‘In the last three years, David Lowery has become perhaps most the important and ardent spokesperson for artist rights in the digital era. Who is he?’
Balanced, funny and in depth profile of fellow Trichordist writer David Lowery. Must read.
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The new payola?
Performers get paid a small royalty each time one of their songs is played on Internet radio, at a rate set by a Royalty Court at the Library of Congress. But Internet radio and labels can strike individual deals, as Pandora did with Merlin. The Internet service will recommend Merlin artists over those not affiliated with the consortium in exchange for paying Merlin’s musicians a lower royalty rate.
Merlin artists get more spins, and Pandora winds up paying less in royalties than it would if were giving those same spins to non-Merlin artists. Plus, consortium labels will get to suggest favorite tracks.
READ OR LISTEN TO THE FULL STORY AT NPR:
Posted in David Lowery, Pandora Royalty Rates, Royalty Rates, Songwriter Rights, the future of music
Tagged david lowery, Merlin, NPR, pandora, Payola, Preferred Plays, Reduced Rates
David Lowery has become both beloved and notorious over the last year as one of the musicians most critical of the ways musicians are paid in the digital era. The Camper van Beethoven and Cracker singer brings an artist’s rage and a quant’s detached rigor to his analysis of the music business.
He’s currently fired up about a federal lawsuit filed in New York in which several record labels have sued Pandora (and before that, Sirius FM) for neglecting to pay royalties for songs recorded before Feb. 15, 1972. Here’s how Billboard summarizes the suit: “The labels say both digital music services take advantage of a copyright loophole, since the master recording for copyright wasn’t created federally until 1972. … But the labels claim that their master recordings are protected by individual state copyright laws and therefore deserve royalty payments.”
Lowery thinks the loophole provides a way for Pandora to simply not pay older musicians for their work — while profiting from it themselves. The case could get bigger and change in strange ways, with broad implications.
READ THE FULL STORY AT SALON:
Technologists in Silicon Valley love to tell artists we need to update our business model.
This is hilarious since each of my businesses have been profitable for decades. Stunning when you look at just how unprofitable these Silicon Valley Companies actually are. Twitter for instance lost $645 million dollars last year. Jaw dropping when you consider that their total revenues were $646 million dollars. They spent 2 dollars for every 1 dollar of revenue. And if you look at their losses they are accelerating.
Now consider the fact that the City of San Francisco also gave them approximately $56 million in tax beaks. This is while the city has been pushing to slash benefits to city workers.
Yes maybe Camper Van Beethoven needs to update our business model to include tax breaks and political cronyism.
Posted in Artist Rights, Magic Beaver, Music Streaming, Musician's POV, Silly Con Valley Insight
Tagged adapt and evolve, Advice, Business Models, david lowery, IPO, Losses, musicians, Net Revenue, Spotify, Twitter
When he’s not on the road touring, Lowery is teaching students at the University of Georgia about the business of the music industry.
He is a vocal critic of that industry, and particularly how technology – from illegal downloading to new streaming services – has made it harder for artists to keep control of their work and to earn a living from it.
WATCH THE FULL STORY ON BBC VIDEO:
As a result of the publication of the UGA Undesirable Lyric Website List and action taken by the National Music Publishers Association there have been a number of noteworthy updates. Many sites have come forward wishing to obtain licenses and others updated their licensing compliance. We updated our database accordingly. We also learned of at least one website that now has an expired licenses.
In addition we are now ready to expand the study to examine which brands are advertising on these unlicensed sites.
Finally the next iteration of the list will be followed by a list of brands which appear on the top 10 Undesirable Lyric websites.
READ THE FULL REPORT AT UGA LYRICS:
#8 Musicians Declare War on Spotify
Why it matters: Musicians like David Lowery and Damon Krukowski have been questioning the royalty practices of streaming services and online radio for years. When it’s the frontman of the biggest band in the world calling bullshit, though, people start listening. Streaming was supposed to be the next evolution of music consumption, but if the royalty models are really as bad as they’ve been made out to be (and by all accounts, they are), that particular evolutionary branch may be stunted. In the end, that might be for the best: a financial model that doesn’t support new artists will, inevitably, cripple the music industry.
Yorke called companies like Spotify “the last desperate fart of a dying corpse” and said, “What happens next is the important part.” This is where Neil Young and his long in-development PONO music service might have to step in. Set to launch next year, PONO reportedly solves the audio loss issues Beck pointed out, though there hasn’t been much word on pricing models. Still, Yorke remarked that musicians “can build the shit” themselves, and Young’s company may be the first step in a new direction. Either way, the medium listeners absorb music is going to keep changing for everyone involved. –Ben Kaye
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AGCOM, an independent Electronic Communications Authority of Italy, devised various measures to bring down the pirate websites and their owners. The measures put forward have been unanimously approved. The new system that ensures the fast removal of copyrighted content by hosts and blocking of various file-sharing websites will be implemented on March 31, 2014.
In the past, Italy has emerged as a nation that is taking proactive actions to tackle pirate sites and other online piracy issues. Numerous leading torrent websites like Kicka** Torrents and The Pirate Bay are blocked at the Internet Service Provider (ISP) level after orders from different courts.
READ THE FULL STORY AT IBT: