In related news: a group of suits called the COPYRIGHT ROYALTY BOARD shot down a plan by another group of suits known as the NATIONAL MUSIC PUBLISHERS ASSOCIATION to raise the per-song royalty rates artists receive from digital downloads. The increase from nine to 15 cents would have cut into the slim iTunes profit margin to such a degree that Apple hinted it might terminate the service. In case you’re curious about the stats, Apple gets about 30 cents for each track sold, keeping 10 and feeding the rest to the record label, which kicks down a paltry sum to the artist and spends the remainder on cocaine and short-sighted Luddite panic.

Elsewhere in the dystopian Internet wasteland: Aerosmith singer STEVEN TYLER has sued an anonymous weirdo fan blogger for impersonating him and disclosing “intimate details” of his life. Alas, the blog has been destroyed and the cache flushed, but reports indicate that the contents were bafflingly mundane. Damn, there go my masturbation plans for tonight.

In spicier news: the obscenity trial of Darryn Walker, the unfathomably sad British blogger who wrote an extremely graphic pornographic fictional story detailing the grisly murders of UK pop group GIRLS ALOUD, is set to get under way soon, but I’m not seeing a conviction in his future. “Girls (Scream) Aloud” just has way too much artistic merit. My favorite bit:

“The man pretended to consider Sarah’s suggestion then said ‘I'm afraid I don't see a way to let you live and cut off your sexy bits.’ ”

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