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Lawyer Asks RIAA To Investigate Bush Twins 529

Posted by kdawson
from the sauce-for-the-gander dept.
tanman writes "After reading an article in the Miami Herald that said "[President] Bush's twin daughters gave him a CD they had made for him to listen to while exercising," a Florida lawyer calculated statutory damages of $1.8 million and has sent a letter to the RIAA asking that they 'display the same vigor in prosecuting this matter and protecting the rights of your rights-holders that it has displayed in enforcing those rights against other alleged violators.' From the letter: 'This is a serious violation of copyright. As you know, whichever of your member organizations that are right[s]-holders for the copied musical works may be entitled to statutory damages of $150,000.00 per musical work copied.'" Update: 06/22 18:55 GMT by KD : The lawyer in question has retracted his analysis and now says no laws were broken, probably.
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Lawyer Asks RIAA To Investigate Bush Twins

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  • Excellent (Score:5, Funny)

    by MysteriousPreacher (702266) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:23PM (#19610583) Journal
    It's about time the RIAA took a stand against these music thieves. A colleague at my work who is known for having copied music went on a shooting spree. If the RIAA had dealt with him, I would not have had to step over bodybags on my way to lunch.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:54PM (#19611103)
      The problem with you liberals is that you think everybody is equal, and that it should always be that way. Not so. GW Bush and his daughters are rich, because they are good, brave, and courageous. They are literally better people than poor people. They wouldn't be rich otherwise.

      Wisdom is the skill of knowing what to overlook. Other rich people, who are similarly better people than poor people, know this skill of wisdom. This explains perfectly why rich people overlook other rich people's crimes. It's because they are WISE, you impoverished ignoramous!

      The important thing to remember here is that rich people have NOTHING against poor people. If it weren't for the fact that poor people don't have any money, they could be enjoying the very same privileges that rich people enjoy.

      And that's how we conservatives REALLY feel about the subject. Fuck Y'all!
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by elrous0 (869638) *
        Exactly. The difference between the Bush twins and any old white trash chicks is that the Bush twins are on the stripper poll BY CHOICE.

        Maybe if some more white trash chicks would spend some of those dollar bills on Texas oil investments instead of wasting it all on baby formula, they would get ahead too!

    • Re:Excellent (Score:5, Interesting)

      by HardCase (14757) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:57PM (#19611151)
      The first comment to the blog entry pretty much torpedoes the whole idea:


      You might want to check out section 1008 of the Audio Home Recording Act :

      No action may be brought under this title alleging infringement of copyright based on the manufacture, importation, or distribution of a digital audio recording device, a digital audio recording medium, an analog recording device, or an analog recording medium, or based on the noncommercial use by a consumer of such a device or medium for making digital musical recordings or analog musical recordings.


      Sounds to me like that's the "mix tape exception" to copyright law.
      • Re:Excellent (Score:5, Informative)

        by Score Whore (32328) on Friday June 22, 2007 @02:11PM (#19611355)
        Yep. You are exactly right. Except you can't distribute your mix tape under that.
      • Re:Excellent (Score:5, Informative)

        by gruntled (107194) on Friday June 22, 2007 @02:17PM (#19611447)
        An excellent point. Which is why the RIAA doesn't actually litigate against people for *making copies*, which is protected behavior. Unprotected behavior includes *distributing* those copies. In a general sense, in the United States at least, distributing five or fewer copies of a song is protected by such things as (ta-da!) the Audio Home Recording Act. Massive distribution -- the sort of thing you might be involved in if your P2P client were configured to, say, allow the entire universe of other users to grab a copy of the song stored on your hard drive -- exposes you to legal action. To repeat: to the best of my knowledge, every RIAA action has alleged illegal *distribution*, not illegal *copying.* So while this is amusing, it's not exactly exposing the RIAA as hypocrites, since the act of handing a single copied CD is clearly protected behavior...
      • Maybe... (Score:5, Informative)

        by msauve (701917) on Friday June 22, 2007 @02:26PM (#19611579)
        "digital audio recording medium," as defined by the act, only refers to _audio_ CD-Rs. These are special recordable CDs made to work in audio CD recorders, which will not record onto standard data CD-Rs (audio CD-Rs will also work in standard computer CD-R drives).

        These audio CD-Rs are a bit harder to find, and a bit more expensive than standard data CD-Rs, because you indirectly pay a tax on them to the recording industry (it's collected at the wholesale level).

        So, the Bush twins _might_ not be subject to copyright prosecution. OTOH, they do have GW's genes, so they're likely too stupid to know all of that, and probably used data CD-Rs, opening themselves up to prosecution.
    • by ROMRIX (912502)
      There has to be an infringement to investigate first. Fortunately (for the Bushes) there was none.
      Read section 1008 of the "AUDIO HOME RECORDING ACT" Here; (pdf file) [ipmall.info]

      " No action may be brought under this title , or under section 337 of the Tariff Act of 1930, alleging infringement of copyright based on the manufacture , importation, or distribution of a digital audio recording device, a digital audio recording medium , an analogue recording device, or an analogue recording medium, or based on the no

  • by danbert8 (1024253)
    Nothing to see here AND two of the three links are dead... Fastest I've ever seen the US government react.
  • I'm all for it (Score:2, Interesting)

    by drinkypoo (153816)

    As you know, whichever of your member organizations that are right[s]-holders for the copied musical works may be entitled to statutory damages of $150,000.00 per musical work copied.'"

    After that, let's go for what's-his-sellout-bitch-ass from Metallica who admitted in an interview in the 90s making a mix take for a friend in the 80s. After the whole "napster bad" incident I lost what little respect I had for them after the black album, and would love to see them burn for their overall hypocrisy.

    FIRE BAD!

    • by Kokuyo (549451)
      Does that mean you don't like them for the Black Album or for everything they produced afterwards?

      While I seriously like their music I feel about the same amount of sympathy towards them as you do.
    • Re:I'm all for it (Score:4, Interesting)

      by turgid (580780) on Friday June 22, 2007 @02:00PM (#19611201) Journal

      After that, let's go for what's-his-sellout-bitch-ass from Metallica who admitted in an interview in the 90s making a mix take for a friend in the 80s.

      Now, I think Lars is a monkey as much as the next man, and that his band is a sell-out Country and Western outfit, but to be fair to him, he has made amends for his previous stance on the issue. Mrs. Turgid dragged me along to see the Some Kind of Monster film, and Lars quite clearly is ashamed of and sorry for the Napster thing.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by drinkypoo (153816)

        Now, I think Lars is a monkey as much as the next man, and that his band is a sell-out Country and Western outfit, but to be fair to him, he has made amends for his previous stance on the issue.

        "Fair" would be to get into the eye of the media again, tell us who told them to say that shit, and retract it, since it's obvious hypocrisy.

        "Fair" would be to determine their percentage contribution to the RIAA's FUD, and for them to pay that percentage of the awards won by the RIAA against people who should never

  • WTF? Blog pulled already??

    [Searching for tinfoil, a wire hanger and some crazy glue (or duct tape)]

  • now the politians can start to see this "Richards" for what they are
  • by itlurksbeneath (952654) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:25PM (#19610623) Journal
    1.8 million dollars in damages for a 18 dollar CD? Methinks the lawyers calculators have too many places on the left side of the decimal place.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      $1.8M in potential damages
      $150k/song

      That comes out to 12 songs. Sounds about right (mathematically speaking, that is.....).
    • This is a political statement. A sort of motivated joke.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by OrangeTide (124937)
      1.8million dollars is apparently how much money the RIAA loses when you pirate a CD. I'm guessing they only catch 1 in 100,000 people, so the one chump has to make up for those 99,999 other people. or at least that seems like how the math is supposed to play out, of course it's insane.
    • No, that's 12 tracks at RIAA's going rate of $150,000. Methinks that RIAA has a decimal place on the left side of their collective IQ.
  • The two blog posts are missing in action, and the first linked story just mentions 'a cd was made for him to exercise to' making no claim that the songs were even copyrighted, or that if they were there was no permission to copy them. Also, when twins do something, who takes the blame for it? Do they have to split the $1.8M fine? So many unanswered questions...
  • This is like a while back President Bush said he had the Beatles on his iPod, when there was no legal way to get them on there. Sure, It's funny, but thats this isn't gonna change anyone's minds and there is no way the RIAA is gonna after him. Policians and celebrities don't have to play by the same rules as you and I, whats new?
  • The blog postings seem to be missing, and I can't figure out how he reached a number as low as $1.8 million. If we assume an average of 5 minutes per song, and an 80 minute CDR, that comes to 16 tracks, which at $150,000/track comes to $2.4 million.
  • by mytrip (940886) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:30PM (#19610711) Homepage Journal
    Oh my. This is hillarious. Get them off to dubai with the haliburton execs to avoid prosecution.
  • by JeanBaptiste (537955) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:32PM (#19610755)
    who in the hell do you pull for in this one?
  • I didn't RTFA, but what if it wasn't a regular CD? What if it was an MP3 CD? Imagine what the "Damages" would be then! If they could cram 1500 songs on a CD, it would be $225,000,000.00 in damages! Seems fair to me....

  • by cashman73 (855518) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:34PM (#19610785) Journal
    If there ever was a slashdot story/thread that would make the RIAA look like the, "good guys," ... yup, them going after President Bush,... that would do it! :-)
  • I'm sure the RIAA doesn't have any major problems with Mix-tapes, and have usually tolerated peopel giving these away. It's indiscriminate sharing of large numbers of files on P2P networks they sue over and the Bush Twins haven't been doing that.
  • by Bearhouse (1034238) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:35PM (#19610799)
    The lawyer in question was found to be 'unreachable', although he did leave a forwarding address....in Cuba.

  • by madsheep (984404) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:41PM (#19610867) Homepage
    So these are the daughter's of the president and their gift to him is a home made mix CD? Looks like someone forgot about Father's Day and had to think fast! In any event, while most the links are dead, how do we even know what was on the CD? Who said the music on it was actually copyrighted?
  • Presidential Pardon
  • by ajenteks (943860) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:46PM (#19610967)
    Burning a mix CD? For a Father's Day gift? Isn't that the college equivalent to macaroni art!?
  • but these poor women have had poor parenting. these teenaged girls have had poor parental guidance and roll models. it's easy for YOU who have had parents that imbued you with some intelligence, a sense of decency... would you laugh so hard if YOUR dad was GW Bush? i don't think so
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Khaed (544779)
      psst, the Bush twins are like, 26. That's only "teenage" on a porn site.
  • Yeah... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Nom du Keyboard (633989) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:47PM (#19610987)
    Yeah, like that's going to ever happen.

    Maybe they'll be let off, like that record exec's son, with a stern talking to by their daddy. Any other person sued by the RIAA that wants to take that option too?

  • by WaxParadigm (311909) on Friday June 22, 2007 @01:49PM (#19611009)
    It's a non-issue if they used a "Digital Audio Recording Device" [wikipedia.org] and the CD-R was a "Digital Audio Recording Medium." I have such a device and use the slightly-more-expensive "music" CD-Rs when I make CDs for friends/family/myself (i.e. to have copy in car). I am exempt from infringement actions (I can't be prosecuted/sued for copyright infringement) for such activities. If they, like me, acted within the Home Audio Recording Act there is no story here...just FUD.
  • Dear RIAA, (Score:3, Funny)

    by Trailer Trash (60756) on Friday June 22, 2007 @02:01PM (#19611207) Homepage
    "I forgot to mention in my last letter that this "George Bush" is a single paraplegic grandmother who is raising her own grandkids with her social security checks."

    There, *now* they'll be interested in pursuing this one.
  • by Torodung (31985) on Friday June 22, 2007 @04:16PM (#19613169) Journal
    Here's the original, for as long as it stays up.

    Yahoo's cache of retracted blog entry. [216.109.125.130]
  • Mccarthyism (Score:5, Interesting)

    by TinBromide (921574) on Friday June 22, 2007 @04:33PM (#19613397)
    mccarthyism and the early salem witch trials ended when high profile people (read: close to the heart of those doing the prosecutions) were targeted as communists or witches. Hit the president's daughter and senators feel that they might be next and enact laws to save us all.
  • by one2meny (875548) on Friday June 22, 2007 @05:23PM (#19614101) Journal
    I wish the RIAA would go forward and try to litigate the President's daughters. All of a sudden the President's attention would be very quickly and precisely to act against any current and future RIAA litigation by basically saying, you're a bullying group with no legal authority don't do this type of thing again or be disbanded. If only...

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