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US Judge Strikes Down Bootleg Law

CowboyNeal posted more than 10 years ago | from the soundboards-and-dats dept.

The Courts 312

lee writes "BBC News reports briefly on a federal judge declaring a 10-year-old anti-bootlegging law unconstitutional, because it sets no limits on the length of copyright of live performances, and grants "seemingly perpetual protection" to copyright holders."

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GREASED UP YODA DOLL NOW SHOVED INTO ORBIT! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349055)







Ground Control to Yoda Doll
Ground Control to Yoda Doll
Take your ass grease pills and put your helmet on
Ground Control to Yoda Doll
Commencing countdown, engines on
Check ignition and may God's love shove up you
Ten, Nine, Eight, Seven, Six, Five, Four, Three, Two, One, Shove Up
This is Ground Control to Yoda Doll
You've really made the grade
And the papers want to know whose butts you tear
Now it's time to leave the suppository if you dare
"This is Yoda Doll to Ground Control
I'm stepping through the door
And I'm stinking in a most peculiar way
And the ass look very different today
For here am I sitting in an ass can
Far inside the butt
My face is turning blue
And there's nothing I can do
Though I'm past one hundred thousand bowels
I'm feeling very still
And I think my buttship knows which way to go
Tell my wife I ream her very much, she knows"
Ground Control to Yoda Doll
Your circuit's dead, there's something wrong
Can you hear me, Yoda Doll?
Can you hear me, Yoda Doll?
Can you hear me, Yoda Doll?
Can you....
"Here am I floating in my ass can
Far inside his Moon
My face is turning blue
And there's nothing I can do."







This is going to get overturned in a heartbeat. (5, Insightful)

DrJonesAC2 (652108) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349059)

There is NO FRIGGIN WAY this is going to stand. The RIAA and MPAA will see to that. $$$

Re:This is going to get overturned in a heartbeat. (2, Interesting)

anonieuweling (536832) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349080)

HMmm. Too bad the $$$-based lobby is listed to too much, in the USA. Can anybody tell me what the years _before_ my puberty were like w.r.t. legislation in global context? What about (c), trade, patents, money(laundring), privacy, etc? The past few years look SO bad so I want to check if this is a trend or a change

Re:This is going to get overturned in a heartbeat. (3, Insightful)

The Clockwork Troll (655321) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349130)

They were largely the same except the Internet wasn't around to keep everyone apprised of all the corporations' shady dealings, so it was easier for crap like this to get perpetrated.

Duh, they were *selling* the recordings... (2, Interesting)

turnstyle (588788) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349095)

Isn't it worth noting that this was a *record dealer* and was *selling* unauthorized copies of the shows.

What, that's now ok too?

Re:Duh, they were *selling* the recordings... (5, Insightful)

ImaLamer (260199) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349136)

It's the law that is found unconstitutional.

Just because the law is wrong doesn't mean the court endorses the crime. Take Miranda vs. Arizona [findlaw.com] . Even though the rapist is freed, and precedent is set, the court isn't saying it's okay to rape someone.

Re:Duh, they were *selling* the recordings... (5, Informative)

bullitB (447519) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349295)

Just for completeness....

Ernesto Miranda was not freed. He was re-tried (after being read his rights), convicted, and sentenced to 11 years in prison.

In one of the lesser-known ironies of the century, Miranda was also stabbed to death while on parole. His likely killer was released because he invoked his right to remain silent.

Re:Duh, they were *selling* the recordings... (1, Insightful)

turnstyle (588788) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349298)

"Even though the rapist is freed, and precedent is set, the court isn't saying it's okay to rape someone."

To follow your analogy, would you then consider profiting by selling unauthorized shows to be such a "rape"? (obviously that's too strong a word, and I'm sure neither of us mean to equate it that way)

It seems to me that the prevailing sentiment (like the parent post) sees everything in a "Fuck the RIAA" kind of way -- but if the artist is being ripped off, is that something to cheer?

You're an idiot. (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349448)

If you can't grasp subtleties like the fact that the constitutionality of a law is independent of the ethics of what the law prohibits, then you shouldn't be commenting on it. Dumbass.

Re:This is going to get overturned in a heartbeat. (3, Funny)

bechthros (714240) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349168)

I agree. Have fun taking this one all the way to the Rehnquist/Scalia Supreme Court.

Re:This is going to get overturned in a heartbeat. (1)

rokzy (687636) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349189)

"If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine..."

or.... not.

Re:This is going to get overturned in a heartbeat. (1)

Linux is shit (813965) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349244)

I think this discussion begs the question of whether it's a good thing or not that copyrights last for seemingly indefinite amounts of time. Surely if you've come up with something yourself, you deserve rights over it forever? Why should copyrighted works be released unless the owner wants it?

Re:This is going to get overturned in a heartbeat. (1)

cwsulliv (522390) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349389)

"There is NO FRIGGIN WAY this is going to stand. The RIAA and MPAA will see to that. $$$"

It will likely be overturned on the grounds that the original recording was illegal. Therefore the constitutional requirement that copyright protection (accorded to legally published works) be granted only for a limited time does not apply.

BBC (1)

ThisNukes4u (752508) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349062)

A BBC article on a U.S. court ruling? Maybe you could include a link to a U.S. based news source to balance that out.

Re:BBC (5, Insightful)

rusty0101 (565565) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349075)

New here arn't you...

The US press considers judgements that are not in favor of copyright holders to not be news. (At least all together too frequently.)

Rusty

"Managed" news in the US? The hell you say! (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349170)

Yeah, like it wasn't newsworthy when people egged Bush's limo during the inauguration procession back in 2001-- something which had never happened before to any President during their inauguration.

I still can't believe that the first time I saw that footage or even heard that it happened was when I saw Fahrenheit 9/11.

In light of that, it won't surprise me at all if this ruling doesn't merit a mention by any big-media news outlet.

Right (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349346)

Like these [google.com] ?

Re:BBC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349360)

The US press considers judgements that are not in favor of copyright holders to not be news.

The US has precious little "press" these days - it has been almost entirely replaced by "press releases" and the US media considers anything that doesn't use the word "terrorist" in every other sentence or aid the agenda of neo-cons and/or globalization not newsworthy these days.

Re:BBC (5, Insightful)

glpierce (731733) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349097)

I've noticed that the BBC does a much better job on this type of thing than the American media. American news sources generally devote page 1 space to death and scandal, while the Beeb gets into the American court rulings related to personal liberty and freedoms, etc. I live in the 'States, but get more news from the BBC than anywhere else. If you care more about court rulings than manufactured "scandals" or political doublespeak, you don't have much choice. It's not necessarily the media's fault, rather it just reflects the local readership/viewership interests.

Re:BBC (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349137)

Additionally, BBC News 24 shows "The news Americans get" with Peter Jennings.

Re:BBC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349164)

No ... it's the media's fault. Don't let them duck out from the responsibilities they accepted in exchange for for the freedoms they've been given. The reason we have freedom of the press in this country isn't so that people can be informed of issues that they find entertaining, but that they can be made of aware of issues that are actually important that they would have no other way of finding out about. The media in the U.S. is and has been doing a disservice to it's customers for decades now, and except in rare cases, is at best an extension of the entertainment business and at worst just another arm of the government.

Re:BBC (4, Informative)

bechthros (714240) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349251)

Amen to that. And we have good old deregulation to thank for it. The media would never have rolled over to the extent that they have for Bush even as recently as 15-20 years ago. The fewer players there have become, the worse the content has gotten. This is a clearly observable trend across many media, in many disparate cases. From ClearChannel radio stations that are a uniform shade of puke to the cable giant Viacom, which owns so many things on cable that if they don't want a story run, it won't be run... IE the Reagan thing on CBS, which Viacom owns...

The bottom line is, in a democracy there's no good reason for a very few major media players to own the game. A free and *responsible* press, along with good education, is something without which a democracy cannot function. Media consolidation, and the rampant homogeniety and misinformation it engenders time and time again, are probably the biggest internal threat to American democracy today.

On the plus side, there's always blogs...

Re:BBC (3, Insightful)

rokzy (687636) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349217)

ah, the benefits of a not-for-profit information service :-)

not wanting to come across as troll, but as a UK citizen the BBC is one of the things that makes me proud and optimistic. the idea of mixing facts and profits just seems like a really Bad Idea(tm) to be avoided as much as possible.

Re:BBC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349226)

The BBC news is good for unbiased American news, and American news is good for unbiased Euro/British news.

Re:BBC (1)

SunPin (596554) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349274)

Don't forget the best features of American media such as:

--Fabricated stories.
--Fabricated quotes.
--Fabricated people.
--Poor grammar.
--Inexcusable spelling errors.

Since I haven't gotten past these problems, it's hard to take a position on this "death & scandal" subject matter that you speak of.

Re:BBC (2, Funny)

dcsmith (137996) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349373)

Since I haven't gotten past these problems, it's hard to take a position on this "death & scandal" subject matter that you speak of.

If you're going to get your panties in a wad over grammar and spelling, perhaps its worth pointing out that you should have said "...subject matter of which you speak." Not that I disagree with you, but really...

Here's Reuters... (3, Informative)

turnstyle (588788) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349117)

Here's Reuters [reuters.com]

Re:BBC (3, Insightful)

Grey Tomorrow (722221) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349124)

Maybe you'd like to be the one to try to find the American news source indicating significant change in America. Whoops my bad, when it comes to American news everyone is too concerned over the weather in Florida, what was happening with Kobe, whether Michael was touching some kid at his ranch, or some other crap to actually pay attention to anything of importance like that. The BBC was offering some of the best news coverage of shit going down in Iraq. Quality journalism doesn't change just cause the news people don't have alegiance to your specific country.

NY Post (3, Informative)

ari_j (90255) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349154)

Sure, here's the New York Post's article [nypost.com] .

Or did you want a legitimate source? Try USA Today [usatoday.com] .

Re:NY Post (2, Funny)

ThatsNotFunny (775189) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349202)

Great... The Post or USA Today. Nice choice. It's like asking a man with peanut allergies if he'd prefer smooth or chunky.

Re:NY Post (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349364)

Sig comment.
That doesn't really work because "too big" suggests that the glass cannot be filled which is another way of saying it's half empty.
Maybe the glass has just enough space left to carry upstairs to the computer room without spilling.

Re:BBC (3, Funny)

ImaLamer (260199) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349256)

It would be in the U.S. news but the findings were immediatly copyrighted and any posting of the results are illegal and any news agencies reporting on this story will be fined $500,000.

No news on whether BBC executives will be extradited due to their crimes against humanity or not. The RIAA has already donated lawyers to the judge involved saying that his rights to hold intellectual property are being violated. WIPO [wipo.int] is also on the case.

Re:BBC (1)

whovian (107062) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349340)

http://news.google.com/news?hl=en&ned=us&q=bootleg &btnG=Search+News

there is no such thing as perpetual motion (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349063)

ff

Please (1)

superpulpsicle (533373) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349070)

The judges themselves have made copies. They probably didn't sell it on the street. But the concept of copy and backup is just too much of a thin line with boot legging.

Re:Please (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349106)

What's a backup? I'm interested in reading your definition, because none I can think of apply to live performances.

Re:Please (2, Funny)

uberdave (526529) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349371)

Backup: (n) The three girls off to the side of the stage who sway to the music, and sing "Doo-wap Ah!" whilst the main vocalist is singing about a boy meeting a girl under the light of a full moon.

Re:Please (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349415)

Very funny. You know what I meant :)

Longer Article here with links (5, Informative)

VinceWuzHere (733075) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349072)

Copy of an expanded version of the story with informative links (at bottom) from . [newsday.com]

By ERIN McCLAM

Associated Press Writer

September 24, 2004, 8:27 PM EDT

NEW YORK -- A federal judge Friday struck down a 1994 law banning the sale of bootleg recordings of live music, ruling the law unfairly grants "seemingly perpetual protection" to the original performances.

U.S. District Judge Harold Baer Jr. dismissed a federal indictment of Jean Martignon, who runs a Manhattan mail-order and Internet business that sells bootleg recordings.

Baer found the bootleg law was written by Congress in the spirit of federal copyright law, which protects writing for a fixed period of time _ typically for the life of the author and 70 years after the author's death.

But the judge said the bootleg law, which was passed "primarily to cloak artists with copyright protection," could not stand because it places no time limit on the ban.

Baer also noted that copyright law protects "fixed" works _ such as books or recorded music releases _ while bootlegs, by definition, are of live performances.

A federal grand jury indicted Martignon in October 2003 for selling "unauthorized recordings of live performances by certain musical artists through his business."

The business, Midnight Records, once had a store in Manhattan but now operates solely by mail and Internet. It sells hundreds of recordings, specializing in rock artists, from the Beatles to Led Zeppelin.

An e-mail message to Martignon from The Associated Press was not immediately returned Friday, and a phone number could not immediately be located.

Megan Gaffney, a spokeswoman for the Manhattan U.S. attorney, said federal prosecutors were "reviewing the decision and will evaluate what steps ought to be taken going forward."

The Recording Industry Association of America, a trade group that fights piracy and bootlegging, also disagreed with the ruling.

The decision "stands in marked contrast to existing law and prior decisions that have determined that Congress was well within its constitutional authority to adopt legislation that prevented trafficking in copies of unauthorized recordings of live performances," said Jonathan Lamy, a spokesman for the RIAA.

The bootleg law calls for prison terms of up to five years for first offenders and 10 years for second offenders, plus fines. It requires courts to order the destruction of any bootlegs created in violation of the law.

The law did not apply to piracy, which is the unauthorized copying or sale of recorded music, such as albums.

On the Net:

Midnight Records: http://www.midnightrecords.com

Bootleg law: http://www4.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/2319A.html

Copyright © 2004, The Associated Press

Offtopic (4, Funny)

pjt33 (739471) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349112)

Did you deliberately adjust the length of that post? My preferences are set to clip long posts at 2k, and clipped it at
The Recording Industry Ass
I thought for a second that you were quoting an article from The Register.

'think about your breathing' (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349141)

Didn't see that in the article.

Way to go, Asshat! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349193)

Seems when your fat, sweaty fingers were busy copying that article, you didn't (couldn't?) read the last line:

> Copyright © 2004, The Associated Press

For those who are contemplating doing the same thing and risking the threat of civil proscecution, you better learn something about copyrights [templetons.com] first.

If everybody (4, Interesting)

red_kola (754890) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349076)

just took the Grateful Dead's enlightened position then there wouldn't be a problem.

I hate the Grateful Dead, but their attitude to the recording and distribution of their live performances is spot on!

Re:If everybody (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349147)

why does everyone hate the Grateful Dead?

please tell me youve heard more of their songs than just "Casey Jones"

The Dead are Dead and suck. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349228)

I have heard quite a bit of Greatful Dead's music, and I still think they suck ass! So N'yah!

Re:The Dead are Dead and suck. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349254)

fair 'nuff. Most people ive talked to about this cant even name one of their songs, besides that "driving that train high on cocaine song"

I've even had a few people tell me that they thought GD was heavy metal LOL

Re:The Dead are Dead and suck. (0, Offtopic)

Pharmboy (216950) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349299)

Just the idea of barefoot people who don't bathe trying to sell you cheese sandwiches in the parking lot, to raise money to get to the next show, is enough to gag me. Jesus, you can love music and STILL have proper hygiene. Deadheads were just plain nasty, at least the one's I knew.

Re:The Dead are Dead and suck. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349330)

and the quality of their fans determines the quality of their music in what way?

Im no fan of beer-drinking trailer trash, but im not going to use that to imply that all NASCAR drivers are unskilled drivers.

Re:The Dead are Dead and suck. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349368)

I agree because Ive met black people once, they were crack whores and drug dealers.
Man, that is one nasty race.

Oh and those jews I met, big nosed and money hungry. Man they were plain nasty.

Oh and what about those porto......

and so on and so on.

bootleg (4, Funny)

sgtron (35704) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349091)

Maybe I'm too old, but I thought this was going to be an article about alcohol.

Re:bootleg (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349334)

sadly, I'd have to say I thought the same. Am i realy that old? Please no... I'm only 24... I should still be 'hip'.

Is it possible? (5, Funny)

ravenspear (756059) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349108)

A sensible ruling on copyright terms?

Dear Mr. Bainwol,

I apologize for the unpleasant news you are probably reading this morning. We thought we had this one in the bag, but the opposing side actually made better use of solid facts and accurate analysis than we anticipated. I estimate more obfuscation will be needed to win on appeal. We will do our best though.

Sincerely yours,
Your Well Paid Lobbyist

Re:Is it possible? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349369)

Have no fear, Judge Scalia to the rescue!

Confused; could use some answers... (0, Flamebait)

MedHead (795006) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349114)

First, I would like to know why people would want to listen to live performances. Most often these are songs sung on tour, with the singer half dead from exhaustion. On top of that, acoustics are pretty bad as well! There's also the problem with many singers not being all that great of singers, and peforming pretty poorly outside the studio, but that's not true for every singer.

Second, are most bootlegs recordings from the mic mix, or from the crowd? If it was the crowd, I ask again, why would anyone want these things?

Personally, I don't know why live recordings are sold. I don't think they're worth the money.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (1)

Lisandro (799651) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349152)

The only "live" performances i own are some Unplugged concerts (namely: Clapton, Nirvana and Alice In Chains) - it's a good chance to listen how a song is converted from one style to another.

As for pure live recordings, either bootleged or offical ones, i agree. 90% are not worth the trouble.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (2, Informative)

Lank (19922) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349167)

Usually, if you slip the guy at the mix board a $20 or so, he'll let you hook up a minidisc recorder. Go home, convert the tracks to MP3, and boom - a decent live recording for about the price of a CD.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (2, Interesting)

awing0 (545366) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349176)

I agree with you in general, the quality of live recordings leaves a lot to be desired. However, I hold on to some live recordings because bands sometimes play unreleased songs, do covers, and add quirks into existing songs. Also, some up and coming bands only have live recordings of their songs, having not been able to afford studio time yet. Of course, the up and coming bands usually encourage free distribution of their music.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (5, Insightful)

chuckychesthair (576920) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349178)

Not all artists are prefab performers. Some are musicians, actually. There are plenty of artists I like that regularly completely overhaul the arrangements of songs, or play songs they haven't released yet, or play covers that you simply cannot hear studio versions of.

Besides, it also happens that the studio mix simply isn't very good but that live recordings sound astounding.

It all comes down to preference, live recordings can add excitement, overview of an artists growth and they can show you songs in a different light, as live artists are prone to let a song breath some more, giving it the room to blossom that simply isn't always possible in studio recordings!

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349188)

You obviously aren't much of a music fan.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (1)

Xerxes2695 (706503) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349201)

I disagree. Legitimate live recordings that are taken directly from the mixer feed can be high quality, and truly shine with bands that use improvisation and acoustic or wind instruments. What comes to mind is Jethro Tull's "Living in the Past". I bought this not knowing it was a live recording, and was plesently suprised. It's higher quality than some of the studio recordings I own. Bootleg recordings, however, tend to be from the crowd and of horrible quality as the parent noted.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349204)

well, ya see, in the past, at concerts, you would get more than just the musicians dancing around to pre-recorded crapola.

Good musicians never play the same song the same way twice, and so at a live performance, you might have heard a very different version of the songs than what you'd hear on the radio.

Also, many times live concerts would feature guest musicians, and many times you would hear duets, or sit-ins that you would never hear in studio recordings.

Of course, nowadays, a concert means nothing more than live dancers & really loud speakers. But back in the day, there was actually a reason to go see your favorite bands live, and record it, even if the sound quality sucked.

Personally, I'd much rather listen to some really soulful music recorded on a sears-roebuck cassette recorder than soulless crapola recorded in a million-dollar studio. Sound quality isnt NEAR as important as music quality.

but thats just me.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (5, Interesting)

One Childish N00b (780549) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349205)

Many people want recordings of live performances they've been to, just as a souvenir, kinda like you might buy a T-shirt there, too, or any other article of merchandise. Other people will just buy bootlegs of live performances of certain bands because that makes them more 'hardcore' than fans who just buy the albums in the shops. Thirdly, some bands perform songs live that will never see the light of day on an official album, and so bootlegs are the only way to hear them.

Secondly, I find most bootlegs are recorded off the soundboard and not some guy with a casette player in the crowd - maybe I just like lenient bands or perhaps I've just been lucky - Bootlegs recorded from the crowd are notoriously awful.

I think bootlegs are really only for the hardcore fans - regular people won't want them or wont have the will to seek them out. But if you're a dedicated fan, and owning everything there is to possibly own to do with your favourite band is important to you, then a good bootleg of a great performance is more than worth the money.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (2)

garethw (584688) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349243)

Personal preference, I guess.

I love live music - IMHO, it's what music is supposed to be. It's organic, spontaneous and human. I really enjoy hearing my favourite bands as they translate their material to a live setting, where they have to deal with the fact that whereas their album was recorded to 64 tracks, they are now just 3 or 4 guys with their instruments, trying to recreate the complexity and richness of a modern studio production.

A lot of bands ad-lib, insert fragments of other songs into their own, change their riffs around, banter with the crowd. Un-edited live recordings have a kind of personality.

Boots can be straight from the mixing desk, or they can be recorded from the crowd. But don't dimiss audience recordings until you've heard a really good one - you'd be amazed at what people can capture with highly directional microphones pointed at the PA system speakers. And people have been able to do good audience sound recordings for longer than I'd have guessed. For example, there's a recording of U2 playing on a Mississippi riverboat outside of New Orleans as far back as 1982, and it sounds awesome. It's raw, it's energetic, and the sounds capture is very crisp.

I guess some folks just love the whole live aspect of music. I'm one of them, but YMMV.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349249)

you havent heard the REAL bootlegs (top line mic rigs, DAT etc)

we are not talking about someone with a $20 mic and a minidisc recorder.

The atmosphere of those concert show through on a proper tape. (checkout bt.etree.org for some excellent legal live recordings)

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (1)

Pharmboy (216950) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349266)

If you ever saw Stevie Ray Vaugn live in concert, you would understand why. He was significantly better live than on tape. Some music has a more raw, edge to it live, with more energy. This is very common for Blues, but lots of music sounds better live, mistakes and all. Gives you a more real sound that many people, especially musicians like myself, like.

Then again, some musicians suck live. I try to avoid them on CD as well.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (1)

pyite (140350) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349309)

*Sigh* I'm not mad at you, but rather mad at the industry that has degraded the reputation of live performances to something to be NOT wanted. It's a shame really. There are so many bands that are so much better live than they are in the studio. That being said, recordings of live music come in three main varieties.
  1. Soundboard recordings (directly recorded from house mix of the show).
  2. Audience recordings (recorded using microphones from the audience).
  3. A mix of the above two, often known as a "matrix" mix.
While you may scoff at the idea of using microphones to record a live show, I would rather listen to an audience recorded version of a show than its soundboard counterpart. Why? It has the feeling of being there. Soundboard recordings are just that, recordings off the venue's soundboard. These do not sound ideal because the mix is specific to the venue and will contain equalization and other processing to make it sound ideal if it were played back in that venue. Now, when you think of microphones you may think of the cheap $20 variety you can buy for a Karaoke machine. Bands that allow recording (Gov't Mule, Phish, The Dead, moe., etc.) have sections in the venue set up specifically for tapers. Some of these tapers will not hesitate to bring gear to a show worth more than the average car. Such a recording rig consists of microphones, shock absorbing mounts for those microphones, a pre-amp, an analog to digital converter, and a digital recorder in the form of a DAT deck, hard disk based recorder, or laptop. Such equipment produces incredible recordings, recordings which constitute the majority of the music I listen to on a daily basis. Just as a bit of trivia, when you purchase a "live" album in a record store, often times that album will be of the third variety mentioned above, as many sound engineers will have a set of microphones running to record the mix from the audience.

If you're interested in breaking free from slavery to the RIAA, please visit http://www.etree.org [etree.org] or http://www.archive.org/audio/etree.php [archive.org] where you will find hundreds of artists who not only allow recording of their performances, but who encourage the free distribution thereof.

Burn Live® by your pals at ClearChannel (2, Informative)

Safety Cap (253500) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349316)

ClearChannel has a program called Burn Live (the name was changed to "Instant Live"® after an unfortuante incident [newcenturyfriends.net] ) that records most of the entire concert direct from the soundboards. Their deal with Worst^H^H^H^H^HBestBuy also has the CDs in those stores after the show.

Some people don't think Burn Live is all that [pitchforkmedia.com] , either. Note that ClearChannel is trying to lock out competition [weblogsinc.com] of their live CD burninating model by using the patent system.

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (1)

MemoryAid (675811) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349391)

After I've heard a song about 100 times on the radio, I get to know it well enough to perceive other interpretations of the song as somehow 'wrong.' Listening to live music, which is always different from performance to performance, helps stave off this effect.

I will concede, though, that the live music often has missed notes and other errors. It reminds me that professional musicians aren't perfect, they just spend enough time in the studio to perfect the product before release. (Using varying definitions of perfect.)

Re:Confused; could use some answers... (1)

antiMStroll (664213) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349393)

Yea, those crazy MUSIC fans. Who can possible make sense of the things they do?

Now if they could just ... (2, Informative)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349122)

10-year-old anti-bootlegging law unconstitutional
Now if they could just apply the same reasoning to bootlegged booze (which is where the term "bootleg" came from).

Alright (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349133)

Its moonshine time!

isn't that the point? (2, Insightful)

TheQwe (795209) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349158)

..."seemingly perpetual protection."
Isn't that the point of copyright laws? to protect the author/creator/composer/whatever?

Re:isn't that the point? (4, Insightful)

p-hawk42 (776574) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349185)

The point of copyright is to let the creator profit off of his/her work for a time, but not to keep the work out of the public domain perpetually.

Re:isn't that the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349209)

Yes copyright laws exist to protect the creator, but only for a limited time, so that eventually the work can belong to the public.

Re:isn't that the point? (5, Informative)

idesofmarch (730937) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349230)

Perpetual protection is unconstitutional. Article 1, Clause 8, provides Congress with the power to "promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries."

Re:isn't that the point? (1)

TheQwe (795209) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349265)

So the problem isn't the protection but the perpetuity. I get it now.

Re:isn't that the point? (1)

chrisopherpace (756918) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349322)

But perpetual protection of Mickey Mouse is ok, assuming enough funds have been paid to corrupt officials.

Re:isn't that the point? (1)

antiMStroll (664213) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349421)

"But perpetual protection of Mickey Mouse is ok,...

Not perpetual: "perpetual". Two lifetimes isn't really forever, it only appears that way to mortals. SCOTUS can't help it if you don't live for 300 years, excercise more.

Re:isn't that the point? (1)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349443)

Mickey Mouse is a trademark. Whole different kettle of mice.

Re:isn't that the point? (1)

stubear (130454) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349449)

I find it ironic that everyone uses Disney as the whipping boy of all that's wrong with copyright when in fact they exemplify how the system does, and should work. Many arguing for shorter copyright terms are only doing so because they simply want shit for free. Disney, on the other hand, uses what's in the public domain already and creates wonderful works of art and culture. There's nothing stopping you from doing your own animateds versions of Alice in Wonderland or the Sword in the Stone if you want except your lack of talent and motivation to actually add to the creative pool. You simply want to get your copy of the latest film o album for free so you argue that copyrights are stifling creativity and evil monopolies used by greedy corporations to hold the little guy back.

By the way, Mickey Mouse, as well as his friends Donald, Goofy, Minnie and Pluto, amongst others, are protected by Trademark law and not Copyright law. Their protection is indefinite so you'll never be able to create a Mickey Mouse movie but you'll soon be able to distribute Steamboat Willie to all your friends. I'm guessing that's not going to be a popular P2P title though.

Re:isn't that the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349234)

Copyright gives the CREATOR rights to the work for a LIMITED time. Please do some reading on the concept.

Recent issues revolve around how long LIMITED time should be. Sonny Bono copyright act (in USA) extended it to 70 years past death of artist. How the artists is benefiting at that stage is obscure.

Re:isn't that the point? (1)

cwsulliv (522390) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349260)

.."seemingly perpetual protection."
Isn't that the point of copyright laws? to protect the author/creator/composer/whatever?

The US Constititution grants Congress the power to provide copyright protection "for a limited time".

(In practise in recent years this means that whenever the "limited time" is close to expiration, Congress extends it for another "limited time".)

Re:isn't that the point? (4, Insightful)

koreth (409849) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349417)

No, that's not the point of copyright law. Protecting artists is a means, not an end, much as the RIAA might wish otherwise. The point of American copyright laws -- as stated quite unambiguously in the US Constitution -- is to encourage the creation of new work. To achieve that goal, the framers of the Constitution envisioned a bargain between creators and everyone else: creators get the exclusive right to make copies of their work for a limited time, after which the work becomes the property of society as a whole (public domain) and thus available as a starting point for the next generation of artists and authors.

There is no law of nature that stops an idea from spreading from one person to another, even if the idea is in the form of a catchy tune or a long set of words that make up a novel. Copyright law is therefore a restriction of the people's freedom, and it's not in the spirit of the Constitution to restrict the people's freedom without giving them some benefit in return. The "limited time" concept is that benefit: by giving creators extra incentive to create, it says to the people, "Hold off spreading new ideas around for a little while, and there will be more of them for you to play with later." Without the second part of that sentence, the law is simply a restriction of freedom with very little public benefit to make up for it.

That's the theory, anyway. In my opinion current copyright law is already excessive in that a work created the day you're born will not be available to you to build upon until you're on your deathbed.

It is worth observing that the people who argue most strenuously for infinite copyright terms are very rarely the creators of copyrighted works -- they're the publishers of those works. Listen to what the actual artists say and you'll hear a different tune: artists realize that they stand on the shoulders of giants, and that everything they create is based on what's come before. Without that cultural heritage to freely draw upon, creators suffer just as much as everyone else.

fyailz0rs (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349160)

Confusion (4, Funny)

p-hawk42 (776574) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349173)

From the article:

"It stands in marked contrast to existing law and prior decisions that have determined that Congress was well within its constitutional authority to adopt legislation that prevented trafficking in copies of unauthorised performances of live music," spokesman Jonathan Lamy said.

So the performances were illegal?

Re:Confusion (1)

s4m7 (519684) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349333)

not illegal.

unauthorised.

Article text, in case of slashdotting (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349180)


A judge has struck down a law which bans the sale of bootleg recordings of live music in the United States.

Judge Harold Baer Jr, sitting in New York, dismissed charges against a Manhattan-based record dealer which had been brought under the law.

He said the law could not stand because it placed no time limit on the ban - unlike the limits placed on books or recorded music releases.

Prosecutors said they were "reviewing the decision" the judge made.

A federal grand jury indicted Jean Martignon in October 2003 for selling "unauthorised recordings of live performances by certain music artists through his business".

But Judge Baer said US law unfairly granted "seemingly perpetual protection" to the original performances.

US law defines bootlegs as being recordings of the original performances, as opposed to copies of already released music, such as live albums, which are dealt with under piracy legislation.

The Recording Industry Association of America criticised the judge's ruling.

"It stands in marked contrast to existing law and prior decisions that have determined that the RIAA can do whatever it wants to you, bitch," greedy spokesman Jonathan Lamy said.

More details (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349183)

from newsday.com

BY LOU DOLINAR
STAFF WRITER

September 25, 2004

Long before there was Napster, there were concert tapes, live recordings made and swapped by fans of groups like the Grateful Dead and Country Joe and the Fish. Those recordings have narrow constitutional protection from copyright, a judge in Manhattan ruled Friday, handing the Recording Industry Association of America's anti-piracy crusade another defeat.

The ruling came in the criminal case against a longtime fixture in the New York music scene, J.D. Martignon, owner of the Midnight Record store on 23rd Street in Chelsea. At issue was a federal law that criminalizes the sale of bootleg recording of live performances. U.S. District Judge Harold Beard said the law was unconstitutional because it sets no limits on the length of copyright.

Copyright law covers a work for life of the author plus 70 years. The 1994 criminal anti-bootlegging statute runs afoul of that legal standard because it "grants seemingly perpetual protection to live musical performances."

Martignon, a former rock singer and writer for a French music publication, had offered about 1,000 individual concert sessions for sale for between $10 and $20 per concert at his store, which closed after the government seized his stock as evidence, his attorney, Legal Aid lawyer David Patton, said. He could have gone to prison for 5 years. Martignon said Friday that he's still selling vintage recordings legally at his Web site, https://midnightrecords.com/ index.html, but he can't offer concert tapes pending appeal of the ruling.

"We are reviewing the decision and will evaluate what steps are to be taken going forward," a spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office said.

Patton said Friday the ruling solely affects concert tapes of performances where artists do not record their own work for copyright or sale.

"This is not about illegally making copies of CDs," he said. Under the ruling, he said, artists can protect live works merely by recording and copyrighting them, and states can still outlaw live recording.

Edit: No sympathy for those selling pirated works. Jail the f*****.

That's weird... (2, Insightful)

the_skywise (189793) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349207)

I'm all for restrictions on copyright terms to reasonable limits...
But when you consider that it's illegal to record live performances ANYWAY there's no copyright on those recordings to begin with (because their illegit recordings the very nature of those recordings are outlawed) If the band makes a recording of that performance then normal copyright (and the usual limitations) apply.

So if it's illegal to make those recordings, then it's illegal to sale those recordings and it doesn't make sense for the judge to rule that those illegally made recordings should someday become legal because the copyright term has passed.

On the FLIP side however, if this ruling stands and it'll eventually become legal to sell bootleg copies... then it should be LEGAL to make bootlegs to begin with... because it's infringing on my right to someday sell those recordings!

Re:That's weird... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349240)

depending on the band, it may well not be illegal to record.

many bands allow this.

Re:That's weird... (2, Informative)

idesofmarch (730937) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349273)

The reason it is (or at least was) illegal to record live performances, is because of copyright. I think you are getting too caught up in the "copy" part of copyright. A copy does not need to be of another recording - a recording of a live performance constitutes a copy, because you are copying the broadcast.

for crying out loud! (0, Flamebait)

caldfyr (814077) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349215)

I can understand why the guy had charges brought against him, assuming they were posted notices prohibiting the recording of the concert. I think that since bootlegs are illegal in the first place, that having a limit on the ban is silly. That simply invites people to wait for the statute of limitations or the copyright to run out, whichever ends up passing first. Then they ebay the cd or dvd for about 50 jillion dollars to rabid collectors. The only way to fight the problem would be to search for huge caches of no-yet-released bootleg recordings. Whether or not the industry is charging rediculous prices for albums doesn't change the fact that the artist and the company they're contracted to should get the money for their work. You can be certain that the record store owner wasn't sending a check to EMI every month with "your portion from the sale of home-made concert cd's" in the memo block. Don't our judges have better things to do than striking down laws that actually make sense?

Re:for crying out loud! (3, Interesting)

idesofmarch (730937) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349317)

Why should a recording of a live performance have any greater copyright protection than a pressed music CD? Under the current law, 1000 years from now, that recording of the live performance would still fall under protection, which is probably unconstitutional.

Re:for crying out loud! (2, Interesting)

caldfyr (814077) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349454)

Because the recording shouldn't exist. If the artist wants to have a cd burner farm behind the stage that tosses mixboard recordings into the crowd, then that's fine and great.

You aren't understanding the situation. It isn't the recording of the live performance that has protection. Eric Clapton's live recordings that you can buy off Amazon have the same protection as his studio work. The problem is that with bootlegs, the artists aren't getting a say in whether a recording is made of their concert. If they wanted a live recording of their concert, they would exlicitly allow the listeners to make their own, or publish it themselves and make some more money off of their own efforts Terrible, I know. Why can't more artists take vows of poverty...

When someone who hasn't received permission to records the concert, that makes the recording illegal because it violates the artist's copyright.

When a concert is televised, do you think the networks didn't receive permission to do so? If they didn't, people would be charged, fined, and sued into bankruptsy. It is the same concept, just not on as grand of a scale.

Re:for crying out loud! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#10349385)

how is a bootleg going to affect the compensation of the artist?

if the artist isnt selling the concert recording, they are not losing anything.

a concert is a one time deal, if i listen to a recording of a concert last night, did the artist lose money because i didnt attend it?

doubtful

Fly by Night Express (4, Insightful)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349279)

In the true rock & roll tradition, Midnight Records [midnightrecords.com] , the NYC bootleg store that was exonerated by this ruling, has an invalid certificate installed in their webserver. Apparently their server host [psoft.net] self-certifies, without membership in a trust network including popular web browsers. It's these borderline operators [imdb.com] , who take the risks at the edges of the protection of our liberty, who wind up protecting us all.

Oh, great (5, Funny)

bullitB (447519) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349315)

...a federal judge declaring a 10-year-old anti-bootlegging law unconstitutional

Well, this is certainly great for all those 10-year-old bootleggers out there.

See the USC (4, Informative)

max born (739948) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349350)

The judge is probably referring to Article I, Section 8 of the US Constitution which grants Congress the power to grant exclusive rights for a limited time, i.e. there has to be some limit, even if it's a thousand years.

Here's the text:

Congress shall have the power ...[t]o promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries;

Did you see the article's photograph? (2, Informative)

trudyscousin (258684) | more than 10 years ago | (#10349351)

Distributing bootlegs on Zip disks, well, in the eyes of the RIAA, that's gotta be tantamount to murder.
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