ISP to RIAA: Pay up or do your own dirty work

ISP to RIAA: Pay up or do your own dirty work

Summary: I love stories of the little guy going head-to-head with the big guys, especially when the big guy looks like a fool in the end.CNET's Greg Sandoval tells the story of a small Internet Service Provider in Louisiana whose owner has refused to play ball with the Recording Industry Association of America - at least on the RIAA's terms.

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I love stories of the little guy going head-to-head with the big guys, especially when the big guy looks like a fool in the end.

CNET's Greg Sandoval tells the story of a small Internet Service Provider in Louisiana whose owner has refused to play ball with the Recording Industry Association of America - at least on the RIAA's terms. Last week, the RIAA announced that it was going to shift strategies to fight piracy. Instead of filing mass lawsuits, the RIAA said it is partnering with ISPs to identify, serve notice and potentially disconnect file-sharers.

Jerry Scroggin, owner-operator of Bayou Internet and Communications, doesn't take very kindly to legal threats or being bullied into being an RIAA enforcement cop. "They have the right to protect their songs or music or pictures," Scroggin told CNET. "But they don't have the right to tell me I have to be the one protecting it."

Likewise, if the RIAA expects him to basically perform work on its behalf, it had better bust out a checkbook. He doesn't work for free. (Check out the back-and-forth between Scroggin and the RIAA. Scroggin asks the RIAA for its billing information so he can send an invoice for his work. The RIAA's response: "Huh?")

Good for Scroggin.

Like many others, I don't believe in music piracy and am more than willing to pay for tracks to add to my collection. I respect the work that the artists do and think they have to the right to be compensated for their work. But the Recording Industry Association of America has done more harm than good, giving its industry a black eye with its rigid, lawyer-driven approach and deteriorating a chance at public sympathy over piracy losses.

The RIAA was smart to (finally!) stop filing suit after suit and go another route. Unfortunately, this path doesn't appear to be any more effective than the last one.

Topics: Piracy, Browser, Enterprise Software, Security, Telcos

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15 comments
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  • Good for them

    Great move by this ISP.
    tommcd64
    • I hope that mine

      would take the same attitude.
      davebarnes
    • I second that emotion

      Yes, 3 cheers for them and I hope it gives heart to other ISPs.
      Sagax-
  • One in millions......... maybe more.............

    A man with convictions and the guts to back them up.

    Long live Jerry Scroggin! Hip, hip, hooray!
    Ole Man
  • Always good to see some courage

    No, it's not the job of ISPs to enforce copyright laws, nor should it be. I can't say I approve of the way the RIAA has gone about it, but the proper avenue for redress is the courts. Trying to draft unwilling third parties to assist in enforcement is completely inappropriate, particularly when the effect is to shift the financial burden from the copyright holder (where it belongs) to others.
    John L. Ries
    • They can redress in the courts all they want to

      But that's not going to stop file sharing.

      ~

      Besides, encrypting your torrents and Peer Guardian go a long way...
      hasta la Vista, bah-bie
  • RE: ISP to RIAA: Pay up or do your own dirty work

    The ISP cannot be held accountable for the actions of it's users.
    The ISP has no right to block paying customers just to satisfy the RIAA - especially when RIAA is not presenting any proof.

    Spirovski Bozidar
    http://www.shortinfosec.net
    Bozhidar
  • RE: ISP to RIAA: Pay up or do your own dirty work

    If I'm an ISP, and got these notices from the RIAA, I would make the following demands:

    1. Court order. I would not take part in persecuting a customer unless there were a court order.

    2. Evidence of wrong doing, beyond simple IP addresses, as IP spoofing is both easy and common.

    3. NDA - the end users intellecutal property needs to be protected as well - not just the RIAA's.

    4. Fees - starting with compensation for lost revenue (a lost customer because their service is being ended), then moving on to expenses, including staff salaries itemized by hours spent tracking activity, and setting up tracking infrastructure.

    If the RIAA can't provide all four, then they can go to hell.

    Wait a minute, the RIAA can go to hell anyway!

    The sooner the RIAA, and "the big four" all die, the better. In the digital/internet age, they are all less than useless. Their gravy train is dying fast. And once they are dead, then artists can make more money, and consumers can get more for their money, because the useless "mafia" errr, "RIAA" won't be grafting money from the pot while providing nothing of any value in return.

    Really, is there anyone more hated than the RIAA and the big four record companies right now?

    Osama bin Laden perhaps. But that's a toss-up! ;)
    super_J
    • more on this point ...

      Of the 40,000 lawsuits the RIAA has filed against grandma's, kids, and dead people, of the revenue received from the extortion, errr settlements, or lawsuets won, not a single dime has gone to any artists.

      So the RIAA, quite clearly, is not out to protect the interests of artists, much less compensating them.

      In fact, with normal CD sales, or mp3 download sales, the artists get a microscopic porportion of the revenue.

      In the old days, the record companies provided a somewhat useful service in the music biz - providing funds to pay for up front costs of signed artists to record their wares, promotion, and distribution. In return, the record companies kept the lions share of the profits, with very little profit going to artists and retailers.

      But nowadays, with recording becoming cheaper due to technology (Apple's "Garage Band" anyone?), promotion can be done over the web, and distibution cand be done over the web, the reocord companies serve no real purpose, and provide absolutely nothing of value to society. They just rip off artists, irritate customers, drive up costs, and overall make themselves a pain in the @ss.

      So the Record companies old business model is dying, thanks to modern technology and the web. But the big four banded together to form the RIAA, to be their mod/extortion/bully stong arm, and use the courts to persecute and extort people. After that strategy failed (big surprise!), they decided to use ISPs to be their cop/bully, for free no less (or so the RIAA hopes).

      But this Scroggin guy says "no way, I'm not your cop for free!- pay up motherf#$%@&*!

      I'm sure all ISPs will follow suit, unless the RIAA provide huge incentive otherwise.

      It all looks desperate to me. They're grasping at straws to save their obsolete business model and gravy train. But it's only a matter of time.

      The clock is ticking RIAA and big four. Adapt or die.
      super_J
  • Okay, so Scroggin wants billing information, so how about this?

    "Okay, I'd like to ask you for your billing information so this will charge you $285/month plus double the tax."

    Good Scroggin, for setting up such a scam. Anything else?

    *continues to laugh, laugh, and laugh happily*
    Grayson Peddie
  • RE: ISP to RIAA: Pay up or do your own dirty work

    The RIAA and Directv, each time they sue an innocent person had to lie to the court. Where the person was innocent, it can be nothing but a lie. While the Justice system knows they are lying in in many cases, The justice system does nothing to protect the public. Next time you are a juror or a witness, do what Justice has done and ignore Justice. Jury Nullification is a good start. Let's see what Justice thinks when they are ignored just like innocent victims are.
    syber@...
  • RE: ISP to RIAA: Pay up or do your own dirty work

    The Grateful Dead allowed taping at their concerts. Everyone bought their albums anyway.
    They made more money than just about any artist.
    The more you spread your creativity the more people know of you and then go to your concerts and also buy T-shirts and stuff.
    Nowadays, what is considered "creativity" I wouldn't pay or download because it is junk.
    Is the RIAA really serious?
    I think they are just stupid.
    diowrite@...
  • RE: Where the person was innocent, it can be nothing but a lie.

    Huh? Can you please explain your logic here?
    trybble1
  • RE: ISP to RIAA: Pay up or do your own dirty work

    Hell YEAH!

    Nice to see someone standing up for themselves against the white collar RIAA man carrying the big stick. And if a little redneck ISP owner out there in Louisiana can do it, I bet other people can get some balls and do the same...
    babyface09123
  • dirty work is right! illegal search and seisure is what it is. (nt)

    :)

    .
    wessonjoe