Then and now



The pathetic record company warning from the 1980s receives a parodic makeover for the digital age. The original tape-and-crossbones graphic was printed on the inner sleeves of vinyl albums from major labels for a brief period when the record companies were in a panic about kids swapping tapes in school playgrounds. If only they knew what was coming… The record industry didn’t collapse into ruin, of course, in fact CD sales helped them heap up even greater profits. I’m sure they say now that ruin was prevented by “effective campaigning” or some other bullshit. A friend of mine once attended a lecture by representatives from the BPI (British Phonographic Institute) at the IPM in Liverpool. After listening to them pontificate about the evils of “music theft” he asked whether any of them had copied music for personal use; they ignored his question.