I don’t think I’ve ever met a person who actually thinks that artists shouldn’t get paid for their work. But the RIAA has clearly lost touch. The idea that consumers can’t share, edit, or even make archival copies of the stuff that they buy is seriously out of touch.
The RIAA has told a court that ripping your CDs to MP3 format is “unauthorized” and illegal, in a brief filed with the Arizona US District Court where Atlantic Records is suing Jeffrey and Pamela Howell. The last time this issue came up, in the Grokster Supreme Court case, the RIAA’s lawyer said that ripping CDs was not illegal and was implicitly authorized by the record labels. Story
The internet has changed the ownership game. Consumers have taken the right to edit, share, customize what they buy and they aren’t going to give it back. It won’t be long before the Supreme Court will have to revisit copyright laws for the internet age because we just don’t have a clue how these old laws work in today’s society. Is the RIAA going to sue every person in the country with a computer and an internet connection?
When the Supreme Court finally comes to its senses and puts this lobby out to pasture, the RIAA will quickly bankrupt itself. Particularly when the major labels start to bolt for a new, better way.
I predict a new organization will become recognized by the recording industry that gets the desires of consumers (Who ultimately fund things like the RIAA) and make sure artists are paid fairly for their work.
At the same time, we need to be responsible consumers and actually buy music instead of stealing it. Artists deserve to be paid, make sure you aren’t part of the problem.