I’m sort of delighted by this. I mean I went to a very liberal college and there’s a certain kind elitist and dim knee jerk liberal I really dislike. Dorm room revolutionaries who end up unwittingly doing the work of the man. The kind that end up blogging for The New Republic.
Recently John Cougar Mellancamp wrote a piece in which he criticized the music business. In particular he criticized them and his fellow artists for not standing up to large corporations like Google who have monetized illegal file-sharing by selling advertising against illegal download search results and also by providing advertising directly to file infringing sites.
The New Republic-always the class act-decided to respond with a character assassination piece. They sent the remarkably ignorant Lydia DePillis (on twitter @lydiadepillis) a 3 year real estate journalism veteran to “School” the 40 year music business veteran John Mellencamp on the history and future of the music business. It’s freaking hilarious. Not only does this “professional” journalist not understand that the main point is that Mellencamp is criticizing the music business for not protecting artists she wanders completely off topic and makes historical claims that have no basis in fact. Further she incorrectly disputes Mellencamp’s facts.
I’m just gonna give you one example. The 3 year journalism veteran claims that search engines don’t make money off the searches for illegal downloads. it took exactly 3.2 seconds for me to disprove this…
That is Google advertising against a set of infringing links.
Also she then dismisses and mocks Mellencamp’s correct claim that Google makes plenty of money serving ads on sites that it knows are infringing.
Here is Google’s Doubleclick serving an ad for Jeep on the that same site http://www.dilandau.eu A site that Google’s own transparency report ranks as the 24th most copyright infringing site in the world. Isn’t knowingly providing money to an illegal enterprise a RICO predicate?
It is sad but not surprising to see The New Republic standing up for the right of giant corporations and criminal groups to make money by exploiting artists songs. The New Republic has totally lost it’s way. They are now for the big corporations and against the little guy.
If The New Republic has any journalistic integrity left it needs to correct the falsehoods in this article. Further they should apologize to Mellencamp for the nasty tone of this article. I’m sure they won’t but it’s worth a try. Maybe tweeting at the author will work better @lydiadepillis .