“Punishing people for listening to music is exactly the wrong way to protect the music business.”


Marx “Ashamed” to Be Connected to $1.92 Million Fine Against File-Swapper
You wouldn’t expect to find Richard Marx and Moby together on stage, but the two veteran artists are singing the same tune—let's call it a protest song—in condemnation of last week’s $1.92 million ruling against Jammie Thomas-Rasset for illegally downloading 24 songs. Marx—one of the acts whose music Thomas-Rasset downloaded via Kazaa—says he’s “ashamed” to be associated with the judgment.

“As a longtime professional songwriter, I have always objected to the practice of illegal downloading of music,” Marx said in a statement. “I have also always, however, been sympathetic to the average music fan, who has been consistently financially abused by the greedy actions of major labels, These labels, until recently, were responsible for the distribution of the majority of recorded music, and instead of nurturing the industry and doing their best to provide the highest quality of music to the fans, they predominantly chose to ream the consumer and fill their pockets.

“So now,” he continues, “we have a ‘judgment’ in a case of illegal downloading, and it seems to me, especially in these extremely volatile economic times, that holding Ms. Thomas-Rasset accountable for the continuing daily actions of hundreds of thousands of people is, at best, misguided and at worst, farcical. Her accountability itself is not in question, but this show of force posing as judicial come-uppance is clearly abusive. Ms. Thomas Rasset, I think you got a raw deal, and I’m ashamed to have my name associated with this issue.”

Said Moby, writing on his site: “What utter nonsense. This is how the record companies want to protect themselves? Suing suburban moms for listening to music? Charging $80,000 per song? Punishing people for listening to music is exactly the wrong way to protect the music business. I’m so sorry that any music fan anywhere is ever made to feel bad for making the effort to listen to music. The RIAA needs to be disbanded.”