Dear Recording Industry: Three Strikes Won't Save Your Business

from the please-stop-thinking-it-will dept

At this year’s Midem, there was still a fair bit of talk about the various “three strikes” proposals around the world that get ISPs to kick people accused (not convicted) of file sharing offline. To hear supporters tell it, the concept of “three strikes” is gaining widespread support and is really going to save the industry. Of course, the reality is quite different. Michael Geist details the state of such proposals around the globe, noting that while a few countries have implemented them, many others are rejecting them. At the same time, he highlights the high costs of implementing such proposals — without any evidence that they will actually get people to buy more music. While supporters of such proposals may think that there’s momentum behind them, if you look at the details, it seems like pretty limited support, and the plans that are in place don’t seem likely to do much other than frustrate and annoy people.

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Comments on “Dear Recording Industry: Three Strikes Won't Save Your Business”

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49 Comments
ECA (profile) says:

vERY FUNNY..

NOW,
get those companies to PAY for the enforcement of these laws.

ALSO, they should remember, that even Youtube has illegal material, ACCORDING to these companies. its to easy to get this stuff on your system.
Its like saying…THERE IS NOT PORN on my computer. I dont watch that stuff.

Another interesting point I can make. Is the BBC trying to FIND all the Dr. Who stories.
The BBC reuses their TAPES, and had ERASED 90% of the series. They called around the world, and even used the NET to find allot of what was missing. FROm the 60’s movies, the 70’s remakes, to the Start of the series. Most of you dont/didnt know that Dr. who was 40+ years old??
There are STILL over 300 episodes missing.
So that when you get the COMPILATION of Dr. Who, you will MISS over 3/4 of the series.

remember the ABOVE about Dr. Who. AND HOPE some NICE person, made a COPY on VHS so that you can watch that OLD show online.
ALSO, does Copyright extend to a COMPANY that threw their MAIN COPY AWAY??

ECA (profile) says:

Re: Re: vERY FUNNY..

Let me say it this way.
The recording companies have LOST more music then they OWN.
They use an OLD standard, for the time, be it the 30’s, 40’s, 60’s, When ever and NEVER redub the music/video to an UPGRADED format.
Be it wax, Nitrate, Vynal, TAPE..

they have jipped/stolen/ripped off musicians for years and Life times. There are artists, that LIVED under a contract that gave them NOTHING from sales.
there are music and videos Dieing in storage, that havnt been seen for 60 years..
And the Industry still has the copyright, which should have been released after 20 years.
You are still watching Bugs bunny from 1930’s, 1940’s.. you are watching Scooby doo, from the 70’s.. You are watching remakes of cartoons from the 60’s-80’s..
There is no innovation, advancement, no Improvement..
Japanese Anime Outputs MORE, NEW, advanced stuff then anything in the USA. There are tons more movies and shows, available then just the USA market.

And the net can be the testing ground for NEW shows.
Let the corps gather and form a GREAT site to watch all the movies, series, and General hospital.
Let them create a test site for NEW shows. You can monitor the numbers easier on the NET, then you can at the Nealson rating service.
Even anonymous watchers can be rated, you could have the Whole of the USA and the world watching the site.
But, they wont do that.

The Counterfeiter says:

Leaked ACTA documents indicate that encouraging the adoption of three-strikes – often euphemistically described as “graduated response” for the way Internet providers gradually send increasingly threatening warnings to subscribers – has been proposed for possible inclusion in the treaty.

So according to the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement if I get caught counterfeiting goods three times then I am kicked off of the internet?

I don’t need the internet to counterfeit goods, you know.

:) says:

Free Music Everywhere!

LMMS(Linux Multimedia Studio)

Youtube sample demonstrating what it can do.

There is tones of free sheet musics around the internet just waiting to be revived and put to good use.

I don’t even see how they are going to extract money from people who don’t have any.

CC 3.0 SA, GPL and Public Domain is all I want to see inside my house, maybe a CC SA-NC(Share a like, no commercial use permitted), I can still live with that. Aside from that all others will not see my money in any direct form(live, merchs and so on).

What I will do though is show everyone where to find legal free alternatives that are good enough.

The Anti-Mike (profile) says:

he highlights the high costs of implementing such proposals — without any evidence that they will actually get people to buy more music

Mike, this is where your logic (and Mr Geist’s as well) gets twisted. You are looking for an A to B relationship that simply may not exist. Not every assertion of a right automatically leads to some financial benefit.

Three strikes laws and other actions against illegal file sharing is to change the public mentality and perception of how you get music. They aren’t looking to suddenly see sales go whipping up as a result of a a violation complaint, they are looking to change the public’s idea of right and wrong on the subject. Any change in sales is something that comes over time, not something that suddenly appears moments later.

No matter the amount of furious bootstrapping that you do (linking to a story on your own site which points to an opinion piece you wrote for a newspaper), there is no proof for or against this sort of action. If anything, the short term shift in the Swedish market suggests that changes in public perception does in fact lead to more sales, but that is something you don’t seem to want to look more closely at.

So in the end, we are back to pile of opinion on opinion on opinion pieces with little real science or real numbers to back it up. Congrats!

:) says:

Re: Re:

It is working by the way.

I don’t buy music, movies or books from any artist or company anymore unless it has of course a license stating in writing what I want.

Copy, distribution and modification at my own discretion.

Jamendo, Magnatune, Locarecords and other CC 3.0 SA licensed services are popping up everywhere.

Open source initiatives that were null a few years back are starting to be noticed.

Yay! people will pay LoL

I think the teaching will be done by consumers this time around. Consumers will teach artists where their place really is 🙂

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

http://www.michaelgeist.ca/content/view/4731/135/

Moreover, the UK estimates are consistent with a 2006 Industry Canada commissioned study on the costs of Internet provider notification schemes. The study concluded that the cost of a single notification was $11.73 for larger Internet providers (more than 100,000 subscribers) and $32.73 for smaller Internet providers. Considering the sheer number of notifications – last summer Bell Canada acknowledged receiving 15,000 notifications each month – the costs quickly run into the millions of dollars.

The disparate impact between big and small Internet providers highlights another hidden cost of three-strikes systems – the negative effect on the competitive landscape for Internet services. The UK estimates that the costs on small Internet providers are so great that consideration should be given to exempting them entirely, since the additional burden would result in decreased competition. The same report identifies the disproportionate harm to wireless carriers, who would face massive capital costs and be placed at a competitive disadvantage.

http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/ippd-dppi.nsf/eng/ip01436.html

That’s a link to the Canadian government. Here’s my favourite link:

http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/ippd-dppi.nsf/eng/ip01088.html

The now infamous quote by Jack Valenti, president of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) summarizes Hollywood’s initial assessment of the VCR: “[The VCR] is to the American film producer and the American public as the Boston Strangler is to the woman alone.”

That’s on the Canadian government’s website. Have fun reading TAM.

The Anti-Mike (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Prohibition? Wow, that is a stretch and a half. We aren’t talking about anywhere near the same thing. Is there some discussion about stopping all production, sale, and distribution of movies and music I wasn’t aware of?

There are plenty of laws that are against come people’s wishes, from speed limits to drug laws, from shoplifting to pedophilia. Each of those groups has people who think that they do shouldn’t be against the law, and yet in each case it is against the law.

Yes, people speed, and people use drugs, and so on… but in the end, they do it knowing they risk fines, prison, or even significant risks to their health. Some people you cannot change, but most people tend to follow the law without reason.

So when it comes to twisted logic, I think your prohibition argument is pretty much right up there.

senshikaze (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

“Some people you cannot change, but most people tend to follow the law without reason.”

I for one don’t want to follow the law “without reason”

David Thoreu said it best in Civil Disobedience:
“Any fool can make a rule, and any fool will mind it.”

give me a reason why those things should be illegal. Some I agree with, some I don’t.

But I will never follow the law without reason.

The Anti-Mike (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

Mike ran two different “surveys” from the UK which came up with vastly different numbers. The Canadian numbers also vary greatly depending on the questions asked. There are a couple of things in play, such that file traders are often not the account holders (but their underage children), or that people just don’t want to admit they trade files. So it’s hard to tell.

When it comes to numbers, Mike has been pretty good about not working the Swedish numbers that showed after TPB issues and IPRED came along, suddenly there was a significant uptick in online music purchases in that country. That is potentially the smoking gun that would show that when the public no longer feels they can file share with impunity that they will change their habits.

Still waiting for a large Techdirt investigation into this.

RadialSkid says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

TAM:
“Mike has been pretty good about not working the Swedish numbers that showed after TPB issues and IPRED came along, suddenly there was a significant uptick in online music purchases in that country. That is potentially the smoking gun that would show that when the public no longer feels they can file share with impunity that they will change their habits.”

http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20091125/1018597087.shtml

Seriously, do you even read this site?

Nastybutler77 (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

It’s not really much of a strech at all, and the fact that you think so show’s how far off the mainstream your viewpoint is. When the majority of people (and don’t kid yourself, the upcoming generation overwhelmingly has no problem with IP “theft”) no longer wish to obey any law, the law will change to fit the new beliefs and attitudes. Not the other way around. Geez, I can’t believe I have to explain this simple point, or that someone would actually argue against it.

You can’t pass a law and change the way people feel about something. Since Prohibition is too much of a strech for you, how about this? If a law was passed that citizens could no longer drink after 10pm, do you think people would just stop drinking after 10? I’m sure bars and stores would stop selling, but who’s going to be sitting at home and put their beer down? The same people who would obey these silly anti-file sharing laws. A simple minded few.

All these laws will do it cause a backlash against the entertainment corporations. The only attitudes that will be shifted is a negative shift against the industry.

Richard (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Not every assertion of a right automatically leads to some financial benefit.

Three strikes laws and other actions against illegal file sharing is to change the public mentality and perception of how you get music. They aren’t looking to suddenly see sales go whipping up as a result of a a violation complaint, they are looking to change the public’s idea of right and wrong on the subject.
Why on earth would a major corporation get involved in changing public morals for its own sake. It would not be proper use of shareholder funds. This is the music industry not the Catholic Church.


Any change in sales is something that comes over time, not something that suddenly appears moments later.
Ah so it is about money after all – and you were lying earlier.

Not that I think they will have any luck in changing the public’s views of the morality of the situation. Especially since they are widely regarded as amongst the most immoral organisations on the planet. It’s an exercise in do as I say not as I do.

At best they will get sullen acceptance and maybe a short term sales increase before the sharing moves to more private modes of operation (encryption, sneakernet etc).

The Anti-Mike (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Richard, the point I was trying to make is that there is no direct “today” correlation between reduced file sharing and sales, it is something that happens over time. The concept is changing the public perception of right and wrong on the issue (some call it the entitlement mentality).

At best they will get sullen acceptance and maybe a short term sales increase before the sharing moves to more private modes of operation (encryption, sneakernet etc).

if it moved to sneakernet,I don’t think they would be concerned. It is incredibly hard with a hand to hand passing of information to create the same harm as high speed, world wide illegal file sharing. Sneakernet also requires more time and effort than most people are willing to put in, and thus, is less of an issue.

Moving to a more encrypted system has the same effect, cutting off those people who are marginal on the idea anyway, making it harder for the casual user to share, and as a result, cutting down file sharing. Few if any would claim that 100% of piracy can be stopped, I think the goals are more a case of shifting what the average consumer does on a given day. Shifting even 20 or 30% of the file sharers back to being paying consumers might actually create a tipping point on the whole idea.

reaperman0 says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Moving to an encrypted system is as simple as turning the option on in your torrent client of choice. It would have no effect on the ‘marginal’ users. Hell, the authors of the torrent software could start enabling it by default and nobody would even notice. Except the filters looking for infringing content that is…

Rasmus says:

Re: Re:

“If anything, the short term shift in the Swedish market suggests that changes in public perception does in fact lead to more sales, but that is something you don’t seem to want to look more closely at.”

Or it was caused by the fact that a large part of the population in Sweden actually had their interest rates on housing loans dropped by 70% at he same time. Thats a lot of money to spend on entertainment.

:) says:

Have a taste is free!

Houdini Roadshow – Snakepit (Rock)

Lyrics included.

All works licensed under CC 3.0 SA-NC

You can copy, distribute, advertise and play this album as long as you:

*
Give credit to the artist
*
Don’t use this album for commercial purposes
*
Distribute all derivative works under the same license

WHY WOULD I BUY ANYTHING FROM EVIL PEOPLE WHEN I GOT JAMENDO?

Blatant Coward (profile) says:

Wow

What’s really funny is when the industry bemoans the piracy and then gives no legal way to purchase. Case in point, I wanted to get the album “For those about to Rock” You have to buy it on those quaint little coasters. No one seems to be selling it as a download “Gimme now” version. This is done at AC/DC’s request, they want to keep the musical experience by selling them only in albums, like I wanted to buy. They threw my sale away.

I don’t want a coaster. Don’t need one, I have paper towels.

Apropos of nothing a friend of mine is backing up his hard drive, I’m gonna loan him a 1 TB external drive. If he forgets to erase it when finished, well no harm done.

One strike? Three strikes? Who cares, I got sneakernet.

Sam I Am says:

What’s happened to digital music is just the earliest warning to commerce. This is all about taking commercial control of the network in the lightest possible way.

Product and service will continue to go digital and world government will work in concert to make online behavior accountable, simple as that.

In an internet seminar here in NYC back in early December, I heard a visiting federal official suggest “iris scans or fingerprints linked to national id cards” as the means to gain network access in the decades ahead. Farfetched? Not in time. It’s even more farfetched to expect world government to acquiesce to an anarchic internet virtually useless for digital commerce and product distribution.

:) says:

Re: Re:

There are barriers to be lifted first:

– Overlay networks(or you can call them virtual private networks on top of the physical network).
– Virtual equipment.
– Loopholes in the law that will be inevitable as not everyone has eyes or fingers and this could be a significant number of people disfigured by 2 wars that left many disfigured and without limbs.
– Local area networks that are not connected through any commercial line.
– The security value of that equipment is under scrutiny as iris recognition can be bypassed with a 2D photo and finger print was bypassed with gum are people going to use glasses and gloves to protect their identities?

herodotus (profile) says:

“if it moved to sneakernet,I don’t think they would be concerned. It is incredibly hard with a hand to hand passing of information to create the same harm as high speed, world wide illegal file sharing.”

‘Home Taping is Killing Music’.

What was home taping if not the Sneakernet?

Admit it, these people will demand whatever they think they can get away with demanding.

The idea that they will stop worrying about one kind of infringing because they think they have ‘beaten’ another kind is rather hard to believe, given their history.

All it would take would be one prominent news story about the ‘reviving of the sneakernet’, perhaps festooned with some questionable statistics regarding estimated numbers of albums traded per month, for a whole bunch of lobbyists to demand a new, bigger tax on blank media.

RD says:

WRONG!

Mike, this is where your logic (and Mr Geist’s as well) gets twisted. You are looking for an A to B relationship that simply may not exist. Not every assertion of a right automatically leads to some financial benefit.”

Then why do it? Now you are being completely disingenous. Completely. You know damn well (because your corporate masters, who pay you to disagree with everyone told you so, and its also been in the new ad nauseum) that “piracy” is KILLING the industry. That is ALL we ever hear of the “big problem” that is facing movies and music. ALL. That is the ONLY reason put forth by YOUR VERY OWN MASTERS on the subject. If these proposals arent geared toward IMMEDIATELY changing that course by trying to eliminate “piracy”, then what is it for? Its not, and you are lying once again just to be contrary and find fault with an argument, and to defend your corporate butt-buddies with every breath out of your mouth.

“Three strikes laws and other actions against illegal file sharing is to change the public mentality and perception of how you get music. They aren’t looking to suddenly see sales go whipping up as a result of a a violation complaint, they are looking to change the public’s idea of right and wrong on the subject. Any change in sales is something that comes over time, not something that suddenly appears moments later.”

Listen sparky. EVERYONE knows (even the bought-and-paid-for politicians and media) that the music and movie industries DO NOT TAKE THE LONG VIEW, on anything. Ever. Its ALWAYS about what can we get RIGHT NOW. The ALWAYS oppose EVERY innovation and have to be dragged screaming and whining like children before they even START to adopt it. Reel-to-Reel. Cassette Tape. VHS/Beta. CD. DAT. MP3, lord KNOWS mp3, and even your shilling ass cant deny that. They spent 10 YEARS ignoring the mp3 market before finally, grudgingly, allowing SOME of their stuff to be offered through iTunes and other services, but only a small portion of their catalog, and with as many restrictions as possible.

“So in the end, we are back to pile of opinion on opinion on opinion pieces with little real science or real numbers to back it up. Congrats!”

Says the man who creates strawmen out of every argument, never debates a point directly when its raised and instead attacks either the person or some other side point and then crows truimphantly as if he just “got you.” Where are your stats that “piracy” is KILLING these industries? Where are your studies that stopping “piracy” would make people buy more music – ever? You have none, yet you see fit to level the same criticism at everyone that you yourself refuse to discuss.

Traitor Against Mankind.

Jimr (profile) says:

Right to work & defamation of character

As part of my job, IT related, I have to use the internet to do my job. If even accused I would lose my source of income. The three strikes base upon accusation would essentially deprive me of my right to earn an income in my field of training. So in my case just the accusation would be a massive defamation of my character resulting in real financial lose.

I would even suggest that any accusation that results in punishment is a defamation of your character (as it is an An attack on the good reputation) that has real injury associated with it.

anymouse (profile) says:

It's all about control of the ISP's

I’m not sure why nobody has brought this particular line of reasoning up yet (or if they did and I just missed it), but I think this is just the first step in a much larger long term plan. What plan is that you ask?

The consolidation of smaller independent ISP’s under larger corporate entities (which will be controlled and staffed at the highest level by **AA cronies and lobbiests), until eventually we have only 3-4 large global ‘choices’ left with a few smaller renegades (much like the cellular market today vs 15 years ago when there were multiple smaller companies competing).

Once the control of the ISP’s has been consolidated by the **AA, it will be much easier for them to control this new ‘broadcast internet tube thingy’ that they keep claiming is ‘killing their industry’. Just wait for things to start happening, here are my predictions:

1. When/If it passes, smaller ISP’s in those areas will start being bombarded with accusations of infringement on large sections of their customers.
2. They will be forced to ‘cut off’ those customers based on the new laws that were put in place.
3. Excessive costs of notification and enforcement of the 3rd notification, along with the shrinking revenue streams due to the loss of a large group of their customers will result in many smaller ISP’s going ‘bankrupt’, but right before they actually collapse and close, a large corporate ISP will come in and buy them for pennies on the dollar (since they were going to collapse anyway).
4. Consolidations will continue until the majority of the ISP market is controlled by 3-4 ‘competitors’ (the competitors will actually collude to price fix and gouge all customers appropriately, while confusing the masses with ads about ‘maps’, ‘apps’, ‘maximum potential speed’ or similar non issues that make it appear that there are differences).
5. Once the market is consolidated the **AA’s will be in a position to remove the various 3-strikes laws, claiming that they have realized the error of their ways, and that kicking people off the internet isn’t such a good idea after all (what they really mean is, ‘Now that we are getting all the revenue, we aren’t willing to give it up by kicking our paying customers offline, because that would be a really stupid idea’
6. Increase prices and decrease service levels, since the **AA’s will have an effective monopoly (via collusion and price fixing).
7. PROFIT, PROFIT, PROFIT

Yes, I may be a tinfoil hat wearing paranoid conspiracy theorist, but that doesn’t mean that I’m wrong, does it? Even a stopped watch is right twice a day…. unless it’s digital, then it’s never right because it doesn’t show the time when it’s dead…. damn all this new fangled technology stuff is messing up my analogies, how will we ever adapt to this new ‘tech’ stuff?

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