Here's a little New Year's cheer for all of you out there: the Recording Industry Association of America is going after citizens who copy their music CDs to their personal computers:
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.
The RIAA has apparently lost its collective mind.
This isn't an isolated incident, either. An RIAA spokesman said that the industry will continue to prosecute folks who copy their CDs to their computers.
I suspect nearly all of you reading this have done exactly that.
Bad News: Rupert Murdock has made a bid for the Wall Street Journal. The Journal has some of the better news, business and technology sections printed anywhere. It comes under fire a lot because the opinion pieces are mostly written by wackadoos, but if you skip that section, it is one of the best papers out there. Murdock's bid was around 65% more than the market value of late. Like most crazy Republicans his solution to good reporting is to throw money at it, until he can ruin it in person. It will be a terrible day for journalism if newscorp takes this over and we have another Fox news rag.