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by SixFigureStart | July 27, 2009


As we all know, scratch the surface of the Internet and you will find temptation—the sort of temptations that prompt otherwise right-thinking and upstanding citizens to do things they'd never dream of in the outside world—especially when said citizens are spending a little more time at home than they'd like to at the moment. And, as some of us know all too well, it can be very easy to give into those temptations—after all, it's not like the Internet's ever going to betray you, right? I mean, who's got time to find out what little old me is up to behind closed doors?

As it turns out—and contrary to the teachings of the psychiatric profession—there are times when you should listen to the voices in your head telling you that you're a bad person. Joel Tenenbaum probably wishes he had: he's in court in Rhode Island today facing a $4.5 million lawsuit for sharing music files via the web. (Come on now, where did you think this post was going?)

Regardless of the rights or wrongs of Tenenbaum's situation—and he's pretty open about the fact that he did share music, if somewhat steamed at how the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) is dealing with it—his situation is exactly the sort of nightmare scenario likely to keep a lot of people of a certain age (like, under 40) awake at night.

So there's a simple message for anyone reading this: they are watching. And, broke as you might be, do you really need the new Lady Gaga single so bad you're prepared to steal it? If so, might one humbly suggest that y'all do your thieving the old school way: with a phone call to your local radio station and your finger hovering over record on your tape deck? You know it makes sense.

--Posted by Phil Stott, Staff writer,