George Zieman is a thorn in the side of the RIAA, questioning their statistics, their ethics, their methods. He was the artist nuked from selling his own recordings on eBay by DMCA rules last October.
Now Zieman is seeking to become not just a thorn in the side, but a tremendous pain in the ass:
- The views represented in this article are those of the author. They represent my opinion solely and I am legally responsible for any action taken as a result.
Let's sue the RIAA. Now. In my name.
I am ready to lend my name as the plaintiff in a class action discrimination lawsuit against the entire recording industry on behalf of all the independent musicians in the country. This will be part of a greater action, as the facts of my case will enable an anti-trust suit against the industry, if the two are not one and the same.
The charges are:
1) Monopolistic domination of the marketplace and preventing access to all others.
2) Market restrictions which apply to all competition except the major labels.
3) An attempt to ignore all authorized music in an effort to establish a pay-for-play marketplace, even though the freely authorized music is the majority of recorded music available on the Internet.
4) False testimony before Congress. When Hilary Rosen went before Orrin Hatch in the Napster hearings, she knew for a fact that sales would be down in 2000. They engineered it. She lied to Senator Hatch's face.
What happened in 1999 was a carbon copy of what happened in 1997.
5) Perpetrating a fraud against the government of the United States. There is no empirical data to support "downloading as theft." In fact, if the labels would shut up, stop sending out free goods, and post a few mp3s, they would save about $2 to $4 billion a year.
Just ask Madonna how much exposure she got from her free "What the f***
are you doing?" hit song. And then ask her how much money she spent on this world-wide promotion.
The Internet is the world's most powerful promotional tool. It works. And it's free.
That's just the start. When I get a lawyer (I have asked Gerry Spence and leflaw) to take my case, we'll fine-tune a little. Because there is lots more.