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Could the RIAA Just Disappear?

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the don't-hold-your-breath dept.

Businesses 114

BlueMerle writes "Ars Technica is running a story about how EMI is disappointed with RIAA and ultimately they (RIAA) may disappear. 'Is the RIAA as we know it about to disappear? As rumors continue to swirl that EMI will pull its funding from music trade groups like the RIAA and IFPI, an IFPI spokesman tells Ars that the group is in the middle of a major internal review of its operations.'" I wouldn't bet the farm just yet.

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is it possible? (1)

Presto Vivace (882157) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005032)

Wow, could a trade association pay the ultimate price for engaging in a totally counterproductive strategy that hurt the industry? Could the NFIB be next?

Is this possible? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22005278)

Could niggers just disappear one day too?

Re:is it possible? (5, Informative)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005294)

I hate to point this out, but the lawsuits themselves have generally had the names of the labels on them, not the RIAA. The RIAA is the average Slashdotter's shorthand for "the music industry" (well, kind of shorthand, seriously many of them can't tell the difference.)

The article is about the trade association. The lawsuits are from the industry. The RIAA (the trade association) has had a hand in organizing the lawsuits but ultimately the lawsuits themselves have been pushed by the publishers themselves. The RIAA doesn't even have standing.

So if anyone's reading this as "The RIAA is being punished for all the lawsuits!! No more lawsuits!!!", then, well, they're wrong. The RIAA's primary purpose is lobbying, and I guess the lobbying it does just isn't worth the money being spent on them.

Re:is it possible? And I was going to say... (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005808)

Good Riiadance, Byatches...

But, as for what gets posted, damn it seems awfully cliquish. As in someone can be first submitting, but someone else gets the goods just by posting a different URL and coming up with a slash-baiting jingle.

Maybe to combat this, Slash should rotate submitters and limit them to x-number per month or quarter and put of a "compliance" graph showing that the same, tired old names are sidelined for a while. Well, unless worse submissions run for a while...

Re:is it possible? (1)

ehrichweiss (706417) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006248)

"I hate to point this out, but the lawsuits themselves have generally had the names of the labels on them, not the RIAA."

Isn't it the RIAA who actually represents the labels in court? That's the impression I've gotten.

Re:is it possible? (5, Funny)

edwdig (47888) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006416)

Isn't it the RIAA who actually represents the labels in court? That's the impression I've gotten.

I believe the RIAA represents them collectively in major things, while on the little things its the individual members.

Examples:

RIAA vs XM / Sirius / MP3.com / Random MP3 Player maker

Sony vs 90 Year Old Woman

Warner vs Mountain Hermit

EMI vs 10 year old girl

Re:is it possible? (2, Funny)

jimbojw (1010949) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006276)

  • Some kid: Do not try and attack the RIAA, that's impossible. Instead, only try and realize the truth.
  • Slashdotter: What truth?
  • Some kid: There is no RIAA.

Re:is it possible? (4, Funny)

wiredlogic (135348) | more than 6 years ago | (#22007746)

The RIAA's primary purpose is lobbying, and I guess the lobbying it does just isn't worth the money being spent on them.

Huh, and here I was thinking the RIAA was supposed to be a standards body promulgating a common equalization curve for grooved recordings. Will wonders never cease.

Re:is it possible? (1)

smurgy (1126401) | more than 6 years ago | (#22009900)

Agreed, but it still possibly signals a distancing move on the part of the labels from the collection of strategies they've been following with regard to DRM - and when read in conjunction with such other signs [slashdot.org] suggests a definite move rather than a bit of "oh it wasn't us being so mean to the consumers" rhetoric.

The purpose of RIAA lobbying is to create a legislative environment in which a body of pro-DRM case law can develop, therefore removing that lobbying is a meaningful act within the context in which the lawsuits take place.

Re:is it possible? (5, Insightful)

badasscat (563442) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005300)

Did anyone here - including the submitter - bother reading beyond the first paragraph of the article?

This is not about the RIAA disappearing as in "going away". This is about the RIAA and IFPI merging operations. This would probably actually make things worse, because the combined agency would be larger, would have jurisdiction over more than just the United States, and would continue doing its current work.

It's about finding ways of consolidating operations. And like a company that does this successfully, the resulting agency could actually end up stronger than the RIAA as it currently exists.

Re:is it possible? (5, Funny)

ePhil_One (634771) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005546)

Did anyone here - including the submitter - bother reading beyond the first paragraph of the article?

You must be new here...

It had to be said, I'm so sorry...

Re:is it possible? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22005802)

Well, having read the entire article and the linked articles I respectfully disagree that this is about the RIAA and IFPI merging. The merger is really beside the point and doesn't seem to be EMI's idea or goal.

The RIAA is effectively an (effective) oligopoly and in that sense it is disappearing. EMI, having new owners, being the first of these labels to sell their tracks without DRM, and now questioning the value of the RIAA and IFPI clearly seems to realize that this oligopoly as it stands is no longer of benefit to them.

That's not to say that a restructured RIAA/IFPI won't become an effective oligopoly as well or that this is what the submitter was addressing, but this very well could mean the RIAA is 'going away' and it is a clear indication that the RIAA in its current (i.e. anti-consumer) form is going away.

Re:is it possible? (0, Redundant)

ParaShoot (992496) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006560)

Well, having read the entire article and the linked articles
Woah, someone's new here.

I respectfully disagree
Respectfully? This is Slashdot! The only acceptable kind of reply to another comment is an angry argumentative one, preferably including personal insults! (Bonus points if you get first post and still manage this.)

Re: Great Idea (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006978)


We could power a Car Analogy off the engine of First Post angry replies to other comments.

Re:is it possible? (2, Insightful)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 6 years ago | (#22008388)

That's not to say that a restructured RIAA/IFPI won't become an effective oligopoly as well or that this is what the submitter was addressing, but this very well could mean the RIAA is 'going away' and it is a clear indication that the RIAA in its current (i.e. anti-consumer) form is going away.


Sure, now that Big Media has pretty much got the developed world's governments in their pocket. The real story here is that soon the Big Media/Big Pharma candidate will be replacing our Big Oil president, so the tactics employed by the RIAA up to now will soon be obsolete. Why spend the money to maintain a private goon squad when the Feds are happy to accept the contract?

Re:is it possible? (1)

kabocox (199019) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006158)

This is not about the RIAA disappearing as in "going away". This is about the RIAA and IFPI merging operations. This would probably actually make things worse, because the combined agency would be larger, would have jurisdiction over more than just the United States, and would continue doing its current work.

Well, from the Record Industry's point of view "disappearing" or "renaming" RIAA to something else or merging it with any other org so their name gets changed but mission is basically the same would be a good thing. RIAA is bad/evil towards little girls and little old ladys. No one likes that organization. So what to do to fix that? Rename it as something else and keep doing the same things.

Re:is it possible? (2, Funny)

init100 (915886) | more than 6 years ago | (#22009444)

the combined agency would ... have jurisdiction over more than just the United States

Neither the RIAA nor the IFPI has any jurisdiction anywhere, since they are not parts of the justice system (police and courts).

Here's to hoping! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22005042)

*bets farm*

Re:Here's to hoping! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22005194)

Other trade associations I'd like to see die:

1) BSA
2) MPAA

Re:Here's to hoping! (1)

OECD (639690) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005456)

Love to see it happen, doubt it will. They may renegotiate their fees, but there's too much benefit to the lobbying muscle of a *AA organization for them to ditch it entirely.

Hope I'm wrong, though.

Re:Here's to hoping! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22006438)

Hey! What do you have against the Boy Scouts of America?

Re:Here's to hoping! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22007174)

Hey! What do you have against the Boy Scouts of America?
Not the Boy Scouts, I have no issues against them. My problem is with the other BSA: Business Software Alliance. Those assholes make the RIAA and MPAA seem like a nice likable organization. Don't believe me? Google "bsa audit". Fuck them.

Re:Here's to hoping! (1)

Torvaun (1040898) | more than 6 years ago | (#22009400)

Does it have to just disappear? I'd rather see it be ripped apart by a horde of savage meerkats or something. I'd PPV that.

Re:Here's to hoping! (1)

Gandalf_Greyhame (44144) | more than 6 years ago | (#22012158)

Does it have to just disappear? I'd rather see it be ripped apart by a horde of savage meerkats or something. I'd PPV that.

Hey, can you copy it and post a torrent for us?

No! Don't go RIAA! (4, Funny)

pwnies (1034518) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005052)

Your antics make me laugh! Who else could pull off an attempt to sue someone for downloading files who doesn't have a computer?!

I doubt it (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22005062)

Look, I'm no fan of RIAA, but RIAA serves a very important purpose for the recording industry et al, and this is just a bluff/power move by EMI. EMI is getting pissy because RIAA went against them in the Kingston/Dracon case (refusing to follow EMI's wishes). Now EMI is threatening to pull the plug on RIAA.

EMI is acting like a miffed 6 year old. They'll come around.

Always bet on black? No, bet on RIAA.

Re:I doubt it (1)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006572)

RIAA serves a very important purpose for the recording industry et al

What important purpose? Helping them buy politicians more efficiently? That may be an important purpose for them, but I'm not going to cry overmuch if it collapses.

Well.... (1)

Vexor (947598) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005066)

We all know they will eventually disappear. The question is: Will anyone care?

Hint: NO!

Re:Well.... (-1, Troll)

BoomerSooner (308737) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005248)

Jesus cares. So long as you've accepted him as your lord and savior. Otherwise, his fragile ego is shattered and you're sent to hell for eternity.

Re:Well.... (2, Insightful)

owlnation (858981) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006766)

I care if they disappear. I don't want them to disappear. I want them to be destroyed spectacularly. I want their grandchildren to remember their shame.

Disappearing is not nearly painful enough.

Re:Well.... (1)

Sanat (702) | more than 6 years ago | (#22007626)

Hey... what happened to forgiveness?

Well, (1)

Samalie (1016193) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005068)

We could only dream this would happen. Thank god someone in the industry is realizing that this go for the throat, fuck the consumer attitude of the RIAA is just driving business away.

Bill Hicks' God (0, Flamebait)

airos4 (82561) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005072)

"Please, God... reach down and pinch my butt cheeks!" EIGHT YEARS OF PRAYER. Does everyone who got extorted get their cash back? Can they sue for it?

RIAA ? (4, Interesting)

Nossie (753694) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005090)

The way things are going in the UK we wont need the equivalent of the RIAA to do the music industries dirty work... we'll have the government.

So is this really that big a story? or are they just reallocating their resources?

no need for them in todays age (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22005096)

set up a website sell your MP3's/Flac/Wav direct to your fans (FOSS could help if there was an easy music selling application that runs on PHP/Cheap Hosting) Profit ! RIAA are just another middleman, cut them out thats what the internet is for !

will they disappear? (0)

Coraon (1080675) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005174)

I think I speak for all of slashdot when I say, "from your lips (or keystrokes) to the gods ears (assuming they exists and they have ears)"

No, they wont disappear. (1)

Medenus (1189293) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005182)

Considering they just got a donation of $1 billion from a private donor, according to a /. Firehose entry (it must be said that this entry does not have any supporting evidence and follow-up searches return no evidence) http://slashdot.org/firehose.pl?op=view&id=463124 [slashdot.org]

Answer: Yes (5, Insightful)

imstanny (722685) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005188)

With Sony BMG deal, Amazon will offer unlocked MP3s from all major labels.


RIAA days are numbered.

Re:Answer: Yes (2, Insightful)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005350)

There is speculation that Apple, Inc. will be announcing the same as well. As soon as DRM goes away on iTunes, DRM will go away forever (for music tracks at least).

Re:Answer: Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22005644)

How do you figure? Because the labels offer unprotected music you suddenly think they won't have a need for a trade organization (which is what the RIAA is)? So I'm assuming you used the same logic to conclude that before mp3s existed that the RIAA didn't exist, too?

Seek professional help (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22005794)

If you think the recording industry is giving up on suing people, you are seriously deluded. But then, most people who claim to hate the RIAA really only hate the fact that they are getting caught and can't get free music. They come up with some huge rationalization about why it's ok for them to take music without paying for it, and complain that they are being treated unfairly for breaking the law. So they are essentially very deluded people to begin with.

Re:Seek professional help (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22006444)

Die in a fire, cocksucker.

Re:Answer: Yes (1)

ucblockhead (63650) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006974)

The one has little to do with the other. Just because they'll give you files without DRM doesn't mean they won't sue your ass if you put those MP3s in a shared folder on Kazaa.

RIAA says... (5, Funny)

idontgno (624372) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005218)

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

Re:RIAA says... (1)

GMFTatsujin (239569) | more than 6 years ago | (#22011530)

So ... what, exactly? It'll show up as a glowing blue Force ghost and say "I told you it would all work out" every so often?

I'm okay with that.

If the RIAA disappeared... (1)

notgm (1069012) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005222)

If the RIAA disappeared, who could counter-suits be filed against? Is it conceivable that as the legal tide turned, EMI could pull the plug in an attempt to evade responsibility?

Re:If the RIAA disappeared... (2, Informative)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005296)

If the RIAA disappeared, who could counter-suits be filed against?

The RIAA isn't filing lawsuits, their members are. If EMI sues you, then you countersue EMI.

But countersuing Sony would be lots more fun.

Re:If the RIAA disappeared... (1)

notgm (1069012) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005394)

you're right, i hadn't realized that at first. the RIAA does engage in some questionable tactics, however, like the cease and desist/settlement/'who's IP is this?' letters - any chance that they could be named as parties in a counter-suit, or in some other nasty legal activities?

Re:If the RIAA disappeared... (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005726)

The individual labels are listed as the plaintiffs in the lawsuits. However, they are represented in court by the RIAA.

Yes. Here's Proof: (3, Informative)

imstanny (722685) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005226)

http://www.billboard.biz/bbbiz/content_display/industry/e3i84e2bdeac2bc80912b76d9dd4d565fb6 [billboard.biz]

With Sony BMG deal, Amazon will offer unlocked MP3s from all major labels. RIAA days are numbered...

Re:Yes. Here's Proof: (1)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005850)

What's a locked MP3?

Re:Yes. Here's Proof: (1)

Sanat (702) | more than 6 years ago | (#22007684)

Nobody really knows because it is locked... sigh

Re:Yes. Here's Proof: (1)

Anti RIAA DJ (1211796) | more than 6 years ago | (#22010340)

I like proof pudding... lol :) All i can say is Yay!!! -Anti RIAA DJ "...the real crime is paying for the crap you sell..." -American Lesley Jane

Re:Yes. Here's Proof: (1)

morphiussys (1017948) | more than 6 years ago | (#22010378)

Indeed!!

Dis? Appearance! (-1, Offtopic)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005234)

I looked up record company [uncyclopedia.org] and it appears that such an item as a "record company" doesn't, in fact, exist since there is no record of it in uncyclopedia.

"Disappearance" doesn't exist either, which makes sense in a wierd, potsmoking kind of way.

the RIAA [uncyclopedia.org] still exists even though record companies apparently don't. The uncyclopedia says about the RIAA:

The RIAA, short for "Recording Industry Assholes of America" is a tyrannical facist regime which resides in the continental United States and enjoys the full support of the United States Government, the Catholic Church, Oprah's Book Club and a variety of other evil organizations. Founded in 1952 by demons from hell, the RIAA's only purpose is to make people miserable, especially those who record and/or enjoy music. The current demon who runs the RIAA is known as Bitch Mainwol, son of Mog'var der Destroyer.

The RIAA's primary mission is to stifle what little artistic merit is left in the United States by making virtually everybody who has ever recorded or listened to music pay out the ass. Their primary means of accomplishing this goal is the use of stormtroopers thought police lawyers. Due to their heavyhanded tactics, they have made many enemies, including God, Girl God, Jesus, Ultraman and a jar of almonds. The RIAA operates in close cooperation with the MPAA; they are considering uniting their organizations to form a single group known as the Music And Film Industry Association of America (MAFIAA).

Hey downloaders! Enter the Music Mystery Contest sponsored by the RIAA. You won't regret it.
However, even though many of the activities in my journal [slashdot.org] , such as smoking pot, banging hookers, and downloading music from archive.org are illegal, reading it is still legal. Not that you would actually want to or anything.

-mcgrew

PS- smoking pot has nothing on huffing kittens. [uncyclopedia.org] The orange ones fuck you up real good.

Not betting farm but will put up the cows (4, Insightful)

prelelat (201821) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005308)

I wouldn't bet the farm that the RIAA will disappear they are too important to the music industry, as they should be. I think that the RIAA has gotten side tracked on the real issues of music piracy and needs to stop attacking the consumers. It is the large pirates the ones that are actually making fake discs and selling them for a profit that need to be stopped, as they should. Turning off large sites that share music illegally should also be targeted. Music shouldn't be free or you wouldn't have an industry, but on that same note you don't alienate your consumers by making them feel like criminals(even if they just rip their CD to their MP3 player).

I think what is really important is that their is an internal review going on, maybe a large shakeup will ensue and we can hope to get everything back to the way it should be. Protecting users from fake copies of albums, and protecting musicians from mass pirating. Your always going to have an underground community, you're just going to have to make sure your product is superior and stop the major counterfeiters.

Re:Not betting farm but will put up the cows (3, Informative)

ghyd (981064) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006214)

This Economist article http://economist.com/business/displaystory.cfm?story_id=10498664 [economist.com] paints an even bleaker future for the recording industry. So the last part of your post seems the most probable.

Re:Not betting farm but will put up the cows (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22008392)

You know... You are SO RIGHT. Art and music /never/ existed before rich white assholes were getting paid millions for doing things that are decidedly uncreative. Beethoven would never have been so cherished if he hadn't been signed to Sony.

Re:Not betting farm but will put up the cows (2, Insightful)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 6 years ago | (#22008554)

Music shouldn't be free or you wouldn't have an industry...


Yes, and lord knows capitalism is the only way one can make a living and besides it's your god-given right.

Oy vey - deprogrammers needed!

Re:Not betting farm but will put up the cows (3, Insightful)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 6 years ago | (#22008718)

Music shouldn't be free or you wouldn't have an industry...

Music doesn't need an industry to survive, or even thrive. Distribution is no longer an issue, except to those who wish to control it. Production will always be profitable, if enough people like what you produce.

Re:Not betting farm but will put up the cows (1)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 6 years ago | (#22009758)

Perhaps the RIAA become more about making money for the RIAA, it's executives and it's lawyers and the RIAA members and the members customers where all just targets to squeezed for as much money as possible.

It is obvious that the RIAA has caused a considerable amount of harm to the image of the recording industry, as well as affiliated organisations like the MPAA and the motion picture industry.

The most damaging thing of all, it has brought a new 'public' focus on the whole principle of copyright, on how long it should last, what should the penalties be for infringing it, how copyright protection is obtained and most interestingly on what should or should not have copyright protection. Now that has been by far the most significant thing the RIAA has actually managed to achieve as damaging as it may be to their mass media suckers 'er' masters.

I wouldn't bet the farm just yet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22005312)

...but I would bet a pig and four chickens, if you were laying good odds.

Dentists (0, Offtopic)

stewbacca (1033764) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005320)

I'm always leery of my dentist, because he provides me with lots of advice on how to make my dental hygiene better. This, in turn, results in less visits from me, and ultimately less money for him. Thankfully, EMI is the "dentist" of the recording industry. The world needs more dentists.

Sorry, I RTFA (5, Insightful)

liak12345 (967676) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005352)

If that happens, the "RIAA" might disappear even as its work continues.
Same shit. Different name.

Re: Same ___ Different Name (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 6 years ago | (#22007134)

Like Napster?

"The customers took down the Central Lawsuit Server, so they went distributed. Now you have no idea how many fragments of the former RIAA there are, and you can never be sure you've got them all."

No... (2, Funny)

Anita Coney (648748) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005356)

The music industry needs a lobby group to bribe the government to stamp out evils such as net and satellite radio.

What's the replacement? (4, Insightful)

compumike (454538) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005358)

So EMI will no longer farm out its enforcement duties to the RIAA. That's the entire point of the article. There's nothing to imply that they won't continue to protect their intellectual property. Just don't get all excited, now.

There's a few things that still have to change:
1) Copyright should be reduced in duration.
2) The penalties must be adjusted to be reasonable.
3) People must come to respect the rights of property holders, not violate them blindly. Copyright has lots of negative impliciations when well beyond the term of commercial viability, but I believe that copyright can be adjusted to accomodate both that and the property rights of the creator.
4) Slashdot-crowd must abandon the notion that "not-for-profit" redistribution of someone else's work should be permitted without permission of the rights holder.

--
Our microcontroller kit. Your code. Instructional guide and free videos. [nerdkits.com]

Re:What's the replacement? (4, Insightful)

dada21 (163177) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005716)

Insightful comment, but a lot of what you propose will have no effect:

1) Copyright should be reduced in duration.

Copyright in the digital age is dead and quite useless. As laborers realize that their real income comes from billing for labor to-be-done, rather than billing for labor already-done, copyright will quickly dissolve to being useless. Artists are laborers, and those who realize that their future incomes will be derived from that which can't be easily duplicated by others will be the ones who profit and stay in business. Performing live is something that others can't easily mimic. Supply and demand, friends. There's a near limitless supply of digital content, so the price falls to near zero. There's a VERY finite supply of the time a specific artist can perform, so their income will come from selling that time to fans (i.e., live concerts or performances). Yes, this creates a real dilemma for writers, but I believe that MOST readers will prefer the artist's accepted printed book rather than the knock-off.

2) The penalties must be adjusted to be reasonable.

The penalties for being caught violating copyright are the least important factor in the situation. The time, and money, spent fighting a legal battle against an organization with a scale of income many MANY times higher than the defendant are the real costs. If you are found guilty of a civil violation, you declare bankruptcy and the judgment goes away. You don't get back the years, and tens of thousands of dollars, that you lost fighting to save your name. Reducing penalties will likely not fix this problem.

3) People must come to respect the rights of property holders, not violate them blindly.

OK, I won't steal the physical CD you have. The minute that I use my labor to duplicate something else, that product is mine. If I see you made a neat toilet, and I spend my hours buying porcelain, laying it into a form, and making my own toilet, you should have little control over how I move my arms, and use my mind, to duplicate the product that I want. Copyright, and other intellectual property restrictions, do little to promote new content or creations. The biggest wall for content creators is distribution, not creation. Millions, even billions of people create content, but only a few are able to distribute it.

I respect the rights of PHYSICAL property holders, but I see no reason why they should control how I think or use my body and tools.

4) Slashdot-crowd must abandon the notion that "not-for-profit" redistribution of someone else's work should be permitted without permission of the rights holder.

Actually, the "not-for-profit" redistribution and re-creation of another person's original thoughts is a positive for the original creator, as it is a free form of marketing and advertising for them. Artists who tour regularly should LOVE people duplicating their digital works to friends and family and co-workers. Studio time is akin to the time (and money) one spends going to college or getting another education. It is what you DO with that education (i.e. studio time) as a long term labor that dictates how you get paid for your education.

Just because a guy spent 4 years in college doesn't mean I should pay him $50,000 a year. Just because a band spent 4 years working on an album doesn't mean that their recorded work is worth a single penny to me. The laws of supply and demand, while restricted by ridiculous IP laws, will still win out in the long run.

The RIAA is worthless, and many bands that I work with and am friends with realize that already. The only bands who care are the ones who sold their souls to their management companies in exchange for access to the monopolized distribution sectors (radio, TV, large distro magazines) which are already going the way of the do-do. Radio, TV and large distro mags will soon be worthless in the next digital era.

Re:What's the replacement? (2, Insightful)

Microlith (54737) | more than 6 years ago | (#22007820)

1

The cost for most works today is not in the duplication but in the production. What you describe essentially dooms any artform that can't be performed live, which is a huge number versus the handful that can. It affects more than just writers, it affects anyone whose works can be or are digital in nature.

And no, most people will go for the cheapest version available which will always be the knockoff, be it physical or digital, because they have only the cost of duplication (which is trivial or non-existent, mind you.) Versus the original creator, who has to shoulder the costs of production along with duplication.

This statement gets me:

As laborers realize that their real income comes from billing for labor to-be-done, rather than billing for labor already-done, copyright will quickly dissolve to being useless.

Well, we have this for manual labor today. But then, the houses are built under the auspices of being sold later. You don't expect them to only build on-demand lest they be confiscated upon completion if unsold?

Artists are laborers, and those who realize that their future incomes will be derived from that which can't be easily duplicated by others will be the ones who profit and stay in business.

Copyright gives us the advantage by which we can make a venture on a work of art, whereby we can create something that may not be in demand. This allows artists to gather funding and produce a work without being beholden to someone else's vision. This involves risk but currently copyright allows some way of recovering that risk.

Ignoring copyright throws mud on the efforts of those who honestly do the work, and eliminating it needlessly reduces the amount of work today.

Note that I did not say eliminates. Some people would still create works, but it'd be considerably less (and lower budget) than currently.

2

I agree that the penalties should be reduced significantly.

3

Sure, then you can re-record the song by re-playing all the instruments and re-mastering the audio. Or re-filming that film. Or re-animating that work of animation. Or re-staging and acting out that play. Your copying of a file from one folder to another does not constitute what you just described, and the rest can be solved by limiting duration of copyright to more reasonable levels.

4
It's also a reproduction done without authorization that can (and will) compete with the legit copies in distribution. Make your choice: the free torrent or the physical CD. One compensates the artist and the other doesn't. Huge numbers choose the free torrent, while a handful choose the CD.

Just because a guy spent 4 years in college doesn't mean I should pay him $50,000 a year. Just because a band spent 4 years working on an album doesn't mean that their recorded work is worth a single penny to me. The laws of supply and demand, while restricted by ridiculous IP laws, will still win out in the long run.

If the guy who spent 4 years in college can do what you need done, then you need to pay him. Is it $48000? $52000? If you don't pay him what he's asking he'll take his abilities and go elsewhere. I'm sure if copyright was eliminated a lot of people producing works (good and bad) would do the same. And if that album isn't worth a single penny to you, then you obviously don't like it so don't listen to it. Except you do like it, and are just too cheap to contribute to their efforts.

This reads like the typical "all media must be free, and if it isn't we'll make it free" that I see here a lot. It explicitly sets up a situation where the creators end up holding the bag on costs, while the "people" get the work with no obligation. It's a sure fire scenario to really, really cut down on the number of works that are being made, a situation that leaves us intellectually poorer than fixing copyright would.

But first, both sides need to stop being so greedy.

Re:What's the replacement? (1)

peektwice (726616) | more than 6 years ago | (#22008146)

IMHO, an album that takes 4 years is probably going to be worth paying for. The shit-crop of "music" that the RIAA members are currently pumping out at a rate of two or more per year per "artist" is not. Your point still holds, but I wanted to do that "the kids these days don't know good music" think.

Re:What's the replacement? (3, Interesting)

Damon Tog (245418) | more than 6 years ago | (#22008466)

"Supply and demand, friends. There's a near limitless supply of digital content, so the price falls to near zero."
This does not mean that music should be free, it means that today's "a la carte" method of selling music is obsolete.

A rough comparision would be to the cable industry. When you subscribe to cable, you are not forced to pay for each television show that you watch, you simply pay a flat rate and watch as much as you want. This is how recorded music must now be "sold."

Musicians and labels should license their recordings to cell phone companies and ISPs for a flat rate and allow people to download as much as they want. In fact, this is already happening with Nokia's "Comes with Music" program.

Re:What's the replacement? (1)

RicardoGCE (1173519) | more than 6 years ago | (#22009438)

OK, I won't steal the physical CD you have. The minute that I use my labor to duplicate something else, that product is mine. If I see you made a neat toilet, and I spend my hours buying porcelain, laying it into a form, and making my own toilet, you should have little control over how I move my arms, and use my mind, to duplicate the product that I want. Copyright, and other intellectual property restrictions, do little to promote new content or creations. The biggest wall for content creators is distribution, not creation. Millions, even billions of people create content, but only a few are able to distribute it.
And you're welcome to write your own songs, books, or even produce your own movies.

Look, if you build your own toilet, you're replicating a template. If you digitally copy a song, film, novel, whatever, you're not copying a design, you're appropriating a unique expression of it. It's not like hand-crafting your own version of an existing product at all, which is why I wish people participating in this sort of debate would give up trying to draw analogies to physical products.

Re:What's the replacement? (1)

ProteusQ (665382) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005824)

4) Slashdot-crowd must abandon the notion that "not-for-profit" redistribution of someone else's work should be permitted without permission of the rights holder.
Do you make any distinction between sharing between friends and anonymous P2P? If so, what if anything needs to change in regards to libraries, especially libraries with digital content?

That's still an excellent development (1)

Weaselmancer (533834) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006548)

So EMI will no longer farm out its enforcement duties to the RIAA.

So if you countersue, your suit will actually be applied to the person who brought the suit in the first place and not their disposable puppet.

This is why mob bosses contract hits out - makes it harder for the law to find them. What we have here is a mob boss who is unhappy with his hitman and is going to do his own hits. Should make it easier for the law to reach the responsible party.

It would be a layer off the onion at least, which would help.

Re:What's the replacement? (1)

Samizdata (1093963) | more than 6 years ago | (#22008980)

Not entirely, it seems. The impression I had from the article was that the RIAA would cease to exist as the RIAA, per se. What we would end up with is an new organization built from the ashes of older organizations, very probably employing many of the same people and tactics. Music will not be free then either and we will have a whole new acronym to hate.

Yes (2, Insightful)

Smordnys s'regrepsA (1160895) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005386)

If by "disappear" you mean disband, only to have the exact same people start up another, less publicly hated, organization.

My only real hope is that they decide to be less evil in their new incarnation.

And Just Like That (0, Offtopic)

kaellinn18 (707759) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005460)

*POOF*

They're gone...

In twenty years, the RIAA is going to be a spook story that criminals tell their kids at night. "Rat on your pop, and the RIAA is going to come and serve you with a lawsuit!"

they will disappear regardless (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005818)

they are already irrelevant. in an era of cassette tapes and cds, yes, the riaa was relevant. the copyrigh skirting players were few, and they were slow. but their mission statement in an era of point and click distribution is impossible to fulfill, where no one plays by the rules, and the rules themselves are defunct and antiquated

so the only question about their disappearance is will it be gradual, as those who fund them slowly wither away themselves, or will it be quick and dramatic, as those who fund them get a glimmer of insight in their final years of existence as economic forces

adios assholes

In other news ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22005820)

In other news ...

Could the MPAA just disappear?
Could Microsoft just disappear?
Could Fred Thompson just disappear?
Could car analogies just disappear?

Record labels could disappear, too (4, Insightful)

Dmala (752610) | more than 6 years ago | (#22005834)

I really think the record labels should go away along with the RIAA. They were a necessary evil when recording, distribution, marketing had huge upfront costs. Technological advancements have made professional recording orders of magnitude cheaper, and the Internet has done the same for distribution and marketing.

Except for the very top tier, artists make very little from record sales. Why bother? Just give the music away for free and make money the way artists have for a long time: from live performances and merchandising. Consumers will be happy, artists will do as well as or better than they ever have, and all of this foolishness will go away. A bunch of greedy record execs will be looking for work, but will anyone care?

Too bad the RIAA won't have a grave... (1, Funny)

thewiz (24994) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006032)

If it did, I'd piss on it!

Too fricking much making my brain hurt! (3, Interesting)

earlymon (1116185) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006206)

Ok, let me try to add this up. As I recall, internet radio was threatened by the bully-arm of the RIAA, SoundExchange, forcing royalty payments even for non-RIAA affiliated artists (or however the legally correct way to express that, if there is one). Remember this one, gang? http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=07/04/29/0335224 [slashdot.org]

So, how does this add up? Does EMI pulling away from RIAA defang SoundExchange thereby seriously reducing the threat to internet radio? Or in the ironic comedy of the new century, does the RIAA, with sounds of a death rattle (added for drama, I'm shameless), turn around and unleash SoundExchange on EMI and bring suit under the same grounds as the attack on internet radio?

Obvious reason (1)

ijakings (982830) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006566)

I think the obvious reason behind this is that the RIAA is getting huge negative press and judges are starting to get royally ticked off with them.

The RIAA will just be replaced with a new organization with the same goals just with a different name.

Don't Give Me Wet Dreams (2, Insightful)

HermMunster (972336) | more than 6 years ago | (#22006778)

I don't purchase music any more due to the RIAA suing people, period! If they disappear and we can get past this idea that everyone is a thief, then maybe, just maybe, I'd buy music again.

Not holding breath. (1)

Neanderthal Ninny (1153369) | more than 6 years ago | (#22007192)

I'm not holding my breath on this one and if I did I'll look like a Smurf. The RIAA will re-incarnate into another form so that the RIAA as is is now will become something else doing something similar under a different name like ASS (Association of Seventy-Eight Service).

EMI needs to save maoney... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22007642)

Why don't EMI want to fund RIAA, look at the financials:

  EMI Group reports revenue of £867.9m compared to £924.6m in the prior year, adecline of 4.1% at constant currency.
  Group digital revenues grew by 68.4% at constant currency, totalling £73.7m in the first half. Digital revenues represented 8.5% of total
Group revenues, significantly up from 5.4% in the financial year ended 31 March 2006.
  EMI Music revenues declined by 5.2% at constant currency, largely reflecting the phasing of the planned release schedule which, as previously indicated, has a greater weighting to the second half of the financial year. Digital revenues grew by 78.2% at constant currency, representing
9.4% of total divisional revenues in the half.

The RIAA doesn't provide a return on the investment, they are only making money on downloads, they have to buy in to digital music fully to survive. They might be the first major to wake up to the fact fully.

RIAA=roll back the clock (1)

christurkel (520220) | more than 6 years ago | (#22007850)

Any new RIAA could simply go back to what it was before they became litigation central: A place that spent its money promoting music in general and handing out those gold records, compiling statistics, etc.

And yet... (3, Insightful)

Gewalt (1200451) | more than 6 years ago | (#22008036)

And yet... EMI is still the only label offering content in iTunes+. That's the DRM free side of iTunes, btw.

So it doesn't look like RIAA is going to go away, its just likely to lose 25% of its membership body. Well, even less than that, since EMI doesn't actually possess 25% market share.

EMI has been going against its brethren for a while now. Let us hope they don't fail...

No surprise (1)

Bootarn (970788) | more than 6 years ago | (#22008238)

I'm not one bit surprised. Apparently EMI is realising that the RIAA's failing to organise the music industry, now that file sharing is more popular than ever. RIAA is simply too old to keep up in this new world of free information exchange and can no longer support itself upon the ageing copyright laws of the present.
At least, that's my theory.

Gravy Train Runs Out Of Steam . . . (1)

Twitchie (1023865) | more than 6 years ago | (#22008348)

This was a long-time in coming. It didn't make financial sense. Look. The major record labels have been pumping million$ into the RIAA for years. In return, they've sued 10 year old girls and, on many cases, gotten a $2,000 settlement. Hmmm. Millions for thousands? If a car company did this they'd be called Ford - and be in just as bad a financial state. It's pushed their customers to more cost-effective means of acquiring music - i.e. iTunes. "We don't like the way our customers use our product so let's sue them to make them act right." Yeah, that worked. Despite the RIAA's best spinning, CD sales are still tanking. Why buy a CD for 3 good songs and 12 crappy ones for $12 when you can go to iTunes and get the 3 good ones for $3??? Ummm, duh!! The lawyers and lobbyists have been riding this gravy train for years just sitting back and laughing at the dumb record execs they've fooled into accepting the $2,000 settlements as progress and justification for the million$ they've supported them with. Is it any surprise that finally someone looked at the books and said "Wait a gosh darn minute! Something here looks a bit fishy. Ms. Jenkins - what's all this red ink about on the bottom line???" I think EMI is the first to demand change and the others will soon follow suit . . . no pun intended.

mo,d down (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22008434)

'I have to kiil are having trouble

no, you'd have to douse RIAA with buckets of water (1)

swschrad (312009) | more than 6 years ago | (#22008472)

no idea if their flying monkeys would go away, but the RIAA would.

and their little dog, too.

mod 0p (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22008868)

for a mOment and not going home

Whoo hoo! (1)

StarWreck (695075) | more than 6 years ago | (#22009004)

If this actually happens, then I should be able to buy EMI music again without moral objections.

AARI (2, Funny)

moxley (895517) | more than 6 years ago | (#22009184)

If they do, they'll probably take a hint from our corrupt ass government (with whom these corporations are likely in bed with) and resurface 2 months later as the:

AARI (with a new logo and everything)...

Gee!! Who would have thought....... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22009588)

that suing your user base, alienates them!!!! Boy does that come out of left field!!! RIAA might be droppped because what the music industry thought(because of thier egos)would scare the consumer into not downloading music. Instead it has become a PR nightmare and pushed customers away. I don't even hear about people downloading anymore....except from the companies. I hear people are looking elsewhere for music, not buying because of RIAA, not buying new muscic in favor of older stuff, or not buying because mainstream music has become cliche and predictable. I'm willing to bet there's a lot of people in the music industry MFing Metallica right now.

Old news (1)

bgspence (155914) | more than 6 years ago | (#22010526)

I pulled my funding of the RIAA over a year ago.

No new music for me.

don't tease (1)

azenpunk (1080949) | more than 6 years ago | (#22011896)

dont tease me like that

You know what they say... (1)

JavaBasedOS (1217930) | more than 6 years ago | (#22012428)

To copy from one is plagiarism. To copy from many is research.
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