Reports from or about the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the Canadian Recording Industry Association (CRIA) and other regional lobbyists for the legacy methods of creation, distribution and funding of music they represent.

The Future of Music in a Digital World

Just a FYI for those in Toronto on this event.

November 24, 2008 - 7:30 pm to 9:30 pm
Jane Mallett Theatre at StLC
Admission is free


Graham Henderson: president of the Canadian Recording Industry Association

Don Quarles: executive director of the Songwriters Association of Canada

Will Strickland: president of the Urban Music Association of Canada

Byron Kent Wongis a Toronto and Los Angeles-based media producer, musician and entrepreneur

Ad Exec: Payola Can Save Webcasters, Music Business

I strongly disagree with what Ad man Doug Perlson thinks as reported by Eliot Van Buskirk in a Wired blog.

This is exactly the reason why we need payola to be clearly illegal, and the law strongly enforced (how about those caught doing it lose their copyright related rights, so that the copyright reverts to the performer from the label).

File Sharing Lawsuits at a Crossroads, After 5 Years of RIAA Litigation

A Wired Magazine blog article by David Kravets talks about how it is 4 years today that the recording industry started their P2P lawsuits in the USA.

Predictable positions from subset of stakeholders at Brussels telecommunication/copyright event.

Michael Geist has posted an article "The Battle Over Internet Filtering" where he discusses a seminar in Brussels on the "telecoms package" currently before the European Parliament. He listed out some of the views of the stakeholders on issues like DRM, "three strikes and you're out" policies ("graduated response") , "technical mandates", ISP filtering/blocking of infringing content, and stronger cross-border enforcement initiatives (ACTA).

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MediaSentry continued investigating in Michigan without license

An article by Ray Beckerman describes how MediaSentry, the "investigation" arm of the RIAA, has been doing so illegally without a license.

I think it is important for Canadian politicians to hear this, as they may agree with us that what MediaSentry is doing is of a far more serious nature than what they are investigating. I wonder if the major labels inability to find an above-board company that can provide evidence sufficient to win in court is also a factor in why they haven't bothered to file lawsuits in Canadian courts (for activities which are just as illegal in Canada under current law than in the USA).

U2's Bono for human rights, employee McGuinness against?

An amusing article by Steven Musil for cNet:

Four songs from the Irish rock band's forthcoming album found themselves on the Internet after U2 front man Bono was caught playing the songs a bit too loudly on his stereo at his villa in the south of France.

Recording Industry vs The People

For anyone who is not already following it, they should be following commercial litigator and internet law attorney Ray Beckerman's "Recording Industry vs The People" blog. This is where you can following the cases which the recording industry is increasingly losing due to their (and those they hire) questionable investigatory techniques and legal theories. It has been interesting to watch US cases turn the same way as the only Canadian case did: lost due to lack of evidence of infringing activity.

Court orders Quebec file-sharing site shutdown

An article by Graeme Hamilton of the National Post includes:

Quebec Superior Court Justice Pierre Tessier issued the permanent injunction closing on Wednesday and ordered its operator, Sébastien Brulotte, to refrain from being involved in "any technology allowing the download of any work protected by copyright."

Copyright: locks, levies, licensing or lawsuits? Part 2: levies

I have expanded this discussion to include licensing, with this being the obvious option that doesn't get discussed. Sometimes instead of trying to use locks (part 1), levies or lawsuits to enforce a specific business model, that using an alternative licensing mechanism would work better.

I covered the topic of levies before on this blog with an article titled "Analyzing when copyright levies are a good idea, and when they are a very bad idea.". In this article I spoke about what are called "compulsory licenses" where a copyright holder can no longer require permission for an activity, but where a royalty fee is imposed. I gave a suggested test for the extreme situation that warrants such an exception to copyright, and tried to apply this test across a few different proposals (The Songwriters Association of Canada proposal that I support, and the Creators’ Copyright Coalition proposal which I strongly reject).

Read the rest of this entry on IT World Canada's BLOG »

Where is that "buy me now" button for Copyright?

Much of the copyright debate reads like fiction. People supposedly find content on the Internet which has a "buy me now" button and a "take without paying" button, and they choose the latter. The non-fiction version of this story is very different. For the vast majority of content which people can acquire illegally on the Internet, there is no way to purchase the same thing legally. It is very hard to share the "moral outrage" that some entertainment industry lobbiests have been exhibiting, especially since they made deliberate business choices which caused their problems to be far worse.

Read the rest of this entry on IT World Canada »

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