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There has been plenty of good news coming out of both houses of Congress recently, so this might surprise you and if you care about consumer's fair use rights then you'll want to take action and call your senators on this one.

Ars Technica has a good piece on it, and an bipartisan coalition of Senators is introducing a bill called the Platform Equality and Remedies for Rights Holders in Music Act (PERFORM).

A new bill introduced in the US Senate this week would force satellite, digital, and Internet radio providers (but not over-the-air radio) to implement measures designed to restrict the ability of listeners to record audio from the services. Called the "Platform Equality and Remedies for Rights Holders in Music Act" (PERFORM), the bill is sponsored by Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Joseph Biden (D-DE), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), and Lindsey Graham (R-SC).

Yes thats right, two Democratic Senators are behind this as well Joseph Biden (D-DE) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) (links go to their contact pages).

Who is behind this?  The RIAA of course.  It was originally introduced in April of 2006 but it died in committee.

Here's what it does according to the Ars Technica article:

Like its predecessor, the new legislation would require content protection on all satellite radio broadcasts along with cable and Internet broadcasts. Broadcasters would be required to "use reasonably available and economically reasonable technology to prevent music theft." But that's not bad for consumers, says Sen. Feinstein, who tells us that "consumers' current recording habits" will not be inhibited as they will still be allowed to record by time period or station. However, they would be prevented from automatically cherry-picking all the Shakira songs from the services.

The bill would also get the government into the business of price controls, with content providers required to pay a predetermined "fair market value" for the use of the music libraries. If another company decides to enter the unprofitable satellite radio market in the future, it too, would be forced to pay the same rates as XM Radio and Sirius.

Ironically this comes at the same time that an endangered GOP Senator, John Sununu, is proposing something to permanently remove the "broadcast flag" from play which is the right side of the issue in my opinion.  Here's an article on his legislation.

So please do contact Joseph Biden (D-DE) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and let them know this isn't the kind of legislation you support and that a Democratic majority should not be caving in to the desires of the RIAA.

Originally posted to terminal3 on Fri Jan 12, 2007 at 03:03 PM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Give 'em a piece of your mind. (12+ / 0-)

    Pre-order unConventional, the official photo documentary of YearlyKos 2006!

    by Raven Brooks on Fri Jan 12, 2007 at 02:59:56 PM PST

  •  Good God! Oh HOW loathsome is Biden! (6+ / 0-)

    The others, too.  Of course.


    We're working on many levels here. Ken Kesey

    by BenGoshi on Fri Jan 12, 2007 at 03:06:14 PM PST

  •  Your Senate hard at work (5+ / 0-)

    Thanks for posting this. I saw the news too at Arstechnica and Slashdot. Feinstein has always been "pro-business" and sides with the studios. No surprise there.

  •  A good opportunity... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmo, highacidity, Valahan

    I see this as a good opportunity to show this new Democratic majority that we won't tolerate caving to large lobbies like the RIAA directly against the will of voters and consumers.

    Pre-order unConventional, the official photo documentary of YearlyKos 2006!

    by Raven Brooks on Fri Jan 12, 2007 at 03:17:29 PM PST

    •  A lot more dems are behind it (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      and they're not "caving", they actually believe this shit.  And it's not too hard to understand.  You know how the oil business funds Republicans?  It's the same way with Democrats except instead of oil companies it's Hollywood and the MPAA.  Fritz Hollings wasn't called the Senator from Disney for nothing.

      I'm totally boycotting RIAA and MPAA products and I don't see any way we can maintain our rights to communicate with each other unless we get rid of that scourge.  Dems need to stop this crap.

  •  Thank you (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    terminal3, AuntieM

    Biden and Feinstein, One of the years we won't have whores like this in our party.

  •  Poison pill? (4+ / 0-)

    Can we get a senator to add an amendment prohibiting RIAA's frivolous lawsuits? A poison pill amendment to stop their thuggish behavior.  

    A realist believes in one less god. Get off your knees get real and relax.

    by AuntieM on Fri Jan 12, 2007 at 03:27:19 PM PST

  •  Biden/Feinstein... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    terminal3, esquimaux

    Corporate laminate sockpuppets.

    "We're all working for the Pharoah" - Richard Thompson

    by mayan on Fri Jan 12, 2007 at 03:28:53 PM PST

  •  I can do any damn thing... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    terminal3, kafkananda

    with my music I want to. Somebody wrote a great slam dairy about Bush, I sent him a C.D. Good writing deserves rewards and encouragement.

    •  Huh? I hope it wasn't an RIAA CD (0+ / 0-)

      if you burned a CD-R from a download, then that's different, and great.  And there's a lot of excellent free music at among other places.

      •  In my rant I forgot to mention.. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I'm the artist and producer of the C.D. I sent. I didn't mean to sound irate at you.
        Just a pet peeve of mine; I don't like the government trying to tell me what I can & can't do with my music. Write a good "Bush letter," and I'll send you one, too!

  •  Bipartisan - this word is trouble (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    terminal3, willb48

    Dianne Feinstein and Joe Biden, this is not good. I just got out of the Media Reform sessions for today, they would love to know about this there.

    If we want to keep the net free call you reps on this, music is just one part they want to cut off.

    Hands off the internet!

  •  I am glad to see this diary (0+ / 0-)

    So I don't have to write one.

    But I wonder how many kossacks even understand what the issue is and how far reaching what the Dems and Repubs owned by the recording industry really are trying to do.

    Fair use and personal use or more simply, paying for music ONE time and using it where and how you like is what is at risk.

    The riaa wants us to pay for music (or anything else that is recorded sound) EACH TIME it is listened to.

    This bill would force Internet radio, pod-casts and pretty much any other content to offshore servers (or to the services owned by Disney, apple, and Sony) as well as try to add DRM to to all hardware.

    No the details are not worked out yet but without input from all our Senators and Reps during the formative stage of this bill, the thing could slip through.

    Remember most of our congresscritters still get their email printed out so they can read it. Never assume they understand even the smallest fraction of a bill they are sponsoring.

    Feinstein and Biden are probably not reachable since they are owned by the corporations that benefit from this bill, but all other senators and reps, especially those on the committees it must pass through, need to be contacted at the appropriate time.

    Also note more details from EFF from the last time this crap was attempted.

    The biggest threat to America is not communism, it's moving America toward a fascist theocracy... -- Frank Zappa

    by NCrefugee on Sat Jan 13, 2007 at 02:38:00 PM PST

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