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New Online Music Push by EMI

timothy posted more than 11 years ago | from the joining-em-after-failure-to-beat dept.

Music 330

akadruid writes "EMI has signed deals with 20 top European websites to sell its music online. According to Reuters, 'Consumers will be able to make permanent copies of songs and transfer them to recordable CDs, portable music players and their computer hard drives'. This represents a major shift in policy by EMI, who previously went to great lengths to protect their music from copying. Does this mark the beginning of a major change in the music industry?"

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AND LO, EMI (-1)

WeenisMonster (664473) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792026)

EVEN YOU could not pr0st fr1st. The firstus is the wurstus. DIE DIE EMI

Adapt... (5, Insightful)

brunson (91995) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792036)

or Die

Re:Adapt... (2, Insightful)

Brandon Sharitt (667596) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792087)

Hopefully this is the year that online music really takes off.

Rhapsody (2, Informative)

theedge318 (622114) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792340)

I can't find it anywhere on their website, but Best Buy [bestbuy.com] has an advertisement for "Rhapsody" in their stores. I don't know who is promoting it. They are selling them ala Netflix, but I fear that their might be a real music company backing it. The service plan would be $19.95/mo.

Re:Adapt... (2, Insightful)

Bonker (243350) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792278)

Mod parent up Insightful.

EMI looks like it's the smart little rat running in and out between the toes of rapidly-starving dinosaurs.

The old dinosaur food-chain will dry up. It will look like it's getting more powerful, but it will be because all you can see are the major predators at the top who've eaten all the rest of the food-chain out of desperation.

Eventually, they too will starve and those who have evolved will eat their corpses.

Re:Adapt... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792321)

Silence, Zionist aggresor.

First step... next... (4, Interesting)

HeelToe (615905) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792040)

We need reasonable quality downloads. Lossless compression means big files, so watch out for the ISPs with restrictive download limits.

It would sure be nice to pick and choose what I want to download in flac.

Re:First step... next... (2, Insightful)

chrisseaton (573490) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792092)

I often see people complaining about the use of compression, but I generally encode at 196Kbs, and that is almost always fine - even on a professional sound system where you would expect to be able to pick out any imperfections.

Sure, sometimes it fails. I did a 196 encoding of a Dvorak piece and when the singer hit the really high notes the vibrato sounded like a fire alarm. But that was only once.

Re:First step... next... (1)

HeelToe (615905) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792176)

I use MD in the car. I used to use MP3 in the car. I have spent considerable time listening to both on headphones at the office. Unfortunately, I can hear the imperfections in that environment. In the car I can't, so I don't mind its use there, it's appropriate given the limited ability to discern detail, but on my home audio setup and on good headphones, I really get annoyed by the artifacts.

Re:First step... next... (2, Troll)

Pieroxy (222434) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792236)

Your statement is just... empty. What are you comparing exactly ? MD with MP3s... what MP3s? Which bitrate, which encoder....

I defy anyone to discern a 256kbps MP3 encoded with LAME from the original or even to tell there is a difference. Of course you need a true blind test for that.

Now on the other hand, lossless compression would be better to download these files, I totally agree with that. MP3 is good for *listening* only. Even a basic filter as a High/Low button or a band equalizer can make diffences audible.

Re:First step... next... (1)

cloak42 (620230) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792363)

Given the right sound equipment and a discerning ear, you can tell the difference quite easily.

Of course, that also means that you've spent thousands of dollars on your sound system and you really care about the quality of the music being played on your stereo.

But it doesn't really much matter anyway, what with the quality of engineering that's being done these days. Since most albums are being WAY overclipped (that is, mixed higher than -0dB) and are distorting anyway, and so much digital compression is being done that you'd be able to hear digital noise just from the vocal effects and equalization used, it doesn't really matter what kind of stereo you're listening on anyway.

I think the appropriate thing would be, rather than getting in a huff about the quality of downloads, we should get in a huff about the quality of the MUSIC, or at least the quality of the production on the album. After that's taken care of, we can worry a little more about the fact that compressed and lossy files are being distributed.

One thing's for certain, though: The general public is getting more and more used to crappy-sounding recordings. The larger amount of shoddy stereos and low-quality file formats is contributing a big amount to that.

of course (5, Interesting)

Oculus Habent (562837) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792041)

EMI realizes that the Internet isn't just an avenue for music theft, it's rapidly becoming the most significant way to make money with little unneccesary investment.

They provide the music, other people handle the packaging, shipping and shelfspace, if you will and they collect the money.

They don't even have to pay to have the CDs pressed or the cover art printed.

off topic... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792523)

I don't like butterscotch, but I do like vanilla. You don't see friggin holy wars over pudding, though, do you?


You would if you could manage to tie land, property, and national identities to pudding preferences.

OGG or NOTHING! (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792042)

Unless it's Free as in Free as in No Patents, No Nothing, I ain't buying! POWER TO THE PEOPLE!

Apple? (3, Interesting)

BWJones (18351) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792047)

Do you think we might have Apple to thank for this? No, seriously. Perhaps they got wind of what Universal was going to hook up and made a press announcement before the 28th.

I mean, this sort of thing should have been embraced five years ago by all of the labels.

Re:Apple? (2, Insightful)

inertia@yahoo.com (156602) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792088)

Or maybe it's the other way around.

Re:Apple? (1)

mattyohe (517995) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792107)

We will just have to wait... the 28th might not detail Universal [slashdot.org] and that could all be speculation.

Wouldn't it be sweet though if they did make this move because of apple, and then it turns out to just be a rumour?

What I want... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792050)

Is a music service charging between 10-50p for each song I download...

New songs - 50p, old catalog titles - 10p

HOW FUCKING HARD CAN THAT BE?!?!?!??!

Re:What I want... (2, Informative)

MushMouth (5650) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792472)

US Mechanical royaltys are at least 8.1 cents a song. Paid to the song writer with 3% cut going to the Harry Fox Agency for overhead of collecting the royalty. You aren't going to get such prices.

EMI 1. Apple 0 (2, Interesting)

sensate_mass (171138) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792057)

If, as rumored, Apple's new music service has significant DRM involved in it (can't copy tunes to hd, cd, etc.), this business model will completely torpedo it.

Re:EMI 1. Apple 0 (1)

jo_ham (604554) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792427)

I don't know if Apple would go this way.

Just look at iTunes - Rip, Mix, Burn. Admittedly, this was designed for CDs that you had purchased, but anything you download from an Apple-run music service would be music you have purchased.

If there's going to be any DRM it will be like that of the iPod. Or it will be Rendezvous style streaming (not copying) if you connect to other people's Macs on the network.

Just like the iPod though, it's easy to copy if you so want, but Apple aren't going to make it into a feature.

Objectivity is journalism makes me happy (5, Insightful)

reverendG (602408) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792065)

Illegal online services, kick-started by the original maverick Napster, have brought the music industry to its knees in the past few years, forcing global music sales sharply lower.

I wonder where they're getting their statistics about "global music sales sharply lower". Most of the statistics that I've seen say that the music industry is still an unbeatable juggernaut.

I suppose that the RIAA pushing new "Super-DMCA" laws through state legislatures is just a symptom of them being on their knees.

Re:Objectivity is journalism makes me happy (4, Funny)

Darth Troll (576144) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792165)

have brought the music industry to its knees
Yes, the music industry is on their knees but what they're doing down there is reaming the consumers' (and artists') cornholes.

Um... (2, Insightful)

elixx (242653) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792066)

Does this mark the beginning of a major change in the music industry?

No.

Nothing new to see here. Move along! (1)

Beautyon (214567) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792069)

You have just been PR'd.

This is of course, nothing new. FIPR just ran this story, and from the headline it looked like EMI was going to release singles for free...now THAT would have been news!

This makes little difference (5, Interesting)

confused philosopher (666299) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792073)

"Does this mark the beginning of a major change in the music industry?"

Confused Philospher says:
NO.

This is because we will have to wait years for other companies to follow suit, since few people will use the EMI service initially because of the ease of using Kazza for FREE [minus jail time and billion dollar law suits].

The music industry missed the first boat when Napster sailed.

Re:This makes little difference (1)

Red Warrior (637634) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792160)

I dunno. I rather expect that I'll use it. Unless they decide to charge $55 a song or something.

Re:This makes little difference (1)

The_K4 (627653) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792421)

I would too as long as they don't make me pay for a ton of streaming music as well! I want stuff I can DL, put on an MP3 DVD and put into the car's MP3 enabled CD/DVD player.

Re:This makes little difference (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792198)

It will be a lot easier than Kazaa though, and more reliable. As long as they charge a reasonable rate I plan on using it.

Re:This makes little difference (1)

I_redwolf (51890) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792246)

When you say easier, what exactly is it that you mean? I've seen Kazaa in use it doesn't look too hard to me :)

Re:This makes little difference (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792350)

Finding a file isn't always easy, downloading isn't always reliable.

Re:This makes little difference (2, Interesting)

Prof.Phreak (584152) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792386)

Most music on kazaa is low quality 128 mp3s. I can seriously tell the difference between a well encoded song and some crap on kazaa. If people would just encode things properly, I wouldn't buy CDs! There is only so much trouble I'm willing to go through to download a good encoding of a song... after that, I usually end up paying for the CD.

In my opinion, 128 MP3s work to their advatage as asvertising. You like the song, you wanna hear a good non-crap version of it, you go buy a CD and encode yourself a good copy.

What they should do is give away 100% free unlimited 128 MP3s (like Kazaa ones), and actually sell VBR or some high encoded stuff.

Re:This makes little difference (5, Interesting)

asscroft (610290) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792221)

know what, kazaa is slow as shit and labor intensive if you're trying to get good quality. If someone would sell me a real unprotected mp3. (Not a windows only spyware-required piece of shit.) available for download on a fast connection with guaranteed quality and a simple search/purchase/download mechanism I'd pay.

of course, then what's to stop somoene from uploading it to kazaa.

But the fact remains, as long as I can share amongst all of MY computers and MP3 Players I have no real desire to share with the universe if the price is fair.

Back when we had to buy a cd, rip, encode, and upload for 3 days on a crappy modem there was a cost that made it worth trading with others. I'll waste days of my life on artistA if you waste equal time on artisB and we'll swap. With quick high quality legal downloads for a fair price I'd rather say "go buy it yourself, here's the link".

If they can tap into that me-first (leachers abound) mentality and call it honest consumerism, they'll be loving life again. They can do so without limiting our civil liberties and suing the fuck out of everyone too.

Unfortunately, until a record company actually does something to repeal the evil fuckin dmca, I ain't buying shit from them, ever again. And I haven't since that piece of shit communist legislation was passed. FUCK YOU RIAA!!!

Re:This makes little difference (1)

ctishman (545856) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792384)

Wait, isn't the DMCA the very ANTITHESIS of a communist law?

Re:This makes little difference (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792526)

No. They are using government force to take something from one American (DMCA is a US law) and giving that something to another American to whom it does not belong.

That, by definition is socialism, of which communism is one form. While the DMCA is not a communist law, it is a socialist law. Therefore the DMCA does not qualify as being the antithesis of a communist law.

Re:This makes little difference (1)

ctishman (545856) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792588)

What, pray tell, is that "something"?

Re:This makes little difference (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792620)

Its the very antithesis of theoretical Marxism.

What I don't understand (4, Insightful)

phorm (591458) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792075)

Is how they're going to sort out whom has a legal copy of a song, and whom has an illegal copy of a song. I suppose that even if you "buy" a song online you still can't put it on kazaa, as that would be considered distribution?

But what about if you're accused of piracy when you have a vast library of legal songs? Are they going to properly cross-reference their user-list, or just continue to send nastygrams to anyone whom they suspect of having Mp3's?

IMHO, it seems terrible ironic and two-faced to be blatantly accusing mp3's etc of being piracy and profit-stealers, asking for (in Canada) huge taxation on mp3-capable storage devices, and then selling off music to run on those same devices

Re:What I don't understand (2, Interesting)

HermanZA (633358) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792199)

Well, it is even more insiduous than that. Canadians can buy the same devices and black CDs by mail order from the USA and circumvent the taxes. Also, not one penny of this tax actually reaches the music industry, so it is just another Federal tax grab...

Re:What I don't understand (4, Interesting)

glitch! (57276) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792281)

[What I don't understand] Is how they're going to sort out whom has a legal copy of a song, and whom has an illegal copy of a song....

Maybe they will watermark the downloads individually. If they were really nasty (clever?), they would embed your credit card number into the watermark as as additional deterent from file sharing. (Nah, they aren't that evil...)

At least this might cut down on the number of retards that keep claiming that "downloading copyrighted files is illegal" (So downloading a Redhat ISO is illegal then?)

Re:What I don't understand (1)

akvalentine (560139) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792413)

At least this might cut down on the number of retards that keep claiming that "downloading copyrighted files is illegal" (So downloading a Redhat ISO is illegal then?)

I think that you are in denial. You can download a RedHat iso legally because RadHat says you can. Downloading an mp3 (or whatever) of a piece of music that is owned by someone else, who hasn't given you permission to download it, is copyright infringment. I'm sorry you don't like it, but that's the way it is.

Now don't get me wrong, I think that the RIAA and familly suck, but that doesn't change the fact that they own the copyright to the music and they don't want you to download it.

Re:What I don't understand (1)

LarsG (31008) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792337)

They don't go after the downloaders, they go after the providers.

(Downloading isn't illegal according to copyright law in at least a few european countries, but woe be to the person who distributes.)

Re:What I don't understand (3, Informative)

.com b4 .storm (581701) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792482)

[...] Is how they're going to sort out whom has a legal copy of a song, and whom has an illegal copy of a song.

They could do what EMusic does, which is keep a catalog of all the music you've ever downloaded with your account. This is supposedly for convenience so you can look back and grab songs you downloaded before, or something like that. But I bet it'd be a good way of proving that you have a legit copy of a song you got from the service.

Don't believe that I have a legal right to that copy of "Hey Pachuco"? Check my EMusic history, bub. I got it fair and square.

good (1)

bryanthompson (627923) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792079)

it seems like a step in the right direction. It'll be awhile before we can really judge if it's worked, but at least it's progress for the cause, and progress is something more than we had.

Eh? (1)

unterderbrucke (628741) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792102)

What happened to apple?

Re:Eh? (1)

Daniel_Staal (609844) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792525)

Announcement to be made on the 28th. See you then.

'Bout fucking time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792111)

Subject says it all.

They have no choice... (3, Insightful)

Dr. Bent (533421) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792123)

They've been backed into a corner. It's this, or go out of business in 10 years. Of course, that's the only way you get any company to do anything; Make it the only viable financial option.

Re:They have no choice... (3, Insightful)

Acidic_Diarrhea (641390) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792218)

Go out of business? Listen, the record companies aren't as poor as they want to make themselves out to be. Record sales are supposedly down but that can't be blamed entirely on internet piracy. CD prices are up and quality is down as well. Yet the RIAA is so sure that music piracy is why they're not selling as much of their shit as they used to. I don't believe it. I'd download music and violate copyright law, if there were any being produced that was worth the bandwidth.

What is a lot more important than EMI selling their product online is lone artists selling theirs. With the widespread acceptance of the internet as a means of commerce, there will, hopefully, come a time when there's no need for the middleman. I'd much rather pay ten bucks to an artist and have that artist get all the money than make some fat cat asshole a little bit richer.

Of course, I'm still waiting on something worth buying but that's another problem altogether - and one the RIAA doesn't care about - they'll market the shit out of the shit they've got and bribe politicians into making laws that lead to suits which will finance their lifestyles since the music isn't good enough to sell anymore.

Re:They have no choice... (1)

Dyolf Knip (165446) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792497)

They are also indiscriminantly calling their customers criminals and, despite complaints by virtually everyone, introducing DRM onto CDs which at best won't play and at worst screws up hardware. This sort of behavior simply does not fly in a market with easy entry, no matter what near-monopoly is currently gripping it.

Re:They have no choice... (1)

Dr. Bent (533421) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792548)

Did I say anything about piracy? That's not the issue. The issue is that sales are down about 10%. Using the McM.B.A. portion of my brain, I figure that means they've got about 10 years left of doing what they're doing now before they go out of business. It doesn't matter if the drop in sales is due to piracy, crappy music, 9/11, the war in Iraq, or the phases of the fucking moon. The goal here is to increase sales (or, at least, lower costs) by moving to a new delivery system. Which is what they should have done 5 years ago.

RIAA pull, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792128)

RIAA pull, EMI push. Together we make the internet go 'round.

not MP3's.. (4, Interesting)

CySurflex (564206) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792145)

At first I read this and I thought we're talking about downloading MP3's.

I thought "wow someone finally gets it! They know they have no choice". I clicked on the article hoping to find a link to one of these sites selling the music, and actually thought I'd buy an album to check it out.

After careful scrutiny, I noticed this line from the article:

We are using new technology to benefit both artists and consumers by massively expanding the amount of music available securely online,"


This is not MP3's nor is it Ogg, and I am not going to buy anything that limits me in any way.

Re:not MP3's.. (4, Interesting)

splanky (598553) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792234)

>I am not going to buy anything that limits me in any way.

Have you ever bought a MS O/S? Talk about limiting! At least CDs you can play on a bunch of CD players... If MS ruled the music biz, you'd have to buy one CD for each CD player you had. And if you CD player broke, you'd need to buy a new one since your CD's license is attached to your now defunct CD player.

Re:not MP3's.. (4, Funny)

$carab (464226) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792485)

Have you ever bought a MS O/S?

Wait...you mean like....purchase something digital?

Fuck that. Gimme Kazaa Lite and IRC any day.

Re:not MP3's.. (5, Interesting)

tuffy (10202) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792245)

We are using new technology to benefit both artists and consumers by massively expanding the amount of music available securely online,"

This is not MP3's nor is it Ogg, and I am not going to buy anything that limits me in any way.

What the word "securely" means in this context is difficult to determine. It might mean the music itself is somehow secure (Digital Restrictions Management, etc.) or it might simply mean the purchasing itself is secure (SSL). I'm going to wait to hear the nuts & bolts of this thing before jumping to conclusions.

Though I'm not buying anything packaged in a closed format.

Re:not MP3's.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792354)

puh-leez.

you know exactly which meaning of "secure" the record companies mean:

their security.

not yours.

Re:not MP3's.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792453)

How about if I buy the song and then pull it down from a P2P network in a format I can actually listen to?

We know what their answer to that one will be.

Huh? Limited? (2, Insightful)

phorm (591458) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792283)

Under the EMI deal, consumers will be able to make permanent copies of songs and transfer them to recordable CDs, portable music players and their computer hard drives. Consumers can also purchase singles online once they hit radio airwaves.

You can burn it, you can put it on a portable (assumes this means you can get it as mp3 or a player-compatible format), and you can put it on your drive.

I'm fairly sure the secure part means the billing/transaction system.

Re:Huh? Limited? (1)

CySurflex (564206) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792409)

You're right - but when a press release has the word "new technology" and "secure" in the same sentence....it's a pretty good chance there's DRM involved.

Re:Huh? Limited? (1)

Dyolf Knip (165446) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792545)

I'm kinda split. On the one hand, if they were releasing it in a totally open format, you'd think they'd make a point of saying so, right? On the other hand, these are the same guys who think that DRM is a perfectly logical and completely practical system for widespread public usage and it honestly might not occur to them that saying "We aren't using this piece of shit at all" would actually be a good marketing strategy.

Re:Huh? Limited? (1)

Triv (181010) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792596)

YOu mean like an Audible (.aa) file? They're more open than most, I agree - I can transfer a .aa to my iPod or listen to it on my computer. I can Burn it to a CD, but only once. That sucks, a bit, but still - not much of a problem for hour long radio programs, but it'd suck just a bit for 3 minutes songs and mix CDs. What I can't do is transfer the file itself - the host computer needs to be enabled with your account # and password for it to work and you're only allowed a small number of computers to do that on.

Guess the bottom line is, we'll see.

Triv

Re:not MP3's.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792599)

I don't know about you, but I don't want MP3s. Those stink.

I want data compressed with lossless algorithms.

Gimme wavs.

Or flacs.

But no MP3s.

Good for them (1)

0x00000dcc (614432) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792200)

Now I might end my CD-buying boycott, but only for EMI. The rest of you's in that biz can suffer ...

Too good to be true (1)

Neophytus (642863) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792201)

The cds will probably still "cost" £10 to buy, and the same measly sum of cash will go to the artists. Something is being done, but it will still be the same scam the record industry currently is. Only when 75+% of the fees go to the artists will I but cds at current prices.

Re:Too good to be true (1)

Jason1729 (561790) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792398)

The only way to get 75% to the artists is to cut out the middlemen. I've recently gotten involved in the board game development industry. The numbers I've seen are that 50% of the retail price goes to the retailer, 25% goes to the wholesaler, the rest has to go into manufacturing, and possibly paying an agent. You're lucky to see a 5% royalty.

If out of a $15 CD, 75% goes to the artist that means there's only $3.75 to cover the cost of manufacturing, and profits along the distribution channel. Even if you deal directly with resellers so there's only one link in the chain, that means the retailer is paying $$12.25 (75% plus a $1 manufacturing fee) for an item they can only make $2.75 on. Out of the $2.75, the retailer still has to pay their costs to keep the store open. Rental of the location, employees, cash register ink, etc. If the artist takes 75%, the retailers will go bankrupt, then the artists won't have anywhere to sell their material and they will get 0%.

Jason
ProfQuotes [profquotes.com]

Robbie Williams anyone? (4, Interesting)

T-Kir (597145) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792214)

Well after the english singer Robbie Williams [bbc.co.uk] claimed that piracy was 'great', and his record company (EMI) went ballistic.... it is quite an interesting change of tact from them.

Either that or they realised that expanding their online availability might be due to the new report [www.enn.ie] that online downloads of songs will impact on the national pop charts?

Just my 0.02 downloaded songs (or cents/pence).

In the name of the USA... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792219)

...nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!! hehehe.. Maybe the RIAA can stop them...

This is obviously a joke. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792252)

I'm a representative of the RIAA and I don't like this. I'll have to discuss this with our lawyers, special forces and the President. We won't let them hurt our money.

Grateful Dead (5, Insightful)

LamerX (164968) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792228)

I don't know how many of you here have ever heard of this band called the Grateful Dead, but they didn't sell hardly any albums. Thier biggest hit was in the 80's, which was "Touch of Grey". During this time, they made thier money by working. That's right, they did work. They went out and toured, and performed for people, and managed to be the highest grossing band for years. They encouraged people to record thier music, and distribute is.

CDs are nothing more than advertisements for bands. Bands should make thier money working (i.e. touring, concerts, etc), and not sitting down at one recording session and cranking out 10 bajillion CDs.

People that want the cover art are going to be willing to pay for it anyways. But the rest of us who like to go to concerts and support the band by going to concerts should be able to do so, and even leave with a recording of the concert as a fond memory.

Re:Grateful Dead (1)

Zangief (461457) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792349)

But not everyone like to go to concerts, but that does not means they can't support the bands they like.

Re:Grateful Dead (4, Informative)

splanky (598553) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792365)

The idea of that sounds great, but unfortunately in reality, over 95% of bands do not make money touring. I work with tons of small localish bands, and can say here is how the current biz model works for small, medium, and large bands.

Small (i.e. local bands)
1. May break-even on their CD after recording costs. Some even make some decent cash on the CDs if they sell more than 2K of them.
2. Unlikely to get any decent amount of ASCAP/BMI money.
3. Lose money playing out. Lucky to get a beer for a show.

Medium (i.e. developing artist - sales under 900K)
1. Lose major cash on the CD. Label invents big dough in videos and stuff hoping to push them to Large sized act.
2. Make a bit of dough from ASCAP/BMI if they get radio play.
3. Band breaks even playing out generally because the label generally underwrites their shows (called a guarantee) in hopes that it will drive CD sales. If the label has given up on CD sales, the band loses big touring.

Large Act (over 900k):
1. Either make huge cash or no cash on their CDs. The no cash ones are like MJ where the label spent massive dough promoting and producing the album but saw sales that would make money with most artists, but because they poured so much dough into the album, they lose.
2. Almost all large acts make good dough off of ASCAP/BMI.
3. Only the acts who have a number of huge selling albums or extensive, extensive touring history make huge cash here. but when they do get to that level (i.e. rolling stones) they make massive, massive cash.

Re:Grateful Dead (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792373)

*cough* The Beatles *cough*

Re:Grateful Dead (1)

gosand (234100) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792378)

CDs are nothing more than advertisements for bands. Bands should make thier money working (i.e. touring, concerts, etc), and not sitting down at one recording session and cranking out 10 bajillion CDs.

Bands *DO* make their money by going out and working. What you described is how the record industry makes money, not the artist.

What will break the RIAA is if a few artists go it alone, don't sign a deal with the devil, and make it big. If others see it is possible, they may follow suit. Of course, that presumes that it is possible to succeed without the RIAA's blessing.

Re:Grateful Dead (1)

k3v0 (592611) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792480)

Ani Difranco has been pretty successful in her endeavors. She realized the RIAA wasn't interested in her music, so she made it all herself. So it is not totally impossible to exist outside the RIAA

huh? (1)

ipjohnson (580042) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792513)

the recording industry doesn't make money off the band touring. They make it off selling cd's. Bands like the greatful dead and phish made/make most of there money off of concert tickets.

Re:Grateful Dead (1)

k3v0 (592611) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792455)

And then, if you are a cool Grateful Dead song writer, you can start the EFF, and become even cooler.

Re:Grateful Dead (1)

goober (120298) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792594)

In a recent interview for Rolling Stone, Jon Fishman of Phish expressed the opinion that (I'm paraphrasing) if you're a musician who relies on album sales to make a living, you're doing something wrong.

Some on ought to su.....give a slap on the back (1)

Zerocool3001 (664976) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792255)

Finally they're slowly coming around to the idea that maybe they can't squeeze the life out of the downloaded music industry. Like so much before, now they can charge you for one song. Now your buying a CD, one song at a time, through the thrill of downloading!, without the CD itself!. Do'h. Of course in other news today, EMI sues the venture capitalists that backed Napster, trying to discourage it else where and take over the business! Tricky!

Death of the industry... (4, Insightful)

Eric_Cartman_South_P (594330) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792264)

..but not before we all get sued and laws mark us all as criminals.
Here is the main reason why I think the Music Biz is scared of technology, especailly when downloading is the "normal" way to purchase music:

*Large labels get web site and have music for download.
*Indipendant artist also makes website, has music for download.

And there you go... indi-artist and Brittney spears on the same equal footing. Suddenly the labels loose control of what gets distribution (downloads), what gets airtime (net radio), and that is where the money generation is reborn. The big money is not the few million off of an artist, but in the multiplication of said millions over MANY artists they can make "big" and push onto TRL and control. Oh, and if anyone actually thinks TRL (Total Request Live, a v-e-r-y popular MTV show here in the States) plays what you actualy vote for, you're an idiot. TRL is a marketing tool that plays mostly what you want, but is used to push no-names like P. Diddy's little boy-band on top very quickly. "Look everyone, B2K is #1 on TRL! You all love them!" And then little boys and girls run to the store because "everyone" who is "kewl" must be listenting to those dancing crackheads.

Yes, you do detect some envy. Brilliant minds created TRL and I'm sure every artist that wants to push a CD pays payola to TRL in huge ways. Brilliant business. Wish I thought of it.

Re:Death of the industry... (1)

splanky (598553) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792393)

If that was the case, MP3.com would have some huge successes... They haven't... Because, sad as this is, most of the value in big name artists is in the marketing --- *not* the music.

Re:Death of the industry... (1)

1000101 (584896) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792519)

i wouldn't be surprised if trl did this, but do actually have proof that they do? or is this just your conspiracy theory speculation?

a shot at a conspiracy theorist guess (5, Interesting)

dAzED1 (33635) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792269)

I'm not much of a conspiracy theorist, but I'm going to make a tongue-in-cheek jab at a wild "what if" here...

Is how they're going to sort out whom has a legal copy of a song, and whom has an illegal copy of a song. I suppose that even if you "buy" a song online you still can't put it on kazaa, as that would be considered distribution?

What if they were just trying to track down the distributors? It would be SOO easy to put a signature on each track they allow someone to download. Then, they just connect to all the various file-sharing places, download songs, and analyze them. They find out who put their tracks out there. Then they prosecute those people.

This would be SOO easy to do, too. I mean...geeze...ESPECIALLY if they ake the people play the downloaded tracks with a special codec they have to download, that has a private key in it...but even without that, you can still sign a file without encrypting it, and just wait and see who's files get shared. Then when you arrest those people and charge them $10,000 per shared song, you take care of the problem from the other end. When people have 100Gigs of MP3's, there's almost no chance they have even 10% of the cd's to back them up. Someone, somewhere, ripped those cd's and originally shared them. So don't just go after the people who continue to share things they've never had - those go on and on. Go after the ones who do the original ripping.

Decent conspiracy theory?

Re:a shot at a conspiracy theorist guess (1)

dAzED1 (33635) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792291)

I'd like to see two different people buy and then download the same song, and then compare the two files. Now that I think of it, this signature thing probably isn't all that wild. I bet you'll find the two files are different...anyone? Maybe I'll just do two accounts on my own, for fun.

No! (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792279)

An EMI representative has just released this statement: "Whoops, our bad. That was really a joke e-mail, you know, one of those 'this will never happen because it's so ha-ha funny' emails. No, we still embrace the 'you are thieves, not customers' philosophy."

DUPE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792280)

Didn't BMG already have such ambitions with napster and was frightened away from it by forces only anti-american people would name?

possible reason (4, Insightful)

tandr (108948) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792295)

Does this mark the beginning of a major change in the music industry?
Could be. As pure speculation for the possible reason: assuming that Apple will buy Universal, they are afraid of "next big move" -- Univapple (Appleversal?) will be selling music online just like that -- no protection, unlimited copy etc. So, my WAG is that we are witneses of the beginning of the new pricewar.

ONLINE MUSIC SOON? TRY "NOW" (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792304)

http://btplusplus.sourceforge.net/ (Bittorrent)

http://doa2.host.sk/ (Kazaa lite)

http://www.gnucleus.com/ (Open P2P)

http://www.overnet.com/ (Nice too!)

http://www.gnutellanews.com/ (News on P2P)

Enjoy!

Let's see here (0, Troll)

Joe the Lesser (533425) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792314)

Phase 1: Offer to sell mp3s which can be acquired for free elsewhere.

Phase 2: ????

Phase 3: Profit!!!

same old BS... (5, Insightful)

Connie_Lingus (317691) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792334)


Illegal online services, kick-started by the original maverick Napster, have brought the music industry to its knees in the past few years, forcing global music sales sharply lower...


How many more time is the RIAA gonna try to stuff this crap down our throats and have us burp up sympathy?? Here are just a few of the reasons why a drop of sales in not at all necessarily due to downloaded music...

1. The most obvious of these is the drop in economy, with similar sales slumps in the last econo-drop of the early '90s.

2. Secondly, the increase in games and DVD sales is a contributing factor. With DVD's being, in many cases, cheaper than a music CD, their is much more value in a DVD than a typical CD.

3. Last, but not least, radio is highlighted as a problem due to its short play lists and the difficulty in getting playtime for new artists. Has anyone else noticed not that ClearChannel owns about everything, only about 20-30 bands ever get airplay??

I suppose EMI is stepping in the right direction, but IMHO its too little, too late. The future of music will probably have something to do with corporate sponserships, where hit songs are considered a form of advertising and bands are reduced to touring ad billboards where huge multinationals will "own" popular acts.

Re:same old BS... (4, Informative)

splanky (598553) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792435)

As somebody working in the music biz, I feel a little bit like I work at a buggy whip manufacturer or something as we are perhaps a business destined for the history books...

Anyway, I agree with your three points--- especially #2. At the store I work at, DVDs and games are going through the roof. Some in the music biz argues that that's because they can't be pirated, but I think it's simpler than that: customers like video games better than a CD and would rather spend 50 bucks on a game than buy 3 CDs.

Re:same old BS... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5792583)

3 CDs for $50? Last time I went to purchase a CD, nearly a year ago, they wanted nearly $20 each, before tax! Also, games which are more than 6 months old are often in the $30-40 range. CD prices don't seem to drop as the stuff gets old.

The already can! (3, Insightful)

use_compress (627082) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792361)

'Consumers will be able to make permanent copies of songs and transfer them to recordable CDs, portable music players and their computer hard drives'

We already can-- it's called an analouge loop-back. Unless analouge sound cards are suddenly outlawed I don't see you ever won't be able to make copies of music on your computer.

Re:The already can! (1)

Mostly a lurker (634878) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792433)

Unless analouge sound cards are suddenly outlawed I don't see you ever won't be able to make copies of music on your computer.

Well, I think the 'master plan' is to have a hardware architecture that will restrict the circumstances under which the sound card will work. Whether this will succeed is a very interesting question. We shall know in a couple of years.

as PIL would say (0, Offtopic)

dnaSpyDir (167208) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792452)

"good bye I&M" - Johnny Rotten

pay x and download what you want (1)

192939495969798999 (58312) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792529)

Sounds like they got what they wanted... if this really works, it will make buying music a lot easier. i can buy 10 tracks, all from different artists, and burn them all to one cd. No more buying 10 cd's to get 10 hit songs... sounds like a smart move on their part. they'll save a ton of money on putting out whole albums vs. just releasing the hit online, which costs effectively nothing.

Only for show, perhaps? (2, Insightful)

iabervon (1971) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792530)

It's a number of European websites. One might think that they would do this in the US, since there are some people here who might want to get music online, but no. My guess is that they're trying to soften their stance in order to make DMCA-equivalents seem less bad in places that are considering them. Their position in backing copyright laws in the EU is currently sort of, "We have some music, which we don't bother to try to sell, and we try to make money by suing people. We need new laws to make this model viable." Actually selling something might make them look better.

mr. lydon said it best (1)

Frymaster (171343) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792567)

There's unlimited supply
and there is no reason why
I tell you it was all a frame
they onl1y did it 'cos of fame -
Who? EMI

Time to get my rant on! (5, Interesting)

lateralus (582425) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792584)

From the article: "...giving them access to most songs on today's top-selling charts.". "them" being the consumers.

I could not care less about the top-selling quote artists unquote. I want EMI's back catalog. Unlike the material world the Internet does not entail the costs of reprinting, repackaging and redistributing out of print material.

I will not get exited and more importantly I will not open my wallet until I see that the record labels are making an effort. There are ways to make music better through Internet distribution. As long as I sense that the music labels take care of numero uno first, so will I!

How can music be better? I'm glad you asked.

Small artists can get published for free through major labels and the second they catch on they can start selling. It sure beats touring like Black Flag did. The overhead of publishing a number of small new bands with a couple of songs each on an EMI server farm will be negligible.

If the user has bandwidth to spare uber-high fidelity downloads should be an option. We are not limited to CD quality on the net. High paying consumers can have custom stereo/mono/bitrate/hz files generated from the masters real time. These custom packages can be downloaded or burnt onto DVD and mailed. Will this allow you to get a perfect master and facilitate piracy? No more than high fidelity vinyl. 99.9% of the people that spend big bucks buying a custom remastered 60GB version of Jethro Tull's "Thick as a Brick" will not be disposed to spread it around until the technology allows them to.

To reiterate, I want back catalogs and so do most serious music lovers. I cannot imagine people buying rare Hendrix, King Crimson and Brittney Spears in one group.

Maybe "chart toppers" should be printed on disposable CDs? The music will be irrelevant in weeks anyway so why print them on the same material that you print real music?

This is kinda like.... (1)

RightInTheNeck (667426) | more than 11 years ago | (#5792617)

When scientists come out once a month with an anouncement along the lines of..."when we tossed some mice into nekkid space they looked like they were swimming for a while then they imploded"....in other words its sounds cool but again how will it effect my everyday life? The record companies would be smart to start doing more of this with thier entire catalog....people would be more than happy to burn thier own cds and print out thier own cover art if you let them.
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