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And, yes, I DO take it personally: RIAA escalation - a post for mettle
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Sunday, December 30, 2007

RIAA escalation - a post for mettle

oh, golly... i can just hear him now... "I TOLD YOU SO...!"
[I]n an unusual case in which an Arizona recipient of an RIAA letter has fought back in court rather than write a check to avoid hefty legal fees, the industry is taking its argument against music sharing one step further: In legal documents in its federal case against Jeffrey Howell, a Scottsdale, Ariz., man who kept a collection of about 2,000 music recordings on his personal computer, the industry maintains that it is illegal for someone who has legally purchased a CD to transfer that music into his computer.

The industry's lawyer in the case, Ira Schwartz, argues in a brief filed earlier this month that the MP3 files Howell made on his computer from legally bought CDs are "unauthorized copies" of copyrighted recordings.

"I couldn't believe it when I read that," says Ray Beckerman, a New York lawyer who represents six clients who have been sued by the RIAA. "The basic principle in the law is that you have to distribute actual physical copies to be guilty of violating copyright. But recently, the industry has been going around saying that even a personal copy on your computer is a violation."

RIAA's hard-line position seems clear. Its Web site says: "If you make unauthorized copies of copyrighted music recordings, you're stealing. You're breaking the law and you could be held legally liable for thousands of dollars in damages."

here's mettle, commenting on the relatively recent good ol' days when all we had to worry about was the heinous crime of File-Sharing...
The scary specter of Terrorism alone, no longer seems to provide Big Brother enough pretext and cover to smash the heel of the Jackboots down onto most everybody in order to grind the People into so much mash in the earth.

-- mettle

i am in complete agreement... this isn't simply about protecting the music industry... it's absolutely about expanding the controls of an increasingly fascist society...

you realize where this will start hitting immediately, don't you...? for those of us who travel outside the u.s. frequently, this will give just one more pretext for the warrantless search and seizure of laptops and mp3 players at u.s. customs inspection points, and the immediate detention of those who are found in violation... mark my words...

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