Just days after a US court ruled that selling promo CDs sent out by the recording industry is perfectly legal
, Techdirt reader cram
writes in to let us know of a DJ and music reviewer in London who was arrested for doing exactly the same thing
. The only difference in this case was that the guy was selling the CDs before they had been released. Still, this seems positively ridiculous. As we had just noted, while some places do treat pre-release leaks differently, UK law does not
. Furthermore, he's being charged with theft and money laundering. He was turned in by the IFPI, which apparently thinks that jailing the folks who promote your product is a good thing. What's not entirely clear from the article is whether this guy was sent these CDs by the labels in the first place. However, it does sound like he got them as part of his role as a DJ and reviewer, since the IFPI even mentions that "people who have access to pre-release music by virtue of their job," should watch out. If he really was "stealing" them, that's one thing -- but if the industry was sending them to him to promote the CDs, then hopefully the UK courts will react similarly to the US courts and quickly throw this out. Once they've sent him the CDs, they're his. They're no longer the record label's. That he was arrested for selling something willingly given to him to promote seems ridiculous.