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FBI arrests blogger for posting Guns N' Roses Songs

He pre-released nine songs

     
7:11 pm on Aug 27, 2008 (gmt 0)

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FBI agents arrested 27-year-old Kevin Cogill on Wednesday morning on suspicion of violating federal copyright laws. Federal authorities say Cogill posted nine unreleased Guns N' Roses songs on his Web site in June.

[news.yahoo.com ]

8:00 pm on Aug 27, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Cool. People often ask about how much protection copyright provides. Good example.
12:52 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Ya, its a great example of the power of a billion dollar recording company.

You think the FBI is going to give you this kind of service for your websites? Think again.

2:47 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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No the FBI wouldn't be interested in copyright theft of your website however if someone broke into your developmental computer and stole code that you developed over ten years that had potential to be worth millions they'd be interested. That would be a much closer analogy to this case.

This isn't simply some teenager uploading a few songs to a file sharing network. These are unreleased songs which he has no legal right to possess to begin with it, its stolen content with enormous value. What he did has the potential to cause millions of dollars in damage.

5:03 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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What he did has the potential to cause millions of dollars in damage.

Possibly.

But Axl has done himself no favors by taking 15 years to release this material. Every extra day added to the potential leak of this music. He has a very long list of enemies.

We will see how it plays out in the courts but I suspect this person will not suffer the entire penalty because Rose is completely dysfunctional and will not behave properly within the legal system.

5:06 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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By the way, many music fans laughed outloud, myself included, when word spread that the album was leaked.

If you have been following this saga, its quite funny.

5:13 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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If you have been following this saga, its quite funny.

How far back should we go? I used to follow it back in the late 90s. Axl has a history. :)

5:14 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Or more likely tens of millions of dollars. The length of time its taking to release it is irrelevant as is the mental state of Axl Rose. This isn't civil litigation but a criminal prosecution.
5:17 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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You think the FBI is going to give you this kind of service for your websites? Think again.

Actually, if you can present a clear and compelling case to the FBI, they are happy to enforce the law. It's good have a lawyer. The U.S. Treasury Department's Secret Service is also very easy work with. How the web can track all of this is one of the great things about the Internet.

5:32 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Or more likely tens of millions of dollars. The length of time its taking to release it is irrelevant as is the mental state of Axl Rose. This isn't civil litigation but a criminal prosecution.

We will see how it plays out Coalman, but never underestimate Axl Rose's ability to screw things up.

8:42 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Don't know about FBI's interest in website copyright, but they had no interest whatsoever in tracking down the person who made a not-so-veiled threat to me over the internet. The local cops ended up tracking him down and asked me what I wanted them to do. I figured it was enough if they told him we knew who he was. Seemed to work. I guess potential loss of life isn't enough for the feds anymore - unless money is involved. :(
9:01 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I understand your frustration with that lawman but if the FBI tried to follow up on every threat made on the internet they be completely bogged down. I think taking something like that to the local police would be the correct course of action. They have more resources to go around when you consider the vast number of officers working at the local level.
10:44 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I guess potential loss of life isn't enough for the feds anymore - unless money is involved.

protection of IP rights for large corporations has a higher priority than interstate online bullies.
axl/g'n'r have reportedly hooked up with irving azoff, who recently was involved in the latest eagles album, which was released exclusively through walmart.
releasing "chinese democracy" exclusively through walmart is a delicious irony even without all the axl backstory.

11:16 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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releasing "chinese democracy" exclusively through walmart is a delicious irony even without all the axl backstory.

Oh my! I'm pissin' me pants over here! That would be a perfect ending to this whole love affair between Axl and his fan base.

I can just picture the Walmart greeters now the day the album hits the shelves. Oh crap...

11:50 pm on Aug 28, 2008 (gmt 0)

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i wonder if it will be "made in china" like 99.9% of the rest of the merchandise.
maybe they'll sell it for $8.88 to keep the olympic spirit going...
5:10 am on Aug 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Upon further review, he's going to jail.

There is specific paragraph in U.S. Copyright law under the Criminal Infringement section that addresses his act.

(a) Criminal Infringement.

(1) In general. Any person who willfully infringes a copyright shall be punished as provided under section 2319 of title 18, if the infringement was committed

(A) for purposes of commercial advantage or private financial gain;

(B) by the reproduction or distribution, including by electronic means, during any 180-day period, of 1 or more copies or phonorecords of 1 or more copyrighted works, which have a total retail value of more than $1,000; or

(C) by the distribution of a work being prepared for commercial distribution, by making it available on a computer network accessible to members of the public, if such person knew or should have known that the work was intended for commercial distribution.

[copyright.gov...]

7:06 am on Aug 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Interestingly the Yahoo story has been rewritten since yesterday.Then it contained a paragraph (similar ones I've subsequently found in other versions of the story on other sites - this one is taken from Wired), which went along the lines of:

The charge is a "felony punishable by imprisonment for not more than three years or, if the offense was committed for commercial advantage or private financial gain, for not more than five years."

Syzygy

7:00 pm on Sept 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

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should have known that the work was intended for commercial distribution.

in that case he will get off

nobody .... expects Chinese Democracy will ever be released

8:27 pm on Sept 2, 2008 (gmt 0)

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in that case he will get off.

nobody...expects Chinese Democracy will ever be released

ROLF!

5:41 pm on Sept 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I heard a few of these new songs from a concert release quite a few years ago. I thought they were pretty darn good, on the level of earlier GnR hits. Can't believe it's been this long now. Axl is talented but a bit crazy. I'm surprised he's survived this long considering how many other similar types have died early in their careers.
5:54 pm on Sept 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I'm surprised he's survived this long considering how many other similar types have died early in their careers.

He can't even die early properly- it just proves what a screwup he is. Looking forward to hearing the songs.
1:07 pm on Sept 4, 2008 (gmt 0)

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You watch, sometime in the next 5 years G n' R will reunite and score huge bucks just like Van Halen & the Police just did. Its amazing what a few well timed divorces can do the bank accounts of these guys.

Axl will hit rehab, sign a contract with Slash that their will be limited use of substances while on the road, they will play 50 shows and bank 200 million dollars. Then its back to being a jerk for Axl.

As for his ability to survive, some of these guys have 9 lives. Think about Keith Richards and Elton John, how the heck did they survive?

7:49 pm on Oct 22, 2008 (gmt 0)

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At last the first track was released to radio today, and the album follows on November 23rd.

I can't say I'm bowled over by the single, but perhaps it's a grower!

9:59 pm on Oct 22, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Think about Keith Richards and Elton John, how the heck did they survive?

Or the all time king of should have been dead a long time ago OzzY... :P

2:49 pm on Oct 27, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Actually I would think this might increase sales. (If they record company handles it right and release the work soon) Scandal will usually stir up the publicity.
1:20 pm on Nov 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Think about Keith Richards and Elton John, how the heck did they survive?

Or the all time king of should have been dead a long time ago OzzY... :P

One has to take into consideration that for every self-destructive artist living a long life there are many that have fallen. Some of them might not have even been that self-destructive.

1:58 pm on Nov 3, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Some of them might not have even been that self-destructive.

Quite; while Keith Richards (for example), on his own admission, has taken drugs costing the equivalent of several small nations, Elton John probably spends more on flowers than hard drugs.

If convicted, Cogil is likely to face a maximum of one year in prison, rather than the originally mooted five.

[Yahoo! news item [uk.news.launch.yahoo.com]]

Looks like he's decided to plead guilty after all ...

[edited by: Quadrille at 2:12 pm (utc) on Nov. 3, 2008]