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Dawn raid posts music blogger behind bars

27-year-old Kevin Cogill of Culver City, California made quite a stir last June, when he posted leaked copies of nine tracks from Guns ‘n’ Roses’ upcoming album, “Chinese Democracy,” to his music blog Antiquiet for streaming. His actions earned him an investigation by the F.B.I., however, which eventually arrested Cogill in his home Wednesday, on suspicion of violating federal copyright laws.

The leak, posted June 18, quickly crashed Antiquiet’s servers and was taken down soon after – but not before attracting the attention of publications like Rolling Stone, TIME, and Wired, as well as radio stations on Sirius and Sky News UK. Cogill, who also writes under the name Kevin Skwerl, described a seemingly amicable-but-creepy series of encounters with F.B.I. agents – whom he says he fully cooperated with – before his arrest at 6:59 Wednesday morning.

Cogill appeared for arraignment at a U.S. District Court in Los Angeles later in the day, and his bail was set at $5,000. Antiquiet writer Britney Bernstein noted that bail was initially set to be $50,000, before his defense lawyer talked it down and reportedly scolded the court for allowing Cogill to be “accosted by five F.B.I. agents” instead of being ordered to appearing by a summons.

While he is not sure who had an F.B.I. investigation opened against him, Cogill said he was contacted by frontman Axl Rose’s lawyer before the investigation began.

The Family Entertainment and Copyright Act (FECA), signed into law in 2005, spilled a handful of copyright-infringing activities – of which pre-release leaking is one – over from civil courts, into criminal ones. First time offenders can face up to three years in prison. Cogill’s arrest is the third such prerelease-related arrest nationwide that resulted from FECA.

FECA also includes provisions to stop camcording, or the practice of videotaping movies while they play in a theater. Its provisions reflect a worldwide initiative on behalf of content owners to crack down on prerelease leakers of all kinds, and the last few years have seen a surge of arrests both inside the country and out.

Kathy Leodler, the RIAA’s director of investigations for its regional office in Los Angeles, hinted that more are on the way:

“The arrest of Kevin Cogill is great for the recording industry related to our online investigations,” she said. “We are very pleased with the F.B.I.'s interest and the U.S. attorney's office's aggressiveness in pursuing this investigation. We think we'll see more and more of these pre-release cases.”

Digital rights group Electronic Frontier Foundation says the law is being misapplied, however: legislators were targeting “commercial pirates selling ‘Harry Potter,’ not this guy in Culver City,” said staff attorney Corynne McSherry.

Writing in Antiquiet, Cogill says he expected arrest to come at any time.

“I’ve been asked if my legal troubles are over. The answer is that they haven’t begun. I’ve only been questioned thus far. Any day now, I could get served with papers,” he said in a post dated June 29. “All I can do in the meantime is hope for the best, and get back to business as usual.”

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What a waste...
By Proteusza on 8/28/2008 8:14:39 AM , Rating: 5
Q: How many highly trained and skilled FBI agents does it take to arrest a man who released music early, when up till now he has cooperated fully with the investigation?

A: Ask the RIAA how many they think it should take.

Its pretty sad to see that the government and law enforcement are towing the corporate line so faithfully.

But maybe I didnt know how serious a crime releasing music early. Had he just broken into Axl's house and stolen it manually he would have got lighter treatment.

RE: What a waste...
By Oxygenthief on 8/28/08, Rating: -1
RE: What a waste...
By nvalhalla on 8/28/2008 8:35:31 AM , Rating: 3
He didn't say he didn't know it was a crime, just not how serious. If you stole someones checkbook and wrote bad checks all over town (a terrible analogy), you would also probably get a lighter sentence. Hell the bank I was working at got robbed a while back and the guy was sentenced yesterday to 5 years. For armed robbery!

RE: What a waste...
By Oxygenthief on 8/28/08, Rating: -1
RE: What a waste...
By ebakke on 8/28/2008 9:23:07 AM , Rating: 5
...what do you guys think?
I think your rant went on for too long.

RE: What a waste...
By BarkHumbug on 8/28/2008 9:43:05 AM , Rating: 1
I also believe that someone committing armed robery should have their hands chopped off and sentanced to 20 years in prison. And since all our prisons are over crowded as is I say we execute all the violent offenders, whack off the willies of all the sex offenders, and remove the hands of all thieves (to include rich Enron CEO types). For all the others just brand their crime onto their forehead.

Sounds like what the Talibans were doing and look where it got them.

RE: What a waste...
By murphyslabrat on 8/28/2008 10:52:22 AM , Rating: 2
Sounds like what the Talibans were doing and look where it got them.

Cutting off rapist's and molester's, *ahem*, "willies" isn't what got the Taliban where it is. That would be an extreme and violently defensive isolationist standpoint, along with their flagrant disregard for human-rights.

Should such permanent repercussions be allowed in the US? I don't know. Do I agree with this form of punishment? Hell, yes.

RE: What a waste...
By Oxygenthief on 8/28/08, Rating: 0
RE: What a waste...
By MrSmurf on 8/28/2008 2:06:04 PM , Rating: 2
I don't think the Bush administration can spell Taliban.

RE: What a waste...
By wvh on 8/28/2008 10:45:29 AM , Rating: 5
... coming from an oxygenthief... :-P

RE: What a waste...
By Oxygenthief on 8/29/08, Rating: 0
RE: What a waste...
By maverick85wd on 8/28/2008 3:40:56 PM , Rating: 3
First of all, reference this great DT article on the usage of analogies for priacy:

Second, you are completely missing the point. This guy committed a civil crime. For that, he should probably be made to think long and hard about what he did, maybe put on probation for 6 months, perhaps a little community service. The only reason for that is because he pre-released music. I'm all for music downloading for personal use, but that really is a little crappy. Instead, he was arrested by FIVE FBI AGENTS! And now he may face up to three years in prison. For sharing music.

Sorry man, but get the hell out of town. He does not deserve to go to jail... if for no other reason than I personally don't think my tax dollars are being well used to keep this dangerous music streamer in prison for three years. And the use of federal resources (especially ones as costly as FBI agents) should never be used in the interest of a private organization (like the RIAA).

RE: What a waste...
By mmntech on 8/28/2008 9:43:30 AM , Rating: 3
The justice system has some problems. The irony is how unbalanced the punishment is. There were a couple of high profile cases here where two men were downloading and making thousands of child pornography images and videos available on P2P servers. At its very core, the crime shares a lot in common with piracy in terms of how it's obtained and distributed. Sentences for these two crimes were 18 months and 20 months, where as a typical sentence for piracy is 60 months, three times as much. Of course we know child pornography is a much more serious crime that piracy. Why are the punishments for piracy so much more extreme? Piracy is a financial crime. It doesn't cause physical or life long emotional harm to someone. Downloading or distributing songs is being put on the same levels as serious indictable crimes where as the real criminals who are doing real harm are basically getting off scot free. I'm not condoning piracy but it is sickening that it's treated as a more serious crime than child abuse.

RE: What a waste...
By AnnihilatorX on 8/28/2008 10:05:37 AM , Rating: 3
I don't disagree with most of what you said, but you have a fallancy in your logic.

The fact that those men you mentioned were sharing their pirated child abuse images and videos are actually hurting the real criminals behind the child abuse, since they get less income.

RE: What a waste...
By JustTom on 8/28/2008 10:21:06 AM , Rating: 2
I would really like a citation for these sentences. The federal minimum sentence for distributing child pornography is 5 years. From the DOJ website.

" Individuals arrested and charged in connection with this initiative are, of course, presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. The maximum federal sentence for the distribution of child pornography is 20 years in prison. The PROTECT Act, enacted on April 30, 2003, also created a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison for this crime. If an individual committed a prior sex abuse offense, the mandatory minimum is 15 years in prison and the statutory maximum is 40 years."

It is possible the convictions you speak of are prior to the change in the law or the convictions were in a state court. But it is not valid to compare federal sentencing to state sentencing since they have differing guidelines.

The sentences imposed on the federal level for distributing child pornography are much more severe than typical sentences for content piracy. There is no justification in saying that the legal system puts content piracy on an equal footing as distribution of child pornography either in sentencing or resources allocated.

RE: What a waste...
By weskurtz0081 on 8/28/2008 9:47:35 AM , Rating: 2

Interesting analogy, but I must say, it's not the same as stealing someones check book. This guy may have cost them some sales, but it was money that they DIDN'T currently have. Stealing someones check book and buying stuff would be stealing..... money they did have.

RE: What a waste...
By bhieb on 8/28/2008 10:01:16 AM , Rating: 2
Ok so say he breaks into your mail and steals your paychecks (you haven't cashed em yet)... that one better?

RE: What a waste...
By Zandros on 8/28/2008 10:10:27 AM , Rating: 2
No. It's more like you doing voluntary work, and your boss might be thinking about giving you something nice for christmas as a reward, and then this guy comes and talks him out of it.

RE: What a waste...
By napalmjack on 8/28/08, Rating: 0
RE: What a waste...
By Oxygenthief on 8/28/08, Rating: -1
RE: What a waste...
By foolsgambit11 on 8/28/2008 1:27:44 PM , Rating: 2
What he did was not stealing. If it was, then he would be charged with stealing. He isn't, and he won't be. He's charged with copyright violation. It's a different crime. Stealing deprives the rightful owner of possession of their property.

His actions almost certainly had a negative monetary impact on the copyright holders, but it doesn't deprive a copyright owner of possession of digital media to distribute copies of it. None of this should be construed as an apology for criminal behavior.

If you want a better analogy than the ones that have been bandied about, I suggest securities fraud. It's not directly stealing, but other people get hurt, and it's difficult to exactly measure the monetary loss of the injured parties. (The difference in this case is that the crime was apparently not committed for material gain.) Notice how securities fraud is also a crime that few lay people can fully understand, and is notoriously difficult to investigate and prosecute. These traits also seem to be held in common with copyright violations.

RE: What a waste...
By Oxygenthief on 8/29/2008 2:57:55 AM , Rating: 1
What he did was not stealing.

So let me get this straight...

This guy didn't make the music, and as a result was not the owner of said intellectual property. Yet he was in possession of the music. From what I understand from the article the band didn't give him a copy. Yet he was in posession of a copy. Hmmm...

How is that not stealing?

Since we simply love analogies in this forum here is another one for you. A man has two CD's sitting on his table one is for him the other is for his girlfriend. You decide to take the one for his girlfriend without asking. Now, it's easy for the guy to make another one for his girlfriend and he still has the original to accomplish the task. But that doesn't change the fact that you took something that didn't belong to you.


If you want to question why he wasn't charged with stealing it probably has something to do with the punishment involved. Stealing isn't a felony offense under a certain dollar ammount so how would GnR justify the value of intellectual property in dollars and cents? Instead if the guy is charged the way he was he gets jail time and it goes on his record as a felony.

RE: What a waste...
By Staples on 8/28/2008 10:08:01 AM , Rating: 2
People at AT are biased beyond belief. Most seem to think that stealing music is just fine because that argument benifits them.

I am inclined to believe that if we had a poll here, less than 10% of AT commenters have ever bought a digital song. I buy plenty and always have and other than my girlfriend, there is not a single people I have ever met in person who can answer this question with a yes.

So knowing that many download music for free, what good would it be to admit that they are breaking the law?

I am all for putting people in jail for this act and every time I hear 500 ATers claim that stealing music is not a crime or that 1k a song is too excessive of a fine, it makes me wish more people were dedicated to the capture of these theives.

RE: What a waste...
By Kalessian on 8/28/2008 11:06:25 AM , Rating: 3
This is simply not how the world works.

Whenever technology arrives that outdates some older technology, no one ever expects the makers/users of the older technology to sue the new users because they feel entitled to some compensation for starting up the industry in the first place.

Look at it this way, if houses/food/cars/planes suddenly became free to copy (nanotech replicators) would you have everyone refrain from copying them so that the original inventers/manufacturers could still make a living? Would everyone have to pay an idea-tax on replicators? What if you were caught making a copy of some antique worth millions?

The music industry and the RIAA are finished. Their business model is outdated, it doesn't work anymore. They're trying to force their obsolete crap on an unwilling market by paying politicians/law makers, and it isn't working.

As for people who are claiming that anyone who thinks this way "has never made anything digital," yes I agree. Why? Because it wouldn't be lucrative.... it's actually stupid. Why would anyone make anything that they know people don't have to buy, and then expect to sell it? It's like investing tons of money in VHS, it's not a smart idea.

How many people out there have tried to start a band? It's a very risky business. They could have become engineers, nurses, doctors, construction workers, etc, things that would pretty much be a solid job. But artists/athletes/actors take a risk, since a very small minority of them can make it big. The ease of which music/movies can be copied at no cost these days is just another thing they have to face.

Why should a band be allowed to work a month of the year, then sit around while cash gets raked in on CD sales? Why shouldn't they do as musicians have always done, actually play and play well ever other day for their money?

RE: What a waste...
By JustTom on 8/28/2008 11:37:31 AM , Rating: 1
Why should a band be allowed to work a month of the year, then sit around while cash gets raked in on CD sales? Why shouldn't they do as musicians have always done, actually play and play well ever other day for their money?

Why shouldn't your boss be able to force you work overtime without compensation just how it was always done? Musicians who make a lot of money do so for the same reasons everyone else who makes a lot of money. Enough people value their products to spend money. Why should someone be allowed to derive enjoyment from musicians efforts without compensating those musicians?

RE: What a waste...
By Kalessian on 8/28/2008 11:52:55 AM , Rating: 3
"Why shouldn't your boss be able to force you work overtime without compensation just how it was always done?"

Don't straw man me. I never said everything about the past was better than now.

"Musicians who make a lot of money do so for the same reasons everyone else who makes a lot of money. Enough people value their products to spend money."

But that's the point. That is changing. Their digital products are essentially valueless, according to supply/demand. Infinite supply, non-infinite demand ---> no value.

"Why should someone be allowed to derive enjoyment from musicians efforts without compensating those musicians?"

Just like you derive enjoyment from the copyrighted "happy birthday" song every time someone has a bday? Thought so.

Why should nano-replicators be able to make cars out of thin air without the car-makers getting tons of cash?

If you don't like a hypothetical argument, then I have another for you.

Why can't I sell my spit on the street? Oh, because people won't buy it, even though I worked really hard to make tons of spit-jars.

You see how this works? Some people might come by and say, "aw, look how hard he worked, let's pay him a couple bucks". Whereas others will say, "screw that, I'll make my own if I need it"

It all comes back to value, and if you have an infinite supply of something, it has no value.

Now, you can't make an infinitely free supply of real life events (concerts), so there's an idea for money.

RE: What a waste...
By JustTom on 8/28/2008 12:40:20 PM , Rating: 3
Don't straw man me. I never said everything about the past was better than now.

No what you said was this...
Why shouldn't they do as musicians have always done, actually play and play well ever other day for their money?

Just like you derive enjoyment from the copyrighted "happy birthday" song every time someone has a bday? Thought so.

Actually, no I hate that part. And singing happy birthday in a non-public setting is NOT a violation of US copyright laws.

Why should nano-replicators be able to make cars out of thin air without the car-makers getting tons of cash?

If you made a direct copy of a car you would most certainly be in violation of trademark, and probably patent laws. Whether you used nano-replicators or Harry Potter's wand.

It all comes back to value, and if you have an infinite supply of something, it has no value.

The fact is digital copying of copyrighted content is a crime. Its 'infinite' supply of it is only present absent enforcement of those laws.

If you don't want to pay for content you are legally obligated to pay for don't pay for it. But also don't use it.

RE: What a waste...
By Kalessian on 8/28/2008 2:09:58 PM , Rating: 2
"Actually, no I hate that part."

But it's against the law, as you said. Why do you get to pick and choose which laws you hate?

And the hypothetical part: If you could make infinite copies of anything, and everyone in the world could have whatever they wanted, you'd be against it? You must have seen the point I was making.

RE: What a waste...
By JustTom on 8/28/2008 5:37:37 PM , Rating: 2
"Actually, no I hate that part."

Sorry, I was unclear. I don't hate that part of the law I hate the singing of happy birthday. It usually offends my ears.

As far as being able to make infinite copies of everything so everyone could have everything they desired yes I'd be for it. However,the situation with digital content is not this situation. You can copy their music or movies but they can't replicate a items they'd desire.

RE: What a waste...
By evalese on 8/28/2008 12:57:40 PM , Rating: 2
I'm going to play the roll of the 'bad' guy here.

I don't understand why there's this attitude of 'They owe me this. I should be allowed to get it for free.' for music. More accurately, 'This artist, who's music I love and really want to listen to, should put in all of the hard work and cost of producing said music for me for free.' To me, that's just fundamentally wrong. What happens if you actually win that battle? On to games? They take lots of money and years to develop, but we can copy them to a server for infinite downloads, so they're free! Hooray! Sorry to see you in the soup line, buddy. Should've done something else with your life, but thanks for providing me with some entertainment while you thought you were going to make some money at it.

RE: What a waste...
By Kalessian on 8/28/2008 2:24:42 PM , Rating: 2
Well, personally I think that mainstream games/music/movies are extremely crappy. When 50cent is like a top artist there must be something wrong.

What about the artists that tried to make it big but failed somehow? Why no sympathy for them? Why do you only care about those who made it big and then, once they have tons of dough, risk losing a little cash on CDs because of their faith in an obsolete model?

Personally, they don't owe me anything. If I bought the equipment to copy my CDs, ie a computer and a burner, and I have the technical know-how to do it, why shouldn't I? If I can surpass their business model with a better one of my own, why can't I? That's how business works. I know more than you do, so I can get ahead. Look at all the VHS IP that DVDs destroyed while owing much success to the VHS infastructure.

My favorite games are either: MMOs like EVE-online (which is free to dl anyway), indie games (Warsow), or just plain free ones (quakelive). Then there's steam, which I use, because it's more convenient for me to dl wherever I am from my account.

If you guys want to support the artist so much, why don't you download *illegally* all of your music, price it all, and donate directly to the artists? Give them all of your money instead of just 1%? Or are you about saving *all* of the music industry's jobs? In which case, I ask why do you sit tight as more jobs go overseas, why is the music industry special?

RE: What a waste...
By evalese on 8/28/2008 4:54:40 PM , Rating: 2
The mainstream comment is a huge generalization, not to mention skirting the issue, so I'm going to guess you're only looking for a fun argument.

Artists that don't make it may or may not have a good product, but if someone buys it, they'd still get those profits from those sales. I care about all musicians, big and small. It's nice to see a Radiohead type of free music event, but big doesn't mean it has to be free. Big just means more people like it (or were exposed to it and listened to it like little sheepies).

Third item isn't a business model. Well, not a legitimate business anyway. Maybe a mafia business... It's just engaging in an activity that whoever originally legally got the music agreed not to do.

My favorite games span many genres. I do enjoy watching people play MMOs from time to time, but I've not been able to get into them that much. And I can't justify monthly fees for those that have them. Steam is convenient, no doubt.

I don't necessarily want to support the artist 'so much', I just find that it's good to give them what they ask if I want it that badly. If it's too expensive for me, I wait for a deal that I feel is fair. I'm not a fan of the music industry and their inflated prices, I just don't feel entitled to get their music for free if it isn't offered that way or if I feel that it's too expensive. The rest of your statement seems a bit irrelevant to the topic of whether or not it's right to illegally post someone else's property, but if you elect me president, I'll immediately put a stop to those insidious business practices.

And honestly, if everyone started only downloading the music without paying for it, and professionally recorded and packaged albums disappeared, I'd be sad. I still love the artwork and symbolism, not to mention good production value.

RE: What a waste...
By Kalessian on 8/28/2008 5:45:17 PM , Rating: 2
It wasn't skirting the issue. He asked "what if we won", and I replied in a way that I not only wouldn't care if the RIAA/MPAA/blah died, I welcome it. I think they're way past their time to die. I think for a long time they've decided what should be popular, and who should get all the money, and I'm not willing to support anything they do, in fact I find myself morally obligated to ruin all their fun.

"It's just engaging in an activity that whoever originally legally got the music agreed not to do."

Well that doesn't make sense. How did the pirates get it then?

Anyway, instead of buying CDs, I buy a way to make CDs. Instead of going out to eat, I buy kitchen stuff so I can make my own food. Sure McDonald's drivethru is convenient, but you don't see McD's suing everyone who is making french fries in their own home.

So basically anyone throwing around the support the artist argument is just doing it because it's convenient for them. And they have the money. No one is actually doing their best to ACTUALLY support the artist? Because as we all know, there are much more deserving people out there.

Do you see why Steam and MMOs are around? Developers realized that piracy would ruin their current business model, so they innovated and developed a new one without villain-izing their user base. And they moved to consoles which make it harder to pirate.

That's all I ask for in the music industry, just to let the market majority let things run through and see what comes of it. After all, we're sitting here arguing what is right, while the RIAA is just doing what will win them the most money. They don't care in the slightest for the little guy buying their music, they only want money. Why do they deserve fairness if they don't exhibit it in the first place? Let the market decide. Stop sending all these people to jail/suing the crap out of them.

The RIAA will die, and in its place you will see real talent and real innovation replace it. One that loves its userbase, whoever they may be. You're fooling yourself if you think music will just die out and that's that. It's been around way before the RIAA, and will be around way after.

RE: What a waste...
By kmmatney on 8/28/2008 11:50:28 AM , Rating: 2
I agree - I'm amazed at the AT bias myself. This guy obviously broke the law - he even wrote in his blog that he knew he was breaking the law
Writing in Antiquiet, Cogill says he expected arrest to come at any time

Just another attention whore...

RE: What a waste...
By foolsgambit11 on 8/28/2008 2:03:15 PM , Rating: 2
His quote was 11 days after the offense. After he had been questioned extensively by the FBI. It really says nothing about his understanding of his actions at the time of the posting.

Still, I wouldn't doubt that, as a 27-year capable of setting up streaming music from his website, he had the mental faculties to understand what he was doing was illegal. But even if he didn't, that's not materially relevant. Ignorance of the law is not innocence before the law.

I think everybody here understands that it is against the law to engage in unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials. Their argument is that it shouldn't be a crime, or, more frequently, that the penalties shouldn't be as harsh. After all, just because something is illegal doesn't mean it it should be (take interracial marriage, for instance). A free and open debate on the virtues and vices of current law should be welcomed. The comments here usually focus on:

a. the focus on the 'little guys' instead of the for-profit piracy outfits,

b. the lack of proportion in sentencing and fines between this and other crimes of a similar magnitude,

c. the difficulty in assigning a monetary value to commodities without any material value, and

d. the perceived influence of corporate interests in establishing law in this arena - from the extension of the length of copyright protections to the intensification of the penalties for violators, in their opinion, without concern for the overall social welfare.

If I missed some major talking points, I'm sorry.

I'm of the mind that we definitely need copyright protection, but that the direction things are heading in this sphere does not best provide for the common welfare.

The U.S. Constitution succinctly explains the reason for copyright law in the phrasing it uses to grant Congress power to make law in this sphere:
The Congress shall have Power ... To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries

When current law protects copyright holders for 70 years after their death, it seems that Congress' mandate to secure for authors exclusive right to their writings for limited times is being exceeded. But I guess that's a little off topic.

The point is, the reason for copyright law is to promote the progress of 'the useful arts'. We should consider whether current law accomplishes this goal.

RE: What a waste...
By Kalessian on 8/28/2008 2:52:55 PM , Rating: 2
Nice post.

Just would like to say, for drugs "the effective life of a drug patent tends to be between seven and twelve years" (wiki).

While music and movies it is 70. Kind of skewed, imo.

RE: What a waste...
By Kalessian on 8/28/2008 2:56:36 PM , Rating: 2
70 at the least, rather.

RE: What a waste...
By Samus on 8/28/2008 4:43:31 PM , Rating: 2
He's arguing this is a non-violent crime and this guy is not going to run from the law. This could have been settled in court, not with the FBI.

Your tax dollars hard at work fighting the RIAA's war, and many other fruitless wars around the world.

RE: What a waste...
By Chaser on 8/28/2008 8:31:29 AM , Rating: 2
I wonder how much you'd depend on the FBI and the "corporate line" if someone stole and patented an invention you had invested time and money to develop.

RE: What a waste...
By Proteusza on 8/28/2008 9:24:22 AM , Rating: 2
I'd phone the police, or contact my lawyer, or both. I'd leave the FBI to the serious crimes they usually investigate.

RE: What a waste...
By bhieb on 8/28/2008 9:34:26 AM , Rating: 2
Really even if they were in another state where your lawyer cannot practice and your local police have no power. The FBI is meant to handle this type of thing.

RE: What a waste...
By Kalessian on 8/28/2008 11:12:08 AM , Rating: 2
Only in this case no one "stole and patented an invention".

This is more like.. someone stole your invention and showed it to people early for free, all the while giving you credit for inventing it.

RE: What a waste...
By evalese on 8/28/2008 5:04:34 PM , Rating: 2
This is more like.. someone stole your invention and showed it to people early for free, all the while giving you credit for inventing it.

You have to substitute 'built and distributed a copy' for 'showed'. Showing an invention would not give the recipient something of their own to use.

RE: What a waste...
By snyper256 on 8/30/2008 12:56:07 PM , Rating: 2
Who wants to listen to low-quality, grainy music?

I think "showed" is just perfect.

RE: What a waste...
By nycromes on 8/28/2008 8:39:20 AM , Rating: 3
It isn't a corporate line, its a federal law and its totally seperate from the corporate events going on. This guy broke the law and there are consequences for doing so, even if you don't agree with the law.

"I don't agree that this speed limit should be 25mph, I am going to go 50mph." Guess what, you are still going to get a ticket, even though you disagree with the law.

These industries have done some very underhanded things, but it doesn't mean we excuse other people's criminal activity that occurs which is related to it. As my mother always said, "Two wrongs don't make a right"

RE: What a waste...
By Proteusza on 8/28/2008 9:23:27 AM , Rating: 2
I agree that he broke the law, and he should rightly be punished. My point is that why not send round two normal police officers?

My point is not "why was he arrested at all?", it is "why was he arrested by the FBI?"

Please note, I'm not American, its just that we get the impression that the FBI investigates serious crimes, such as murder, organized crime etc. So if this is completely normal for such a crime, then I misunderstood. Even so, I fail to see why 5 officers were needed to arrest him.

My point about the corporate line is that it seems that the RIAA has dictated that copyright theft is henceforth to be seen as a serious crime.

RE: What a waste...
By bhieb on 8/28/2008 9:41:00 AM , Rating: 2
Probably because of state line issues. If Axle is in CA and this guy is in TX (or where ever). Then the copy right infringement is a federal crime. And although Hollywood would like to portray the FBI as some super crime busters, their job is to police Federal crimes, where police are used for local and state crimes. Funny but murder would not fall under the FBI since it is not a federal crime but a state one, it would be perfectly legal to kill someone in a state with no law against it (fortunately none exist).

I know I'm probably over simplifying it (or have it completely wrong), but that is probably why they were brought in.

RE: What a waste...
By othercents on 8/28/2008 9:43:28 AM , Rating: 2
I fail to see why 5 officers were needed to arrest him.

I think the real reason is that they wanted to prove a point and show that this is a serious crime and deter anyone else from doing this no mater how much they cooperate.


RE: What a waste...
By bhieb on 8/28/2008 9:51:41 AM , Rating: 2
Agreed, maybe some dumbass protocol. There is a lot of wasted man power in the US government. But I doubt it "took" 5 rather there just happened to be 5, in the end who cares at least they weren't back at their desks surfing DT on my tax dollar.

RE: What a waste...
By JustTom on 8/28/2008 10:27:37 AM , Rating: 2
He was arrested by the FBI because he broke a federal law and is going to be tried in a federal court.

The FBI is not for investigating serious crime, it is for investigating federal crime. Almost all murder, rape, and other serious crime is handled by local and state police. Organized crime is often investigated by the FBI because of violations of federal law not because it is deemed serious.

RE: What a waste...
By jRaskell on 8/28/2008 11:04:34 AM , Rating: 2
That is for the most part correct, except as soon as any serious crime crosses state borders (multiple murders across state borders, kidknapping across state borders, etc.), the FBI has the option of stepping in and taking charge, but will typically only do so if jurisdiction issues become a problem with the investigation.

RE: What a waste...
By althaz on 8/29/2008 3:09:45 AM , Rating: 2
Kidnapping is a federal crime and is frequently handled by the FBI regardless of the crossing of state lines, is it not? I am Australian, but I'm fairly sure that's the case.

According to the X-Files, local and state authorities may request assistance from the FBI, though Chris may have made that up to give Mulder and Sculli something to do :).

RE: What a waste...
By wvh on 8/28/2008 11:01:59 AM , Rating: 2
Exactly. Why does the FBI wait and then on some random day "at 6:59 Wednesday morning" goes all out dragging a guy who uploaded some MP3s out of his bed?

This smells like RIAA strong-hand mafia tactics. It's not that the guy didn't do anything wrong; it's just that the law pretty much seems to side with the corporate money in the US, where one individual fighting the RIAA (or any large corporation) isn't exactly a fair 1-on-1 fight. It feels like the RIAA and perhaps FBI chose this course of action to set an example.

Why not just send him a letter to show up in court?

RE: What a waste...
By AstroCreep on 8/28/2008 8:13:17 PM , Rating: 2
Well, frankly, you wouldn't want to tread lightly with only a couple of Federal Agents when dealing with the man who brought about Chinese Democracy.

Gun's and Lawyers
By Regs on 8/28/2008 8:30:23 AM , Rating: 2
It seems like the only musicians taking action are the ones that are so rich anyway they can afford the court and lawyer fees as if they needed the money anyway.

Music or other media shouldn't have to be free from publication and distribution, I agree. Though I think the RIAA or the legislative branch are not taking proper steps to enforce the law.

Others will argue electronic theft is not depriving anyone of anything. Except for of course sales, a right to free enterprise, jobs, peoples pay checks, way of life....Of course this is David vs. Goliath will hardly sway public opinion for the RIAA.

RE: Gun's and Lawyers
By Icelight on 8/28/08, Rating: 0
RE: Gun's and Lawyers
By NullSubroutine on 8/28/2008 10:19:46 AM , Rating: 3
Except theft requires the ability to take ownership of property and to do so illegally. Since you cannot own or take ownership of an idea or 'digital' copy it is not theft. It is what it always was, copyright infringement.

It is no different than when a company like when Microsoft and Sony infringed on the patents for vibration controllers. It's also no different than you signing along to songs, which is technically copyright infringement as well.

I don't see you going around calling the FBI for people singing songs out loud, so get off your soap box.

RE: Gun's and Lawyers
By JustTom on 8/28/2008 10:38:55 AM , Rating: 3
It's also no different than you signing along to songs, which is technically copyright infringement as well.

This is a serious misreading of the law. Singing in a venue that is open to the public is a violation of law. So performing a son at a restaurant would be a violation of the law; singing in your car not so. The reason being the restuarant is a public venue while your car is not. The actual wording of the law -pertaining to public performance - is:
"to perform or display it at a place open to the public or at any place where a substantial number of persons outside of a normal circle of a family and its social acquaintances is gathered;"

Furthermore, you would be hard pressed to find an actual example of someone singing "Welcome to the Jungle" while strolling down the street being arrested. The law is not defined simply in how it is worded it is how trial courts view it. And as of yet there is not a single case of which I am aware of someone being sued/arrested for performing music in a non-public venue.

RE: Gun's and Lawyers
By Ratinator on 8/28/2008 11:17:04 AM , Rating: 2
So then Karaoke night at the bar would be illegal your definition.

RE: Gun's and Lawyers
By JustTom on 8/28/2008 11:32:20 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, although it is not my definition it is federal statute. However, many if not most Karaoke bars pay ASCAP dues for just this reason. And Karaoke bars have been sued for this.

RE: Gun's and Lawyers
By NullSubroutine on 8/29/2008 5:32:40 AM , Rating: 2
Since I said him turning people in, I kind of implied that it would yes, be a 'public performance' because someone else was able to hear it. Such as singing the birthday song, that is a public performance, the only thing with the birthday song is some guy bought the rights to it so everyone could sing it freely forever. It is also no different than playing your car music loud off a CD and other people can hear it. It is all 'illegal' according to copyright law.

I make this point to the people that say "downloading X is theft and illegal" that it is not theft. They also try to make the statement that if it is illegal it is wrong, where I also point out that these same copyright laws have the above things as illegal. If something is wrong, simply because it is illegal, then you can't pick and choose what is right and wrong if it is all illegal.

RE: Gun's and Lawyers
By Icelight on 8/28/2008 3:50:41 PM , Rating: 3
Hold on, I should have clarified my post a bit more. I don't necessarily agree it is theft...but it is wrong.

That's my standpoint, it is wrong and no amount of justification can result in digital piracy being "right".

RE: Gun's and Lawyers
By Cobra Commander on 8/28/2008 4:40:28 PM , Rating: 2
In this case Axl Rose's knowledge of the penal system is probably quite outstanding. He's on a first-name basis with many a judge and lawyer from his heyday.

Serves him right...
By Oxygenthief on 8/28/2008 8:17:27 AM , Rating: 2
Every choice has it's consequences.

RE: Serves him right...
By Oxygenthief on 8/28/2008 11:13:34 AM , Rating: 2
On a side note, how in the hell did two topics that were posted 30 and 45 minutes after this one make their way to the top of the posts above this one?

Kinda new to the comments section, just curious...

RE: Serves him right...
By maverick85wd on 8/28/2008 3:47:49 PM , Rating: 2
when a comment gets replies it's moved up over those that do not, and/or those that have fewer.

RE: Serves him right...
By Oxygenthief on 8/29/2008 3:08:46 AM , Rating: 2
Ah, thanks bro.

Terrible Crime
By FDisk City on 8/28/2008 9:39:43 AM , Rating: 3
Anyone caught posting Guns N’ Roses music should get a lot more than three years!

Now to wait and see how many Daily Tech mods are also Guns N’ Roses fans.

RE: Terrible Crime
By chmilz on 8/28/2008 10:42:47 AM , Rating: 2
Axel made a couple albums 20 years ago that still sell better than most of these no-hit-wonders that are around now.

Just because you don't like them doesn't mean they're not good. Guns n' Roses has and will continue to go down in history as one of the greatest hard rock acts in history.

RE: Terrible Crime
By Cobra Commander on 8/28/2008 4:36:36 PM , Rating: 2
Actually it's a Perfect Crime...

What everyone wants to know....
By Meinolf on 8/28/2008 1:29:44 PM , Rating: 2
What everyone wants to know was the music any good.

RE: What everyone wants to know....
By Cobra Commander on 8/28/2008 4:38:27 PM , Rating: 2
20% of GN'R still is part of GN'R... 3 guitarists later and still not actual band... whaddya you think???

By m0mentary on 8/29/2008 11:37:48 AM , Rating: 2
well, do you like Velvet Revolver?

By alanightz on 8/28/2008 12:38:24 PM , Rating: 2
I guess that serves Axl Rose right. Back in the day he ripped off thousands of fans by just not showing up to concerts they payed for, and they got no refund.

Kind of backwards that he got away with that and then some blogger gets arrested for posting 9 songs

RE: karma
By JustTom on 8/28/2008 1:39:34 PM , Rating: 2
Well there are other members to the band... I had GnR cancel a show, I got a refund. If I hadn't I would have contacted a lawyer. I do know often he'd just leave the stage after 20 minutes, too stoned or piss drunk to want to continue.

By BB33 on 8/28/2008 11:55:43 AM , Rating: 2
Ok so what is the issue with setting an example, it can work as a deturant for crime. Did they hurt him, no just embarresed him a bit. Will it scar him for life, probly not. will it actually work to prevent others from doing the same thing who knows.

Prove it!
By RabidDog on 8/28/2008 12:01:32 PM , Rating: 2
This is a stupid criminal law to begin with. But the Defense should have the record company prove that it will be released. What is the planned date of the release?
Just recording a song doesn't mean that it will be released.

On a side note, there was an article a couple years ago discussing how the GnR album is most expensive album in history. Over 10 years in the making (at that time), so long in fact that the studio musicians and engineers formed a band and released their own CD.

By Polynikes on 8/28/2008 12:15:06 PM , Rating: 2
First off, I'm glad the guy released it. Guns 'n' Roses waited way to long to release that material. But I guess GnR doesn't care about their fans.

That said, how could that guy be so STUPID as to publicly post it on a f*cking BLOG? Did he want to go to prison?

This is what happens...
By saiga6360 on 8/28/2008 3:37:51 PM , Rating: 2
when you mess with FECA

You guys are retarded
By GlassHouse69 on 8/28/2008 9:51:17 PM , Rating: 2
You guys are retarded.

there is NO debate about the morality of this if you are a fan of the band.

does anyone know that CHINA was supposed to be released OVER TEN YEARS AGO!??

it cost insanely so much cash that it killed itself. It might not ever be released and is locked up in stupidity.

it should have been leaked 5-6 years ago after the band went into non existence.

this is the guy you can blame
By rika13 on 8/29/2008 9:21:21 AM , Rating: 2

lapdog of the RIAA and loved by democrats everywhere (dems sleep with media, Hatch makes it look like a GOP/RIAA/MPAA love triangle)

"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer

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