On Jan. 24th The United States Senate is going to vote on Protect-IP Act otherwise known as PIPA. This bill is likely going to pass despite the fact the people in Washington are completely clueless to the technology they’re regulating or what is really going on in the industry or how the technology is actually being used.
Is Congress being for real right now?
When Congress and the RIAA says “Rogue Websites” do they mean the tools the artists are using to connect directly with their fans and distribute their own music? I mean I’m just wondering because I could make this post 20+ pages of screen shots showing examples of artists utilizing these “ROGUE WEBSITES” the RIAA is trying to get Congress to pass legislation and scrub from the internet.
Reality Check: [blackbirdpie url="https://twitter.com/#!/rickyrozay/status/154319773843472384"]
Holy creative ways to monetize while connecting with fans and giving music away for free, Batman! On a “Rogue” site targeted in Group M’s blacklist as part of Big Content’s ‘Private Right to Action’ no less. No hearing required!
Look, I’m not saying things are perfect, but to insinuate these artists, their management, and the departments at the labels that deal with promotion and marketing don’t know the environment and they are not using it successfully to their advantage is preposterous. Artists using a medium where they can connect directly with fans and distribute promotional music and videos for free with the intent of building a bigger fan base who WILL pay is a death sentence for the trade groups and legacy companies who refuse to adapt and innovate.
That’s not to say piracy does not exist; the guy selling a CD on a random corner in some big city, and the guy who has nothing but full length commercial albums available for download is certainly committing copyright infringement. But contrary to what the trade groups would like you to believe not everything being labeled as piracy is piracy, especially when the work is being used exactly as intended. Also, please don’t be confused with scary terms like “unauthorized leaks” or even the word “leak.” Over here in reality land those are marketing buzz words designed to make something go viral. If something is legitimately unauthorized any ethical website will remove it immediately and without hesitation, once informed.
So who exactly is Congress trying to protect? The content creators or trade groups with deep pockets who become obsolete if the majors fully embrace technology and innovate? Truth be told there are some incredibly smart people in the urban internet world who’d be amazing assets to the legacy industry in adapting to the marketplace. If only they’d utilize them.
One of the most disturbing things to come out of the SOPA hearings is how gullible many members of Congress appear to be and how technically inept many are in Washington. If you don’t understand the technology it is not OK to say you don’t get it while turning around and saying you don’t believe the people who do. (I’m looking right at you Mr. Watts) Generation Gaps are no excuse, you’re in what amounts to a management position and you should be qualified to hold that position when you are dealing with my generation and our children’s generation economic future. Your lack of knowledge is not an excuse for the loss of any American’s Constitutional Rights. To essentially shoulder shrug like you’re cute when something that important is at stake is reprehensible. If anyone in Congress, The White House, DOJ, ICE, Homeland Security, or any other branch of Government’s knowledge in technology stops somewhere around 1997 then it is time to retire as you are no longer qualified to hold your position in 2012. At the very least get educated or seek a different committee placement that does not have you legislating things you are not qualified to legislate. Voting ignorantly is voting negligently, it’s like giving a gun to a 5 year old and when an American Citizen has his Constitutional Rights violated as a result, such as what happened in the case of this website for the last year, people should be removed from their positions. I don’t care what their voter record or past accomplishments are. That is absolutely unacceptable.
Where I come from you stay one step ahead of the game or you get left behind. Destroying the Constitution, fragmenting the internet, and hurting the artists you claim you’re trying to protect because a bunch of legacy companies make bad business decisions that result in them being left behind and alienating themselves from the people who could help them catch up seems like horrible legislation to me. To think the world’s population living in reality land isn’t going to respond by finding a way around the crappy and extremely misguided legislation effectively causing all the bad things the “nerds” say will happen is gross willful ignorance. Unless you’re owned by the trade groups whose very existence is at stake and your role is to expand the vague free for all you snuck into Pro-IP. And if that’s the case, if you’re cashing their contribution checks, accepting their gifts and perks and then misusing your position to keep the horse buggy business in control of the roads by seizing the steering wheels then at least do the American people the solid of not insulting our intelligence and being honest about it.
Oh, and if you’re an American Citizen reading this, especially one associated to urban media or an artist who relies on the internet to connect with your fans and promote music it’s time to speak up. This does concern you. There are tools available at AmericanCensorship.org to assist in contacting your Representatives. PIPA will pass the Senate at the end of this month if we don’t make it clear to Congress these bills are a horrible idea that should not be supported.