Artists speak out against file trading


— 5:02 AM on September 26, 2002

We've seen the RIAA challenge file trading networks legally, but it looks like they're taking a stab at the PR battle now. Today, through a coalition of artists and labels called Music United for Strong Internet Copyright, a series of print, radio and television ads will be released that will compare file trading to stealing. Artists won't be crying a sob story, as Wired reports. Instead, they'll argue the legal issues:

This is not a campaign that was created to engender sympathy," said Hilary Rosen, CEO of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). "We are saying there is a significant problem, it is affecting us and it is illegal."
C|Net is reporting that even Britney Spears is getting in on the action:
One of the ads contains quotes from a variety of singers, including Britney Spears.

"Would you go into a CD store and steal a CD?" Spears asks. "It's the same thing--people going into the computers and logging on and stealing our music."

Britney isn't likely to change a savvy, hardened file-trader's mind, but the ads could have a huge impact on casual traders and mainstream users who may think twice when firing up KaZaA, if not from a guilty conscience, then from the fear of prosecution. Casual file traders may be the only group the recording industry really has a chance with, but will ads win them over?
 
   
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