I’ve read your article or rather justification for “copyright infringing” and not stealing. I’m a music industry major at Syracuse University and there are many flaws in your article. Yes, you are stealing while you take part copyright infringement. When you acquire something for free that is available legally only through purchase you are stealing that product. Text book definition of “stealing” is: “To take (the property of another) without right or permission.” As for stealing actual dollars from the record industry, again you are in fact guilty. The record industry only makes its money through record sales. To make reference to Jay Z’s rock the mic tour and his lavish earnings is irrelevant. The “untruthable” is nothing but pure reality. Every major label is currently operating at a loss. Sony Music Entertainment lost $160 million last year Its wonderful that you bare no moral burden from stealing from the successful, like Jay-Z and John Mayer, but what about the unsuccessful artists at these major labels? It’s important to keep in mind that for every Jay-Z and John Mayer there are a couple hundred artists at these major labels who are making no money but rather costing the record companies millions. It’s the millions that these John Mayer’s make (through record sales) that keeps the unprofitable record companies profitable and able to pay their smaller artists. For every small artist signed to one of the Top 5 record companies subtract $1 million dollars from their operating costs. If a minimum of 300,000 records isn’t sold money spent on these artists is lost. Jay-Z and his multi-platinum CD sales is what keep these companies and smaller acts afloat. While the record companies were guilty of price fixing, they now offer you music cheaper and through different outlets (itunes, the new napster, buymusic.com)…. As to the charge that these lawsuits only fund the RIAA and not the artists; the RIAA sole purpose is to serve and protect the record industry, these are the guys paying the artists. The RIAA is a nonprofit organization. There is no man on top making money from these lawsuits. The RIAA is the shield that protects the music industry from people like you. Some points that you made are legitimate but not the only source problems that plagues our now fragile music industry. The music business is “hit driven” over the past few years it is fair to say that there have been fewer hits. However, to ignore the blatant truths and effects that result from downloading and copying of CD’s is senseless and a nice way to comfort the millions of thieves at both SU and UR and ease their consciences from accepting responsibility for their actions. So please if you are going to download, at least admit that you are stealing and don’t console your guilt by blaming a reformed industry. Accept responsibility and either stop downloading, or stop trying to justify downloading through bitching.

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