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Music Industry Attacks Free Prince CD

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the money-for-nothing dept.

Businesses 667

Mike writes "You might not like Prince, but he's planning on giving away a free CD in a national British newspaper. Harmless publicity, right? The music industry disagrees. Executives are practically going insane over the idea and are threatening to 'retaliate'. 'The Artist Formerly Known as Prince should know that with behavior like this he will soon be the Artist Formerly Available in Record Stores. And I say that to all the other artists who may be tempted to dally with the Mail on Sunday,' said Entertainment Retailers Association spokesman Paul Quirk, who also said it would be 'an insult' to record stores. Shouldn't an artist be able to give away his own music if he wants to without fear of industry retaliation?"

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Please retaliate. (5, Insightful)

daeg (828071) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691529)

The more bad press you give us, the more ammunition bands have to never sign with you in the first place. Keep it up, you're doing a better job at killing yourselves than we music lovers could ever do!

Re:Please retaliate. (0, Offtopic)

j0nkatz (315168) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691609)

The real question is...

Will it run on iPhone?!?!

Re:Please retaliate. (5, Funny)

Adambomb (118938) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691631)

So what you're saying is the more they tighten their grip, the more stars will slip through their fingers? =D

Re:Please retaliate. (5, Interesting)

Ngarrang (1023425) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691699)

Prince is rich. He is content with his career. He was already in one tizzy with the labels and bolted, which made him more money. He became Prince again, made more money. He already owns his own recording studio. Okay, so he may lose a distributor or two. Prince has never shown himself to care about the NORMAL way of doing things.

Re:Please retaliate. (5, Insightful)

Stamen (745223) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691981)

Yeah, I agree. I don't particularly like his music, but I'm inclined to buy a CD just to support him. If an artist with Prince's power, can't create some art, and give it away (or do whatever else they darn well please), then what hope is there for "lesser" artists to be able to enjoy their freedoms.

I wasn't a fan before, but I am now.

Re:Please retaliate. (1, Insightful)

AutopsyReport (856852) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691783)

The more bad press you give us, the more ammunition bands have to never sign with you in the first place.

Not so quick. Most artists don't have the luxury to go it alone because it's very hard to breakthrough without support (and thieving) from the industry. Especially for up-and-coming artists, it's much easier to sign with a label than it is to eek your way on to the main stage.

Of course, for established artists like Prince it really doesn't matter if they butt heads with the industry because he's already made a fortune and has the luxury of doing things as he sees fit.

Re:Please retaliate. (1, Informative)

MontyApollo (849862) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691951)

I know people are falling all over themselves to attack the recording industry, but I believe everybody quoted in the article are *record stores*, not the recording industry. Carry on.

Prince should say screw you (5, Insightful)

FictionPimp (712802) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691537)

Prince should just open his own online store. Publicly announce he is no longer a member of the RIAA, and start selling his music online via his own channels. I'm sure he is rich enough to give them the finger.

Re:Prince should say screw you (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691865)

that was m thought. ooh Prince won't be able to sell his records in a record store that is routinely losing money, and are closing up shops faster than you can say P2P.

Re:Prince should say screw you (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691903)

Hey, he has a website. http://www.npgmc.com/ [npgmc.com]
His reasons for changing his name are sound too.

Re:Prince should say screw you (1, Insightful)

Rinikusu (28164) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691923)

Why would he announce he is no longer a member of the RIAA? I mean, other than their lack of due-diligence in going after filesharers, they do serve a perfectly legitimate purpose in protecting works from real, honest-to-goodness unauthorized duplication factories. The RIAA would still be beneficial to Prince to prevent unauthorized publication/distribution no matter how he decides to distribute his music (digital and/or physical, etc). I'm not sure that Prince is actually a member of the RIAA, though, so there's no "withdrawing" for him to do. The RIAA represents the labels, not the artists.

I agree that Prince should start his own label and do whatever the hell he wants to with his music.

Music Mafia (0, Redundant)

dennis_k85 (828582) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691539)

This just shows what a bunch of scumbags music companies really are.

Re:Music Mafia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691717)

The music companies ARE a bunch of scumbags, but this has nothing to do with them. This is about the RETAIL industry. I.e. the people who actually sell the music, not the people who produce it. It's the difference between people who work on oil rigs and people who pump the gas at the local station.

where to start? (4, Insightful)

yagu (721525) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691545)

So an artist decides to share his music and give it away. Where to start with the ensuing anguish by the industry?

  • warning artist Formerly known as Prince he may become the artist formerly available in record stores? Is that a threat? (BTW, I believe he is once again the artist known as Prince... it'd be nice for the industry to keep better tabs on their talent).
  • disrespectful to record stores? Hwah? How? Because they don't get to sell the CDs Prince decided to give away? I recently gave a camera to a friend... should the local camera shop be angry? I dinged their sales!
  • the industry is threatening to "retaliate". Fork 'em. Let 'em. I'd be interested in how that plays out.

If the RIAA and music industry could be anthropomorphized, they'd be that crazy uncle anybody would keep up in the attic.

Re:where to start? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691759)

I recently gave a camera to a friend... should the local camera shop be angry? I dinged their sales!

Only if you made the camera yourself.

Key line (5, Insightful)

FuzzyDaddy (584528) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691547)

which is destroying any perception of value around recorded music

"Perception of value"... that just about says it all, doesn't it?

Re:Key line (5, Insightful)

virgil_disgr4ce (909068) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691687)

I want to scream in these executive's faces: "The value of music is not monetary."

That's all there is to it. Music obviously can be bought and sold, and I don't care if you buy it or sell it. But the fact that these labels and businessmen cannot fathom a world in which it is not bought or sold is just disgusting.

Markets change, douchebags. Everybody lives with it. But the real value of music isn't going to change as long as humans have ears.

Re:Key line (4, Funny)

hxnwix (652290) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691917)

Your flippant comment adds insult to injury. Prince did not get where he is today by standing out or taking chances - he needs to stay within the reservation, abide by his contract and avoid this sort of publicity.

Desperation is a stinky cologne, Prince.

-The RIAA

Not surprising - it is an affirmation they fear (4, Insightful)

maillemaker (924053) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691549)

In the public mind, digital music already is rapidly approaching zero economic value, and this scares the crap out of the Music Industry.

Of course they are pissed at Prince - his action reaffirms the value of digital music in the public mind.

Re:Not surprising - it is an affirmation they fear (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691649)

Yeah that might be the reason, the other reason could be that its pulling the potential value of their songs when suing people from $750 per song [slashdot.org] .

I suggest we all just kick back and laugh at the RIAA (and its member companies) as more and more artists become famous on their dollar and then flip them off and do what they please. It is just another sign that this dinosaur is ready to die.

Re:Not surprising - it is an affirmation they fear (4, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691665)

In the public mind, digital music already is rapidly approaching zero economic value, and this scares the crap out of the Music Industry.

Of course, it's the music industries' own fault. Instead of building up a digital distribution business to add value to customers, they've set out to hurt customers and to cripple their own products, thereby decreasing the value of (non-free) legal copies.

If you want the "public mind" to value your service, make sure your service provides value to the public!

Re:Not surprising - it is an affirmation they fear (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691693)

Yep - the death-throes of a of a dying business model.

Re:Not surprising - it is an affirmation they fear (3, Insightful)

budgenator (254554) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691829)

Well lets see, the RIAA gives a promotional copy of the CD to a radio station (at $14.95 + $9.95 shipping and handling), and the artist has to cover the cost at ($0.08 / sale) which means he has to sell 312 cd's for every one given away to cover costs! No wonder someone finally said fuck that shit I'd rather give them away!
Still I wouldn't be surprised if Prince didn't end up selling more records to replace scratched freebie CD's

As it was in the beginning, (2, Interesting)

twitter (104583) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691899)

is as it is and ever will be. One day soon, the phrase "I got it for a song" will have it's meaning back. It's not that talent is worthless, it's that it will not remain a centralized commodity three companies can manipulate and artificially limit. That it was is the real quirk.

Re:Not surprising - it is an affirmation they fear (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691931)

> In the public mind, digital music already is rapidly approaching zero economic value...

Not zero economic value. Zero marginal value. Quite reasonable, because it is approaching zero marginal cost.

Crazy (1)

EssenceLumin (755374) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691553)

That's just nuts. Good for Prince.

Don't think so (5, Funny)

Bombula (670389) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691561)

'The Artist Formerly Known as Prince should know that with behavior like this he will soon be the Artist Formerly Available in Record Stores.

"The executive with an attitude like this should know that his outlets will soon be The Buildings That Used To Be Record Stores"

Fixed that for ya.

Re:Don't think so (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691787)

It's strange to think just how long it's been since I've been to a record store. Probably around 4 to 5 years now. Sucks for the handful of small shops run by people who are true music fans but the world has moved on.

Rotary Dial Phone
Modem
TV Antenna
Record Store

Re:Don't think so (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691873)

I've been reading slashdot solidly for an entire work day (no boss around) and this is by far the best post I've seen on it. Bravo!

They aren't (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691567)

even trying to act like anything but common thugs anymore. A musician should be able to do anything they want with their music.

Huge penis failure (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691569)

In your pants! [goatse.cz]

Remember kids, trolling is bad and evil.

Nothing like admitting it (5, Interesting)

overshoot (39700) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691583)

I love it -- they're actually foaming mad enough to publicly admit that they're engaged in a conspiracy in restraint of trade based on blocking artists' access to radio and retail.

Should make for utterly gripping testimony in the antitrust lawsuit under Sherman Act Part One.

Re:Nothing like admitting it (1)

igotmybfg (525391) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691659)

Should make for utterly gripping testimony in the antitrust lawsuit under Sherman Act Part One.
Too bad US laws don't apply in the UK.

Re:Nothing like admitting it (2, Funny)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691771)

True. But they do apply in Minnesota.

Re:Nothing like admitting it (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691929)

Too bad US laws don't apply in the UK.
They don't? Wow, I guess Tony Blair had me fooled.

Won't someone think of the artist? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691585)

"Shouldn't an artist be able to give away his own music if he wants to without fear of industry retaliation?""

Shouldn't an artist expect his customers not to distribute his music over P2P networks? Oh, wait we're taking about what's in YOUR interest.

Did someone change the subject? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691739)

"Shouldn't an artist be able to give away his own music if he wants to without fear of industry retaliation?""

Shouldn't an artist expect his customers not to distribute his music over P2P networks? Oh, wait we're taking about what's in YOUR interest.


Whether or not an artist should be allowed to give away his music has nothing at all to do with whether or not an artist should expect other people to refrain from doing so.

If I wasn't so anonymous and cowardly, I would mod you offtopic. I hope someone does. This article has nothing to do with copyright infringement or p2p filesharing.

Incidentally, what is your actual opinion on the original question? Do you think that artists should not be able to give their music away for free if they want to? And why?

Re:Won't someone think of the artist? (2, Insightful)

mythandros (973986) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691749)

So you mean to say that it's morally reprehensible to give away that which you own? Can you comprehend how nonsensical your position is? Prince giving away his music has NOTHING to do with P2P networks. This is about one artist choosing to give away his music and that scares the music industry for some reason. If you decided to give your mother $20 for a cab ride somewhere and I threw you in prison because you didn't demand repayment or charge your mother interest, wouldn't you be pissed off? Of course you'd be pissed off -- because that $20 was your to do with as you damn well pleased. The same principle is at work here.

Re:Won't someone think of the artist? (1)

Daniel_Staal (609844) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691825)

The one does not equate to the other. In one case, it is with the copyright holders permission, in the other it is expressly against it.

The copyright holder has the right to decide how their works are made avalible to the public, and at what cost. The public has the right to say 'thank you' or 'fuck you'. Other holders of other copyrights do not have any say in it.

Won't someone think of the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691955)

"The one does not equate to the other. In one case, it is with the copyright holders permission, in the other it is expressly against it."

*sigh* Are you intentionally missing the point? Or is this just the way slashdot regularly operates.

Re:Won't someone think of the artist? (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691871)

> Shouldn't an artist expect his customers not to distribute his music over P2P networks?

Nope. Music consumers have been getting music "for free" for as long as music recorings have been available. That ship sailed a long time ago. Nevermind digital. This "music is free" idea predates vinyl.

Artists need to realize that P2P networks are logically equivalent to radio and lending libraries and adapt accordingly.

Produce something worth owning and don't be an ass and people might actually buy your stuff even if they don't really have to. ...pervasive piracy hasn't done in games yet.

TAFKAPrince is God of music. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691587)

They will only make him stronger.

So what? (5, Insightful)

sasdrtx (914842) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691591)

Let the "industry" expose themselves for the idiots that they are. They're well on the way to irrelevance. Why would anyone want to slow them down?

You might not like Prince? (3, Insightful)

captainjaroslav (893479) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691595)

But, if that is the case, you are insane. Seriously. Okay, the current stuff isn't that good, but if you don't like Prince, you probably don't actually know much about him. If you learn about this musical genius, who, unfortunately gets lumped in with a lot of talentless 80s hitmakers (I hope you read this, Madonna), you will, at least, respect him.

Re:You might not like Prince? (1)

igotmybfg (525391) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691695)

but if you don't like Prince, you probably don't actually know much about him
Haha, what kind of a nonsensical statement is this? By analogy, if you don't like oranges, well then you probably don't know much about them. Because apparently liking something, or not, isn't a personal opinion anymore - it's a fact.

Re:You might not like Prince? (1)

captainjaroslav (893479) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691881)

Because apparently liking something, or not, isn't a personal opinion anymore - it's a fact.
Only when it comes to His Supreme Purpleness.

Industry execs have too much pride (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691599)

It's like a magician revealing his tricks and the music execs not liking it. How much does it actually cost to produce music? Maybe not as much as we think.

If he's going to give it away why doesn't he put it on the net for download?

Maybe, maybe not... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691601)

Shouldn't an artist be able to give away his own music if he wants to without fear of industry retaliation?

It depends. If he signed a legally-binding contract specifically saying he would allow some company to distribute his music, then he can't give away his music. The company poured their resources into making him a famous artist. Having made their investment, it's reasonable for them to expect Prince to honor his half of the contract.

Re:Maybe, maybe not... (1)

jedidiah (1196) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691933)

...all of which is ancient history.

More likely than not, Prince doesn't owe the labels anything now. They've already made their money off of him and he should be free to pursue any new deals he see's fit. He's an artist, not a slave.

Bad Idea (1)

muindaur (925372) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691605)

This would hurt the record stores because there is an alternative for computer users with internet and they lose the business of non computer users that would have gone to their store and potentially purchased other albums. I don't beleive iTunes would refuse to carry his music and Prince could start his own label if he wanted to.

No (4, Insightful)

Oligonicella (659917) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691613)

To actually answer the last question, "Shouldn't an artist be able to give away his own music if he wants to without fear of industry retaliation?". No.

Just as Prince can do what he wishes with his business, so can they. They might just be shooting their own foot, but it is their right to do so.

Re:No (1)

mythandros (973986) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691851)

Yes, but what the RIAA wants to do is stop Prince from doing what he wishes with his business. So what you're saying is that anyone is free to do what they wish, including preventing others from doing what they wish? You realize that this is contradictory, right?

Re:No (2, Informative)

Maudib (223520) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691859)

I dont know what the laws in the UK are like, but in the U.S. pulling Prince from record store shelves in retaliation would probably be a violation of anti-trust law.

Re:No (5, Insightful)

ceoyoyo (59147) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691883)

It's fine if they want to not invite him to the RIAA BBQ or something. Even tear up his membership card. It is not okay if they use their cartel to put pressure on other businesses, like retail stores and radio stations. That's pretty much exactly the behaviour that antitrust laws are designed to prevent.

music's not his to give away. (2, Informative)

naught (16634) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691617)

once he signs the record deal, the music no longer belongs to him. which sucks, but that's the biz.

Re:music's not his to give away. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691751)

If I recall correctly, Prince started his own label just as David Bowie has.

Re:music's not his to give away. (2, Interesting)

brunascle (994197) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691757)

well, the question is, was this music under contract, and does that apply to the UK?

Re:music's not his to give away. (1)

residieu (577863) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691941)

It's not the recording industry that's complaining, it's the record store industry. They think they have an inherent right to their position in the distribution stream, and they're already upset about Amazon and Walmart stealing their business.

Q: Giving Away Free Music? (2, Funny)

Not The Real Me (538784) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691619)

Q: "Shouldn't an artist be able to give away his own music..."

A: If the music sucks then I think the answer is quite clear.

Formerly known as? (2, Informative)

jonnythan (79727) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691625)

What a loon.

He *is* known as Prince. For a time, he wasn't, because his label owned the name. However, he is now, and has been for some time, known as prince.

Re:Formerly known as? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691753)

Correct. Alternatively, he is the artist formerly know as The Artist Formerly Known as Prince.

Re:Formerly known as? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691977)

So now he's "the artist 'currently' known as prince" ?

Re:Formerly known as? (1)

jadin (65295) | more than 7 years ago | (#19692009)

Oh wow.. I thought he was just slightly nuts. My respect for him has jumped back up a few notches.

And in the same blow my respect for music labels is lowered yet again. How deep can they go?

Empty Threat (1)

boris111 (837756) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691635)

They would never want to lose out on the money he would continue to generate with his old albums. Sounds like they want to make an example of Prince to prevent other artists from doing the same. Large revenue loss to make it worth it.

if we wanted to really piss the RIAA off (4, Interesting)

OutOnARock (935713) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691655)



We could of our own free will send Prince $1 for each free CD he gives us!

Do RIAA execs throw chairs?

Disclaimer: I love Prince's work, have seen him live many times, and his guitar is amazing and every bit as good as Eddie Van Halen or Eric Clapton, who yes, I've also seen live.

Re:if we wanted to really piss the RIAA off (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691801)

I would say his showman ship is better, not his technical guitar playing.

Re:if we wanted to really piss the RIAA off (1)

93,000 (150453) | more than 7 years ago | (#19692005)

Yes, the GP post may have overstated a little IMHO, but his general point is for the most part correct: the man does have serious f*cking chops.

RIAA at the Quicky Mart (5, Funny)

A10Mechanic (1056868) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691657)

We're going to party like it's on sale for $19.99 !! Thank you, come again!

An Insult? (5, Insightful)

alanw (1822) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691661)

... Paul Quirk, who also said it would be 'an insult' to record stores.
Record stores? If the recording industry is genuinely interested in record stores (as opposed to on-line sellers of bit-streams or supermarkets selling just the top 20), why has yet another chain of decent record shops closed [bbc.co.uk] today in the UK? Perhaps he really means "a danger to my company's profits".

Re:An Insult? (1)

kiwimate (458274) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691905)

Not to rain on your parade, but the linked article does rather make the opposite point from what you're saying. If I were in his position, this would be all grist to the mill:

Analysts say that the chain has been hit by the rise of supermarkets and online retailers selling CDs and DVDs, as well as the surging popularity of downloading music from the internet.

Similar factors led to HMV announcing on Thursday that its annual profits had more than halved.

This is Prince (4, Insightful)

Trailer Trash (60756) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691673)

Everybody know him, he doesn't need record labels. He really doesn't. He understands that.

I would imagine that the record labels are actually more fearful of other artists like him coming to this realization.

What's yours is ours.... (1)

mnslinky (1105103) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691683)

Didn't you all know that no individual owns anything they create anymore? Prince is a slave to the record companies, he just doesn't know it. In the age of employer/employee inventor's clauses and non-compete agreements, this sort of thing doesn't surprise me at all.

That's not to say I agree with it. Personally, I think Prince should be able to do with his music whatever he wants.

Re:What's yours is ours.... (1)

archen (447353) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691989)

Prince is a slave to the record companies, he just doesn't know it.

Dude, Prince is the guy who appeared in public with "SLAVE" written on his cheek during a dispute with Warner Bros in the 90s. I'm sure he's well aware of his position with the record companies.

YEAH!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691689)

I don't care for Prince's music, but...

He's the only high profile "artist" who is openly attacking the corporate musical monster.

Good for him.

Corporate death to the music controllers!

Go Prince!

Prince no fan of recording industry (1)

JoeCommodore (567479) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691701)

Why do you think he used a symbol for a bunch of years, because some music company owned the name "Prince" and he could not use it (or not inexpensively). There is an interview with Kevin Smith where he relays that the artist is pretty bitter of the recording industry.

The thing is that a lot of these DRM tactics are not the doings of the actual artists but of the recording industry which has rights to specific recordings (exmaple say Joe Cocker's recording of "With A Little Help From My Friends"), and if that particular recording is popular they (the record company) want to squeeze every last penny out of it's use. Which sometimes means strategically limiting wide distribution (which probably won't benefit the singer's career) in order to bring up the demand as it is not so obtainable and thus the price.

He's done this before (1)

Aqua OS X (458522) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691927)

I saw Prince live 2 or 3 years ago and everyone who walked in the door was given a copy of his newest album. I recall it sucking, but the gesture was cool.

Whoda thunk? Prince "gets" the revolution! (5, Insightful)

maillemaker (924053) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691703)

From TFA:

>The eagerly awaited new album by Prince is being launched as a free CD with a national Sunday
>newspaper in a move that has drawn widespread criticism from music retailers.
>.
>.
>.
>Prince, whose Purple Rain sold more than 11m copies, also plans to give away a free copy
>of his latest album with tickets for his forthcoming concerts in London

Clearly, Prince gets it. Digital Content is no longer an object to sell itself, as it has no value anymore, but is merely an attraction to attract consumers to purchase other things.

I think this is the mainstream start of the beginning of the end for people who have traditionally sold digital content to consumers. Those days are rapidly drawing to a close. With content so easily copyable, it's economic value is virtually zero. So there is no place for selling digital content to consumers anymore.

BUT, you CAN sell your digital content to an advertising firm, who will use it as flypaper to attract consumers to buy physical things.

This is precisely what Prince is doing. He isn't giving away his content for free. he's sold it to a newspaper company that will give it away to get people to buy (physical) newspapers, and he's giving them away to people who buy physical tickets to his concert.

Dear Paul Quirk, (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691715)

record stores are dead.

Thanks for your time,
Reality.

I mean really, if people want Prince music they will still pay for it,and that means people will sell it. Probably online.
If he wants to give it away, more power to him, it's his music, jack ass.

Record Stores?? (0, Troll)

Bayoudegradeable (1003768) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691815)

Records? Who the hell wants to buy Prince's records??? I mean, what, oh look! he went to the doctor in 1983... and this record says he was given a traffic ticket. And this record is the one Asscroft and Co. made when they heard he was going to be on the Super Bowl show... Records... sheesh... And as for record stores... people buy records? I want CDs, MP3s and iTunes :) And I don't need no stinkin' store for that... Let the RIAA hacks crap themselves... the floodgate has burst and there is nothing they can ever do to get back the manipulation known as radio/video play that they once had. I would love to see what "retaliate" means for them.

you would be angry and irrational too (1)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691723)

if you were facing extinction

Food for thought... (1)

going_the_2Rpi_way (818355) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691737)

Isn't this a pretty good example of the RIAA or at least the ERA operating as a defacto monopoly in the music business, and using unfair business practices to dissuade /retaliate against fee market competition. This is the stuff of anti-trust lawsuits, and if De Beers is not allowed to operate inside the U.S., maybe these people should also be sanctioned.

Well... (4, Insightful)

whisper_jeff (680366) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691743)

'The Artist Formerly Known as Prince should know that with behavior like this he will soon be the Artist Formerly Available in Record Stores.

Sure. Feel free to stop selling one of the more successful artists in the business. I'm sure that will encourage customers to come running to your store when they're looking to make a music purchase.

Also, in case you haven't figured it out, Mr Quirk, Prince has figured out the dirty little secret of the music industry - he doesn't need you any more. In fact, he's been doing quite well ever since he told the music industry as a whole to get bent. In case you haven't been paying attention for the last few years...

Fear and loathing in RIAA land (2, Informative)

packetmon (977047) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691763)

Is it me or did the RIAA become the record industry's "Nazi Industrial Strike Force".

Legally I don't think Prince can do this if his records are licensed. His distributor may seek to sue. On the flip side, he can always re-do a re-mix like release of said songs and release those worry free. I do believe though that if he went the ASCAP way though, he is legally bound to his distributor...

With ASCAP and BMI control somewhere in the neighborhood of 98% crap, it all depends on copyrights at this point... Two copyrights associated with a song, one that covers the song itself another that covers a particular of the song. E.g. author of a song might hold the copyright on the words and music - person who performed the song might hold a copyright on the actual recording... To perform said song - the performer would need the permission of the holder of the copyright on the song itself. In order to distribute a recording of that song - distributor would need the permission of the holder of the copyright on that recording.

So it all depends on how Prince laid this out (copyrights). Judging by who he is, he likely is the copyright holder of both which means he pulls weight... However, he is to some degree imposing on the distributor's TERRORTORY so its likely they'd want to fight him and tie some money up knowing damn well they'd lose. In this case, if they took say a 10mill hit from his antics, tying him up in court cases in which the amount of legal fees amount to what they perceived to lose... They'll likely like that anyway. They're nothing more than rich, selfish crybaby bastards anyway

Re:Fear and loathing in RIAA land (2, Informative)

SoulRider (148285) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691875)

I think Prince has been through enough legal bullshit with the record industry (they took his name away at one point) that he wouldnt be doing this unless he already knew he could.

War of Words (4, Funny)

ettlz (639203) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691769)

"The Artist Formerly Known as Prince should know that with behavior like this he will soon be the Artist Formerly Available in Record Stores."

Might The Artist Formerly Known as Prince then become, in response, The Artist Formerly Giving A Flying Fuck?

Where are the CDs coming from? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691797)

If, for example, I buy 10 CDs and give them to 10 friends, isn't that legal? It sounds as if this is essentially what Prince is doing.

Unless he burned millions of CDRs off his personal computer and plans to provide those.

Its the same reason he changed his name... (5, Insightful)

Tmack (593755) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691817)

Anyone that knows Prince and the reason for his name change, knows he changed his name was because of the record labels. He did it in protest of their ability to control him and his music and his name. He wanted to free himself from that control so he could do what he wanted as an artist rather than as the label's shill. He has always been against the record labels after originally signing with one and finding out the hard way what they are all about. He changed his name back after his contract with them ended, but has continued as an independent and always fighting against the labels. This is just another example of his battle, and seems to have already accomplished part of its goal: expose the labels for what they truly are, greedy self-proclaimed overlords of all music.

Tm

uh (1)

nomadic (141991) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691837)

The music industry disagrees. Executives are practically going insane over the idea and are threatening to 'retaliate'.

Well "the music retail industry" isn't exactly "the music industry". Or is this just a convoluted slashdot attempt to somehow blame the RIAA?

Tragedy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19691843)

- Doctor, doctor! Our patient is having a heart attack!

o I see... Well, plug the machine in and give him a few high voltage electro shocks.

- But doctor, won't he die sooner then?!

o Exactly.

Does anyone know the content of the CD? (1)

throatmonster (147275) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691847)

He may well be giving it away because it contains political songs that would get kill-9'd by the recording executives anyway. It might just contain a song that clearly says "Fuck you RIAA". I've never really paid that much attention to Prince before, but... now I'm curious, and I want hear the music.

Formerly Available in Record Stores (1)

fermion (181285) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691853)

'The Artist Formerly Known as Prince should know that with behavior like this he will soon be the Artist Formerly Available in Record Stores.

That should be formally aveilable in record stores that are now closed. Does anyone actually go to a record store, or does everyone go to wal mart or buy off amazon. And if there are no places where on can go for music, and the radio stations are paid to play, and aggressive ad campaigns are not open, then what is an artist to do? And the music associations do not seem to be doing anything. They negotiated with the likes of walmart and made the widely commercially available stuff most similar to state controlled chinese television.

Prince has music that is very well made. Good lyrics, good rhythms, just not always accessible. So if he is going to get new fans, when the reality is that most radio will not play him, then this is a good option. Not to mention the free publicity. His albums are usually pretty well put together, with minimal filler, so many will enjoy it.

OTOH, I see images of AOL, with many CDs in the landfill.

Unlawful (2, Insightful)

Citizen of Earth (569446) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691857)

Prince should know that with behavior like this he will soon be the Artist Formerly Available in Record Stores.

Should these guys really be calling attention to the illegal actions an illegal monopoly may be taking in the future?

Online subscribers... (1)

vigmeister (1112659) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691887)

Do they get a free download of the CD?
Cheers!

Best joke of the year (1)

Joebert (946227) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691897)

The Artist Formerly Known as Prince should know that with behavior like this he will soon be the Artist Formerly Available in Record Stores

That's the funniest joke I've read all year !

Re:Best joke of the year (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691997)

The best joke is that if the RIAA continue with behaviors like this, they'll soon be known as the former owners of music copyright :)

Take it to the stores, or to a Music web site (1)

Rolgar (556636) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691939)

I'm sure lots of local stores and nearly unknown electronic stores would love to have the shot at this, although, I suppose iTunes would eat up most of the market, which is maybe what RIAA is really afraid of. Surely it would by DRM free since there is no cost. Could you imagine putting DRM on a free file? I'm not a Prince fan although he's got some good music, but I hope he makes out like a bandit giving his music away free and other artists take notice. Of course, I think Prince is one of the top 20 concert drawers in the world, so the income from the CD is chump change to him. This will garner him great goodwill with fans, which makes him more money, and the corporate suits less. The dominoes are starting to fall.

For electronic distribution, he can probably go to any retailer on the web, and they can absorb the bandwidth costs in exchange for the free publicity. RIAA shouldn't really be allowed to retaliate against stores that carry this for the same reason MS can't charge different amounts to different OEMs for carrying Linux, so I think most retail stores will make this available as an almost free loss leader to get people in the door (they'll still have to pay to get their copies and make some space available in the rack).

An 'insult' to record stores? (1)

theurge14 (820596) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691953)

By record stores does he mean the record stores that are dwindling away at a massive rate since 2000, such as the late Tower Records? If so, the more insulting thing is ignoring the customers who are choosing to not drive downtown to buy $18 albums anymore when they can sit on their computer at home and buy tracks for $1 each. The consumers have been insulted by every record exec opening their mouth since they first shutdown Napster.

Is it his music? (1)

Applekid (993327) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691965)

I'm not sure if it's HIS music. He may perform on recording, but how about everyone else? Did he hire them or did his record company? Who mastered it? Who were the audio engineers in charge of it? Are they his employees or his record companies? Is he giving away pressed copies of the same thing in stores or are they his B-sides and rough-draft tracks?

It didn't have to be this way. He could have dropped his record company, published and released it on his own with all rights and privilages thereof. Including giving it away for free. If he's abusing the access he has to record company resources to produce pet projects and give them away, The Suits have good reason to be mad and what Prince is doing isn't legit.

In other news, I can't BELIEVE I'm actually on that side of a Music Industry vs. Anyone discussion.

The writing is on the wall (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691975)

Just a few more years.

e.g. FOPP
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/money/main.jhtml?xml=/m oney/2007/06/24/cnfopp124.xml [telegraph.co.uk]

Why would any artists care about music stores these days anyway? Oh they have gone into administration btw, just announced on the news 22 seconds ago.
 

Music is worthless (3, Informative)

spyrochaete (707033) | more than 7 years ago | (#19691983)

I have very strong feelings on this issue and I'm very impressed with Prince's intentions here.

The day music started becoming easily traded online was the day music became monetarily worthless. The cat is out of the bag and will never go back in. Whether this is immoral is irrelevant because the morals have been rewritten for the 21st century. The music industry's only hope is to embrace this fact and make their money from "NOT music" - albums with nice art, books, t-shirts, concerts, and other services and widgets that are related to music and cannot be duplicated.

I highly respect artists like Prince who give their music away for free and allow people to purchase it after the fact. I also highly respect artists like Nine Inch Nails who release their songs and samples under a Creative Commons license to allow fans to remix their works. It's going to happen whether the industry likes it or not, so why not embrace it today and show the world you're a pioneer full of good will?

If anyone is interested I blogged on this topic [demodulated.com] last week. I spoke primarily about DJ Amber [iamthedj.com] from San Francisco who sells CDs for cheap but also gives the same music away for free in MP3 format. For $10 she sent me a beautiful CD, autographed, within a week of sending her the money via PayPal. I had the pleasure of dealing with the artist personally and all my money went directly to her.

The internet empowers everyone but those who fight it. RIP music industry.
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