The RIAA Once Again Out For Justice ... Instead Of Doing Something Else That Might Really Help The Industry
November 18, 2011
In a development that most industry observers were expecting, digital music resale service ReDigi received a letter from the Recording Industry Association of America demanding, among other things, that it cease operations, hand over copies of its sales records, and "quarantine" all of its digital music so that it can't be accessed for any purpose except totting up how much ReDigi owes the record labels.
One might think that the RIAA, the music industry's association, might actually be proactive in helping the labels that fund its operations (and BIG salaries for the key execs) in seeking solutions for future revenue generation and in helping create new models for the future. But no, the RIAA just likes to do stuff like this.
If the labels actually need the RIAA to do this instead of using their own lawyers when necessary, the industry is in worse shape than imagined.
In any case, read more here: http://tiny.cc/7gf48
THE 'A-SIDE' - TRACK 2
GOOGLE'S MUSIC ... TOO LATE FOR ANY REAL IMPACT?
About Google's music service: Bloomberg's Brian Womack and Andy Fixmer are certain the search giant is nearly a decade too late to pose a credible threat to Apple's iTunes music service. Well, not absolutely certain. "The company's reach on the Web may help it succeed," they admit in a co-authored report.
Working in its favor, Google reportedly just reached an agreement with Sony Corp.'s music unit, and already has deals with Vivendi SA's Universal Music Group and EMI Group. Still, "they're coming into this market rather late in the game, where there are large, established players," Gartner analyst Ray Valdes says. "You can say it's a saturated market."
Indeed, along with Apple, Google faces competition from Amazon, which has been building its own music-download and storage service, as well as Spotify, which recently made it U.S. debut. Either way, "I doubt they'll meet with immediate success," Valdes warns, adding: "If they fail, it will take a while for that to become evident because they have enough presence to make at least slow progress for some time."
Read the rest here: http://tiny.cc/voekt
BUT YOU CAN CHECK IT OUT YOURSELF...
Google Music has gone live, taking its beta cloud-based personal music library service and adding multiple-device synching, purchasing, Google+ integration and exclusive content. Much more interesting capabilities, however, are the ability to share songs and the Artist Hub feature for musicians who want to control their own fan sales and relationships.
Check it out here: http://tiny.cc/trtbo
THE 'A-SIDE' - TRACK 3
PANDORA SEZ HALF OF THE PEOPLE IN U.S. DON'T PAY FOR MUSIC
Pandora CTO Tom Conrad revealed that his company aims to monetize the vast majority of listeners who pay little or nothing per year for music.
Conrad explained that "Over half of the U.S. doesn't pay anything for music each year." He continued that another 40% of the population only pay about $15 a year, the cost of an album or two. While there are opportunities to build businesses on the 10% that are willing to pay more, Pandora's plans to focus on monetizing the majority via advertisements. Other music companies might be wise to target the non-paying segment as well.
Read the rest here on TechCrunch: http://tiny.cc/mtmf6
THE 'A-SIDE' - TRACK 4
APPLE'S iTUNES MATCH SERVICE
Without the usual Apple fanfare about reinventing something or other "as we know it," the long-promised iTunes Match music service rolled out in an update to the iTunes library and player software on Monday.
This $25-a-year service amends the iCloud infrastructure that the company introduced with iOS 5.
Read the rest here: http://tiny.cc/r9q2i
THE 'A-SIDE' - TRACK 5
ALBUM SALES UP ... BUT AT WHAT COST?
The lower pricing strategy at retail is getting more music into the hands of consumers, though revenue from album sales remains lower than a year ago, according to Eric Garland, chief executive officer of BigChampagne.com, a Los Angeles-based music and media metrics firm.
Read the rest here on Bloomberg/BusinessWeek: http://tiny.cc/5uo65
THE 'A-SIDE' - TRACK 6
BILLBOARD WILL NOT CHART HEAVILY DISCOUNTED RELEASES ANYMORE
Albums sold for less than $3.49 and singles sold for less than 39 cents are now disqualified from the Billboard charts.
Read the rest here: http://tiny.cc/ykde6
THE 'A-SIDE' - TRACK 7
DAVE STEWART CREATIVITY APP
Musician/producer/artist Dave Stewart has collaborated with branding expert Mark Simmons on an iPad app designed to help entrepreneurs come up with innovative ideas. Named "Creativity," it includes a foreword by Virgin founder Richard Branson, interviews with Mick Jagger and Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, an interactive package of techniques and tools.
Check it out here: http://tiny.cc/0sun4
THE 'A-SIDE' - TRACK 8
ANDROID TAKING OVER MOBILE
Worldwide sales of mobile devices hit 440.5 million units in the third quarter of the year, according to fresh data from Gartner. All told, that represented a 5.6% increase year-over-year.
In what will be music to Google's ears, more than 50% of all smartphones bought by consumers in the third quarter were built on the Android OS. What's more, non-smartphone devices also performed well, according to Gartner, as they were driven by demand in emerging markets for low-cost devices from white-box manufacturers, as well as for dual-subscriber identity module devices.
Read the rest here on Gartner: http://tiny.cc/462m8
THE 'A-SIDE' - TRACK 9
CD BABY HAS PAID OUT OVER $200 MILLION TO INDIE MUSICIANS
Yup, you read it right ... $200 million.
A recent report from Hypebot announced that the company has passed the $200 million mark in total amount paid directly to musicians. Averaging $40 million a year, it expects to reach a quarter-billion dollars in 2012.
Read more here: http://tiny.cc/ill76
SOME BONUS TRACKS FOR YOUR ENJOYMENT
* Music Hall's turntable-plus-powered speaker system is ideal for analog loving audiophiles who also happen to have an iPod! Check out the system here: http://tiny.cc/osvsp
* Footage taken from the International Space Station with a special low-light 4K camera offers some of the more moving and breathtaking pictures of our tiny planet. See it here: http://tiny.cc/tnob5
* For any of you starved for "Mad Men" info, you'll welcome this short piece where Matthew Weiner discusses his plans for the series finale: Possibly a look at Don Draper in present time, at the age of 84 (though, as one commenter notes, "the way Don drinks and smokes, he's not going to make it to age 84"). If you keep up with the comments, there's also a gay-friendly joke about whom Don will eventually end up with. Read it here: http://tiny.cc/i5zd0
Short News Items ...
MORE SPIDERMAN FALLOUT:
Julie Taymor, the ousted director of the long-troubled Broadway production of Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, claims in a new interview that U2's Bono and the Edge mischaracterized her as "exhausted" and "overwrought" when the production went awry. Taymor, who is suing the show's producers, told Esquire her collaborators were working behind her back to make changes to the show.
VAN HALEN LABEL DEAL:
Van Halen has signed to Interscope Records. The news was first reported by the Hollywood Reporter.
GAGA SEZ BUH-BYE TO CREATIVE DIRECTOR:
Lady Gaga has ended her working relationship with her longtime creative director, Laurieann Gibson.
HOLLYWOOD CAN LAUGH AT ITSELF AGAIN:
Comedian Ricky Gervais, who took plenty of criticism for his relentless jokes about Hollywood celebrities in past hosting gigs for the Golden Globes, has nevertheless been asked back as the host of this year's show.
WYMAN ROLLS ON SIRIUS:
Former Rolling Stones bassist Bill Wyman is hosting a three-part series showcasing his favorite blues and rock musicians on Sirius XM Radio beginning this week.
EAGLES READY TO ROLL ON THEIR 40TH:
According to Joe Walsh, the Eagles are going to celebrate their upcoming 40th anniversary with a retrospective tour next year. Walsh says the band plans to tour for four or five months in the second half of 2012 .
Doyle Bramhall, a longtime favorite blues drummer from Austin, Texas who played with Jimmie Vaughan's first band and, later, with Stevie Ray Vaughan, has died at age 62.
The Music Industry Past, Present & Future, And The Internet I answer questions on EconTalk
I did an interview about the industry and the Internet at EconTalk with host Russ Roberts. Russ is also a professor of economics at George Mason University, blogs at Cafe Hayek, and has written three novels that teach economics. He's also the co-creator of the Keynes-Hayek rap video. (And if your understanding of the economic meltdown that occurred needs to be enlightened, this video will do it)
In the interview we talk about the evolution of the music industry, the impact of the digital revolution, and I give my reasons for believing in the virtues and potential of the Internet in enhancing the music industry. I point out, as I have many times here in the newsletter, that the internet allows numerous artists to make money from their music and it can enhance revenues from live performances by expanding an artist's base. We also discuss the challenges facing record companies and I suggest that the full potential of the Internet as a distribution channel has yet to be fully exploited. There's a lot of ground covered, but based on the comments already posted of those who have tuned in, they've enjoyed it.
Read more about it by clicking here.
Quotes of the week
"Things are looking up for me: I'm single and there's an NBA lockout -- wink!"
-- Saturday Night Live's Pedrad Nasim, spoofing Kim Kardashian and her 72-day marriage.
"I don't need to see a picture of Kurt, asshole, and I'm going to have you f**king removed if you keep throwing that up," she said to the audience member. "I'm not Kurt - I have to live with his shit, his ghost, his kid every day. Throwing that up is stupid and rude and I'll beat the f**k out of you if you do it again."
-- Courtney Love during her performance with Hole at the SWU Festival in Brazil where she launched into a tirade about Dave Grohl after spotting a fan carrying a photo of her late husband, Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain.
"The message really is about the excesses of unregulated corporate and financial market greed, and I just wonder now if the actual Occupy Wall Street movement itself is overshadowing the message."
-- Fitz and the Tantrums frontman Michael Fitzpatrick
The B-Side - 'Blips'
THE ONION (www.theonion.com) STORY OF THE WEEK:
Nation To Bring In Revenue By Offering Official United States Of America Franchise Opportunities
WASHINGTON-Amidst continued deadlock over how to rein in the federal deficit, government officials announced plans Tuesday to increase revenue by offering franchise opportunities to entrepreneurs who wish to start their own United States of America.
Banking on the popularity of its original location, the country hopes to make millions by partnering with franchisees around the world, to whom it would license the trademarked United States brand name as well as the nation's flag, motto, preserved landmarks, college sports programs, movie studios, and bicameral legislature.
Read the rest here and laugh: Click Here.
The BlogsCheck out Jerry Del Colliano's (the founder of INSIDE RADIO) daily blog, by clicking here: http://www.insidemusicmedia.blogspot.com
Check out attorney Ray Beckerman's website at: http://recordingindustryvspeople.blogspot.com where he prints news about the RIAA's ongoing activities
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