Recording Industry: Radio Is Piracy, But Not Playing Our Music Is A Federal Offense
from the logic-much? dept
It appears that the big record labels and their lobbyists aren’t content with just suing and shaking down students across the country — now they want to threaten them for taking a political stand as well. Earlier this week, musicFIRST, the big time lobbying group put together by the RIAA to push for the highly questionable Performance Rights tax on radio stations, did a neat little publicity stunt where it asked the FCC to investigate radio stations that apparently were “boycotting” musicians who supported the Performance Rights tax, claiming that it was an abuse of the airwaves. Remember, this is the same group that just recently called radio “a kind of piracy.”
So, wait, which is it? If it’s a kind of piracy to play songs on the radio, shouldn’t musicFIRST and the RIAA be thrilled that radio stations aren’t playing their music? Or do they recognize the free promotional benefits radio provides for artists? They can’t have it both ways, can they? First they’re upset that the music is being “pirated” and now they’re upset that it’s not being “pirated”? Please explain!
Now, as for those nasty nasty radio stations “boycotting” certain artists, well who are they? Turns out one of the main culprits is a tiny 100-watt high school radio station who has explained, in great detail the reasons behind their political stance. They are making a political choice by purposely boycotting musicians who support the view that playing their songs on the radio is “a kind of piracy.” You would think that would make musicFIRST, the RIAA and those musicians happy. But, more to the point, that music “boycott” was a temporary thing, and lasted for one month, from mid-June 2007 until mid-July of that same year. Yes. It lasted for one month, to make a political statement, and it happened two years ago. And suddenly the RIAA/musicFIRST wants an FCC investigation? Of a bunch of high schoolers making a political statement against a tax that would harm their educational radio station by not “pirating” materials that the lobbyists claim are pirated?