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The 10 "Inconvienient Truths" of File Sharing

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the how-the-burn-turns dept.

587

54mc writes "The IFPI, an international recording industry organization, has released a list of Ten "Inconvenient Truths" of file sharing. Though the group has a vested interest, it's still an interesting read as it tears apart some of the most common arguments in favor of file sharing. Ars Technica follows up with a more thorough explanation of some of the points. 'Point five is an attempt to turn the "innovation" argument on its head. For years, pundits outside the music industry have accused labels of pandering to teens through boy bands and "manufactured" celebrities instead of being concerned with finding, producing, and releasing art. The IFPI suggests that the labels could (and would) be doing exactly that if file-swapping went away. And then there's point seven, which isn't an "inconvenient truth" at all but more of a rant against those who prefer giving copyright holders less than absolute control over reproduction rights. An "anti-copyright movement" does exist, but most of the critical voices in the debate recognize the value of copyright--and actually produce copyrighted works themselves (Lawrence Lessig, etc.).'"

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587 comments

Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (5, Insightful)

Lockejaw (955650) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399779)

For years, pundits outside the music industry have accused labels of pandering to teens through boy bands and "manufactured" celebrities instead of being concerned with finding, producing, and releasing art. The IFPI suggests that the labels could (and would) be doing exactly that if file-swapping went away.
What did it take to make them start producing "manufactured celebrities"? As far as I can tell, they were the norm before file sharing became widespread, so it must be something other than file sharing that induces this manufacturing.

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (5, Insightful)

nuzak (959558) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399845)

> What did it take to make them start producing "manufactured celebrities"?

The fact that they were wildly successful doing so. In fact, it's not entirely new and represents something of a return to the patronage system of protegees. The best at their art were not necessarily the most famous then either.

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400135)

>> What did it take to make them start producing "manufactured celebrities"?

>The fact that they were wildly successful doing so.

This dates back to at least the 50's, and is probably an outgrowth of our nation's racist past. Popular black music was re-recorded by a white artist. I imagine they were specifically targeting young women even then. I don't know enough about the Big Band Era, Depression music, etc. to know if the phenomenea predated it. However, prior to the roaring 20's most music was performed live, so any "manufactured celebrities" would be pretty local.

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (4, Insightful)

Zanth_ (157695) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399879)

One such group or perhaps a few do come out of the woodwork and it is part of their "act." They become popular, because they are "cute" and can sing and can dance. The labels observe the popularity and decide that the market can tolerate 100 of these bands. Wash, Rinse, Repeat.

It is the same with any popular act. Instead of trying to discover some fresh artists they go with the "safe bet" and mass produce the over-produced clones in order to pad their wallets. As a business strategy is may seem sound. Some may argue that it even works. The problem is that because they are not going out and really cultivating new and different acts and are using other methods to exclude such music on our airwaves (payola, Clear Channel monopoly etc) we don't get to know if other acts would be as profitable for them or even more so. So their safe bet may be slitting their throat and many observing the trend in declining music sales points to this.

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (4, Insightful)

svendsen (1029716) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400089)

Another theory is the purchasing power of teenage gets is greater then adults. This can be for many reasons (less bills, higher allowance, whatever) but overall teenagers have tons of disposable cash on hand. Also teenagers are a billion times more likely to follow fads to be cool then adults. So if band A is hot, doesn't matter if they don't like band A because they better pretend to be cool.

And being the free market the point of a company is to maximize shareholders profits and not too bring the next great artist to the spotlight. Sometimes being the minority in market (aka your taste vs the rest of the population) leaves you only the selection of fried burgers when you really want a great steak. It sucks.

But unless every adult in the world is going to start blowing all their money on stuff the teenage demographic will reign supreme!

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400203)

What's with all these bad parents who give their kids so much money to waste? I don't remember having much money to waste when I was a teenager; I had enough to hang out with my friends and get a pizza maybe, but not to spend on a lot of crappy music at $15/CD (what it cost back around '90 when I was a teenager).

Maybe these stupid parents should keep their money and spend it on reducing their debt, or buying themselves a CD or two, instead of handing it all over to their spoiled kids.

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (1)

svendsen (1029716) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400357)

At the mall the other day saw 8 year olds with cell phones. My fiancé says what does an 8 year old need a cell phone for? I agree with you. Not sure why a teenager needs so much disposable cash. That's not going to cause problems for society when they become adults...ya right.

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (1)

mc6809e (214243) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400047)

What did it take to make them start producing "manufactured celebrities"? As far as I can tell, they were the norm before file sharing became widespread, so it must be something other than file sharing that induces this manufacturing.

In the past 40 years kids and the generally stupid have seen a big increase in disposable income (though maybe not total income).

The music industry are simply going after all that money.

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (5, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400149)

Precisely. It's all logical fallacy: appeal to sympathy, appeal to authority, complex cause, begging the question, etc. The whole terrorist thing is hasty generalization.

The IFPI is essentially just trying to mindfuck people into believing that nothing needs to change in the music industry and everything needs to change with P2P file sharing. The truth is likely somewhere in the middle -- the music industry needs to learn a better model for making money and P2P file sharing networks need to develop methods of revenue generation that repays artists and producers, while at the same time allowing relatively free exchange of music for casual sharers.

If someone can come up with that solution, they will not only make everyone happy, but they will likely make themselves rich in the process.

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400255)

More likely they'll get sent to prison for allowing you to buy/share the song with "One-Click".

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400193)

They're actually following a business model developed in Japan in the 80's and early 90's. When I saw the adolescent exploitation in Japan during several trips there, I had the mistaken impression that it would never work in the US. After all, didn't the 70's and 80's see an explosion in the quality of our music? Wouldn't people be able to see the loss of that talent and creativity in at least most this boy band pap? I guess the old truism applies that you'll never go broke by underestimating the taste of the American people. At least true to the extent that it worked for a few years of Britney. But people have grown up and gotten rebellious. Good for them and to hell with the major labels!

Re:Wrong answer. What's the real reason? (1)

Himring (646324) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400331)

Exactly. Blaming file-sharing for the practice of manufacturing celebrity is total crap. I grew up in the 80s. I hated the music of the 80s. I hated what they did to zztop, the police, on and on. That is, when legitimate, underground bands were discovered they were so re-manufactured that the music was disgusting. The era just before file sharing is the best example of marketers controlling the art.

As Tom Petty once said, "I like rock because just about the time it start to suck, something shakes it up again."

File sharing is the latest thing to do that, and has done it well....

Lol they're saying they fight for the little guy (1)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400463)

#5 was my fave:
"Reduced revenues for record companies mean less money available to take a risk on "underground" artists and more inclination to invest in "bankers" like American Idol stars. "

Think about that a sec. The suggestion is that they put a certain amount of their revenue toward sure things, and a certain amount toward high-risk, high reward speculation. This is the right way to invest.

But you don't change the % devoted to each kind of investment based on the size of the portfolio, do you?

Yes, the "amount" would increase, but the overall inclination (which, I think, is *heavily toward boring, homogenous revamps of previous successes) doesn't.

The whole list (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19399785)

The whole list:

              1. Pirate Bay, one of the flagships of the anti-copyright movement, makes thousands of euros from advertising on its site, while maintaining its anti-establishment "free music" rhetoric.
              2. AllOfMP3.com, the well-known Russian web site, has not been licensed by a single IFPI member, has been disowned by right holder groups worldwide and is facing criminal proceedings in Russia.
              3. Organized criminal gangs and even terrorist groups use the sale of counterfeit CDs to raise revenue and launder money.
              4. Illegal file-sharers don't care whether the copyright-infringing work they distribute is from a major or independent label.
              5. Reduced revenues for record companies mean less money available to take a risk on "underground" artists and more inclination to invest in "bankers" like American Idol stars.
              6. ISPs often advertise music as a benefit of signing up to their service, but facilitate the illegal swapping on copyright infringing music on a grand scale.
              7. The anti-copyright movement does not create jobs, exports, tax revenues and economic growth-it largely consists of people pontificating on a commercial world about which they know little.
              8. Piracy is not caused by poverty. Professor Zhang of Nanjing University found the Chinese citizens who bought pirate products were mainly middle- or higher-income earners.
              9. Most people know it is wrong to file-share copyright infringing material but won't stop till the law makes them, according to a recent study by the Australian anti-piracy group MIPI.
            10. P2P networks are not hotbeds for discovering new music. It is popular music that is illegally file-shared most frequently.

Re:The whole list (5, Insightful)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399873)

11. Bands don't make real money from record sales, record companies make real money from record sales. Bands make real money from touring.

Re:The whole list (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400341)

12. Record companies aren't interested in bands anyway. They're more interested in "performers" who can't write their own music, can't play any instruments, and can't sing without the help of electronic pitch-correcting aids.

Re:The whole list (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400363)

11a. Bands don't generally have the means to organise or fund the production of albums and extensive touring and promotional duties which they need to perform if they ever want to have a hope of making any money out of their hobby. That's where the labels stump up a lot of cash for the bands which they think are any good. Of course, many labels (mainly majors) are bastards and screw artists, but ethical indie labels operate profit splitting contracts with the bands. In the case of the label that I work for it is 50/50.

Don't tar all the record labels with the same brush. One should no use it as a way to excuse the action of obtaining a service which one has not paid for. If the band did not release the material under a license which allows you to get it for nothing then they probably want to be paid for their work. If you don't like it then fine, don't pay for it. And especially don't kid yourself that you are doing the band a favour. Incidentally, it's also illegal.

Re:The whole list (2, Funny)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400467)

And what's the record company's reason for working with them in the first place? Oh yeah ...

Forest? Nah, I just see a bunch of trees.

Re:The whole list (1, Insightful)

brunascle (994197) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400131)

1. Pirate Bay, one of the flagships of the anti-copyright movement, makes thousands of euros from advertising on its site, while maintaining its anti-establishment "free music" rhetoric.
dont care

2. AllOfMP3.com, the well-known Russian web site, has not been licensed by a single IFPI member, has been disowned by right holder groups worldwide and is facing criminal proceedings in Russia.
dont care

3. Organized criminal gangs and even terrorist groups use the sale of counterfeit CDs to raise revenue and launder money.
fuck you. just, fuck you.

4. Illegal file-sharers don't care whether the copyright-infringing work they distribute is from a major or independent label.
probably true.

5. Reduced revenues for record companies mean less money available to take a risk on "underground" artists and more inclination to invest in "bankers" like American Idol stars.
ok, then, i'll stop listening to band that are trying to "make it big", in addition to the ones that have already made it big. wait, i already did that. next?

6. ISPs often advertise music as a benefit of signing up to their service, but facilitate the illegal swapping on copyright infringing music on a grand scale.
dont care

7. The anti-copyright movement does not create jobs, exports, tax revenues and economic growth-it largely consists of people pontificating on a commercial world about which they know little.
k. never heard anyone argue that it did.

8. Piracy is not caused by poverty. Professor Zhang of Nanjing University found the Chinese citizens who bought pirate products were mainly middle- or higher-income earners.
big shocker there.

9. Most people know it is wrong to file-share copyright infringing material but won't stop till the law makes them, according to a recent study by the Australian anti-piracy group MIPI.
yup.

10. P2P networks are not hotbeds for discovering new music. It is popular music that is illegally file-shared most frequently.
my music collection begs to differ.

so, in conclusion, dont care

Re:The whole list (4, Funny)

superskippy (772852) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400137)

Organized criminal gangs and even terrorist groups use the sale of counterfeit CDs to raise revenue and launder money.
Disorganized criminals just lose the pirated CDs down the back of the sofa before they get chance to sell them. You mean they are using techniques such as forethought and planning? We're doomed!

Re:The whole list is kinda disappointing (1)

Lockejaw (955650) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400159)

1. Pirate Bay, one of the flagships of the anti-copyright movement, makes thousands of euros from advertising on its site, while maintaining its anti-establishment "free music" rhetoric.
I'm afraid I don't see the contradiction between success and being "anti-establishment." I didn't know being anti-establishment meant taking a vow of poverty. Considering how they've responded to the law and government, I'd say they're not in the government's or the recording industry's pockets.

5. Reduced revenues for record companies mean less money available to take a risk on "underground" artists and more inclination to invest in "bankers" like American Idol stars.
I'm sure I'm not the only one who's heard the pull-yourself-up-by-your-bootstraps lecture; they always say that it takes risk to get ahead and that they're just reaping the benefit they earned from taking that risk. Sure, I don't think I've heard it directly from a recording industry executive, but the aversion to risk I see from people who say risk is how you get ahead makes me suspicious.

6. ISPs often advertise music as a benefit of signing up to their service, but facilitate the illegal swapping on copyright infringing music on a grand scale.
By giving people access to that den of thieves called the internet?

9. Most people know it is wrong to file-share copyright infringing material but won't stop till the law makes them, according to a recent study by the Australian anti-piracy group MIPI.
Enough asking for more laws. How much law does it take to stop them? We already have laws against it, and it's still widespread.

10. P2P networks are not hotbeds for discovering new music.
I'll have to take your word for it on P2P, though the internet as a whole seems to be a great place to find it. In any case, music stores aren't "hotbeds for discovering new music" either.

Re:The whole list (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400183)

1. Pirate Bay, one of the flagships of the anti-copyright movement, makes thousands of euros from advertising on its site, while maintaining its anti-establishment "free music" rhetoric.
Website makes money with advertisements, news at 11. Seriously though, who cares?

2. AllOfMP3.com, the well-known Russian web site, has not been licensed by a single IFPI member, has been disowned by right holder groups worldwide and is facing criminal proceedings in Russia.
FUD. civil proceedings, but not criminal. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AllOfMP3.com [wikipedia.org]

3. Organized criminal gangs and even terrorist groups use the sale of counterfeit CDs to raise revenue and launder money.
OMG! TERRORISTS! Selling cds for profit is not online filesharing. And of course terrorists et al will make money any way they can.

4. Illegal file-sharers don't care whether the copyright-infringing work they distribute is from a major or independent label.
So? Very over generalizing - some do some don't. But there's no legal difference, so why should they care, other then to make a point?

5. Reduced revenues for record companies mean less money available to take a risk on "underground" artists and more inclination to invest in "bankers" like American Idol stars.
Companies exist to make profit - rarely risk on "underground artists" anyway. This changes nothing.

6. ISPs often advertise music as a benefit of signing up to their service, but facilitate the illegal swapping on copyright infringing music on a grand scale.
In the same way that car companies advertise performance but facilitate high speed chases. See "common carrier".

7. The anti-copyright movement does not create jobs, exports, tax revenues and economic growth-it largely consists of people pontificating on a commercial world about which they know little.
Oversimplification. It could also be argued that it just redirects peoples money to other items. Also, since when is art about "creating jobs, tax revenue, etc..."

8. Piracy is not caused by poverty. Professor Zhang of Nanjing University found the Chinese citizens who bought pirate products were mainly middle- or higher-income earners.
See 3. Selling for profit does not fileswapping make

9. Most people know it is wrong to file-share copyright infringing material but won't stop till the law makes them, according to a recent study by the Australian anti-piracy group MIPI.
See civil disobedience

10. P2P networks are not hotbeds for discovering new music. It is popular music that is illegally file-shared most frequently.
Misuse of statistics - of course popular music is shared more. but conversely, music that is shared more is by definition more popular. It goes both ways.

Re:The whole list (4, Insightful)

SQLGuru (980662) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400323)

4. Illegal file-sharers don't care whether the copyright-infringing work they distribute is from a major or independent label.
10. P2P networks are not hotbeds for discovering new music. It is popular music that is illegally file-shared most frequently.

Aren't these counter to each other?

Layne

Re:The whole list (1)

thebdj (768618) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400517)

You saved me my C&P, and now to continue with responding to the 10.
1. I agree to some degree. Music isn't really "free", but then again, I do not know how much money PB is making off of advertisements, for all I know they are breaking even, which doesn't sound as bad as making huge loads of profit by flogging your artists to death and releasing "greatest hits" albums after you've released the band. (Look at Reel Big Fish as a recent example.)

2. Did anyone ever actually believe AllofMP3.com was 100% legal? As for the legal action, I believe that was the result of some level of pressure from the US, who seem pretty deep in the pockets of the RIAA.

3. Organized crime has made money off of liquor, tobacco, and illegal drugs to just name a few. In the end, they were usually reduced or stopped by de-criminalizing these items or making them sufficiently cheaper that the market would support them. As for terrorists, I do not buy it. I buy the "buying drugs" supports terrorism more, since I do know they grow poppy in a few countries where terrorism has been said to "breed".

4. Lie! Every indie CD I have wanted I have bought. Now that RBF is indie again and so is Bad Religion this means them. Indie labels == Purchase, RIAA Labels != Purchase (or purchased used). I refuse to believe I am the only person with this level of commitment.

5. Bullshit! You've been manufacturing bands since the 1950s. There have been a few "TV Bands" (the Monkees and the Partridge Family) before I was ever born! You guys have never played a huge role in "underground" artists. When you do, it is only for a short while when their music is popular. Look at the swing-revival and third-wave ska. You picked up these little bands, used them until their music was no longer "popular" and then dumped them.

6. If this were true, the RIAA would have sued the shit out of ISPs already. Or are the large telecoms and cable companies the only people the RIAA is afraid of? Of course, it is a big step up from picking on the handicapped, elderly, under-privileged, students, etc.

7. Like Ars said, this is a low blow that screams of name calling. Anti-copyright is not necessarily total abolishment, but it is about proper fair use protections and reasonable copyright periods. Not periods that mean items will be controlled for decades (or bordering on centuries). This short of closed system prevent items important for artistic or historical purposes from being released and viewed. (The issue with the presidential debates comes to mind.)

8. Yeah, well how many people in China who are in poverty can afford a computer? Why not quote a survey from the US or Europe? Or is it too convenient to pick one that will obviously agree with you. I think these numbers might be a bit different in these areas where I suspect computer proliferation through the classes is considerably greater.

9. Somehow I do not buy a survey from an anti-piracy group. Also, how many children were surveyed, since I bet they are some of the largest violators. I also think there is some degree of apathy when you consider even some of the richer pirates probably make nowhere near as much as the big RIAA studios or popular artists.

10. Do they have any stats to support this? How do you know person X didn't hear what was deemed "popular"? I hardly ever listen to any radio other then talk and sports radio.

Should I be surprised a music industry group took shots at "piracy"? No. Should I be shocked they are spreading their own level of FUD? No. Do they realize this sort of thing hurts them more then it helps? Obviously not. Congratulations for just not getting it, once more.

Should have ended.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19399791)

At #0. Who really cares with any of these points, other than businesses whom rely on the current business model and politicians?

They won't change many minds with that list.

They still make cd players? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19399793)

Who would have thought...

inconvenient truth #1 (5, Insightful)

brunascle (994197) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399797)

it is entirely possible that my actions are unfairly hurting the recording and/or motion picture industry. and i couldnt care less.

You, sir, are an ass. (4, Insightful)

paladinwannabe2 (889776) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400015)

If the MAFIAA provides a valuable service to you, and expects money in exchange, it seems reasonable that you should give them money. If they aren't providing a valueable service, then don't pirate their garbage. Jerks like you give the rest of us who oppose the current copyright regime a bad name.

Re:You, sir, are an ass. (3, Interesting)

brunascle (994197) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400253)

i pay when i feel it is deserved. every song on my MP3 player was legally purchased. i bought the DVD of Prestige recently, because i loved the movie. i do have plently of other downloaded movies, though, that i watched once and will probably never watch again. i'm not playing $20 for a movie i dont know is worth it yet. and i have no idea where the closest rental place is.

Re:You, sir, are an ass. (4, Insightful)

MontyApollo (849862) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400351)

>>i'm not playing $20 for a movie i dont know is worth it yet. and i have no idea where the closest rental place is

Netflix and Blockbuster online have all the movies you can watch for about $20 month. You only have to walk to the mailbox.

You can find trailers and movie reviews online as well to help you decide how to spend your money.

Laziness is kind of a lame excuse.

Re:You, sir, are an ass. (5, Insightful)

Sciros (986030) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400271)

That's the thing, though, isn't it? That the SERVICE THEY ARE PROVIDING isn't very valuable. It's crippled by DRM, it has even gone so far as to prevent people from creating guitar tabs by ear and sharing them. Such service might be worth *something* monetarily, but far less than consumers are being charged. It is not that they are providing garbage per se, more that the *manner* in which they are providing music/film/etc. is unsuitable for many people.

Re:You, sir, are an ass. (3, Interesting)

Arterion (941661) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400479)

I think the GP has it right. Why should I care if a parasitic industry whose owners live like kings on the hard work, ingenuity, and art or a few talented individuals loses money? If I like something, I'll buy tickets to the tour, or I'll buy some merchandise from the artist. Then the artist gets the compensation. The record companies call the shots, have all the money, and decide which artists we get to hear. They take advantage of laws they've lobbied extensively for in order to maintain their power.

I think this, like most other instances where a small caste of people benefit wildly from the work of someone else, will all come to an end through technology, and the richest individuals will find themselves living only as well as everyone else -- and for the everyone else, this will be quite an improvement.

That's what file sharing means to me. It's a non-violent way to say NO. I don't think most people who participate would present their case exactly like this, but it's the underlying theme.

Re:inconvenient truth #1 (1)

jstretch78 (1102633) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400035)

I couldn't agree more. Anything the main stream labels touch eventually turns into shit anyhow. Diminishing their revenues will only make the demand for 'underground' talent grow. I'm definitely not paying to listen to 18 year old American Idol choir boy's templated 'debut' album.

Re:inconvenient truth #1 (4, Insightful)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400263)

I'm definitely not paying to listen to 18 year old American Idol choir boy's templated 'debut' album.

But... you ARE going to pirate it? Do you even LISTEN to yourself?

Downloading. (4, Insightful)

rustalot42684 (1055008) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399801)

If I had a way to buy music online with no DRM and no credit card (I don't have one), on any platform (i.e. Linux), I would. But I don't. That said, I personally don't download illegally much anyways, because it eats up my connection. So I end up going to Best Buy, and buying CDs.

Re:Downloading. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400291)

If there was a CD shop within walking distance (I don't have a car), on the way to the sandwich shop (so I don't have to go out of my way), I'd buy CDs. But there isn't, so I get music from iTunes.

And by the way, iTunes Plus tracks meet every single one of your requirements (as you can pay with a card bought in Best Buy) except running on Linux (though of course, you can play the music on Linux, just not use Linux to access the store).

Re:Downloading. (2, Interesting)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400295)

So I end up going to Best Buy, and buying CDs.

Great, so you're passing on supporting one form of evil (overpriced DRMed downloadable music) and supporting another evil (Best Buy) instead.

Stop supporting evil and buy music from someplace non-evil, like your local used CD store (or an online one like secondspin.com).

Re:Downloading. (2, Insightful)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400339)

I buy my music online from Amie Street [amiestreet.com] . They give me my music with no DRM and it should work on any platform. (Their website works in FireFox, so I don't see why FF-on-Linux shouldn't work and the songs themselves are plain MP3 format.) The no credit card thing would be an issue almost anywhere you shop online though. And no, Amie Street isn't "big name celebrity singers" (except for Barenaked Ladies), but they have a bunch of smaller groups who have great sounds. Personally, I'd recommend Beats Working, Filthy Teddy, Foregone, and Seth Kallen & The Reaction. Your musical tastes may vary, of course, but there's a huge number of songs to choose from. (No, I don't work for Amie Street in any way, shape, or form. I just really like their service.)

Great post.. (5, Interesting)

Mockylock (1087585) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399819)

It would actually be nice to see actual numbers of sales and correlation between Newer and unknown bands becoming popular due to file sharing. The people actually cursing copyright infringements are usually those who are already millionaires. The rest know they had become famous because of it, and they can rely on concert sales (the real skill) for income.

I'm not for ALL filesharing for music, but rather using it for recognition and buying albums to support their cause.

Re:Great post.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400161)

Arctic Monkeys didn't become big from file sharing. Nope. Not at all.

Re:Great post.. (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400317)

I think there's too much else going on to make those statistics mean anything in regards to 'file sharing'. There's the new-found hatred of the RIAA, there's new services like Rhapsody that make listening to unknown music easier, there's world-wide communication... And those are just the things in favor of Indie bands.

As for it helping the Indie bands... It would help them more, not less, if artists had to specifically give their music away, instead of people just sharing whatever they like. Indie bands would initially be the only free music available, and their popularity would soar.

But they don't, do they? Even when MP3.com specialized in doing just that, they still didn't take off. I never found a single song on that site that I liked... At the time, I wasn't surprised, since I'm very picky about music. (I like a very tiny bit from about every genre.) But I've been trying Rhapsody's service... And I've already found 2 artists that I really like (a Brit and a Native American) and quite a lot of music that is enjoyable. I'm not sure what that all means yet, but it seems to mean that giving your music away doesn't help your popularity. Only having good music does that.

Re:Great post.. (1)

Mockylock (1087585) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400413)

Yeah, I agree when it comes to mp3.com. Everything I listened to on there was pretty much garbage.

There have been quite a bit of artists that I wouldn't have listened to, or found, if I didn't just stumble across them in newsgroups.

With file sharing and the new crackdowns on internet radio, it seems as though it's going to be a bit of a rough ride for the new guy, in some ways.

Number 11: (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19399837)

Copyright infringement is theft.

Word fogging (5, Insightful)

Kpau (621891) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399857)

first issue is that "file sharing" is not automatically the illegal sharing of copyright violated files. More credibility may be had if one uses "copyright violation" or "illegal file sharing" ... as I sit here torrenting a blizzard game patch and torrenting some linux packages I note that driving a car does not equal "hit and run". But then murk and word-fogging seem to be standard ops for people who equate copyright violation (civil) with piracy (mayhem, murder, etc).

Re:Word fogging (1)

Cutriss (262920) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400349)

"Illegal file sharing" muddies up the water just as badly. It may be qualifying the term "file sharing", but continually using it paired with "illegal" will make the two synonymous.

Quick responses... (5, Insightful)

pla (258480) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399875)

1) PirateBay has ads. So what? So does Slashdot.
2) Previous Russian law allowed AllOfMP3. It no longer does. So?
3) Copying a CD from my friend doesn't (yet) count as terrorism, guys.
4) Very few people care about the label behind their music, pirated or not.
5) So the labels can't afford small artists - Good thing they don't actually need labels anymore!
6) That would break the law. File suit, if you actually believe such BS.
7) Boo-hoo, I don't generate tax revenue. Hear the violins?
8) "Bought Pirate Products" - Change the subject, much?
9) The law already disallows piracy. Most people just don't care.
10) I've discovered over half of the artists currently on my playlist via questionably-legal means.

file sharing is "wrong" (5, Insightful)

ducman (107063) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399973)

9. Most people know it is wrong to file-share copyright infringing material but won't stop till the law makes them.

Copyright infringment may be illegal, but "illegal" is not the same thing as "wrong."

Re:file sharing is "wrong" (1)

svendsen (1029716) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400243)

But getting caught doing something illegal (whether you think it is right or wrong) can still screw your life up.

Re:file sharing is "wrong" (1)

networkBoy (774728) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400501)

Illegal is another way to say your society has determined it is wrong.

Seriously, pirate if you want, I don't really care that much. What I do care about is that you understand when you are breaking a law and be *honest* with *yourself* as to why.

For example, I pirate Doctor Who. Why? Because I don't want to wait a year for it to get to the states. I am a rabid fan, I offered the BBC money (ala TV Tax), through inaction they have not granted me permission, but still I download. I don't download movies (that's what Netflix is for). I don't download music much (no good sites carry torrents of what I really like anyway, and even AllOfMP3 barely has what I want). Do I break the law? likely. Do I care? yes. Am I honest? yes.

The "I wouldn't have bought it anyway" crowd is what pisses me off. I've DL'd software before, and without fail either bought it or decided it was crap and deleted it. Why? Because I wouldn't have downloaded it if I didn't have a need for some functionality. If it fills my needs, I buy it because I want the support and upgrade path. If it didn't work out for my needs then I saved a couple bucks. I've been burned far too many times buying software that was crap, but nonreturnable. A couple times I've gotten a store to issue a credit so I can buy a different package, but that's rare, and only once was I able to get a manufacturer to refund me.
-nB

Re:Quick responses... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400211)

If you're going to actually RTFA, could you at least summarize it here for us? :)

Re:Quick responses... (1)

dave420 (699308) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400225)

#2 isn't file sharing. It's commercial copyright infringement, which is a criminal offense in countries that have even slightly strict copyright laws. P2P for personal use is usually only a civil offense in those countries. It's taring P2P with a bad name by proxy. It's a completely different thing, yet this cocknozzle seems to think it's cool. Also "Piracy", which implies the same thing, but again is completely different to copyright infringement. I don't remember tales of the pirates of old boarding ships, making copies of everything on board out of their own materials, then slinking off into the night with no-one none-the-wiser. Pirates STOLE something, a legal concept borne from people losing their physical property, not from people getting stuff they didn't pay for.

And to play devil's advocate, #1 turns copyright infringement into commercial copyright infringement, as they're earning money from copyright infringement. I'm not saying it's a bad thing in itself, but "so what" and "so does slashdot" don't really apply as counters to that point.

Re:Quick responses... (1)

mstahl (701501) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400383)

1) PirateBay has ads. So what? So does Slashdot.

Yes! Right from the start they lost me with this one. The only thing that it means is that they're upset about that money not going to them. Honestly though, PirateBay offers a service that people want, and the recording industry is not efficiently providing that service right now. I don't think it's such a shock that other organizations are stepping up—even illegally—to the plate to take over, and making money from that decision.

4) Very few people care about the label behind their music, pirated or not.

I do, but not in that same way. I'm much more likely to try out an artist if they're on a label that I really like. I've discovered a lot of new bands that way just by seeing what my favourite labels are up to.

5) So the labels can't afford small artists - Good thing they don't actually need labels anymore!

Yeah, ummm, I really don't think it's illegal file sharing that's causing the labels to support American Idol contestants and whatnot. I think it's more about economics. They have their economics, and the small indie labels have theirs. With the way things are now, exchanging music as a physical medium is making less and less sense, and the little guys are taking advantage of it.

7) Boo-hoo, I don't generate tax revenue. Hear the violins?

This one's my favourite, because it's absolutely right, of course, but it's an argument that I couldn't possibly imagine anyone who wasn't an economist caring about. This is like how my grandparents buy a new car every three years because they were alive in the 50s when people did that to keep the American economy going. I sincerely doubt that adjusting the velocity of the money supply is something that most people consciously think about in their purchasing decisions.

10) I've discovered over half of the artists currently on my playlist via questionably-legal means.

I think the argument is right, again, but I think what's going on is most people on Slashdot aren't gonna be downloading that new Ashley Simpson album.

For a while, I was discovering my music by questionable means. By now it's that I can sample and peruse at my leisure online, and I can find all kinds of new things every day just by listening. If I like it, I'll buy it. If I don't I don't have to. It's a pretty rockin' good time, and like I said before it's a lot easier for new artists to get exposure.

If you fileshare, the terrorists have won! (1)

line-bundle (235965) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399893)

Some random observations.

It's a very interesting how they managed to sneak in terrorists.

But I don't understand how counterfeit CDs and filesharing have to do with each other.

I don'g get number 4. Can anyone explain to me what the inconvenience is?

Re:If you fileshare, the terrorists have won! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400143)

Terrorists are funny. Look at the US.

1. Drugs Fund Terror. No one is going to stop smoking or snorting.
2. Diamonds Fund Terror. But they are also forever and get you laid.
3. Cigarettes fund terror. With new increased taxes on cigs, organized crime is making a lot of money importing cases from less restrictives states/Indian reservations.

Now piracy is funding terror. It is no surprise to me that when demand is high enough and excessive restrictions lead to new markets of opportunity that they will be exploited by criminal organizations.

If stopping terror is truly the goal, than we are going about it on the wrong path.

Re:If you fileshare, the terrorists have won! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400481)

i guess #4 is about copyright infringement hurting the little guy. it's not actually true either. some communities (indietorrents being the one that comes to mind) actually requires that anything you share is NOT on a major label.

Point 11 (5, Insightful)

rlp (11898) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399895)

They left one out:

11) So all that justifies:
    a) A legal vendetta against a disabled single mom, children, dead people, etc.
    b) Treating out customers like criminals
    c) Trying to extort money from and/or destroy any channel the industry does not
          control (like Internet radio).
    d) Bribing lawmakers to extend copyrights ad infinitum.
    e) Attempting to eliminate the legal concept of 'fair use'.

More useless FUD (1)

AP2k (991160) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399915)

Pirate Bay, one of the flagships of the anti-copyright movement, makes thousands of euros from advertising on its site, while maintaining its anti-establishment "free music" rhetoric.
And? It doesnt cost me a damn thing to go to TPB, especially when I can search directly from kTorrent without seeing a single advert.

I might give the music industry time of day if only it had arguements that made even a small bit of coherence. The "they are really stabbing you in the back" arguement is ridiculous.

Re:More useless FUD (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400495)

TPB may bring in some money from advertising, but I'm sure they also spend quite a bit of money running all those servers (and getting new servers when the police confiscate theirs because of foreign political pressure). It's not like it's all going to line their pockets.

The worst part about this disingenuous "Inconvenient Truths of File Sharing" list is that some of the points are about commercial piracy (making counterfeit CDs and DVDs), which has nothing at all to do with online file sharing. That's like me making a list of "Inconvenient Truths about Climate Change" and alongside points like "Ocean levels are rising as a result, causing valuable coastal land to be submerged", two of the points being about terrorists.

Only ten? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19399931)

... the list was actually 20 long, but they condensed. Here's the rest:

11. Illegal filesharing puts puppies in blenders.
12. Illegal filesharing makes the baby jeebus cry.
13. Illegal filesharing leads to people removing the tags from their mattres.
14. Illegal filesharing causes male-pattern baldness.
15. Illegal fileshreing can make you teh ghay.
16. Illegal filesharing can make you teh straight.
17. Illegal filesharing killed Chuck Norris.
18. Illegal filesahring fills the tubes.
19. Illegal filesharing caused Pangea to split.
20. Illegal filesharing makes international trade groups release incredibly stupid 'top ten' bullshit like this, only cementing people's desire to fileshare further.

Seriously. Fuck these people and their little top ten list ...

Re:Only ten? (2, Funny)

aicrules (819392) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400117)

Seriously. Fuck these people

It took some time and some creative googlemapping, but DONE!

and their little top ten list ...

I'm still trying to find the right hole to do the same to this one though...

Re:Only ten? (1)

u-bend (1095729) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400177)

>19. Illegal filesharing caused Pangea to split.

hahahahaha! They must have been using TCP/IP over bongos [slashdot.org] (I know, Pangea was a long time before bongos, settle down).

Yes, I know my user id is high. Yes, I've been lurking for a long time.

Re:Only ten? (1)

rikkards (98006) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400279)

Ok you are blowing this out of proportion,the end consumer is authorized to remove the mattess tags but I don't know anyone who would like to eat mattress.

Re:Only ten? (1)

svendsen (1029716) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400457)

"Illegal filesharing killed Chuck Norris."

Chuck Norris is out back and would like to "talk" to you about your statement that ANYTHING can kill him. Dude he looks pissed.

Wow... (4, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 6 years ago | (#19399933)

that was an incredibly thin piece of propaganda if I ever read one. They did not even try to explain truths about file sharing but only regurgitated the same old lines that you hear from the undereducated executives that talk to the media.

They ignore the inconvienent truths such as....

If the product was available in a form and at a price people were willing to pay, they would buy it.

Record companies are refusing to adopt new standards and ideas that people want. Mp3 players are things that people really really like. They also want to be able to play that song anywhere. DRM music files do not allow that so they either rip the sings or pirate them.

song trading has went on forever. Mix tapes, trading Records or CD's etc.. has happened as long as audio tape existed. I traded Reels with friends of albums. (reel to Reel tape, way before casettes.)

Most P2P file sharing is garbage. Most people are not happy with the quality of the music they download, the id3 tags are wrong, the music is ripped with a crappy ripper (itunes or Media player) etc....

Re:Wow... (3, Insightful)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400531)

If the product was available in a form and at a price people were willing to pay, they would buy it.

But, they used to buy MORE than they do now. And the form in which you usually buy it (say, on a CD) remains available. What's changed is that people are no longer willing to pay what the artists ask for their recordings because they've found an easy way to rip it off, instead. The number of people who really, actually, thoughtfully are downloading pirated copies so that they have a more flexible version of something they've actually purchased ... fractional, compared to the kids to just grab it because now they can, without having to actually pay for the entertainment they want.

Record companies are refusing to adopt new standards and ideas that people want. Mp3 players are things that people really really like. They also want to be able to play that song anywhere.

Unless, of course, you take into account the publisers that ARE starting to sell non-DRMed files for that exact reason. When you say "record companies," you say it like you're describing all of them accurately, and that you know exactly what they're all collectively going to be doing for the next 12 months. They're not a homogenous group, and they're busy working on it, and on retaining as customers the very artists that every seems to be happy to rip off.

song trading has went on forever. Mix tapes, trading Records or CD's etc.. has happened as long as audio tape existed. I traded Reels with friends of albums. (reel to Reel tape, way before casettes.)

And did you really have hundreds of thousands or millions or anonymous friends with whom you shared bit-accurate exact copies? Really?

Most P2P file sharing is garbage. Most people are not happy with the quality of the music they download, the id3 tags are wrong, the music is ripped with a crappy ripper (itunes or Media player) etc....

Oh, well, then that makes it OK, I guess, to rip off the really good quality stuff from someone else, then. Yeesh.

SHOCK and AWE ...and now pity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19399943)

Point five is such a load of bull, if they were interested in art they wouldn't be swimming in money now.
The record company is certainly not interested in finding innovative artists.
The best way for an artist to become mainstream is through illegal distribution of their record.
Then he gets one dollar per album from his pimping record company, if he's lucky.

No they want to keep their gimmick going for as long as they can. If it's not the white boybands it's the black boybands then after that a year of island/caribbean style music, when we get sick of that they throw b*tchez and bling at us.
They have this planned out for years ahead just like the sanitary napkins commercials.

Rebuttal (1)

ShedPlant (1041034) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400021)

My personal response to those claims: 1. I'm sure their serving and bandwidth costs are pretty big. Anyone can host adverts on a popular site and make money. 3. This is irrelevant to online file sharing. Also, the unprovable claim that 'generic evildoers' may do something does not make it evil too. 5. No, I don't buy that. Record labels are out to make money on 'bankers', not trying to lose it on 'underground' artists. 10. When art is given away freely, good content tends to shine. I don't consider the others worth addressing, tbh.

My reply! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400079)

My reply:
1. Advertising doesn't apply to all sites. The people who run PirateBay say they make modest earnings, but obviously their hosting is pretty unpredictable and they're liable to have their servers snatched at any time. Do you blame them for having a contingency fund?
2. AllOfMP3 is bullshit.
3. Organised gangs that make bootleg CDs are exactly the reason you should download rather than buy Hong-Kong silvers.
4. How do they know that illegal file-sharers don't make a distinction between major label and independent record labels? Have they done a poll?
5. I can perhaps understand this, but do record labels really take a chance on innovative bands in the first place? Most bands on major labels these days are either MOR bands almost certain to succeed or have a couple of albums on an indie first.
6. Oh. What has ISPs indirectly making money out of piracy got to do with the price of fish?
7. So the proliferation of broadband was not responsible to the popularity of filesharing at all? Assuming it does have an effect, has the money going to be paid to the copyright owners just disappear or something?
8. Wait, wait, wait. How much do middle-class Chinese people make? Chances are, compared to western countries, it's very little. Chances are, despite being middle class, they still can't afford genuine versions of everything they buy.
9. Well, duh. P2P is illegal. But does it make the law /just/?
10. The most popular albums are the most pirated albums, as there is most interest in them. Unsurprising really, least of all thanks to the quality of many recent albums few people wish to buy blind. That doesn't mean those people would have bought that music anyway.

How about these inconvenient truths:
1. The vast majority on artists on major labels never recoup - they never make any money from their records. Whatsmore, there's no indication that the artists are suffering, with music festivals and gig tickets selling out quicker than ever before.
2. Piracy is responsible for the evolution of the music business. iTunes wouldn't exist today if it wasn't for the old Napster.
3. Piracy empowers the consumer. Music prices have dropped - sure, the record company will see this as a bad thing, but I don't.
4. The RIAA has systematically used its influence to sue customers, stop internet radio, misrepresent other company's positions and more. Is it surprising that customers are rebelling?
5. A couple of years ago the BPI started suing people the same year they announced record CD sales. So if they aren't about CD sales, what are they about? Maintaining control of your product?
6. The vast majority of downloaded albums would never be bought in the first place by the listener. Saying that piracy is rampant hardly means that you'd get increased profits if it wasn't.
7. Leisure product gets less popular when both DVD are competing and there are economic problems non-shocker. Perhaps the record industry just want an excuse?
8. Pirating in 3rd-world countries is because they simply can't afford legitimate products.
9. Artificially controlling prices by trying to prevent parallel imports is just going to leave a bad taste in people's mouths. In the modern world of eBay, it's impossible to stop and preventing people from buying legitimate products isn't going to win you any friends.
10. All the anti-piracy measures have just treated legitimate consumers as pirates and has done nothing to step the tide of piracy. You might want it so people pay twice so they can put music on their iPods, but it isn't going to happen and is just going to piss a lot of people off in the process.

93% of counterfeit CDs and DVDs comes from China? (1)

superskippy (772852) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400095)

93% of counterfeit CDs and DVDs comes from China? Funnily enough, I'm pretty certain 93% of all my stuff that isn't food comes from China.

The 10 Convenient Truths About File Sharing (5, Insightful)

VE3OGG (1034632) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400097)

1. It encourages the distribution of art. That is what music is -- art. It isn't a product that can be bought, marketed, packaged and sold (though some people would love to believe so). The band, well maybe they could be a product, but the music itself can never be.

2. It encourages innovation. While it might sound less than ideal from a public relations standpoint, file sharing encourages programmers and problem solvers to think of more interesting and innovative methods to circumvent the measures put in place, and it furthers the study of peer-to-peer technology. You went from Napster, to Kazaa, to bitTorrent, with massive leaps at each step.

3. It opens music to a much wider audience. Let's face it, most stores will never carry certain artists and one wants to know that they like the artist before they shell out the cash for a CD from Amazon or eBay. And lets face it, the radio stations will seldom, if ever, play bands like Screeching Weasel, Cara Dillon, Celtae, R.A.M.B.O., or even some fo the more popular people like Jann Arden or Sinead O'Conner and Sarah Brightman. In fact, case in point: Rage Against the Machine. I called a local radio station when they said, "ok, the lines are open, tell us what you want to hear, because this is a radio station powered by YOU!". I called and requested RATM, what did they say? "Oh, sorry, that is too hard for our listeners. I just said okay, and turned off the radio. Barely ever play it anymore.

4. It helps gain artist recognition and exposure. Had file sharing come along, how many of you might know who BoA or Ayumi Hamazaki are?

5.It forces artists to be more creative, and less like the Back Street Boys and Spice Girls. If everyone of the bands sound the same, it forces more people to look elsewhere for the music that fits their tastes.

6. It breaks the copyright holder's regime. I'm sorry, this is going to piss off a lot of individuals around here, since a lot of people pay lip service to the "benefiot" of copyright, but the system is fundamentally flawed. Ever since the Bono-act, the fact that you could "extend" an artificial monopoly is just plain WRONG.

7. It also helps bring artists that would have no exposure form the record labels to break into the mainstream (or at least get a few more listeners and feedback).

8. It exposes people to more than the drivel that comes off the radio today. I like to equate most music on the radio and that is being produced by the big labels as "dime store fiction". In other words, a waste of plastic. Now there is some music (in every genre) that isn't produced by the big name labels that is VERY good. This allows people not "in the know" about the "scene" to become exposed to it.

9. For the love of all that is HOLY, file sharing does not only mean music. Lots of stuff (that is public domain or otherwise free) is distributed via filesharing. Not to mention the amount of pr0n.

10. ??? & Profit! (sorry, I couldn't resist)

Re:The 10 Convenient Truths About File Sharing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400431)

> 4. It helps gain artist recognition and exposure. Had file sharing come along, how many of you might know who BoA or Ayumi Hamazaki are?

Does the fact that I still don't know who these people are mean I'm not doing enough illegal downloading of music? (Btw, presumably you meant "Had file sharing NOT come along..."?)

Re:The 10 Convenient Truths About File Sharing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400485)

Aren't 3, 4, 7 and 8 all saying the same thing using different words?

Bubblegum (0)

Otter (3800) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400101)

A few months ago, someone here unwittingly made what I think is one of the strongest arguments that piracy drives music to the least common denominator: look at Asia. Artists and labels can't expect to make money from recordings, so they generate an endless stream of teen-friendly clones who can make money from mall concerts. I pointed that out to the guy who was citing China as the example of a music industry flourishing despite rampant piracy, and none of the furious responses (Faye Wong!, Faye Wong!, What about Faye Wong?, You're a racist, and what about Faye Wong?) convinced me otherwise.

Before you flame me, have you written you congressman and senators to support the Internet Radio Equality Act? No? Then STFU, write to them, and then berate me about Faye Wong.

Re:Bubblegum (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400483)

Two words blow apart your argument: Faye Wong.

pro copyright (2, Insightful)

Rotworm (649729) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400119)

At least in the case of Lessig he's stated he is not anti-copyright, he is pro-copyright-reform.

Eh? (1)

glwtta (532858) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400151)

I can't believe I kept reading past the "supports terrorism" Gowdinning, but I am curious about how they determined that "Illegal file-sharers don't care whether the copyright-infringing work they distribute is from a major or independent label". (well, I'm curious about how they came up with any of those "truths", but that's a different point)

For me, what label an album is released on is the major criterion in determining how it will be procured - surely I am not the only one?

Allow me to preach to the choir (4, Interesting)

gold23 (44621) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400163)

Copyright infringement, however terrible it may be, does not deserve to be placed on the same level as the climate change problem. These "truths" may be inconvenient to them, but they are hardly a global crisis.

See items 5 and 10 (paraphrased here): File sharing forces record companies to devote resources to big-name marketing vehicles rather than "artists" [item 5]; You won't find new music through file-sharing because it's mostly "popular music" [item 10]. It sounds to me as though they're playing into the hands of the infringers, then, by continuing to produce and promote exactly those things that are the bread and butter of their nemeses.

However, I will concede that point 3 is correct. In fact, I purchased a bootleg Britney Spears CD from a poorly-disguised gentleman calling himself Mr. "Lin-Baden" last week.

Is this gonna be like (1)

jzuska (65827) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400179)

that horrible movie that global warning is real and hurricanes are going to kill us all?

Point 3 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400215)

3. Organized criminal gangs and even terrorist groups use the sale of counterfeit CDs to raise revenue and launder money.
This is the same argument that is often used to justify the War on Drugs. The rebuttal is that they (the criminals) wouldn't make money selling drugs/music if it wasn't illegal/[DRM-laden,expensive,unoriginal,nontransfe rable,...]!

10 Garbage Answers (1)

grev (974855) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400251)

I'm just gonna highlight a few that really bothered me.

5. Reduced revenues for record companies mean less money available to take a risk on "underground" artists and more inclination to invest in "bankers" like American Idol stars.

The reduced revenues are not a result of piracy at all. Also, record companies don't "take risks" when they sign artists, they take them for everything they are worth, and then spit the crumbs back.

7. The anti-copyright movement does not create jobs, exports, tax revenues and economic growth-it largely consists of people pontificating on a commercial world about which they know little.

No, it largely consists of people who believe the notion of copyright & intellectual property is morally wrong.

9. Most people know it is wrong to file-share copyright infringing material but won't stop till the law makes them, according to a recent study by the Australian anti-piracy group MIPI.

What the fuck?

10. P2P networks are not hotbeds for discovering new music. It is popular music that is illegally file-shared most frequently.

Oh boy, if this isn't a logical fallacy if I've ever seen one!

Ten inconvenient answers (5, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400347)

For the "questions", RTFA.

1. Besides the obvious "so?" answer, they, too, gotta pay their ISPs. Given the traffic they got, that bill could be a tad bit more than the average person can earn with honest work (for the IFPI, this is usually less than 3000 bucks a month).

2. AOMP3 has a license from the Russian equivalent. Care to tell me why globalisation is only good if it works for the company and against the customer?

3. I don't respond to arguments based on terrorism or child porn. They get old and are usually based on thin air. Like in this case. Care to show me ANY kind of proof (or at least a forged statistic) where Ozzy has been buying his AKs with money he got from selling bootlegs?

4. A quite blatant generalisation. Fact: It's often impossible to get a "honest" version of some out of print indie song. Many would buy it, if they could. Though, if you take a look through the various "old school" musicians who took their time to build up a support base, you'll see that their CDs sell quite well, often despite (or maybe because?) they refuse to use DRM or other crippling means, despite their fans being able to get the material easily through P2P means. Yet still, they buy the song because they want to show the artist their support. Check album sales for reference.
I can understand, though, that it's hard to sell some overhyped crap of a noname that you'll drop the next month.

5. Yes, and since the internet has been your bane since the New Kids on the Block (that was in ... 1990? Earlier? Don't remember, look it up), this is certainly the reason why you refuse to support new artists and instead go for castbands. Anyone who believes that might want to take up my offer of a nice bridge with a perfect view on L.A.

6. Car ads praise the maneuverability and speed of their cars, are they now liable for bank robberies and their cars being used for getaways? Phone services offer pre-paid phones where you don't have to go through the hassle of filling out forms, are they now liable for those phones being used in kidnapping calls? And don't make me start about guns.

7. The copyright world doesn't either. It outsources jobs to sweatshops and siphons money off our youth. With the difference, that they DO know how the commercial world runs. Unfortunately, though, they know little about art.

8. No, it usually is caused by people not wanting getting their computer infested with spyware or other unwanted "goodies", or that the content simply doesn't work on their system because the industry fails to conform with a standard, and so they have to resort to other means to get to use what they bought. Not buying because one is not able to afford the content is rarely if ever a reason. Maybe ignoring students.

9. Most people realized that it's near impossible to navigate the copyright laws and that they're guilty of breaking a law anyway if they don't live like a hermit. So many thought, why bother trying? More laws will only make this effect worse.

10. Actually P2P software is a tool. I use it to get (and spread) new versions of Linux. MMORPGs spread their updates through them. Others find music in it, decide that it's good and go buy the CD. And of course there are those that don't discriminate and download simply everything there is, hunting and gathering is a strong impulse in the human. Generally, though, P2P tools are simply that, a tool. You can use it for good, you can use it for bad, it depends on the person using it. Like the cars, the phones or the guns.

They deserve to go out of business (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#19400355)

Record companies, which have the nerve to put on their web site that they don't want to hear any "unsolicited" talent, material really deserve to go out of business.

Mostly pretty accurate, I suppose... (1)

gfxguy (98788) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400409)

But #5: Reduced revenues for record companies mean less money available to take a risk on "underground" artists and more inclination to invest in "bankers" like American Idol stars.

Are they still promoting the fallacy that every copy equals a lost sale?

I do believe they are losing money, but nearly so much as they say. I think we all know this to be true. I also think that there is going to have to be some acceptable level, or the restrictions will be so severe as to only hamper legitimate use.

Now, you'll look at that last sentence and laugh, because we're already there. But what the industry is seeing is only the start of the giant backlash against treating honest customers like criminals. I guess these things will happen in cycles, as the off-disk copy protection schemes that software companies used in the late 80s caused them a lot more grief than it saved them; yet here we are again, with MS leading the way.

There's already been a backlash in modern music technology. A few years ago you might buy, say, a Sony digital music player only to then realize it wouldn't play your music, as such. The backlash worked, and now most music players are quite open to unencumbered formats. Record companies are hesitating to use on disc copy protection.

They can say what they want, but it's their own draconian approaches that are making it more equitable for consumers to copy music illegally; why should I pay for an encumbered version of a song when I can get an unencumbered version for "free?"

And #9: Most people know it is wrong to file-share copyright infringing material but won't stop till the law makes them, according to a recent study by the Australian anti-piracy group MIPI.

Most people also know it's against traffic code to speed, but they do it anyway because the speed limits are too low specifically to help governments generate more revenue. When the feds lifted the 55MPH limit (or when they were forced to, anyway), traffic fatalities went DOWN because people were able to drive at speeds they were more comfortable with.

If the music industry takes a freaking chill pill, continues to take legal action against illegal copying, but refrains from draconian measures that prevent honest buyers from using the music as they see fit, sales will improve, IMO.

Heres an inconvienient truth... (1)

night_flyer (453866) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400433)

3) Organized criminal gangs and even terrorist groups use the sale of counterfeit CDs to raise revenue and launder money.
8) Piracy is not caused by poverty. Professor Zhang of Nanjing University found the Chinese citizens who bought pirate products were mainly middle- or higher-income earners.

if you are buying a hard copy, it isnt file "sharing"...

The REAL Inconvenient Truth (2, Funny)

Shadow Wrought (586631) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400445)

Is that the only way to stop global warming is to dramatically increase the number of pirates. Were it not for these valiant File Sharing buccaneers, we'd already be hip deep in the Ocean. Who are we to deny them their religious freedoms under the 1st Amendment? The recording industry is not only areligious, but also anti-Constitution.

Monopolistic distribution channels are at fault (1)

hAckz0r (989977) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400465)

The "labels" use the law to justify their monopoly by contractually forcing the "artists" into exclusive source distribution deals and assigning all their rights over to the Label. The Artist is the only valid monopoly that should exist, and without question they should be paid the greater sum of what money is collected for their works. The distribution channel should not be under an exclusive distribution contract so that the market forces can reward the artist with the "value" that the customers place on their works. If I like an artist then they should be paid well, not the Mafia cartel of Labels. Forget about file sharing for a moment, the Artists just need to get out from under the Draconian distribution control of the labels since that expense is no longer justified given the new distribution models that now exist. If the Labels want to do some "marketing" for the Artist thats fine, but they should not be in control of the distribution channels anymore.

One Convenient Truth (1)

Groovus (537954) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400507)

Intellectual Property isn't. It's a fiction perpetrated on society by those who've found the gravy train of leeching off the backs of those who create or do actual work. It really is something for nothing as it's currently advertised and is supporting a whole legion of parasites. Here's more news - most of the stuff called intellectual property isn't worth much. That last episode of Battlestar Galactica - not worth much in the grand scheme of things. If there were no Battlestar Galactica we'd all get on just fine. I don't need my rights as an individual human being subverted in order to support a byzantine copyright profit scam. I don't need extra laws to ensure that I pay my dues for some people to watch a remake of a story that was itself copped from ancient mythology (now with more CGI and super soap opera yet "gritty" plolt/dialog!). I'll live just fine without mass produced media if it gains me my rights back, thank you very much - and I've done so to some extent for a while now as I 1)do not illegally copy material and thus do not partake of it 3)pay for material not associated with major copyright scamming organizations whenever I can find any that I find appealing.

The underlying, unquestioned foundation of this whole ridiculous system is the idiotic concept that entities are entitled to make money by selling copies of something, regardless of the cost of creating the copies. In this day and age it's ludicrous frankly, and has only gained traction due to a brief period of time when making copies was possible but also costly. Prior to that time, copies were not really available. At this point in time copies are virtually cost free. The natural course of things would be to give up monetizing the act of copying and distributing copies and direct funds back into the hands of those who actually produce works worth copying. Instead these vested interests who fundamentally do nothing productive and get paid tons to do said nothing have taken offense at the idea that there's no need for us to support their obscene life styles and profits anymore. And who can blame them when they've had it so good for these past few decades? And I'm not talking about just the guys at the top here. I'm talking about every PA, bean counter and lawyer having anything to do with the entertainment industry. The entire bloated construct is anathema to true creativity at this point, and definitely anathema to Free culture and society.

Here's an inconvenient truth - if our current corrupt "intellectual property" scam had been in place at the time some guy invented the wheel or fire or language (yeah oversimplification, deal with it), humanity as a whole would be worse off. Imagine paying a "wheel tax" or "fire licensing fee" every time you wanted to drive a car or cook a meal since the dawn of history. Yet that's what these jackals would have us do now.

In short, to those who propagate the "intellectual property" scam - my sentiments are fuck off and die. And that's an inconvenient truth.

Thanks.

Losing the Philosophical Argument (1)

monxrtr (1105563) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400511)

1.) Copyright/Patent Proectionism (C.P.P.) creates artificial unnatural scarcity (by definition less stuff = more poverty) 2.) C.P.P causes innovation in art and science to dramatically stagnate because violence is used to by definition make people deaf, blind, and dumb to what exists in the world 3.) C.C.P. copies prior claims of C.C.P. By refusing to grant C.C.P., claimants get exactly what they ask for (damn copycats trying to copy others for copyright protection :P). 4.) C.C.P. claims are made in a commonly understood language which is not owned by anyone 5.) All C.C.P. claims have hypocritically ripped off ideas of someone else in the past which they have built upon. Logical enforcement of C.C.P. would prohibit new artistic and scientific works (like Harry Potter was the first book to talk about "dragons" and "people flying on broomsticks"). 6.) Ideas are not property. Ideas are not material. Ideas can't be "stolen". 7.) Copying is a legitimate daily human activity of survival and advancement, from walking, talking, eating, to wearing clothing, using wheels, and living in houses with doors and windows. Copying is not a "dirty" word. 8.) Copyright *robs* the freedom of others to do whatever the hell they feel like doing with their own property, whether that property is blank paper or blank digital media. 9.) If you don't want to be copied, STFU. You have the right to remain silent. You do not have the right to impose silence on others. 10.) A big fat hen. It's not even close. I've been around the web and aye yie yie, winning ideas rise to the top and losing ideas fall by the wayside. Copyright/Patent proponents are getting creamed in arguments.

On Art (1)

geekmansworld (950281) | more than 6 years ago | (#19400513)

"Point five is an attempt to turn the "innovation" argument on its head. For years, pundits outside the music industry have accused labels of pandering to teens through boy bands and "manufactured" celebrities instead of being concerned with finding, producing, and releasing art. The IFPI suggests that the labels could (and would) be doing exactly that if file-swapping went away."

Ah yes, much like our movie industry which produces mostly art films and not reel after reel of trashy thrillers, soulless action films and toilet-humor comedy.

"Organized criminal gangs and even terrorist groups use the sale of counterfeit CDs to raise revenue and launder money."

Perfectly rational sounding to me. Definitely no fear-mongering here.

Blaming terrorism and the decline of western culture on file sharing. Does this strike anyone as a new low?
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