If you happen to receive a letter today from something called the IFPI, it may be best to stick it under your Harry And David catalogs and pretend you never saw it. That’s because the delightfully anachronistic-sounding International Federation of the Phonographic Industry whipped up 8,000 more file-sharing lawsuits yesterday:
…the new cases were brought in 17 countries, including the first ones ever in Brazil, Mexico and Poland. The trade group said more than 1 billion music tracks were illegally downloaded last year in Brazil, the largest market in Latin America.
More than half of those one billion Brazilian downloads, of course, are protected under the country’s R.U.M.P. statutes, which federally protects any songs related to or encouraging ass-shaking. Anyway, yesterday’s crackdown brings the total number of file-sharing lawsuits to 31,000 worldwide–with a mere 2,300 having been settled out of court. And considering that the latest cases once again go after small-potatoes perpetrators (a Finnish lab assistant and a German parsons were among those targeted), it’s unlikely the IFPI is ever going to recoup any money from these heavy-handed procedures. Guys, isn’t there some other, more dignified way to goose your fourth-quarter profits? Like, say, selling bootleg mixtapes down on Canal Street?