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Is This The Worst Week Ever For Gangsters?

By / 01.21.11

They see me rrrrrollin', they hatin'...

Today is not a good day for organized crime. In New York, the FBI is booking alleged gangsters left and right, while on the international crime scene, the music industry is crying over how people don’t want to pay inflated prices for their wares. Yes, it’s bad news for crime syndicates, gleefully reported here at Uproxx News.

First, let’s look at the gangsters on the wrong side of the law. The FBI nabbed members of seven crime families, all the five New York mobs, one from New Jersey, and even a few from New England, including the alleged head of the Patriarcha crime family, Luigi Manocchio, whose last name is very difficult to spell correctly off the top of your head and is apparently in trouble for collecting protection money from strip clubs in Providence, RI. We can’t blame him: there are a lot to choose from, in Providence. Another two dozen highly placed mobsters were taken down with him, so, if you’re looking for job opportunities, the mob seems to have a few middle-management openings.

As for the charges, the unlucky one hundred were arraigned on all the classics: murder, extortion, narcotics trafficking, illegal gambling, but sadly no bootlegging of alcohol. The arrests happened mostly in New York City and took heavy coordination between the FBI, the NYPD, and the New York State Police. We’re greatly looking forward to the showboating trials, inevitable betrayals, and a dozen or so crappy indie movies pretending to be Scorsese films that will inevitably result.

Meanwhile, speaking of gangsters, the music industry is complaining, once again, that they aren’t making enough money on digital downloads. This is nothing new, the music industry has been complaining about consumers exercising their right to choose for years now. What is new is that right now they’re complaining that people aren’t downloading enough.

Apparently, the digital portion of the music industry has only experienced 6% growth this year, to a business of $4.6 billion worldwide. Back of the envelope calculations would indicate this means people are downloading somewhere between 3 to 4 billion songs annually, which sounds like pretty good business to us, but we don’t have a coke habit to pay for.

The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (way to stay current with the times, guys), the body issuing these figures, also insisted that 95% of music downloads are unlicensed. So, just to be clear, if our calculations are correct, and if we lowball it, the IFPI is essentially claiming that, around the world, every year, people download between 300 and 400 billion songs.

Which breaks out to about 100 songs per person actually on the Internet. So the IFPI sincerely believes you downloaded 100 songs this year, and stole 95 of them.

OK, then! Maybe hire a bookkeeper for your numbers next time, guys.


  • Gangsters are rounded up in New York, book deals and cable movies are imminent. (MSNBC)
  • The IFPI has zero grasp of how people use the Internet. (Yahoo!)



  • From the “substantially delayed reaction” file, Canadian radio stations have been ordered to censor the lyrics of the song “Money For Nothing” by Dire Straits, due to the feeling that some of the lyrics, probably that verse where they drop the f-bomb five or six times, are offensive to gay men. We’re not sure what’s more baffling on this, the fact that Dire Straits has explained, repeatedly, that the song is intended to be sarcastic, something the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council admitted and then promptly ignored, or the fact that this has only come up now when “Money for Nothing” was first released in 1985. (Reuters)
  • And from the “idiot criminal” file, a bunch of dimwits broke into a house in Florida, found some cremated remains, thought they were cocaine, and snorted them. No, the victim didn’t keep the dearly beloved in a baggie, the remains were in an urn. So these guys honestly thought a little old lady snorted coke, and kept huge amounts of it lying around her house in a vase. Why do they never use stories like this to illustrate why drugs are bad? (Vancouver Sun)



  • Nearly two billion people have access to the Internet. And all of them, apparently, are stealing music from the suffering music industry. (World Internet Statistics)
  • Apparently, the number one downloaded song on iTunes, ever, is “I Gotta Feeling” by the Black Eyed Peas. Something is horribly wrong in this world. (AOL)

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