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January 22, 2007


Mark in Hellstinki

I heard about this last week, but did not realize it encompassed streaming audio... I thought it only concerned podcasts (ie saveable files).

These crooks need to be stopped! (The politicians with the RIAA in their back pockets, I mean).


I knew it was too good to last. I downloaded a bunch of podcasts covering artists' career retrospectives as a way to avoid paying for cds. So I'm guilty of using podcasts for this purpose. The RIAA may be a lot of things, but... i downloaded a podcast to avoid buying a cd... so did others...

Yet Another User



Thanks User, I'm sure you comment here will be duly entered into the briefs for the RIAA.

Would anyone else like to confess things that could help shut down WFMU's streams? Ken and Andy making snuff films with Hobos, for instance. . .


Sorry if 'user' decides to use broadcasts for other than their intended purposes, but just because merchandise is left on the counter doesn't make the seller directly responsible in helping the thief steal it.

Besides, the argument remains intact: the vast majority of piracy comes from the source, ripped and distributed from the CD, and distributed on P2P services. Its harder to do what the RIAA thinks is being done with streams, than for one lone to dude to distribute it from one CD. They're just picking on any one they can, and the government is going along because making laws that control things make them happy.

J. Neas

This seems like legislation that's designed to try and undermine the famous Betamax case (Click here to read about it.) I know the music/movie industry has smarted ever since that decision was handed down. That decision said as long as something has substantial non-infringing use (which, obviously, streaming, podcasting, etc. do), then it's protected as fair use. Just 'cos some people use it in ways that is illegal, that doesn't cut it. Same with this - they shouldn't be able to force people to use proprietary, awkard formats just to try and prevent 'piracy.' So it's a little easier to copy things now than it was when you had to sit and tape things off the radio or off of tv with a VHS. Same idea. Same protection.

Vic Perry

Say it again: recording off the radio for your own use is PROTECTED FAIR USE. I used to do it when I was a child in the 70's and I do it now, and I'm glad to see that the "Betamax" decision was recently upheld again.

Hey "User," some people check out books from the library in order not to have to purchase them, I suppose that should be illegal too.

Fight this, & don't despair - this bogus legislation has powerful foes as well as powerful friends.


I read newspapers in Cafes to avoid buying them.

By the way, I recently discovered that most streams (including WFMU's own) sound crappy on really good headphones. Of course, the solution is to listen to them on cheap audio equipment. So yeah, if you are willing to put some work in it and deal with inferior audio quality, you can grab everything from streams, but it is not CD or LP quality. Very much like cassettes in the good old days. (I still have several hours of 80s John Peel on various tapes...)


Speaking of the problem with high fidelity, there was a fascinating article in the NY Times today about the crisis that High Def has brought to the porn industry.

Turns out that scopophilia has its limits:

“The biggest problem is razor burn,” said Stormy Daniels, an actress, writer and director.


I feel horrible when someone drives by my apartment with their car stereo on loud enough for me to hear. The music I'm hearing is illegal. I've tried plugging my ears with my fingers yelling, "NAH! NAH! NAH!", in hopes to drowning out the illicit sounds but some still manage to seep into my ears.

I'm currently sound-proofing my windows so I don't break the law, but I shouldn't have to do this. The RIAA should get off their butts and regulate the volume of car stereos so the music played on them is only available to the purchaser of said music. I'm not sure how they can keep the music played inside the car from the passengers, but I'm sure the wizards at the RIAA will come up with something.

Hear It Wow

Vic makes a good point. I don't know if this is true for everyone, but the streams from my show at WMFO go out at far less than CD quality, so if there's high-quality MP3s of songs floating around out there, they aren't coming from us.

Even our podcasts are in a lower-quality format. Have any of the supporters of this bill even bothered to consider that?


It's s. not 265.


Thanks, Liz! I emailed Boxer & Feinstein, and I'm mailing them paper copies as well.

I encourage everyone to email their senators as well.

KDVS radio

Liz B.

Thanks for catching those little glitches, Paul and Spacehoof. Bill # and link are now fixed. Guess this thing got me all riled up and dyslexic.


so does this mean i can't split the signal to my computer speakers and record out to a cassete? or a real time cd burner? no. with open source action, there's nothing that can't be captured with free software. they started selling tape recorders, and that was that. they didn't have to, but they did. too late. it will be like the war on drugs. probably only black people will be targeted . let me see that Ipod. do you have a receipt for all of this music?


There are so many problems with this bill. For example, who decides what DRM scheme will be used? DiFi doesn't seem to be aware that DRM systems are highly proprietary and vendor specific.

The fact that Apple won't license their DRM would seem to indicate that radio stations would have to select a Microsoft DRM solution. Does that mean Perform will effectively make Internet radio Windows-only?!

Steve PMX

If you anagram the name Diane Feinstein, you can really see her true colors....


I don't know what "NINNIES" are but something tells me I don't want to know. That bitch is lame.


wow...i think you are all fooling everybody.


This whole thing is insane. They're (the RIAA) not really concerned totally with the whole piracy thing you know. They're looking for political power so they can circumvent groups like the PMRC and such. They want total monopolistic control of everything. I mean, your average internet stream is quite low bitrate. Around 56k. Who's going to record that?? And hello, internet webcasting, like with shoutcast and others, are mainly normal citizens who have a microphone plugged into their soundcard, and are broadcasting just for the fun of it. An interesting read i found. Called "Help save internet radio". ;-)

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