IFPI Taken over by The Pirate Bay!

October 16, 2007

IFPI via The Pirate Bay

The good folks at Mashable have picked-up the story on what has to be the best set-up for a prank ever. It appears that the domain IFPI.com has fallen into the hands of the merry swashbuckling crew at The Pirate Bay. The domain IFPI.org still goes to the older IFPI site, belonging to International Federation of the Phonographic Industry. However now the domain IFPI.com takes you to the International Federation of Pirates Interest. Now that sounds like an interesting organization. I wonder what their membership dues are. For those that dont know, the IFPI is the international version of the RIAA and has been trying to shutdown the Pirate Bay for years.

The original story came from Ernesto over TorrentFreak.


The Pseudo-death knell of AllofMP3

July 3, 2007

screenhunter_001.jpgIt seems that after months of slow economic starvation AllofMP3.com is finally no more. Over the last few years the IFPI and RIAA have mounted a sustained assault on the site, which followed the letter of Russian law, but sold music in a format (MP3) and for a price (cheap as hell) that the dying recording industry disliked. For the music industry this was a long, hard fight and their victory would be a whole lot sweeter if AllofMP3.com hadn’t already reopened under a different name. The new site called Mp3sparks, has all of the features and functionality you loved in Allofmp3.com. Your old Allofmp3.com username and password are supposed to work on Mp3sparks.com although it hasnt for me. Credit cards are still not accepted on the site but its unclear if thats due to the old credit card monopoly ban on ALLofMP3 or a simple technical glitch. Hopefully, MP3Sparks can fill the gap left by the hobbling (and now full closure of ALLofMP3.com) but until it gets credit card payments up I dont recommend you let your BitTorrent ratio’s slide.


RIAA Sultans of Spin: Survey Data From 1,077 Internet Users

April 23, 2007

riaasul.jpgA Pew Research report it aint, but the good folks at P2pnet.net have released the raw data from their online survey of Internet users, entitled “Sultans of Spin“. The data is released under the creative commons license and is in MS access format for easy crunching if your a database geek (I’m not). I mentioned the report last week and while I hear the folks at P2Pnet have caught a lot of flack for the survey its a great resource for getting the pulse of the folks the RIAA’s lawsuits are intended to pawn. If you do anything with the numbers ping me so I can get a look. Here is the data file zipped.


What Evil File-traders Think about the Virtuous RIAA

April 15, 2007

Last week, I mentioned the survey from P2Pnet.net, that AllofMP3.com was promoting on their homepage. Well the good folks at P2Pnet have released some initial data and say they will release the entire data-set on Monday. So far they have over 750 respondents and what looks like some really good directional information on the thinking of at least a segment of the file sharing community. Watch for the full data, including answers to open-ended questions, to go live later this week and I’ll try to keep track of anyone that crunches the numbers and makes interesting connections.


ALLofMP3.com: Voice Your Opinion of RIAA

April 13, 2007

allofmp31.jpgOur Russian friends over at ALLofMP3.com are showing the kind of staying power that would make Lexington Steel proud. Despite being perpetually attacked by the bulldogs of the copyright industries ALLofMP3.com continues to evolve their offering and enhance their site. While checking out their latest upgrades I came across a rather incongruous image on the home page.

It was a link in the news section directing people to take a survey being conducted by the good folks at P2Pnet.net a site dedicated to news with a distint anti-RIAA flavor. The survey is being billed as the first online survey of perceptions of the RIAA and its title, The Sultans of Spin, shouldn’t in anyway skew the results.

ALLofMp3.com decision to feature the survey on their homepage is what struck me as strange. Last year the US trade rep was on the war path and tried to get Russian strongman Vladimir “toxic tea” Putin to shut the site down. ALLofMP3.com responded by starting a half-hearted attempt to get their side of the story out but ended-up just ignoring the public altogether. ALLofMP3 seemed more comfortable trying to avoid confrontations with the IFPI, RIAA and BPI by putting out luke warm statements asserting the legality of their service under Russian law. This is what made the prominent placement of what is clearly anti-RIAA propaganda so shocking. When the upgraded their site did they increase the amount of backboneas well?


EMI Goes DRM Free. Offers MP3 trade-in. Really!

April 2, 2007

images.jpgI know I couldnt believe it myself. But unless everyone from the BBC to the WSJ has gotten it wrong its no joke. Sure it was first reported by the good folks that brought you the RARA joke but thats just a coincidence. The jist of this is that EMI will be releasing DRM free versions of some of its catalogue on iTunes. From the press release come news of their upgrade program:

Consumers who have already purchased standard tracks or albums with DRM will be able to upgrade their digital music for $0.30/€0.30/£0.20 per track. All EMI music videos will also be available on the iTunes Store DRM-free with no change in price.

Its only taken 10 years for one of the labels to finally give-in and that seems to only have happened with the prodding of iPod/iTunes maven Steve Jobs, who was on hand with the iPhone to show of the new EMI tracks. EMI remains the only major to make this transition but watch for the others to follow lemming like their decision within the year.

EMI has started down the road to building a digital music business by tearing down one of the many roadblocks to competing with free alternatives. Its a start. So happy trails EMI and best of luck.


MAJOR RECORD LABELS WITHDRAW FROM RIAA

April 1, 2007

garland_logo-1.gifThis amazing bit of news was forwarded by Fred Benenson of Free Culture @ NYU. It’s amazing news and a critical development for the online music space. You can get more information at the RARA site and I’ve duplicated their message in full below without commentary:

From: Press Contact <respectartistaudience@gmail.com>
Date: Mar 31, 2007 7:58 PM
Subject: MAJOR RECORD LABELS WITHDRAW FROM RIAA

MAJOR RECORD LABELS WITHDRAW FROM RIAA
Apple and Microsoft Help Launch RARA: Respect Artist, Respect Audience

April 1, 2007 (Hollywood, CA) – In a major break from the litigious and often alienating strategy pursued by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) against everyone from preteens to college students and grandmothers, the four major record labels have decided to drop all pending lawsuits and instead join with Apple and Microsoft to eliminate Digital Rights Management (DRM) from music sales. The companies are joining other personal electronics manufacturers and independent labels in a new organization, Respect the Artist, Respect the Audience (RARA).

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How The Pirate Bay could save AllofMP3 and go Legit

January 16, 2007

The image “https://i2.wp.com/static.thepiratebay.org/doodles/sealand.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.The swash-buckling lads at the The Pirate Bay have started taking donations to buy a bankrupt, burnt-out, rusting hull in the North Sea off the coast of Britain called Sealand. The sheer audaciousness of the move is matched only by the opportunities it presents for the development and proliferation of new models in the sale and distribution of digital media, unfettered by the protectionist inclinations of dying industries. If the good folks at the Pirate Bay expand their plan and get the cash rich but time poor AllofMP3 involved it could usher in a new era of big media hand-wringing and headline worthy law suits.

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Ugliness in the Music Business

December 8, 2006

I’m told there was a time when the music industry was a place of beauty and wonder. A place where the average person could hear the soundtrack of their lives or float away on the sirens call of a muse. I’m told these things but I dont remember them.

Two new stories add their wedge in ever expanding chasm between the music industry and their intended customers. Both are from the appropriately named Recording Industry vs The People and they highlight the clear death of the moral economy that may have helped the music industry remain afloat. The first one is a tale of lies and greed,apparently the RIAA’s greed got the best of them and they lied in a letter to the courts in an attempt to extort money from a a Queens mom with MS. The second story is yet another RIAA inspired lawsuit, but this time a group of folks that got shook down for a few grand by the RIAA are suing the makers of Kazaa for basically setting them up to get sued by the RIAA.

Why the music industry is so glib about throwing away its relationship with its customers will always baffle me.


Ouch! Internet Gets to Wipe it’s RIAA

November 20, 2006

How do you express your contempt for an organization that has pursued suing its customers as its business strategy? Well if your an online novelty shop with a sense of humor you express your contempt by offering rolls of toilet paper with the initials of the Recording Industry Ass of America on it. For $6 per roll, expressing your outrage by wiping your ass with the Recording Industry Ass of America is a bit costly, but from the testimonials its well worth it. I cant help but wonder what organization is more reviled, the Bush White House or the RIAA. (via BoingBoing)