Thursday, July 15, 2004

THE DONKEYS SUE THE DONKEYS: Oh, for God's sake, could someone arrange for a spot of heads being banged together? It doesn't matter if there's a spot of blood involved, or even a bit of brain-seepage, to be honest. You might have thought that the music industry, keen to join the legal downloading party, had settled its differences with Napster, yes? Napster's all shiny and new and dull, and its all legal. Except the music industry can't let go of the old Napster moans, and are pursuing their case against the defunct Napster. Not Bertelsmann, of course, as they briefly owned the company, and as such are the target of the legal action. Now, nobody wants to send out confused messages, but isn't carrying on with this pointless legal case just going to really muddy the waters? The RIAA is keen to promote legal downloading, but some of its members are about to push forward legal action that can only result in confusion in the public's mind - is Napster legal or not? Why are they suing a company they tell us is fine? Shall I just go and use BitTorrent instead anyway? - while another of their members is standing up in public saying that merely having ownership of a peer to peer network isn't the same thing as encouraging piracy, which seems to be the exact opposite of what they're claiming in the Australian case against Kazaa, isn't it?

We wouldn't mind if Big Music could be consistently evil, but they're just rubbish - it's like Ming The Merciless announcing "I'm going to destroy Planet Earth, and all life on it. Then I'll enslave the people. Oh, hang on, I'll take my holidays there..." It's no wonder the music industry is losing money - it's caught in perpetual paroxysms of confusion.

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