The Trichordist Random Reader Weekly News & Links Sun Jul 22nd

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Recent posts on The Trichordist:
* The DMCA is Broken…
* Artist! : Be The Change, Send A Letter – JULY 25th Deadline <- We’re not Kidding, Do it if you haven’t!

For those who remain confused about the difference between FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION and FREE BEER (er uhm music) please read this report from Amnesty International regarding the band Pussy Riot and do take action. Freedom of Expression is truly a right to be protected and preserved, as ARTISTS RIGHTS ARE HUMAN RIGHTS:

We’ve been alerted to a couple of websites (and organizations?) that are fighting against illegal artist exploitation on the front of cyberlockers and payment processors (Visa, Master Card, Pay Pal, Etc). Read more here:

Thanks to Copyhype for noticing this one, an epic and essential read “How Free Is Ruining Everything” from Eamonn Forde at

Kim Dotcom is not Robbin Hood. The billionaire and alleged mass scale media pirate is awaiting trial and created a video this week that has been described as a pirates “Triumph of the Will” or even perhaps in it’s absurdity, “A Burns for all Seasons.” Prof Jonathan Taplin from the USC Annenberg School of Innovation muses in this blog post, “The Big Lie”:

Speaking of Kim Dotcom, Billboard reports that the Judge that ruled the raid on the compound was illegal has now stepped down and out of the case for bias regarding a comment made at an EFF event… wow, just wow… Maybe he should have stepped down before making a ruling?

Ok, ok, ok… last one… it’s a Kim Dotcom-athon… Indie filmmaker Ellen Seidler writes an open letter to Kim in response to his “Letter To Hollywood”, read more from this guest post at Copyright Alliance:

So now that Coke A Cola can legally use music from any band on Spotify to sell it’s drinks, doesn’t this imply some kind of endorsement? If for example a playlist by Coldplay is embeded on a Coke A Cola website, the previous cost of licensing that music for that application would have been very expensive. Whereas this could be very good for developing artists, it could also be exploitative of established ones. We’re not really sure what this means, but we’re interested to see how it actually is implemented. Read more on the Coke A Cola website:

Here’s a way to bring attention to the issues of artists rights and illegal online exploitation. Woman strips in public to protest e-book pirates, ZDNet reports:

Digital Music News reports on absurdity at it’s best from Richard Stallman. Perhaps a future Nyan Cat Award Winner?
and a response here from the cynical musician:

Pirates want to go legit? Well… not so fast, Torrent Freak reports:

Who is the internet anyway? We’re always kinda amazed when a singular entity or point of view “speaks for the internet” as if there is no social, economic, geographic or political diversity. Is the “Internet’ a demographic onto it’s own, and if so, what defines that demographic? Which begs the question, does “the internet” speak for you (as an artist, as an individual)? Though this entry is somewhat cute, it is also disturbing to see “the internet” as a single block with a Borg like hive mind… TechDirt reports:

The French Supreme Court May Order Google to block unlicensed, infringing, illegal sites, ‘Torrent,’ ‘RapidShare’ and ‘Megaupload’. Again, Torrent Freak reports:

Last but not least, several of our friends report success using Google’s DMCA Search Link De-Listing tool for infringing links, try it for yourself! Up until recently the only way to send infringing link DMCA notices to Google was via MAIL or FAX (not kidding). More on this to follow…

The Trichordist Random Reader Weekly News & Links Sun Jul 15th

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This past (two) weeks posts on The Trichordist:
* Declaration Of Free Milk and Cookies
* CopyLike.Org – It’s Not Stealing, Are You Sure?
* Musician’s POV: Five Things Spotify (and others) Could Do Today to Level the Playing Field for Independent Artists
* Second Nyan Cat Award Goes To The Fake Thomas Jefferson And His Copyleft Creators
* PETm : People For The Ethical Treatment Of Musicians
* The Return of Orphan Works: A Review of the 2008 Shawn Bentley Orphan Works Act Part 1

The attempt for another land grab of creators rights is brewing again, this time in the UK. The video below is an introduction and explanation to get you up to speed. More in depth reporting from Music Tech Policy at the link below:

Artists, Musicians, Creators – U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel is asking for you to “Help Us Shape Our Strategy for Intellectual Property Enforcement.” You can comment directly at this link:!submitComment;D=OMB-2012-0004-0002

We’re very encouraged to see ethical practices by some corporate citizens. PayPal puts on the white hat in support of artist and creators right, denies payments to “File Hosting” site operators, Torrent Freak Reports:
Related from Torrent Freak:
Could these policy changes be the result of one man? Torrent Freak Reports:

Uh Oh… CNET Is Now Facing Hundreds of Millions In Piracy Infringement Penalties… Digital Music News Reports:

Why copyright matters. Beginning in 2013 individual artists become illegible to regain ownership of their masters via termination of transfer of copyrights. This issue alone illustrates the value of copyright to all musicians.

Forbes reports on Google’s Piracy Liability. Essential Reading:

Google misled consumers about their privacy, the FTC’s investigation shows. Google may have to pay $22m fine, Ars Technica Reports:

Fascinating post from 1709 Blog challenges the ISP “Dumb Pipe” and DMCA qualification as such. Contextual Advertising is based on informed knowledge of user behavior, hardly “dumb pipe.” Read more at 1709 Blog (which should be on your blogroll as well!):

David Lowery interviewed by Andrew Orlowski in the UK’s Register, “Lowery: The blue-collar musician at the eye of the copyright storm.”

Copyright Alliance reports on the artists appearing and supporting the Trans Pacific Partnership which protects IP and Artists Rights:

The Trichordist Random Reader Weekly News & Links Sun Jul 8

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Here’s how the internet and tech industry are getting one step closer to dismantling copyright. Essential reading for all creators By Andrew Orlowski from The Register UK:

Radiohead would not exist without early major label funding and another band like them may never have the opportunity to ever exist again. Mike Doughty posts:

The High Price Of Free Music – How Illegal Downloads are Silencing Artists, Daily Finance Reports:

TrustMeImAScientist breaks down the math on Amanda Palmer’s Kickstarter:

UPDATE: A look at how the numbers really look from Spotify, Music Tech Policy Reports:

Why Spotify doesn’t make sense for musicians, The Atlantic Reports:

The ongoing saga of The Oatmeal Vs. FunnyJunk continues, we love Matt Innman. Ars Technica reports:

UPDATE: Grooveshark V Digital Music News, Digital Music News Reports:

Time Magazine reports on the pending Six Strikes Policy for US ISPs and the Center For Copyright Information :

Twitter maintains that users “own” their own tweets. Be nice if artists were allowed to own their own songs. Skip to end, The New York Times reports:

The Village Voice summarizes “All Of The Arguments About Digital Music”… sorta…

Artists Rights are not limited to issues online as Digital Music News reports:

Several artists rights groups responded with links – we’d love to hear from musicians about these Organizations:

The Trichordist Random Reader Weekly News & Links Sun Jul 1

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This past weeks posts on The Trichordist:
* Making Music You Like by Maia Davies
* Breaking News!! Band Embraces New Technology and Business model.
* A Brief History of Artists’ Control of Their Product by Jonathan Segel
* CopyLike.Org – Music is Free!
*Recording Tips for the Loudness Wars: An Interview with Bob Ludwig of Gateway Mastering
*CopyLike.Org – If You Like Open Source and Creative Commons

Highly recommended reading from The Cynical Musician on how internet and tech companies have conflated arguments about technology to justify the for profit illegal exploitation of creators work;

U.S. Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator Victoria Espinel published a post on HuffPo to “Help Us Shape Our Strategy for Intellectual Property Enforcement.” July 25 is the deadline for your input;

Ya know… it’s really telling when an heir to big oil recognizes that the practices of big oil and big tech appear to look pretty much the same, The Hill reports;

“The New Busking” illustrates the challenge for musicians to spend more time fundraising than making music. Essential reading on the downside to “Crowdfunding” and it’s practical application for most artists;

Billboard responds to several reports of claims by Spotify on its payments to labels as being second to Itunes in revenue…

The Spotify hype machine is in full effect promoting mix and match stats that don’t seem to correlate into any better cohesive reporting on actual transparency for payments, Digital Music News reports;

Speaking of Spotify, Hypebot also reports more numbers from the company, but again seem to fall short on review. Reader comments are particularly insightful as many readers express frustration over the lack of transparency in reporting;

Paypal said to cut off payment processing to VPN provider as it does to other torrent sites. It’s nice to see a company with ethical practices. Brands and Ad Networks should take note,  Torrent Freak reports;

Hypebot reports on a decline in unique Facebook visitors;

Also according to Hypebot Amanda Palmer will distribute her new album in the US via Alliance Entertainment who also distributed the Social Network soundtrack for Trent Reznor;

This editorial from Torrent Freak illustrates the complete disconnect between artists and those who exploit them. No, you are not pro-artist because you say you are, you are pro-artist when you respect the artists choices whether you agree with them or not…

The Trichordist Random Reader Weekly News & Links Sun Jun 24

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We are humbled and overwhelmed as without a doubt the biggest story of the week for Artists was the debate inspired by David Lowery’s “Letter To Emily” in response to a post by an intern at NPR’s “All Songs Considered.” What followed was an out pouring of support by musicians, artists, creators of all kinds and music fans. We are grateful to everyone who took the time to read David’s thoughtful words, discuss, retweet and repost on Facebook. In a few short days the voice of artists sharing the response resulted in attention from major media news outlets such as Time Magazine, USA Today, The LA Times, The NY Times, MSNBC, Forbes and countless others. The point is not so much whether these outlets agreed or disagreed with David in part or in whole, but rather that the voice of artists uniting on the issue of fair compensation became unavoidable as a mainstream topic of conversation. Probably our favorite report of the week came from Digital Music News who stated, “Our Digital Innocence Just Died. And David Lowery Killed It…“.

We also want to thank all of the artists who also spoke their minds in the comments, Tweets and other posts.  We want to continue to support you and invite you to suggest posts if you’d like to write on the Trichordist as many of you have.

Of course there were some who disagreed, but that’s why it’s called debate, right? At least this time both sides were heard.  Although we had no idea that so many of you guys would pass it forward to your friends and fans—hundreds and hundreds of thousands of you—we were really impressed by your efforts and the overwhelmingly positive support you gave to David.


Hypebot and WhoSampled present information and an inforgraphic on 30 years of Sampling which appears to directly contradict claims made by anti-artists rights groups about the benefits of innovation in copyright when all stakeholders are compensated fairly.

Interesting reports from Japan passing a law that would jail illegal downloaders:

Pirates really don’t like going to Jail…

Pirates and Jail part two… Appears that Judge in Germany favors Fair and Ethical Internet:

Digital Music News reports on how Major Advertisers appear to support YouTube Piracy:

In related news Hypebot reports Google/YouTube to take legal action against YouTube to MP3 sites:

Amanda Palmer signs a distribution deal with the Cooking Vinyl Record Label:

Most artists sell less than 100 Downloads per year, probably not what TuneCore and Jeff Price want to hear. Digital Music News reports on the economic reality for most musicians:

The Trichordist Random Reader Weekly News & Links Sun Jun 17

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This past weeks posts on The Trichordist:
* The Wall Of Shame Continues…
* CopyLike.Org – Pay Creators Like You Pay Everyone Else
* FarePlay.Org – An Open Letter
* Launch & Iterate, Google’s Permissionless Innovation
* Google Launches “Hot Trends”, The Pirate Bay Tops News Items…
* Artists Deserve To Be Compensated For Their Work by Mark Isham (Guest Post)

The biggest story of the week is no doubt the Pro-Creator/Copyright win in the court of public opinion which has the pro-piracy crowd tongue tied. Oatmeal Versus FunnyJunk is no doubt a case study for creators when looking at the illegal exploitation of their work. We applaud Matt Inman for turning the tables on those illegally exploiting his work in such a profound way. There’s much to be found on the Web this week about this story, and it deserves it’s own in depth post, until then this brief overview from Copyhype is our favorite:

21 Cents per stream? We’re watching this one with interest. New music streaming service Arena says, “101 Distribution has announced the launch of 101 Arena, the first and only free streaming music service to pay 100 percent of all advertising revenue generated directly to artists and film makers.” To put this in perspective, Spotify is only paying out .005 Cents per Stream according to most published accounts. More info at this link from PR Newswire:

Independent film distributor Kathy Wolf has launched a legal and legitimate online movie distribution and sharing platform. We’re always excited to see new models evolve that respond to the marketplace while respecting creators rights. The Huffington Post Reports:

Here’s a fun little post we found from Moses Avalon this week following a panel at the Music and Entertainment Industry Educators Association Summit. Nice plugs for both Robert Levine’s “Free Ride” and David Lowery’s “New Boss / Old Boss”. More here on the StumbleUpon Blog of Moses Avalon:

There is a lot of debate over how search engines operate, including the filtering and ranking of search returns. The way search engines operate is suggested to effect everything from consumer choices to the aiding in the illegal exploitation of copyrighted works, SearchEngineLand.Com reports:

Think Social Media is a game changer? Maybe… Digital Music News Reports 93% of Americans still listen to Broadcast Radio…

Will Apple, Amazon and Google own .Love and .Music? Forbes is calling it the greatest land grab in history as tech and internet companies battle for the next generation of root level domain addresses.

One of our favorite thinkers, Jaron Lanier gave a fantastic speech at the Personal Democracy Forum titled, “How to Not Create a New Cyber Plutocracy.” You can read more about Jaron and the Personal Democracy Forum at the link below, the YouTube video of his talk follows.



The Trichordist Random Reader News & Links Sun Jun 10

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This past weeks posts on The Trichordist;
* How Copyright Encourages Creativity In Hollywood
* Artists Know They Enemy, Who’s Ripping You Off and How…
* Google Tells Ari Emanuel To Change His Business
* Artist Exploitation Calculator – Internet Edition
* Musicians, What to do when you find your Lyrics on Pirate Lyric Sites
* CopyLike.Org – Evil Corporations, We Don’t Like Them

We discovered two Artists Rights groups this week definitely worthy of support:
and in English via Google Translate;

Electronic Musicians grapple with having their work being Illegally Exploited, Synthtopia reports:

Billy Corgan and Noel Gallagher are quoted in this fantastic piece by the UK’s Guardian about the illegal exploitation of artists work on line and how the next generation of upcoming developing artists are negatively effects, well done;

Writer David Newhoff wrote a compelling piece this week for Copyright Alliance addressing the frequent “Copyleft” argument that copyright and free speech can not co-exist;

Spotify was the subject of hot debate this week as both Digital Music News and Hypebot picked up and republished the current “Steaming Price Index” from The Trichordist;

Speaking of Spotify more and more artists are realizing the model is unsustainable, artists Hyland and Lewis discuss;

We found this enlightening and ironic.  A Pirate Party Australia Spokesperson  is opposed to Spotify, guess they don’t like the competition. What does it say about a commercial legal service when the pirate party doesn’t like it for cutting in on their business?

Editor’s note:  Mr Olbrycht-palmer wrote us a very polite note begging to differ on our characterization above. He notes he was speaking for himself not in his official capacity as Press Officer for  PPAU.  We stand corrected! And it is duly noted.   He has written a thoughtful rebuttal to our piece here:

Not surprising, the same people ripping off artists are also trying to rip off their governments. Once a thief, always a thief, good luck with that, Torrent Freak reports;

This one is so over the top it should be eligible for a Nyan Cat Award as presented by The Magic Beaver. TechDirt goes down the rabbit hole thinking about the likelihood of copyright infringement post-Singularity, pure comedy at it’s best;


The Trichordist Random Reader News & Links Sun Jun 3

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Always insightful and entertaining Ari Emanuel appeared at All things Digital’s D10 Conference this week;

That didn’t take long, Google’s “Transparency Report” on DMCA take downs shown to be anything but, Digital Music News Reports;

And, another look at Google’s Transparency Masquerade, Ethical Fan reports;

A fantastic piece about how the EFF has lost it’s way, TechCrunch Reports;

Andrew Keen has a new book, Digital Vertigo;

The US Chamber of Congress released a new report this week, “IP Creates Jobs For America.”;

Digital Music News reports that despite the “internet hype” traditional media still dominates;

Sean Parker & Daniel Ek Dance Around What Artists Get Paid On Spotify, Hypebot reports;

An interesting look at the growing pains of YouTube Celebrities, Gigaom reports;

Corante picks up David Lowery’s “New Boss, Old Boss” and writer Alan Wexelblat largely agrees with him, “he [Lowery] also hits on a couple of points I’ve made in other Copyfight posts: artists need to get paid, and that includes the large and often invisible team behind the guy in the spotlight. Digital downloads are not returning large amounts to artists. Gatekeeper companies, particularly Apple, are taking a big chunk of the dollars spent through them – in some cases a bigger chunk than a standard label would have taken. Tech companies are astonishingly hypocritical in the cavalier way they treat copyrights and the covetous way they treat their own patents. “

Ari Emanuel at D10;

Sean Parker and Daniel Ek at D10;


The Trichordist Random Reader Weekly News & Links Sun May 27

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If you have not visited, please do so – it is a wealth of information for Creators and Artists Rights!

The ongoing Amanda Palmer experiment (like those previously done by NIN and Radiohead) continues it’s fascination in the media, interestingly, this week Palmer had this comment,“i don’t want this album to be remembered as “the kickstarter record.” i do want this record to explode. and i want this record to explode because it is awesome.” Read more on her Kickstarter Blog:

Those illegally exploiting artists work commercially without consent or compensation insist that they are providing “advertising” for the creator, but yet the largest, most popular internet site in the world (Face Book) just lost $10m in advertising funding from GM due to ineffectiveness… a forth coming post will explore in more depth, for now, Forbes reports:

Related to the above is the fascinating insight of how valuable web traffic is (or rather is not) in helping to promote creative works. Cartoonist Lars Martinson experienced at 25,000% increase in traffic on his website and only sold 23 e-books as a result, details from the artist’s blog here:

This week Google revealed stats on DMCA takedown requests for it’s web search – over 300,000 per week and climbing, Tech Blogs respond, “What Problem?”, Digital Music News reports:

Another interesting piece from Digital Music News, if you want your music to be valued, start by valuing it yourself and charging for it:

We found this debate between German pop star Jan Delay and Christopher Lauer, a Pirate Party member of the Berlin state parliament interesting, given that the Pirate Part does not want to “put all copyright holders out of work.” No, they would just like to “change the rules regarding copyright holders and distributors.” Right, change the rules so people don’t get paid… Fascinating… Germany’s Spiegel reports:

Publishers Association chief executive Richard Mollet speaks up on Artists Rights, The Bookseller reports:

Filmmaker David Newhoff responds to the Supreme Court decision to not hear the appeal request in the Tenenbaum case, “What the children of the digital age need to learn as they are now entering the world of grown-ups is that it’s not the song or the movie or the book they’re stealing, but the rights of the creator.” Seems like common sense, more at David’s blog:

Music Tech Policy reports on Google’s on going anti-labor attempts at Union-Busting:

We discovered this week that many artists are unaware of this service that allows DIY artists without a label to report venue sales to Soundscan:

We were particularly inspired this week by the courage of a wounded Israeli soldier turned musician:




The Trichordist Random Reader Weekly News & Links Sun May 20

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The end of an era as Roadrunner Records is shuttered and causes one writer to ponder what the true cost of free music is to consumers in the long run, the Galleon reports:

The Cynical Musician reports on “The Curious Case Of The Pirate Bay” after mandatory ISP blocking has gone into effect in several Countries…

A great article from the Austin Chronicle looks at the realities and effects of the “Spotify Effect” on developing artists. The band “Quiet Company has garnered over 60,000 song plays since October. For those 60,000 streams, the band has earned $342.” Read more here:

Blair Witch Project director goes on record against Piracy as it “makes it very difficult for micro-budget filmmakers to make a living.”

A funny thought by Wayne Rosso that labels would sell to Google for $1b each… highly unlikely. Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free? Plus is Google actually bought the labels, they would also be buying the roylaties obligations, and we just can’t see that happening…

Has Silicon Valley created it’s own religious cult in “The Singularity?” The New York Times reports:

Eric Clemons reviews an ongoing legacy of bad behavior by Google at the Huffington Post:

A very interesting and insightful interview with Jim Steyer regarding Children and Online Privacy at TechCrunch:

Musicians and bands always ask, how do I rank higher on Google, well, here’s how to rank #1, by Matt Cutts:

hint, use adwords… use adsense…