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United States Navy Raided by the RIAA?
By Jon Newton, p2pnet.net
(more articles from this author)
2002-12-08
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Picture this:

R. I. Ignatius Ardvaark, a record retailer in Yoohoo, Alabama, knows the RIAA (Rewarding Industry Association of America) and MPAA (MoJo Picture Association of America), are Annointed and have decreed that anyone who DLs songs and/or movies from sites other than those Blessed By Them is VILE and DEPRAVED!

Like the major US print and electronic media outlets, Ardvaark knows the RIAA has a reputation for scrofulous fairness and honesty and, therefore, anything it says is gospel. Thus, when the RIAA assures him file-sharing is eroding his sales and that the new business he's doing in computers, cd-burners, portable mp3 players, and so on, is a passing fad, he decides it's time to ACT.

Thanks also to the RIAA, he also knows every school across America is a hotbed of downloading and accordingly, raids the dorms of Yoohoo High and makes off with every computer he finds.

Thoroughly pleased with himself, he goes home to bed and tucks himself in with a well-earned Cross-Eyed Turkey on the rocks.

Then his door-bell rings.

Naturally, he answers it and to his Shock and Horror is immediately arrested by four large members of the Yoohoo Police Department (in tasteful blue and white Spandex uniforms with matching leather and chrome accessories) for - you guessed it - stealing the computers.

Of course, this could never have happened.

In fact, it's almost as stupid as the vicious and completely unfounded story the RIAA was able to talk the United States Navy Academy - whose mission is to take young midship-people and train them to, "assume the highest responsibilities of command, citizenship and government" - into confiscating nearly 100 computers it [the RIAA] claimed were storing pirated mp3 files.

Say what?

The US Navy has, after all, been cleansing the seas of pirates for decades, and what's CyberSpace if not a kind of information sea, if you follow, where cyberships of knowledge sail into the balmy reaches of ...

... but I digress.

And nor is there mention of the incident on the academy's 'current news' site.

Nonetheless, the Annapolis Capital saw fit to report that midship-people's computers allegedly containing, "illegally downloaded music and movies" were seized during a raid that occurred while the students were in class.

And if you don't believe us, go The Capital

The story also quoted Commander Bill Spann, academy spokesman, as confirming that the academy was investigating what material was on the computers and saying punishment for illegally possessing copyrighted material ranges from a court-martial to loss of leave and other restrictions.

As if the RIAA, which is no more than a bought-and-paid-for commercial organization, could wield such enormous power, even if it wanted to!

OK, so it has all kinds of senators, congress people and members of various law enforcement agencies in its pocket. So? Doesn't every large US corporation?

And even if it could crack the whip and make the US Navy jump, it wouldn't. Because as the mouthpiece for the Big Five record labels, it's below such infamy.

We say, 'Fie on you, Annapolis Capital, SHAME!'

But, on the other hand, Thomas Truxtun said in verse in 1797 (Instructions, Signals, and Explanations, Ordered for the United States Fleet, p 38 p):

"America's prosperity first from Commerce arose.
To Commerce still her wealth she owes.
Protect then Injured Commerce ..."

Related News from Mi2N:
» They're Sailors, Not Pirates


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