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How to Clean Up the Internet, In 3 Easy Steps…

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The following comes from Grammy winning composer, conductor, and producer Maria Schneider, who recently argued this in front of members of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property and the Internet.

quotation-marksChairman Goodlatte, Chairman Coble, Ranking Members Conyers and Nadler, and Members of the Subcommittee. My name is Maria Schneider. I’m a composer, bandleader, and conductor based in New York, a three-time GRAMMY-winner in the jazz and classical genres, and a board member of the Recording Academy’s New York Chapter. The Recording Academy is the trade association representing individual music creators. I’m very honored to speak with you this morning about my personal experiences with the notice and takedown provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, or the DMCA.

I come here as an independent musician in the prime of my career, grateful for a steadily growing fan base and critical acclaim. But my livelihood is being threatened by illegal distribution of my work that I cannot rein in.

The DMCA creates an upside down world in which people can illegally upload my music in a matter of seconds. But I, on the other hand, must spend countless hours trying to take it down, mostly unsuccessfully.

It’s a world where the burden is not on those breaking the law, but on those trying to enforce their rights.

It’s a world with no consequences for big data businesses that profit handsomely from unauthorized content, but with real-world financial harm for me and my fellow creators.

Like most artists, I love technology. I became a pioneer in online distribution when my release Concert In the Garden became the first internet-only album to win a Grammy, and it also heralded the age of fan funding.

But I’m now struggling against endless Internet sites offering my music illegally.  After I released my most recent album, Winter Morning Walks, I soon found it on numerous file-sharing websites.  Please understand, I’m an independent artist, and I put $200,000 of my own savings on the line and years of work for this release, so you can imagine my devastation.

Taking my music down from these sites is a frustrating and depressing process.  The DMCA makes it my responsibility to police the entire internet on a daily basis.  As fast as I take my music down, it reappears again on the same site–an endless whack-a-mole game.

The system is in desperate need of a fix, and I would like to propose three common-sense solutions:

First:

Creators of content should be able to prevent unauthorized uploading before infringement occurs.

We know it’s technically possible for companies to block unauthorized works, as YouTube already does this through its Content ID program.  But every artist should be entitled to this service, to register their music once and for all, with no strings attached. Just like the successful “do not call” list, creators of content should be able to say, “do not upload.” If filtering technology can be used to monetize content, it can also be used to protect it.

Second:

The takedown procedure should be more balanced.

I am certain that most of my fans who upload my music have no intention of harming me – and probably no knowledge that they are doing so. But to upload my music on most sites, one simply has to click a box saying they acknowledge the rules. On the other end of the transaction, I, the harmed party, must jump through a series of hoops, preparing a notice for each site, certifying documents under penalty of perjury, and spending hours learning the sites’ unique rules for serving the notice. Owners should have a more streamlined and consistent process to take content down.

But balance means Internet services have a responsibility too. They should better educate consumers who upload content, more clearly informing them that it is a violation of law to upload content they do not own. If consumers had to go through a more robust process to upload others’ content, the system would be more balanced and fair.

Third:

Take-down should mean “stay-down.”

Once a service has been notified of an infringing work, there is simply no excuse for the same work to show up again on the same site.

Mr. Chairman, my fellow creators and I have an important job – we create art that becomes the fabric of life for our own citizens and for people the world over.  American music has become the world’s music. Our founders had the foresight to give us the exclusive rights to our works in order to “promote the progress of science and useful arts.”  Authors were given the right to copy and distribute their own work in order to incentivize creation.

But I must tell you that the current environment does not fulfill that constitutional mandate.  The majority of my time is now spent on activities that allow me some chance of protecting my work online.  Only a fraction of my time is now available for the creation of music. So instead of the Copyright Act providing an incentive to create, it provides a disincentive. The simple changes I have outlined would make great strides in fixing this broken system.

Mr. Chairman, our founders showed great wisdom in seeking to protect creators.  I have hope and confidence that you and your colleagues will also show great wisdom in ensuring this protection will continue in the digital age.

Thank you.

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Comments (81)
  1. Anonymous

    Wow, a voice of reason!


    Reply
  2. Anonymous

    This may change everything!

    Below, you can see how Ms. Schneider’s testimony was received by the subcommittee. This is the first time I’ve ever seen Google lose an important battle in its war against art, music and movies:

    “After watching all three hours of testimony, it was clear that the congressional representatives, understood just how bad things had become for artists. It was nothing less than a revelation for those like myself who have been following the destruction of piracy for years. Every member of the subcommittee saw the need to provide greater protection for the individual artist. The cruel absurdity of hundreds of millions of nearly worthless take down notices every year was finally inescapable.

    The tech industry has always been very adept at redirecting any discussion that threatens to regulate their business, but this time with years of documented abuse, even the tenacious representative from Google was unable to make much headway. Her main point was how hard Google was fighting alongside artists and how Google was providing a new streamlined method for copyright holders to file take down notices. Really, a more efficient way to file worthless take down notices? Fortunately, none of the Congressmen were buying into this subterfuge.

    Congresswoman Judy Chu, a job creation advocate from California, provided real time proof that Google was failing in burying pirated sites in their search results. Barely typing in a few keystrokes associated with the Oscar Winning Film, 12 Years a Slave, numerous pirate sites appeared immediately on her iPad near the top of Google’s first search page. Unfazed, the representative from Google continued to extoll the progress that was being made by her company in pushing these pirate sites down in their rankings.

    With Amazement, Ms. Chu alluded to the fact that at the very moment Google’s representative was responding, Ms. Chu was literally looking at search results on her iPad. Sometimes, reality is irrefutable, even when confronted by the sharpest of minds.”

    SOURCE: “Online Piracy Finally In the Crosshairs”, Huffington Post, 4/42014


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      Congress has always been on the side of stronger copyright enforcement. It’s not like they had some kind of massive change of mind here. Yet 15 years later we are still talking about piracy as the worst thing ever. Why is that?


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        “Congress has always been on the side of stronger copyright enforcement”

        Um, no.

        But that may be changing now.


        Reply
    2. Guile

      Even if this did pass somehow in a tangible way within the next decade, we’d just need every other nation in the world to follow suit.

      No big.


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        “Even if this did pass somehow in a tangible way within the next decade, we’d just need every other nation in the world to follow suit”

        You might as well say that about the DMCA.

        And the proposed Stay Down initiative will solve the worst problem we face today in the creative industries: Google.


        Reply
  3. Dry Roasted

    Funny I can’t find DMN in Google search results anymore.


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      Perhaps the time is right for a new, modern search engine without close ties to organized crime.

      I’m tired of having to type “-torrent”, “-crack” and “-serial number” when I search for music or anything else that can be pirated.


      Reply
  4. tom lundberg

    This is clear, articulate and to the point. I hope that those who can do something were/are listening.


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      “I hope that those who can do something were/are listening”

      They were, and they are!

      Please see the Huffington Post exerpt above…


      Reply
  5. smg77

    Another musician who doesn’t understand how the Internet works and also apparently thinks the entire Internet falls under US jurisdiction.


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      Another nerd who thinks the internet is a separate universe with separate laws.

      Try to wrap your head around this fact:

      If it’s illegal to steal my music in a store, it’s also illegal to steal it on the web.


      Reply
      1. hippydog

        Quote “Another nerd who thinks the internet is a separate universe with separate laws.”

        For all intents and purposes’.. in any country that has access to the infrastructure..

        THAT IS EXACTLY THE STARK TRUTH..

        When you learn that, only THEN can you learn to deal with it..


        Reply
        1. Anonymous

          No, the exact same laws apply on and off the web.

          The only problem is enforcement, and that seems to be changing atm.


          Reply
          1. hippydog

            Keep you rose colored glasses on, then tell me how that worked for you a year from now.. ;-)

            you are correct, The problem is enforcement, but if you think drastic changes in that will happen anytime soon you don’t know how the internet works.. (the laws are already in place, and are able to very little about the issue)

            I 100% agree that some things can change and should (the DMCA takedown issue is just one of the things that need to be addressed, etc etc)

            BUT

            The main underlying problem is always going to be there..
            in the digital age its just way to easy to make copies, that simple fact will not be changing.
            for artists to survive in the future they will need to accept it, and learn to deal with it..


            Reply
            1. Anonymous

              “I 100% agree that some things can change and should (the DMCA takedown issue is just one of the things that need to be addressed”

              So let’s solve that issue. The only way to do so is closing the Safe Harbor loophole, and that alone will make a huge difference:

              3 out of 4 potential pirates find pirate sites via search engines. Many of them are not even looking for stolen music in the first place. They just search for their favorite artists.

              And Google sends them directly to the Pirate Bay.

              Again and again and again…


              Reply
        2. Anonymous

          The Internet is under American jurisdiction.


          Reply
          1. smg77

            No it’s not.


            Reply
          2. Anonymous

            “The Internet is under American jurisdiction”

            More pirate nonsense.


            Reply
    2. Anonymous

      the internet DOESN’T work..


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        Well, that’s what pirates & pedophiles always say. All they see is censorship. And they always think the internet is broken when society prevents them from getting what they want.

        But the internet works fine for the rest of us.

        Sure, we need laws on the web, just like we need them everywhere else, but that’s not a problem.


        Reply
        1. Anonymous

          it is not coincidence that the age of organized crime against art is tied to the popularization of the internet. sexually repressed nerds who hate the handsome and sexy artist so much, they take revenge the only way they know how, by creating the internet.

          the internet is fundamentally designed by anti-copyright terrorists. at the core level all its technologies were designed to rape the artist. we have to design a new internet, an internet for artists by artists and where copyright is core to its design.


          Reply
          1. hippydog

            quote “we have to design a new internet, an internet for artists by artists and where copyright is core to its design.”

            LOL!
            yup, YOU should do that..
            come back in a year and apprise us on how thats working for you..


            Reply
            1. Anonymous

              “yup, YOU should do that”

              Easy now hippydog, he’s just a pirate pretending to be a seriously screwed up artist. :)


              Reply
          2. Anonymous

            “sexually repressed nerds who hate the handsome and sexy artist”

            Hehe, you really think we are sexy? :)


            Reply
          3. Anonymous

            Let’s not forget that file sharers are all literally clones of Hitler.


            Reply
            1. Anonymous

              Again, you need to be more subtle if you wish to sound like the Evil Artist of your dreams.

              Just sayin’…


              Reply
          4. Albert Shanker

            Organized crime has been in the record business since inception, so I’m not sure what your comment means.


            Reply
            1. Anonymous

              “Organized crime has been in the record business since inception”

              Yes — but it moved away from the dark alleys and into your pc when Google became the world’s leading advertising agency for criminal companies like the Pirate Bay.


              Reply
  6. Keenan Digsby

    I guess six strikes hasn’t quite helped much. Six strikes…..that’s a lot of strikes!


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      it would stop if six strikes meant six strikes. in the pirate’s ass. given by the artist, of course.


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        “in the pirate’s ass. given by the artist, of course”

        Um, you still try too hard, imho.

        You may want to take it down a notch if you want us to believe you’re this evil Nazi Artist, torturing poor pirates. ;)


        Reply
        1. Anonymous

          uh no. take your pro-organized crime nonsense back to torrentfreak


          Reply
  7. wallow-T

    Alas, Ms. Schneider (I even own a couple CDs of hers)…

    “it’s technically possible for companies to block unauthorized works, as YouTube already does this through its Content ID program” YouTube can make this work, somewhat, because they only have to deal with a limited number of file types, which are unencrypted. Doesn’t expand to general file uploading. Also, in the case of Google search results, Google does not have the file to examine: it only has a pointer to the file. Same for BitTorrent or other link-based swapping.

    “If consumers had to go through a more robust process to upload others’ content…” Content is content. Translation: dismantle the user-generated portions of the net.

    “Once a service has been notified of an infringing work, there is simply no excuse for the same work to show up again on the same site. Again, shows confusion between a work, and a link to a work, and ignores all the simple defenses uploaders have such as encryption. Hash values? Changed by dinking one byte of the file.


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      yawn… take your boring nerd bullshit excuses elsewhere. you can’t fool us anymore.


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        Typical nerd mafia tactic. Throw nonsensical word and phrases at us. They think proves the validity of their opinions.


        Reply
        1. agraham

          Well his nerd shit is right. I’m on the side of artists and yet there are some technical challenges. Something posted to YouTube is different than a search result from crawling the web. I’m not saying there aren’t solutions, but there are some serious issues that need to be figured out. The smartest thing said above was “preventing” infringement from happening in the first place.


          Reply
          1. Anonymous

            “there are some technical challenges”

            Well, I’m another Anonymous but let’s cut the crap, shall we?

            If the Big Tech dudes can’t solve their techical problems, they just have to find new jobs. Selling t-shirts, or whatever they’re qualified to do.

            Incompetence does not entitle them to steal. Content is king on the internet, and you have to pay if you want it.


            Reply
            1. Anonymous

              How about we just float California into the sea. Nothing good came from there.


              Reply
    2. hippydog

      Quote “Doesn’t expand to general file uploading. Also, in the case of Google search results, Google does not have the file to examine: it only has a pointer to the file. Same for BitTorrent or other link-based swapping.”

      it doesnt matter..
      the sharing (torrents and others) tech still relies on basic file-name architecture ..
      Yes the file-name can be changed but every time that happens it breaks the many-to-one share.. and there is a limit on how obtuse the file name can become..


      Reply
  8. TuneHunter

    Nice statement, unfortunately Google is the King.

    Only massive lobby effort by major artists can overrule Google wishes.

    Google is in the bed with government on daily basis, so there is not much hope for music.
    Heavy duty lobby or just showing Google how to control 50% of new100 billion in place of fight with 20 smaller gorillas for 25 billion of streaming and advertising scrap.


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      “unfortunately Google is the King”

      Kings come and go. Just ask Alta Vista and MySpace.


      Reply
      1. TuneHunter

        I hope you are correct.
        The problem we got is US government as the Queen – with Google as a head of the household it might be long wait!


        Reply
  9. Veteran - US MUSIC INDUSTRY 1970-today

    in cyberspace everyone’s opinion is right … or not ;) j/s


    Reply
  10. jw

    I wonder if she recouped that $200,000 during the ArtistShare campaign for the recording of Winter Morning Walks. She sold out of executive producer credits at $10,000 a pop… it seems like she did really well raising cash. I would love to know if that $200,000 was above & beyond the ArtistShare crowdfunding & if it was really on the line when the album was for sale.

    The thing about the internet is that you can’t have it both ways. Without the free & open internet, it would’ve turned into a corporate controlled shopping mall. There would be no crowdfunding, at least not at the scale that she’s doing it. I’m not sure she really understands the consequences that would result from what she’s suggesting.

    But let’s really examine the “real-world financial harm” she’s talking about. Piracy is an all-or-nothing game. If you take down one instance of an illegally uploaded work, the user is simply going to go to the next instance in the list. I’m not convinced that Mrs. Schneider is really making any practical headway at all with the effort she’s putting into policing the internet. I found a website where one of her albums had been downloaded almost 200 times over the last 4 years. So I’m sure that thousands of music fans have downloaded her work over the years. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that all of those fans would have otherwise purchased the music, had it been available for free. Quite simply, the amount of media pirated over the last decade & a half does not correspond to the entertainment budgets of these internet users. Not even close. We can’t even be sure that these internet users ever even got around to listening to the albums they downloaded.

    So “real-world financial harm” to Mrs. Schneider is, off the bat, just a fraction of what it appears to be. It actually sounds to me like she’s spending more trying to police the internet than she’s actually losing.

    And what of these inconsequential downloaders? The ones who wouldn’t have otherwise payed for the album? The ones that have no negative “real-world” financial impact on Mrs. Schneider? Do they end up contributing to her ArtistShare campaigns? Could some of them actually end up having a net positive real-world financial impact? I don’t believe it’s unreasonable to entertain that possibility. If Mrs. Schneider polled her ArtistShare contributors, I think we could get a better idea of the reality of the situation.

    Now, I have no doubt that Mrs. Schneider is absorbing real-world financial losses thanks to internet piracy. And it’s difficult to estimate what those may be, because artists tend to focus on the availability of the music, rather than the actual impact of the availability (i.e. whether or not their music is actually getting downloaded, & if so, to what extent). And so every artist seems to have a trumped up idea of what their losses actually are. And it makes sense… artists are artists because they’re self-involved & egotistical. In artistry, those traits are strengths. That’s what makes them a good artist. When it comes to determining the impact of piracy, those are not strengths. That’s why statisticians suck as artists, & artists suck as statisticians. Or mathematicians. Or economists. Or technologists. Or whatever.

    And so someone needs to explain that to her. That she’s probably just wasting time & money on piracy. And that her suggestions about how to “fix” the internet actually mean she’ll have to go back to relying on a record label. Or at least the next generation of artists in her situation are going to have to rely on record labels. And you can bet your goddamn bottom dollar that the chunk of change that the record label is going to take will dwarf the “real-world financial impact” of internet piracy.

    At least that’s how I see it.


    Reply
    1. jw

      Also, I think it’s hilarious that her music isn’t available on Spotify, but she has a user profile.


      Reply
  11. Anonymous

    How does she expect small companies to manage contentID? Especially given that tiny changes to a file make it hard to match again. “You nerds can figure it out but you’re lying to us,” which commenters are screaming in this thread, is not a real answer. Come join the programming ranks if you think it’s so easy.

    One thing that might not be too bad is to require sites that want DMCA safe harbor to all register at a centralized location, making the takedown process much easier to manage for artists. Of course, then you are running things through a government-administered website. I’m not convinced that will make things better for artists, and I’m pretty sure it’ll make things worse for web companies.

    At the end of the day, you are best off crowding out the pirates by providing a better service (makes recommendations, has nice graphics, allows the user to easily switch devices, hooks into mobile and social sites seamlessly) that dominates search results. Music piracy has dropped quite a bit in the last few years as streaming has come online, has it not?


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      “How does she expect small companies to manage contentID?”

      That’s not her problem. If companies — big or small — don’t want to pay for the content they need, they have to shut down.

      “Come join the programming ranks if you think it’s so easy”

      Nah, here’s how it works: If you can’t do your job, you have to find another.


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        Either you’re just trolling, or you’re a phenomenally stupid know-nothing.


        Reply
        1. Anonymous

          So, you tech guys expect us to help you do your job? Really? Please explain why would we want to do that.

          Again, if you want content in the future you have to pay for it. Or make your own — if you can. ;)


          Reply
          1. Anonymous

            Look, your framing is off. The main problem sites are the ones that are geared around letting users easily share content with each other. In this category, the vast majority of traffic is legitimate, even on the sites with the most massive piracy problems, like Youtube or – from the article – Google itself.

            I don’t know exactly what you want to be done. It sounds like you want to get rid of the DMCA and require sites to be legally responsible for preventing all illegal content from being uploaded in the first place. You seem to think the software engineers could do it if they wanted to, but are lying to you about what is possible.
            Well, identification algorithms will never achieve perfection, so users would have to pay for manual filtering on all of these sites. I wish you luck in selling that to the general public, I guess.


            Reply
            1. Anonymous

              “You seem to think the software engineers could do it if they wanted to”

              Again, if software engineers can’t do their job, they have to find something else to do. Sell t-shirts, for instance.

              But here’s the good news: Most tech guys stop crying and start working if they really have to. Two great examples:

              1) The Viacom case forced YouTube to invent ContentID.

              2) Ten years of pressure from child care organizations forced Google to block child porn in 2013.

              “users would have to pay for manual filtering on all of these sites”

              So users pay Google for manual filtering child porn?

              Um, no.

              Google pays for that. Because it’s Google’s responsibility.

              Just like it’s Google’s responsibility to filter out other organized crime sites such as the Pirate Bay.

              And don’t worry, it’s very easy. You can do it in a week. Google proved that in 2013.


              Reply
              1. PTSoundHound

                Umm… don’t want to stick my neck out here… but…

                If I saw a piece of child porn on the net I can be pretty confident that it’s illegal

                If I see a digital music file on the net is that also 100% illegal? What about the ones on iTunes or Amazon MP3? Even with those companies, how do I KNOW that the music they’re serving me is indeed legal? We all assume that it is but how can I BE SURE?

                I which case, why not prevent everyone, everywhere from uploading anything until they can prove 100% that they categorically, without question, limitation or geographical constraint own all the rights to that piece of media?


                Reply
                1. Anonymous

                  “So you’re saying this Pirate Bay is a CRIMINAL site? Gee whiz, how were we to know?”

                  Eric Schmidt.


                  Reply
                2. Anonymous

                  It isn’t necessary to be abolutely ‘sure’ about everything before taking action. Most decisions in life are taken on a basis of probabilities and common sense. Even in a court of law there is no need for absolute certainty. In a criminal case, guilt has only to be proved (in the Anglo-American legal tradition) ‘beyond a reasonable doubt’. In a civil case, the standard of proof is weaker: the usual requirement is proof ‘on the balance of probabilities': in other words, the complaint has to be more likely than not to be true. For some purposes a still weaker standard might be justified. In dealing with ‘spam’, Google demotes or removes entire websites or even domain name registries from search results if a ‘large fraction’ of material is deemed to be spam. According to Google ‘This allows us to protect our users from seeing spam, when taking action on the individual spammy accounts would be impractical’. Google and other actors could quite reasonably take the same approach to suspected copyright infringement if they wanted to, but of course they don’t, because it is not in their own interest.


                  Reply
    2. Versus

      If “small companies” cannot handle their legal and ethical responsibilities, then they should close their doors.


      Reply
  12. Danwriter

    “…the successful “do not call” list,”

    The fact that that’s her idea of a successful technology remedy underscores the magnitude of the problem (and her naiveté). The Do Not Call list is the Maginot Line of telecom, just as DCMA is the same for online distribution. The solution to piracy won’t be technological, at least in the long run; it will be cultural. Think cigarettes or drunk driving: awareness campaigns over a long period of time, coupled with either enhanced enforcement or graphic representations of the harm caused, are what made the real difference. Some people, but far fewer, will continue to smoke and drive drunk, but the damage will ultimately trend downwards.


    Reply
    1. agraham

      Education has done nothing to curb this so far…especially when you consider that the culture shift that has to occur is over a decade behind…and that somewhere around 65% of the founders of the leading Silicon Valley startups responsible for perpetuating this problem were teens when Napster first launched…they went straight from not having to pay for music to…well…founding companies that allow people to continue paying nothing for music…or anything. Technology is critical to this and it needs to occur in the next 2-3 years or really…it’s game over for the music industry.


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        “Education has done nothing to curb this”

        Correct. If education could stop theft, we wouldn’t need laws and enforcement. But we do. Everybody can agree on that.

        So let us make this clear to the tech guys:

        It makes no difference if you steal our music in a store or on the web. The consequences need to be the same.


        Reply
      2. wallow-T

        “somewhere around 65% of the founders of the leading Silicon Valley startups responsible for perpetuating this problem were teens when Napster first launched…they went straight from not having to pay for music to…well…founding companies that allow people to continue paying nothing for music…or anything. Technology is critical to this and it needs to occur in the next 2-3 years or really…” Um, if most of the current wave of top tech talent was raised with the Napster ethos, where are the programmers who are going to deliver a technological solution to “piracy”?


        Reply
    2. wallow-T

      “… it will be cultural. Think cigarettes or drunk driving:…” Or, think of 1920’s alcohol prohibition, and the current swing towards marijuana decriminalization, other cases where mass behavior eventually brought about acceptance and a downplaying of enforcement efforts.


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        “think of 1920′s alcohol prohibition, and the current swing towards marijuana decriminalization, other cases where mass behavior eventually brought about acceptance and a downplaying of enforcement efforts”

        Mass behaviour has never decriminalized theft, and I can guarantee it never will. ;)


        Reply
    3. wallow-T

      “it will be cultural. Think cigarettes or drunk driving: awareness campaigns over a long period of time… Think Nancy Reagan, “Just Say No,” D.A.R.E… Why, I do believe the scourge of the marijuana-smoking musician has been eradicated through education!! :-)

      The education efforts from the copyright industry which I’ve seen have a sad tendency to remind me of Reefer Madness.

      Oh yeah, abstinence-based sex education: how’s that one working out? Are virginal musicians saving themselves for marriage now? :-)

      At its core, the education message is my favorite meme: “Kids, you’re better off if you listen to less music!”


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        “the education message is my favorite meme”

        …and here it is:

        “It’s extremely expensive to make your music you love. If you don’t pay, we can’t make it for you anymore.”


        Reply
        1. hippydog

          Quote “It’s extremely expensive to make your music you love. If you don’t pay, we can’t make it for you anymore.”

          Yes!

          but theres the catch…

          Not enough people are noticing..
          A lot of people have left the biz, or are threatening too, but tons of music is still being churned out to the masses..

          and instead of quitting you would think more artists would release their music differently (in a format that at least slows down the copying), but no, its usually released in the same old format that hits the pirate sites within days..

          so the ” If you don’t pay, we can’t make it for you” is true,
          but the general public doesnt seem to give a frack..


          Reply
          1. Anonymous

            “the ”If you don’t pay, we can’t make it for you” is true, but the general public doesnt seem to give a frack..”

            I don’t agree.

            Piracy forced the creative industries to invest in hits only, and a growing number of consumers complain about the consequences (Spiderman, 50 Shades & Katy Perry all over the place).


            Reply
            1. Anonymous

              Honestly I like modern music more then the wurrrrlwurrrrl grunge crap the “well funded” 90s music industry churned out.


              Reply
              1. Anonymous

                “Honestly I like modern music more then the wurrrrlwurrrrl grunge crap the “well funded” 90s music industry churned out.”

                I’m not big on 90’s music either, and I really like contemporary pop. But that’s just a matter of personal preferences.

                You can’t deny that the 90s were considerably richer in terms of innovation than the 00s and early 10s. You could even argue that electronica alone provided as many new possibilities as any of the four legendary decades before it. Add britpop and grunge and you have a truly distinct decade.

                And it goes without saying that you can’t afford to invest in risky experiments like that when piracy has cut the entire industry down by 50%.

                We have to play it safe today. More Spiderman, more 50 Shades, more Katy Perry.


                Reply
                1. Anonymous

                  Nope. There is very little good music from the 90s. The 80s and 70s are better. Ironically a lot of music these days tap inspiration from the 80s (eg. electropop) and totally skip the 90s.


                  Reply
  13. Danwriter

    Other might argue otherwise:

    http://www.itp.net/589042-more-education-needed-on-software-piracy-says-bsa#.U0wfJsd5_ZM

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesmarshallcrotty/2012/01/31/better-than-sopa-public-education-best-weapon-against-web-piracy/

    http://www.singaporelawwatch.sg/slw/headlinesnews/39382-multi-pronged-approach-in-curbing-piracy-ministry-forum.html

    http://advanced-television.com/2013/10/14/education-and-innovation-key-to-challenging-movie-piracy/

    As agraham points out, there is an entire generation with the skills to pirate easily. They are also the ones who will create the tools to help stop it. But they won’t be motivated to do so without having their attitudes towards it changed, perhaps by reminding them how contingent their own IT successes are upon copyright.
    As for stepped up legal actions, all one neds to do is look at how that’s worked out for the war on drugs (yes, there is a valid analogy) or the RIAA’s war on its own customers. Even Hillary Rosen, the pitbull-in-a-dress that initiated that mess, concedes it was horribly counterproductive.


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      “RIAA’s war on its own customers”

      Huh? Pirates are not customers, they are thieves. Don’t you sue thieves if they steal from you?

      And I’ll let you in on a little secret: Suing pirates is turning into a decent source of income these days, with new anti-piracy companies popping up all the time. I can assure you there’s nothing counterproductive about it… :)


      Reply
    2. jw

      The distribution mechanisms for software are changing.

      Adobe’s Creative Cloud service, Apple App Store, Google’s Play Store, game distribution platforms like Steam, stores built into the OS in gaming systems like XBox & Playstation, etc, along with well developed device security, have all proven to be, as far as I can tell, very effective at combatting piracy. It’s still possible, but it’s so difficult, & pricing models make so much sense that why bother?

      Software developers ARE solving their piracy problems, these solutions just don’t apply to media like music or videos or ebooks, especially in a market where consumers demand interoperability between devices.

      Ask anyone in the tech industry if they’re concerned with music piracy & whether or not they think it relates to them… I doubt anyone gives a shit. And with good reason, the industry has resisted the technology industry at every turn. It doesn’t take a rocket surgery degree to look back on the last 15 years & envision how technology & innovative pricing structures could’ve created a booming music industry, rather than a collapsing industry, but music industry executives shit the bed & here we are.

      If I’m a tech guy, a partnership with the music industry is a liability, & that’s just not a shitty bed I want to get into.

      My two cents, anyhow.


      Reply
      1. Versus

        A technical solution cannot solve a moral problem.


        Reply
        1. wallow-T

          Outside of the copyright business, almost no one sees copying as a moral issue. Injunctions against copying are not in our fundamental moral code; if copying had been a moral issue, there would not have been giant racks of blank cassettes in stores like Tower Records in the 1990s. Copyright is, instead, a business regulation.

          If copying were a moral issue, it would have been mandatory for the big music labels to continue with large scale lawsuits and damn the consumer blowback.


          Reply
  14. Versus

    All excellent points and should be implemented immediately.

    With one significant addition: A serious penalty structure for infringers, and a resultant compensation payment to the intellectual property owners.


    Reply
  15. Steve Godfrey

    Could we fight fire with fire? If someone could develop a program to continuously search pirating sites for uploaded material, perhaps through automated searches by artist name, song title, or even the music itself (a la Shazam), it could automatically generate notices of copyright infringement to the site owners, artists and appropriate enforcement authorities. Save time spent policing it ourselves. Finance and push for laws and enforcement through Ascap or a separate organization (I for one would surely kick in a reasonable fee for the service) that imposes a fine per upload and/or download. Let the buggers generate revenue for us. $1 per downloaded song, maybe, the gross for a purchase. Let the government(s) keep a portion to fund enforcement and give them incentive. Other half goes to the infringed parties. Put a fine on advertisers as well, by requiring a fee to be collected by law from future advertisers at time ads on those sites are purchased. Kill their revenue. Give enforcement incentive. Reimburse us. If they manage to evade efforts, flood the sites with download requests making their sites slow and effectively unusable.

    Has anyone considered this? Has it been attempted? Could it work? Am I mulling too much? (Where’s that smoke coming from?)


    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      “If someone could develop a program to continuously search pirating sites for uploaded material”

      Yes, that would be awesome.

      Until then, you can use commercial services such as ToppleTrack, Muso, DigitalRightsCorp or NukePiracy. This is highly recommended, especially during release week/month.

      Toppletrack charges $3/track if you have 10+ tracks, Muso charges £150/album (unlimited takedowns), DigitalrightsCorp is free; pirates pay $20/infringement.

      “push for laws and enforcement through Ascap or a separate organization (I for one would surely kick in a reasonable fee for the service) that imposes a fine per upload and/or download”

      I’m afraid we need an entirely new, modern organization to deal with these issues. Piracy is the problem today and the old organizations just don’t understand it yet.

      But above all, we need to close the DMCA loophole.


      Reply
    2. jw

      The argument here is that it can’t be automated. Otherwise Google could do this, themselves.

      For instance, is your system going to have parody detection? Suppose someone named “Floyd” created a parody called “Pink Floyd.” Or would the system, in the name of the Brian Jonestown Massacre, remove content related to the actual Jonestown Massacre that included the name Brian?

      Obviously these aren’t the best examples… they’re actually quite bad, but I’m just spitballing. The point is that all sorts of protected free speech could potentially be violated by a system like this. That’s what makes it a complicated issue. Obviously Maria Schneider & the RIAA & many people in this thread couldn’t give two shits about protected free speech, but it is, indeed, important. Perhaps moreso on the internet than anywhere else.


      Reply
      1. Anonymous

        “it can’t be automated. Otherwise Google could do this, themselves”

        Most of it can, jw.

        This is especially true about the world’s best known threat to music and art today, the Pirate Bay. Here we’re talking about a criminal company that doesn’t respect any laws.

        Google can move it away from the main street in less than a day. Just like it moves thousands of other criminal sites away from the main street every day.

        We also know now that it is very easy for Google to handle more complex cases that can’t be automated. Google proved this in 2013 when it finally began to filter child porn manually. This also proved that pedophiles and pirates were wrong when they claimed that Google’s users were going to pay the bill for such manual work.

        “Maria Schneider & the RIAA & many people in this thread couldn’t give two shits about protected free speech”

        Nobody on the planet is doing more to protect the freedom of speech than artists.

        This was true during the Medieval period; it was true during WW2, it was true in the 1960s, it was true in Eastern Europe during the Cold War, it was true during the fatwa against Salman Rushdie, it was true during the Pussy Riot case, and it was true when YouTube recently censored Katy Perry’s Dark Horse after religious threats.

        You always see the same pattern:

        Artists fight censorship and defend freedom of expression, sometimes with their lives, while tech guys do exactly nothing. And that’s not because we’re better than you, everybody can see we’re not, it’s just because freedom of speech is the stuff art is made of. And it has zero to do with providing access to stolen songs.

        Here’s the thing: Content is king. Big Tech knows that. It just doesn’t want to pay for it, and it can’t create it any of its own, so it takes what it can find without asking, and it tells the victims that it’s censorship if they complain.


        Reply
        1. jw

          Google doesn’t automate the removal of child pornography. There is a manually kept list of specific urls that are blacklisted from the system. The reason that works is because there are foundations like the IWF or whoever who do the dirty work because they, like any reasonable person, have a deep rooted concern for the well-being of children.

          Who, then, is going to take up the plight of the sound recording owner? What reliable third party is going to spend all day documenting digital piracy so that Jay Z can buy his 15th house? Because, let’s be honest here… those who are most greatly affected by piracy are those who are pretty well off.

          The issue here is that content owners can’t be trusted to maintain this list. Because UMG & WMG & Sony don’t give a fuck about my freedom of speech, & would abuse their influence over Google’s search results as much as they possibly could. WMG wants to protect my freedom of speech about as much as they want to pay James Taylor all the royalties they owe him.

          And so the bottom line is that there’s so much corporate ownership involved, & this is to such a degree, in practical terms, an upper class problem, that no one is moved to take on this cause in a meaningful & trustworthy way. And so the DMCA creates a situation where the content owner must do the work his- or her- or themselves, & the receiver of the notice has to double check that it’s a fair issuance.

          You just really can’t compare child pornography & music. It’s weird that I have to explain that to you.


          Reply
  16. Nuke Piracy

    Hello,

    We noticed our company name had been mentioned and wanted to add some information.

    We are currently developing several projects. Our efforts are of an unconventional nature and allow a more personal interaction between rights holders and pirates. We can not discuss our methodology completely but our approach is quite different from all other groups or organizations .

    We invite you to visit our network of sites for more news and information about our operations and actions.

    You can find our sites @:
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    http://www.nuked.me
    http://www.warezjunction.com
    http://www.antiwarez.com
    http://www.antipiracyforums.com


    Reply

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