The RIAA isn’t having much luck these days suing music owners in order to pad the music industry’s bottom line. In fact, they’re gonna get dragged into court in a counter-suit where their questionable tactics are going to be submitted to the discovery process. (Oh how delicious it would be to be in that conference room!)
But the ever inventive industry has now got another proposal for getting their hand in your pocket…even if you’re not part of the 1 in 10 who pirates music from online sources. Yes, the culture vultures are flogging the idea that a tax should be levied on all broadband connections—$5.00 per user, per month—to compensate…[ahem]…the artists for lost revenue due to pirating.
Got that? $60/year (perhaps multiplied by every member in your household) multiplied by all 45 million broadband connections in the US—a whopping $2.7 Billion! Now isn’t that a tidy sum to compensate an industry that 1) can’t figure out how to make money and 2) can’t even claim to loose more than $150M per year due to pirating?
But the real danger isn’t just in the RIAA’s ludicrous proposal. Imagine what will happen if other industries realize that they can just invent taxes that compensate them for lost business?
Big Auto will push for bikers, walkers—literally anybody who refuses to drive and especially those who refuse to own cars—to pay a ‘transport tax’ to compensate them for cars they can’t sell.
Big Coal will lobby for a ‘green tax’ that compensates them for revenue lost due to consumers switching to green power generation, buying energy efficient appliances, and turning off lights. Reduce your electricity consumption by 20%, and BANG! the tax kicks in.
The Incarceration Industrial Complex will get to ‘penalize’ states that back away from draconian sentencing laws in favor of rehabilitation and parole.
After all, nobody should have to adapt their business model to changing times, attitudes, or technologies. Should they?