We all know how exciting it is to see a classic hit like “Don’t Stop Believin” by Journey pop up on a list of stealable downloads, saying it will only take 20 seconds until that baby is yours to keep forever. You say, “Dude. I have to download that. I don’t care if I’m stealing. It’s JOURNEY for gosh sakes.”
Tempting, I know.
And even though the government has been warning us to stop illegally downloading music, ever since the beginning days of Napster, we continue to do it anyway. We are such badasses.
Recently, however, there’s been an even bigger crackdown, and it’s college kids they’re after. With the rise of the Recording Industry Association of America, emails have been sent to hundreds of college students across the country and counting, warning them they have been caught in the act and if they don’t settle their cases out of court, they will be fined more money than college kids can afford.
MSN.com reports the case of University of Nebraska-Lincoln sophomore Sarah Barg, who received an email advising her of the fact she was caught downloading over 300 songs (some of which included songs by the Spice Girls – AWESOME!) on a campus computer using Ares – a site much like Kazaa, Limewire and Bearshare. At first, she brushed off the email, as we all probably would. Some one who downloads the Spice Girls doesn’t exactly scream “evil threat to society” to me.
But the RIAA doesn’t care which songs you download. The email was for real, and more than 500 other college students have had to pay $3000 to the RIAA. And Barg, being a broke college kid, had to get her parents to pay instead, which they probably were not too pleased about.
So, illegal downloaders, beware! 32 more letters are on their way – it’s up to you if this idea intimidates you enough to stop downloading for once and for all. Just don’t do it on a campus computer; that’s asking for it.
It’s completely unfair that this group is targeting college students, being that we are so extremely poor that we are forced to eat ramen noodles and drink Natty Lights every night of the week, but who better for the RIAA to take advantage of than us? Of course they’re going to get every cent of their money, since there’s no chance in hell we could ever fight back in court.
But on the other hand, I don’t really feel bad for Sarah Barg. Being fined $3000 for wanting to listen to the Spice Girls sounds pretty fair to me.