Detect Traps

As useful as it is, it is a slightly hazardous thing to post a catalog of my music collection or to have my playlist tracked while I listen to music. Several times in the past — most recently this weekend — I’ve gotten requests from complete strangers to send them a copy of something in my collection. Case in point is this weekend’s request from another user of


I’m very sorry to bother you, but as I see you’ve been listening to lo-bat quite a lot a thought you might be able to help me. So, the thing is, my hard drive crashed a while ago, resulting in a total loss of all my music, including all of lo-bat’s music. However, I have been able to retrieve some of it from various sources, but as his website is down, not all of it. Specifically it’s two tracks that i’m missing: Barbara listen to this and Kinderkopkes. Which leads me to my question: I see that you’ve been scroobling these two tracks before; do you still have them? And if yes, would you be so kind to consider sending them to me in some way?

Thanks in advance!


See, as an occasional fellow listener of Lo-Bat. and his frantic 8-bit chiptunes, I have also noticed that his website has had problems in the past, and I’ve made a good job of finding what collection I have. I understand this stranger’s pain, I do. But here is the problem: who is this guy?

If I provide him with the two tracks he’s requested, do you know what I will have done? I would’ve broken US federal law, and potentially international law. Giving him these songs goes against the “Making Available” clause of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and would incur all manner of penalties and/or incarceration if I am found guilty. In all likelihood, it is a trap. I just can’t give this stranger the benefit of the doubt.

Before I can even consider sending these two files, I would have to do my own due diligence to track down the copyright of each song and determine if Lo-Bat himself is under signed contract with a record label or if copyright has been assigned to ASCAP, BMI, SESAC or any other agency to be enforced. That’s just too much work. Sorry, pal.

My advice in these situations is to decline the request. Protect yourself; there are entrapment trolls about, private companies who are paid by the copyright holders (usually the major labels) to go out onto the Internet, ferret out lawbreakers, and bring them to justice. With enough gullible suckers on the Net, it is a very profitable business. Believe it. So don’t be an RIAA show case; you can’t afford the help they’re demanding.

Published by Shawn

He's just this guy, you know?