Ice-T on napster

Les Schaffer godzilla at
Mon Aug 7 14:19:59 MDT 2000

Ice-T on Napster and cops and robbers.

les schaffer


Ice-T's Take on Napster, the Law  and Morality

         By LAURA M. HOLSON

Oliver Stone may have an equal in the music business.

At an industry conference in Los Angeles last Tuesday, the rapper
Ice-T, a self-described "conspiracy theorist type of guy," shared his
views on the recording industry and the Napster controversy.

"Records are free when on the radio, right?" Ice-T said.

The recording companies, "are tripping off the fact this stuff comes
through the computer clean," he said. "That's the thing. When it comes
on the radio, you can tape it, I can send it to my homeboy.  But mail
moves slow and the Internet moves faster."

Most of Ice-T's comments had his audience of about 400 people roaring
with laughter. The gathering was the Herring on Hollywood 2000
conference, sponsored by The Red Herring, a business magazine.

"What the majors do is they go into gangster techniques," Ice-T said,
referring to the major recording labels.

"Napster will resurface in one of these major record companies as a
way to share files. Once they figure out how to take the technology
and get paid off of it."

Napster, of course, is the service that lets people swap music files
over the Internet, often with little regard to copyrights. The
Recording Industry Association of America is suing Napster in federal
court in San Francisco.

The rapper also commented on musicians, including the rapper Dr. Dre
and the band Metallica, suing Napster. "Some lawyer wakes me up and
says, 'Man, we can get a couple of million dollars.' And I'm like,
'Sue whoever you gotta sue. Who is Napster? What do they do?' " Ice-T
said suing is for lawyers, not artists.

Why do so many people traffic in music they haven't paid for? "To me,"
Ice-T said, "you got the cops and the robbers. And, to me, I think
human beings are naturally robbers. I think human beings want it free.
And that's just your nature. And, if there is a way around paying,
that is what you are going to do.  None of you guys are moral enough
to say I would rather pay $16 than get it free."


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