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RIAA Co-Opts More Universities

simoniker posted more than 10 years ago | from the more-more-more dept.

Privacy 305

southpolesammy writes "The Register reports that six more US Universities and colleges have agreed to enter into protection schemes with the RIAA. In short, several institutions have signed deals with the RIAA's lapdog, the Napster music service, to 'goad these schools toward becoming music brokers'. The underlying threat of being sued by the RIAA if they don't pay them off is almost certainly the driving force behind their acceptance of this scheme. And of course, there's the ever-present gag order they'll probably enforce on these new universities as well. Great business model guys. Way to engender yourselves to your biggest customer base."

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Aiiggghhh (4, Funny)

digitalhermit (113459) | more than 10 years ago | (#9741971)

I'll do many things, but engendering myself with the RIAA is not one of them.

Re:Aiiggghhh (1)

vsprintf (579676) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742190)

Perhaps he's saying the RIAA is engendering (in the sense of procreating with) itself in the view of its customers. It has certainly done that. :)

Biggest customer base? (1)

cubicledrone (681598) | more than 10 years ago | (#9741973)

But I thought nobody would pay for something that they can get for free? How can they be a customer base?

Re:Biggest customer base? (2, Insightful)

pudding7 (584715) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742087)

People buy bottled water.

Re:Biggest customer base? (1)

caino59 (313096) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742147)

people also pay a water bill.

and sewage bill

Re:Biggest customer base? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742477)

Public water fountain + some type of bottle = free bottled water.

Basic literacy is a must (4, Interesting)

Jeremi (14640) | more than 10 years ago | (#9741979)

en*gen*der ( P ) Pronunciation Key (n-jndr)
v. en*gen*dered, en*gen*der*ing, en*gen*ders
v. tr.

To bring into existence; give rise to: "Every cloud engenders not a storm" (Shakespeare).
To procreate; propagate.
v. intr.

To come into existence; originate.

Re:Basic literacy is a must (4, Funny)

offpath3 (604739) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742284)

I think clearly the definition they were going for is:

2. To come together; to meet, as in sexual embrace.

Re:Basic literacy is a must (1)

MrBlue VT (245806) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742479)

You endear me with your lovely witticism.

RIAA General (4, Funny)

SIGALRM (784769) | more than 10 years ago | (#9741984)

Cornell University, the George Washington University, Middlebury College, University of Miami, the University of Southern California and the Wright State University (Ohio) have all pledged to have Napster up and running in the near future
Two years ago, who could have possibly imagined such a quote from a serious news article?

For fun trivia, Which "slash-and-burn" Sherman was more agressive... (A) [riaa.com] --or-- (B) [ngeorgia.com] ?

It's about time. (4, Interesting)

kneecarrot (646291) | more than 10 years ago | (#9741985)

Call me a troll if you want, but it's at least good to see the RIAA trying to have dealings with a college or university that aren't purely legal! Yes, I know that some will say that the institutions were pressured on pain of lawsuits, but has that been confirmed?

Re:It's about time. (1)

Logicdisorder (686635) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742216)

No it has not been confirmed and I would think it will(Officially) but I think it is say to say that they would have put alot of presure on them to ink this deal.

Re:It's about time. (4, Funny)

isomeme (177414) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742282)

I suppose transforming from "mob of looters" into "protection racket" is progress of a sort.

No, its not. (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742428)

I won't call you a troll, but you probably don't go to one of these schools.

I do.

I don't want to have to pay ANOTHER fee in my tuition, just so that other students can be coerced into buying music. I don't listen to RIAA produced crap. I don't want to pay for it. But it sounds like I will have to. :(

Re:No, its not. (0)

XryanX (775412) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742519)

Exactly.

On top of not wanting to pay for a music service that doesn't serve my musical interests, the said service won't run on my chosen operating system.

*Yawn* yes, the RIAA is bad. BUT, come on... (5, Interesting)

Bold Marauder (673130) | more than 10 years ago | (#9741989)

First off, let me make something crystal clear up-front. I in no way condone the way that the RIAA
has tried to unethically shape our legal landscape, much less the shadier tactics they've employed.

They're scum, no question about it.

However, the other side of the equation is almost pathological. While you have many honest people who simply want to defend their Fair Use rights, you also have a loud, vocal "I want I want I want" community who simply believes that it is eeeee-vil that they should ever have to pay for goods (cds) or services.

there has to be some sort of compromise between the two, and I honestly think this is a first, halting step in the right direction. I don't think much of napster, but I believe that if a university sponsored the use of a service such as Real's [real.com] Rhapsody service which allowed unlimited streaming (as opposed to a mandatory $X a song) of music, it would be a good compromise between the two posistions. People would have access to a large library of music, and the artists would be recieving compensation.

Hell, if nothing else, the sponsorship of such a program may well help to diminish any credible claims that the RIAA has to push through bizarre and draconian laws.

I applaud your trolling, sir, but (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742100)

your URL link to Sporks-R-Us is a dead giveaway. I suggest you change that to, say, Kuro5hin.org.

Re: sorry but you deal with the devil, you get... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742122)

BURNED!

Are you joking? Real? they are just as horrible! They got spyware in their players and they are just as bad as the RIAA.

Dealing with either Real (other than taking their shitty rm into something like mpg) or RIAA is just not cool.

The best thing to do when someone wants to blackmail you into an agreement, is to either:

A. Kill them (no more blackmail)
or B. Set them up for being taken down. Legal or otherwise. :)

Re:*Yawn* yes, the RIAA is bad. BUT, come on... (4, Interesting)

jb.hl.com (782137) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742179)

Yeah, I'm sick of everybody going on as if they deserve music for free. Like you, I hate the RIAA. However, I still think that artists should be rewarded for their efforts, no matter how little of my money actually gets into their hands-at least they get something. I feel a little better knowing that Coldplay/the White Stripes/The Verve/Radiohead got something for their troubles.

It pisses me off also how the RIAA is trying to crack down on file sharing. I would never have bought any of those CDs if I hadn't heard them before. Hell, I'd probably never be listening to Coldplay or Radiohead in the first place! I see the Internet as a try before you buy medium, where you can see what you're getting before you take the plunge and fully buy an album. I think that is what the RIAA is missing out on, and I'd like to see them try and dispute it.

It sort of pisses me off to see all these people going around saying how they have all of Artist X's CDs, when really they just have a bunch of MP3s burnt onto CD. You can hardly call yourself a fan if that's what you do.

Re:*Yawn* yes, the RIAA is bad. BUT, come on... (0, Flamebait)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742384)

We certainly DO deserve music for free. It's part of the deal that was made to RIAA members to allow them to profit off of works of creativity. My whining about a percieved mooching mentality all you've done to to play into the hands of the RIAA in their attempts to reshape the nature of copyright.

You are simply a Robber Baron's dupe.

Re:*Yawn* yes, the RIAA is bad. BUT, come on... (5, Insightful)

alstor (587931) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742314)

As a college student, my biggest problem with this new "system" is whether it creates a compulsory fee for the students. If the gag effect wasn't in place, I might not be as worried because I would know the details, but if this will be a mandatory fee, I have a serious problem. I feel that I have the right to determine what to spend my money on, especially in such a jaded area as this.

The other part of the program that bugs me is not being able to keep the songs after graduation without "buying" them.

Once their four years at school are over, the students are cut off from Napster and lose all the music they've download. That is unless they pay 99 cents per song or $10 per album to own a permanent download that can be burned onto CDs or MP3 players.

In my mind, if I have already paid a fee to buy as many songs as I wish, why should I be required to purchase the same thing later? Will I have to re-purchase the iBook I just paid for using an academic discount when I graduate as well? I sure hope not.

Re:*Yawn* yes, the RIAA is bad. BUT, come on... (1)

Bold Marauder (673130) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742356)

Great points. Those points are exactly why I was pushing Rhapsody specifically. You can just pay a flat fee (which, in the case of students, should be covered by the university -and not passed along) per month and you can just stream the songs. You don't "own" them (unless you arrange to pay to have them burned onto cd) with either service; but at least with Rhapsody you only pay the 6 bucks or whatever and you listen to whatever you want.

our daily allowance of Timothy, in disguise. (2, Insightful)

SuperBanana (662181) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742346)

While you have many honest people who simply want to defend their Fair Use rights, you also have a loud, vocal "I want I want I want" community who simply believes that it is eeeee-vil that they should ever have to pay for goods (cds) or services

You forgot the side that endlessly whines about the music industry. Folks, if you don't like the music industry, don't support it, but for fuck's sake, STOP WHINING ABOUT IT. This isn't "News for Music Buyers", and RIAA shit certainly is not "my rights online", or anyone else's.

I care about the fact that I'm unemployed, that my taxes are sky-high(I made below the poverty line a year or two ago, but because I was self-employed, the government wanted HALF of that) and currently funding a war I don't support. To be honest, I don't give a fucking rat's ass about the music industry, and I don't think anyone else here really does either, save the people who post "but if they just did THIS..." Like the rest of the media industry, slashdot greatly overstates the importance of the music industry. If some colleges are too stupid to sue the shit out of the RIAA for racketeering, I couldn't care less. Nevermind it's pure conjecture on both the part of the slash submitter and the register- which is why there hasn't been a lawsuit. Duh.

I had to double-check to see if the article wasn't really posted by Timothy, because it smacked of his boy-who-cried-wolf-about-our-rights-but-it-was-jus t-the-music-industry bullshit. Wake me up when there's a legitimate threat to my rights, or real technology news. Not teenage "I wanna swap music" teenage angst.

Re:*Yawn* yes, the RIAA is bad. BUT, come on... (1)

kindbud (90044) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742379)

... you also have a loud, vocal "I want I want I want" community who ... ... were a carefully developed demographic that the music vendors intentionally created and provoked to mass market hysteria with non-stop ads and hype. Gee, maybe they should have priced their product so it would be within the means of the consumer they targetted? Nah. That'd make too much sense. Much better to put a Lexus dealer in South Central, which is exactly what the music industry does by marketing to teens. No wonder their HID lamps get boosted all the time.

Re:*Yawn* yes, the RIAA is bad. BUT, come on... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742411)

It is the duty of goods creator to protect thier goods from theft. Assume there is a wal-mart in your town which complains about lots of stolen goods and your city puts $10 month tax which straight away goes to wal-mart? Would you like such a thing? if not, why napster/riaa? tomorrow, some book publishers will complain to university, next day, software publishers and so on. by accepting napster deal, university has already accepted that the moral standard of their student is low and they may be involved in other illegal acts too.

"Protection schemes?" (4, Funny)

haxor.dk (463614) | more than 10 years ago | (#9741993)

Sounds like mafia tactics to me.

"Pay up, and we'll make sure no unfortunate accidents happen to you..."

Re:"Protection schemes?" (1)

kaltkalt (620110) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742154)

Yes it does, and I recall that someone tried to sue the RIAA under RICO a while back, but I never heard the outcome.

Re:"Protection schemes?" (4, Funny)

Exiler (589908) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742390)

They woke up next to the severed heads of their favorite boy band.

Under Pressure (5, Funny)

Grayden (137336) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742003)

Perhaps the university officials received threats of being SNIPPED and GUNNED down...

Someone's gotta say it (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742006)

Oh Canada!

In other news... (2, Funny)

CmdrTostado (653672) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742008)

Six more US Universities and colleges have announced another round of tuition increases. Hope you're saving for your child's education, ....even if you don't have a child yet.

Re:In other news... (1)

cleojo42 (573624) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742058)

Yeah, too bad us poor college students can't opt out of the services we don't use at university. I would really love to opt out of the student activity fee. I can't remember the last time I was able to partake in something sponsored by the council. You still have to pay it if you are part time.

Engender? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742011)

Main Entry: engender
Pronunciation: in-'jen-d&r, en-
Function: verb
Inflected Form(s): engendered; engendering /-d(&-)ri[ng]/
Etymology: Middle English engendren, from Middle French engendrer, from Latin ingenerare, from in- + generare to generate
transitive senses
1 : BEGET, PROCREATE
2 : to cause to exist or to develop : PRODUCE
intransitive senses : to assume form : ORIGINATE

As if college prices weren't bad enough... (0, Redundant)

riptide_dot (759229) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742017)

From the article: "If Napster would be more forthcoming, we'd all know exactly how much this "service" is going to affect university prices.

Great, tuition at places like Cornell wasn't high enough [us.com] . Now they're going to charge MORE because I'll get to download music without being sued? Sign me up twice!

Re:As if college prices weren't bad enough... (1)

ZeroGee (796304) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742112)

Oh no! Another $30 per year (if you read the article) in order to download all the free music you want for four years?

It actually sounds like a pretty darn good deal to be a student there. Fast download speeds, no overbearing IT department threatening you with being kicked off the network -- all for a 0.1% increase in tuition.

Re:As if college prices weren't bad enough... (2, Interesting)

fishbowl (7759) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742183)

"Oh no! Another $30 per year (if you read the article) in order to download all the free music you want for four years?"

Only the music that *they* want you to hear, not all the music you want.

Re:As if college prices weren't bad enough... (1)

nosphalot (547806) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742198)

If thats how you feel, why don't we just add this to our federal taxes?

What about the students who don't like the product the RIAA produces, or perfer not to support them for what ever reason. And before you fire back, they can just go to another school, I'm sure this affects those who have already completed at least a year there.

Re:As if college prices weren't bad enough... (5, Interesting)

riptide_dot (759229) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742279)

Oh no! Another $30 per year (if you read the article) in order to download all the free music you want for four years?

Acutally, I did read the entire article:

"This is a nice service if holding onto to your tunes is not important. Once their four years at school are over, the students are cut off from Napster and lose all the music they've download. That is unless they pay 99 cents per song or $10 per album to own a permanent download that can be burned onto CDs or MP3 players.

Keep in mind too, that this charge applies to ALL students, not just those that want to download music. And what about those from other countries/cultures that won't find their particular tastes in music on Napster?

The total cost of this is yet to be determined. That's just the price these colleges agreed to for now - who knows what the RIAA will start charging them in a few years, or what will happen if their students find a way to circumvent the Napster, etc, etc, etc...

"Napster offers a unique blend of a name students recognize, a broad music library that appeals to every taste and community features that let you discover new music and share your favorites with friends...."

Ah, but you can only share them with friends that are also currently enrolled at another one of these universities...:)

Re:As if college prices weren't bad enough... (1)

Lehk228 (705449) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742364)

just wait for a ripper app that converts all the DRM'd files to vanilla flac

Re:As if college prices weren't bad enough... (1)

Warlok (89470) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742382)

As long as they don't convert them to vanilla ice, I'm good with that...

Re:As if college prices weren't bad enough... (1)

JohnFromCanada (789692) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742550)

"It actually sounds like a pretty darn good deal to be a student there."

It only sounds interesting if you spend time listening to a lot of music. I go to University and am sick of them including deals in the tuition simply because it works for a few people. If I am not going to use the service I shouldn't have to pay for it, end of story. How is it a good deal if I don't want to download any music?

OpEd a little off? (1)

Em Adespoton (792954) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742019)

Way to engender yourselves to your biggest customer base.

I never realised that university bureaucracy was their biggest customer base -- if you're arguing that it's bad from the average student's perspective, it isn't really such a bad thing.

From the perspective of anyone in the CS/Engineering/Communications/Law departments of course, it is. But then, because of the gag order, the universities can't discuss it, which kind of makes it hard to argue with them.

asdf (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742021)

asdf

WHY.... (3, Insightful)

TheDarkener (198348) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742029)

..Can't the RIAA, MPAA, and everyone else just realize that there is an efficient medium for distributing music, movies, and any other digital/converted to digital media, and WORK WITH IT? They're barking up a dying tree here. People will find better, more secure ways to transfer music/movies over the net, these associations need to embrace these technological advances and come up with an updated business model for them to profit off of.

Re:WHY.... (1)

pudding7 (584715) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742130)

www.movielink.com They're working on it.

Re:WHY.... (2, Informative)

Otter (3800) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742142)

Can't the RIAA, MPAA, and everyone else just realize that there is an efficient medium for distributing music, movies, and any other digital/converted to digital media, and WORK WITH IT?

Actually, that's precisely what's happening in this story, the submitter's furious ranting about "lapdogs" and "protection schemes" notwithstanding. As a fringe benefit, the universities' networks will return to pre-Napster (old Napster, obviously) levels of functionality.

Re:WHY.... (1)

tsg (262138) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742330)

..Can't the RIAA, MPAA, and everyone else just realize that there is an efficient medium for distributing music, movies, and any other digital/converted to digital media, and WORK WITH IT?

Because they have far too much invested in producing and shipping plastic disks.

Re:WHY.... (1)

TheDarkener (198348) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742546)

Because they have far too much invested in producing and shipping plastic disks.

Oh no, and how did they possibly get through the whole tape to CD evolution? They sure look like they're struggling now!

Mandatory payment? (2, Informative)

oostevo (736441) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742038)

Universities helping their students to see that paying for IP is a good thing is something almost no one can argue with, but I'm not thrilled with the way many universities handle students' 'payment'.

I remember another university that tried to have students pay a mandatory "MP3 Fee" with their tuition for access to Napster because they figured that they'd download music anyway. Needless to say, that wasn't very popular with the students there.

I sure hope these universities don't follow suit.

What would be a better program (4, Interesting)

foidulus (743482) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742039)

is if the RIAA would give students a choice in the matter, instead of forcing Napster down their throats(who knows, maybe someone up there really loves irony) ie you could give me:
a) a reduced Napster subscription price
b) a reduced price on iTunes songs or
c) a free "I None of these would have to be paid for from univerisity funds(I'm from Penn State, I still wonder where our mysterious funding comes from), it would give the users a choice, and the RIAA could still make boatloads of money.
Gah, people who think they have some sort of inate right to music piss me off, but not nearly as much as the RIAA....

Re:What would be a better program (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742458)

Absolutely. I am somewhat embarrassed to admit that I go to U. of Miami, one of the six schools named today... and despite the fact that I will be living off campus, and will be paying for my own internet service that (i assume) won't have the free napster access, part of my tuition will go to this scheme that I don't particularly agree with.

While I have gotten used to the fact that much of my tuition goes towards things I don't need and will never use (hell, I *have* to pay something like $250 a semester specifically for use of the wellness center, which I have used all of twice in two years... yeah, that was a good week), it's still crap that we were more or less forced into this as some sort of capitalistic protection plan.

I agree that a much better solution would be some sort of nationwide deal for college students... provide a college ID, get free access while you're in school, or 50% off downloads... whatever, something along those lines though. No bullying individual colleges into the deal, maybe even some choice in the matter - there are I don't know how many music stores out there, it'd be nice to pick a different one (in my case, one that isn't windows-only, since I am primarily a mac user). Of course, that isn't in their best interests... I'm sure we'll see a lot more universities signing up for this, as it isn't the best publicity when one of your students gets busted for pirating music.

Anyway, as a disclaimer, I am a music student whose source of income is and will go on to be music, and I am wholeheartedly against the approach the riaa has taken to fight music piracy.

Real nice network you got here... (5, Insightful)

bugnuts (94678) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742051)

Sure would hate to see anything happen to it!

RIAA just hit their highest sales, despite these mobster tactics.

lying [cnn.com] bastards. [wired.com]

Re:Real nice network you got here... (2, Interesting)

Kyosuke77 (783293) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742288)

"The authors concluded that file-sharing has a statistically insignificant impact on record sales."

Granted that the findings of that particular study are hotly debated, I still tend to believe it. As far as I've seen, many users of P2P networks use them like a preview service, then go out and buy the albums.

I can't help wondering, when are the RIAA folks going to get it through their thick heads that suing music fans is much more likely to hurt sales.

Then again, I'm Canadian and can download with impunity, so it doesn't affect me. It sure is fun to watch the madness, though.

sickening (1)

mastergoon (648848) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742062)

Why on earth would universities would never be doing this, were it not for that they are being blackmailed. Supplying their students with music is not supposed to be what their money goes to. Blackmail is illegal, is it not? Seems to be what the RIAA is doing here.

Everyone needs to stop bending over to the RIAA. Honestly, I think a vast majority of the people that download music do it for convienence. Even at the ridicoulus prices they charge, if they had simply adopted a scheme of using the internet to sell their product instead of trying to stop the internet from being involved, they would be doing well. DRM isn't really neccesary either, the people who are going to get it for free, are going to get it for free, one way or another. People have been swapping copies of music in real life forever, yet the industry still exists.

It's unfortunate that the current services, such as Apples music store, arent that great. They've got DRM, which is breakable, and doesnt bother me tooo much because the only place i want to play music is on my PC or perhaps in my car which currently requires burning it anyways, but also because they just don't have a great selection of music! Why can't they have stuff from the 60s, 70s and 80s, thats what really popular amongst me and my friends anyhow.

Take a hint, a business model based on lawsuits and blackmail is not a good one.

MUST-SEE THIS - PARODY OF BILL GATES (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742064)

http://www.linspire.com/RunLinspireFlash.php [linspire.com]
http://www.linspire.com/RunLinspireFlash.php

Re:MUST-SEE THIS - PARODY OF BILL GATES (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742106)

jesus christ, off topic but lmao

Re:MUST-SEE THIS - PARODY OF BILL GATES (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742353)

I wonder if they paid their fees to ASCAP and/or the copyright holders of the Doors' work.

All your Universities... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742067)

Students: What happen?
Universities: Somebody set up us the RIAA contract.
Universities: We just watch you.
Students: What!
Universities: Main screen turn on.
Students: It's You!!
RIAA: How are you thieving punks!!
RIAA: All your schools are belong to us.
RIAA: Your rights are on the way to destruction.
Students: What you say!!
RIAA: Your rights have no chance to survive make your time.
RIAA: HA HA HA HA!
RIAA: Your ass is mine
Students: You know what you doing.
RIAA: Landsharks, engage
Students: For great justice.

(Wonders how many time the same joke can be milked for.)

Re:All your Universities... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742229)

HAHAHAH I laughed - but then again - I still like "All your base are belong to us" jokes

I know someone at University of Miami. (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742072)

And while he'll be paying the costs of this, he certainly won't be getting any benefits from it, since he has a mac... which means, no napster...

I wonder exactly how much student outrage would have to happen before the universities break down and withdraw from the napstery thing...

I certainly would have thought more of CORNELL, of all places, at least...

Disapoointing to say the least (5, Insightful)

StateOfTheUnion (762194) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742074)

Why is the RIAA going after universities and "extorting" (ok maybe that's harsh . . ."pressuring") universities to grant a cumpulsory license to each student. What about the music student that's studying 16th century harpsicord? If this student doesn't want to listen to pop-garbage or even some of the better stuff in the napster library or if this person has a very trained ear, and they don't want/like to hear compressed music, then why is a portion of their tuition/fees going to napster for a servie that they don't want?

The RIAA is preying on the lawsuit fears of universities in an attempt to gain a captive market of students that are forced to have Napster whether they want it or not.

Re:Disapoointing to say the least (1)

Saeed al-Sahaf (665390) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742502)

What about the music student that's studying 16th century harpsicord?

Are you saying that classical music is not available over Napster? News to me... Are you saying that classical music students don't listen to pop? Hmmm... Next argument...

Streaming music is a good thing (2, Interesting)

ceswiedler (165311) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742083)

Personally, I love streaming music. My stereo at home is connected to my PC, which is always connected to the net. On Rhapsody I can play nearly every album I've ever owned or wanted to listen to, for a flat monthly fee.

The best thing about unlimited streaming is that I can listen to albums which I would probably never buy, or even take the time to borrow or copy. When someone says 'hey, listen to this band' I can check them out right away, for no extra money.

I believe you meant (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742086)

endear, not engender.

Started as a good idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742088)

In the beginning, the Napster fee was paid for by surplus at PSU IIRC (which I guess has to come from somewhere though), but at the rate these schools are signing on, it's only a matter of time before the Napster fee will be included in the tuition. As a recent grad, I would have been pissed if I had been forced to pay for Napster. However, while in college I worked for the Network and Telecom Services dept and as long as Universities show an attempt at regulating themselves (responding in a timely fashion to copyright violation requests) and have a policy that warns students of the illegality of downloading music, the RIAA has no room to sue. They can't sue your ISP if you DL music unless they are encouraging it, which I doubt any universities do.

Anticompetitive (4, Interesting)

catwh0re (540371) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742093)

Other music services should sue for anticompetitive behaviour, probably the source of the gag order on each contract.

Re:Anticompetitive (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742487)

It won't be an effective gag order. The finances of public educational instutions are matters of public record. You can get them, find out what they paid, do some math, and figure out the per student charge.

I'm not sure it's even really a gag order, the article mentioned Napster tilling OU not to publish the rates, not getting a court order saying they couldn't. There is a big difference.

If it comes here, I will do just that (grab the financials and publish the per student rate).

Microsoft Model? (1)

MonkeyDancer (797523) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742145)

This is starting to sound like the Microsoft model!

Re:Microsoft Model? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742178)

You're a fucking moron.

Re:Microsoft Model? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742283)

No he isn't, Microsoft is also charging universities a blanket fee so the students have access to M$'s software. I wouldn't go to such a university as I consider Microsoft an illegal buisness, but strangely they are allowed to do this....

Re:Microsoft Model? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742440)

I wouldn't go to such a university as I consider Microsoft an illegal buisness

OMFG You're a retard too aparently.

How is it . . . (3, Interesting)

vegetablespork (575101) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742146)

. . . that state universities and private, but tax-exempt, schools are able to keep these contracts secret?

Obviously NO ONE CARES *enough* (0, Troll)

greymond (539980) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742153)

"Great business model guys. Way to engender yourselves to your biggest customer base."

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA it is actually a GREAT business model when NO ONE in the country other than a few liberal-do-nothing-singers and power-posting-high-karma-slashdotters are the only ones who seem to give a rats ass.

That may be a bit of a troll statement there, but honestly, I aksed my cousin (18) who just bought a Britney Spears Album what she thought - and she shrugged and said she didn't care. I asked my coworker who just bought an OutKast album (33) and she replied that she buys CD's all the time and thinks downloading music should be citationable. I asked my friend (24) who just downloaded Modest Mouse's album and he said "yeah that's fucked up shit man - want a hit?"

As a society we are allowing a select few old ass neophytes decide on the laws of our country and VERY FEW are actually doing ANYTHING ABOUT IT.

So unless YOU are gonna get OFF YOUR ASS, and do something other than POST on slashdot about how you hate the RIAA then STFU and STOP COMPLAINING.

Maybe the answer should be solved using that amendment we almost have taken away...you know...the RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS!

Re:Obviously NO ONE CARES *enough* (2, Insightful)

Crinos (201310) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742450)

While I may not have used your choice phrasing, I have to agree with your sentiment. It seems to me that all that happens in these situations is a lot of grumbling, a lot of of agreeing with the grumbling, and then a big, fat, nothing, while the RIAA continues to expand its legal control over all things music related.

One thing that I'd like to add, is that the RIAA is a scapegoat. It was created as a shield so that certain unnamed companies who know that their consumers were going to be, for lack of a better term, pissed at their practices, could obfuscate themselves behind a handy acronym. While we're all having a giant tirade about how evil said organization is, we still go out and purchase products from these companies; they have done an absolutely phenomenal job in seperating thier legal heinousity* from their corporate image.

Just something to think about the next time you're bashing Xbox in favor of playstation.

*Yes, I made this word up.

Re:Obviously NO ONE CARES *enough* (1)

DM9290 (797337) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742501)

"So unless YOU are gonna get OFF YOUR ASS, and do something other than POST on slashdot about how you hate the RIAA then STFU and STOP COMPLAINING."

Perhaps you should follow your own advice. Unless you are going to do something about the complainers then STFU yourself and STOP COMPLAINING about the fact that other people are complaining.

Complaining is "doing something". It may not be doing much, but it is better than doing nothing.

Not everyone has the means, motivitation or bravery to take direct political action but taking the time to complain is a lot better than just standing by as a silent witness to something you disapprove of.

dol7 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742193)

MAKES ME SI*CK JuST

Business Ethics Alive and Well (5, Insightful)

Saeed al-Sahaf (665390) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742213)

Great business model

It's a terrific business model, what are you talking about? You think they don't understand that it's an implied threat? Why else would a university bite? Of course they know it's a threat, and they don't care if you think it's sleazy, what they do care about is how much of a threat the universities think it is. Damn right it's a threat, do you think anyone would pay them otherwise? It's a fine business model in a world where "business ethics" is not about "ethics" but what you can legally get away with.

Would the music industry actaully win? (3, Insightful)

StateOfTheUnion (762194) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742215)

WOuld the music industry actually be able to win a lawsuit against a university? I know that defending the university against a lawsuit is expensive and I know that universities have reputations to protect but . . . .

If a consortion of universities got together and fought this RIAA pressure would they be able to win? Remember the RIAA has never successfully prosecuted someone for offering music or providing network bandwidth unless this party had a commercial interest in the activity e.g. selling copies rather than sharing with friends (this is to the best of my knowledge). The black and white of the copyright laws say that the person making the copies is the one liable . . . wouldn't this be individual students? And not the university.

For example a public library is not liable for copyright infringement if someone photocopies a whole book on their photocopy machine. The person making the copies is the legally responsible party. This is exactly why photocopiers are now mostly self service in libraries (and even Kinkos). Because then the owner of the machine is not liable . . . wouldn't this work for universities? The owner of the machine (in this case the network) would not be liable for the actions of the people that used the machine (the individuals that are copying the music). Thus individual students would have to be prosecuted, not the university.

Assuming all this is true, I would hope that some university would stand up and fight the RIAA rather than rolling over and becoming the RIAA's B****.

Re:Would the music industry actaully win? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742257)

They will NOT get together and fight the RIAA...

Because Good is dumb.

Re:Would the music industry actaully win? (3, Insightful)

Saeed al-Sahaf (665390) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742547)

WOuld the music industry actually be able to win a lawsuit against a university? I know that defending the university against a lawsuit is expensive and I know that universities have reputations to protect but . . . .

You answer your own question. It has nothing to do with if they can win the suite, it has to do with how much the suite would cost the university to win. This is what extortion is about.

More news from Georgia Tech (4, Interesting)

GillBates0 (664202) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742235)

Here's an article I submitted last month regarding RIAA activities at Georgia Tech. Some useful links and information here:

2004-06-11 01:49:15 RIAA subpoenas Georgia Tech for student names

According to Georgia Tech's [gatech.edu] college paper, the Technique [gatech.edu] , nine Tech students are among the victims [nique.net] of the RIAA's last round of lawsuits [slashdot.org] . The RIAA has subpoenaed the Office of Information Technology (OIT) [gatech.edu] to release the identities of individuals who were using computers at specific network addresses identified as being the sources of large amounts of file sharing. Tech has indicated they intend to comply with the subpoenas. According to Randy Nordin, Tech's chief legal advisor, the RIAA has asked that he tell the students to contact their attorney to see if an out of court settlement can be reached. The deadline to comply was June 2. In the past, violation of the school's Computer and Network Usage Policy [gatech.edu] , would've resulted in disabling the student's Internet access until the student matter was sorted out with the OIT or the Dean of Student's office.

Please stop whinning... (0, Troll)

Eric Damron (553630) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742247)

" It's lucky for Napster that the RIAA picked it as a henchman. Students can now download as many songs as they like while enrolled at a university. This is a nice service if holding onto to your tunes is not important. Once their four years at school are over, the students are cut off from Napster and lose all the music they've download. That is unless they pay 99 cents per song or $10 per album to own a permanent download that can be burned onto CDs or MP3 players."

It seems to me that a lot of people won't settle for any thing less than free-as-in-beer music downloads. The article goes out of its way to vilify the RIIA and Napster.

Students get to download all they want and if they like a song enough to want to keep it permanently they pay less than a buck! I don't like the RIIA any better than anyone else but that's a good deal!

It seems to me that we keep talking about changing the way music is distributed but when a way is provided it just isn't good enough. Let's be fair. If this what the RIIA should do then what?

Re:Please stop whinning... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742537)

First of all, "whining" has two N's.

Secondly, the problem is not that universities are offering this service to students. It's that students PAY FOR THE SERVICE and may or may not find it worth trying out.

I have no doubt that there are some students who will like this service and will get their money's worth out of it. But I also know that there will be students who either 1) can use the service but don't find it useful or 2) can't use the service at all, who pay for it anyway.

Is the RIAA making universities do this? I don't know for certain (it's in the terms of the secret agreements), but it's likely. The RIAA gets more cash for the whole student body than just the music-downloading Windows-using student body.

Personally, I would have no interest in this program, nor would I be capable of taking advantage of this program if I did want to, therefore I would not want to pay for it. How is that whining?

Napster isn't Napster anymore. (2, Interesting)

thedarb (181754) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742260)

Can we please dub the new "Napster" as something else? This isn't the original / real napster, this is big biz cashing in on an old popular (and more respectable) name. At least call them "Napster II" or something. Let's not let them tarnish a once noble name.

Re:Napster isn't Napster anymore. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742400)

How about Netraps?

Article Blurb (0, Offtopic)

Erwos (553607) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742273)

I found the article blurb to be obnoxious as hell. How about just showing us the link, briefly saying (in a non-biased way) what it says, and then letting _us_ make the decision on how to view it?

Don't editorialize in the blurb. If you have a fucking editorial, submit it to your local paper. I care about the news, not your political views.

-Erwos

Re:Article Blurb (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742475)

I agree with Erwos. I also can't believe this is considered Offtopic, since it pertains to the story, as reported. Spelling mistakes in the blubs aren't Offtopic.

Wtf do the universities have to do with this? (5, Insightful)

zalle (637380) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742348)

I find it ridiculous that the universities themselves are paying anything to the scumbags. How can anyone even consider the possibility that random schools have anything to do with their students actions, much less have legal responsibility for those actions? Even more amazing is the fact that the universities are making any kinds of contracts for the students. Back here in Europe, their purpose is to provide education, but I guess it's pretty much different in the US, where they are more of a kindergarten than a place of research and study.

What good are customers who steal your product? (1)

ednopantz (467288) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742350)

Way to engender yourselves to your biggest customer base.
Appalling ignorance of the English language aside, what good are customers who steal your product? Forget them and market to their parents.
No doubt some latter day Robin Hood will soon explain that it isn't stealing, it is just taking without asking.

Schools Not To Apply At (2, Interesting)

fire-eyes (522894) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742355)

Well, I'll have to look at it this way: Schools that I will never apply to or allow my kids to. Schools shouldn't be entering into such rediculous agreements, what does this teach the students...

Streaming = Downloading? (4, Insightful)

flinxmeister (601654) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742358)

So how long until someone writes a program to just save all the streamed music for burnination to CD or use in portables and laptops? Congratulations RIAA! That CD in Sally Student's SUV just net'ed you....I mean the artist....less than 1 cent!

Re:Streaming = Downloading? (2, Informative)

LesPaul75 (571752) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742534)

There are already lots of tools out there to do this. Most of the freeware MP3 players support it. The MP3 format is designed for streaming... In fact, streaming audio stations, like the ones on Shoutcast, are using MP3 format directly. Any player, including WinAmp, could simply save the streamed data directly to disk. They just disable that feature in WinAmp (as an attempt to stay out of the RIAA's crosshairs, I'm guessing).

what about foreigners? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742359)

Many universities have 50% student foreigners who have very little interest in american music offered by riaa. why should they pay tax.

Also what about non-riaa labels? now that students will feel it is their rights to download anything (not just napster), they will download songs from non-napster sites too (to play on iPod etc). this will open up university to more potential lawsuits.

Mafia (1)

stewart.hector (87816) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742373)

The RIAA are no better than the Mafia.

Unfortunately, due to corrupt US senators, RIAA bullying tatics won't end soon - there will only be more laws to support the recording criminals.. especially when RIAA buy them.

Thank God I can download music for free... being in Canada (It is *legal* to download music here).

Bye bye alumni donation (5, Interesting)

poot_rootbeer (188613) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742374)


I'm an alumnus of one of the universities mentioned, and I'm writing up a letter to be sent to the President and Board of Trustees. It will express my disappointment in their capitulation to RIAA pressure and negligent misuse of funds, and let them know that as long as this deal is in place, the university will no longer be getting any alumni support from myself, and I will encourage my fellow alumni to do the same.

Napster has no legitimate educational purpose. They can go ahead and waste someone else's money (read: the current student body's) on this worthless and unjustifiable service, but I can make sure they will not be wasting my money on it.

I thought it was funny (1)

gelfling (6534) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742398)

One of the leaders before Fahrenheit 9-11 was for the Metallica moive. You know, the guys who sued their own fan base for music sharing.

I wonder if anyone else appreciated the wonderful irony of that.

$3 isn't bad (1)

programic (139404) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742453)

I hear a lot of complaints about the tactics the RIAA is using (yes, they are very shady), but $3 isn't bad if that's what it really comes down to.

I know it is probably a violation of their TOS, but if $3 gets me access to a decent catalog, I am more than willing to do what it takes to convert the tracks I download into mp3 or whatever.

I can't imagine it will take that long for the community to figure out how to do that. I mean $36 is the cost of between 2 and 3 CDs.

This will totally affect student employment! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9742493)

As we all know, finding employment these days doesn't have anything to do with how smart you are or how much you like what you do, it all boils down to the interview, and how much bullshit you can dish out. It also has to do with how much cock you can take 'back there', and this is where an anopractor can help you.

What is an anopractor?
In 1897, BJ Buttfuck discovered that by stretching his anus before an interview, he was able to take three cocks more than before. Since this is a "man do man" world we live in, this immediately led to a promotion and a new horseless carriage. Modern anopractic was born.

The anopractor is a highly skilled professional that can take any anus and make it into an 'employment grade' anus. By manipulating the anus with his hands, the anopractor can make your anus fit a #4 Del Monte pineapple sideways, with the leaves still on!

Nothing beats a stretched anus for any interview situation. When your future employer sees your anus and thinks "What a cum bucket! He's hired!", you'll know that anopractic has helped YOU.

Just keep it up (2, Interesting)

nanojath (265940) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742529)

Anybody who has an inkling of interest in tinkering with the possibilities of alternative distribution of media should be thrilled like this. In a few months I'll be launching my first experiment in home-brew DIY music downloading and I'm so thrilled the RIAA will continue to give me regular opportunities to market it by reminding everyone just how stupid and corrupt the current "market" is.

The new storefront (1)

wardk (3037) | more than 10 years ago | (#9742541)

Nice, our Universities are volunteering to become kiosks for dealing in shitty music.

So I guess the next step is to have class presentations be preceeded by an RIAA commercial?

Maybe a pre-requisite to any degree will be "Music Consumer 101". The class lab fee could be $18.99 and their pick of a CD by any artist the RIAA couldn't dump on Washington State libraries as payment for the price-fixing scam.
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