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Ernest Miller Ernest Miller pursues research and writing on cyberlaw, intellectual property, and First Amendment issues. Mr. Miller attended the U.S. Naval Academy before attending Yale Law School, where he was president and co-founder of the Law and Technology Society, and founded the technology law and policy news site LawMeme. He is a fellow of the Information Society Project at Yale Law School. Ernest Miller's blog postings can also be found @

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« The Excessively Annotated RIAA Letter on the INDUCE Act (IICA) | Main | FCC Chairman Powell on Indecency at Always On »

July 14, 2004

The Abridged RIAA Letter on the INDUCE Act (IICA)

Posted by Ernest Miller

Sometimes, you just don't have time to read a lengthy annotation (The Excessively Annotated RIAA Letter on the INDUCE Act (IICA)). In such cases, an abriged version is much better. Brad Hill of the Digital Music Weblog has done us all a favor and condensed the RIAA's letter to the Senate. Read the original letter: Letter to Senators from Mitch Bainwol, Re: INDUCE Act.

Read on for Brad Hills' abriged version:

Dear Senator,

Please pass S. 2560, and quickly. Our sales have slipped painfully. I wish I could draw a tight, scientific connection between sagging CD product and P2P file-sharing, but I cannot. So, in this letter I'll cite "common sense" a lot. I'll also state speculation as fact, like this: "It is the relatively new online piracy that has had a truly devastating impact in a short amount of time." Doesn't that go down easily? Most journalists, who are trained to ask questions and stuff, publish unfounded statements as fast as I can utter them, so I'm counting on you for the same level of gullibility.

It's common sense that we can't compete with free. Please don't remember I said that later tonight, when you're watching a premium
cable channel. And if you happen to be drinking bottled water right now, just forget that I brought it up.

P2P is rampant. Later I'll throw around some study results funded by invested industry groups, to prove that I've done some homework, but the important point is that most of your constituents probably love file-sharing. But they are not the villains! Even though we'll sue them if we can, one by one. Damn, this isn't coming out right...listen, trust me, everyone will be happier if we can wipe file-sharing off the face of the earth. Would you do this for us? We hate P2P companies, whether they hurt us or help us. Thinking is hard! And reinventing takes too much work! Don't make us do it, Senator, I beg you.

You might have heard a bunch of bull about how S. 2560 is worded too broadly, and some hoopla about stifled innovation, and a lot of
yadda-yadda about technology companies being sued. Please. I don't need to tell *you* who's paying dues and who isn't! None of our
friends will get burned by this, and if they do, well hell, isn't "technology" the real problem anyway?

In closing, Senator, I'd like to recycle the tired and thoroughly debunked concept that file-sharing is identical to shoplifting. By so doing, I have utterly discredited myself, and rendered this communication a waste of your time. If you'd like to talk, I'll be in
the bathroom sobbing.



Comments (2) + TrackBacks (0) | Category: INDUCE Act | Oddities


1. Joe Bob Texaz on July 15, 2004 06:02 PM writes...

Well said, one of the many reasons it's been great living outside of America these past few years. If the bill passes, Americans can kiss the entire technology sector goodbye. India will pick up all the programming, China the manufacturing, and Canada will take up the executive offices.

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2. lucas on July 16, 2004 05:34 AM writes...

Great abridgment. And for the record, we in the US prefer to send our manufacturing to Mexico...

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