File-sharing not a threat to musicians and artists... what do you feel?

Discussion in 'Bandroom News - User Submitted' started by TheMusicMan, Dec 8, 2004.

  1. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    [IMGLEFT][/IMGLEFT]File-sharing not a threat to musicians and artists... what do you feel?

    Internet file sharing has been one of the hottest-burning controversies for years. A new survey of musicians and artists promises to throw gas on the fire. The report, "Artists, Musicians and the Internet," is the first large-scale survey of artists and musicians about the Internet's impact. Its findings contrast with the information that has come from the RIAA and other industry sources.

    Two-thirds of the musicians surveyed said that file sharing poses a minor threat or no threat at all. In fact, artists and musicians are more likely to say that the Internet has helped them make more money than they are to say it has hurt them.

    Most musicians and artists that download music think that downloads have either increased or had no effect on the amount of money that they spend on music.

    Highlights of the report

    • artists have embraced the Internet as a creative and workspace, where they can communicate, collaborate, and promote their work
    • Many artists say the Internet has been a boon to their marketing efforts
    • The Internet helps artists network with other artists, communicate with their fans, and stay in touch with friends when they are on the road
    • Artists are not deeply concerned about the file sharing that happens online. They want control over their creations, but don't consider Internet piracy a big threat
    • Artists are split about what constitutes fair use of digital material
    • Online artists are also active consumers of media content online. But those who download files say if they get content for free, they usually support the artist or author in other ways.
    [font=verdana, arial, geneva, sans-serif][size=-1] No Wild-West Attitude

    While artists and musicians have embraced the Net, they don't buy into the "Information wants to be free" attitude of some Web users. The Pew report found that musicians and artists think that unauthorized online file sharing is wrong and that current copyright laws are appropriate. There are some major divisions, though, about what constitutes appropriate copying and sharing of digital files.

    Last edited: Dec 9, 2004
  2. DublinBass

    DublinBass Supporting Member

    near Dublin
    I don't think there is any difference in lending a friend a CD to listen to and sending somebody a digital copy of the tune (as long as they delete it when they are done sampling it). However, I don't know that most people delete it when they are done.

    I also think friends burning CD's for each other is more of a threat than online digital piracy.
  3. gorgeous_si

    gorgeous_si New Member

    I think the problem with file sharing and the internet is really caused by the industry's inability to keep up, and to provide us with decent music. I don't want to fork out £10 for an album with two or three decent songs! And why would I buy the the CD single, when I could download the track in minutes?

    Someone recently suggested a far superior method: Custom Internet Albums.

    An artist could be signed to a label for a number of tracks rather than a number of albums (eg 200). Every song produced is then 'single quality', or at least better than your average 'filler track'. Then Joe Punter logs onto the artist's site, auditions a number of tracks and selects the 10 (or however many is deemed appropriate) tracks they want (which may include music videos where available), and pays an appropriate fee (around the £10 mark). The server compiles them into an album, and generates an appropriately pretty track list 'on the fly' should you want to print a CD cover. You could even get 'compilations' where you can access any tracks from one label rather than an artist.

    This way, you get a decent album, without tracks you don't like. The customer is in control of the experience meaning they actually get value for their money, and the performers don't have to target their whole repitoire towards one target audience.
  4. neiltwist

    neiltwist Active Member

    you can do that on several websites now Si, or download iTunes.

    while I'm here though,

    we did go through a stage where the most profitable thing for labels to do was to manufacture bands, so in all fairness, we should blame the fact that talent hasn't progressed on society as a whole. But this is changing. I think it is fair to say that people will pay less than a pound for a song they like, but when they'd have to buy an album for it, people will just download.

    What I find curious is the fact that the artists feel that it isn't affecting them, or is helping them. But they are refering to the internet when they say that.

    My view is that if we bought more albums instead of downloads, then maybe the labels would get more money, but how much would be passed on to the artists?
  5. gorgeous_si

    gorgeous_si New Member

    I've never used iTunes ... my 56k modem would hate me for life :roll:

    But does it really let you compile an album of tracks? From what I've seen it's single tracks at 79p each. I'm talking about selecting 15 or so, and it could set up a personalised download for you ... This would ideally have artists releasing larger volumes of music (if there's only 12 tracks to choose from, you may as well just have an ordinary album). Maybe the artists wouldn't like the extra work involved, but I think if the user had more freedom, the artist would see increased sales.

    The problem with single tracks is that artists can get away with releasing fewer decent tracks for download ... as long as a user can get the exactly the same thing for free, record companies will struggle to keep file sharing down. By offering a better (bigger) choice of tracks than are available on their album releases, by download only, they would encourage more fans to do the legal and fare thing.

    Bands could also circumvent the whole need for labels. With only recording equipment and a website, any artist could give themselves decent representation and have access to a vastly bigger audience.
  6. *Lucy*

    *Lucy* New Member

    I would definitely agree with you here. If i hear rave reviews of an artist but i've never listened to them I'd possibly download a few tracks and then buy their album if I like it. But if one of my friends copied the CD for me I wouldnt go out and pay £10 for a legit copy just because I liked it. This must be where the problem lies. Anyone agree?
  7. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    ... yup indeed it does. You can also preview each track before you decide to purchase and download it. You can select all the tracks from an album, or tracks from multiple albums, artists and génres - it is totally up to you what you download. The only restriction is where an album has say a very lengthy track (such as my fav génre - Ambient) - you cannot purchase this track on its own... you may have to purchase the album to be able to get that track.

    iTunes in the US now also accepts PayPal... I am sure the UK iTunes will soon follow suit.

    One criticism though and that is the exchange rate. Tracks on the US site are $.99 and UK are £79 - not a vrey favorable exchange rate at all really and I don't think you can purchase from the US site with a UK credit/card... not fair!

    I will look for some interesting articles on this if peeps are interested; I have read quite a few recently.

    Here's a thread as a starter for 10...
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2004
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