from: Cinda Baxter @ The 3/50 Project : www.the350project.org
Thanks for the post; as the founder of The 3/50 Project, I can’t begin to tell you how much the visibility is appreciated. It’s amazing how picking 3 stores, then spending a tiny $50 per month can have such a huge impact…especially when you consider that $68 per $100 spent in locally owned businesses returns to the local community through taxes, payroll, and related expenses (compared to an anemic $43 if spent in big boxes…or zero, if spent online).
To learn more, or to be listed as a supporter (which you are!), please visit the350project.org.
Big high five for the mention!
(And yes, I agree, this would be GREAT for Rolling Stone.)
SCOTLAND YARD is to deploy officers armed with 50,000-volt Taser stun guns to deal with violent demonstrators planning to disrupt this week’s G20 summit in London.
The centrepiece of the security plan will be hundreds of officers from the Metropolitan police territorial support group, who are routinely armed with speedcuffs, extended batons and CS gas spray.
The Met confirmed yesterday that they will be supported by officers equipped with Tasers on stand-by should trouble break out.
“There will be an armed response vehicle element to this operation and [those officers] will be carrying Tasers,” said a spokeswoman.
The Met’s admission that Tasers could be used for the first time in the UK during riots came as protest groups claimed police had contacted them to warn that a day of protest in the City on Wednesday would be “very violent”.
[SEE ALSO my earlier post on the willingness of the British state to use lethal force to protect the interests of global capital]
vruz: so… this would be a preemptive “Summer of Discontent”, a good pretext just so all the machinery is in place by the time things really get ugly…
Communities across America are suffering through a crisis that could leave a dramatically diminished version of democracy in its wake. It is not the economic meltdown, although the crisis is related to the broader day of reckoning that appears to have arrived. The crisis of which we speak involves more than mere economics. Journalism is collapsing, and with it comes the most serious threat in our lifetimes to self-government and the rule of law as it has been understood here in the United States.
John Nichols and Robert W. McChesney were the founders, with Josh Silver, of Free Press, which has launched a campaign to save the news. Their book, Saving Journalism: The Soul of Democracy, will be published by New Press in the fall.
A Spanish court has taken the first steps toward opening a criminal investigation into allegations that six former high-level Bush administration officials violated international law by providing the legal framework to justify the torture of prisoners at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, an official close to the case said. The case, against former Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales and others, was sent to the prosecutor’s office for review by Baltasar Garzón, the crusading investigative judge who ordered the arrest of the former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet. The official said that it was “highly probable” that the case would go forward and that it could lead to arrest warrants.
Simple and effective idea for impacting our local economies. (via Seth Godin)
vruz: well I’ve been doing this for years it’s really a no-brainer, but it’s great Godin is a great communicator and hopefully people will start paying attention and realise they’re killing their own neighbours when they buy from the big markets.
Godin should have this published on Rolling Stone.
FSF,[The Free Sotware Foundation] with Ray Beckerman serving of counsel, have asked to file an amicus brief in the Sony v. Tenenbaum case. I thought you’d like to read it. The plaintiffs oppose the motion, and Tenenbaum supports it. So that means the court will decide if the amicus will be accepted or not.
The purpose of the brief is this:
We are submitting this brief to bring to the Court’s attention some of the growing body of authority suggesting that the State Farm/Gore due process test applicable to punitive damage awards is likewise applicable to statutory damages, and in particular bars the suggestion that each infringement of an MP3 file having a retail value of 99 cents or less may be punishable by statutory damages of from $750 to $150,000 — or from 2,100 to 425,000 times the actual damages.1
So it’s more support for the concept of proportionality and asking the court to consider the Constitutionality of statutory damages in copyright cases involving noncommercial individuals. [ Update: Ray Beckerman sends a correction. He says the reasoning of the four cases and two law review articles and the brief is equally applicable to commercial copyright infringement defendants
Participating bands will receive 50 percent of both the digital and physical revenue. The bands don’t have to pay for any of the recording or production costs and are given final approval of the releases
Before joining Webster Hall Entertainment, Feinberg was Best Buy’s national entertainment director. The retail chain has a history of supporting up-and-coming acts.
“Our goal is to define ourselves as a business that supports local music,” Phil Chacra, the New York district manager for Best Buy, says. “We want to build our media and entertainment side of the business, and this is a great way to bring in customers.”
Nearly seven years after National Century Financial Enterprises collapsed in a $2.9 billion fraud, its founder, Lance K. Poulsen, was sentenced to 30 years in prison on Friday in one of the harshest white-collar punishments in history.
Mr. Poulsen was convicted in October of leading a vast fraud as chief executive of National Century, a company based in Dublin, Ohio, that provided financing for hundreds of clinics, hospitals and other health care providers.
The company’s fall in 2002 contributed to the bankruptcies of 275 health care facilities and cost Credit Suisse and the Pacific Investment Management Company, the nation’s biggest bond fund investor, more than $540 million.
We assume that the scientific method is applied straightforwardly to all biomedical research, including the discovery and testing of pharmaceuticals… They show that pharmaceutical research is widely corrupted by marketing agendas. The evidence is incontrovertible, however, the process by which this corruption occurs isn’t straightforward.
2008-02-18 So everything you do is because you want to pay the starving artists…. yeah right !
More than a dozen musicians claim they’ve lost more than $6 million USD since 1998.
More than a dozen recording artists, including the estates of Count Basie and Benny Goodman, sued Universal Music on Friday, saying they had been cheated out of more than $6 million in royalties since 1998.
The artists, many of whom signed with recording companies that were later bought by Universal, sued the world’s largest music label for breach of contract and breach of fiduciary duty in a lawsuit filed in New York State Court.
recording industry try stick and carrot approach, except there's not much of a carrot, only kayne west-grade crap and plentifulness of stick
Starting today we’ll have a periodic report on the state of the recording industry mob, their lies, their illegal moves, their blackmail, threats and other nice tactics that make them so popular among the customers they like to sue.
if you have news you’d like to share, post comments below. thanks !
RIAA asks ISPs to send copyright warnings in three-strike policy
By Samantha Rose Hunt Friday, March 27, 2009 13:30
Chicago (IL) - The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has launched its plan to recruit Internet service providers in a quest to combat piracy. It’s been confirmed that Comcast and Cox are cooperating with the RIAA in some form or another, though as of yet there has been no elaboration as to the extent. And while it has been reported by the Associated Press that AT&T is testing a system with the RIAA, AT&T denies that is the case
Comcast and AT&T on Wednesday emphatically denied participation in a Recording Industry Association of America anti-piracy crackdown that involves terminating internet access to repeat copyright scofflaws.
First, artists and copyright holders deserve to be fairly compensated.
Second, file sharing is here to stay. Despite all the lawsuits, P2P file sharing is more popular than ever. And new digital technologies are just going to make copying digital music easier and cheaper every year.
Third, the fans will always do a better job making music available than the music industry. The majority of the world’s recorded music is “out-of-print.” Yet the fans are making it available, every day, on P2P file sharing networks and the World Wide Web. In other words, if we want to build a Library of Alexandria for our global musical heritage, it’s the file sharing fans that will build it for us.
Fourth, any solution should minimize government intervention in favor of market forces. Markets-driven solutions are likely to work faster, and more efficiently, than top-down government regimes.
The Proposal: Voluntary Collective Licensing
Since 2003, EFF has championed an alternative approach that gets artists paid while making file sharing legal: voluntary collective licensing.
The concept is simple: the music industry forms several “collecting societies,” which then offer file-sharing music fans the opportunity to “get legit” in exchange for a reasonable regular payment, say a total of $5-10 per month (after all, services like Rhapsody sell all-you-can-eat music for around $10 per month, so we know the rate should be below that). So long as they pay, the fans are free to keep doing what they are going to do anyway—share the music they love using whatever software they like on whatever computer platform they prefer—without fear of lawsuits. The money collected gets divided among rights-holders based on the popularity of their music.
In exchange, file-sharing music fans will be free to download and share whatever they like, using whatever software works best for them. The more people share, the more money goes to rights-holders. The more competition in applications, the more rapid the innovation and improvement. The more freedom to fans to publish what they care about, the deeper the catalog.
The Precedent: Broadcast Radio
It has been done before.
By voluntarily creating collecting societies like ASCAP, BMI and SESAC, songwriters brought broadcast radio in from the copyright cold in the first half of the 20th century.
Songwriters originally viewed radio exactly the way the music industry today views KaZaA users—as pirates. After trying to sue radio out of existence, the songwriters ultimately got together to form ASCAP (and later BMI and SESAC). Radio stations interested in broadcasting music stepped up, paid a fee, and in return got to play whatever music they liked, using whatever equipment worked best. Today, the performing-rights societies ASCAP and BMI collect money and pay out millions annually to their artists. Even though these collecting societies get a fair bit of criticism, there’s no question that the system that has evolved for radio is preferable to one based on trying to sue radio out of existence one broadcaster at a time.
Copyright lawyers call this voluntary collective licensing. It’s voluntary for artists—the government doesn’t force them to join a collecting society, and even after they join a collecting society, they remain free to license their songs directly (that’s why it’s not a compulsory license). It’s also voluntary for the broadcasters—the government doesn’t force radio stations to take licenses from any PRO (that’s why its not a tax).
The same thing could happen today for file-sharing: Copyright holders could get together to offer their music in a “blanket license”—an easy-to-pay, all-you-can-eat, music buffet. We could get there without the need for changes to copyright law and with minimal government intervention.
On September 8, 2003, the recording industry sued 261 American music fans for sharing songs on peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing networks, kicking off an unprecedented legal campaign against its own customers.
The recording industry has now filed, settled, or threatened legal actions against well over 28,000 individuals, and there is no end in sight.
While the strategy of forcing ordinary music fans to pay thousands of dollars to avoid even bigger RIAA-member lawsuits is itself troubling, many innocent individuals are also being caught in the crossfire.
If you have been sued or need actual legal advice, consider visiting the Subpoena Defense Alliance or contacting EFF — we may be able to refer you to a lawyer or provide other assistance.
Below, we’ve provided a collection of resources that may be useful to music fans caught up in the RIAA lawsuit campaign and the lawyers who defend them. Start with the RIAA v. the People paper, which recounts the long, terrible history of the RIAA’s legal campaign against music fans. You can also learn about how EFF has helped music fans stand up to the RIAA’s overreaching claims in court, how EFF has defended P2P software developers and their right to innovate, and how EFF has fought for a better way forward that gets artists paid without fans getting sued.
2003-12-19 The RIAA would like to “join your community”, but Federal Judge not want !
A federal appeals court on Friday handed a major setback to the record industry’s legal tactics for tracking down and suing alleged file swappers, in a high-profile case pitting copyright law against the privacy rights of Internet users.
Reversing a series of decisions in favor of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the Washington, D.C., court said copyright law did not allow the group to send out subpoenas asking Internet service providers for the identity of file swappers on their networks without a judge’s consent.
You can’t use your computer to play music you bought from them either !
Despite more than 20,000 lawsuits filed against music fans in the years since they started finding free tunes online rather than buying CDs from record companies, the recording industry has utterly failed to halt the decline of the record album or the rise of digital music sharing.
Still, hardly a month goes by without a news release from the industry’s lobby, the Recording Industry Association of America, touting a new wave of letters to college students and others demanding a settlement payment and threatening a legal battle.
Now, in an unusual case in which an Arizona recipient of an RIAA letter has fought back in court rather than write a check to avoid hefty legal fees, the industry is taking its argument against music sharing one step further: In legal documents in its federal case against Jeffrey Howell, a Scottsdale, Ariz., man who kept a collection of about 2,000 music recordings on his personal computer, the industry maintains that it is illegal for someone who has legallypurchased a CD to transfer that music into his computer.
2006-04-26 You don’t even have to have a computer !
The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) has made yet another mistake in its war against file sharers. This time, the group has sued the Walls family from Rockmart, GA. They are accused of sharing music by Whitney Houston, TLC and Bob Seger. Considering the popularity of the music, that sounds like it could be a valid charge by the RIAA - if the family actually had any Internet access… or a computer for that matter.
2009-02-06 sue, sue, sue, sue the hell out of your customers ! and investors too !
The ongoing lawsuit between Universal Music Group and online video site Veoh is seen by many as a precursor to the various lawsuits against YouTube (or, more specifically, the “big” lawsuit from Viacom). So far, it’s not going well for the content companies. In another lawsuit, filed by an adult video company, Veoh won easily. In the UMG case, the judge has already shot down Universal Music’s arguments for why Veoh shouldn’t get DMCA safe harbor protection.
The latest news is that the judge has also dismissed Universal Music’s attempt to include Veoh’s investors as a part of the lawsuit. Universal’s attempt to do this matched Universal’s decision to sue Bertelsmann, a competitor who was also an investor in Napster. This made little sense to us at the time. Making an investor liable for actions of a company they invest in seems to open up a pandora’s box of problems. Think of all the “shareholder lawsuits” you now see against management for corporate misdeeds… and turn that around, whereby anyone hurt by a company’s actions could sue all of the investors. If investors are liable for a company’s misdeeds, then suddenly it becomes a huge liability to invest in anything.
Eventually, Universal Music bought Bertelsmann… and rather than continue suing itself, Bertelsmann “settled.” Bertelsmann (now UMG) later settled similar lawsuits brought by other labels, so the full issue of investor liability wasn’t really addressed. In this case, the judge found that the only way Universal could make a credible claim that the investors were also liable was to show that they were actively encouraging increased copyright infringement after it was established that Veoh was infringing. That hasn’t been established yet, at all, and it appears that the investors were actively pushing Veoh to block infringing content. So, Universal’s claim against the investors has absolutely no merit whatsoever.
2008-01-12 remember all those old CDs you bought ? they aren’t yours ! don’t you dare giving them to others. they are Universal’s ! you must obey and buy their shit !
A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by major label Universal Music Group against a California man who sold promotional CDs from the label on eBay. U.S. District Court Judge S. James Otero ruled that the promo CDs are gifts distributed by UMG, as they are mailed free and unsolicited to thousands of people — including music journalists and radio stations — without any expectation or intention of their return.
The “first sale” doctrine says that once the copyright owner sells or gives away a copy of a CD, DVD, or book, the recipient is entitled to resell that copy without further permission from the copyright owner.
“This is a very important ruling for consumers, and not just those who buy or sell used CDs,” said Corynne McSherry, staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which represented defendant Troy Augusto.
“The right of first sale also protects libraries, used bookstores, and businesses that rent movies and videogames. This ruling affirms and protects the traditional balance between the rights of copyright owners and the rights of the public.”
this is from 2005-02-04, awesome achievement, really.
how much money did you squeeze from that deceased grandmother and her 17-year old granddaughter, dear Universal ?
did you join their community too ?
The recording industry’s latest assault on file sharing has netted an unusual suspect: a deceased great-grandmother from West Virginia. In a lawsuit filed in January, the RIAA accused 83-year old Gertrude Walton of sharing over 700 pop, rock and rap songs under the alias “smittenedkitten.”
What the RIAA didn’t know is that Walton had passed away in December following a long illness. Her daughter, Robin Chianumba, has lived with Walton for the past 17 years and told the Charleston Gazette that her mother refused to even have a computer in the house.