RIAA Battles Washington Post On NPR
January 4, 2008

Yesterday, the RIAA came out in defense of itself after a Washington Post article claimed the organization now believed that simply ripping a CD onto your computer for personal use was illegal. A spokesperson for the RIAA told CNet that the Post's story was simply "wrong" and that putting songs into a shared folder online was the activity dubbed illegal in a recent lawsuit.

Later in the day, RIAA President Cary Sherman debated Post columnist Marc Fisher, who wrote the original story, on National Public Radio. CNet reports that Sherman explained that "The Post picked up one sentence in a 21-page brief and then picked the part of the sentence about ripping CDs onto the computer," adding that the paper "simply ignored the part of the sentence about putting them into a shared folder."

CNet blogger Greg Sandoval writes that Fisher did not discussed the 'shared folder' aspect of the story on the NPR debate, and instead focused on a quote from a Sony BMG lawyer who said in court "when an individual makes a copy of a song for himself, I suppose we can say he stole a song." Sherman said that the lawyer misspoke and had personally told him after the fact that she had misheard the question being asked. "She thought that this was a question about illegal downloading when it was actually a question about ripping CDs. That is not the position of Sony BMG. That is not the position of that spokesperson. That is not the position of the industry."

"Not a single [legal] case has ever been brought [by the RIAA against someone for copying music for personal use]," Sherman concluded. "Not a single claim has ever been made."




 
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Def Jam Recordings

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