[LINK] Porkie in Copyright Evidence?

Chirgwin, Richard Richard.Chirgwin@informa.com.au
Fri, 21 Feb 2003 07:23:27 +1000

Tim - 
> There is no doubt it will be RIAA "research" from USA which 
> has only one 
> real aim, to get a tax on blank CDs that goes to the 
> "recording companies".

Interestingly, I couldn't see any such research on the RIAA site either.

In fact, "libraries are repositories for pirate music" looks suspiciously to
me like one of those assertions that has been accepted as fact, without ever
being called out for proof. I found quite a number of references - in
articles, in speeches and so on - where people *said* public libraries were
hosting illegal music. But nobody actually sources their data. They just
repeat the allegation.

This is a bit like that old lie from the dotcom days about "Internet traffic
is doubling every hundred days", which nobody bothered sourcing until the
crash came.

I - and the ALIA - agree with you. "Library as P2P host" is pure moonshine. 

>From the stuff I read on US sites - publisher groups, congressional
committees and the like - I note that there is surprising hostility from the
"content conglomerates"  towards the public library. So it's quite feasible
that someone decided to lump libraries in with all the other things they
hate, and it took off from there. 

Richard Chirgwin

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Tim O'Leary [mailto:oleary@strategos.com.au]
> Sent: Thursday, 20 February 2003 12:48
> To: link@anu.edu.au
> Subject: Re: [LINK] Porkie in Copyright Evidence?
> At 12:44 PM Wednesday 2/19/03 +1000, Chirgwin, Richard wrote:
> >http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/02/18/1045330603596.html
> > >Counsel for the companies, Mr Tony Bannon SC, said industry studies
> > >of piracy had found public institutions such as 
> universities and libraries
> > >were the biggest repositories of unlawful sound recordings.
> >Hang on... Tony Bannon SC is (under instruction from his 
> clients) almost
> >certainly quoting from US industry studies.
> >A little bit of searching - not much, I'll admit - but I 
> can't find any
> >evidence to support the inclusion of public libraries, in 
> Australia, in the
> >list of repositories of unlawful sound recordings. Can any 
> Linker either
> >support or disprove this?
> There is no doubt it will be RIAA "research" from USA which 
> has only one 
> real aim, to get a tax on blank CDs that goes to the 
> "recording companies".
> Note there is no such thing as a big "recording company", 
> they are multi 
> media complexes cannibilising their own income stream through 
> DVDs, videos, 
> movies and merchandise and seeking to obtain effort free 
> income through a 
> tax on CDs. They already get some free income from blank 
> cassette tapes and 
> blank  "audio" CDs.
> Part of the strategy is to blame the internet and "piracy" 
> for alleged 
> falling music CD sales. In my view even the fact of falling 
> CD music sales 
> is far from convincing. As an example Country CD Music sales 
> in USA (and 
> world wide I believe) last year had an all time boom in 
> sales. The fact 
> that the Michael Jacksons of this world sell 5 millions less 
> CDs of their 
> latest (inferior) release isn't due to internet downloading 
> or "piracy".
> >This, I believe is important; if an urban myth takes off 
> that Australian
> >libraries are ripping off Sony et al, and if the urban myth goes
> >unchallenged into the public record - then I guess it 
> doesn't take much
> >imagination to envisage a future in which these companies 
> hold our public
> >library system to ransom.
> Libraries in Australia,  and from what I can glean,  in USA 
> too, do not 
> have any digital storage facilities, hell some don't even 
> allow downloading 
> onto a floppy. Given that even the crappiest highly 
> compressed MP3 will be 
> around 2 or 3  MB there is no way they are being stored.
> Might your learned friend the QC be referring to the practice 
> of libraries 
> having libraries of music CDs to borrow? Which can be taken  home and 
> copied - if one was inclined to copy "Camelot" and "Barry Manilow's 
> greatest Hits". Hardly a hothouse of criminal activity.
> The "music" companies are simply after an effortless income 
> stream, via a 
> tax on blank CDs (and next DVDs)  which, despite their claims to the 
> contrary,  they do not have to share with the artists.
> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> oleary@strategos.com.au
> www.strategos.com.au
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