Bambergers voice gratitude

To Phoenixville -

Our family will always remember and be forever grateful for the prayers, condolences and support of our friends and neighbors who comforted and strengthened us through our darkest days when we suddenly lost Pete.

Old friends ... new friends ... business friends ... volunteer friends ... you all opened your hearts and tried to make us a little less sad.

We thank you all from the bottom of our hearts and ask you to keep us in your thoughts and prayers; hopefully time will help heal.

Most sincerely and gracefully,

Jonni Bamberger

and Brent, Greg, Kurt and Megan

Cohen's service deserves praise

This letter is in response to recent news that Barbara Cohen will be retiring from the Phoenixville Area Chamber of Commerce at the end of the year. I've had the great privilege of working with Barbara for years now, in her capacity at the Chamber and as the head of the Phoenixville Area Economic Development Corporation (PAEDCO), to coordinate and foster the many private and public partnerships that have Phoenixville poised for an economic and social renaissance. During this time, I've learned just how much Barbara truly loves this town and how concerned she is with preserving its historic treasures as she constantly searches for ways to inject Phoenixville with new possibilities, new opportunities and new life. I congratulate Barbara on her years of unselfish service to the people of Phoenixville, her dedication to the community and her tireless desire to see this historic steel town grow and prosper in the 21st Century.

Rep. Jim Gerlach (PA-6)

West Whiteland

Dean's guest column was excellent

I want you to know how much I appreciate the excellent article in the July 7 edition of The Phoenix, an Honest Conversation on Race Issues, by Gov. Howard Dean, M.D.

Many of us in the Phoenixville area care deeply about racial justice, healing and reconciliation. Articles such as this help to educate and create understanding about the complex issues of racism.

Thank you for choosing this article for publication.

Janet Jepsen

Record companies overplay music 'piracy'

The record companies tell us that music "pirates" are "stealing" songs online, but that version of the story ignores reality and blindly parrots Hollywood spin. The reality: when you pay $16 for a CD, the musician gets about $1 - if they're lucky. Many major label artists get nothing at all.

The "Big 5" major labels pay radio stations to play their songs (and only their songs). Payola, once a scandal, is now standard practice, and the Big 5 use their control of radio playlists to force terrible contracts on musicians.

The major labels have been scamming musicians for decades so their claim that filesharing hurts artists rings hollow. These companies' real worry is that the Internet makes them unnecessary.

There's no justification for lawsuits against families: a Voluntary Collective License (VCL) system would let Internet providers offer "all-you-can-eat" downloads for a flat fee of $5/month, and labels would get paid for each song. Total revenue would exceed what the major labels currently earn, but they'll never accept it. Why? Because the new system would make it easy to be a successful musician without signing a major label contract.

R.K. Mallik

Lansdale

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