17 May 2006

Distant Thunder - from Space

Well, it was bound to happen:

The recording industry sued XM Satellite Radio on Tuesday over its new iPod-like device that can store up to 50 hours of music for a monthly fee, sending to the courts a roiling dispute over how consumers can legally record songs using next-generation radio services.

Time and again, a new technology that allows users to do something novel with content gets attacked by the self-appointed guardians of the sacred copyright flame - and the users' desires and rights can take a running jump. And time and again, it turns out that the new way of transmitting, making or storing copies generates more revenue, not less: think cable television, video cassettes and - soon - digital downloads of music. I'm sure satellite radio will be the same.

If only there were somebody with half a neuron in the content industries that could learn a little from history, and help forge the future, instead of needlessly fighting it all the time. (Via IP Democracy.)

Update: It appears that those behind the new lawsuit, the RIAA, specifically promised never to do this. (Via Techdirt.)

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