Can you rip your CDs to your computer?

3 01 2008

Can the music industry (RIAA) get any more greedy and stupid?  In the news, the RIAA is going after personal use, meaning they don’t want you to rip your own legally bought CDs to your computer or to put them on your MP3 player.  Here’s some excerpts from the article :

Now, in an unusual case in which an Arizona recipient of an RIAA letter has fought back in court rather than write a check to avoid hefty legal fees, the industry is taking its argument against music sharing one step further: In legal documents in its federal case against Jeffrey Howell, a Scottsdale, Ariz., man who kept a collection of about 2,000 music recordings on his personal computer, the industry maintains that it is illegal for someone who has legally purchased a CD to transfer that music into his computer.

The industry’s lawyer in the case, Ira Schwartz, argues in a brief filed earlier this month that the MP3 files Howell made on his computer from legally bought CDs are “unauthorized copies” of copyrighted recordings. …

At the Thomas trial in Minnesota, Sony BMG’s chief of litigation, Jennifer Pariser, testified that “when an individual makes a copy of a song for himself, I suppose we can say he stole a song.” Copying a song you bought is “a nice way of saying ‘steals just one copy,'” she said.

I suppose they want you to buy the CD AND buy the songs online for your MP3 player AND buy another copy for your cell phone ringtone (at $3 for 30 seconds!).  That’s greedy!  And they’re being really stupid because this is going to drive more fans away.  The RIAA points to file sharing as the only problem (and it is a problem, I know), but I know people who don’t buy music anymore because most of it is so “manufactured” and there’s few songs on a CD that are good.  There are even people who are buying only non-RIAA CDs now.

By their new standards, is the RIAA going to say it’s illegal to burn a CD from the songs you buy through iTunes or other online music services?  That wouldn’t surprise me, either.  The RIAA probably thinks it is invincible, that musicians need them to make a living, but it’s not necessary.  The only strength the RIAA has now is that they have somewhat of a monopoly on things because they control so much.  But if there was a widespread rebellion among artists, producers, engineers, distributors, radio stations, etc., then the system could be overthrown.  I’m thinking that would be a great thing.  I know it might make certain things more difficult at first, but a new, independent system could work without having a “government” of the music industry.

To answer the question of whether we can legally rip a CD we bought to our computer, it’s legal under “Fair Use” laws.  But the RIAA is trying to change that…

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One response

11 01 2008
Kri'

It’s not going to stop me from doing it; I just bought a car that can play MP3 CD’s so I can fit over 100 songs onto a single CD. This will keep me from having to carry individual CD’s around and compile them into much less space; how can I do this if I can’t put them on my PC? Re-purchase them via web-download?? I think not!

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