Ever notice how vampires operate? They suck your blood all the while making you think that they are doing you the favor.
It really does appear that the RIAA and its net representative, Sound Exchange, operate under the same principle.
The RIAA has the Copyright Royalty Board under its thumb and appears to dictate web policy to that board, the RIAA tells webcasters what they will pay or else they go to jail or get sued. This seems to be coercion to me.
So, in effect, the RIAA sets royalty payments unilaterally, sucks the funds from the webcasters and makes them think that the RIAA did them the favor.
If the RIAA had its way, there'd be no webcasting at all. Each note of music would have to be bought from one of the RIAA's constituent members. No more free music of any kind, no more fair use would exist, nothing without payment. Pay through the nose, then give up your nose.
One thing that webcasters forget as victims of this policy, they could put a stop to it fast. Just stop webcasting music. When the public starts complaining to Congress to do something about it, perhaps the RIAA can be controlled by reason and not avarice.
Victimizers often forget that if they destroy the victim, their victimization ceases and they have no source left from which to suck.
Unfortunately, the so-called musical performance artists contribute to this victimization by profiting from the RIAA's activities, whether vicariously or otherwise. You can't take your profits with a clear conscience when the agency collecting for you is known to be set on destroying the source of those profits.
Musicians can create music without an audience, but do they really want that?
Just some thoughts.
BRIAN LEE CORBER, CORBERLAW@AOL.COM, Panorama City, California 91412-4656, 818-786-7133.