Reports from or about the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), the Canadian Recording Industry Association (CRIA) and other regional lobbyists for the legacy methods of creation, distribution and funding of music they represent.

Amazon Kicks Off DRM-Less Music Store

See a Reuters Article and a press release about a new DRM-free music download site in beta from Amazon.

Amazon MP3 has over 2 million songs from more than 180,000 artists represented by over 20,000 major and independent labels. Amazon MP3 complements's existing selection of over 1 million CDs to now offer customers more selection of physical and digital music than any other retailer.

Business models

Interesting reading this morning.

On the one hand, a Vancouver Sun article with some fascinating quotes from Graham Henderson (president of the CRIA), and on the other, a Locus Online article by Cory Doctorow about the economics of giving stuff away for free.

Wal-Mart jumps on the DRM-free bandwagon

Ars reports that Wal-Mart's online music store now sells DRM-free music from both EMI and Universal.

Given that Wal-Mart is the world's largest music retailer, and that they clearly see value in being able to market the music as ready to "play on the ipod", how long before they force Warner and Sony BMG to follow suit ?

Hopefully it's before our government decides to enact our own version of the DMCA...

Labels "taking" (I won't say stealing) money from musicians yet again.

An article by Greg Sandoval for CNet talks about one of the many problems in the music industry caused by the old-economy labels.

Frequent readers of my BLOG will notice a pattern, with this issue being a variation of the Royalty vs. license issue I wrote about earlier.

Testing the legacy major label recording industry's (mis)interptetation of "Making Available"

We may eventually get a more sane interpretation of the "Making Available" right included in the 2 1996 WIPO treaties. A case involving the RIAA's (mis)interpretation is making its way through the US courts under their DMCA, with a reply Memorandum in Support of Motion to Dismiss Complaint filed by the RIAA in Warner v. Cassin.

Royalty vs. license

An article by Greg Sandoval, Staff Writer, CNET talks about the mixed-bag of issues that the music industry is dealing with. There are some aspects I agree with, and others that I do not (such as blaming music fans in any way).

ITWorld Canada: Linux experts look for lessons from SCO suit

An ITWorldCanada article by Shane Schick quotes from both FLOSS proponents (Mike Gifford, Shad Young) and opponents (Barry Sookman) looking at the impact of the recent court decision against SCO.

As you read Mr. Sookman's comments about FLOSS licensing, remember that his ideas actually apply more to non-FLOSS licensing than FLOSS licensing. As a lobbiest for CRIA and other businesses promoting the knowledge as property ideology he may be unaware that the licenses of his own clients are "more of a philosophical document than a precise legal document" and often stray far outside the boundaries of what is legally enforceable to promote that ideology.

Kids justify illegal downloads, study finds

A Reuters article states the obvious: like their parents and the rest of society, kids justify things they do which they think might be "wrong" but do it anyway.

My comment:

I find these types of surveys frustrating. I suspect that just like the invalid statistics from the BSA/RIAA/MPAA, this study didn't take into account the differences between perfectly legal authorized downloading/sharing and unauthorized downloading/sharing.

Legacy labels recognizing that their future requires change?

In a Reuters article published by CNet, Warner Music Chief Executive Edgar Bronfman had the following to say on a conference call with analysts on Tuesday.

"While the overall music business, including management, touring, sponsorship, merchandising..., is growing, the recording business at present is not,"

The "iPod tax" - CPCC's proposed levy on devices capable of storing digital audio, and a better way forward

I was called yesterday morning to ask for an interview later in the day about the latest CPCC levy. Since that interview didn't happen, I want to post some of my thoughts on the levy. What I want to say is far more than could have been in an interview anyway.

(See also: p2pnet republishing of article)

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