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Author Topic: Northeast Assembly Thread  (Read 192277 times)
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« Reply #5050 on: November 24, 2011, 11:54:36 pm »
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Aye.
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Carlos Danger
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« Reply #5051 on: November 25, 2011, 12:00:22 am »
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« Reply #5052 on: November 25, 2011, 12:11:00 am »
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« Reply #5053 on: November 25, 2011, 12:22:36 am »
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Emperor Scott
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« Reply #5054 on: November 25, 2011, 11:59:56 pm »
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Voting time has expired.  The ayes are one and the nays are two, with one member abstaining.  The bill fails.

The Assembly will now consider the legislation introduced by the gentleman from Pennsylvania.  Debate will last for 48 hours.

The Music Piracy Decriminalization Act of 2011

1. Downloading music on the internet is hereby legal.

2. Websites such as LimeWire, FrostWire and related websites are no longer at risk of persecution from the Northeast Government in any way, shape or form.

3. Illegal downloading is hereby discouraged by the adjourned Assembly.

4. Musicians may not sue any illegal downloading websites if a court case would be brought before a Northeast Court.

5. All persons forced to pay an illegal downloading fine are to have said fine repaid in it's entirety.
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« Reply #5055 on: November 26, 2011, 12:11:59 am »
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Right off the bat, this is a bill that I just can't support.  First of all, when music is illegally downloaded from the internet, the artists receive no payment for their work.  If artists aren't profiting off of their songs, they won't want to continuing making music.  Not only is this unfair, but it's counterproductive to the music industry and musicians themselves.  Piracy is no different from stealing from a store, and the bill's language allows just that.

Secondly, this bill is very confusing.  The third provision discourages - but doesn't prohibit - the illegal downloading of music, but the fourth and fifth provisions let people who are guilty of doing so off the hook and bars musicians from suing these websites.  I don't really understand how the purpose of this bill is to legalize piracy, but discourages illegal downloading in one of the provisions.  Or maybe I'm misinterpreting it.  I would certainly like some clarification or revisions made to this bill.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2011, 11:39:03 am by Northeast Speaker Scott »Logged



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« Reply #5056 on: November 26, 2011, 09:43:14 am »
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I support this bill.
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« Reply #5057 on: November 26, 2011, 09:44:39 am »
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I'm not sure I can support barring anyone's right to litigation.
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Carlos Danger
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« Reply #5058 on: November 26, 2011, 11:08:50 am »
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Hmm.  Copyrights are difficult from a libertarian perspective.  There is the matter of course that it is already de facto legal to freely download copyrighted material, and the existing copyright laws are well beyond the state's ability to enforce.

Uploading copyrighted material should probably be illegal; a copyright is essentially a binding contract similar to a confidentiality or nondisclosure agreement.  Downloading it is much more murky, the downloader is not a party to any contract, and what they are "stealing" is a commodity that is infinitely and freely reproducable and whose copying does not cause any direct harm to anyone.

Laws about receipt of stolen property can be quickly subject to reducto ad absurdam; should doing business with someone who you know receives stolen property be illegal?  Obviously, the number of degrees of separation considered necessary before it would no longer be considered illegal would be completely arbitrary.

In any event, whether uploading or downloading ought to be legal or illegal, it's clear that the existing record company business model is completely untenable and future musical acts can probably expect to receive all their income from live tours (as most of their income currently and historically has come from) with digital distribution existing as a marketing tactic.

I would support this bill but saying that certain entities may not be prosecuted for any reason is not exactly something I can support.
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« Reply #5059 on: November 26, 2011, 11:22:40 am »
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Fix the language. Tongue

How are artists supposed to be rewarded for their labor?
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« Reply #5060 on: November 26, 2011, 11:46:58 am »
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Right off the bat, this is a bill that I just can't support.  First of all, when music is illegally downloaded from the internet, the artists receive no payment for their work.  If artists aren't profiting off of their songs, they won't want to continuing making music.  Not only is this unfair, but it's counterproductive to the music industry and musicians themselves.  Piracy is no different from stealing from a store, and the bill's language allows just that.

Secondly, this bill is very confusing.  The third provision discourages - but doesn't prohibit - the illegal downloading of music, but the fourth and fifth provisions let people who are guilty of doing so off the hook and bars musicians from suing these websites.  I don't really understand how the purpose of this bill is to legalize piracy, but discourages illegal downloading in one of the provisions.  Or maybe I'm misinterpreting it.  I would certainly like some clarification or revisions made to this bill.

I'll answer chronologically--

First off, plenty of artists nowadays have come out in support of illegal downloading. The popular television show South Park even came out in favor of illegal downloading making the point that if fans are listening to the music, they'll still go to see the band in concert. The profit is still there. If more people are listening to the music, more people are likely to go see the band live. That can't happen if people are locked up for downloading.

Secondly, I'd be happy to make revisions, as the language is a bit confusing even to me. I believe my original intent was just for the Assembly to say "Don't do it, it's not right." but not arrest anyone for it. Similar to the idea that when women get abortions it is not "morally justified" and is "discouraged" but they still do it. Just perhaps an issued warning to think twice before downloading and perhaps consider buying the CD.
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« Reply #5061 on: November 26, 2011, 12:23:49 pm »
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Right off the bat, this is a bill that I just can't support.  First of all, when music is illegally downloaded from the internet, the artists receive no payment for their work.  If artists aren't profiting off of their songs, they won't want to continuing making music.  Not only is this unfair, but it's counterproductive to the music industry and musicians themselves.  Piracy is no different from stealing from a store, and the bill's language allows just that.

Secondly, this bill is very confusing.  The third provision discourages - but doesn't prohibit - the illegal downloading of music, but the fourth and fifth provisions let people who are guilty of doing so off the hook and bars musicians from suing these websites.  I don't really understand how the purpose of this bill is to legalize piracy, but discourages illegal downloading in one of the provisions.  Or maybe I'm misinterpreting it.  I would certainly like some clarification or revisions made to this bill.

I'll answer chronologically--

First off, plenty of artists nowadays have come out in support of illegal downloading. The popular television show South Park even came out in favor of illegal downloading making the point that if fans are listening to the music, they'll still go to see the band in concert. The profit is still there. If more people are listening to the music, more people are likely to go see the band live. That can't happen if people are locked up for downloading.

Secondly, I'd be happy to make revisions, as the language is a bit confusing even to me. I believe my original intent was just for the Assembly to say "Don't do it, it's not right." but not arrest anyone for it. Similar to the idea that when women get abortions it is not "morally justified" and is "discouraged" but they still do it. Just perhaps an issued warning to think twice before downloading and perhaps consider buying the CD.

Not every musician agrees with the creators of South Park on this.  Particularly Metallica, Dr. Dre, Madonna, Elton John, Lily Allen, and several others.  And those are just the big names.  What if you're a little-known artist who lives off every penny you make?  Just for the sake of argument, what if you don't do any live shows at all and solely depend on profit from online buyers?  Denying musicians the right to litigation under the assumption that the illegal downloaders will go to live shows is not just because it deprives them of compensation for their labor.  If a musician wants their music to be downloaded for free, for any intention, they ought to be entitled to making that decision.  Taking that choice out of their hands will discourage newer artists from making more music.

If we're going to pass a bill that legalizes piracy, we may as well not have a provision discouraging its practice.  If anything, we are only encouraging it this way.  So yes, there is definitely room for revision in this bill.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2011, 12:25:51 pm by Northeast Speaker Scott »Logged



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« Reply #5062 on: November 26, 2011, 12:31:02 pm »
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Big artists make plenty of money. More people come to their shows than anyone else. Boohoo Metallica can't make $400 million from a tour and they have to settle for $375 million because not everybody bought their CD. I'm all for keeping the money you earn, but not everybody can afford to buy CDs nowadays. I can't afford to go out and buy every CD and go to every concert. Don't you think I wish I could? Absolutely. But it's just not possible.

If an artist makes music and doesn't do live shows then that's their problem. It's part of being a musician. 50% of making music is recording it, the other 50 is playing live shows.

I'd be happy to make revisions though.
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« Reply #5063 on: November 26, 2011, 12:56:20 pm »
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Big artists make plenty of money. More people come to their shows than anyone else. Boohoo Metallica can't make $400 million from a tour and they have to settle for $375 million because not everybody bought their CD. I'm all for keeping the money you earn, but not everybody can afford to buy CDs nowadays. I can't afford to go out and buy every CD and go to every concert. Don't you think I wish I could? Absolutely. But it's just not possible.

If an artist makes music and doesn't do live shows then that's their problem. It's part of being a musician. 50% of making music is recording it, the other 50 is playing live shows.

I'd be happy to make revisions though.

That doesn't mean we should legalize stealing.  Can big artists live without some of that money?  Sure.  But that doesn't give consumers the right to take as they please.  Using that logic, it should be okay to steal from all major companies: Toyota, Wal-Mart, Apple, Microsoft, Gap, et cetera.  I believe Kid Rock said it best.  If we tell people it's okay to take things and not pay the producers for their hard work, fewer people will want to find careers in music.  And remember: this bill doesn't only affect the wealthy artists, this affects low-income artists, as well.  If a smaller artist's music is illegally downloaded, that person or band sees a much greater loss.

No.  If an artist doesn't want to do live shows, that's their decision.  They're still entitled to making a profit off of the work that they did.  Why shouldn't they be allowed to profit just because they're strictly internet-based?
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« Reply #5064 on: November 26, 2011, 01:06:29 pm »
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I can't afford to go to every band's concert- let's make those free and buy CDs.
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« Reply #5065 on: November 26, 2011, 01:27:43 pm »
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Big artists make plenty of money. More people come to their shows than anyone else. Boohoo Metallica can't make $400 million from a tour and they have to settle for $375 million because not everybody bought their CD. I'm all for keeping the money you earn, but not everybody can afford to buy CDs nowadays. I can't afford to go out and buy every CD and go to every concert. Don't you think I wish I could? Absolutely. But it's just not possible.

If an artist makes music and doesn't do live shows then that's their problem. It's part of being a musician. 50% of making music is recording it, the other 50 is playing live shows.

I'd be happy to make revisions though.

That doesn't mean we should legalize stealing.  Can big artists live without some of that money?  Sure.  But that doesn't give consumers the right to take as they please.  Using that logic, it should be okay to steal from all major companies: Toyota, Wal-Mart, Apple, Microsoft, Gap, et cetera.  I believe Kid Rock said it best.  If we tell people it's okay to take things and not pay the producers for their hard work, fewer people will want to find careers in music.  And remember: this bill doesn't only affect the wealthy artists, this affects low-income artists, as well.  If a smaller artist's music is illegally downloaded, that person or band sees a much greater loss.

No.  If an artist doesn't want to do live shows, that's their decision.  They're still entitled to making a profit off of the work that they did.  Why shouldn't they be allowed to profit just because they're strictly internet-based?

I think you're overestimating the amount of people that download music. It's not like CD downloads outweigh the amount of CDs bought. I'd put the ratio at somewhere around 1:300 or 400 for downloads to purchases.
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« Reply #5066 on: November 26, 2011, 01:30:32 pm »
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Anyways my point is that artists deserve to profit off of their work. Free music downloads should take place from sites where artists earn profits from advertising, not unregulated third party sharing sites. You can't really legislate that into existence but you could encourage it using tax breaks for labels and cracking down harder on third party sharing involving copyrighted material that has its own free download available officially.


Oh, btw, that ratio couldn't be more off from reality. Smiley
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« Reply #5067 on: November 26, 2011, 01:37:54 pm »
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Big artists make plenty of money. More people come to their shows than anyone else. Boohoo Metallica can't make $400 million from a tour and they have to settle for $375 million because not everybody bought their CD. I'm all for keeping the money you earn, but not everybody can afford to buy CDs nowadays. I can't afford to go out and buy every CD and go to every concert. Don't you think I wish I could? Absolutely. But it's just not possible.

If an artist makes music and doesn't do live shows then that's their problem. It's part of being a musician. 50% of making music is recording it, the other 50 is playing live shows.

I'd be happy to make revisions though.

That doesn't mean we should legalize stealing.  Can big artists live without some of that money?  Sure.  But that doesn't give consumers the right to take as they please.  Using that logic, it should be okay to steal from all major companies: Toyota, Wal-Mart, Apple, Microsoft, Gap, et cetera.  I believe Kid Rock said it best.  If we tell people it's okay to take things and not pay the producers for their hard work, fewer people will want to find careers in music.  And remember: this bill doesn't only affect the wealthy artists, this affects low-income artists, as well.  If a smaller artist's music is illegally downloaded, that person or band sees a much greater loss.

No.  If an artist doesn't want to do live shows, that's their decision.  They're still entitled to making a profit off of the work that they did.  Why shouldn't they be allowed to profit just because they're strictly internet-based?

I think you're overestimating the amount of people that download music. It's not like CD downloads outweigh the amount of CDs bought. I'd put the ratio at somewhere around 1:300 or 400 for downloads to purchases.

CD sales have been decreasing.  Here are three important statistics taken from this article.

Quote
  • The total number of albums sold in 2010, 326.2 million, was the lowest since SoundScan began compiling the data in 1993.
  • Total album sales dropped off nearly 13% when measured against sales in 2009. That's the same rate of decrease sales saw last year over 2008.
  • Digital track sales grew just one percent. This category, which saw stratospheric growth in the early part of the last decade yet never made up for the decline in physical album sales, has essentially plateaued.

CDs may still be more popular, but digital music sales are increasing.  Many people who buy physical albums are older generation.  But regardless of the ratio, I still don't see this as justification for stealing music.
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« Reply #5068 on: November 26, 2011, 06:29:10 pm »
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Well major labels are stopping CD production after 2012 so if you're going to continue on the physical CD argument, it's moot after a year. Online CD sales are better anyway. I could buy an album on iTunes for $9.99 instead of going to Target and spending $13.99. Plus it's convenient. But that's beyond the point. For those who can't afford the music, the option should be available. Plus the prohibition strategy never works. It didn't work with alcohol in the 20's, it's not working drugs and it's not working with music downloading. Human psychology leads us to believe that when told not to do something, we are more likely to do it. Therefore, I believe my colleagues should vote "aye" on this bill. Do we really want to continue to arrest our citizens? Theft is wrong, I agree. I honestly agree. But decriminalizing illegal downloading will likely result in less people doing it. It's a matter of how you want to look at it. Do you want to force people not to buy music because they can't afford it? Or do you want them to be able to enjoy music and go to concerts as per their budget allows? It's all a matter of how you want to look at it.
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« Reply #5069 on: November 26, 2011, 06:39:27 pm »
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They didn't make alcohol free after ending prohibition.
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« Reply #5070 on: November 26, 2011, 06:42:00 pm »
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They didn't make alcohol free after ending prohibition.

And music won't be totally free.

Alcohol and music are different substances. Alcohol is regulated by the Government for a reason, whereas music is not.
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« Reply #5071 on: November 26, 2011, 06:44:33 pm »
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Forgive me, but your ratio is absurd.  Also, just because CD's won't be sold eventually, the point isn't mute.  Artists still profit off iTunes sales, as well as other such marketplaces.  And the argument that decriminalization of music downloading will reduce it is ridiculous.  All the people that currently do it, will continue, and the legalization of such will only increase if a change occurs.

And for those who can't afford the music, it should be an option?  I can't afford a Mercedes Benz, can I just take one of those with nothing but "words of discouragement".  If consumers want to add music to their budget, they have the freedom to do so.  They don't however, have the freedom to steal from, and have legal protection against, an artist(s).
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« Reply #5072 on: November 26, 2011, 06:57:16 pm »
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Well major labels are stopping CD production after 2012 so if you're going to continue on the physical CD argument, it's moot after a year. Online CD sales are better anyway. I could buy an album on iTunes for $9.99 instead of going to Target and spending $13.99. Plus it's convenient. But that's beyond the point. For those who can't afford the music, the option should be available. Plus the prohibition strategy never works. It didn't work with alcohol in the 20's, it's not working drugs and it's not working with music downloading. Human psychology leads us to believe that when told not to do something, we are more likely to do it. Therefore, I believe my colleagues should vote "aye" on this bill. Do we really want to continue to arrest our citizens? Theft is wrong, I agree. I honestly agree. But decriminalizing illegal downloading will likely result in less people doing it. It's a matter of how you want to look at it. Do you want to force people not to buy music because they can't afford it? Or do you want them to be able to enjoy music and go to concerts as per their budget allows? It's all a matter of how you want to look at it.

As Cincinnatus mentioned, artists will still profit off of online sales when CDs are no longer sold.

So now you're saying that people who can't afford to buy music legally are entitled to just go ahead and steal?  If we go by this attitude, people won't have the incentive to go out and work, at all.  Stealing from a person should never be an option.

Telling people they aren't allowed to break the law and steal things from people is not 'Prohibition'.  That's completely different.  Prohibition and the War on Drugs are wrong because they infringe on civil liberties.  Passing this bill would permit people to infringe on the musicians' civil liberties and property rights.  To say you are against theft would not be credible, because your bill decriminalizes just that.  I also strongly disagree that less people will steal music if we legalize that very practice.  This bill replaces ancient law that prohibits theft with a friendly request to not partake in it.
« Last Edit: November 26, 2011, 07:00:55 pm by Northeast Speaker Scott »Logged



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« Reply #5073 on: November 26, 2011, 09:51:15 pm »
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Whatever.

I withdraw my proposal.
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« Reply #5074 on: November 26, 2011, 09:52:28 pm »
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Whatever.

I withdraw my proposal.

You don't want to consider any of the things I suggested?
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