Thursday, December 11, 2008

New Music Site Lets Users Resell MP3s: The music industry's new battleground?

A new digital music service is getting lots of attention for proposing to help consumers sell their used MP3s in much the same way people once unloaded second-hand albums. opaboo has generated splashy headlines recently for coming up with what on the surface seems like a good idea. Music fans have always exercised their first-sale rights, which under copyright law, allows them to sell their unwanted CDs, tapes, and albums without permission from the copyright owner. Why can't they do the same with digital music? But there are dramatic differences between physical and digital medias. For this reason, Washington, D.C.-based Bopaboo appears to be careening toward a head-on collision with the recording industry. According to Bopaboo CEO Alex Meshkin, he will soon meet with executives from the major labels and execs there will no doubt ask why they shouldn't set their attorneys loose on the service. They may also inquire about controversy that dogged a then 23-year-old Meshkin when he was owner of Toyota's NASCAR team. As for the legal questions involved with MP3 resales, Meshkin, 28, argues that the law allows consumers to sell digital media files in the same way they do physical media.

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