The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) has published music piracy’s “10 inconvenient truths“. Jumping on about three or four bandwagons at the same time must be taxing for the good folks at the IFPI, but I digress.
The list is (with some fisking added):
“1. Pirate Bay, one of the flagships of the anti-copyright movement, makes thousands of euros from advertising on its site, while maintaining its anti-establishment “free music” rhetoric.”
Not true, PirateBay does not promote free music, they promote self-serving piracy. The IFPI should understand that people are sophisticated enough to know that pirates are selfish, back-stabbing drunkards who say “argh” a lot. We’ve all seen Pirates of the Caribbean!
“2. Allofmp3.com, the well-known Russian website, has not been licensed by a single IFPI member, has been disowned by right holder groups worldwide and is facing criminal proceedings in Russia.”
In other breaking news, water is wet and snow is cold…
“ 3. Organised criminal gangs and even terrorist groups use the sale of counterfeit CDs to raise revenue and launder money.”
From P2P, to dodgy Russian sites, to organised crime and terrorism in three steps. That must be some sort of record. Remember kids, when you download songs, you assist Osama Bin Laden.
“ 4. Illegal file-sharers don’t care whether the copyright infringing work they distribute is from a major or independent label.”
True most of the times, although in my experience music fans are sophisticated enough to support struggling bands they like.
“ 5. Reduced revenues for record companies mean less money available to take a risk on “underground” artists and more inclination to invest in “bankers” like American Idol stars.”
The music industry has never really been aware of irony, but it does strike me particularly lovely that here it complains about its own bias and emphasis on easy-money, while asking for sympathy.
“ 6. ISPs often advertise music as a benefit of signing up to their service, but facilitate the illegal swapping on copyright infringing music on a grand scale.”
This one sticks out in this list. It is not a dig directed against P2P and file-sharers, but it’s part of an ongoing intermediary liability war. Pangloss should have something to say about that.
“7. The anti-copyright movement does not create jobs, exports, tax revenues and economic growth – it largely consists of people pontificating on a commercial world about which they know little.”
If all your efforts to stop file-sharing fail (the pleas from artists, the angry lawsuits, the DRM), then revert to a level of right-wing rhetoric that would fit quite well in Fox News. Only The Industry creates jobs, all of you pinko-commie hippies do not generate anything for the economy. And you’re stupid.
“8. Piracy is not caused by poverty. Professor Zhang of Nanjing University found the Chinese citizens who bought pirate products were mainly middle or higher income earners.”
Look at the nice straw man being erected. See it knocked down. This is not a logical fallacy for nothing.
“9. Most people know it is wrong to file-share copyright infringing material but won’t stop till the law makes them, according to a recent study by the Australian anti-piracy group MIPI.”
So, we’ll just sue you into oblivion until you comply! We have lawyers and we’re not afraid to use them!
“10. P2P networks are not hotbeds for discovering new music. It is popular music that is illegally file-shared most frequently.”
Could it be because new music is *gasp* often shared for free?
All in all, a poor showing for the IFPI, even below their stridently inadequate standards.