In spite of the challenges brought on by the major paradigm shift, the music industry is obviously bored

A few weeks ago my father asked me whether or not downloading things via Bit Torrent was illegal.  I told him yes, but then launched into my standpoint on the “grey area” of the law.  In short:

  • Music wise, it is essentially akin to my father’s extensive cassette tape collection when I was  a kid, all copies of other people’s vinyl (this sentence just lost any readers born after 1987).
  • I personally found I purchased more music as a result of bit torrent (I do not use it any more) as it allowed me to find more new bands and to not have to take a chance at wasting money on something I don’t like.
  • Downloading TV shows is akin to PRVing (or oldschool VCRing)them and then skipping the commercials.
  • You exceed the speed limit even though you know it is illegal.
  • And so on…

There are a lot of ways to try and justify such actions, but the answer to the question is still “yes, it is in most cases against copyright law and therefore illegal”.

Now we get to the point where I say “who gives a rats ass”.  This article over at Paste details a U.S. Appeals Court ruling that states it is okay to sell promotional CDs.  The initial lawsuit is summarized:

In 2007, Universal Music Group filed a lawsuit against Troy Augusto, a California resident who made money through selling promotional CDs on eBay. UMG argued that they had licensed the CDs to Augusto rather than transferring ownership of the CDs. Because Augusto did not technically “own” these licensed CDs, he had committed copyright infringement through the resales.

You have got to be kidding me.  I get all the attention on file-sharing, but going after someone selling used promotional CDs makes no sense.  What is the perceived damage of continuing to use the promotional CDs to, uh, basically, promote the music further?  Has the lawsuit taken into account any songs on the albums that were released on the Internet for free download, thus adjusting the damage claim by 1/12?

And who is paying attention to the used Sony Minidisc market?  I bet those things are flying across the globe, bringing unauthorized joy to lovers of dead technology.

Don’t forget about the people who are trading used CDs at local shops.  Or the kids sharing ear buds on the same iPod.  Better send out some street enforcers to crack some skulls.

Come on, Music Industry.  Why would anyone want to fall in line with someone so stupid?  If you are worried about how much money you are losing, quit giving it to the lawyers.


About OneGoodMinute
Blogging about the fun and interesting things in life. Nerd stuff - movies, music, comedy, podcasts Social Media - Documenting my way through social media, blogging and online promotion. Learn from my experiences, mistakes and successes.

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