Tuesday, May 06, 2008

MediaSentry now a "contractor" instead of an "investigator"?

We've noticed that the RIAA now refers to MediaSentry as a "contractor" or a "vendor", no longer referring to it as an "investigator". See this article.

[Ed. note. Wonder why that would be. - R.B.]

Keywords: digital copyright law online internet law legal download upload peer to peer p2p file sharing filesharing music movies indie independent label freeculture creative commons pop/rock artists riaa independent mp3 cd favorite songs intellectual property


Anonymous said...

So does MS contract their investigative services now? Or do they vend investigative services? Walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, or maybe a rose by any other name, and all that other Shakespeare stuff...

Does bring up one interesting question. Does that fraudulent Carlos Linnares now have to amend his equally fraudulent Declaration where it might refer to investigators and/or investigations?

Also, have the RIAA lawyers just estoppled themselves by changing their story?


Scott said...

The Journal of Higher Ed article links to an even more interesting article, "Downloading by Students Overstated", in which it is said that the MPAA's estimates of college campus downloading, which it presented to Congress, were overstated by a factor of three. It wouldn't surprise me if it were found that the RIAA's representations to Congress were lies also.

I for one would like to find electronic transcripts of the RIAA's public testimony so that it could be posted on the internet and meticulously vetted. The RIAA is a peddler of big lies, and that requires a big response.

Anonymous said...

Sherman attributed the “phenomenal jump” in the number of complaints to a “major change in the software and hardware” its major vendor uses to detect online infringement.
Of course, we can all assume that this major change is still using standard, off the shelf software & hardware, so there's no reason to question the legitimacy of the method.


Anonymous said...

I wonder if they consider Universities a softer target than individuals.


John said...

They must be getting tired of the complaints. I wonder what doublespeak they'll use after this.

Anonymous said...

Not a lawyer but... if they are a "contractor," wouldn't this suggest that they are not actually acting an agent of the RIAA, but an independent entity? If so, how can the RIAA have personal knowledge as to the methods used by MediaSentry? If they are a mere contractor, one would think that the contracts between MediaSentry and the RIAA, and the testimony of MediaSentry personnel, would be fairly important evidence to show what exactly they do.

Jadeic said...

One for Alter_Fritz here.

I am reminded, in an altogether different context, of Heinrich Böll's the excellent short story Dr. Murkes gesammeltes Schweigen / Dr Murkes' Collected Silences. What should now happen is that the RIAA should be required to reissue every one of their court documents produced to date substituting for all references to MediaSentry as 'investigator' or 'investigation' or 'investigative' etc. (you get the picture) with appropriate phrasal variations on 'our contractor MediaSentry, formally erroneously referred to as an investigator'. However, following the logic of Böll's story all the documents must be then be further edited to ensure that they remain the same length by removing any redundant spaces. These blank spaces are then collected together in one large document and made available to one and all via the P2P network of your choice. It would make interesting reading as it would just about sum up the content and substance of the RIAA argument.


Alter_Fritz said...


"MediaSentry, the higher supernatural power we praise"- something like that maybe? ;-)

While the original Story is based in a context of voice via airways
(caution: Radio = FM/AM nicht radio! like my old Langenscheid german/english school dict back then noted)
make them to use this kind of "newspeak" for investigator in redacted documents seems interesting..

Comand "to become" Judge RIAA-Rich to do that work as a last task before he is out of it.

P.S. you saw the film or did you had to read the short story in school back then?


Alter_Fritz said...

sorry, the "correct" translation would have been
""O Thou higher Being Whom we revere""

shame on my rudimentary english knowledge ;-)

Jadeic said...


Fear not your English is super-fine: far better than my German at any rate.

In answer to your question I first read this story at high school over forty years ago and did not know there was a ilm version. I was reading a lot of Böll, Grass and Hesse back then but Dr Murke has always resonated the most as the almost perfect short story. I just knew that one day I would be able to draw on it for inspiration.


Alter_Fritz said...

Murke's first page on google book search for those that did not read it in highschool or want to refresh their memories.
Btw. that's where I "stole" the .png from the prior link too. Mea Culpa! Where do I have to send the $750 to?

Rick Boatright said...

Ray, you DID notice the quote in this article that Sherman scoffed at that notion. “We have been asking the contractor for years to increase the computing power of its effort, and to search more to detect infringement,” he said Monday. “We’ve had a standing request to maximize efficiency for what they do for us.... We didn’t even know they were putting a new system online.”

This suggests that the "Linaes declaration" that they know exactly what and how MediaSentry is doing their searches for copyright violations is uh errr, "less than totally correct."