The RIAA and all their cretinous associates started sending people letters and emails claiming they'd sue them for pirating music...unless of course they agreed to pay a small settlement fee online. Basically, they decided if they weren't going to make money distributing CDs, they'd make money distributing vague anxiety.
Those spineless enough to knuckle under helped line the pockets of some bald douche with a ponytail, and the others got away, because there's no way they have time to sue everyone who pirates music (ie, "everyone").
Well, at least one of the lawyers cum spammers they had sending out the notices has gotten a comeuppance, in the form of a six month suspension and censure form the Frech Bar Association. Admittedly, not the death by hanging the offense deserves, but at least we're moving in the right direction.
Look, people who hate piracy: there's a lot more of us, and a lot less of you. In fact, most of you ARE us, you hypocrites, and pretty soon there will be enough people pirating music that the term "piracy" will finally be changed to "listening to music." It will be the standard.
It's inevitable, and you need to look at ways to capitalize on that trend rather than fighting it, or you can kiss your candy canes and licorice goodbye (Naturally, I'm imagining record executives spend their money on what I would buy if I were rich).
We have destroyed (or at least mildly inconvenienced) one of you. More shall fall. Cue maniacal laughter.
When not blogging for Cracked, Michael offers content for free download as head writer and co-founder of Those Aren't Muskets!