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Old 10-03-2007, 05:07 PM   #46
Nate the great
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Originally Posted by delphidb96 View Post
HarryT,


Now here's the problem with that statement. As her words are part of the trial, if the judge decides the plaintiff is right *AND* does not clarify, as part of his ruling, that the act of ripping a CD for personal use/music backup is not covered by the ruling, under such a scenario other cases can be brought against those who *are* trying to legally back up their legally-purchased music. In essence, we could, by crass manipulation on the part of the plaintiff's lawyer and oversight by the judge, find ourselves 'made criminal' after the fact -ex post facto is, I think, the term. And that's wrong, morally wrong!

Derek
I'm sorry, but you are wrong. First of all, this is not a criminal case and cannot establish criminal law. Second, for this to establish civil law the case would have to go before an Appeals court judge, and possible the Supreme Court. This case is currently before a District judge.

Here is a fact that many seem to have forgotten: She is not a criminal. What she did was not a crime. If it was a crime, then the case would read US v..., not Music companies v... What she did is called copyright infringement.
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Old 10-03-2007, 05:11 PM   #47
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The RIAA are not the ones breaking the law.
You are right Harry. The RIAA are not the ones breaking the law. They are the ones making the law, or at least lobbying to have them made.
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Old 10-03-2007, 05:36 PM   #48
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Originally Posted by Nate the great View Post
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sony_Co...l_City_Studios

The BetaMax case. It is completely legal in the USA to record broadcasts, tv or radio.
Nate - the case that you quote established that it was legal to tape for the purpose of time shifting (my emphasis). ie, what is legal is to record, watch/listen to the tape, and then erase it.

Taping with the intent of permanently keeping it, or watching it multiple times, is not legal. Granted, it's something it's clearly impossible to enforce, but I believe that I am right in saying that, strictly speaking, it's not legal.
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Old 10-03-2007, 05:42 PM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
Nate - the case that you quote established that it was legal to tape for the purpose of time shifting (my emphasis). ie, what is legal is to record, watch/listen to the tape, and then erase it.

Taping with the intent of permanently keeping it, or watching it multiple times, is not legal. Granted, it's something it's clearly impossible to enforce, but I believe that I am right in saying that, strictly speaking, it's not legal.
The Wikipedia article is not accurate. Trust me, I studied this case in an ethics and law class.
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Old 10-03-2007, 05:55 PM   #50
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I've studied it too, Nate. It is precisely that fact that video recorders were deemed to be (quote) "capable of substantial non-infringing uses" (ie time shifting) which led to the court giving its 5-4 decision in favour of Sony. Time shifting was deemed to be fair use and since the video recorder was capable of this, it was ruled not to be a device which existed solely to infringe copyright.

The important thing, however, is that although the actual recorder was ruled not to be a "copyright infringing device" that does not mean that all uses of it are so. Clearly, for example, using a video recorder to make a duplicate of a commercial videotape is a use which infringes copyright, as is (perhaps less clearly) taping an LP which you haven't bought (although taping your own LPs was, I believe, ruled to fall into the "fair use" clause of copyright law).

It all boils down to "intent". Taping off the radio for strictly personal use may indeed be deemed fair use, but selling that cassette commercially, or even giving it to a friend almost certainly is not.

These issues are never "black and white".
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Old 10-03-2007, 06:18 PM   #51
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Wonder how many MP3 players Sony sells to "criminals" who rip their (Sony produced & sold) CDs to their (their own Sony) Mp3 player!!
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Old 10-03-2007, 07:15 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
It's all too easy to make "big business" out to be the "bad guys", but the truth is that record company profits are falling through the floor primarily due to a generation of teenagers today who seem to feel that they have some "God-given right" to download free of charge any music track that they wish, rather than going out and buying records as we did when we were that age. All these companies are doing is trying to protect their own commercial existance, and I think personally that we should support them in that, rather than supporting the criminals.
I know the record companies like to make this claim, but is there any independent evidence to back it up? 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 do have to say that it seems to me a big problem in the entertainment industry today is lousy content at silly prices. I'm not saying that justifies stealing from the corporations, I just wonder how much filesharing has become a scapegoat for other industry problems.
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:04 PM   #53
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Hey. Why innovate when you can litigate instead?

I'm sure many corporate types are thrilled with Radiohead's new online album release.
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:15 PM   #54
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Most independent studies I've seen seem to support the idea that the downturn in the music industry is structural rather than being the result of file sharing. As Harry pointed out, the general consensus has been that taping an LP you already own is fair use. It is this same principle that has led by extension to the consensus that ripping the songs on a CD one owns to mp3 so they can be enjoyed on a computer or mp3 player is also fair use.

Currently, in the US it's not spelled out explicitly by statute either way. It's considered legal under fair use but no one has specifically ruled whether it is or not. The music industry would obviously prefer that it be ruled illegal, citing the precedent that people had to re-buy music when they converted their collections from LP to CD. However, the counter-argument to that is that people were able to convert from LP or CD to tape without re-buying their music and that home copying to tape has been historically considered non-infringing.

Personally, I consider that ruling it infringement would be disastrous for the RIAA. In one stroke they would alienate most of the few supporters they have left. Their big problem right now is that they are treating their customers as enemies, which is not a way to build support. Many people see the RIAA as an essentially parasitic body that does nothing but sue people and artificially inflate the price of CDs. Among other things they have never let anyone be exonerated, not even those people sued by mistake who neither owned nor had ever used a computer. They would only drop the charges with prejudice.

This is an extremely important case for a number of reasons. As I said earlier both the defendant and the plaintiff are on trial and precedent will be set.
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:25 PM   #55
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The same change in attitude needs to take place with downloading material from the internet, and people (especially children) need to be taught that simply because it's not a "material object", that doesn't make it acceptable to use it without paying for it.
I couldn't disagree more strongly. We are entering an era as a human race - the end of scarcity. Previously, knowledge and information were precious commodities, available only to those with money or power. Copies were expensive to make, and thus distribution was much like that of physical objects - you sold a book just like an apple.

Now, however, it's as if we invented a way to give everyone on earth apples, for free. It'll destroy the apple-sellers' business, but what it will gain us a society is much, much more precious.

Business models will need to change. Someone still needs to grow that first apple. Will they do it for a salary? Will they do it because they love growing things? Will they do it based on a huge lump sum given to them by all the apple-lovers of the world, or by a government? I don't know. It will happen, though, because it's a niche that needs to be filled.

And the faster we get to that point, the better off the world will be. We're one step closer to Utopia (or maybe Star Trek).
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:25 PM   #56
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I didn't so much mind paying for CDs when I already owned the vinyl LP, because the sound quality was higher and the recordings were more durable. I honestly don't think the music and book cases are equivalent, because anyone who could download a music file from the internet could just as easily rip the CD to MP3 themselves, at this point, whereas books are still time-consuming to scan and OCR, so people tend to want to distribute the effort. And unlike the vinyl to CD move, there aren't strong value-adds to digital books yet. If the publishers would start adding extra content to digital versions of books (author essays, scans of author notes or sketches, a short story, chapters of other books, whatever), I'd be a lot more willing to pay for ebooks when I already own the pbook. (I've bought DVDs of content I owned on VHS tapes for the same reason.)
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:27 PM   #57
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I couldn't disagree more strongly. We are entering an era as a human race - the end of scarcity.... it's as if we invented a way to give everyone on earth apples, for free.
Unfortunately, the apples themselves aren't free, and writers still need to eat. Until we have replicators and unlimited energy to power them, we aren't living entirely in an information economy.
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:33 PM   #58
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Unfortunately, the apples themselves aren't free, and writers still need to eat. Until we have replicators and unlimited energy to power them, we aren't living entirely in an information economy.
Well, as I said, someone needs to grow the first apple - write the first book, etc. :-) That will still happen, because there's still demand for it. How will it work? I have no idea. Honestly, I think people might do it for free... Look at the amazing amount of content people produce for love. They don't get paid for it, and in certain cases (like independent film) they lose tons of money.

But in any case, I think we are living in the information economy. We just haven't all realized it yet :-)
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:34 PM   #59
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(I've bought DVDs of content I owned on VHS tapes for the same reason.)
I'll go you one step further. I've bought some movies on VHS, LaserDisc, and DVD. LaserDisc, while physically awkward, is still superior to DVD.

Other than that, a rousing "me too" to the rest of your post.
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Old 10-04-2007, 01:11 AM   #60
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RIAA anti-P2P campaign a real money pit, according to testimony

More updates on the trial here:

http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post...money-pit.html

Great quote:

"One of the biggest bombshells from the cross-examination was Pariser's admission that the RIAA's legal campaign isn't making the labels any money, and that, furthermore, the industry has no idea of the actual damages it suffers due to file-sharing."
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