AfterDawn: Tech news

RIAA president speaks out on Fair Use

Written by Dave Horvath @ 14 Nov 2006 3:53 User comments (17)

RIAA president speaks out on Fair Use In a recent article, RIAA president Cary Sherman took time out of his busy day full of lawsuits to comment on what he refers to as a gross misinterpretation of Fair Use.
The Fair Use section of the Copyright Act in question is what regularly comes under fire from the record labels and movie industry. It is clearly stated that it serves the best interest of the consumer in that he or she may lawfully consume the content they purchased in the time, place and manner of their choosing. Instead, the recording industry would have consumers pay multiple times for the same content in their fight to restore funding for the artists who make the content available.

Sherman describes Fair Use as an "an undeniably important plank of copyright law," and continuing to say that it is "in danger of losing its meaning." He further goes on to say that Fair Use is intended for criticism, news and scholarship and that "it is certainly not an excuse to boost the sales of electronic devices and services on the backs of hard-working creators."

In the article, Sherman takes direct aim at his archenemy in his quest for digital abolishment, the group known as Digital Freedom. Digital Freedom was launched a few months ago by the Consumer Electronics Association to counter lobbying actions taken by the RIAA and bring the consumer into the limelight and stop further plans on making DRM policies more strict. Digital Freedom holds true to their statement in saying that Fair Use rights are "under attack by the big recording labels and studios, who would ultimately deprive individuals of the right to communicate using digital technology."

Sherman took an accusatory stab at the CEA and Digital freedom stating that their campaign is not only based on false and incendiary rhetoric, but tries to sully their name saying that the CEA is not concerned at all with consumer rights, rather with their own bottom line figures. Sherman retaliates with thinking that its OK to make a profit "But to seize the mantra of 'consumer rights' to advance that business interest is simply disingenuous. And to do it at the expense of creators' right to be compensated for their work is short-sighted."

What Sherman doesn't realize is that to say that the CEA and Digital Freedom's lobbying actions are taking money away from the creators as their only platform is false. The CEA is opposed to Senate actions proposed by the RIAA such as the INDUCE Act. Introduced in 2004, its purpose was to hold manufacturers such as Apple accountable for creating devices that even give a portal to possible copyright infringement. Thankfully the act never made it to the committee, but there are still multiple acts proposed to the Senate regularly by the RIAA to take rights away from the consumers.

It appears that Sherman doesn't understand the interpretation of the word fair. If he is, in fact, trying to be fair, he needs to include consumers into his own considerations along with the record labels, songwriters and such. Is it not true that if it weren't for the consumers themselves, artists and record labels wouldn't have the revenue they currently have?


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17 user comments

114.11.2006 6:10

LOL I love it.....its a shame he just dose not get it....without streamlining and getting with the times and INFLATION 2$ sonys and 12-20$ CDs are not going to sustain much less keep you going,suing the fans and artists to get money that will work...yaa....

214.11.2006 6:25

I'll pray for you Digital Freedom.

314.11.2006 7:38

this sherman guy sounds like the biggest douche in the world. he makes a living harasing normal people and trying to change long established laws about fair use. if these dudes could they would make it so you had to pay money every single time you listend to a song, you would never own it, you would have to pay for listening rights every time. i cant wait till all their money from the 90's dries up and they end up on the street. then theyll figure out what acting like a selfish ass realy gets you...

414.11.2006 10:10

Such much hate and hostility in your statement georgeluv. I like you already. :-p

514.11.2006 20:04

"Hard-working creators?" Who would those be? The suits? The "artists" like crack whore Whitney Houston or boozer Keith Richards? Michael Moore? Oliver Stone? Is that working hard? Has any of them, ANY, ever had to dig ditches for a living or cut levees on a farm? That's hard work, loser suit. You're as out of touch as the American voter.

615.11.2006 1:23

The genie has been out of the bottle since Napster and she's never going back in!

715.11.2006 10:55

It is clearly stated that it serves the best interest of the consumer in that he or she may lawfully consume the content they purchased in the time, place and manner of their choosing.
Does that mean if I purchase a song or a CD etc.. I can do what I like with it with no problems. Because to my understanding of this statement it means i purchased the copyright of that individual disc and i am free to do what i like with it. but i doubt thats what it means.

816.11.2006 8:16

No one is really sure what it means. That's the thing. I think if you purchase a CD with songs you should be able to do anything you want with those songs for your own enjoyment. I don't think you should be able to play a song on the air b/c you purchased the CD, but you should be able to copy it to your Ipod, etc. To be honest, I think these people do more harm than good. When they sued a young girl (age 14 or so) about 4 years ago for downloading songs, I vowed to never buy a CD again in my life. I never have, and never will. They lost a customer, and hopefully will lose a few more from their nazi tactics... I hope you all get sued and go bankrupt, and when you try to sleep on my porch like the dogs you are, I will kick you back into the street. Pigs...

916.11.2006 10:07

fair use states you own the media and the data off it for private personal use until you sell the media that the data came from.

1017.11.2006 22:17

If only that were so, ZIppyDSM... Right now, if I squeeze out money and buy a DVD, I am allowed to watch it ONLY on: 1. an unmodded hardware DVD player in the same zone as the DVD was bought in 2. windoze, in the same zone as the DVD was bought in I can get sued if I: 1. watch it on an open-source player 2. watch it in a different zone 3. transfer it to a different medium 4. recode it to watch on a different device (or to just make it take up less space) 5. let friends/family see it (personal use) Although 5) could be digested if the price was *MUCH* lower, 1) to 4) are pure idiocy. That is why I no longer buy DVDs (hell, I hardly ever watch movies anymore) - it would still not give me the right to watch them it in Linux.

1118.11.2006 7:25

lbbz what country are you in? 0_o

1218.11.2006 8:19

It's all academic now, anyway. Now that the Nazis like Schumer who started this whole "catering to the studios for graft" thing are back in power, Fair Use is going bye-bye. Nice while it lasted.

1318.11.2006 8:27

mspurloc pretty much even the USA will bend over for them because the lobbyists run the system,sure the people can change thigns now and then but then the lobbyists corput them and lead them astray....

1419.11.2006 1:31

guys, I read all the comments regarding industry blustering on piracy and I only hope that consumer associations will have an impact. I am all for giving the artist his/her/their due compensation but the situation had got quite ridiculous. The industry has clearly not thought out proper business cases for the digital age (it 'll come). I can tell you that in the 80's the International federation of music publishers would have put on anti-copy devices on LP's if they could have- but political opinion luckily was against. The consumer is the promoter of (often talentless) artists and, provided no profit is made, should have total control of the music or other copyright work that has been purchased.

1519.11.2006 6:31

P2P - Freedom fightin' rebel yell

1620.11.2006 3:39

Well thank the LORD i live in Canada, the U.S. has many problems that I'd rather not have to deal with like this. Also CD's are MUCH higher quality than the average MP3, but then again im starting to get into SACD and DVD-A. Now THAT is where the quality is AT! lol. CD's suck thats the bottom line. The quality is just not there, if anyone here has listened to a good SACD or DVD-A on a half decent system you know what im talking about. Also if the artist isnt good enough to buy their entire album then i dont bother at all. CD's are NOT worth what they ask conisidering the quality of the average CD. Older iron maiden CD's are $30 EACH! yet a DVD-A or SACD is usually $30. just try to convince me to buy one of those iron maiden CD's lol.

1716.12.2006 13:32

lbbz (Newbie) ...newbie is right, and not an attorney either, or he wouldn't post such trash. Opinion: Fair use means we can copy it however we want for our -own-personal- use (regardless of attornies)... transferring to another medium, like recording tv shows to video tape, recording the radio to cassette tape, recording record albums to cassette tape, ripping CD's to iPods, etc. If I pick up my DVD and my DVD player and go to Europe, I'm watching it in a different zone... Family/friends can watch my original medium all they want... and likely even my copies, if they watch/listen -with-me-. What you can't do is dupe it and distribute it, period. And thanks to the DCMA or whatever the acronym is, you're not allowed to defeat copy protections, for your own fair use, as far as I can tell. Or maybe it's just making the tools to do so. Fair Use rules... abolish the RIAA, and the MPAA... and Create a new organization with artist/consumer oversight. Screw the middle-profiteers... they ought get the least benefit of the three groups, not the most.

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