Remember, record labels are venture capitalists, not patrons.
Pro-Piracy website TorrentFreak describes UMG's campaign to shut down the website MegaUpload:
MegaUpload is currently being portrayed by the MPAA and RIAA as one of the world’s leading rogue sites. But top music stars including P Diddy, Will.i.am, Alicia Keys, Snoop Dogg and Kanye West disagree and are giving the site their full support in a brand new song.It's almost as if the artists and labels have different interests, gasp!
Here's the video in question:
Block This from TorrentFreak on Vimeo.
UMG forced YouTube to take down the video. No surprises there.
But wait, there's more!
The video is legally owned by MegaUpload as part of a marketing campaign.
Wait, so Universal can shut down videos simply because it doesn't like the message? I thought copyright-infringement laws were put into place to help me as an artists?
Would it ruffle your feathers if a major label tried stealing royalties from an independent artist? Does it surprise you that the same people who wrote the SOPA act are entertainment lobbyists? Are you shocked that the head of the MPAA used the great firewall of China as a shining example for a way to help artists? (Ai Weiwei would disagree.)
It was never about protecting artists. It's about labels defending their competitive advantage through any means necessary, legal and otherwise.
When an argument rests heavily on an emotional appeal, be very certain you understand who actually benefits from the agreement.
UPDATE:Megaupload sued UMG. UMG reveals that it has an agreement with YouTube that it can issue takedown notices for ANY video without any proof of ownership.
The video is back on YouTube.