Recording Industry To Baidu: Look, We know You Beat Us In Court, But Just Do What We Want Anyway, Mmkay?

from the how-do-you-say-eat-me-in-chinese? dept

Let me tell you a story.  I come from a home of two children and I'm the oldest of two boys.  One day, my mother made chocolate eclairs.  Quickly, of course, because my father eats like a bear that's had its stomach pumped, we were down to the final eclair.  My brother insisted he should get the last eclair.  I reminded him that I'm roughly twice his size and could take the damn eclair anytime I felt like it.  My mother, in her esteemed fairness, gave the eclair to my brother.

That woman always hated me.

In any case, I proceeded to corner my little brother as he held onto his sweet chocolate and pudding prize, and explained to him that it would be better for everyone if he just ignored Judge Mother's ruling and gave me the eclair instead.  All manner of good things would follow, I insisted.  And do you know what that little ginger-haired jerk did?  He smiled at me, patted me on the shoulder, and shoved every last ounce of that 8 inch eclair into his mouth, rolling his eyes in exaggerated pleasure as he did so.

Witness the collective music industry reacting to their sound defeat in Chinese Court while accusing Baidu and Sohu of copyright infringement for indexing links to MP3 files.  Now, there's been some likely fair concern that Baidu may be hiding some actual hosting of infringing files, but the music labels apparently didn't come close to proving that in court as it seems the main issue discussed in the trial was their linking to infringing files.  But the point is they lost.  The judge, like my tyrantess of a mother, raised Baidu's arm and pronounced them the victors.

And so the collective music industry has gone to the Financial Times (found via PaidContent.org) to basically ask Baidu to ignore the ruling and do what they ask anyway because of all the great and wonderful things that will come once they do.  They're basically pulling my routine after I lost my delicious eclair, but their letters offer up some wonderful doozies:

"This is a country with twice as many internet users as the US, but where legitimate music consumption is miniscule, with digital revenues per user at less than 1% of the US equivalent."

Damn Chinese people, always refusing to spend as much as Americans on music.  Nevermind the cultural differences that may be coming into play here.  Nevermind that the nominal GDP for the United States is some thirteen times that of China.  We want the Chinese to pay as much for their music as Americans, damn it, and the way to do that is to get Baidu to voluntarily limit their own search results.  And that's exactly what the Financial Times letter indicates:

 "Baidu is the biggest source of this problem, with its MP3 music search service estimated to be responsible for over 50% of infringing music distribution in China.  It has the means to bring immediate change by proactively filtering infringing works from this service."

So, you see, if Baidu would just filter out the infringing content, relatively poor Chinese citizens would suddenly spend big bucks for music.  And perhaps Ferraris.  Ooooh, and those sweet 100 ft. yachts I'm sure they'd all like to actually pay for if they had any damn money!

My brother didn't have any money either, but he had his chocolate eclair, so he told me shove my request in places that usually only pornstars put things.  I expect Baidu will respond in similar fashion.



Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

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    Pickle Monger (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 1:23pm

    Fair is fair...

    I checked the link to the article and clicked through on some related links. So riddle me this: the suit was brought by International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI). (That's Phonographic not that other thing!) It represents worlds biggest record labels though none of the ones from mainland China... It does include the Honk Kong-based labels though a number of them are just local subsidiaries of the American and European labels. So obviously the reason people in China spend so little on their music is because there's no possible reason why people in China would spend money on the music from labels not represented by IFPI, say those from CHINA!

     

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      Dark Helmet (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 1:30pm

      Re: Fair is fair...

      I noticed that as well, although I wasn't quite clear on whether the Chinese member signing the letter was from the mainland or Hong Kong. Sounds like this is even stupider than I thought....

      Can you imagine the look on a Chinese laborer's face if you played him some Beber?

       

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        TheStupidOne, Mar 25th, 2011 @ 1:39pm

        Re: Re: Fair is fair...

        *A quizzical expression appears on a middle aged Chinese man's face

        Is that a girl?

         

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        Pickle Monger (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 1:49pm

        Re: Re: Fair is fair...

        About 10 years ago while working at a summer camp I witnessed one of my fellow counsellors watching Britney Spears gyrate on stage (the type of performance immortalised by Lewis Black's description of the Pepsi commercial); she looked at the TV completely entranced and dreamily uttered: "She is SO talented." Forget the Chinese labourer: I don't even understand the people who like that music over here. Though I suspect that Bieber and Spears and others aren't all that different from the Cantopop stars.

         

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          Dark Helmet (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 1:55pm

          Re: Re: Re: Fair is fair...

          Well, I don't get it either, but add to that all the cultural differences, not mention language, and I imagine the reaction might be a tad more severe....

           

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          Rekrul, Mar 25th, 2011 @ 2:08pm

          Re: Re: Re: Fair is fair...

          About 10 years ago while working at a summer camp I witnessed one of my fellow counsellors watching Britney Spears gyrate on stage (the type of performance immortalised by Lewis Black's description of the Pepsi commercial); she looked at the TV completely entranced and dreamily uttered: "She is SO talented." Forget the Chinese labourer: I don't even understand the people who like that music over here.

          Back when Britney was young and cute, I used to like watching her gyrate on stage. Of course that was before she got married, had a couple kids and lost her mind.

           

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            Dark Helmet (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 2:17pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Fair is fair...

            "Back when Britney was young and cute, I used to like watching her gyrate on stage. Of course that was before she got married, had a couple kids and lost her -figure-."

            FTFY. Stop pretending like her mind ever mattered....

             

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            Pickle Monger (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 2:28pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Fair is fair...

            Who was it that said: Britney might be unlistenable but she's not unwatchable"?

             

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              JMT, Mar 25th, 2011 @ 5:16pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Fair is fair...

              I caught "Hit Me Baby One More Time" on TV the other day, first time I'd seen it in years.

              Couldn't... look... away...

               

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    Paul Renault (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 1:39pm

    Fair is fair...ver2

    The judge should give Baidu a mulligan, no?

    /I would have done the same thing your brother did.

     

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    Jesse Jenkins, Mar 25th, 2011 @ 2:29pm

    Your Mom

    I can't figure out how to forward this blog to your mom. I'm sure she will be shocked! Not by the way you represent her in the description, but that you called her a "tryantess". I'm sure she interpreted that as "tyrantess", but she's upset with your spelling.

    P.S. I did forward it to your brother.

     

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    The eejit (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 2:31pm

    So...

    The Chinese could actually bitchslap the entire American economy if the IFPI continue down this path; the method would be simple - they'd simply stop producing items like the iPad.

    The Chinese would not be the pople I'd want to piss off right now, when they can end your countries' economies on a whim.

     

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    crade (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 2:34pm

    "estimated to be responsible for over 50%"
    Hey, they are also estimated to be responsible for less than 0.02%.. look at that, estimates from sources for unknown reasons don't seem to mean much.. Surprise Surprise

     

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    Capitalist Lion Tamer (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 2:38pm

    Um...

    My brother didn't have any money either, but he had his chocolate eclair, so he told me shove my request in places that usually only pornstars put things.

    So you shoved your request repeatedly into other people in various badly-lit positions?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 25th, 2011 @ 2:58pm

    Cool story bro.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 25th, 2011 @ 3:21pm

    oi Tim!

    "with digital revenues per user at less than 1% of the US equivalent."

    Just for clarification, is that revenue to 'merican companies or revenue total ?
    i can totally see it being the first, not so much the second.

     

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    Richard (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 4:10pm

    What if

    China protests that people in the US don't buy enough Chinese music - makes about as much sense

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 25th, 2011 @ 4:19pm

    That woman always hated me.

    Is that why you shill for td now?

     

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    J.J. (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 5:06pm

    Tim Tim Tim!
    "with digital revenues per user at less than 1% of the US equivalent."

    Just for clarification, is that revenue to 'merican companies or revenue total ?
    i can totally see it being the first, not so much the second.


    my post but somehow my cookie for being logged in keeps getting eaten, but do you have an answer on that ?

     

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    marak (profile), Mar 25th, 2011 @ 9:54pm

    Never mind that the music industry is doing its usual... your brother can deepthroat an eclair!?! o.0.... He'd be popular in sydney at a certain time of year.

     

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