Wednesday February 27, 2008

Bootleg windfall to send children of songwriter of "something about nails"

So back sometime around the year 2000, a couple of guys in Lafayette, LA got the wise idea to download freely available bootlegs from the internet, burn them to CD, and sell these copies for profit at places like Mushroom Records near Tulane in NOLA. Back then, there wasn't the watchful eye of the crew of the echoing the sound marketplace, who are quick to shout down any fools trying to make a buck off bootlegging. Instead, Bill Pritchard and Dave Hubbel were the subjects of a federal investigation, and as of this week have been ordered to pay over $82,000 in fines to the RIAA.

'According to court records, the bootleg concerts ranged from the Stevie Ray Vaughn and Tori Amos to Korn, Matchbox 20 and Nine Inch Nails — or what [Judge] Doherty referred to as “something about nails.” ... Doherty also ordered Pritchard to perform 350 hours of community service speaking to children about music bootlegging and piracy laws to “let them know this is serious.”

The judge told Pritchard that in selling bootlegs he had taken money that might have otherwise gone to musicians and songwriters to pay doctor bills and send their kids to school.'

I'm all about coming down on the sale of bootlegs, particularly shoddy ones, but I wonder if the artists will actually see any of the money from this lawsuit. An additional thought: These guys sold bootlegs for over four years, and had a personal library of over a thousand bootlegs, and each of them has to pay about $45,000 to the RIAA. Compare this to a case wrapped up last October where the RIAA was awarded $222,000 from one woman for sharing 24 MP3s over Kazaa.

I promise I'll quit it with the current events updates when there's something more relevant to post about, which should happen in a handful of days, if the Feb 16th nin.com post holds true.