Blogger Arrested Over Chinese Democracy

    December 16, 2008
    Chris Crum

Despite the fact that Axl Rose is the only original member left in Guns N’ Roses, his (I say "his" because this is truly one man’s project with the help of some hired hands) album Chinese Democracy is quite possibly the most anticipated album in history. At this point (and I can say this as a huge fan of the original band), it’s not even that people expect it to be good. It’s just that we’ve been waiting for it since the time when it seemed like good was a possibility, which seems like eons ago. I think I was still in high school.

There have been various songs leaked over the years, but one man named Kevin Cogill somehow got a hold of what is allegedly the real album, and set out to prove that its existence wasn’t merely a myth. He streamed the songs on his blog, and the FBI arrested him on suspicion of copyright violation.

One can easily envision Axl sitting on a throne in some castle picking up the Axl-phone (I assume he labels everything accordingly like the Adam West Batman)  and sending the FBI out like his own private pack of dogs to terminate Cogill. Axl takes Chinese Democracy very seriously.

From a legal standpoint, Cogill is probably in the wrong, but this album has been in the works for so long, it almost seems like it should come with a Creative Commons license. Cogill isn’t too worried about going to court or the punishment he could face. He told Rolling Stone, "If legal proceedings come my way, I’ll face them 100%. I’m not afraid of that. I did what I did, and I’ll face the music if I have to."

Some people think the arrest was outrageous. One person on Digg comments, "Ohhh such a vicious criminal for streaming an album. Give him capital punishment!! All the while rapists and child molesters walk the streets."

That’s another issue, but this kind of mentality about the situation is not uncommon. For the most part, people just want Axl to put out the album. Some of us don’t even care if it’s good or not anymore. We just want peace of mind, and perhaps a free Dr. Pepper.

Cogill has now pleaded guilty to a federal copyright violation.