Dear Readers: Please steal

By Kris Kotarski

“An eye for an eye” sends essentially the same massage as “Do onto others as they do onto you.” The former is not as politically correct as the latter, but both nevertheless say: Treat others as they treat you.

On that note, if you have blank CDs, then start stealing music. Copy everything you can from friends and enemies. Fill your hard drives to the brim with MP3s and gorge yourselves on remix upon remix. Make copies for everyone you know; mail them to relatives if you have access to a post box.

Why this orgy of copyright infringement? Because you may as well fleece the recording industry when they’re fleecing you.

Earlier this year, Canada’s Copy-right Board Commission announced a new levy that will become effective January 1, 2003. It applies to all blank audio recording media and it means blank CDs will cost more regardless of what you use them for. If you already steal music, you have to pay more for your CDs. If you don’t steal music, you may as well start.

Screw the conniving bastards. If you buy blank CDs for “legitimate” reasons, use them to burn MP3s instead. The recording industry convinced the government that you’re guilty of stealing by purchasing a blank CD, so you may as well make it true.

Now as you may or may not know, blank audio tapes have been taxed this way for years. But blank audio tapes have one main purpose. The only groups who can legitimately grumble about a tape levy are journalists and stenographers. CDs, however, are a

different animal. The primary use for blank CDs is data storage, whether that be business data or personal photos. It is true that many people burn music CDs, but those who don’t should not be punished for other people’s transgressions.

This “levy” is a tax.

But aren’t taxes supposed to benefit society on the whole? Health care, education and national defence are all legitimate reasons to tax a population but this levy benefits the recording industry and no one else.

“An eye for an eye” may sound somewhat barbaric, but in this case, it is certainly called for. Since you’re guilty the moment you buy a CD, at least get some free music in return.

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