The EFF Never Met an Artist They Didn’t Want to Stiff

The Electronic Frontier Foundation is continuing their campaign of making every artist suffer to the full extent of the law–and now they are going after indie film makers trying to protect themselves from the onslaught of theft that the EFF loves to lionize. And EFF have a couple new friends that make it all the more vile. (See also Vivek Wadhwa’s excellent piece “How The EFF Lost Its Way By Defending Hate Mongers And Tunnel Rats“–“[W]hen organizations achieve too much success, they often develop a sense of confidence and arrogance that, when unchecked, leads to their downfall. They begin to believe they can ‘do no evil’”.)

EFF’s artist-hater in chief we are told defended YouTube, Veoh, TorrentSpy, LimeWire and Real Networks among others. Those last two had some serious accusations leveled at them about futzing around with evidence, and the EFF got called out in the LimeWire case by the federal judge presiding. Most lawyers would find that embarrassing or potentially career ending–not this guy. He stepped right over to Google (who was probably in the background in all these cases even if they weren’t named.) Looks like he made his bones. Google, of course, is enjoying their latest victory over creators in the YouTube case that built upon the the ridiculous proposition that the Congress of the United States intended that stealing is good for America. But since Google styles itself as “the biggest kingmaker on this Earth” none of this is surprising. (See today’s round of antitrust prosecutions, “Google Told By France to Restore Map Service’s Ads“.)

I think it is a safe guess that you can lay a good billion dollars of losses and untold pain of families at the feet of the EFF and their program of defending liars, thieves and obfuscators. And now we are about to launch into a new era of destruction of the creative community as these Children of the Lessig God have aligned themselves with Public Citizen and the ACLU to attempt to destroy the livelihoods of yet more creators and their families. Roy Cohn must be laughing his tuckus off.

By this action, these three groups have put themselves squarely against the creator unions and the families they represent–the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, the American Federation of Musicians, the Directors Guild of America, the International Alliance of Theatrical and Stage Employees, the Screen Actors Guild and the Songwriters Guild of America, not to mention the AFLCIO. This is a new role for Public Citizen and the ACLU, old news for the EFF.

This new alliance is especially troubling given the millions that ACLU receives from what’s left of the entertainment industry. I have asked them to remove me from their fund-raising list. There is no reason to pay to support the activities of anyone who may be admirable 90% of the time, but dedicated to your existential destruction 10% of the time. This is different than disagreeing with them–they have gone over to the dark side.

It seems pretty clear that all those years our industry supported ACLU are now gone in a flash when Google and their fellow travelers show up.

Of course it is not 100% clear whether EFF got any of the hundreds of thousands in money from offshore gambling operations (including from trusts associated with confessed felon Anurag Dikshit) that Lessig acknowledges receiving for a couple of his other pet projects. Maybe some of that money is finding its way to to the ACLU, too. They obviously don’t need support from creators anymore.

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