As the Rolling Stones began their tour while welching on the more than quarter of a million dollar deal they made with my Friend, I started this e-Blogazine journal to document some of my experience of the fallout, and to create a forum for discussion and resources to reform the Music Industry. May Artists, Musicians, and Free People everywhere find it useful.
Got Something to say? Are You a Musician, Artist, or Person with an opinion about the Music industry, music downloads, contracts or royalties? Are You concerned about the RIAA and other industries' assault on our cyber-Freedoms? Copyright and Intellectual Property law? Well?
"I Have Not Yet Begun To Fight" -Johnny Deep, Madster President and Founder
Johnny Deep, creator of AIMster and Madster, can be added to the list of those illustrious innovators (like Shawn Fanning of Napster fame) whose genius made them a target of the WTO's (World Trade Organisation) entertainment department, the RIAA/MPAA.
But Deep will not go gently into that good night. He's fighting back. Deep has filed suit against the mammoth entertainment lobby claiming that the recording industries' unfair business practices have damaged him financially.
"The business I conduct in my home in Cohoes, NY, has been damaged by the unfair business practices of the largest corporations in the world" said Deep. "But Aimster and the defense of civil liberties on the Internet cannot be stopped - I have not yet begun to fight."
RIAA members have been playing a sort of legal shell game in their attack on independent music producers and file sharing services. In the filing seeking damages for RIAA member collusion, Madster's counsel openly challenges this tactic, saying: "...Plaintiffs' (the RIAA members) attempt to hide behind a small subset of Moving Plaintiffs should not be countenanced. Plaintiffs continue to seek all the benefits of banding together when it is beneficial to them, and dispersing and hiding behind each other when it is convenient or when one group of them are at risk of an adverse ruling. The recording industry is the driving force behind this action and it should not be able to duck behind the Music Publishing Plaintiffs whenever it suits its needs. The Music Publishing Plaintiffs have never independently asserted any issues in this action until now. Indeed, their complaint only tagged along after all the other actions were filed. All the Moving Plaintiffs joined together to move for a preliminary injunction and should be treated similarly with respect to that motion." (emphasis added - g.moss)
For the reader wondering about what a "Moving Plaintiff" is, here's roughly what it means: The RIAA will file some motions against somebody. Sometimes it files a single motion, sometimes it files the same, or similar motions in multiple courts in multiple locations.
Sometimes, it is an RIAA member company that does this, separately. And, as in this case, sometimes the RIAA member company does this while the RIAA itself does it, too. Hence, the term "Moving Plaintiffs."
That's what I take it to mean, anyway. Somebody correct me if I'm wrong.
The idea is to bury the targeted victim, Madster in this case, Napster previously, and all others in the p2p world eventually, in costly litigation, and a plethora of motions which cost more to pay attorneys to respond to than the average small operator can afford. Like my Father always said - "In this country, You get only as much Justice as You can afford."
In a separate development, Madster Founder Deep has filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy - Reorganisation, and received an Injunction against the RIAA and member companies to prevent them from shutting Madster down. So, everything is still going...If You want a cheap, legal alternative to fascist RIAA arrangements that screw the Artists out everything, go on over to http://www.madster.com and get Yourself a copy - it'll make You money when You swap tunes!
There's a lot of food for thought in this case, and I highly recommend going to get.madster.com to check out the full press release and related links.
I don't have a clue. The other day, a posting at GrepLaw noted that a Judge had blocked the sale of Napster and assets to Bertelsman. When I saw that, I wandered over to http://www.napster.com, only to be greeted with the somber single, linkless page that proclaimed "Napster was here." Now all that has changed. Today's visit revealed the above graphic (altered here to repeat). I wonder what's up with that?
Sorry these links looked messy all day...for some reason Blogger's publishing software suddenly stopped offering any "Publish" or "Post" or "Post & Publish" buttons in the edit area this morning when I was working on getting this story up. - 090902 0240hrs -gm
AHA! I just discovered why I have been unable to publish or edit this post using the BloggerPro Publishing software! There is something about these coded URLs that the interface just *does not like*. Once published, You are unable to edit...click "edit", and the Blog entry is copied into the Blogger editing frame, but the Blogger Publishing interface (I'm currently using BloggerPro, but the same problem occurs in the previous version, and in the test version) fails to repaint the editing controls, i.e.
"Options | Upload File... | (anchor) B(old) I(talics) | (spellcheck) | Post | Post & Publish
So...guess I'll avoid using those coded URLs anymore. Still...wish I could delete this crapped up one, though. Sigh.
Anyway, I'm re-posting this semi-cleaned up version of the story because it's easier to read.D'oh!
The other day I was browsing around Greplaw, and spotted an interesting item entitled "Judge Rules Against Aimster". It says "a Northern Illinois District Court judge has granted a preliminary injunction in favor of the RIAA against Aimster (now known as Madster)," and points to a story described in InfoWorld. The Greplaw item continued, "the judge thinks that Aimster/Madster is 'a service whose very raison d'Ítre appears to be the facilitation of and contribution to copyright infringement on a massive scale.' "
While this is in itself worthy of pursuit, I discovered something else, just below that in Greplaw's writeup. Turns out Madster is a real Person. So I visited her site.
Wow. Nice place. And a delightful Young Lady with a head for cyberLaw - and $ (Madster is a subscription service, with an override deal for referrals).
Master the MusicPundit has reported that Artists and Consumers both distrust the big media cartels often represented by the RIAA/MPAA and their band of corporate thugs.
Good Legal/Music cyberLaw Journalism. Check it out.
"We are committed to protecting your intellectual property ...but we are not committed to protecting your business model." --ITIC President Rhett Dawson to MPAA Lobbyist
South Carolina Senator Ernest Hollings (not Green, not Libertarian, not Republican), chairman of the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, has circulated a legislative draft that has come to be known as "the Hollings draft". It gives tech firms one year to develop anti-copying "policeware," and if they don't, they'll be subject to criminal penalties.
So Republocrat Senator Ernest Hollings (not Green, not Libertarian) want's to put "Big Brother" in our PC's, which isn't too surprising, considering he has already taken $27,000 in campaign funding from the entertainment industry lobby so far this election cycle. Ah, well, I guess it's good that once You buy this Congresssman, he stays bought...so long as You keep up the progress payments. I must observe, as a Carolinian (North, not South) I am ashamed of this narrowmined Dixiecrat and his willingness to undermine my Right to Bear Silicon. He probably doesn't care though...I've never donated a dime to him.
Drew Clark and Bara Vaida have written an article in the National Journal, "Digital Divide," which details the current struggle between the Information Technology industry and Hollywood. It's a good read.
I noticed that the National Journal is a subscription site, but that the above-linked story is available without subscription. In examining the links on the page, most point back to within the National Journal site. I did find a few useful ones to external sources, though. I've listed them at the bottom of this entry.
If You don't like the idea of a Policeman built in to Your computer, preventing You from making backup copies of items, or compilations of music for Your "Fair Use" enjoyment, then go to PetionOnline and sign the petition against this idiotic legislation. (The text link goes right there, clicking the image at right will do it in a new browser window.)