Last week, the National Association of Brothers (NAB) sent a letter to the FCC with suggestions on how to combat “illegal pirate radio stations.” In it, the NAB suggests that the FCC start getting tough with “pirate operators” through increased “forfeitures and equipment seizures” which would lead to more prosecutions of pirate operators. The NAB also wants the FCC to help them raise awareness about pirate operations.
Essentially, the NAB wants the FCC to begin attacking anyone who possibly streams a radio station. The NAB also wants the ability to push off their “educational materials” onto the public. Materials that likely will be slanted and misleading. We have seen these types of actions both in the past and currently with entertainment groups wanting so-called education forced onto the public.
Just recently in the UK, the entertainment industry agreed with the government to begin issuing educational materials towards “16-24 year olds, their parents, those responsible for household internet connections, as well as others who influence young people’s attitudes to accessing content.” As TechDirt notes, doesn’t this come off much like the way that the Recording Industry Assoc of America (RIAA) tried to pass off “universally inaccurate and misleading propaganda” that didn’t connect with anyone here?
Then there is the question of….is this really a program worth spending millions on? Can we verify that this is a problem worth trying to fight? Years ago, the Business Software Alliance (aka Microsoft) put out studies that inflated the stats of software piracy. According to the BSA, software piracy was costing the economy almost $65 billion dollars! Except, it wasn’t. We have also seen the Motion Picture Association of America trying to pass off ridiculous TV ad’s in which they push for “anti-camcorder” laws to stop the rash of so-called piracy.