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Crass: Capitalist traitors using copyright laws against Anarcho-Punk.Net - 3000 albums deleted because of these greedy selfish sellout bastards

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by anarcho-punk.net, Jul 18, 2012.

  1. Ivanovich

    IvanovichExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    And the fuckers still haven't paid us a cent for Bullshit 3. Well, Ungov, I told you, didn't I? Whatever, I think they have dug their graves with this one. Pissed off far too many people, they aint going to be able to just sweep it under the carpet. That line keeps coming into my head...

    The Frankenstein monster you created's turned against you, now you're hated

    Yeah, aint it the truth.

    -->> ©ra$s™

    Nice one.

    All these lyrics that been posted, so anyone up for making a comp of 'alternative' Crass covers? I wouldn't mind have a go at Roxy.

    Living might be more 'on topic', though.

    ...'course they fucking do.

    Bastards.
     
  2. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Admin Team Experienced member


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    Yup, we should add that to the article... They call us thieves well THEY are the one stealing from the bands.

    Watch out, Crass sued Conflict for using their lyrics and many other bands got into trouble for doing Crass covers, including Burnt Cross... hahah
     
  3. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Admin Team Experienced member


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    BTW, i forgot to mention that Crass have disabled all comments on their Facebook page. We can only comments the status they post now, but we can't add comments like we used to be able to do. Funny how the hypocrites preaching freedom of speech turned against it as soon as they get critised and now use censorship...

    But it's funny, because each time they post something on facebook there's a dozen of users who post the link to this article hahaha... Encouraging to see that there's still real anarchists in the punk scene.
     
  4. Ivanovich

    IvanovichExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Bastards can sue me if they want. They won't get anything out of it, cos I aint got any fucking money.
     
  5. Raztapunk

    RaztapunkMember Forum Member


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    I am sorry, but somehow you missed my point and I feel like I need to explain my self.

    My point was that no-one is worth analyzing so much while we have bigger problems in the world.
    They did what they did(speaking about the music and the old ideas), it was good, most of us agree on that, now fuck them.
    "They are cranky old fuckers" was said 'cos in that age opinions rapidly change.
    I have many real life examples where older people start getting weird and a bit mad, to be honest.
     
  6. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Admin Team Experienced member


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    We can fight against other problems in the world even while doing a little bit of cleaning on our side.

    Crass is a very popular band, it is important to show everyone how they turned their backs on their own ideals.
     
  7. Ammon

    AmmonExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    I saw this on crasses facebook page
     
  8. Rob Ray

    Rob RayNew Member New Member


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    Sorry if this has already been posted, but did a bit of a readthrough of that http://www.crassunofficial.com/crass.pdf by Pete Wright. As far as it can believed (and a lot of it rings true - including the simpering way Allison writes which is a dead ringer for that FB takedown note - proper passive-aggressive arsehole) from what I can tell the key points from it are:

    • Southern were running out of their run of CDs so Penny Rimbaud and Gee Voucher took the opportunity to do a "revamp," without getting any meaningful input from other members.
    • Pete Wright stood up to them and said that a) the revamp was tacky, b) the split for the band members shouldn't be renegotiated to allow some to take more than others
    • Penny and Gee then attempted to shut him down, which ended up drawing out a load of shit that had happened at Dial House and split the band down the middle.
    While this was going on, Southern was losing money mainly due to the closure of most of the independent record stores they had been dealing with, which ended up in 2009 with the woman who'd originally been backing this divisive re-release, Allison Schnackenberg, taking over as sole owner and director.

    Schnackenberg, apparently with the tacit consent of Penny, Gee, Eve Libertine and Steve Ignorant, went ahead with the reprint anyway, despite the outright refusal of Pete, Joy de Vivre and N A Palmer (this in a band which has always prided itself on consensus). Pete attempted to sue them to stop the reprint but was basically priced out by the potential cost of losing the case.

    Once she'd won (this is in late 2010), Allison seems to have started sicking the copyright dogs on anyone she could find. I suspect at least one Crass member (or Allison herself - hai there) will be out there reading this thread to confirm one way or the other - how close have I got with that summary guys?

    Seriously, anyone ever runs into Pete, buy that man a pint for standing up to those creeps. And never buy from Southern again.
     
  9. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Admin Team Experienced member


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    She should add "copyright protection" :lmao:

    Yep, they're checking this forum and the person i have talked to from Crass FB account said that "people at Anarcho-Punk.net hate crass anyway" so it proves that they have read the last debates about Crass... For sure, they're reading this thread.

    Hi Allison. Fuck you sellout.

    We've been trying to contact him to tell him what happenned to APN because of those fuckers at Southern, but he's pretty hard to find on internet... Anyway, sooner or later he's gonna hear about it, this article is already widespread on internet...
     
  10. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Admin Team Experienced member


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    Even the admin of Crass facebook page realised they're sellouts. He posted this today :
    Respect to that ! At first I thought he was the guy i talked to, well it's definetly not him..
     
  11. punkmar77

    punkmar77Administrator Staff Member Admin Team Experienced member


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    That is amazing...well we have obviously changed some minds if their own page admin is rejecting them...it was only a matter of time before they really stuck their foot in it. :poop: :ecouteurs:
     
  12. phcumbria

    phcumbriaNew Member New Member


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    Apr 15, 2011
     
    to the above punkmer77 , less of the personal insults.. anarchy and peace and respect. you say all the hard work to collate this collection of albums etc on anarcho punk . net put in has been destroyed.. you are protective of what was put together!! but crass or former members seem to be as well and have stated they had no problems people burning copies off, just they didnt want downloading on your sight. correct me if im wrong southern sent an email to this effect before they contacted mediafire.it is a good resource you provide, but i was always told never take anything for granted.. people do change.so it might of been an idea to contact them before hand !! all the wrangles with crass and reissues is a sorry mess granted, but pete wright was threatening to take penny and co to the high court ie use the system against former band members!!!
    and on the issue of paypal and credit cards always an alternative , these are very dodgy companies to say your forced is a cop out! if former members of crass cant agree or change their tune, on monies etc, they aint gonna think about anarcho punk net..but to be honest more important things than music to be worried about. leave crass or former members at the roadside and move on without them.. but over the years most of the punk bands reputations have turned to shit!!
    the bands you have on your site play dodgy venues for over inflated prices ie corporate run in the uk and abroad.. but lets not spend another fucking thirty years tearing each other to bits..
     
  13. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Admin Team Experienced member


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    How the fuck does file sharing destroy what crass have built ? Your argument is one of the most retarded thing i have ever heard

    NO THEY DIDN'T SEND US A FUCKING EMAIL BEFORE did you even take the time to read the article before commenting ?

    Beginning from now, i am not even going to waste my time answering stupid arguments like that. The debate is about CRASS. Even if we were a capitalist website (which we are not) it doesn't change anything to the argument brought against crass. Additionally, comparing the use of paypal to DMCA copyright laws and actions resulting in 3000 albums removed IS FUCKING RETARDED.

    When someone puts up a criticism, answering by shooting the messenger instead of considering the message is for lazy ass who doesn't have the courage to answer the real arguments.
     
  14. phcumbria

    phcumbriaNew Member New Member


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    anyone out there.. crassunofficial.com/ to the person above ie mr ungovernable please read this!! in the future you may ask permision or risk the same thing happening again if permission aint sought. yes i ve got a grip on the argument, but i think you aint, anarcho punks sense of entitlement is very misled!! the story of crass has ended in a sad fucking mess. if you bother to read the above, they the band dont have a problem with downloading, but its all about respect, dont take things for granted!! dont try and interpret what others think. i think the lesson will be learned, after all its their choice!! got better things than banging my head against a wall, love and peace!!
     
  15. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Admin Team Experienced member


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    Once again you didn't even read the fucking article before opening your mouth. If you did, you would see that i have posted a discussion with Crass where they CLEARLY state they DO NOT WANT their music to be available for download, so yes they OD have a problem with downloading.

    In the future we will just use torrents so nobody except us will be able to remove albums and we can say a big fuck you to assholes like Crass who prefer to use capitalist copyright laws instead of talking with us. So it will just have the opposite of the expected effect on Anarcho-Punk.net.
     
  16. punkmar77

    punkmar77Administrator Staff Member Admin Team Experienced member


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    Look arguing with people that don't really have a clue what anarchism means is a complete waste of time, to the majority of anarchists and punks and others out there, what Crass have done is treasonous...will everyone agree? Of course not, do we have better things to do in our personal lives than worry about silly old wankers becoming capitalists? Of course we do. But at the same time we have new generations of punks around the world that are going to consider these guys as their heroes...they deserve the full picture, questioning everything, everybody and ourselves are core anarchist tenets...and as anarquistas we will always be wary of the double-agents among us, history has taught us this the hard way.

    So stepping in shit is a personal insult? Sorry I'm not a pacifist, and respect is given freely to those that respect themselves and all of us as compañerxs..however we have been highly disrespected by having anti-piracy laws effected upon us by 'so called' fellow anarchists..to that I say, No Pasaran!
     
  17. Raztapunk

    RaztapunkMember Forum Member


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    Of course punkmar77. But the anti-heroism is one of the basics of anarchism. For example, Proudhon was anti-Semitic but that doesn't means that we should discredit all of his ideas.

    In the same manner, Crass sold-out and it's a really awful thing, but they are old fuckers and that was said many times on this forum.
    Though, they still have my respect for what they did for the punk scene, for the poor people, for the culture, sub-culture and anti-culture and for, of course, Anarchism.
     
  18. dwBeatnik

    dwBeatnikMember New Member


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    Wow! Where do I begin in this debacle?

    First of all, I want to say that I really appreciate this site and all the music it provides. I have a great many of the albums that were posted here but would occasionally download albums in lieu of not having time to rip the vinyl to digital format. I was also pretty amazed at the rarities that were posted here such as the Jane Gregory 7-inch (which I've been trying to find for the past 20 years to no avail) and the unreleased Steve Ignorant "rap" 7-inch. I downloaded these recordings with glee! However, if Crass Records were to deem them fit to see print again, I would gladly purchase them.

    I wanted to chime in on some of the accusations that have been listed because I feel that they have been based on inaccurate information. Per the anarcho-punk.net points of unity, I'm not directing these attacks against any of the individuals' posts because I feel that would not serve any purpose if our true intention is to communicate about these issues. However, when trying to formulate my thoughts about the points I wanted to make by discussing this issue out loud to another person, I realized just how fucking complex this whole matter is because we're not just discussing one person's problem, this involves a group of 10 different people.

    People have been slagging off Crass and accusing them of becoming capitalist; they've been making claims that the re-mastered material was all about making money and there have also been claims that Crass have been making money all of this time on the original releases. Then there are the claims that they gave away records and things of that sort. This information is part true...

    In a Maximum Rocknroll interview conducted in 1987 (sorry, I don't remember the issue number), Steve Ignorant stated that the only Crass album that he was still receiving royalties from was Stations Of The Crass; the figure he stated was less than 1 quid. I don't remember the exact number he stated because 1987 was the last time I read this article but it was something to the effect of 57p. This was the amount he received each week in royalties; this interview was conducted three years after Crass broke up. I'm going to assume that all the other members made the same amount each week, except maybe Andy Palmer who wanted nothing more to do with the band when he left in '84. In another radio interview (I think it was a Swedish radio interview... but I'm not sure!), one of the members- probably Penny Rimbaud- stated that because of odd jobs they each performed while living in a squatted property in the rural countryside, they could each get by on 2 quid a day. 57p/week doesn't even pay Steve's daily sustenance and he remained in the Dial House (the Crass house) throughout the '90s. Hardly the wage of a profiteering rock star... PLUS you have to take into account that the release of Reality Asylum ended up costing the band more money than the price of the record (was it 50p or 95p? I can't remember...) . Every time the record sold, they lost money. You can read about this in The Story Of Crass AND in Steve Ignorant's autobiography. There was also a book of punk photos that came out in the '90s... don't remember the title... but it had pics of Crass and told the story of how the prices on the covers of their records didn't account for VAT tax to the British Crown and so the record label took a MAJOR financial hit for back taxes not being paid. If memory serves, this was a huge part of the reason why Crass Records stopped pressing releases.

    In the early '90s, Crass Records released the Crass material on cassette, which was the popular format in the '80s due to snap, crackle, and pop on vinyl but by the '90s, people were more interested in CDs so I really doubt sales improved much. It wasn't really until the late '90s that I recall seeing ANY Crass on CD and members of the band- particularly Penny & Steve- mention in the liner notes to the re-mastered Feeding that they felt the CDs didn't get the consideration they deserved when releasing to this new format. Part of the reason for re-mastering was to improve upon the original recordings utilizing this newer technology.

    The OTHER part of the reasoning for re-mastering the back catalog was because Southern Records wasn't doing so well financially and Penny wanted to help them out by creating a re-mastered catalog. He was already beginning this task when John Loder passed away, if memory serves correctly. A brouhaha went down, when other members (Pete Wright) found out what was going on. Pete felt that the re-masters were just being done for nostalgic purposes and were not relevant to today's issues, while Penny felt that he could make them relevant through new packaging, boosted sound quality, new material that was never included in the original releases, and what have you. If you read Penny Rimbaud's very long rant titled Crassword on the Southern site two or three years ago, it depicts this whole situation in fine detail. I can understand both points of view on this debate. I also wanted to mention that Penny & Steve decided to release the re-masters even though they couldn't resolve this issue with the other band members. According to an online interview that Steve conducted last year (link found on the Southern forum), all of the monies made from those releases cannot be dispensed to ANYONE until the legal fiasco between the band mates is resolved. So currently, NO ONE IS MAKING MONEY OFF OF THE RE-MASTERED CATALOG.

    People have also been complaining about "expensive gig prices" at the Steve Ignorant gigs. When my band arYAWN played gigs in Europe in 2010, our plane tickets from the US to France cost us $2000 round trip per person! One of us was already in France but the other two had to pay $4000 just for the flight over the pond. When I came back to the US, I had $600 in my pocket... just a little more than my rent costs. It ain't the rock star lifestyle everyone seems to think it is... The Steve Ignorant gigs in the US were just a year later. If they paid the same rates we did, then their 5-person band paid $10,000 just for their plane tickets. This doesn't even include gas for travel within the US, food, accommodation, etc. Regardless of who foots the bill, there are a lot of expenses when you're a traveling band in a foreign country.

    As far as copyright goes, I know for certain that Steve Ignorant stated in many interviews that it annoyed him to no end that any old Tom, Dick, & Harry could go on eBay and sell a home-made Crass alarm clock and it bothered him that he wasn't seeing a penny of that. At the time of this interview, the Crass logo was NOT a copyrighted logo, at least not according to the Crass entry on Wikipedia about 5 years ago. At some point that changed, probably at the suggestion of Allison Schnackenburg, who is the Southern Records website admin and basic record label domme. Penny feels very strongly that it should be up to the artist to determine if their work should be made available to the public and I understand his attitude regarding this. He's stated this in a couple of interviews and the Story of Crass book mentioned that records may have been traded between different bands or the occasional gift given to a friend but for the most part, they relied on sales to generate releases by other bands. The Bullshit Detector comps were never intended to be used for profit as they were intended to be "fanzines on vinyl" that would provide exposure for the bands they chose to be on the records.

    The sense I get from Allison of Southern is that she is fighting to keep Southern afloat. When you look at the most recent goings on through the lens of their website, you can see that they closed their US branch two years ago and then they just dropped some record labels from their distribution list. If Southern folds, then there is no longer an international distributor of the same size for record labels like Crass, Bluurg, Dischord, Southern Lord... This thought freaks a lot of people out. Southern accomplishes what Rough Trade did for anarcho-punk in the '80s. However, this fear shouldn't bring about a knee-jerk response to utilize laws that one purports to be against. I wish that she'd approached you guys from a different stance; I've been seeing her and Southern start to slowly go in this direction for the past year and the interactions the label has had with other bands can attest to this. I'm not at liberty to discuss those issues because I don't want to drag those other bands into this argument without their permission but it's something I've been watching and hearing about.... I think that a happy resolution could have been reached had she just contacted you directly; I can totally understand why you guys are pissed but I really feel this was a "managerial decision" made by Allison and not Crass as a whole (or even half of Crass, for that matter!).

    I'm interested in this fundraiser you're putting together to create a new database. Heck, my band isn't very well-known at all but the only time we charged money for our music was when we toured in Europe so that we could make some of the money back spent on going there. If you're in need of bands to donate, I can provide a track. If you've already got that covered, then I look forward to buying a copy to help pay for your new server!

    If anyone has any information that refutes what I'm stating here, I'm not going to be offended. It would be cool if we could have a discussion and not a bashing. Let's leave the bashing for the fuckers in power.

    I wish I could remember most of my sources. I'll try to find them but it's kind of hard to remember everything you've ever read or seen in the course of 30 years and I've been following Crass about that long.

    Sorry for the long as fuck post but as I mentioned earlier, this is a complex issue.
     
  19. Caps

    CapsExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    dwBeatnik, I have the same problem with your post that I do with a few others. I don't see the point you are trying to make. I'm not having a go but there have been a few posts that seem somewhat sympathetic to CRASS without being able to justify what has been done from an anarchist, CRASS-principled basis. I understand the situation is complex and you are obviously plenty informed of the situation but the questions in my head are like this:

    Why did CRASS/Southern/whoever go through legal channels and cause a shitload of problems when they could have simply contacted the site? Profane Existence does not get on well with this site but they said take their stuff down and down it went. Not everyone will like each other in anarchist society but we certainly won't be bashing laws on people's heads. Why like this?

    Are CRASS/Ignorant/Southern/whoever making a great deal of profit from these re-issues? If they are, that seems wrong because it seems to turn the art into product and the message into a curio. It also seems to be completely out-of-order considering the divisions in the original band about the whole thing. I can't help but think that the development of these re-issues could only occur because of the anarchist principles (not contracts) that started everything and then the use of un-anarchist principles later.

    If they are not making a great deal of profit, then what's the fucking deal? If money's not a factor then what the hell could be problem of supplying people with a means to receive their art and their message? Look at bands like Subhumans and Conflict - still making music, still selling their albums at sensible prices and happy to support the work of this site. I can't imagine their better off than Ignorant and certainly not Rimbauld. If profit isn't the motivator then what is the fucking issue? I'll also add that however costly you found it touring in Europe, Ignorant pedalling CRASS is a lot more likely to make a notable profit. (I'm sure you didn't get away with about £30 (about $50) for tickets in the UK).

    They can't fucking win this. The best thing they could do - the best thing - is say "sorry, we are not what we were" and offer some transparency. However, they won't do that because the image maintains their support.

    So, my point is: what are people trying to defend? Is it okay to sell out? Possibly. Is it okay to sell out and yet keep your stance vague at its clearest? I can't see it. What are the points of the history lessons, the arguments etc etc.

    Still, welcome to the site. I hope you contribute a bit more.
     
  20. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Admin Team Experienced member


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    Even if you are right, do you think this money won't end up in Crass' members pockets ? They're not just gonna throw it away because of a legal problem. Once it is resolved, it will end up in their pocket.
    The re-mastered albums shouldn't have been released at all, seeing that other members were against it.

    These albums are also WAY overpriced for albums who used to be "pay no more than $3" and there's no excuse for it. Today it costs around $1 per album to release albums like Crass remasters, especially when you press them at big quantities like Crass are doing.

    I've heard that many times, sorry but it sounds like big bullshit.

    Let's ASSUME you are right.

    Let's ASSUME it cost $10k for the band to get to Canada

    The tickets were at $30 each and there was over 2000 persons. That's $50k profit INCLUDING their plane tickets, and i'm not counting the merch sold. And trust me they have sold A LOOOOT of merch, it took my friend 30 minutes just to get 1 tshirt since there was so many people waiting to buy merch. The merch dude has a pile of money of easily over $10k just in his hands.

    And remember, Steve Ignorant played 40 shows. Just checked on his official website. So you have to multiply this number...

    How ironic. At Anarcho-Punk.net many bands relies on file sharing to get notoriety and to spread their message to a wider audience, but because Crass wants sales they can't do it anymore. They just killed the method thousands of bands are using to get known and generate releases, but the excuse is supposed to be that they need sales to generate releases by other bands...

    There is no excuse at all for using copyright laws... The goal of Crass was always to spread a message to the widest possible audience and that's why they have been giving away tens of thousands of records and playing free shows. If they put copyright on their stuff, then how the hell are poor people supposed to get their records ? You're going to tell south african and south american punks who can't afford to pay overpriced crass albums plus the import fees that they are thieves because and that they shouldnt download ?

    Saying that file sharing kills sales is a false argument. We have released free-download records and we have no problem to sell physical copies. Take a look at http://compilation.pirate-punk.net
    APN will also release a similar compilation soon. We know many other bands who have been supporting file sharing while having no trouble to sell their albums. I'm pretty sure that file sharing even INCREASE your sales because people get to know you and then they buy your album. It also helps a lot for small bands to get known internationally... Take for example a small band from Europe who has no sale point in america : free download will help them a lot to get known here, and eventually they can come to do gigs and sell merch because they made a fanbase through file sharing. I know thousands of bands who got known this way.

    I for one, live in Quebec and listen a lot to french anarcho-punk bands. An album cost usually less than $10 but it cost me over $30 with shipping fees to import it here. No way i can afford that for every single band i listen to. But after downloading, i end up buying the stuff i like the most because i still want to support the bands. When they come here i go at their shows and buy their stuff. If i come across a distro having european punk bands, i will buy to support them. But without file sharing i wouldn't even know these bands and they wouldn't come here because nobody else would know them neither.

    And seriously, with all the overpriced albums they are selling, i can't believe they have financial problems. Sounds like bullshit. Nobody in the whole anarcho-punk scene are selling more albums than Crass. If they have financial problems because they can't sell enough albums, then the smaller bands should be in a worse situation but they are NOT. Crass have built a 30-years-long notoriety and are the most well known band in the anarcho scene. Pretending they would have financial problem at the point of opposing to file sharing is huge bullshit.

    Now i totally agree with you and that's all we were asking for - contact us before using copyright laws against us !

    Like we stated many time, we respect the decision of a band to be against file sharing even if we have different point of view. The same would have applied to Crass..
     
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