A band I work with is two weeks away from their release date. They've worked tirelessly to prepare for this release, hired an excellent publicist, shot videos, toured....they've done it all right and without fatigue. That record is the most valuable thing these people own. At this moment their careers are built around that record. There is a lovely buzz going on with the band, and many people are very excited to get the record - good old-fashioned buzz.

The band came to me in distress saying the album had been pirated by the website Plixid. This was a straight-up, unabashed, pre-release leak and theft of the band's most dear property. Presumedly a publicity copy of the record found its way into the hands of someone who was willing to leak it to Plixid.

We wrote a cease-and-desist letter and the letter worked. I am copying that letter here for anyone's use, and I encourage you all to make an effort to help advocacy and activism win the war against music pirates.

Plixid's email form: http://plixid.com/contact/

The letter that worked: "I am with the record label ___________ who is the copyright holder of the album _______ by ________. We need to either see that your free download of this album is removed from your website withing 24 hours (by 5pm EST Month Day, Year) or we will have to take legal action against you. Please email me with confirmation of the removal of this copyrighted material immediately."

I am convinced that the only way to win this same old war - the war that laws and lawsuits and all the other attempts have failed to end - is ultimately only gonig to change through advocacy and activism.

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

Or Learn More