An Ares Downloads exclusive: Neil Diamond’s Album: Hot August Night:
Neil Diamond calls out to the tree huggers “Hello out there, Tree People…” obviously an acknowledgement by Neil that even the non-paying tree people had a value by adding to the carnival atmosphere of the concert and were therefore worthy of his recognition.
He didn’t chastise them for being free-loaders — everyone knew they were freeloading. He merely acknowledged them warmly.
However, it was also those words that in my mind justified the actions of myself and three friends when we jumped the fence at the Western Springs Stadium in Auckland, New Zealand, a few years later to watch Led Zeppelin.
Did we break the law? Obviously. So why did we do it?
Well, at the time we were poor starving students who couldn’t afford the $7.00 concert entry ticket price. Ares downloads were not available.
As students — for us, $7.00 equaled 2 loaves of bread, 2 dozen eggs, a ½ pound of butter and a jar of coffee and bag of sugar for two weeks (Basically I lived on a variation of poached egg on toast for breakfast lunch and tea). In other words – the price of the concert tickets was two weeks food bill but I had serious conflict. From a higher power than that which employed the security guards around the Western Springs venue – my girlfriend wanted to see “Stairway to Heaven“ being performed live. The same song that my best friend in high school had played at his funeral. He was able to plan out his own funeral because he died of cancer and he had 6 months in the hospital just waiting and planning for the end.
Can you imagine me saying No? (Especially when we were staying at digs only 800 meters from the Western Springs Stadium fence-line.)
The peer pressure was to jump the fence.
Now imagine if we’d been strangers to the area and the four of us had driven there by car and stopped to ask a lone walker for directions to the Concert — ‘Hi, can you give us directions to the Zep concert please?’
Sure, the average citizen would answer – and then they would proceed to give directions.
Then we’d jump the fence and enjoy the concert for free.
Can you imagine the following Newspaper story in 1976? – “Person giving directions to Rock and Roll concert freeloaders gets 12 months Jail and $50,000 fine.”
You can’t because back then, jumping the fence wasn’t much of a crime.
So tell me: am I growing crazy? Or did The Pirate Bay case see the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms get overturned in Stockholm?
What happened to the right to give directions without being automatically associated as a criminal?
Here’s the link to the Translation of the Courts ruling in the Pirate Bay Case – now translated to English http://www.wired.com/images_blogs/threatlevel/2009/04/piratebayverdicts.pdf
Here’s the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works http://www.wipo.int/treaties/en/ip/berne/trtdocs_wo001.html. I challenge anyone to find a reference to “jail term” as a remedy recommended by the convention.
If the Swedish courts don’t fix their own mistake, the European Court has no choice but to intervene.