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View Diary: DNC hires RIAA shill (267 comments)

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  •  Ugggggh. (0+ / 0-)

    You're proud of that one, regardless of it's rediculous accusation.  I have a long history here, which you are welcome to search the archives for before spitting up that kind of pflegm.  

    To those who are fed the garbage about the labels making all the money and the artists getting screwed:

    Music as a career is speculative as is investing in their careers.  No one who signs a recording contract is forced to.  They are asking what is basically a bank dipped into distributing sauce and covered with marketing to buy their art and sell it for them, paying them a percentage.  

    And, depending on how much they think people will buy the artist's album, they will give them an advance on future earnings so they don't have to wait around forever for royalties to kick in.  It's a loan.  Not bling bling money, but to use to tour their band.  You know?  That $700K+ it costs to tour a ten piece band and their crew for a couple months?  An expensive goddamn thing to do, but where the artists make the majority of their money.  The labels make sure everyone knows your name, and you go pay them all visits, give them your love and sweat, and sell them shirts to remember you by.  This is where the artists make their money.

    However, you don't make much money touring unless you are getting played on the airwaves - and without going into details, it takes a lot of man hours to get the music to all the Stations and develop the trust to consider the submissions.  It is an industry in itself, and it costs.  Another place the money is needed if the artists are going to be able to profit.

    Oh god, the publicity.  It doesn't grow on trees.  You pay for your publicist's staff, who get you on Late Night talk shows and featured in Variety.  Don't think they just call you.

    These labels don't roll around naked in cash.  They  spend a lot of their own money paying a lot of hard working employees and contractors - all artists themselves in some way - to do all the things necessary to get CDs in the hands of people all over the globe.  They are counting on the album making money (not stealing it in whatever form) to pay those employees and turn a profit, like every business.

    If with all the help in the world, people just choose not to buy your stuff (or if people just steal it instead) you are in trouble, just as anyone else who might have borrowed money in a failing venture:  you still owe the bank for the loan.

    It's risky believing that destiny demands your music and your lead singer's sweat reach every corner in the world.  It's expensive missionary work.

    Are labels suppose to . . . what?  Give their money and productive work force to everyone for free?  Brilliant.  Way to see the big picture.  These venture capitalist recording labels go, and so does touring.  Sorry.

    Like I said up top, no one forces a band to sell their album to a recording label.  They can be waiters and keep their music local, working outside the art world, playing as a hobbiest.  They can keep all the money from their album sales.  It'll buy them a nice new box to store their instruments in as they lose their fire and master TIVO.

    This is the norm for hobbiests.  But, do you want your entitlement and greed to prevent something that everyone deserves to hear from touching everyone?  They don't ever sell their album, the label doesn't ever do all the marketing and placement and don't put your new artist on tour with John Mayer, and you don't sell shit.  100% of nothing more than you can fit into your navel.

    This is what you desire?  You have no freaking clue how this business works and no idea what your theft, were it not regulated and prosecuted, would do to art in general.  One-track minded, uninformed, simple, young, and greedy.

    You related to Bush?  Operation Just Desserts?  

    "Life is a dream for the wise, a game for the fool, a comedy for the rich, a tragedy for the poor." --Sholem Yakov Rabinowitz

    by Back in the Cave on Sat Apr 14, 2007 at 12:42:32 AM PDT

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    •  and with all this effort and labor. . . (1+ / 0-)
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      and all the payola, the best the record industry can do is Britney Spears and the latest boy-toy bands.



      Business models that are unsustainable fall apart, and no amount of government regulation can protect them forever against market forces.

      Or demographic forces, like the splintering of the mass market into fractions too small for anyone to sell platinum into. You've got a business model that can't make money with somebody who can sell 10K SKUs reliably every year, and that's where the action is going to be in a decade.

      I don't know what's going to replace the "record label as VC" (like Silicon Valley VCs, just not as greedy, intelligent,  competent, or honest) ... but hopefully, the mediocrities turned into "stars" will fade into oblivion just like your career is going to.

      Personally, I'd like to see "cream" rising to the top for a change, not crap. And the end of your industry will probably be the start of this happening.

      Looking for intelligent energy policy alternatives? Try here.

      by alizard on Sat Apr 14, 2007 at 01:19:15 AM PDT

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      •  You're like a chatty cathy doll. (0+ / 0-)

        You spit out day old news while the three dimensional amongst us are analyzing the colors as they run together an are busy painting the next masterpiece with the remains.  

        You know nothing more than what you read, and your diarrhea here is no more original than music you make violating others' copyrights.

        Be the resident wannabe health care expert next.  I'd like to see you hand the good doctor his uninformed ass.


        "Life is a dream for the wise, a game for the fool, a comedy for the rich, a tragedy for the poor." --Sholem Yakov Rabinowitz

        by Back in the Cave on Sat Apr 14, 2007 at 10:54:04 AM PDT

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    •  That one really got to you (0+ / 0-)

      Note I said you were right wing on this issue, not that you were a right winger.  Your history can show that you're overall a liberal, but it doesn't make your position on this particular issue any less right wing.

      So...all those people are needed to get a band going.  Why?  I'd guess it's because other bands have them.

      If the RIAA companies go belly up, and no bands have them, radio stations aren't going to stop playing music.

      Exactly what would happen?  I don't know for sure, but my guess is that bands looking to become big would get agents the way aspiring actors do (who with aspiring bands, as actors' agents with aspiring actors, would represent a whole bunch of bands).

      Much less overhead and infrastructure to be paid there, and the agents market their artists' songs to radio stations to get air time, etc..  

      That wouldn't work now, as their agent with 20 artists would be competing with the infrastructure you mentioned.

      But get rid of that infrastructure for everyone, and the playing field is level, and then the agent is probably all an artist needs.

      And you just accused me of stealing, when I've never stolen.  I've violated copyright law, which is what you call stealing; but I haven't even done that since iTunes became available.  I'm perfectly content to pay $1/song.  That's fair.  And in fact, once cumulative inflation reaches 50% higher than today, the price can go up to $1.50/song and I'll accept it.

      But...I'm not as young as you might assume, and I did buy music in pre-Napster days.  And I still feel ripped off, remembering the skyrocketing price of cassette and CD singles, and then fewer and fewer songs being released as singles at all, so that people would have to buy the whole album.

      And then there's of course the absurdity that copyrights aren't very time limited as patents are, and a lot of songs just plain weren't available in any form.

      And yes, it made sense that, as with out of print books, record labels stopped publishing albums once the demand for them was too small.  But when it reaches that point, it needs to be public domain-- because I do demand a copy for free if you won't sell it to me.

      And right now, all I demand is reasonable prices as well as reform to bring things into the public domain much, much faster.  iTunes offers reasonable prices, so it's what I use.  But I know that iTunes only exists because people are using BitTorrent and getting the content for free.  

      So, I know that it's essential for "piracy" to continue to happen, or we'd be back to the old ripoff days.  The Democrats-- the party of the people rather than the powerful-- should commit themselves to making sure those days never return.

      Economic -3.50/Social -2.41 "Please don't eat the moderates." (Yes, someone else used that before me, but it's perfect.)

      by CenterLeft on Sat Apr 14, 2007 at 10:57:40 AM PDT

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      •  You're only off (0+ / 0-)

        In your description of an "RIAA company."  There is no such thing.  RIAA is an enforcement agency that protects the rights of its members from theft of intellectual property.  Their MEMBERS are many.  Browse their site.  Most labels are members.

        It's all a bit more complicated than the euphoric possible future you describe.  I'd love to get into it more, but I'm doing all this from the floor of a conference in Vegas . . .  eh, screw it.  No one important around.

        OK.  It doesn't take a mint to make a band.  You can even tour on the cheap.  In the 90's I used to be an agent.  Sent some pretty damn good bands around the country.  

        Thing is, I was still young.  The tours were inefficient and lacked real promotion.  No radio.  No real publicity.  Too many people who deserved to be touched couldn't be.

        Not every band needs to have their album promoted and not every band is asked to spend that kind of money.  But, sometimes an investor (label) will offer to put the dime into a product.  They offer to purchase the album in order they can market it and sell it for you.  

        It's a tough call.  You're going to owe money if you do and you have to determine if you believe in your music enough to take that loan against yourself.

        You don't have to, and you don't have to.  It's just so much different now that recording equipment and the access to rudimentary promotional outlets is so widespread.  Everyone has an EPK whereas a few years ago, you couldn't find but a handful of venue buyers or promoters who were tech savvy enough to freaking open your MP3's. Nowadays, there are infinitely more bands with arguably the same amount of net talent.  Unfortunately, with the increase of people who choose to throw on a guitar strap and rock, there was no coresponding increase in disposable income people had to support it.  So times are lean.  There are no extra positions open, and there are a staggering number of disillusioned who since they cannot sell it, give it, and the product that some sell is somehow now the target of a revolt.  

        Am I remotely off here?  I've been swimming in this pond for a long time and this is  pretty much how it's seen everywhere I've been.  Here, Europe, and especially in Japan.  

        So you know, I'm not a fan of the prices of discs now.  Not at all.  So you know, all of my clients have written into their contracts the maximum retail price of the product, and it's never been over $15.99.  Ever.  And, my clients have all been influenced into providing content in their album packaging just a bit better than could have been fit into a vinyl LP.  Although, you can deliver value and keep costs down, it's coming from somewhere.  It might mean less people are introduced because the marketing is the victim, but you make do because at the end of the day, despite what the tech writer lizard thinks he understands, we all live to bring good into the world.

        Also, you know that your band will always make the lions share of your money from touring and you understand the costs . . . and you understand where it comes from . . . if it comes at all.  So I know you understand.  It's all connected and each aspect compliments the other.  Our web of life.

        It takes a tech geek to know that these tech geeks don't have any idea of the way our biosphere runs, and their hostile takeover attempt is an affront to music and music lovers alike.  One that directly affects the lives of thousands and thousands of hard working people.

        Things may change, no matter what, we are going to continue to be able to feed our children, and people will still pay for good art.

        "Life is a dream for the wise, a game for the fool, a comedy for the rich, a tragedy for the poor." --Sholem Yakov Rabinowitz

        by Back in the Cave on Sat Apr 14, 2007 at 11:50:19 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Okay, some fair points.... (1+ / 0-)
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          Progressive Moderate

          Let me ask you a few questions, with the intent to lay off the vitriol and just ask your view of these issues:

          1. Do you think that iTunes (and similar sites) would be allowed to continue to sell a legal download with unlimited plays of nearly any song one wants for $1/song (eventually adjusted for inflation) if "piracy" were successfully eliminated?
          1. Regardless of whether you think the answer to #1 is no but nevertheless think "piracy" ideally would be eliminated entirely, would you prefer to see iTunes and sites like them able to continue to operate as they are, if you could choose?
          1. Since you are left of center and as such accept that there are some limits to property rights (taxation being okay, time limits on patents being okay), what is the rationale behind your support for nearly unlimited copyright protection terms?

          I'll write a bit more about my view on copyright protection limitations:

          I think that the goals of most economic policy, including this one, should be:

          1. To make sure that products get produced, and
          1. To make such items as affordable and as widely available as possible, within the constraint of part 1.

          Pure socialists (who are very few) reject part 1 as a consideration, as if people would be as productive no matter what.  Pure capitalists (radical libertarians) reject Part 2 as a consideration.  Many of today's Repugs seem to think Part 2 is actually a bad thing.

          Mainstream ideology balances Part 1 with Part 2.  Current copyright law does basically nothing for Part 2.  My view is that copyrights should last long enough so as not to overly discourage the making of such materials, but only that long.

          Few songs (or movies, etc.) make much money more than six years after they're released, although there are exceptions (but those exceptions almost always made lots of money in the first six years).

          Therefore, I feel that a six year limit won't mean much less production (Part 1) and would be fantastic for Part 2.

          If you think I've gone wrong, please tell me where.  If it's just property rights, then on this specific issue you're right-wing, even if on other issues you aren't.  That isn't awful.  I have right of center views on a few issues, while I'm overall left of center.  But can you tell me why a left of center individual, one who cares about Part 2, should want nearly unlimited copyright terms?

          Economic -3.50/Social -2.41 "Please don't eat the moderates." (Yes, someone else used that before me, but it's perfect.)

          by CenterLeft on Sat Apr 14, 2007 at 01:54:03 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

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