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The RIAA spent over $2 million lobbying the government last quarter

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 24 Jun 2011 23:40 User comments (12)

The RIAA spent over $2 million lobbying the government last quarter No wonder they have to sue so many file sharers.
According to Bloomberg, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) spent $2.1 million lobbying the government in the last quarter, a big increase year-over-year (YoY).

The trade group, which is backed by record labels, has been pushing the government to impose stricter rules to protect IP rights in the U.S and other countries and has also been opposing a proposal that would force mobile phone makers to include FM radio chips in all handsets.

Two quarters ago, the RIAA spent $1.5 million lobbying and $1.4 million in the corresponding quarter last year.

In 2010, the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) proposed the FM chip mandate but has been met with extreme resistance, especially from the Consumer Electronics Association (backed by device makers) who believes adding the chip will just add unneeded weight and cost to devices for a feature many users will not care about.

The NAB wants the mandate as a way to "bridge the gap" on a bill that RIAA has proposed which would force radio stations to pay performance artists for radio airtime. The RIAA wants those royalties as it sees little promotional value of playing tracks on the radio now, given cliff diving CD sales. The NAB would be "okay" with the bill if the FM chip mandate passes.

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12 user comments

125.6.2011 12:39

America's #1 problem is Lobbying, it should of been made illegal years ago


Just shoot me!

225.6.2011 12:51

Originally posted by Zoner:
America's #1 problem is Lobbying, it should of been made illegal years ago
amen

325.6.2011 14:02

Lobbying is protected under the first amendment. Also there are positive aspects of lobbying. Such as lobbyists who protect the environment, promote public health, and protect your civil rights. Lobbyists are important advisors for elected officials. It would be unrealistic to believe that everyone we vote into congress is knowledgeable about everything. I'm not saying that all lobbyists are saints, but to think it should be illegal is, no offense, nonsense.

425.6.2011 14:31

"The NAB wants the mandate as a way to "bridge the gap" on a bill that RIAA has proposed which would force radio stations to pay performance artists for radio airtime."

That is not only stupid and moronic it is redundant. The organizations already exist. Their called ASCAP (1914) and BMI(1939) & have been under the hospices of raping the artist's for years. I'm a low life in comparison to these idiots in Washington & I know these organizations.

Are you telling me someone capable of bilking muti-millions of dollars from the American public can't do simple research to find these two organizations before stepping in a pile of shit this big?

I'm very well educated, but you're telling me that they're not better educated than I am that their research skills can't turn this up? Please... These 2 organizations are some of the biggest that whined about the Payola scandals back when Rock&Roll was in its infancy. All because "they" weren't getting their cut.

Just wait till they catch wind about this little stunt & remember who told you about this...


525.6.2011 15:06

Quote:
Are you telling me someone capable of bilking muti-millions of dollars from the American public can't do simple research to find these two organizations before stepping in a pile of shit this big?

I'm very well educated, but you're telling me that they're not better educated than I am that their research skills can't turn this up? Please... These 2 organizations are some of the biggest that whined about the Payola scandals back when Rock&Roll was in its infancy. All because "they" weren't getting their cut.

Just wait till they catch wind about this little stunt & remember who told you about this...

First of all, you're making some broad sweeping generalizations and leaving out key facts. You know what research takes more than education? Time. You think a congressman or even his staff as the time to research everything that comes across his desk?

Second, you are ignoring the whole argument that lobbying works in your favor as well. You know who else lobby's just the same as the RIAA? The EFF. And you bet your ass that every time the RIAA knocks on a congressman's door the EFF does the same.

Please don't misunderstand. I agree that the RIAA lobbyists are snakes. But I think it's foolish to take lobbying away altogether. Look at the bigger picture of what you would be doing.

Edit: Also I think I read somewhere else that you were a veteran. You know who else lobby's? The VA.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 25 Jun 2011 @ 16:18

625.6.2011 15:07
smiler123
Inactive

I'm gonna lobby against lobbying in the first amendment ^^

725.6.2011 16:47

@Azuran... I don't want to argue or marginalize what you're saying here, equally, don't minimize what I'm saying either.

2 organizations with virtually 200 years experience between them, already hard at work supporting "both" of your observations. No argument.

The RIAA (IMO) has absolutely no interest in the consumer other than our wallets. Plain and simple. I've been VERY active in that environment to know & have seen little to prove to me otherwise. Any further argument there would prove to be fruitless.

The EFF, I'm still out with the court on that one. They 'seem' to have our better interests in mind, but where were they when academia & scientists needed them when Clinton signed over off on the DRM in 1998, but it's current mission is stopping M$ from a monopoly not DRM violations? Now what's the motivation? So yeah, I'm still a little shaky.

But as far as your comment with the VA... You're not a veteran, otherwise you wouldn't make that comment; thus you would also know that there is quite a stigma attached to even mentioning that veterans even remotely promote, or that such a lobby is even having an effect in Washington. One case in point - after all the reports you've heard about veterans & how their treatment, would you want their health care? So is their lobby really 'that' effective? Therefore I would appreciate it (as would other veterans) that you not bring this particular part of lobbying up again.

Other then that, I'll almost stand for ridicule on anything else.

Which, by the way, I'm not ridiculing the RIAA for lobbying, I'm ridiculing them for not doing their homework. If they want mega-millions for what they do, then put in the labor in to earn it. Otherwise, they need to quit whining about the paycheck.


825.6.2011 17:33

@Azuran The VA lobbys? I was aware a funded Department of the federal government were also paying for lobbyists. No wonder us veterans are getting such crappy medical treatment. Now the VFW, AMVETS, DVA, IAVA, and American Legion lobby Congress on behalf of veterans, with private funds, over the crappy treatment given vets, their continuing underfunding of the VA, and the shoddy leadership they keep signing off on to be over the VA. I wonder if the State Department, Department of Homeland Security, and the DOJ are using taxpayer money to pay for lobbyists for the betterment of us citizens. If so, then no wonder this country is so screwed up. I don't agree with lobbyists in general. It is nothing more than paid access to push their agenda. If a lawmaker is uninformed on a subject, that is what the taxpayer has given them a staff for. They shouldn't get a one sided story from a biased lobbying group (with the most consideration given to whomever gives the biggest campaign contribution) to make public policy.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 25 Jun 2011 @ 17:40

925.6.2011 18:12

Quote:
The RIAA (IMO) has absolutely no interest in the consumer other than our wallets.
I agree, but that is every business. From big corporations like Microsoft to the mom and pop liqour store down the street. Sure they're methods are different, but your wallet is target #1.

Quote:
But as far as your comment with the VA... You're not a veteran, otherwise you wouldn't make that comment; thus you would also know that there is quite a stigma attached to even mentioning that veterans even remotely promote, or that such a lobby is even having an effect in Washington. One case in point - after all the reports you've heard about veterans & how their treatment, would you want their health care? So is their lobby really 'that' effective? Therefore I would appreciate it (as would other veterans) that you not bring this particular part of lobbying up again.

The VA example was a bad one and if I could take it back I would. I actually have two friends currently at odds with them over medical procedures they need compared to the pain pills that are given. My point was that there are lobbyists who work to promote your well being such as the groups listed by solamf30 whose post I will comment on later.

As as the EFF and the DRM passing is concerned. I don't know much about it to comment with any kind of authority, but I will speculate that they were not big enough to have any real influence at the time and it wasn't really until after the act passed that private funding for the group surged.

Quote:
If they want mega-millions for what they do, then put in the labor in to earn it. Otherwise, they need to quit whining about the paycheck.
It's all a matter of are they worth "mega-millions" to the recording companies. If their bottom line would be smaller without the RIAA around than I guess that means their existence and thus their paycheck is justified. In the eyes of the recording company I mean, not the interest of the public.

Originally posted by solamf30:
@Azuran The VA lobbys? I was aware a funded Department of the federal government were also paying for lobbyists. No wonder us veterans are getting such crappy medical treatment. Now the VFW, AMVETS, DVA, IAVA, and American Legion lobby Congress on behalf of veterans, with private funds, over the crappy treatment given vets, their continuing underfunding of the VA, and the shoddy leadership they keep signing off on to be over the VA. I wonder if the State Department, Department of Homeland Security, and the DOJ are using taxpayer money to pay for lobbyists for the betterment of us citizens. If so, then no wonder this country is so screwed up. I don't agree with lobbyists in general. It is nothing more than paid access to push their agenda. If a lawmaker is uninformed on a subject, that is what the taxpayer has given them a staff for. They shouldn't get a one sided story from a biased lobbying group (with the most consideration given to whomever gives the biggest campaign contribution) to make public policy.
Yeah my bad for mentioning the VA refer to my response to Lordruss for an explanation. I do however, wish to make one point about lobbying that some people don't understand. Lobbying from the stance of a business or organization is treated as an investment. It comes down to a simple cost analysis of whether or not a bottom line trend is increased or decreased because of the investment. So if an organization spends "millions of dollars" lobbying (a rare occurrence when you compare that to how many lobbyists are in Washington d.c.) it's because they feel that there is a good chance that it will increase profits/funding. My point: money paid for lobbying is certainly not wasted.

This is all I will post about the subject. Lobbying is not going away and it's an important and integrated part of our government. Either you get it or you don't. If you feel certain lobbyists are criminals (and yes some are) direct your anger to them instead of trying to portray the entire system as corrupt.
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 25 Jun 2011 @ 18:28

1026.6.2011 9:00

@Azuran... You're right, it is a cost analysis assessment; or, "can we afford to lobby hard enough to get the government to force laws into effect to protect our way of life".

A very legitimate practice. Equally, "it shouldn't have to be that way" as well.

I 'think' what folks are pissed about it is that hard working, honest folks don't have the money to just pay someone to protect them. So when they take their nickles & dimes to do so & it gets wasted, well, it revolves right back into the whole aforementioned arguments mentioned in the above comments. Yet, people who through bilking the honest or flat out robbery, use massive amounts of money to (some would say) bribe both honest & dishonest law makers into doing their bidding for illicit means; thus the complaints here. Or in a manner of speaking, folks are tired of financing laws that govern their own actions by proxy.

It's a system that's been used since time has had a barter system. So the likelihood that it will end is "never". A creative solution to minimizing its affects by those wealthy influences for ill gotten gains is going to be interesting.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 26 Jun 2011 @ 9:04

112.7.2011 12:59

Sorry to pop y'all's bubble, but $2 million is chump change for lobbyists; just check out how much Shell ($10,370,000) or Exxon-Mobil ($3,010,000) spent in the same time period. This isn't particularly newsworthy, I'm afraid, compared to the overall disaster lobbying has become.

122.7.2011 13:29

Originally posted by Bozobub:
Sorry to pop y'all's bubble, but $2 million is chump change for lobbyists; just check out how much Shell ($10,370,000) or Exxon-Mobil ($3,010,000)...
That's a bit naive... Oil companies are among the richest in the world. BP also hasn't been brought before the world courts either for all the damage they continue to do either & it's because they have one of the highest spending... We can only assume whether there are additional back room deals, campaign contributions & out right pay offs covering up or 'forcing into law' whatever these companies desire.

But it is safe to say that this kind of activity has gone on & probably will continue to go on so long as "those who have" will try to convince those that "have not" that they can give them what they desire.

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