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GearAndGuitars 23rd November 2013 01:59 AM
BPI sends 50 millionth takedown request to Google | Music Week

The BPI is the first organisation in the world to have sent 50 million takedown requests to Google in its continued battle to remove links to copyright-infringing websites from the search engine.

“Google knows full well, from millions of notices and from court decisions, which sites are illegal. Yet it turns a blind eye to that information and chooses to keep on driving traffic and revenues to the online black market, ahead of legal retailers.”

Whitecat 22nd November 2013 10:14 AM
Top albums miss out on million-sales mark as music streaming grows | Music | The Gua

Biggest-selling artist album has 600,000 sales, the first time since 1980s none has hit 1m, but overall sales down only slightly

GearAndGuitars 19th November 2013 05:18 PM
You're Losing Money: Why The Majority Of Artists Should NOT Use Tunecore - hypebot

OP-ED by C. Vincent Plummer ( @cvpmusic ) is a Musician, Co-Founder, & Social Strategist for Bedloo. If you're anything like me, your band is not famous. You might have had some moderate success in local markets, but let's be real; your band's trajectory isn't heading towards Coachella any time soon. As a matter of fact, your band has internally combusted. Over the years the band mate relationships have dwindled into Facebook 'likes' on random posts. Someone just had a baby. Someone just started a new business. Someone just got married... and what's worse, the local bars have stopped buying...

Whitecat 17th November 2013 01:47 PM
The MPAA wants schools to teach first-graders the dangers of digital piracy | The Ver

The copyright lobby hasn't been shy about pressing the anti-piracy case, but a new LA Times report suggests they're taking the battle to a place it's never been before: schools. A group called the...

Whitecat 15th November 2013 05:43 PM
Grooveshark Executive Murdered In St. Petersburg, Florida - Business Insider

Eddy Vasquez, director of international sales for Grooveshark, was murdered over the weekend.

GearAndGuitars 15th November 2013 04:19 PM
Beck on Spotify: The Model Doesn't Work. And the Quality Sucks. | Digital Music News

If I tried to make my albums with that Spotify pays me, I wouldn’t make them. I couldn’t hire other musicians or someone to master it; I’d have to do everything myself.

Whitecat 15th November 2013 08:42 AM
Good music education 'for minority'

Ofsted warns that quality music education only reaches a minority of pupils in England despite a re-organisation.

GearAndGuitars 14th November 2013 10:56 PM
Rap Genius Named the Most 'Blatantly Illegal' Lyric Site by Music Publisher

The list was first published by David Lowery, whose cage-rattling is now starting to generate some serious results (so be very afraid of him from now on).

GearAndGuitars 14th November 2013 10:52 PM
Rap Genius Says It Will Seek Licenses for Lyrics - NYTimes.com

After being called out by a publishers' group, Rap Genius revealed that it already had a deal with Sony/ATV Music Publishing and would pursue other deals.

In an interview, Mr. Zechory discussed the idea of fair use, which provides an exception to copyright restrictions for certain uses like commentary and parody. But he acknowledged the difficulty of that route, and said that his company was “better off pursuing partnerships with publishers.”

“We want to spend our time building an interesting product and community instead of building a legal case, even though we’re sure it would be interesting,” he said. “We chose to partner up with the music publishers and license the lyrics so we could get on with our work and establish closer ties to songwriters and artists.”

David Israelite, the president of the publishers’ trade association, said of Rap Genius’s deal with Sony/ATV, “I think it proves that what Rap Genius is doing is not fair use, and I am hopeful it is a first step toward becoming a fully licensed site.”

GearAndGuitars 14th November 2013 06:46 PM
A Chat With Blake Morgan | Fox News Video

College Associate Shannan Ferry interviews ECR Music Group owner Blake Morgan on his music career and Pandora royalties.

GearAndGuitars 14th November 2013 06:38 PM
Why does Google Play's Tim Quirk show such disdain for musicians? | Media | The Guardian UK

Helienne Lindvall: Musician turned digital music executive hits the wrong note with artists and composers over rights and royalties

Quirk, however, keeps his musical past on the downlow, despite (or perhaps because of) having actually been in a band (Too Much Joy) signed to a major label in the 90s. Yes, this is the same Tim Quirk who wrote the fabulous tirade My Hilarious Warner Bros Royalty Statement on his band's website back in 2009, complaining about how the label hadn't accounted digital income correctly to the band (this, he says, is because the band was $395,214 unrecouped and the digital revenues would never come close to recouping that amount).

Back in 2009, he was raging against the major label system, but now that he works for a corporation that reported more than $50bn in revenue last year – more than three times the $16.5bn revenue of the entire global recorded music industry in 2012 – he appears to think musicians should now simply accept whatever scraps his company chooses to throw their way.

GearAndGuitars 14th November 2013 07:17 AM
The High Cost of Free | Music | East Bay Express | The Trichordist

A new documentary takes a hard look at how the digital age has eroded the value of music and the ability of musicians to make a living. Unsound, which is currently in the midst of an Indiegogo campaign to raise $52,000 to finish an edit of the film, marks Count's first foray into the documentary.

Unsound, which is currently in the midst of an Indiegogo campaign to raise $52,000 to finish an edit of the film, marks Count’s first foray into the documentary format — an endeavor that required him to take a two-year break from his music career. In a phone interview, Count said he was “the last person in the world” who he thought would take an activist stance on an issue, but this was something he couldn’t ignore.

Thirteen years since the Internet Revolution, I watched all of the artists around me make less and less while their popularity increased,” he said. “I saw how unfair that was. I saw how afraid people were to speak out. How could it be as artists — who are the most vocal during times of injustice — how are they so afraid that they weren’t writing about this? I thought that was a little shocking. This is a very compelling story.

GearAndGuitars 13th November 2013 11:38 PM
Lessons from the Music Industry: Should We Put Our Faith in Technology Companies? | T

Musicians have learned that the new corporate powers -- technology companies -- are possibly worse than the old corporate powers -- record companies. How well would technology companies treat academics?

The new business model is already here, it’s been in place for over 10 years, and it’s making an enormous amount of money. But very little of that money goes to the creator.

At some point, one has to question whether it is still possible to earn a living as a musician, or any type of creator.

GearAndGuitars 13th November 2013 11:36 PM
Finnish pop musician earns mere pennies on Spotify | Yle Uutiset | yle.fi

This year Kela racked up more than one million plays over a four-month period on Spotify for his hit "Restless Girl".

The highly popular music streaming service Spotify seems to offer musical artistes a smooth and easy channel to distribute their content and reap the resulting rewards. However one Finnish pop musician has gone public with his earnings – the returns aren’t what most would imagine.

GearAndGuitars 13th November 2013 11:32 PM
Rolling Stone | Cracker and Camper Van Beethoven Frontman David Lowery Spearheads Lyric Site Takedown

The National Music Publishers Association issued takedown notices to 50 unlicensed lyric sites yesterday, according to a press release.

"Unlicensed lyric sites are largely ignored as copyright infringers, but in fact these sites generate huge web traffic and involve more money than one might think," Lowery said in a statement. "The lyric business is clearly more valuable in the Internet age."

One of the founders of Rap Genius – a site that received a $15 million investment last year and that, according to the New York Times, welcomed 5.3 million unique visitors in October – discussed the announcement with the newspaper yesterday.

Whitecat 12th November 2013 09:12 AM
Brands pump more than £100m into the UK music industry | Music | theguardian.com

Figures show brands were responsible for investing £104.8m in the UK music industry during 2012, an increase of 6% on 2011

Whitecat 12th November 2013 09:09 AM
Is Daniel Ek, Spotify founder, going to save the music industry … or destroy it? |

Swedish entrepreneur tells record labels that the best way to survive is to give everything away for free. Most have signed up – but many are yet to be convinced

Whitecat 12th November 2013 09:06 AM
Want To Record Your Music For Free? New Noise Group Can Help | Infectious Magazine

As the saying goes time is money, and it makes sense, after all I m sure almost everyone has had a job that pays an hourly wage where time is very literally money. So it isn t very surprising to learn that nearly every professional recording studio charges an hourly rate for their services.

Whitecat 8th November 2013 11:09 AM
Musicians Say Enough Is Enough: The Significance of Whitey’s Rejection Letter |

If you have an eye on the music industry then there is no doubt that you saw the scathing letter from British alternative rock/electronic artist, Whitey, to television production company, Betty TV. They were one company too many to request free music for their productions, claiming to have "no budget for music". The response is…

Whitecat 6th November 2013 10:36 AM
Spotify guru on rich list with £190m fortune - Telegraph

The founder of Spotify, the online music streaming service, is the highest new entry on a music millionaires Rich List with a personal fortune of £190 million.

Whitecat 5th November 2013 09:47 AM
Beck and Arcade Fire invite fans in

With more music videos now watched online than on TV, some bands are using them as a way to interact with fans.

Whitecat 4th November 2013 12:40 PM
Why Swedes write perfect pop

Swedish songwriter Jorgen Elofsson on why his compatriots have such a knack for writing pop hits.

Whitecat 4th November 2013 11:47 AM
Young Knives: how to make a pop album for £12,000 - Features - Music - The Independ

It’s five years since Guns N’ Roses delivered Chinese Democracy, the most expensive album ever produced, costing in excess of $13m (£8m). But the ravages suffered by the music industry since then have caused artists to cut their cloth. Now one acclaimed British band has produced their latest album for just £12,000 after mastering soldering and welding to build their own instruments.

GearAndGuitars 2nd November 2013 02:31 AM
Amanda Palmer: Spotify and iTunes "Aren't Putting Any Money Back Into Content Creation

“Can I speak up here? I’d like to just add to what Zoe [Keating] was saying. There’s also – the other kind of general problem that I think we’re seeing that doesn’t really get addressed very much because it’s so big and possibly un-fixable is that as bad and clunky as the major label system was, you still had a constant influx of capital back from those giant, sometimes soul-sucking systems, back into content creation.

And one weird thing is that iTunes, Apple, Spotify, Google, whatever, all of the people who are profiting – [and] YouTube – who are profiting off the artists from the small level to the huge levels aren’t really feeding very much back into the creation of new content.

GearAndGuitars 2nd November 2013 02:20 AM
Eminem Makes Public Service Announcement Against Music Piracy | AllHipHop.com

Eminem sent out a public service announcement to address online piracy in the wake of his latest album The Marshall Mathers LP 2.

The album leaked online earlier this week and the Shady Records machine quickly went to work to suppress the leak. Eminem and his management even went as far as making Rap Genius remove the lyrics to the songs:

GearAndGuitars 2nd November 2013 02:14 AM
T Bone Burnett vs. Silicon Valley: 'We Should Go Up There With Pitchforks and Torches | The Hollywood Reporter

The car industry gets decimated and people go into apoplexy. The recording industry gets destroyed and people seem to be sanguine or happy about it, almost, because they're getting everything for free. If somebody had come down from Silicon Valley 30 years ago and said "I've got this new technology, and you're gonna be able to see all around the world, transfer your stuff all over the world, you're gonna be able to send things, you'll be able to see your friends, you'll be able to hear music -- all you have to do is give up your privacy and your royalties," everybody would have said, "Get the f--- out of town! Right now! Get out of here!"

Instead, these guys came down with their shtick, and everybody went "Well, how can we make money from this great new technology?" "Oh, you're not gonna make money from it. Everything's gonna be free. Just give us the intellectual property we can send around in our pipes, everybody will subscribe, and then we'll be rich. Not you, though." [Laughs.] "Don't ask us what we're doing with the money. Just make the stuff and send it to us for free."

That's how much of a straight-up con it's been. People in Hollywood, we should go up there with pitchforks and torches to Silicon Valley now. Unfortunately, that's [how sophisticated] our response would be -- pitchforks and torches.

Whitecat 29th October 2013 12:54 PM
How Spotify and its digital music rivals can win over artists: 'Just include us' | T

Musician Zoe Keating in debate with Amanda Palmer, Imogen Heap and will.i.am, Spotify, Songkick and Vevo. By Stuart Dredge

GearAndGuitars 28th October 2013 06:37 PM
Virgin Disruptors Live from 7:30PM GMT!

Has tech killed the music industry?

Watch the live debate featuring will.i.am, Amanda Palmer, Scooter Braun, Imogen Heap and Zoë Keating, alongside leading music platforms Spotify, Vevo and Songkick live from 7.30pm GMT.

Join in the conversation live using

Whitecat 28th October 2013 02:46 PM
The Percentage Of Music Online That Goes Unpurchased - Business Insider

Here's an insane stat: 98.9% of all digital music tracks in existence in 2011 — 7,931,408 out of 8,020,660 — sold fewer than 1,000 copies.

Whitecat 26th October 2013 10:39 PM
Girls allowed? The women on top in the music industry | Music | The Observer

After Sinead O'Connor's letter to Miley Cyrus, sexism in the music business is on the agenda again. But what do the women behind the scenes think? Jude Rogers meets six of them

GearAndGuitars 26th October 2013 02:33 AM
98.9% Of All Tracks Sell Less Than 1000 Copies and Other Music Industry Fun Facts - Hypebot

98.9% of all figital music tracks in existence in 2011 have solf fewer than 1000 copies. That's 7,931,408 out of 8,020,660 songs. This and other "fun" music industry facts from a new book by Harvard Business School Professor Anita Elberse's new book Blockbusters: Hit-making, Risk-taking, and the Big Business of Entertainment . Here are more (Aspiring artists, brace yourself...) :

73.9% of all digital music tracks sold fewer than 10 copies in 2011

97.1% of all albums available sold fewer than 1,000 copies in 2011

58.4% of all albums in existence sold fewer than 100 copies in 2011 - 513,146 out of 878,369

400 albums released in 2011 accounted for 35% of all music sales

514 songs out of 8,020,660 available in 2011 accounted for 40% of sales

GearAndGuitars 26th October 2013 01:21 AM
Swedish Artists Are Now Threatening Legal Action Over Streaming Royalties... | Digital Music News

The origin of the outrage is telling: Sweden is widely regarded as a model country for streaming and access, thanks to massive adoption and recovering recording revenues. The threatened suits suggest that not everyone is celebrating or, more importantly, enjoying the early spoils.

Recent financial figures show an unsustainable level of cash burn at Spotify, and potentially serious problems attracting more capital as a result. And after burning through hundreds of millions of dollars, Spotify is getting dangerously close to depleting its funding tranche.

GearAndGuitars 22nd October 2013 11:01 PM
Study Finds That Piracy Is Growing Rapidly and Becoming More Profitable... | DMN

Streaming services may be paying you pennies, but at least they’re lowering piracy. But what if that isn’t true?

So the piracy sites that we’ve focused on for this study are very much driven by profit: they are generating revenue from advertising, they are generating revenue sometimes from premium subscription fees. And obviously when enforcement shuts these sites down and or shuts down their payment processors, it’s hitting directly at their revenue streams.

“So obviously what we’ve seen over the last two years is a significant rise in the amount of pirated content, and the amount of infringement that is taking place across the internet.”

GearAndGuitars 22nd October 2013 12:12 AM
As Downloads Dip, Music Executives Cast a Wary Eye on Streaming Services - NYTimes.co

Total digital sales are down almost 1 percent so far this year, and some in the industry cite the rise of streaming music services like Spotify and Pandora.

So far this year, 1.01 billion track downloads have been sold in the United States, down 4 percent from the same time last year, according to the tracking service Nielsen SoundScan. Album downloads are up 2 percent, to 91.9 million; combining these results using the industry’s standard yardstick of 10 tracks to an album, total digital sales are down almost 1 percent.

GearAndGuitars 19th October 2013 07:37 AM
Business Matters: What the Heck Happened to Track Sales? | Billboard

The impact of streaming. Subscription services may finally be changing the buying patterns of the most active music fans. Word is that some music companies now believe streaming services -- namely on-demand subscription services -- are starting to impact sales. Until recently, executives did not see proof that streaming services were cannibalizing download sales.

GearAndGuitars 17th October 2013 09:36 PM
IsoHunt to Shut Down After Settlement With Hollywood Studios

The Motion Picture Association of America has announced that it has reached a settlement with the operators of IsoHunt, one of the larger BitTorrent indexers, which in its heyday was handling several million torrents for some 7.5 million unique visitors.*

The development comes in advance of a scheduled trial date next month; the MPAA had been aiming to collect hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.

It also occurs after a ruling last March by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to affirm the liability of IsoHunt for inducing users to infringe plaintiffs’ copyrighted material through the trading of popular movies and TV shows. The plaintiffs, led by Columbia Pictures, originally submitted 44 infringed works, but later said there were thousands of movies and TV shows being infringed by IsoHunt. The appeals court rejected Fung's contention that his service was just indexing what was out there, saying it had “red flag” knowledge of a broad range of infringing activity.

GearAndGuitars 17th October 2013 06:51 PM
Copyright Infringement as a Growth Industry : PrivacyNet

Copyright infringement is driven by a growing hunger for content. The first step in putting an end to it is by limiting the supply of content available.

In his paper, Keen presents three core conclusions:

1) Effective Action Requires Collaboration: Online intermediaries such as advertising networks, payment processors, search engines and social networks benefit benefit from the legitimate sale of online content but can also, in the short term, benefit from the illicit sale of content. The latter is a shortsighted view (as well as illegal) and by working together they can significantly reduce copyright infringement.

2) The Law is Not Enough: The law is at least several steps behind reality under the best circumstances. In the Digital Age, the lag is more like a mile. Voluntary measures and best practices adopted by online intermediaries will have a much more direct impact.

3) Competition Matters: Here Keen focuses on Google. He believes that Google, as the dominant force in online search, advertising and video, impedes the universal adoption of voluntary mechanisms. There’s no incentive for or market pressure on them to adopt the measures and there is, in fact, a continuing incentive, at least int he short term, for them to perpetuate the status quo.

GearAndGuitars 17th October 2013 12:01 AM
Gang of Four's Dave Allen Is #TeamSpotify, Calls Out David Byrne and Thom Yorke | SPIN

As we noted last time, this debate certainly has advocates on both sides.

To be sure, it seems a bit unfair for Allen to start out by quoting the headline from Byrne's story as if Byrne himself had necessarily written it, rather than a click-hungry editor. And he might tip his own hand a little bit when he approvingly quotes professor Clay Shirky, a tireless Web evangelist.

Whitecat 16th October 2013 09:33 PM
Why David Byrne is wrong about Spotify | Dave Allen | Comment is free | theguardian.

Dave Allen: Musicians such as Byrne and Thom Yorke can't blame the internet for their problems. We need to work with new markets, not reject them

GearAndGuitars 16th October 2013 05:40 PM
The Web Ain’t Sherwood Forest–Except Maybe for the Mercatus Center, Koch

Piracy apologists would have us believe that it's actually the*content creators*who are to blame when their movies, music and books are pirated. The rhetoric is always the same old, same old–a stale mantra of “outdated business models” and blame the victim verbiage.

Given Google’s link to the Mercatus Center’s funding (and its libertarian philosophy) is it any wonder their new astro-turf site blames big, bad Hollywood for piracy instead of the thieves who steal and monetize its movies. Piracy is flourishing not because of Hollywood’s failure, but because criminals can make money monetizing stolen content.

Piracydata.org’s data dump is clearly yet another attempt by Google, and its stealth lobbyists (dressed as academics) to muddy the debate and undermine the rights of content creators. Dueling “studies” created using lobbyist’s cash is nothing new—but please, at least be honest about who’s funding the research OK? That would really be “telling it like it is.”

GearAndGuitars 16th October 2013 05:38 PM
A piracy defense walks the plank at the Post : Columbia Journalism Review

There are many problems with Timothy B. Lee’s Washington Post blog post on Hollywood’s supposed culpability for the theft of its own movies, beginning with the morally unserious jujitsu deployed in arguing that Hollywood is culpable for the theft of its own movies.

The Mercatus- and Cato-connected editor of the Washington Post tech blog that aims “to be indispensable to telecom lobbyists and IT professionals alike, while also being compelling and provocative to the average iPhone-toting commuter” also had a major correction that undermines the entire premise of the piece and reveals its one-sided reporting.

garyboy2024 15th October 2013 08:51 PM
Thought I'd share an interesting and somewhat depressing article I stumbled across recently. Here's my question then: What do you feel is the way forward for engineers and studios in this economic climate?

Here's the link:

GearAndGuitars 14th October 2013 08:00 PM
More on How the London School of Economics Got it Wrong |MUSIC • TECH • POLICY

For those of you who haven’t heard about it, the London School of Economics allowed some lecturers to post a “study” on the LSE’s website that has some very questionable assumptions in it–not to mention overtly misquoting actual econometric studies.

If the LSE lecturers are interested in getting at the true cost of piracy, a fruitful area of research for them would be to investigate this advertising revenue. These are known numbers. Someone is paying the illegal sites and Google is one of those people by their own admission.

You don’t have to agree with my estimate–it may be high or, more likely, it may be low. But it is impossible to argue that the number doesn’t exist or relies on an estimate. This payment is taxable income–even in the UK Google does make some payment to Inland Revenue. It’s taxable to Google when it is paid by the advertiser, Google takes a deduction for the share paid to the pirate, and Google has an obligation on some level to report the corresponding income paid to the pirate to justify the tax deduction.

Whitecat 14th October 2013 03:59 PM
Advertising Week: 12 Music Industry Predictions for 2014 | Billboard

From the five panelists who participated in Billboard’s music and branding roundtable last week, to the eight executives who discussed additional issues with Billboard’s Andrew Hampp during an Advertising Week program dubbed “The Sellout,” here’s a look at what we might be talking about come next September.

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