I've said it before and I'll say it again: "piracy" causes consumers to get excited about music and results in them buying more than they otherwise would have bought -- that's an observation I've made of the music buying habits of myself and others. I didn't notice it until I stopped buying RIAA-member products; then I realized I really wasn't interested in it anywhere near as much as I used to be.
The only language that they speak is money, so speak in their language. Too bad they don't speak it fluently, or else they would have noticed that their profits went up when piracy went up, and only after they announced that they have piracy "under control" did their profits fall.
How do you speak their language? Pay for music that doesn't benefit the RIAA. Never pay for music that does benefit the RIAA. Not only do you stop supporting them, but it's a slap in their face when you show that you are, in fact, willing to pay for music when you're not being treated like a criminal. It's a slap in their face when non-RIAA record companies make more money.
Don't support the RIAA Inquisition. Do not pay money to jerks that hate their customers.
You can still listen to the music that you already like, even though it's sold by RIAA members. Borrow the CD from the library and your friends. Buy or download non-RIAA versions, such as live recordings and covers. Listen to the radio, Pandora, last.fm, satellite radio, youtubed videos, free online versions (such as found at Rhapsody, Napster, etc)...there's a plethora of other ways to hear what you like without paying extortionary rates for DRM-encrusted CDs. At most, you'd be contributing minimally (ads on Pandora, last.fm, Rhapsody, and Napster probably benefit the RIAA a little bit; small portions of money from satellite radio go to record companies on both sides of the RIAA divide; and libraries do pay for CDs).
You can also buy used CDs, and sell CDs that you're done with. Think supply and demand...and think of how little money you're putting into the system at all, that way.
Music is kind of like food, though: Once you get used to organic vegan health food (ick!), you can't stomach greasy mass-produced stuff anymore. Well, I still like greasy mass-produced food, but I can't tolerate Metallica or Faith Hill. Now while I eat a cheeseburger, I listen to State Of Corruption or John Prine.
http://www.riaaradar.com -- Look up a CD you want to buy and see if it's RIAA-affiliated
http://www.emusic.com -- Commercial music from non-RIAA labels, cheap, in DRM-free MP3s
http://garageband.com -- Non-RIAA music, with some free downloads
http://www.stage.fm -- Non-RIAA music, with some free downloads
http://cdbaby.com -- Non-RIAA music for sale
http://payplay.fm -- Non-RIAA music for sale as DRM-free MP3s
I wish I could find the press releases that show the correlation that I've observed where piracy results in profit for the supposed victims. I once posted a comment about it but I can't find it now.