OiNKgate, Day One: The Final Wrap-Up

Oct 23rd, 2007 // 20 Comments

tencommandments.jpgOkay, you little bastards, especially the ones leaving comments all over the site about how we somehow brought the authorities to your little digital bootlegging ring. (It’s not as if anyone in a position of power in the music industry had anything to do with spreading the word about OiNK.) You stole. And it’s okay! We all do it. In the interest of full disclosure, I will now inform any RIAA lawyers reading this that I have been known to use Napster, Audiogalaxy, and Soulseek at various points in my life. Come and get me! But all of you OiNK goofs need to cease your pathetic justifications and “moralist” handwringing* at once!

Especially those of you who may have paid a donation to steal. Forget prosecution, you should be lucky you’re not being tarred and feathered or thrown in the stockade for being that stupid. And hey, you can calm down because your ringleader has been released from jail, even though his dumb ass is probably going back there for a long time. (Also hilarious: “It is highly doubtful that the IFPI or BPI will go after [all OiNK users], or even one of them.” Sleep with one eye open, chumps.) The gross entitlement and embarassing lack of perspective displayed in the OiNK “fallout” makes me long for a tactical Iranian nuclear strike or a killer comet more than ever.

* From that in-defense of OiNK rant, regarding how “the new model” should make money: “Touring and merch trumps album sales.” It does, huh? Tell that to your writer who wouldn’t shell out eight measly bucks for a show by one of his “favorite” artists. Surely your proclamation will inspire him to actually pay for a concert by a band he likes, instead of sucking up via blog for a guest-list spot.

  1. bnb614

    People really paid to use Oink? I thought you just had to keep your upload to download ratio at a certain level?

    Glad I never used the site. Anyone who used Oink who has ever uttered the words “support independent music” should get extra tar and extra feathers.

  2. bnb614

    People actually paid to use the site? I thought you just had to keep your upload to download ratio at a certain rate?

    Glad I never used the site. Anyone who used Oink and has ever uttered the words “support independent music” should receive extra tar and extra feathers.

  3. Maura Johnston

    @bnb614: you could donate, yes.

  4. Vince Neilstein

    Jess, your coverage of this news all day long has been stellar and hilarious. Bravo!

  5. 30f

    Next up, Oink users call cops to complain that room-mate smoked up all their weed.

  6. Teh Faint

    I don ‘t understand people’s sense of entitlement to “free” stolen music.
    Why the big shock horror reaction to the head dude getting busted?

  7. Tippy and Bad Girl

    Yeah, coverage has been great today– dare I say b.o.w. even!

    That’s what made that little bit of vitriol here kinda weird, esp. for someone who has used p2p in the past. Not an OiNK user here, but the people who I’ve known that use OiNK and ended up donating showed a little more positivity in the gesture than people who 1) uploaded well, 2) uploaded badly, or 3) went DL bonkers and got kicked off after a few weeks. If the problem was that they were donating to OiNK instead of using that $10 to go to 1/2 of a CD purchase, then I might (?) understand; just seems like a weird quibble for the amount of enmity. It just comes off like an OiNK donor stole your tricycle.

    If it’s just a reaction to the strange OiNK-brand of sanctimony about p2p stuff, then I can understand. If not, well … wtf, they were supporting something that’s service they enjoyed (no matter what iron-clad ironies might be wrapped up in that sentiment).

  8. sparkletone

    Okay, okay. I take it all back. Clearly this shit needs to stop.

  9. Anonymous

    there may be a gigantic (pink?) elephant in this tiny room. where exactly did your “leak of the day” albums originate?

  10. Christopher R. Weingarten

    We are truly the worst generation

  11. mike a

    I’m with Jess: it’s not as if I haven’t downloaded tracks for free either, but I make a point of avoiding those methods that are completely traceable, e.g. P2P and BitTorrent. It’s pretty much common knowledge that you’re taking your chances with either method. Don’t do the crime, etc.

  12. Felonious Monk

    I think I’ve got it:

    You take a system like OiNK, huge library, high quality, well moderated. You charge people by bandwidth – the more you pay, the faster you can download, but with no cap on the amount of music you can get. Money goes to the artists based on popularity, so the more people are sharing and listening to your music the more you get paid. Torrent infrastructure has almost no overhead costs, nothing a few ads can’t cover and voila: (almost) unlimited music for everyone, and the money goes straight from consumer to artist.

    Listeners win, artists win, corporations lose. Sounds good to me!

  13. Ned Raggett

    @FunkyJ: older Australian hiphop

    Dare I ask?

  14. Anonymous

    i think that’s tounge in cheek…

  15. FunkyJ

    I used oink, but only rarely and never paid.

    I’m not complaining that it’s closed down. I won’t even complain if I get taken to court.

    My problem with all of this is the only stuff I shared was older Australian hiphop – stuff impossible to buy in the UK or the USA. Hell, it’s near impossible to find here!

    My downloads were either vinyl rips, stuff I have on audio tape, or I simply couldn’t find in shops because they were OOP.

    When I did find those CDs or records, I bought them.

    However, most of the stuff I buy is off ebay or from secondhand music stores so again, the money doesn’t get back to artists/record companies though…

    All this has done is made me realise I need to be much smarter if I’m going to get music online ever again.

  16. Jess Harvell

    @Tippy and Bad Girl: “If it’s just a reaction to the strange OiNK-brand of sanctimony about p2p stuff, then I can understand.”

    that’s basically it, yes, coupled with me boggling at the kind of mindset that can produce near-offensive reactions (“this is as bad as the worst thing that ever happened to humanity!”) like those exhibited in the quotes maura linked to earlier in the day. the part about the donation is basically me making a small note about/having some fun with those “iron-clad ironies.” like i said, it’s not as if i’ve never used a p2p to illegally download songs, but there’s a reason i never donated to slsk either, and it wasn’t just to cover my ass in case in case the user logs ever ended up in the hands of johnny law. (from the minute the lawsuits started coming down i knew the risks of snagging that backstreet boys single or pylon song, donation or no donation.)

    “stealing” as regards illegal downloading/the barter economy/blah blah is thorny in the sense that MP3s have shuffled the definitions somewhat, and obviously it’s easier to side with the downloaders because the industry people are such unrepentent, easily hatable assholes. (telling OiNKtards to STFU shouldn’t be misconstrued as a tacit thumbs up to the RIAA.) but at some point, especially if you belong to a site where the raison d’etre is the mass trading of whole albums, especially if you donate to keep that site going, you gotta own up to yr behavior. (maybe more like pathology.) and the sanctimony and entitlement and desperate prevaricating displayed today by ex-OiNKers is definite “why they hate us” fodder.

    just swallow yr pride and own up to yr thievery! if you’re gonna use downloading as a point to argue against the ineffectual way the music industry is being run/waging war on its own consumers, then own it, because it’s the only possible way to be taken seriously. stop hiding behind half-digested post-lawrence lessig rhetoric and the idea that you’re somehow being persecuted for helping to save the music industry by exposing cool bands to as many people as possible. this comment is now probabkly longer than the actual post, so i’m gonna go drink beer now. night y’all!

  17. Catbirdseat

    @Felonious Monk: Not too bad an idea, Felonius. You know, I haven’t seen this mentioned anywhere (and I’m only about 95% sure I saw what I saw (it was a Powerpoint presentation, thru a window into the next room, at CMJ)), but I believe there’s currently a new system being implemented in the UK, called the “Playlouder Broadband ISP” — and the way that it works is that there’s a fee built into the ISP’s monthly charge that allows you to download unrestricted MP3s, in “all you can eat” style, and the label/artist gets paid out of the ISP fees. I’m not sure which labels exactly are on board, but there seemed to be a lot of them (though the only one saw for sure was 4AD).

  18. sparkletone

    I’m not quite sure where the vitriol is coming from. We’re going through the exact same cycle that was gone through with the decline and fall of Napster, only on a smaller scale (in terms of user population affected). What was apparently the best source of music on the Internet has been squashed (again).

    About the only difference here is that a larger percentage of Oink users have blogs than Napster users in 2000 or whenever, so there’s more people to whine into their WordPress installs.

  19. sparkletone

    A more concise way of saying what I mean is this: We don’t get all high and mighty when drug users are sad because their dealer’s been busted.

  20. sparkletone

    *coughs* All that said, and having finally read the comments for the post, … Yeah. The whining is tiresome.

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