by WHO on Feb-20-2000

If you have no idea what Napster is, quit reading now, visit the website, find out what it’s all about, then come back here so I can give you your opinion on the subject.

Quick disclaimer: I have not yet downloaded Napster. To date, I have not ‘stolen’ any copyrighted material. So keep that in mind before you clog my inbox, Bible thumping and condemning me to Hell for stealing. I would also like to point out that the only reason I have not downloaded is because I am out of space on my computer. As soon as I upgrade, you’d better bet your sweet ass I will be downloading MP3’s faster than Clinton can get his zipper down. I will also like to point out I will be orgasming as I do this.

Now back to your regularly scheduled rant…

After a couple of weeks visiting the Napster site as well as watching a documentary of the controversy on MTV, I have found that the main argument against Napster is that it is taking the money out of the pockets of artists. People con-Napster have righteously cried out to Napster supporters everywhere, “Would YOU do a job you weren’t getting paid for?” They shout hypocrisy. They cry theft. They claim it’s *gasp, choke* copyright infringement.

And they are absolutely right.

But they are missing one very important word in their ranting: uncontrollable. It is uncontrollable theft. It is uncontrollable copyright infringement. It may be hypocrisy at it’s finest, but what in the Hell do you think you’re going to do about it? The primary users of Napster software are kids and college students. So what is your game plan here, chumps? Sue them? Put them all in jail? Bend them over your knee and give them a good, sound spanking? Hey! I’ve got a great idea! Why not give them all a good ‘talking too!’ I’m sure if you stomp your foot and call them all thieves they will say to themselves, (While cheesy ‘Full House’ theme music is playing in the background) “Gee, maybe these guys are right. I’ve been bad. I’ll never to it again. And just for good measure, I think I’ll go ground myself. That will teach me!” Yeah. Right.

Another word I’d like to point out is: Technology. I’ve noticed that most people in this day and age have a love/hate relationship with this word. They like microwaves, email, and minivans with temperature control, but when it comes to something a little more complicated (Like MP3’s) they get their panties in a new millennium jumble. The bands that are suing Napster are a prime example of this phenomenon. Metallica, Dr. Dre, and Eminem like their electric guitars and fancy synthesizers, but shun MP3’s like the witches in Salem. They get on T.V and declare to the masses, “It is the downfall of music! You are sucking our wallets dry! Don’t you want us to be able to afford all of our fancy cars, illegal drugs, and overpriced clothing so we can prance around on the television and make you feel inferior to us?”

Sadly, the answer to those questions is: “Of course we do.” We want Dr. Dre and Metallica to be rich. Filthy rich. Using money as toilet paper rich. I don’t think anyone worthwhile can honestly say to himself that they want the people who have provided them with hours of entertainment to go broke. After all, if you do a job, you are going to get paid for it. That’s the American way.

However, technology WILL advance…whether Dr. Dre and Metallica like it or not. Instead of complaining about Napster and suing their fans, they should put their heads together and try to figure out a way to make money OFF of MP3’s. Remember how scared the film industry got when home videos were introduced into the public? Was that the downfall of the movie business? NO! The movies industry now makes a phenomenal about of cash from selling movies, renting movies out, etc. I have complete faith that the record industry can come to a similar conclusion regarding MP3’s.

But then again, Dr. Dre and Eminem have a hard enough time figuring out how to keep their pants pulled up and Metallica is busy soaking their last 3 brain cells in beer…

Face it, Metallica and Dre are shooting themselves in the foot with this lawsuit. Does anyone remember the Grateful Dead? The Grateful Dead ENCOURAGED people to steal their music and make bootlegs. Did that end up being the financial downfall of the band? On the contrary, the Grateful Dead ended up with the LARGEST group of loyal fans in the entire history of music: People who would spend their lives following the band around for the sole purpose of attending every single concert that band performed! (Which, by the way, made the Grateful Dead a significant amount of money) But let’s be honest here: How many of you Metallica fans have soured on the band after this whole lawsuit was put into effect?

In conclusion:

Suing your fans won’t make you money.
Suing Napster won’t make you money.

The record company and artists need to find a NEW way to make money. Hiring a slew of bloodthirsty lawyers, closing your eyes real tight and wishing REALLY HARD for technology to go away is not going to happen. Period.

One last thing: I found two humorous little parody cartoons featuring Lars. To view those gems, click here or here. Also, I was never really into Motley Crue until I saw this.


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