Media Company Thieves Coming Back For More

In – entertainment – Tax on MP3 players may return, David Basskin, director of the Canadian Private Copying Collective, is quoted as saying:

“When you have bought a CD, you don’t own the music – you own the copy of the music that you’ve purchased,” he says. “You’re not buying the rights to make copies.”

“People are going to do private copying, and the levy legitimizes it and provides compensation to the people who created the music. It’s pretty hard to say why that’s not fair,”

No its bloody well not hard to see at all!!!

{Warning:obscenities coming}

It’s fucking obvious that it’s not fair because the media levy is charged to people who have no interest in his fucking music and no intent to copy it, and there is absolutely no fucking way to justify stealing a fee from me for every CD I buy to back-up my own data and store my own photographs. Pardon the obscenity, but I could be on the verge of something worse (see below).

Michael Geist (Canada research chair of Internet and e-commerce law at the University of Ottawa) points out that “Consumers have an expectation that they ought to be able to listen to music they purchase on the device of their choice.” Of course he is right, and I hope that the expected right is in fact provided by the fair use provisions in our copyright law, but by emphasizing this aspect I think he actually misses the most important point which is that the vendors know what usage patterns to expect and have a perfect opportunity to charge accordingly when they sell their products – and no matter when they charge, the only appropriate person to charge is the purchaser who will have control over whether or not copying occurs. It is grossly inappropriate to extract such compensation from others who had no part in the music purchase transaction nor any intent to copy and use the product.

The fact that I get so incensed over this small charge is I believe a sign of why its implementation is such a grievous mistake. When the law is abused so flagrantly it loses respect, and an injustice which can goad a law abiding senior citizen like me into fantasies of vigilante sabotage may well prompt the real thing from others more easily inflamed – and I wouldn’t blame them!

What is actually saddest about this is that I wouldn’t mind paying an honest tax to subsidize the arts – including artists in whose work I have no personal interest. But I’ll be damned if I’ll keep listening passively to more of these pious homilies about theft from people who are themselves unabashed thieves of the worst kind.

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