Metallica can no longer be considered artists. They are surpassed in the Unethical Olympics only by the likes of Bill Gates.

"It is therefore sickening to know that our art is being traded like a commodity rather than the art that it is."

What the hell? This comment is completely irrational. Metallica would have us believe that cd's are not a commodity. A real artist would want their art to be appreciated by as many people as possible. Fine, they want to make money. There's nothing wrong with that, even though they have no need whatsoever for it. There are these things we call concerts.

Now, do we remember how Metallica started? Tape trading. That's right, the mp3s of the 80s.

Fucking hypocrites
Metallica owns those songs, they belong to Metallica, and they are fully in the right if they want to keep it that way. From what I understand of the situation there were people sending out parts of songs that Metallica hadn't even finished at the time. Now, I'm only a marginally put-together writer, but if someone sent out versions of a story I hadn't even finished - even if it was to people who enjoy my writing, I would be pissed.

Shadow, I think your idea of art is off. As an artist would want my work to be appreciated by as many people as possible - but I would want it to be mine. Maybe that's protozoan of me to think that way, but if I spent 40 hours to make a painting and then you photocopied it and gave it to anyone who wanted it, I would not be pleased. It would no longer be mine. When people see the art hung up or buy a print for themselves, they are giving me my due for creating the art, in essence they are paying me for work that I've done, just like any other working man. And finally, they are acknowledging that it is mine. Regardless of how much Metallica's made, their music is still as much theirs as this computer is mine.

And on the subject of corporate whores - that is what we all are. It's quite inescapable. Unless you buy your clothes from the neighborhood seamstress and drink out of a well, well then you're a whore as well. All these people who don't understand their own actions criticizing Metallica's are a little like Pol Pot calling the kettle black.

For the most part, I agree with Trevor. They made the art, therefore they sign the rights over to their label to collect money. Oops, meant they get paid.

The one thing I have a problem with is this:

Metallica made their name from the rabid fans. They were outcasts in the corporate music business, preferring to go it alone and get their stuff heard. They were made by word of mouth and people trading their music, especially bootlegs. People heard it, liked it, then bought it.

Fast forward to present: The 'heard it, liked it, bought it' routine now is against their ideals. If they used this technique to get famous, why is it now a bad thing? The other folks who are suing Napster I have no problems with. That's their perogative.

What needs to be remembered here is that they're doing nothing more than shilling for their corporate masters, and the RIAA. This is the same organization that several years ago tried to get used CD stores illegalized, because they weren't getting a cut of the sales of "their" copyrighted material. The courts told them they were smoking crack, that someont had already paid them all they were entitled to when the CDs were first purchased, and therefore, they had no right to any share of the revenues of Used CD stores, in the sale way the automobile manufacturers had no right to any share of the proceeds of used car sales.

My big problem with the mp3 controversy is exactly the same. For the most part (though not always), the music available on the internet as mp3s has been ripped from CDs that were legitimately purchased by someone, so the band has already been paid for them. Anything more is simple greed.

The bands that are against mp3s seem to mostly be already established, but the mp3 format is a boon to the unknown or little known bands. I recently downloaded a song called Flesh by Avrigus. I'd never heard of the band before, and in the description of the song I read before downloading it told me that it sounded like a cross between Enya and Metallica. I had to give it a try, and now, having heard this one song, I'm hunting around trying to find the CD to buy. If it weren't for mp3s, I never would have heard of this band, and that's one less sale they would've made.

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