Deleting Music: Not content to merely delete their own catalogue???

Both Warner Music and Sony Music Entertainment have asserted copyright ownership of things they do not have any claim to, and have gone about removing it, taking away public access to it, and attempting to profit from it through advertising revenue where it is available.

This is not an administrative oversight. This is a business strategy. They’re not just deleting their own music through neglect – they’re actively seeking and destroying everyone else’s wherever they think they can get away with it.

Some how the infringement by beneficiaries seems more odious, particularly when they are the boosters for more draconian enforcement for the rest of us.

Deleting Music: Copyright extension is anti-music

this decision is not made for the benefit of songwriters, composers, audiences, music researchers or for the benefit of culture.

It is a profoundly anti-music decision.

Worse, the Musicians Union ??? a body purporting to represent the interests of their members ??? have decided to side with the BPI in their support of this copyright extension, confirming their status as pro-popstar, pro-corporate entertainment complex and pro-copyright maximisation??? but utterly anti-music, and anti-musician.

I know some good people in the MU, and I can think of good reasons to be a member. But at a public policy level, the Musicians Union has become complicit in some of the worst decisions and campaigns that are not to the benefit of their members at all, but solely for the good of the corporate record industry.

I don???t think they have been fooled by BPI rhetoric. I don???t think they???re stupid. I didn???t say ???deluded??? ??? I said ???complicit???.

FTC Fines Santa Claus for Violating Children’s Privacy

Mr. Claus has flagrantly violated children’s privacy, collecting their consumer preferences for toys and also tracking their behavior so as to judge and maintain a data base of naughtiness and niceness,” Leibowitz said. “Worse, he has tied this data to personally identifiable information, including any child’s name, address, and age. He has solicited this information online, in some cases passing data to third parties so they may fulfill children’s wishes. According to unconfirmed reports, he has gone so far as to invade children’s homes in the dead of night. He has done this on a broad scale, unchallenged by government authorities for too long.

True, true dat.

Killing the Sacred Cows of Publishing: Can???t Make Money in Fiction

The Magic Bakery Metaphor

Think of us (every writer) as a huge bakery and all we make is pies. Magic pies, that seem to just reform after we sell off pieces of the pie to customers. And each pie can be divided into thousands of pieces if we want.

The Magic Pie secret ingredient is called ???Copyright.???

Every story we write, every novel we write, is a magic pie full of copyright.

We can sell parts of it to one publisher, other parts to another publisher, some parts to overseas markets, other parts to audio, or eBooks, or game companies, or Hollywood, or web publishers, and on and on and on. One professional writer I knew sold over 100 different gaming rights to different places on one novel. He had a very sharp knife cutting that magic pie.

So each professional writer has this Magic Bakery, making magic pies that can be cut into as many pieces as we want and many of the pieces can return as if never taken, even after being sold off. (You must learn copyright to really understand this.)

It may reform, you have it, you can sell it, you still got it. Magic, indeed. And there isn’t really magic is there? Except what the State can coerce for this fantastic minority.

The Red Statement

We believe the state of film marketing has become ridiculously expensive and exclusionary to the average filmmaker longing simply to tell their story. When the costs of marketing and releasing a movie are four times that film’s budget, it’s apparent the traditional distribution mechanism is woefully out of touch with not only the current global economy, but also the age of social media. Therefore, The Harvey Boys will not spend a dime on old world media buys (such as TV/Print/Outdoor) as we self-distribute our film, Red State, in an admittedly unconventional, yet extremely cost effective, word of mouth/viral campaign.

Knowledge is power, and we believe in empowering the filmmaker – so the Harvey Boys vow to make the financials of Red State open and transparent from which anybody hoping to follow suit can learn. We will do what no studio has dared: open up our books for the world to see so anyone interested in pursuing a similar independent release strategy has a better understanding of the BUSINESS of Red State.

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ThePirateBay.org?

RIAA: Someone Else Is Pirating Through Our IP-Addresses

A few days ago we reported that no less than 6 IP-addresses registered to the RIAA had been busted for downloading copyrighted material. Quite a shocker to everyone – including the music industry group apparently – as they are now using a defense previously attempted by many alleged file-sharers. It wasn’t members of RIAA staff who downloaded these files, the RIAA insists, it was a mysterious third party vendor who unknowingly smeared the group’s good name.

Yeah, right. Like RIAA would accept that from any one else. Their deceit is only exceeded by their greed, stupidity and hypocrisy.

Overbroad Censorship & Users

Under SOPA, every single one of the services that Abe uses can be obliterated from his view without him having any remedy. Abe may wake up one morning and not be able to access any of his photos of his children. Neither he, nor his students, would be able to access any of his lectures. His trove of smart online discussions would likewise evaporate and he wouldn’t even be able to complain about it on his blog. And, in every case, he has absolutely no power to try to regain access. That may sound far-fetched but under SOPA, all that needs to happen for this scenario to come true is for the Attorney General to decide that some part of PickUpShelf, SunStream, SpeakFree and NewLeaflet would be copyright infringement in the US. If a court agrees, and with no guarantee of an adversarial proceeding that seems very likely, the entire site is “disappeared” from the US internet. When that happens Abe has NO remedy. None. No way of getting the photos of his kids other than leaving the United States for a country that doesn’t have overly broad censorship laws.

There are millions of US internet users just like Abe. If you are one of them, I urge you to make your voice heard by going to AmericanCensorship.org or EngineAdvocacy.org/voice.

“If you do nothing wrong, you have nothing to fear” except from blunt instruments wielded by the stupid and their flunkies.

Homeland Security Request to Take Down MafiaaFire Add-on

Our approach is to comply with valid court orders, warrants, and legal mandates, but in this case there was no such court order.  Thus, to evaluate Homeland Security’s request, we asked them several questions similar to those below to understand the legal justification:

  • Have any courts determined that the Mafiaafire add-on is unlawful or illegal in any way? If so, on what basis? (Please provide any relevant rulings)
  • Is Mozilla legally obligated to disable the add-on or is this request based on other reasons? If other reasons, can you please specify.
  • Can you please provide a copy of the relevant seizure order upon which your request to Mozilla to take down the Mafiaafire  add-on is based?

To date we’ve received no response from Homeland Security nor any court order.

“We’re wearing jackboots and you can trust us, just do as we say.” When the State doesn’t obey the law, its in a poor position to call anyone else criminal.