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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk chefcraig's Avatar
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    Rather Than Suing Customers, Desperate Music Industry May Simply Give The Shit Away

    Music industry weighs giving away music

    By EMMA VANDORE, AP Business Writer
    1 hour, 56 minutes ago

    After years of fighting the Wild West of freely downloaded music, the mainstream music industry welcomed a former desperado to their annual schmoozefest Monday, highlighting the difficulty of their search for a solution to plunging CD sales.

    And that solution might be: give music away legally and find another way such as advertising to make money.

    Participation was down at the annual MIDEM music business conference at the seaside resort of Cannes, reflecting the failure of digital music sales to make up for crumbling revenues and the billions of dollars being lost to music piracy illegal downloads outnumber the number of tracks sold by a factor of 20 to 1 according to industry body IFPI.

    Yet the theater was packed when Janus Friis co-founder of Kazaa, the music-sharing service once reviled by record levels addressed participants.

    Friis, who was presented as an Internet entrepreneur and a grandfather of digital music distribution, gave his backing to the latest venture making a lot of noise at MIDEM: Qtrax, which shows both the interest in making giveaways pay and the difficult of putting the deals together.

    A revamped online ad-supported file-sharing service, Qtrax promises to offer unlimited, free music downloads. It was launched amid a blizzard of publicity in Cannes, including champagne, snazzy slogans and invite-only concerts from celebrities including James Blunt and LL Cool J.

    After lunch with Qtrax CEO Allan Klepfisz on Saturday, Friis said he would have liked to create "an advertising supported service" for Kazaa if only the record labels had given their blessing.

    "We were trying to do the same things," he told delegates.

    "But we couldn't do it. The timing was just like, so off."

    Yet even as record labels start embracing new technologies Sony BMG Music Entertainment became the last major music label to start selling music online without copy protection this month Qtrax showed Cannes the birthing process can be extremely difficult.

    The website service had not even gone live when Warner Music Group Corp. issued a statement denying Qtrax's claims it had given the service permission to give away its music.

    Two other major recording companies, Universal Music Group and EMI Group PLC, later confirmed they did not have licensing deals in place with Qtrax, noting discussions were still ongoing.

    A call to Sony BMG Music Entertainment was not immediately returned. Thomas Hesse, president of global digital business and U.S. sales at the label, is quoted by Qtrax as saying "we have completed this agreement with Qtrax."

    On Sunday, Klepfisz admitted discussions with the labels were not easy.

    "A colonoscopy is relatively painless in comparison," he told participants.

    Qtrax, which had claimed it had backing from all the major record labels, is expected to issue a statement later Monday.

    The New York-based service was among several peer-to-peer file-sharing applications that emerged following the shutdown of Napster, the pioneer service that enabled millions to illegally copy songs stored in other music fans' computers.

    Qtrax shut down after a few months following its 2002 launch to avoid potential legal trouble. The latest version still lets users tap into file-sharing networks to search for music, but downloads come with copy-protection technology known as digital-rights management, or DRM, to prevent users from burning copies to a CD and calculate how to divvy up advertising sales with labels.

    Downloads can be stored indefinitely on PCs and unlike several competing services be transferred onto portable music players.

    The website started offering limited service Monday morning, although users will have to wait until Feb. 29 for portability. An "iPod solution" for Apple Inc's popular player won't be available until April 15, Qtrax said.

    For an industry that has traditionally relied on paid-for services, advertising was greeted cautiously in Cannes as a replacement for consumers' cash.

    "I would like anybody to succeed in this area but there are big challenges," said John Kennedy, CEO of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry, or IFPI. "I don't see how Qtrax has resolved the challenge of providing adequate revenues."

    Steve Purdham CEO of We7, the ad-funded music download service backed by Peter Gabriel, said advertising is catching on slowly.

    A year ago at Cannes "I was told there was no way any ad-supported model would work," he said.

    "The conversations that are going on now are much more open. In the next twelve months, although ad-funded today is economically not really 100 percent viable," it is likely to become "significant" as "an additional model to the industry."

    While the record labels' battles against internet entrepreneurs like Friis may not have won them consumers, the experience may yet help help stamp out piracy.

    Scarred by his legal fight with the music industry, which cost Kazaa $115 million, Friis says he has gone straight with his new venture, Joost, which delivers video over the Internet onto PCs under deals with content providers including Viacom, CBS, CNN, the NHL, Sony and others.

    "When we started Joost we certainly didn't want another, like, five years of World War Four litigation with the entertainment industry so we were kind of had to choose to do it in a very legitimate way which ultimately is going to be the best business."


    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080128/...a42lqmimqs0NUE
    "The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man."
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  2. #2
    Eruption
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    They can do WHATEVER the fuck they want to do to try and spur sales. The only thing that is going to work is QUALITY MUSIC!! I don't see this happening anytime soon. I haven't bought myself a CD in a year OR downloaded music either. I just can't bring myself to give the labels any money if they aren't going to give me anything worth listening to. There are a few gems here and there but they are usually on indy labels. I will be purchasing the new Black Crowes on March 4th but other than that I can't see myself spending a dime on anything new.
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  3. #3
    Eruption lal5150's Avatar
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    amen to that brother, the labels sold themselves out for a quick buck and its finally caught up to them . i cant remember the last cd i bought . they burnt whatever bridge they had with the real consumer . let the lollipop and bubble gum group support you.
    they hate if your the same , and they hate you if your different- evh

  4. #4
    Top Of The World sinkiller's Avatar
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    I don't download at all. I rarely buy a CD either. I do buy a lot of DVD's for the interviews and extra content, in addition to the live music. When I am driving, I find putting those into the SUV DVD player and just listening to them is just as good as the CD in some cases.

    I like the ability to put all my CD's on a hard drive and then create my mixes. I do a LOT of that. I think that really killed my drive to buy new stuff, because I could cull out the inferior stuff and just focus.

    Not sure what the music industry can do to save themselves, except, as you say, start putting out a competitive product.

    They strangled themselves with the proliferation of manufactured product clearly designed to pander to the greatest number of tastes, and in so doing diluted themselves to the vanishing point.

    Its their fault nobody buys it anymore, but it may be a little bit my fault for just not staying current like I used to.

  5. #5
    Atomic Punk chefcraig's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sinkiller View Post
    ...Its their fault nobody buys it anymore, but it may be a little bit my fault for just not staying current like I used to.
    In a way that represents sort of chicken/egg sort of argument...If the music had been dynamic and worthwhile, would that have been enough to compell many from losing interest in the first place? I don't believe that you, I or any of us that stopped purchasing cd's in droves bear any complicity in the music industry's plight. If "staying current" means purchasing utter hogwash from talent-free "artists", then allow me my dignity, for I'll happily remain a luddite.
    "The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable man."
    George Bernard Shaw

  6. #6
    Atomic Punk jimmy812's Avatar
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    ..just another reason why Van Halen needs to release an album of new material.
    2-time Fantasy Baseball Champion.

  7. #7
    Eruption =VH=316's Avatar
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    04.02.14 @ 04:23 PM
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    I've downloaded music a lot. Nowhere near as much as most people,not like millions of songs or anything like that. My biggest problem is,why should I have to pay $15 and up for a disc with 2 good tunes on it and 10 filler tracks? If i am gonna spend my money on that disc,it better have 90% good material that is worth paying for. That just simply isn't the case these days. there are a few artists/groups that still put out a really strong disc full of quality music,and i'm glad to shell out the cash for it,but knowing about it is so hard because radio just doesn't play ANYTHING that isn't "popular" at the time, so it's really difficult to learn about some of the music other than the internet.

    Example of what is totally sickening:
    At work,we usually listen to a rock station in the morning,country in the mid day,and classic rock in the afternoon.
    Rock station: in 3 hours,hearing Seether's Fake it 3 times....and of course,the only song off their album they will play for like 3 months straight. Drilling it into people's heads that it is a great tune and that their album MUST be good(which i'm told it's not,btw.....rest of album is weak?). Same with the country stations and the bubble gum stations.

    My biggest gripe with people bitching about downloading stuff illegally is the music that isn't made anymore. I couldn't go anywhere around here and find Helix,Keel,Black N Blue,Electric Boys.........stuff like that. Music that I LIKE to listen to. Basically,if it ain't NOW,it ain't for sale......which leads to MY downloading.

    I DID download Sebastian Bach's Angel Down album and am very impressed. BUT,it isn't for sale anywhere here,unless I really want to dig. I will be shelling out the money to order it though and give them/him the money he deserves for putting out (IMO) a very good album. Put out a quality disc,people WILL buy it.
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  8. #8
    Hot For Teacher mike-o's Avatar
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    This is an awful idea. If they do this, they're going to jack up the prices on merchandise and tickets, and people will stop buying everything alltogether. Then music will die.

    They need to realize that the problem is what they're trying to sell.

  9. #9
    On Fire 3_6_9 time's Avatar
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    Sebastian Bach's new CD is available at Target, Best Buy, Circuit City, FYE and many other fine retailers if you don't find it you should ask one of the worthless employees. I work for the record label and I know these stores carry it. Although I have had this argument MANY MANY times with other linkers i will re-iterate. If a band is signed off the strength of one (or a few) songs and then can't produce an album's woth of "hits" it still has to be put out. VH III is a perfect example. Who is to blame for that? The record label or Eddie? Maybe a little bit of both. Bands used to be able to record a record every year or two and put out a quality product - but it was only 30 minutes of music. Now they take 3,4,5 years try to squeeze 60-70 minutes onto a disc (spending thousands of dollars in the studio) and it just doesn't work. As for pandering - hasn't there always been those types of groups? For every Backstreet Boys and N' Sync there is an Osmonds, Bay City Rollers, Chris Atkins, Andy Gibb, Ricky Nelson etc, etc, etc.

  10. #10
    Atomic Punk WinterlessIceness's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mike-o View Post
    Then music will die.
    Music hadn't been for sale until mid-XXth century. Don't take too much responsibility predicting the future of it. It's not down to fucking sales.

  11. #11
    Atomic Punk
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    I've downloaded some Van Halen boots and that's it.

    I know I sound old but Vinal kicks ass on CDs and digital downloads are even worse. Why waste my time with substandard material?

    If it's something rare and downloading is the only way I can get it then I download.
    "Nothing is ever what it seems but everything is exactly what it is." - B. Banzai


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  12. #12
    On Fire 3_6_9 time's Avatar
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    I totally support that Axx. I too am forced to download something if it is out of print (you can only troll the used cd stores and cut out bins for so long). As for people who download shit that you can roll up to any store and buy-they are stealing scumbags. I don't care if you only like 2 songs. Download those 2 songs from iTunes. At least you are paying for what you want.

  13. #13
    Atomic Punk
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    Quote Originally Posted by evans5150 View Post
    They can do WHATEVER the fuck they want to do to try and spur sales. The only thing that is going to work is QUALITY MUSIC!! I don't see this happening anytime soon. I haven't bought myself a CD in a year OR downloaded music either. I just can't bring myself to give the labels any money if they aren't going to give me anything worth listening to. There are a few gems here and there but they are usually on indy labels. I will be purchasing the new Black Crowes on March 4th but other than that I can't see myself spending a dime on anything new.

    Couldn't agree more. It's been a while since I bought any new music. (I will be buying that Crowes album though )

    If it's good, I buy the cd. $12 isn't the end of the world, and if you're afraid that it's one good song and 10 filler songs, preview the songs on Amazon or iTunes before you buy. There's really no excuse for stealing.

    Oh well.

 

 

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