RIAA In the News

The popular gadget site Gizmodo has declared March Boycott the RIAA month, saying the very reasons people download music is because of things like the RIAA and DRM. These things keep people from being able to play the music they buy on whatever device they choose to, you have to have an iPod to play tunes from iTunes, a Zune to play music from the Zune Marketplace, etc, and they are right, this is a bunch of crap. Used to be, when you bought your music tapes you could record them on other devices, listen to them however you want but nowadays, that is not the case when you buy music online. If I buy a song from a musician, I should be able to play it wherever I like on whatever device I have, but DRM prevents that, and causes people to download unprotected music online.

Beyond the harassment, extortion, and privacy invasion that the RIAA commits under the guise of lawsuits, they also stifle innovation by treating any open Internet source as a potential way for people to violate their copyrights. Recently, they filed a “motion for reconsideration” in a suit claiming that anything downloaded via an Internet connection is the responsibility of the owner of said connection. While the RIAA is trying to make it easier for them to get money out of the parents of kids they sue, the precedent that it would set would make it difficult, if not impossible, for open WiFi hotspots to exist. That means that the RIAA would make it impossible for you to connect to the web for free while out in a city that provides Internet access merely because you might use it to download music.

In effect, the RIAA’s insistence on strict DRM takes value away from legally purchased music. People have a choice: they can either pirate unrestricted MP3 files that will let them use them however they’d like, or they can pay for files that won’t allow them the freedom to listen where and how they choose. It only makes sense that many tech-savvy people choose to download MP3s rather than pay for crippled files. The RIAA wants people to pay for restrictions and like it. Source: Gizmodo’s Anti-RIAA Manifesto

This is exactly true, Steve Jobs recently called for digital media companies to get rid of the DRM, but that is an easy thing to do when you have nothing to loose, what he should’ve done would be to demand that they drop DRM and let people play their music anywhere, they way it is supposed to be.

In other RIAA news, apparently they don’t like a new bill submitted by Rick Boucher, a Virginia Democrat, and John Doolittle, a California Republican, that would allow consumers to circumvent digital copy restrictions in six limited areas when the copyright owners’ business models are not threatened. This so-called fair use doctrine would allow customers of copyright works to make a limited number of copies, either for reviews, news reporting, teaching and research. The RIAA said this would legalize “hacking”, something else they don’t sound too bright on, look it up fellas.

“The fair use doctrine is threatened today as never before,” Boucher said in a statement. “Historically, the nation’s copyright laws have reflected a carefully calibrated balanced between the rights of copyright owners and the rights of the users of copyrighted material. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act dramatically tilted the copyright balance toward complete copyright protection at the expense of the public’s right to fair use.”

But the RIAA said the bill would effectively repeal the DMCA. The bill would “allow electronics companies to induce others to break the law for their own profit,” it said in a statement. Advances such digital music sales, online games, on-demand movies and e-books can be traced to DMCA protects, the RIAA said. Source: RIAA opposes new fair use bill

Screw the RIAA, these people are going away and they know it, it is easier and easier for artists to create and distribute their own music and other media, it’s just too bad most of it sucks, but, most of the music coming out of those music companies sucks as well. This bill would also limit the statutory damages against individuals and firms who may be found to have engaged in contributory infringement, inducement of infringement, or other indirect infringement.