Proposed Consent Agreement In the Matter of Music Teachers National Association, Inc. #00031

Submission Number:
Noel Engebretson
Initiative Name:
Proposed Consent Agreement In the Matter of Music Teachers National Association, Inc.
Matter Number:


This was a ridiculous assertion, investigation, and resolution. What lawyers and the FTC do NOT understand is musicians, or anything to do with the creative arts. That is okay, but just as the justice system insists, ignorance of the law is not an excuse for wrongdoing. Ignorance of the organizations and the way in which people function in those organizations is not an excuse for investigating (with a heavy hand, I will add) and finding (erroneously, I will add) that this is some sort of restraint of trade. It has not ever been any restraint of trade. As a matter of fact, it has had the opposite effect, it has protected teachers from those who would prey upon students in a weak situation, that of being adjudicated, from predatory judges. It has protected students in a weakened situation, being taught in a public forum, from being preyed upon by perceived stronger forces, that being the teachers of these classes. All that the organization has asked is that these members not exercise that power to steal students from their teachers. It has never even suggested that a student is not free to switch teachers should they become enamored with a different teacher; that would have been restrictive. It simply asked that we respect other teachers rights to peace of mind, and not actively recruit these students. I cannot understand for one second why this courtesy rule would ever become a part of any legal investigation. Thus the heavy-handedness here. The other aspect is to threaten a non-profit organization with protracted litigation at great expense, for the sake of what was a simple courtesy request. This investigation was errant in many ways, and I am surprised that it ever made it past a basic reading stage. You have accomplished nothing but to blacken your own eyes in the view of many, many people.