting)

bigjnsa500 (575392) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072501)

If these royalties for artists that they can't find, what happens to the money? Does it go into a general fund or does it go back to RIAA to line their pockets?

Another question would be WHY the RIAA lost touch with these artists. Was it on purpose or accident?

Re:Where does the money go? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072599)

I started to look a the law but I really am not in the legal mood today. Perhaps somebody else wants to puzzle through it. [findlaw.com]

Re:Where does the money go? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072732)

My guess is it sits in an interest bearing account. They have no reason to not attempt to gain a profit, and quite frankly for business purposes this makes the most sense.

Three little words... (5, Insightful)

Moryath (553296) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072503)

"Standard Industry Practice."

RIAA members ripping off their artists is nothing new - it's been documented over and over and fucking over again. I'm sure some slashdotters can point to half a dozen articles written by artists who point out that, by the time the RIAA gets done doing the math on a "standard" industry contract, an even moderately sucessful artist winds up OWING a few thousand dollars to the label and is pretty much an indentured servant, because they can't jump labels to find a better deal by the terms of the contract.

What we REALLY need is for some court ruling to take all those fucking provisions, and declare them illegal. THEN when the RIAA cries about "artists" being deprived of money due to file sharing, I might give a rat's ass about their bullshit argument.

The man who fell to earth and back? (5, Insightful)

Deanasc (201050) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072505)

I find it completely unconsionable that the RIAA failed to protect the artists rights and make payments when due. Claiming they couldn't find the artists involved is a fabrication of the most fraudulent kind. It's not like David Bowie has fallen off the face of the earth.

Re:The man who fell to earth and back? (1)

operagost (62405) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072740)

Well, he was sitting in a tin can high over the world at one point ...

Really, if you can't find a celebrity's address, just read a few supermarket tabloids or something. I'm sure some paparazzi will print it in there.

yayaya (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072510)

* If you expect companies to follow the copyright of the GPL, you should support the RIAA going after infringers of its copyright. If not, you're a hypocrite.

* There is absolutely nothing wrong with a company being upset that its product is being pirated freely over online networks. A recent Slashdot poll showed that the majority of Slashotters are unemployed or are students ("academics"), which explains a lot. Try getting a real job sometime and see what it feels like when your work is everywhere, and you start worrying that your days are numbered. Does John Carmack want you to "sample" his new game via the "free advertising" happening on eMule?

* At the 2004 WinHEC, Allchin demonstrated an alpha version of Longhorn that played six high-resolution videos at the same time while playing Quake III in the background. An equivalent XP machine couldn't play more than four videos. Meanwhile, I can't even get xmms to play without skipping, and windows to drag without visual tearing! That's because KDE and GNOME are hacks to emulate a desktop on top of the crufty XFree86 architecture that people won't let die (Linux users absolutely fear change).

* VA Linux-owned Slashdot thinks its niche opinion represents the majority of the world. This is a result of people visiting every day and buying into the groupthink. Nobody outside of Slashdot knows or cares about "Linux," "RIAA", "M$," or anything else Slashdotters think is such a huge issue in today's society. Go to a mall or coffee shop sometime and see what people actually talk
about.

* Speaking of VA Linux--it's a Linux company...that owns a "tech news" site...that posts news stories negative toward competitors like Microsoft. If a Windows company or even Microsoft itself owned a "tech news" site and posted anti-Linux articles all the time, everyone would be up in arms. But with VA Linux, it's a-okay.

* Slashbots think people don't like the music coming out these days, which is the cause of the piracy. Never mind that if people didn't like the music they wouldn't be pirating it, most Slashbots--again, this goes back to the niche opinion thing--don't realize that most people these days love the music coming out and want to hear all of it. Probing around, you discover that Slashdot is made up of nerds and fogies who listen to things like The Who and Blind Guardian and techno--not what mainstream society enjoys.

* Any company ending in "AA" is evil. Especially if it doesn't want you distributing its works without paying for it. Somehow, this mindset is supposed to make sense.

* The inevitable result of all this is a world in which nothing can be profitable because people simply pirate free copies. Is that really what Slashbots want? OSS and free-ness in general reminds me of the hippie era of the 60s--idealistic socialism that only exists because of the surrounding capitalism around it that provides the environment for it to exist. We all know what happened to that idea.

* Linux rules the desktop, when in reality [google.com]: Windows = 91%; Mac = 4%; Linux = 1%

* Slashdot editors are abusive. We all remember The Post. It's amusing the editors never mention the issue. The worst editor is michael, who will mod you down, insult you for your post count, and post unprofessional color commentary along with the article. This is the same bizarre person who cybersquatted Censorware for years--even as Slashdot posted articles negative toward cybersquatting! Michael played it off like he was some sort of stalking victim, which made it all the more bizarre.

* The moderation system is broken. If you mod someone as "Overrated," you can't be metamodded. People abuse this all the time to gang up and knock you down into oblivion.

* If "Linux" just refers to the kernel and not the operating system, how can "FreeBSD" refer to the operating system (userland tools, standard libraries, etc.) and not just the kernel? Face it, "GNU/Linux" looks and sounds ridiculous.

* Slashdot is all about spinning truth for its agenda and posting outright falsehoods. In this article [slashdot.org], for instance, Roblimo claims that Baystar spokesman Bob McGraith "admitted" that their "only viable asset is the potential proceeds of lawsuits against Linux users and vendors." And yet, in the very next sentence, his real words are given: "We're looking for the best return we can, and we think the focus should be on IP licensing (and enforcement)." Ignoring the outright lie RobLimo posted about what was said, Bob McGraith describes what every standard IP company does--run their business on the licensing of their valuable IP. If that isn't enough, Slashdot's own VA Linux stated in their recent 10Q filing [yahoo.com] the exact same thing: "We rely on a combination of copyright, trademark and trade-secret laws, employee and third-party nondisclosure agreements, and other arrangements to protect our proprietary rights." But hypocrisy and double-standards don't matter to an agenda-driven group like Slashdot. It's all about "whatever it takes" to discredit those on your geek blacklist.

* SCO and other companies are evil scum, manipulating stock prices and going to the extreme to be greedy. Right? Meanwhile, the SEC investigated VA Linux's IPO [com.com] for "questionable IPO practices." VA Linux owns Slashdot.

* Slashdot breathlessly reported that AMD beat Intel in CPU sales [slashdot.org] by 2% for one week (gee, whiz, what a victory). Meanwhile, it was omitted from the article that AMD only beat Intel in RETAIL desktop sales. Dell hasn't been selling AMDs [forbes.com], and Dell, among others, does not count as retail. According to the article Intel still outsold AMD in the PC market with a 61% share. Of course this is helped by their 81% share in notebook sales a market that AMD has been unable to succeed. This is crucial because according to the article this market is the fastest growing segment of the PC market. The anti-Intel spin is amazing. But not unpredictable, because Windows and Intel go hand in hand, and therefore "Wintel" is evil. Right? Even though laptop sales account for over 50% of PC sales, and AMD has ignored that market...

* Somehow, user-ran executables are always a "New Microsoft Hole" (actual article headline). Meanwhile, LinuxSecurity [linuxsecurity.com] posts weekly security advisories for all the Linux distributions. You never, ever, EVER see any of these mentioned on Slashdot--bizarre things like arbitrary code execution via MPlayer.

* OSS advocates complain about the lack of innovation coming from Microsoft. Often, these posts are written from KDE using an integrated filesystem/HTML browser, a taskbar, a start menu, and more. Apparently, nobody wants to admit that the only reason those are implemented is because much-criticized Windows 98 did it first. Clone, clone, clone. This is the life of an open source wannabe. One of these days, they'll actually come up with an original idea that ordinary people can use to create interest in their offerings. Until then, it's going to be, "Yeah, we'll be able to do that soon, too."

* This opinion poll [opinion.com.au] shows that 56% of respondents hadn't even heard of Linux.

* Microsoft is supposed to be some sort of non-innovative rip-off artist. Meanwhile, the same people posting those comments do it through KDE with taskbars, sidepanels, start menus, similar print dialogs, and an integrated web/filesystem browser. Slashdotters--ripping people off then criticizing those who came up with the ideas in the first place.

* Linux is "ready for the desktop." This is the yearly uttering since 1998. Never mind that there is STILL no binary installation/uninstallation API for desktops, you can't come home with a printer and a CD and stick it in to get an Autoplay menu that lets you set up the driver. Somehow, Linux is just magically supposed to be ready--that is, if someone else sets it up for you and you never change or add your hardware or software and doing nothing else but check e-mail and browse the web. Conveniently, this includes grandmas, so people can post their grandma-using-Linux stories as "proof." As a recent article on Slashdot pointed out, Linux can't even run a generic soundcard that 10-year-old Windows 95 has no problem with.

* Hypocrisy is accusing Windows XP of being "riddled with spyware" without actually citing a single example, and if you run Windows Media Player, the very first thing it gives you is the privacy page allowing you to disable automatic grabbing of song titles. Meanwhile, almost every single standard Linux media player automatically grabs titles from places like freedb.com without asking you first. One OS grabs song titles and it's spyware, the other grabs song titles and nobody mentions a single thing. Hypocrisy.

* Slashdot professes to be some sort of golden defender of consumer copyright law. Few people remember that in an IRC chat, Hemos said that what DailySlash is doing was "illegal" and that they should stop.

* Corporate-owned, subscription fees, banner ads, reposts, and complete falsehoods. Remember when Slashdot was a great tech news site for nerds? Before the point of the site was to have an anti-RIAA, anti-"M$" agenda? When it was just about posting cool technology stories regardless, before VA Linux took it over?

Slashdot is dead.

Re:yayaya (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072536)

Slashdot users also have no sense of humor.. finding "In Soviet Russia" jokes, jokes about CowboyNeal, jokes about "you insensitive clod", and jokes about making everything into Beowulf clusters funny. Slashdot is dead, seconded.

Well.. (5, Insightful)

patrick.whitlock (708318) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072514)

Does this mean that since the RIAA is out 50 mil... (that THEY diddn't think to give to the rightful owner).... the 50 mil will be deducted from the amount of money made through cd sales so they can whine a bit more about file sharing?

Cat and Mouse (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072528)

Forgive my oversimplification of the RIAA (and Anti-RIAA) tactics, but it seems to me like this is such a cat and mouse game. Someone points out problems with the RIAA, the RIAA points out problems with filesharing. One-Up to P2P, One-Up to RIAA. I'm waiting to see if politics, technology and common sense can elicit some sort of resolution to this perpetual nonsense. I won't hold my breath.

Don't they want their money? (2, Insightful)

hyphun (728915) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072537)

I don't understand. If you move, and you know you will get royalties from a record label... Won't YOU tell them your new adress??? I Would!

I'm sure they're having trouble (2, Interesting)

u-238 (515248) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072544)

coming to terms with the fact that the new-yacht-a-month club is going to have to tone down and make with what they already have.

A digital robin hood am I, and through my uploading I give to the poor.

Re:I'm sure they're having trouble (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072739)

Umm... Yeah... But the thing is, Robin Hood did NOT steal from the rich and give to the poor, he stole from the GOVERNMENT and gave to the poor.

Big difference.

Lost track of these artists? (5, Insightful)

southpolesammy (150094) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072547)

Prominent artists who were owed royalty payments included: David Bowie, Dolly Parton, Harry Belafonte, Liza Minnelli, Dave Matthews, Sean Combs and Gloria Estefan.

Ummm....how exactly do you lose track of your prominent artists? And for that matter, why aren't the agents of these artists banging down the doors at Sony, BMI, Vivendi, EMI, and so forth to get the royalties? IOW, the agents conveniently forgot to collect? Something doesn't sound right here -- when in the history of business has someone not aggressively pursued their debtors?

Re:Lost track of these artists? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072575)

And they couldn't find Regis Philbin!?

Host of one of the more popular syndicated shows which regularly runs write-in and call-in contests. And they COULDN'T FIND HIM?

Right.

Re:Lost track of these artists? (5, Interesting)

ExistentialFeline (696559) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072716)

This assumes that the artists know they are owed money. If the artists were contacted on a semi-regular basis about payments and the companies occasionally "forgot" about some money it may not be obvious for the artists to ask for the money. IE a check for $2500 could be only half of what they owe but the artist don't know any better since the artist hasn't asked exactly what their debt is; they just know they're owed something.

Of course as things usually are on /. this is wild speculation.

compared to cd sales decline (5, Insightful)

nuffle (540687) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072563)

According to CNN, sales dropped about 7.5% [slashdot.org] from 2002 levels of 32.2 billion to 2003 sales of 32.0 billion. RIAA blames "rampant piracy" for this.

Therefore, according to RIAA, piracy accounted for 200 million in sales loss. Therefore (unless artists get 25% or more of retail) with this announcement of withholding 50m in royalties from artists, the RIAA itself is personally responsible for more monetary loss to artists than piracy.

Re:compared to cd sales decline (2, Insightful)

Neph (5010) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072660)

According to CNN, sales dropped about 7.5% from 2002 levels of 32.2 billion to 2003 sales of 32.0 billion

Forgive the offtopiccage, but wtf? That's 0.6% not 7.5%. Those are the figures quoted in the article, too, no typos. No wonder these clowns managed to lose $50M with those kinds of math skills...

Re:compared to cd sales decline (1)

allTech (725655) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072682)

Haven't they heard of a recession? I just wonder what all "affects" the sales of records and find it hard to believe that just "rampant piracy" is to blame. Maybe it's because a bunch of middle-agged, middle managment people were laid off and had to sell all their extra toys and take out a second mortgage just to stay afloat. I'm not saying that piracy isn't contributing but I get tired of people making sweeping accusations to the media who thrive on shock tactics anyway.

Re:compared to cd sales decline (4, Interesting)

Matrix272 (581458) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072707)

According to CNN, sales dropped about 7.5% from 2002 levels of 32.2 billion to 2003 sales of 32.0 billion. RIAA blames "rampant piracy" for this.

I'd love to see a comparison of all the years between 1999 and 2003 for sales decreases, number of releases, average age of the buyer, and the cost of a CD. Then, I'd like to see that cross-referenced with the recession in the economy, including such factors as unemployment rates, average income per household, etc. After you have all that, cross-reference all that with what the RIAA claims it's lost from file sharing. I can almost guarantee you it's nothing even near what they're claiming, and any decrease in sales has been just as drastic as any other major industry in the country.

What is with the hatred? (-1, Troll)

will_die (586523) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072577)

Whoever created the header RTFA!
So what if the parties were members of the RIAA, the RIAA was not responsible. I am sure most of thoses companies CEO are members of the democrat party, that does not make the democrat party guilty of this.

Re:What is with the hatred? (1)

Gabrill (556503) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072641)

You're blind. Even if "most of thoses companies CEO are members of the democrat party," they still don't make up a majority or even a controlling factor of the Democratic Party.

The same is not true of the RIAA

Agreed to comply? (5, Insightful)

Huh? (105485) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072587)

The companies have also agreed to comply with New York State's Abandoned Property Law, which requires that if an artist or his or her family cannot be found, unclaimed royalties be "escheated" or turned over to the state.

I didn't know you had to 'agree' with a law before it was applicable to you. Interesting.

Re:Agreed to comply? (1)

JaffaKREE (766802) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072727)

"Sorry, your honor. I chose not to agree to comply with copyright law."
Judge: "Case Dismissed!"

Re:Agreed to comply? (2, Interesting)

The Famous Brett Wat (12688) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072755)

I didn't know you had to 'agree' with a law before it was applicable to you.

Sure you do, in New York, at least. Only a little earlier I was reading how the well-known "email marketing mogul", Scott Richter, is "agreeing to abide by a new federal anti-spam law" [rockymountainnews.com] as a part of a settlement with A.G. Spitzer. Nice to see he's making these naughty people promise to be good in future.

$50 million in cheated royalties? (5, Interesting)

Mudcathi (584851) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072590)

The RIAA has sued what, 3000 people so far? With an average "catch" of $2500 each? If these numbers are correct, that's $7.5 million. Versus $50 million that RIAA cheated their own artists out of!

Two wrongs do not make a right (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072592)

Have any of you ever paid a bill slightly (or even very) late? Ever take out a loan, with which you intended to enrich yourself, and then take longer to pay it back than you originally contracted?

If yes, do you then have the right to criticize the RIAA?

The fact is, RIAA's actions, though despicable, are ultimately irrelevant to whether or not it is morally acceptable, and/or should be legally acceptable, to copy and distribute someone else's work without authorization, contract or payment arrangement. The fact that RIAA members were lax paying artists does not give anyone a free pass, morally or legally, to download music illicitly. It does not make the claim that artists are being ripped off by illegal music downloaders any more or less debatable.

This is not an issue appropriate for posting to slashdot IMO. When the story deals with whether downloads are/should be acceptable, it's a tech story. When the story is about an RIAA conflict with artists, and the sole reason for posting it is to wag the finger of shame at RIAA for being hypocrites (ostensibly), that's just pandering and incitement.

Re:Two wrongs do not make a right (3, Insightful)

Tirs (195467) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072652)

>Have any of you ever paid a bill slightly (or even very) late? Ever take out a loan, with which you intended to enrich yourself, and then take longer to pay it back than you originally contracted?

Never. Even when I had to sell personal property to avoid it, I made a point of honoring my debts on the appointed date. And I am not a fat-rich-corp-guy like the RIAA. In other words: even if I had answered "yes", probably it would have been "because I couldn't, since didn't have the money". Do you think the RIAA does not have the money or cannot pay to the artists?

So I am rightfully angry against these robbers.

And yes, it is an issue appropiate for /. because the ultimate subject in the war between RIAA and the rest of the non-corporate world is... di-gi-tal rights. "Digital" as in "geek".

RIAA TO RECORDING ARTISTS: (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072594)

"SOLLY CHOLLY!"

How do you lose major artists (-1, Redundant)

dfcox530 (593836) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072605)

I can understand not being able to find some group that recorded some obscure song way back when but how can you say you could locate say, Sean "Puffy" Combs or some other well know artist. That sounds fishy to me.

Then not only should the RIAA make sure they are (4, Interesting)

Phil John (576633) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072650)

...paid...they should be paid with interest plus fined/sued for compensation. This is a perfect opportunity to point out that there shouldn't be one rule for consumers and one rule for the conglomerates.

Yes! (0, Redundant)

moxruby (152805) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072667)

Another rhetorical tool I can use to justify my ongoing piracy!

40gigs and counting, baby.

Is anyone suprised (3, Funny)

cluge (114877) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072676)

Somwhere at an RIAA office:

"Hello, kettle it's the pot, line 2, he's says your black"

cluge

Lying about the lies that they lied about (4, Insightful)

JSkills (69686) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072690)

The RIAA being a filthy bunch of liars is one thing (in that they continuously ignorethe real statistics in regards to file sharing and CD sales), but it's even worse that they knowingly shame others into doing what they want under the guise of some righteous premise that they themselves are violating to a much greater extent. Ripping off the artists that they're suing everyone else on the behalf of - sickening really.

Kind of reminds of me of some bigger (cough - Catholic Church) examples (cough - US war effort).

I'm sure that last bit will get me slammed. There goes my karma =D

Not the RIAA: more FUD (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072697)

I must point out that it is only individual members of the RIAA, not the RIAA itself, that are responsible for failing to pass on the royalties, and this in no way reflects RIAA policies. It simply shows poor or irresponsible book keeping on the part of the companies involved.

To pre-empt any ad-hominem replies: I do not like the RIAA's tactics & I was once signed to one of the companies mentioned (BMG). But claiming this is an RIAA act is entirely incorrect, self gratifying FUD, and as we all know, spouting crap in lieu of facts does not make a convincing case. If you want to criticize a system, learn how the system works first.

Damn it... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9072713)

...I hate them so much!!!!!!!!

Hilarious! (3, Insightful)

beforewisdom (729725) | more than 9 years ago | (#9072722)

With all of the noxious public actions they have taken it turns out the RIAA is the biggest music music theif of them all.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...