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Mitch Bainwol To Succeed Hilary Rosen As RIAA Head 480

bmarklein writes "The RIAA has announced that it has named Mitch Bainwol, former chief of staff to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, as chairman & CEO. He replaces Hilary Rosen, who left earlier this month. This confirms the speculation that the RIAA would appoint a well-connected Republican (Rosen was a Democrat)." Several readers have submitted links to CNET's coverage as well. Update: 07/29 12:30 GMT by J : Lobbyists wield incredible power nowadays, and Slate's report on why was enlightening. Here's part 1 and part 2. Includes lyrics to the rap recorded for Rosen's going-away party by some of the most powerful people in the world: "Who wants the job of Hilary Rosen? / How 'bout the dream team of Bono and Tauzin?"
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Mitch Bainwol To Succeed Hilary Rosen As RIAA Head

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  • Hey (Score:5, Funny)

    by Surak ( 18578 ) * <surak.mailblocks@com> on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:09AM (#6556416) Homepage Journal
    U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist

    Is this a Frist Psot?
    • Re:Hey (Score:2, Redundant)

      by Pac ( 9516 )
      You're certain to go down pretty fast, but that was the first funny (and almost on topic) first post I've seem in eons. Nice "quick thinking" skills too. :))
      • Re:Hey (Score:4, Informative)

        by commodoresloat ( 172735 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @04:39AM (#6557395)
        I'm too lazy to find it, but my favorite first post was someone who posted to the topic "What would happen if 99% of computers on the internet were destroyed?" The first poster wrote "Easy... that's 99% fewer computers to beat me to the first post!" It was funny, on topic, and it was the first post. But it still got modded troll....
  • Walking the walk (Score:3, Insightful)

    by swordgeek ( 112599 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:12AM (#6556433) Journal
    Well, being a republican at least means that you folks in the US are less likely to have to foot the bill for his jackboots.
  • Maybe he can get their website situation straightened out. ;-p /me sits back and waits for people to start making fun of his name.....
  • by BWJones ( 18351 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:13AM (#6556439) Homepage Journal
    This confirms the speculation that the RIAA would appoint a well-connected Republican (Rosen was a Democrat)."

    Well, I suppose from this wording there will not be any political flame wars generated from this.... :-)

  • Former? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by momerath2003 ( 606823 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:13AM (#6556445) Journal
    Former Chief of Staff? Why did Bainwol get fired from / leave his previous position?
    • Re:Former? (Score:5, Funny)

      by Waffle Iron ( 339739 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:39AM (#6556604)
      Why did Bainwol get fired from / leave his previous position?

      He was just carried along by the angular momentum of the congressional/lobbyist revolving door.

    • Re:Former? (Score:2, Informative)

      by Alton_Brown ( 577453 )
      To the best of my knowledge, he left to go to the more profitable private sector. He was chief of staff for Frist for a short period of time before being chosen as executive director of the National Republican Senatorial Campaign. Later he served as chief of staff for the Republican National Committee. With his experience, contacts and an MBA he saw an opportunity to form his own consulting firm, the Bainwol Group. From there he took the RIAA job. I can almost guarantee you he never made anything close
    • Re:Former? (Score:3, Funny)

      by darnok ( 650458 )
      "I'll just confirm that with Chief of Staff BAINWOL"

      "Look out, here comes BAINWOL"

      I'll hazard a guess that having all your underlings laugh whenever they hear your name would tend to undermine your authority somewhat...

      Is this a real name, or something made up? He's not so much an enigma as an abbreviation:
      Wo rd
  • by johnny0101 ( 617627 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:14AM (#6556449) Journal
    This RIAA appt. is blatant politicking. I bet if ;) the democrats regain control, they will replace Bainwol with a Rosen clone. Sigh... I am a Republican but on this issue they are pissing me off...
    • by Scarblac ( 122480 ) <> on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @04:38AM (#6557389) Homepage

      Sigh... I am a Republican but on this issue they are pissing me off...

      Funny how Americans say "I am a Republican" while a Dutchman would say "I voted VVD last election"... Did you get some sort of label when you were born? :-)

      Seriously, it seems like people in the US pretty much always vote what they always voted, simply because that's the camp they feel they belong to... Nothing's ever going to change that way.

  • Tattoo (Score:5, Funny)

    by Ryan Stortz ( 598060 ) <ryan0rz AT gmail DOT com> on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:14AM (#6556452)
    Damn, now I need to get that "Death to Hillary" tattoo removed.
  • So... (Score:5, Funny)

    by zifty ( 692892 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:15AM (#6556460)
    We're replacing a liberal die-hard conservative with a republican die-hard conservative to head a company whose conservatism rivals Dubbya's lack of intelligence.

    I think I'll have a good cry.

    • You could always, you know, not patronize the RIAA. It won't stop them from writing anti-consumer laws, but at least then you'd no longer BE a consumer. (to them)
    • Conservative? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by poptones ( 653660 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:55AM (#6556683) Journal
      I don't get it - how are either of these conservative? We have yet to see how Hillary the latter will rule (although indications are [] he'll be as radically corporatist as Rosen), but Hillary the former was quite obviously a radical liberal. The only difference between Rosen and Al Sharpton is the group to which they would like to give special priviledges.

      Don't forget Frist is from TN, the center of the country music industry - probably the closest you can get to Hollywood without actually going to Hollywood. And he has plenty of pull of his own [].

      I'm rather sick of these radical modern day liberals (as opposed to old school liberals, who actually believed in liberty) being called "conservatives." These modern day robber barrons are not conservators of anything except greed. I have in mind a much appropriate word [] to describe them...

      • These modern day robber barrons are not conservators of anything except greed.

        Congratulations, you just figured out what the rest of mean when we say 'conservative'. You're a little late, but welcome to the party anyways.

  • Bad thing (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hamtux6 ( 572649 ) <{moc.liamg} {ta} {retsgnagome}> on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:15AM (#6556461)
    It's possible this may be modded down, but...

    You know this is a bad thing. He's a right-wing Republican; the GOP is pro-rich, pro-big corporations, and pro-personal interest.

    Expect even more tyranny from the RIAA.

    I shudder at this prospect... not that the old person was good, though...

    • Re:Bad thing (Score:3, Insightful)

      by greysky ( 136732 )
      Both parties are pro-rich. Otherwise, Lieberman wouldn't be in the pocket of Arthur Anderson, Daschle wouldn't be in the pocket of the airline industry, etc.

      Personally, I'm not going to let who the RIAA appoints as their CEO dictate who I vote for in '04.
    • Re:Bad thing (Score:5, Insightful)

      by kaltkalt ( 620110 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:32AM (#6556564)
      No, this issue is not about republican/democrat rich/poor. It is about paying off congresspeople to act on an issue that "the american people" do not care about. Well, to that extent it is about money, but only the RIAA's money. Ever notice how every evil copyright bill that gets passed is sponsored by one republican and one democrat? I explained why this is on another post on another thread, and I'm too lazy to go find it (but of course it was +5 insightful hehe). Fucking over the american media consumer, much like getting rid of kiddie porn, is an issue with complete bi-partisan support. It could be worse - both parties could be trying to out-do each other and show who is "really" tougher on IP pirate-theives.
    • Re:Bad thing (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Grieveq ( 589084 )
      "He's a right-wing Republican; the GOP is pro-rich, pro-big corporations, and pro-personal interest."

      I'm guessing before today's story, you've never heard of this guy. I haven't either so don't feel bad. Sure we all know Frist, but he is hardly a galvinizing conservative icon.

      Of course...your second line shows your true colors. Pro-rich, pro-big corporations, blah blah. Same 'ole line from the liberals. Who paints who with broad brush strokes?

      Maybe you should give him a chance, before damning him. A
  • Riiiiight... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bersl2 ( 689221 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:16AM (#6556469) Journal
    "What could be more rewarding than helping to promote two great American traditions: music and property rights?" Bainwol said in a statement.

    Who said property rights was a great American tradition? And rewarding for whom? Certainly not for us.
    • "What could be more rewarding than helping to promote two great American traditions: music and property rights?" Bainwol said in a statement.

      The way he starts his RIAA job is atleast up to the normal RIAA standards; spreading BS about "property rights" as if property has anything to do with copyright.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:42AM (#6556613)
      is you kidding?

      property rights almost DEFINE America!

      But of course I wonder what the hell does that have to do with Copyrights and music.. copyright takes the concept of property right and flips it upside down.

      I can just imagine if the RIAA was around in the early days of America:

      RIAA exec: Hi there Farmer Joe, I'd like to talk to you about potential copyright infringements, specifically your Friday-night get-togethers where you sing unlicensed performances of Little Brown Jug.

      Farmer: Git off mah property, monkey-suit boy! I bought that there sheet music fair an' square!

      RIAA exec: I'm sorry, but I'm afraid you only purchased the rights to perform it in the presence of yourself and one optional family member. Inviting the neighborhood over to "sing along" constitutes an infringment of the our rights.

      Farmer: What the hell are you talkin' about! I BOUGHT that there sheet music, that there sheet music is mine, same as the door you're a-standin' in, and the gun I'm a-gettin right now to blast a hole in your flabby gut.

      RIAA exec: Now now Farmer Joe, that's not how copyrights work, the rights to perform the song still belong to us. Now, we can settle this matter if you pay us $15,000, and we promise not to take away your house.

      Farmer: You're an ijit. *BLAM* *BLAM*
    • Who said property rights was a great American tradition?

      Who said property rights aren't a great American tradition?

      It's sort of the basis of large chunks of the Constitution.
    • Re:Riiiiight... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Dr. Bent ( 533421 ) <> on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @01:51AM (#6556902) Homepage
      Who said property rights was a great American tradition?

      Oh nobody...just the FIFTH AMENDMENT!

      "No person deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law"

      The original vision the founders had for property rights (including the original 14+14 copyright), is what made the American middle class possible. So they're very rewarding, for you and everyone else. If you don't have personal property rights, you have no incentive to work because the fruits of your labor can be taken from you at the whim of the government.

      Now music...that's a whole other story...
      • Re:Riiiiight... (Score:3, Insightful)

        by BrainInAJar ( 584756 )
        Canada has no constitutional right to property.

        We almost did, but then we punted the conservatives out, and Treudeau took great pains to 1) ensure that we don't become an oligarchy (by not entrenching property rights), and 2) piss off the American president at the time (just for sh**s and giggles)
  • by irving47 ( 73147 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:16AM (#6556472) Homepage
    He hasn't even DONE anything yet.

    Hit me.
  • by jeffkjo1 ( 663413 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:17AM (#6556473) Homepage
    Bainwol said in a statement. "What could be more rewarding than helping to promote two great American traditions: music and property rights?"

    Damnit... And all along I thought it was baseball and barbeques.
  • by supz ( 77173 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:18AM (#6556482) Homepage
    I'm not a member or supporter of either major political party, but now I guess I should vote democrat, during this upcoming presidential election. That way maybe partisan politics will work to a benefit, and a democrat president will shoot down whatever laws the RIAA lobbyists try to create.

    (Now that I mentioned politics, I'm readying for flame)
    • no flames, but the DCMA was signed into law under Clinton. The only thing voting democrat will do in the next election is get Bainwol replaced with a democrat. Both parties like money... corporations are happy to give them truckloads of it in return for special attention
    • by Wellspring ( 111524 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @01:18AM (#6556773)
      A Democrat signed the DMCA. Hilary Rosen was a democrat. Both parties actually agree on alot... of course we don't hear that in the news because the stuff that there is consensus on isn't newsworthy. On this stuff there's mostly apathy, salted with consensus.

      The reality is that so far I haven't seen a very convincing defense of music piracy. That isn't to say I wouldn't be receptive to one (I am) but most of them boil down to a general denial of property rights or good reasons why the artist/label/retailer would benefit if they decided to allow copying. If I haven't heard a satisfactory defense (and I'm looking) it's no surprise that people with more important things to worry about haven't, either.

      Fair use provisions in copyright law, shorter lifetimes for copyrights, etc. are all very noble, and well-advocated. But that's different from justifying the sharing of music recordings, when the copyright holder doesn't want this. The tactics used by the RIAA are objectionable-- but again that's a question of means not ends.

      So ultimately, lawmakers who have much bigger things to worry about (like war and the economy) see the following facts:

      1. The internet allows people to easily record and trade music.
      2. Nearly everyone is doing this, therefore getting music for free.
      3. The trade group representing the copyright holders for this music are up in arms.
      4. Some computer advocates object to certain technical provisions in the existing legislation, like fair use clarifications.
      5. Large numbers of people want music trading to be legal.

      To be honest, I may not like the RIAA, but I can see the problem. Unless there is a good reason why a copyright holder doesn't have to the right to limit copying of his work (hence copyright), then I might limit some of the more odious enforcement provisions, but I can't see why they shouldn't be allowed to protect their rights.

      Again, I'm receptive to such an argument. I do think that we're foolishly crushing fair use rights. I also think that copyrights (and while we're at it, patents) should be returned to their founding-father era lifespans. And criminalizing a good percentage of the public is a little silly, too. But that isn't the same as removing copyrights entirely.

      The music industry (and especially artists) would greatly benefit from circulating free but low-bitrate versions of their music to drive CD and concert sales-- I think that they're shooting their profits in the foot by not embracing the technology (they're already streaming low-bitrate audio wirelessly anyway, aren't they?-- and to great effect). But they have the right to shoot their profits in the foot if that's what they want to do.

      Instead of modding me down, post a reply telling me why forcing a copyright holder to allow free sharing of his work is good public policy. I want to believe, I just haven't heard a satisfactory argument yet.
      • Nitpick. (Score:4, Interesting)

        by autechre ( 121980 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @01:47AM (#6556884) Homepage
        The copyright holder, in the case of musical compositions, is not usually making decisions about "his work", but someone else's. The artist almost never has the rights to their own work.

        This can be important. Various artists, some big name (I believe the Smashing Pumpkins were one) were far more ready to embrace music on the Internet than the copyright holders, but of course, the artists couldn't really do anything about it as they were under contract to the label.

        Is it their fault for signing to a major? Technically yes, but it's hard to blame them, even for me. It's nice to see someone like the Yeah Yeah Yeahs get mainstream radio play, but it doesn't happen very often. If you want the big audiences, you sign to the big labels, and lose your rights.

        I think that the limits on copyright should be much shorter than they currently are, but I think that within those limits, people should be free to do what they want with their work. It's a shame it's often not up to the artists, but I don't think we can rightly change that with legislation.

        • Re:Nitpick. (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Ptahian ( 113302 )
          You are on the right track! (other than the end where you talk about fixing things with legislation -).

          First you rightly see that the artists are not part of the current market for 'tunes'. The RIAA sees the artist much like Ford sees a lug-nut (important, but easily replaced by any number of near identical lug-nuts).

          Secondly, you are correct that the copyright holders should be allowed to do what they want with their content. Again, the thought of forcing a copyright holder to do something in particula
      • by MourningBlade ( 182180 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @03:00AM (#6557113) Homepage

        The reality is that so far I haven't seen a very convincing defense of music piracy.

        I'm not going to take a stab at this, but I'd like to hear what you think about a few points. Who knows, maybe it'll clear up the debate a little bit.

        Let's say that distribution of pro-abortion material was deemed offensive in your district. Further, it was deemed obscene. Now let's say that people really do feel that way, and it's not just an attempt to squelch free speech.

        If you were to distribute informational pamphlets that discussed abortion in a positive light, you would be committing an illegal act. Furthermore, you would be distributing (or attempting to distribute) these pamphlets to people who truly found them offensive.

        Would you be right in doing it, even if it's illegal?

        Sorry that I used "abortion" but I'm in the buckle of the bible belt, and we run into those questions down here.

        How does this relate to "music piracy"? Because it serves to illustrate several assumptions:

        • That the onus is upon you to comply with restrictions of speech.
        • That restrictions can be made upon that speech just because people consider it to be "right." (or wrong)

        The trick is how copyright works. Consider for a moment what copyright means. It is not property. It can be bought and sold, but it is not quite property. It is a government granted, sanctioned, and enforced monopoly granted for a limited time. It is literally taking out phrases, ideas, and images from our freedom of speech.

        Is that wrong? Well, I'd be hard pressed to say that was wrong, because we do have the sense that someone who makes something owns it, whether draftsman or craftsman. But at the same time, for freedom of speech to exist we shouldn't have to worry so much about what we say.

        Also, consider what freedom of speech is: it's a description of a lack of controls upon an interaction. Copyright is intrinsically an interaction between two people when its value is assessed.

        A work of art can be enjoyed solely by its creator without copyright coming in to play, much as land can be enjoyed only by its owner without needing someone else to desire that land.

        So, copyright is a restriction upon speech and a restriction upon interaction, and it is granted for a limited time.

        If that is true --- that copyright is a restriction, not a restriction in the sense of "two people cannot both own 100% of something" like land or material items, but a restriction in the sense that "I can own what you say" --- then perhaps the onus is not upon we the public to justify our use of something so much as it is upon the copyright holder to justify our lack of "permission" to use it.

        Why do I mention this? You ask for a justification for "piracy." I think that's a bit turned around on its head.

        When copyright was set out in America (note that I can only speak for America), most of the argument boiled down to "alright, we'll put up with this abomination, but only for a short while, and only if it benefits us" because copyright was not viewed as a "right."

        Maybe it should be. I don't know. But regardless, if you're going to argue about the current copyright system, you need to consider upon whom the responsibility for justification is. Much of the law comes from discovering upon whom obligation for justification lies.

        Most of the good arguments I've heard against music trading is that it dilutes the value of their property[1]. Does that hold up? Well, that's an argument for the statisticians.

        These are just some things to consider. I'd like to hear anything you have to say concerning the subject. Please note that I am not "for" music piracy. Not really sure how I feel about it. I just would like to see a clearer discussion.

        [1] - Please don't make the mistake of saying "it's bad because it's against the law." I've heard that a few times, and it's useless because when you're talking about right and wrong it makes little sense to discuss the factuality of the law. The premise behind the law, sure. But not the factuality.

      • by femto ( 459605 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @03:40AM (#6557205) Homepage
        It's not about music. It's about the bigger picture.

        The world is moving towards an era of exceedingly low barriers to manufacturing and distribution. (See previous story on peer-to-peer manufacturing [].) Incumbents are selfishly seeking to impose artificial barriers, such as claiming property rights over ideas and information.

        We will have an opportunity to abolish resource shortages and largely solve material needs. The alternative is people dying from disease and starvation due to artificial barriers, such as intellectual 'property rights', preventing them from receiving things such as drugs and food. These things will be affordable if artificial barriers, such as intellectual property', are removed. (It is is okay to charge competitive prices for materials, labour and other scarce resources.) Okay you may argue R&D needs to be recouped, but as simulations become more accurate R&D costs will plummet, rendering such arguments moot.

    • by heli0 ( 659560 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @01:19AM (#6556775)
      "and a democrat president will shoot down whatever laws the RIAA lobbyists try to create."

      I hate to disappoint you but Hollywood(MPAA/RIAA) is one of the primary contributors to the Democratic party, the other two being trial lawyers and labor unions. Have you already forgot who signed the DMCA into law?
  • Email? (Score:2, Funny)

    by wmspringer ( 569211 )
    So, is everyone going to email him and congratulate him on his new job? I'm sure he'd love to hear what slashdotters think he should do first..
  • by HermanAB ( 661181 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:21AM (#6556501)

    Well, in the time honoured tradition, repressed citizens of the freedom loving USA, can still flee to Canada. Maybe, just maybe, claiming persecution by the evil RIAA, will get you refugee status.

    If anything, it will probably get the Vietnam vets and slave traders to spin in their graves at 45rpm...

    • ... repressed citizens of the freedom loving USA, can still flee to Canada. Maybe, just maybe, claiming persecution by the evil RIAA, will get you refugee status...

      Forget that. I think we're going to go with the time honoured American tradition of overreacting [] and turn you guys away at the border.

      HOWEVER, if you come bearing A&W Sparkling Vanilla Cream Soda, I will greet you at the border myself.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:23AM (#6556510)
    What could be more rewarding than helping to promote two great American traditions: music and property rights?" Bainwol said in a statement.

    What would be more rewarding that promoting music and property rights? Hmmmm tough one there.

    How about the immense joy, convenience and satisfaction associated with obtaining music online? Heck, how about masturbation for that matter.

  • by speedfreak_5 ( 546044 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:26AM (#6556533) Homepage Journal
    "Although Bainwol has little experience inside the music industry, he brings deep connections to the Republican Party, something the RIAA has largely lacked under Rosen's leadership."

    Hmm. Pre-paid senators...
    Already I see there's gonna be some problems with this. Mainly the RIAA getting laws that people know aren't kosher passed. And possibly a little too much influence on some issues...

    And before I forget:
    "What could be more rewarding than helping to promote two great American traditions: music and property rights?"

    When the F**K did property rights become a "great american tradition"?!?
    • When the F**K did property rights become a "great american tradition"?!?

      So I guess you don't care if I burn your house down, steal your car, or eat your food? After all, who cares about property rights?!

    • Your point's well taken. It's hard to overemphasize the point that government and business stances on the inviolability of strict property rights have hardened in last 10 years or so.

      However, keep in mind that the Fair Use America we like to think about is as much a pipedream as Music As IP. Please refer to initial drafts of the Declaration of Independence, whose writers heavily depended on Locke and Montesquieuian ideas of property being the basis of the social contract.

      The original thought is right ther
    • by heli0 ( 659560 )
      "When the F**K did property rights become a "great american tradition"?!?"

      Ever since the Bill Of Rights. Ever read Amendments 3, 4, and 5? All pertain to private property rights.
  • Big deal (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mcc ( 14761 ) <> on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:27AM (#6556537) Homepage
    The Worm That Eternally Devours Its Own Flesh has shed its skin and now has a new one. Big fucking deal. It's still the same worm. It's still evil, and it still wants to consume all that lives.

    The only difference I can see this concievably making is that now the constant anti-RIAA snipes on slashdot will no longer be occationally seen to contain unhelpful sexist comments, now that the RIAA has a spokesman and not a spokeswoman. Other than that I do not imagine the quantity or nature of slashdot RIAA posts, nor the actions of the RIAA, will change one bit.
    • So we'll call him a son of a bitch instead of a bitch, big deal, he's still a punk to a bunch of commies out in the People's Democratic Republic of Hollywood. This gentleman had better turn the direction of the RIAA or he can no longer have the mantle of conservative, we actually believe in free markets. If the French or the Chinese don't want GM corn, fuck'em, let them pay $2/more a bushel. If we don't want to buy Saudi oil, good for us, but it will cost us at the pump.
  • who's paying who? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by spamchang ( 302052 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:33AM (#6556568) Journal
    aren't the democrats traditionally the ones who get big bucks from the entertainment industry? they had an almightily funded effort to ease off the MPAA ratings debate a while ago, and it was democrats getting their pockets padded. i'm pretty angry to see the republicans getting in with the recording industry, firstly because i vote republican, and secondly because i don't agree with the RIAA. all politicians are starting to suck. (i thought frist was a nice guy in person. hopefully this is not indicative of his true nature.)
  • It really is amazing how a few extra letters on your resume can gain you international scorn and hatred from people who don't even know if you wear a toupee or engage in kinky sex. It's sort of like changing your name to Lucifer B. Mephisto in 15th century Spain and then going to the arch-bishop's wine and cheese soirée.

  • Armageddon (Score:4, Funny)

    by arvindn ( 542080 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:35AM (#6556580) Homepage Journal
    I can't help getting the feeling that as the inevitable ganging together of the forces of evil accelerates, armageddon can't be far off.
  • by teamhasnoi ( 554944 ) * <[teamhasnoi] [at] []> on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:37AM (#6556592) Journal

    Thank God I'm not sharing Midnight Oil or I could end up being 'liberated' in the head.

    *knock, knock*

    Hold on a sec....

    Hey! What the..?! *PFhhT*



  • Home address, phone number, SSN, personal e-mail addresses. What can we do to make sure he has a welcome time trying to invade our p2p networks?
    • Hey now! at least give the guy a day to prove he's right in line with the rest of the recording industry.

      Ya never know, maybe being a conservative republican (and therefore presumably a good businessman) he will figure the P/E ratio of litigation and public intimidation isn't nearly as high as say, lowering the prices of CDs and driving up sales which is ultimately what I think this debate all comes down to.

      Then again maybe I will magically get enough money for that Z5 convertible I've been wanting the

  • . . . rumors from unnamed sources on the Hill are that the only MP3 file that will be able to be shared within the U.S. and its possesions [] without fear of prosecution by the Department of Homeland Security will be Horst Wessel Lied.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    but forgets about people like Senator Disney Hollings who is a Democrat.

    Both parties deserve the bashing, but you're talking out of your ass if you think the Democrats are a safe haven from RIAA/Disney/et. al.
  • Pitchforks ready!
  • A bit of reasoning (Score:2, Insightful)

    by TroyFoley ( 238708 )
    Follow me here...
    Any good California law firm (as you know, we tend to have the most experience in such a field) will have hired one attorney into partnership for every State Supreme Court Justice, each attorney having previously been a different justice's clerk. After a while of typing all the J's decisions, they know what the Justice wants to read when going over correspondances and court pleadings.

    This new head is entirely about the personal experience of working with the head of the senate majority l
  • by dcavanaugh ( 248349 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @12:59AM (#6556702) Homepage
    Study NRA tactics. Organize a boycott. Pick one record label and concentrate on driving them into bankruptcy. Enforce a new reality on the music market. Then it wouldn't matter who is running RIAA, would it?

    Notice how Congress fears the NRA, and not just because they have guns. There are more file sharers than NRA members. Consider the possibilities.
    • first fatal flaw (Score:3, Insightful)

      by poptones ( 653660 )
      NRA members are almost zealous in their financial support.

      If those "file traders" would just leave behind the music of the corporations that sue them we wouldn't need a lobby - the problem would take care of itself because the publishers wouldn't find enough profit in the music industry to justify sustaining an RIAA. The problem is "file traders" - like the MP3.COM of yore - don't necessarily believe in that stuff about empowering the artist or in helping build a new model of distribution that would help t

      • Re:first fatal flaw (Score:3, Interesting)

        by dcavanaugh ( 248349 )
        "NRA members are almost zealous in their financial support."

        Most of them pay their dues; $35/yr. They have an incredible number of members, so it really adds up.

        "And if you're paying a lobbyist ... it ain't free any more."
        Granted, there is no such thing as "free" file sharing if you have to pay a lobbyist to defend the concept, but there are other desirable goals. It would be worth something to have competition in the music distribution industry, elimination of all the well-known unpopular business p
  • Much Brainwool
  • by CSharpMinor ( 610476 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @01:05AM (#6556730)
    The record industry has seen CD sales slump for three years, a decline it blames on online file-sharing sites where music can be traded freely and sometimes before it is even released.

    The New York times just says, "A decline caused by online file-sharing sites...." The LA Times does the same. CNN is owned by AOL/Time-Warner, and obviously just states it as though it's a credible fact. NBC/ABC/CBS ignore the issue, and follow CNN's lead when they don't. Fox... well, Fox will be Fox.

    And here Reuters is at least insinuating that a doubt may exist. What's that Eric Blair/George Orwell (real name/pen name) quote about times of lies and revolutionary truths?
  • by teamhasnoi ( 554944 ) * <[teamhasnoi] [at] []> on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @01:11AM (#6556753) Journal
    Mitch promises to bring a revival to the music industry.

    "Gone are the days when Auto-Tune carried a song! I will bring back talent to the Industry!", Mitch crowed at a Republican fund raiser, to the applause of many rich, white fat men.

    "It's high time the kids of today learned what music should sound like! I remember when talent drove the market, not the other way around! When I ascend to the throne, I will bring talent! I will bring value! I will bring CDs unencumbered with copy protection, and chock full of value!" Mitch puctuated these remarks with a pounding fist and spittle.

    Mitch finished his speech to the attendees with a rousing cry, "The RIAA will no longer be the 'bad guy'! We will sponsor new artists and stick with them, developing careers and encouraging creativity! We will offer all signed artists with new contracts, spelling out exactly what they will make - no hidden accounting!"

    "We will no longer chase file-sharers, who only do us a favor by expanding both our horizons with music, and purchase more CDs than ever before! We will never allow another American Idol or Making of the Band or manufactured marketing-friendly boy band again! All copyrights will revert to the original artist!"

    "I will personally include a puppy with every single sold! *HAHAHAAHAHA.cough cough..oh shit, I thought I could keep a straight face! Pass the bong guys, *wheeeezee* this is going to be great! I can't wait to absolutely wreck music forever! These shits are gonna be scared to look at a guitar, much less pick one up when we get done with them..I am gonna be SHITTTIIING moooonnnneeey, muthafuc...*hack* Oh, Bushies here!!! WHoooHOOO! Let's DO SOME LINES!!! Where's the White Lady??HAHAHAhaha..."

    This re-enactment is for entertainment only. It is not intended to portray Republicans as evil, rich, fat white, self-serving drug monkeys. Nor did Mitch ever say any of these things in front of me. Thank you, and please drink republicanly. ;)

  • It's going to suck for them when Howard Dean throws Gee Duhbya out on his ass along with the republican majorites in the house and senate next year.

    But no one ever said that the RIAA was very forward thinking.

    (Seriously though, aren't republicans basically the antithesis of everything the American music industry stands for? Does this mean we're going to see less sex, drugs, and black people on mtv?)
  • Actions speak louder than words. By appointing Mr Mitch Bainwol as its new chairman and ceo, the Recording Industry Association of America proves once again that its members and board of directors will seek to continue to desperately shore up their antiquated business model through legislation instead of innovation. Rather than seeking someone who's respected by both sides to actively work for solutions, they've hired another Washington insider to push their myopic agenda in Congress. The RIAA often calls for a "Free Market Solution," but nonetheless continually balks at solutions, usually rejecting them out of hand. Its members are all for a "Free Market" - as long as they control it. So instead of celebrating a wind of change by calling off our protests on August 1 and 2, we'll re-double our efforts to make them dates the music industry in general, and the RIAA in particular, will remember. Bill Evans founder
  • by phorm ( 591458 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @01:54AM (#6556916) Journal
    Interesting... I've always assumed that the RIAA wasn't lead by a head, so much as a collection of asses...
  • by davejenkins ( 99111 ) <slashdot&davejenkins,com> on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @02:01AM (#6556941) Homepage
    With such an overt political appointment, the RIAA may have just committed a tactical error: now they are seen as sitting on one side of the bench, whereas before they were seen as a 'legitimate' lobbying group for a powerful industry.

    This may affect several points:
    1. Yes, the GOP is in power, but Hollywood and the Music industry are standard DEM strongholds. They may not like their new boy, or at least won't invite him to the parties at Rob Reiner's house.

    2. They have now unzipped their fly, and are acting pretty brazenly partisan with such a move. This will turn many democrats in congress into automatic defense mode, who may slow legislation down 'just because'.

    3. In the end, Bush & Co. may end up having to choose between supporting a major US export (entertainment) vs. giving money to those 'liberal jack-offs in hollywood'-- depending on what Karl Rove says about electoral trends, that could break either way.
  • Change the Law (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MichaelCrawford ( 610140 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @02:12AM (#6556969) Homepage Journal
    Sixty million Americans use peer-to-peer networks to share music. That's more Americans than voted for George Bush. If they all engaged in a little consciousness-raising and then got organized, they could vote in a government that would make filesharing legal.

    Copyright is not a constitutional right, like free speech. While Congress is empowered to legalize copyright, it is not required to do so. Filesharing could be legalized tomorrow if Congress just passed a bill to repeal copyright.

    Change the Law [] explains this in more detail, and suggests some steps to take to legalize filesharing. You can take these steps in almost any country, not just the US:

    • Speak Out
    • Vote
    • Write to Your Elected Representatives
    • Donate Money to Political Campaigns
    • Support Campaign Finance Reform
    • Join the Electronic Frontier Foundation
    • Practice Civil Disobedience
    If you feel as I do that what I have to say in my article is important for others to read, please link to it from your own website, your weblog, or other message boards.

    Thank you for your attention.

  • The Big Picture (Score:3, Insightful)

    by bmarklein ( 24314 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @02:13AM (#6556974)
    Paul Krugman (Princeton prof. & NY Times columnist) wrote a very relevant piece that helps explain why the RIAA hired a Republican lobbyist - keep in mind that the entertainment industry, and the music industry in particular, is traditionally a Democratic stronghold. Krugman writes [] that the Republicans are refusing to deal with Democratic lobbyists. This is a new development in Washington, and is seen as an attempt to solidify "one-party rule".

    Krugman writes: "Lobbying jobs are a major source of patronage -- a reward for the loyal. More important, however, many lobbyists now owe their primary loyalty to the party, rather than to the industries they represent. So corporate cash, once split more or less evenly between the parties, increasingly flows in only one direction."

  • by heretic108 ( 454817 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @03:01AM (#6557116)
    Parking in a 'No Parking' zone:
    - $40-$200 fine

    Petty Theft:
    - $200 fine to 90 days' jail

    Aggravated Assault:
    - 90 days to 5 years' jail

    3rd Degree Murder:
    - 3 to 10 years' jail

    2nd Degree Murder:
    - 8 to 20 years' jail

    Associating With A Person Who Is Known To Have Had KaZaa Installed On Their Hard Disk:
    - 25 to life!
  • by Alien Being ( 18488 ) on Tuesday July 29, 2003 @03:19AM (#6557157)
    limit bach now
    omni law bitch
    wino itch balm
    blow manic hit
    him can blow it
    i bowl in match
    nail mob witch
    mail bitch now
    howl at ibm inc
    i watch no limb
    climb a hit now
    octal whim bin
    hint i blow mca

If all the world's economists were laid end to end, we wouldn't reach a conclusion. -- William Baumol