More great news of industry imploding
Holy $hit. what happened to "fair use"? I've been a strong advocate of copyright protection (perhaps until now!). This is totally ridiculous. I bought a CD, but I cannot listen to through my computer? For years computer companies have been urging us to copy software onto our hard drives and "archive" the original CD in case the hard drive is damaged or we get a new computer. This theory makes every computer owner who runs software from his hard drive instead of from teh CD it came on a crook. Bull puckey!!!
Damn you, you've upset swampwalker.
By that standard, people with iPod's are just as guilty.

iPods are tiny computers with RAM or mini hard drives containing music. Apple has sold hundreds of millions of these, guess it's time to build more jails for all us violators.
I'm sorry my friends. We are all in this together.
Can you imagine the soul-less balls of these "advisors" and feeding frenzy lawyers? Does this mean that all those casette tapes I copied back in the 80s are illegal immigrants to my music collection? What is going on here.
My son has been engaging me for some time in the debate over downloading music. With the exception of DRM, (which is only 1 step less obnoxious than the practice described in the link,) we have agreed to disagree about this. I may have to violate my sacred parental duty and agree with him ;~) I'd write my senator but Joe Leiberman has become an industry shill and Chris Dodd is spending all his time in Iowa. Oh well. Maybe I can get a cell next to Albert and we can bribe the guards to let us spin some vinyl, if we promise not to convert it to those nasty bits and bytes! Meanwhile, I'll listen to John Fogarty's newest and wish you all a happy, digitally enhanced new year.
This is disgusting. The recording industry is simply shooting itself in the foot with this kind of attitude. Obviously, it is completely unenforcible on a large scale, but they're completely out to lunch on this.

Maybe the recording industry will see sites like (which offers DRM-free downloads from independent musicians) proliferate, and begin to emulate their business model. But I'm not holding my breath.

If you extend this logic to its ultimate conclusion it is, therfore, illegal to listen to your own CD.
Relax everybody, the Washington Post got this story completely wrong. The guy had 2,300 songs he ripped from his own cd's available in his Kazaa sharing folder. He also openly admitted that he was sharing songs.

Read the 9 page Summary Judgment by the judge at the link.


I. Background

In an effort to reduce online infringement of copyrights they hold to sound recordings of various musical artists, Plaintiffs Atlantic Recording Corporation, Elektra Entertainment Group, Inc., Warner Bros. Records, Inc., Capitol Records, Inc., UMG Recordings, Inc., Sony BMG Music Entertainment, and Arista Records (collectively, the “recording companies”) hired an investigation company, MediaSentry, to detect unauthorized distribution and reproduction of the recordings in online file-sharing systems. At 1:52 a.m. Eastern Time on January 30, 2006, MediaSentry detected an individual who had 4,007 files available in a shared folder on the Kazaa online file-sharing system. The investigation showed that 2,329 of the files were sound recordings. The relevant Internet service provider, Cox Communications, Inc., identified the IP address associated with the shared folder as registered to a Pamela Howell in Scottsdale, Arizona. Pamela Howell is Defendant Jeffrey Howell’s wife.

During the investigation, MediaSentry took screenshots (images of a computer screen display) showing the contents of the Kazaa shared folder. The folder and the files it
contained were registered to the Kazaa username jeepkiller@kazaa.” Jeffrey Howell (“Howell”) created both the username and the shared folder after downloading the Kazaa file-sharing program to his previous computer. When he bought his current computer he “networked both the computers together and transferred [his] old files to [his] new
computer.” (Doc. #31, Ex. 9 at 164.) Thus, at the time of the MediaSentry investigation, Howell’s computer had his “entire body of Kazaa downloads on it from [his] old computer” along with additional files he added to the Kazaa collection. Id. The files, available to all other Kazaa users for download from the shared folder, included 54 specific sound recordings of musical artists for which the recording companies own valid copyrights.

The recording companies filed this action for copyright infringement against Howell and his wife on August 29, 2006, and now move for summary judgment on that claim, arguing that there is no disputed material fact that Howell violated their exclusive distribution right for the 54 identified sound recordings.

B. Plaintiffs Have Established Copyright Infringement

Under 17 U.S.C. § 106(3), distribution of copyrighted material need not involve a physical transfer. “[T]he owner of a collection of works who makes them available to the public may be deemed to have distributed copies of the works” in violation of copyright law. Perfect 10, Inc. v., Inc., 487 F.3d 701, 718-19 (9th Cir. 2007) (citing Hotaling v. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, 118 F.3d 199, 203 (4th Cir. 1997)). Thus, in Napster, Inc., users of the online file-sharing program Napster were found to have violated copyright owners’ distribution rights by employing “the Napster software to make their collections available to all other Napster users.” Perfect 10, Inc., 487 F.3d at 719 (citing 239
F.3d at 1011-14).

Several cases suggest that Kazaa users commit direct infringement by employing the Kazaa program to make their collections of copyrighted sound recordings available to all
other Kazaa users. In Arista Records v. Greubel, 453 F. Supp. 2d 961, 969 (N.D. Tex. 2006), a set of screenshots showing the contents of a defendant’s Kazaa shared folder was found to present a cognizable claim for copyright infringement under 17 U.S.C. § 106(3). Warner Bros. Records, Inc. v. Payne, 2006 WL 2844415, at *4 (W.D. Tex. July 17, 2006), equated the placement of items in a Kazaa shared folder with “publication” as defined by 17 U.S.C. § 101 because it is a distribution, or an offer of distribution “in which further distribution, public performance or display is contemplated.” It is no defense that a Kazaa user did not directly oversee the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material. Interscope Records v. Duty, 2006 WL 988086, at *2 (D. Ariz. Apr. 14, 2006) (noting that the mere presence of copyrighted sound recordings in a defendant’s Kazaa shared folder may constitute copyright

There is no genuine issue of material fact as to the second element of the recording companies’ claim of direct infringement via distribution. Howell admitted in his deposition that the sound recordings were being distributed from his Kazaa shared folder:

Q: So each of the songs that you acknowledge were on your computer in Schedule 1, Exhibit A, all of which research [sic] – represent subsets of what’s in the thicker packet –

[Howell]: Yes.

Q: – that was Exhibit B to the complaint1 and Exhibit 3 to the deposition, are things that you acknowledge that on the date of capture, January 30th, 2006, were seen by plaintiffs as being shared by your Kazaa account?

[Howell]: Yes.
(Doc. # 30 at 8.)

Howell claims he was at work when MediaSentry took the screenshots showing the contents of his Kazaa shared folder, but presents no admissible evidence to support his claim
that he was at work at 11:52 p.m. on January 29, 2006,2 the time when the distribution was detected. In any event, whether Howell was at work at the time MediaSentry captured
screenshots of his Kazaa shared folder is irrelevant when he admitted distributing the sound recordings from his shared folder, and when the mere presence of copyrighted works in a
shared folder is enough to trigger liability. Duty, 2006 WL 988086 at *2.
If I use an in-house network to wireless beam my music from room to room,
am I then broadcasting and subject to royalty payments? If a neighbor picks
up my wireless signal (without my consent), then am I distributing
copyrighted material?
Onhwy61 - the answers are "yes" and "yes". Technically. I doubt the RIAA is crusing neighborhoods looking for stray wi-fi broadcasts, but you are breaking the law as it stands. Then again, you do the same when you drive 65 in a 55. Are you going to stop doing that?

One way to share without being on the RIAA's radar screen is to use a private hub that is open by invitation only. This technology works quite well, and is un-detectable by the RIAA unlees you happen to invite one of them to the party...

I have no problem with burning a copy of a CD for people you know or for the car or truck but you are talking about the age of computer people. Go to and hunt around and you will find people offering their whole entire music catalog for download for free. All you have to do is e mail them. The artist is getting the shaft and I can care less what happens to the Music Corp. They have been over charging us for stuff for years but when they rammed the CD medium down our throats and charged more for a product that cost them 2/3 less to manufactur as it says in the good book You Reap What You Sow.
Think positive. No more audiophile (us) bulls..t!
Whenever we want to hear some music, we'll just have to hire the band!
Of course, real audiophiles will hire the orchestra.
Rlwainwright, others:
so what we can deduce is it might actually be illegal to copy our cd collection onto our hardrives and use wifi/ethernet and Slimdevices Transporter/Squeezbox, or any other network player to distribute the music for in home personal playback? If so why have not the feds shutdown Logitech and equivalnets for endorsing this illegal "process"?
Things seem to not be adding up here.
The music industry is not the only avenue of outright thievery in the USA. McDonald's charges $1.78 for 12 oz of dasani repackaged tap water. Sure, no one forces you to buy bottled water or overvalued cd's but when are we going to stop whining and start a revolution? How long are we forced to bend over and take it up the @#$%@#$??? What can the average citizen do? I'm trying real hard to think +

Over and out.
Well I can see the industry's point to a certain extent. Why buy a CD, if you can go to somebody's website and download whatever CDs they have stored there "for free"? Especially if someone, has thousands of titles on their site. It's one thing, to have your own collection on your hard drive, or even making an extra copy of a CD for your personal use in your car, or downloading it to your own personal Ipod. But it's something completely different, when you leave you collection open so that "ANYBODY" with a computer and internet connection can easily access it, then the industry has a "valid point" about shutting these sites down. It's a helluva lot of money being lost. And for those who go to these sites, and download whole commercial CDs simple because they can and it's free. Then you're "theives" pure and simple, and please "spare" the justification that it's "alright" because the recording industry charges so much per CD, ect. If you take without paying the legimate owners what it's worth, then it's theft.
I rip retail purchased CD's to my computer so I can load them to my iPod. I have never downloaded any music, not so much as a single song, legally or illegally.

If it becomes illegal to copy CD's to my iPod, I suggest Apple and everyone that produces products that support that activity would have to stop manufacturing. I don't think that's going to happen.

What probably will happen is everything move to a system where all digital content is downloaded and managed as "locked" content. Apple has iTunes locked so my son and I cannot share music, even though our computers are linked.

This is what RIAA want's, a way to stop all sharing so everyone pays for what they hear. I think it goes a bit far when members of the same family can't load each others content.

I agree they have a problem and the "sharing" as it's being done now is theft of creative properly.
Darkmoebius- Whew! Thanks for clearing that up. Now I won't have to tell my son he is right ;~). Unlike Albert, I have downloaded music, but only what was available for free from some artist's own sites. A good marketing tool, IMO. And now Kubla, you can rest easy; I'm upset no longer!!!
While I, too, believe in the importance of copyright protection (I am a professional writer), the music industry is flailing madly as it crashes against the rocks of its own stupidity and arrogance. Terrorizing private citizens, especially those who purchase music legally, will accomplish nothing and, instead, only hasten the demise of the greedy corporate bastards who ruined the music business a long time ago. Do any of these fools remember prohibition or Fascism? Abusing the law to change public behavior never works. The stubborn turds who ran the music industry headfirst into the ground only confirm they have no clue how to save things when they resort to such spiteful, desperate tactics. May they all end up penniless singing for their suppers.
There's a HUGE difference between what the RIAA's lawyers argued and what the judge actually found/upheld.

Washington Post article:

The industry's lawyer in the case, Ira Schwartz, argues in a brief filed earlier this month that the MP3 files Howell made on his computer from legally bought CDs are "unauthorized copies" of copyrighted recordings...

RIAA's hard-line position seems clear. Its Web site says: "If you make unauthorized copies of copyrighted music recordings, you're stealing. You're breaking the law and you could be held legally liable for thousands of dollars in damages."

The judge's ruling completely ignores the industry's ridiculous claim that any copy, even for personal use, of their copyrighted material is infringement.

Instead, he focused on the core material issues of copyright ownership and then copyright infringement with regards to unauthorized distribution, i.e. "the mere presence of copyrighted sound recordings in a defendant’s Kazaa shared folder may constitute copyright infringement".

It is highly unlikely that the record companies and RIAA will get any legal traction with the notion that any and all digital copies for personal use of legally purchased recordings are infringement because that issue was argued 10 ways to Sunday in the 70's regarding cassette tapes and the industry never really won back then.
You are ALL GUILTy until proven innocent!!
That is, you are just guilty!
I now impose a life sentence on each and every one of you to be forced to listen to Barry Manilow forever... The same crappy song, endlessly on a 1968 Woolworth $5 transistor radio played at maximum volume. It will be implanted inside your brain... you are all doomed.
(and for those special few Manilow fans, they get Linkin Park!)
LOL Elizabeth... What if you like both Barry AND Linkin Park? Personally I'd recommend a sentence of Ethel Merman's greatest hits on scratchy 78s played from 11pm to 4am each night.

Actually, I was kinda surprised the WP got it so wrong... As far as I can tell, the RIAA is not suing Howell for anything other than to make another example of someone and to cement the idea that "distribution" using file-sharing networks is as unauthorised as downloading from those networks (precedent here set in BMG Music vs Gonzalez). While not actually profit-seeking, making available to others so that they could illegally download should they so seek could be seen as some sort of "intent to deprive owners of economic value."

It will be difficult to make "copies intended for personal use made in a different format for use at a different time" a breach of "Fair Use" because there is already substantial legal precedent to uphold legality of doing so. The recent effort by the RIAA to make the MP3 format itself a legally-defined 'bad thing' will not work, and in my opinion would probably backfire.
I would love to see today's artist circumvent that greedy recording industry and take a new route for distributing their music.
If the artists unite and create their own distribution site with options to buy singles or whole albums and ask the public in return for fair prices to support their craft this may lead to the end of RIAA.
I am very tired of this corporation nation ruining so many lives.
I try to support the little guy all I can.
If this attitude catches a little traction it can change things for the better.
Get corporations out of our government!!!!!
I may be naive in many ways(wasn't born into the el#tist society)) but I know that protecting myself from the manipulation and sublminal messages found on tv(tv is never ever on) and advertisements is going in the right direction.
We are being manipulated whether anyone wants to believe it or not.
Time to venture forth to the used record stores and make use of the trusty old RCM. Hey, you can't beat vinyl, and this is one more reason to go for it with gusto.