RIAA Shifts The Debate To Make The Broadcast Flag Seem More Palatable

from the fun-for-the-whole-family dept

It would appear that the RIAA and the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) are having a bit of a public spat over the question of encrypting HD radio broadcasts. The RIAA is demanding that broadcasters encrypt their broadcasts out of their continued irrational fear that someone, somewhere might record it (you know, like regular radio). As the NAB points out, if someone out there is really intent on getting a high quality recording of some song for nefarious reasons, there are a lot easier places to go than an HD radio broadcast. Not only that, but forcing broadcasters to get new equipment would be quite expensive and slow down the move to HD radio (though, some may point out that move is already a bit on the slow side). The RIAA’s response pulls out the typical RIAA line about how encryption “is necessary to preserve the future of music for the health of both of our industries,” though it’s pretty easy to make a case for how encryption actually harms both their industries. Though, the RIAA’s Mitch Bainwol suggests some sort of “compromise” — which is the broadcast flag option that has already been shown to be a terrible idea that even entertainment execs will admit is really designed to cause problems for consumers more than stop any actual infringement. This is how the RIAA wins — by shifting the debate. Suddenly the “broadcast flag” is seen as a “compromise” other than a truly problematic idea.

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