The Music Industry, Still Chugging That Kool-Aid


Oh those guys over at the major labels, if they’re not suing 12-year-old girls then they’re making charts like this one for their upcoming case against Lime Group LLC aka LimeWire.

According to Arista Records, Warner Bros. Music Group, and Atlantic Records, the $55 Billion decline in record sales is directly due to the invention of peer-to-peer filesharing sites like Napster and LimeWire.  The record companies went on to state that, “even if LimeWire caused only a fraction of this decline, Plaintiffs’ damages would still be in the billions of dollars.”

Nice try Bill. The truth is this is the very same argument that record companies used when magnetic cassette tapes began to become a staple of your home music set up. They decried that people were no longer going to buy records because they could just tape the music from the radio. Then in the 90’s, I remember hearing the same argument about CD-R and CD-RW burners in home computers.

In 2000, Sony BMG began to include “copy-protection” software that wouldn’t let you play a purchased CD on your home PC without installing a proprietary player. And don’t even think you could rip those songs onto your hard drive for either uploading to your MP3 player or playback on your PC – Sony’s “copy-protection” was designed specifically to prevent you from doing just this.

Sony BMG’s rootkit security system didn’t do too well in Europe and eventually was seen as a violation of consumers’ privacy rights even in the US.

But clearly, it’s LimeWire that cost the Big Three billions of dollars annually. It has nothing to do with the lack of new talent, monotonous b(r)ands, and turning the airwaves into a dribble of payola-ed drones. Clearly, the RIAA’s staunch anti-technology stance had no hand in ensuring that the music industry’s business model stay firmly planted in the proverbial stone age of digital consumption.

For what it’s worth, I guess we can argue that record labels are less concerned in actually earning their sales than they are in ensuring that this recession doesn’t hurt the pockets of their lawyers.

For the full pre-trial brief , click here.

Sources :

The Hollywood Reporter:

4 thoughts on “The Music Industry, Still Chugging That Kool-Aid

  1. The bit about people recording the radio on cassette tapes– totally forgot about this! My Dad used to do that back in the day. He couldn’t figure out for the life of him how to burn CDs though… Looks like SHARING is just the natural progression of the music industry. When will we start standing up for startup companies and innovators on the web when the major labels try to shut them down?

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