Out With The Old… In With The Older At The RIAA
from the facepalm dept
There were rumors about this last week, but now it’s been confirmed that RIAA CEO Mitch Bainwol has left to head up the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers. I’m sort of curious what his job qualifications were?
Mitch: “Rather than help a legacy industry adapt to changing times, I focused on a self-destructive legal campaign against fans, got Congress to pass bad laws that made things worse, made the companies I represent more hated than before (and we already started super low!) and, on top of all that, failed to do anything to help the record labels improve their bottom lines.”
Detroit: “Wow, you sound like our kind of guy… Sign here!”
Honestly, Bainwol’s biggest accomplishment may have been making his predecessor, Hilary Rosen, look insightful and progressive in her views on the recording industry.
So, with Bainwol out, did the RIAA find someone who actually is willing to help the RIAA and the record labels adapt to these changing times a decade and a half too late? Did it hire someone who won’t fall for the same old traps again, but who might actually embrace the modern world in a way that helps the record labels earn more money?
Nope. It just promoted President Cary Sherman, who has probably been a lot more public and vocal than Bainwol anyway. Oh, and they also promoted Mitch Glazier to take on more responsibilities as well. If you want any more evidence as to just how anti-artist the RIAA is, all you have to do is look at Glazier’s most famous moment, allegedly sneaking in a few words into an unrelated bill to take away the ability of musicians to take back their copyrights from record labels, when he was a nobody Congressional staffer. A few months later, he was pulling down a half million dollar salary from the RIAA. Convenient. This created such a scandal among musicians that it’s one of the few major policy issues in which Congress eventually rolled back his changes. I don’t see how the RIAA presents itself as “pro-artist,” when this is the guy they have as second in charge.
As for Sherman, not only is he one of the highest paid lobbyists out there (making even more than Bainwol), but among his greatest hits are his desire to roll back the DMCA’s safe harbors (the one good part of the DMCA), his explanation for why suing college kids is good for business and his lovely attempts to get federal financial aid pulled from universities that don’t act as copyright cops.
This is not how you drag the recording industry into this century. It’s how you drag it down.