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Joel Tenenbaum ows the record companies 675.000 dollars. Seeing as your regular mp3-cd costs about 8-12 dollars, I guess this guy must have been a serious pirate, yeah? Let’s say ten people downloaded each of the albums he uploaded. 675.000 divided by 12 divided by 10 – that’s around 5600 albums. Man, that’s what I call a real mp3 collection.But wait… Joel didn’t upload 5600 albums. He downloaded, and uploaded, 30.

22.500 dollars per song.

Does this mean he distributed 1875 copies of the songs?


This, my friends, is the proportionality of copyright infringement law: Uploading a song is worse than beating someone up, slandering them, rape, etc.

And it couldn’ve been worse. Apparently, Joel got off easy. It could have been 150.000 dollars per song.

Let me say that again:

150.000 dollars. Per. Song.



  1. Illern Illern August 1, 2009

    I don’t know what it is but it’s obviously serious 😛 I for one think that creators should get paid for their stuff. Also I think that companies that have supported them, for example paid for starting a tour or who pays for recordings should be able to earn money, maybe even a lot of money.

    In spite of that I can’t see any well proportions in some fines. Ridiculous, I think.
    I think that they are doing themselves an un-favour with this behaviour. I would take them more seriously if they wanted the money for the distributed material, _some_ money for lost earnings (not sold copies) and a fine for breaking the law (wich of course isn’t for the record companies) instead of the ridiculous sums one see all the time. Some sad rumours also tell about companies keeping all the money for themselves, giving nothing to the artist. If that’s true it’s even worse since artists seem to earn about 10% or so from records and in that case, shouldn’t they have the same proprtion of money from the money from convicted uploaders of their material?

  2. krank krank August 1, 2009

    Well, my solution is simple: Let creators be paid by means of some Basic Income system; creators do have the same right to live as anyone else, I just don’t think thay should earn more depending on the size of the consumers who like their stuff. Is something better, just because more people are willing to pay for it? I don’t think so.

    This is what happens when we have large media companies; large companies means a lot of money, and that means a lot of power. And large concentrations of power are seldom good things. Luckily, we’re entering a new digital era, where people can record their albums more or less in their own basement, and then distribute their creations directly to the consumer, either as burned physical CD’s or as mp3’s (or FLAC). The large media companies rpresent an unnaturally large monopoly, that’s now breaking apart. And they’re scared out of their wits, because their entire business model is outdated, falling apart. They have been controlling the market for a long time, deciding which artists are getting attention and which aren’t. That’s soon going to be a thing of the past.

    I hope.

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