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Friday, January 09, 2004

Copyfright

From the Department of Cop, Judge and Jury. Recently, some RIAA anti-piracy enforcement professionals dressed up to look like police personnel went looking for you know who. They found him when they swarmed on a 4 foot 9 inch 55 year-old Spanish speaking dollar-a-car parking lot attendant on Sunset Boulevard next to the fish-taco stand selling alleged illicit copies of [big drum roll] "Como Te Extraño Vol. IV — Musica de los 70’s y 80’s." All copies of the ill-gotten bootlegs were confiscated. The parking lot attendant was left bewildered. (LA Weekly: Music Industry Puts Troops in the Streets.)

It seems like almost everywhere I looked today, someone is taking a stand for or against digital rights; for or against copyright; for or against creators of music, software and whatnot; for or against consumers of music, software, and whatnot. Some arguments are hostile. Most are reasonable. I thought the following quote from Cory Doctorow tells especially well what’s happening:

[...] no one crippled the piano roll to make sure it didn't upset the music publishers, Marconi didn't cripple the radio to appease the Vaudeville players -- hell, railroad barons never slowed their steam-engines down to speeds guaranteed to please the teamsters.

Where does this bizarre idea -- that the dinosaur industry that's being displaced gets to dictate terms to the mammals who are succeeding it -- come from?

Think about it.

Posted by Marie at January 9, 2004 11:15 PM