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Old 10-04-2007, 01:22 AM   #61
JSWolf
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When Napster first came out, it was big. And CD sales were up 6%. The RIAA went after Napster and got it shut down. Goodbye sales. Plus, raising prices also killed off a lot of sales. I remember when you could purchase CDs for $9.99. Now you pay $12.99-$16.99. That's stupid. You don't raise prices higher then the national average and expect to sell more.
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Old 10-04-2007, 04:18 AM   #62
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Originally Posted by nekokami View Post
Last I heard, a Harvard study had suggested that file-sharers are actually buying more content, not less. I don't know what other (industry-independent) studies have been done in this area, though.
I suspect that this is one of those quirks of statistics - if you look at how many CDs a randomly selected file-sharer buys vs a randomly selected non-file-sharer you may find that the file-sharer buys more, but that may be because a file-sharer is more into music than a non-file-sharer.

However, if you look at a group who are all into music - say the attendees of a music concert - and then compare the number of CDs bought between the file-sharers and non-file-sharers in that group then you might find that the file-sharers buy fewer CDs.

Oh the joys of statistics, you can make them say whatever you want them to.
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Old 10-04-2007, 04:25 AM   #63
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Lies, damn lies and statistics
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Old 10-04-2007, 09:31 AM   #64
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Believe me, I'm well aware of the ways in which statistics can be misleading. (I'm taking an advanced research design class right now, and we're reviewing selection and sampling design flaws.)

The Harvard study results were more clear than I made them sound in my original post. See the details here:

http://www.hno.harvard.edu/gazette/2...lesharing.html

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Quote:
Oberholzer-Gee and Strumpf's study used statistical models to compare downloads of songs from 680 popular albums in a variety of styles with the actual sales of those albums, as reported to Nielsen SoundScan, the industry's leading sales tracker. The researchers statistically analyzed whether the sale of an album declined more strongly in relation to the frequency and volume of downloaded songs from that album. In one week, for instance, they saw a spike in downloads of songs from the soundtrack to the film "Eight Mile." They would chart sales data for that CD in the following weeks to see if the download activity caused sales to decline.

It didn't, they were stunned to find. "This is where we cannot document any relationship between file sharing and subsequent sales," says Oberholzer-Gee, calling the effect "statistically indistinguishable from zero."

In fact, the study found that for the most popular albums - the top 25 percent that had more than 600,000 sales - file sharing actually boosts sales. For every 150 songs downloaded, the study showed, sales jumped by one CD.
I would be quite interested to know whether this 2004 study gets cited by the defense.
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Old 10-04-2007, 09:33 AM   #65
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To all those bringing up Betamax. The DMCA makes it illegal to break any sort of encryption that protects copyright pretty much regardless of your reason for doing so. So if there is encryption, even trivial encryption, on your CD and you crack the encryption as part of the ripping process, it is a violation under the DMCA. This is true for ebooks with encryption as well.
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Old 10-04-2007, 10:01 AM   #66
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Ripping CDs in Canada

It is a little-known fact that ripping CDs is perfectly legal for private use in Canada.

Quote:
Copyright Act
PART VIII: PRIVATE COPYING
Copying for Private Use
Where no infringement of copyright
80. (1) Subject to subsection (2), the act of reproducing all or any substantial part of

(a) a musical work embodied in a sound recording,

(b) a performer’s performance of a musical work embodied in a sound recording, or

(c) a sound recording in which a musical work, or a performer’s performance of a musical work, is embodied

onto an audio recording medium for the private use of the person who makes the copy does not constitute an infringement of the copyright in the musical work, the performer’s performance or the sound recording.

Limitation
(2) Subsection (1) does not apply if the act described in that subsection is done for the purpose of doing any of the following in relation to any of the things referred to in paragraphs (1)(a) to (c):

(a) selling or renting out, or by way of trade exposing or offering for sale or rental;

(b) distributing, whether or not for the purpose of trade;

(c) communicating to the public by telecommunication; or

(d) performing, or causing to be performed, in public.

1997, c. 24, s. 50.
And this is what the law has to say about computer programs:

Quote:
Copyright Act
PART III: INFRINGEMENT OF COPYRIGHT AND MORAL RIGHTS AND EXCEPTIONS TO INFRINGEMENT
Exceptions
Computer Programs
Permitted acts
30.6 It is not an infringement of copyright in a computer program for a person who owns a copy of the computer program that is authorized by the owner of the copyright to

(a) make a single reproduction of the copy by adapting, modifying or converting the computer program or translating it into another computer language if the person proves that the reproduced copy is

(i) essential for the compatibility of the computer program with a particular computer,

(ii) solely for the person’s own use, and

(iii) destroyed immediately after the person ceases to be the owner of the copy; or

(b) make a single reproduction for backup purposes of the copy or of a reproduced copy referred to in paragraph (a) if the person proves that the reproduction for backup purposes is destroyed immediately when the person ceases to be the owner of the copy of the computer program.

1997, c. 24, s. 18.
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Old 10-04-2007, 10:18 AM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan23 View Post
To all those bringing up Betamax. The DMCA makes it illegal to break any sort of encryption that protects copyright pretty much regardless of your reason for doing so. So if there is encryption, even trivial encryption, on your CD and you crack the encryption as part of the ripping process, it is a violation under the DMCA. This is true for ebooks with encryption as well.
That's what I thought too, Dan, but several people have claimed here that the act of removing copy protection is not illegal, merely the distribution or development of tools which do so.
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Old 10-04-2007, 10:32 AM   #68
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Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
"Ripping" your own CDs has never been legal in the UK, and downloading copyrighted material is most definitely a crime regardless of whether you "own" the CD or not. This is like the very silly argument some people make saying that it's "OK" to download an illegal eBook simply because you've bought the paperback.

I'm 110% on Sony's side in this. These "filesharing" criminals need to be taught a lesson. The RIAA are most definitely the "good guys" here.
Spoken like a true reactionary.

To legal theorists, custom often has precedence on positive law. In a case where custom permits a certain act, and where the law forbids it, we have to ask ourselves which of the two take precedence. For all intents, what really matters is which of the two will end up punishing or acquitting an individual who commits the act. Positive law has the courts at its disposal, but that doesn't at all mean we'll be prosecuted if the Crown attorney doesn't think it's appropriate to pursue the matter. "Dura lex sed lex" only applies when the courts are willing to hear the case. Highway rules are a good example. In Canada, the limit is generally 100km/h, but the cops won't stop you unless you're doing about 120. We could safely say that according to custom, driving at, say 105, is perfectly acceptable, and that positive law will not sanction this violation.

In the case of copying CDs at home, we can conclude that custom overides positive law. I've never heard of a case in the USA where a person was prosecuted for copying CDs at home. So I would tend to disagree with Sony's lawyer when she says it's stealing. It may be contrary to the law, but it's not stealing.

Only a narrow-minded minority of people would say that something is wrong because the law says so. There are, and have always been, discrepancies between the written law and the social reality.
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Old 10-04-2007, 10:35 AM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
That's what I thought too, Dan, but several people have claimed here that the act of removing copy protection is not illegal, merely the distribution or development of tools which do so.
I am not a lawyer, nor do I play one on TV... so this is certainly not legal advice on which you can place any sort of reliance whatsoever.

That said... I have followed this subject very carefully, including a full semester graduate seminar on Copyright issues in the digital world (at CMU, led by Dr. Dave Farber). In the course of that seminar, we were told by a fair variety of quite eminent lawyers that the situation is as summarized above by HarryT (who is referring back to other posts including one of mine). Those eminent lawyers also said that this is their legal interpretation, that it seems like a good interpretation of the law, and that this interpretation has not yet been tested in court.

Translating from legal-speak: "We think this is a solid interpretation of the law. So do lots of other eminent lawyers. It seems to be the general consensus of the legal community. One never knows what'll happen in front of a judge and jury."

Xenophon

P.S. Of course this is all based on U.S. law. Your mileage may vary, especially in other countries.
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Old 10-04-2007, 11:12 AM   #70
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Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
That's what I thought too, Dan, but several people have claimed here that the act of removing copy protection is not illegal, merely the distribution or development of tools which do so.
I made a mistake. I think you are right. That still makes providing tools that allow ripping that circumvents any sort of DRM a violation though.

Last edited by Dan23; 10-04-2007 at 11:19 AM.
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Old 10-04-2007, 10:02 PM   #71
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I made a mistake. I think you are right. That still makes providing tools that allow ripping that circumvents any sort of DRM a violation though.
But always keep in mind, "That which is illegal for the individual is often common practice for nations." In fact the very nations in which the act is illegal.
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Old 10-05-2007, 06:25 AM   #72
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Harry, I recommend you to read this free book about Intellectual Monopoly: http://www.dklevine.com/general/inte...againstnew.htm
Maybe it changes your mind.

Best Steffen
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Old 10-05-2007, 10:37 AM   #73
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Ughh, such a touchy subject... I already know where my moral ground stands, yet it's always interesting to see where everybody elses are. Many people quote what lawsa they know of regarding the legality/illegality of what they do, yet therein lies the problem; they only know the laws to support their claims and not the laws that may exist which rufute those laws, hence all the litigation. While many claim it's black and white, I'd have to argue there for various reasons, a) different countries have different laws, b) ambiguous wording in many laws (typically placed their to future-proof the ruling), c) there are many other laws/rulings around that you can have no way of knowing unless you spent the time researching the piles or rulings and judgments previously passed, and finally, d) if it is so black and white, why is there such arguement over it?

I still stick by my earlier statement regarding taping form the radio, I have never known it to be illegal to record from the radio for personal use the entire time I was growing up. Nobody in any of the 15 states I lived in within the U.S. ever complained or got arrested for recording a song off the radio. Why else would the darn boomboxes have the capability to record from off-the-air? I never heard of any companies bringing any litigation regarding this, it wasn't until the Internet & MP3's made it possible to spread CD-quality music so rapidly that things got so hairy and so many gray areas began to crop up.

Oh yeah, a quick update... the RIAA recently won a claim against an individual for the spreading/sharing of 24 songs via Kazaa to the tune of $222,000! Not that they'll ever see that kind of action from a private citizen. Who knows, the ruling may be overturned when it goes back for appeal due to lack of proof. Link to Wired
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Old 10-05-2007, 10:51 AM   #74
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Oh yeah, a quick update... the RIAA recently won a claim against an individual for the spreading/sharing of 24 songs via Kazaa to the tune of $222,000! Not that they'll ever see that kind of action from a private citizen. Who knows, the ruling may be overturned when it goes back for appeal due to lack of proof. Link to Wired
She was offering 1,702 tracks for download. The RIAA representative had downloaded 24 of them as the proof for the court case. There appears to be absolutely no doubt whatsoever of her guilt.
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Old 10-05-2007, 10:56 AM   #75
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She was offering 1,702 tracks for download. The RIAA representative had downloaded 24 of them as the proof for the court case. There appears to be absolutely no doubt whatsoever of her guilt.
Thanks for the update, that's quite a large library she had up. I also just finished reading the other thread you guys had going regarding this same court case, quite interesting. Regarding the suppliers, I wonder why they don't go after all the file sharing companies out there as well? I know they took down Napster, but now there's quite a few other pay-as-you-go file sharing services that are legitimate.
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