Aurous has nothing to do with SOPA | The Illusion of More

In fact, when the lawsuit was first announced, The Trichordist rather humorously (though not at all facetiously) announced an “office betting pool” as to how soon the Electronic Frontier Foundation would file an amicus brief on behalf of Aurous. And while no serious IP attorney may reasonably defend Aurous against the infringement claims, that hasn’t stopped the EFF from repeating the latest mantra of Internet industry defenders: That [insert plaintiff here] is behaving as though SOPA became law. Although the EFF has not filed an amicus brief or anything so official on behalf of Aurous, here’s the tweet they sent out, as Ellen Seidler reports on Vox Indie:

Once again, @RIAA asks a court to order the entire world to block & filter an app they don’t like. https://t.co/Qwg138pFPB#SOPApower

While, all this SOPA chatter may be pretty good spin—and a great way to belabor the narrative that rights holders are just insidious, draconian, evildoers hating on freedom—the references to SOPA are entirely specious. I mean not even close.

Bottom Line: Aurous is a Domestic Business

SOPA/PIPA were exclusively written to target foreign-based piracy sites that are beyond the reach of U.S. jurisdiction for criminal proceedings, with the objective of starving these sites of both U.S. traffic and U.S. revenue.

READ THE FULL POST AT THE ILLUSION OF MORE:
http://illusionofmore.com/aurous-nothing-to-do-with-sopa/

Final Recap, News and Last Links of 2012…

Grab the coffee!

Recent Posts:
* What Can Songwriters Do: Copyright Office Comment Period Ends Today for Mechanical Royalty Statements of Account
* The Return of Orphan Works: A Review of the 2008 Shawn Bentley Orphan Works Act Part 1
* Ending Decade Old Arguments : How the Promise of the Internet has Failed Artists and Musicians…
* Billy Corgan Exploited By… Citi Bank, AT&T, Target, Virgin Atlantic, Mazda, Neiman Marcus, Musicians Friend, Hertz, BMW, Audi, Boston Market, Urban Outfitters, Williams Sonoma
* Songwriter comments on Section 115 Rulemaking
* FTC Treats Google With Kid Gloves and No Transparency
* Fair Pay for Air Play, Terrestrial Radio Performance Royalties for Musicians
* The Piracy-Pandora Connection: Can the Super Bowl, Oscars and Grammys Move the Needle on Brand Supported Piracy?
* The Return of Orphan Works: Trojan Horse: Orphan Works and the War on Authors by Brad Holland

FROM AROUND THE WEB

Seattle Weekly:
* It’s Time for Artists to Fight Piracy as Vigorously as They’ve Challenged Pandora

“…it’s time for artists to band together to set the story straight. Don’t leave it to the few brave enough to speak strongly on the matter. There needs to be a large, coordinated effort by bands big and small to tell their story–to sign a letter to fans explaining how devastating piracy is to their ability to make music for a living (or at all).”

Vox Indie:
* IP and Instagram–a Teaching Moment Perhaps?
* Should More Artists Speak Out Against Piracy?
* Creative Commons Celebrates 10 Years

CNN Money:
* Instagram can now sell your photos for ads
* Instagram says it won’t sell your photos to advertisers

Copyhype:
* Freeloading: How Our Insatiable Hunger for Free Content Starves Creativity, by Chris Ruen

The Guardian UK:
* Intellectual property crime unit to be set up by City police

Torrent Freak:
* U.S. and Russia Announce Online Piracy Crackdown Agreement
* Anti-Piracy Chief Patents “Pay Up or Disconnect” Scheme

Mashable:
* “T-Shirts and Touring” as Revenue for Artists just took a left Turn (YOLO)

Brian Pickings:
* The Best Music Books of 2012

Digital Music News:
* 10 People That Totally Changed the Industry In 2012…

(11) Oh, there’s one more guy…In one fiery and insanely-viral post, performer and professor David Lowery somehow managed to reframe the entire debate over technology, piracy, and the plight of the artist. And, draw attention from seemingly every corner of both the tech and creative communities. It was the biggest post of the year for the music industry, and potentially, the start of a very different type of discussion in 2013.

* Major Label Lobbying vs. Google Lobbying, 2012…
* The State of Music Subscription, December, 2012…
* USC Is Now Researching the Amount of Advertising Flowing Into Pirate Sites…
* Google Exec: If You Really Want to Kill Piracy, Then Kill the Advertisers Who Support It…

Ad Land:
* Senate passes a resolution asking Backpage.com to drop adult classifieds
* Adland booted from Google Adsense due to PETA’s misogynist ads

Copyright Alliance:
* Capitalist Copyrights: A Republican Reply to “Three Myths about Copyright”
* MUSIC Act introduced
* YouTube Moves for Safe Harbor Against Viacom

Daily Dot:
* YouTube strips Universal and Sony of 2 billion fake views

The Cynical Musician:
* Copyright and Scarcity

Weekly Recap & News Sunday Dec 2, 2012

Grab the coffee!

Recent Posts:
* Lars Was First And Lars Was Right
* Zoë Keating’s Request for Internet Transparency met w/ usual Hypocrisy
* The Most Important Fact Academics and The Copyleft Neglect to Mention: Copyright is Optional.
* Giving Thanks for Creators Rights and Copyright
* Congressional Research Service Memo on Constitutionality of IRFA Section 5
* Other Than That Mr Westergren, How Was The Play? IRFA Gets An Ass Whupping
* Or Pandora Could Add Another Minute Of Advertising And Raise Their Revenue 50%
* Video of the “Radio Active” panel at The Future of Music Summit 2012.
* The Internet Radio Fairness Act’s Attack on Free Speech
* This photo says it all
* Google’s Serial Obfuscation: Music Canada,BPI, Billboard Question Whether Google Has Really Lowered Pirate Sites Search Rankings
* IRFA is the Broadcast Industry’s SOPA. Censors Free Speech
* IRFA and the Future of Music Policy Summit: Why Would FOMC Miss An Opportunity to Defend Artist Rights?

IRFA-APLOOZA:

Seeking Alpha :
* The Internet Radio Fairness Act Will Fail

Ars Technica :
* Pandora’s Internet radio bill hits a wall of opposition in Congress

CNET :
* Pandora’s Web radio bill is doomed — well, for now

House Judiciary Committee – Video of the Hearing:
* Music Licensing Part One: Legislation in the 112th Congress

WELL, THIS IS EMBARRASSING – OOOPSIES! THE RSC’s FICTIONAL LOOK AT COPYRIGHT IS RECALLED IN LESS THAN 24 HRS:

Techdirt:
* House Republicans: Copyright Law Destroys Markets; It’s Time For Real Reform
* That Was Fast: Hollywood Already Browbeat The Republicans Into Retracting Report On Copyright Reform

Precursor Blog:
* The Copyright Education of Mr. Khanna — Part 2 Defending First Principles Series

Copyhype:
* Republican Study Committee Policy Brief on Copyright: Part 1
* Republican Study Committee Policy Brief on Copyright: Part 2

Music Tech Policy:
* Critiquing The “Free Culture” Book Report or “The Copyright Education of Mr. Khanna”

FROM AROUND THE WEB:

Mercury News:
* German lawmakers call Google campaign ‘cheap propaganda’

“The campaign initiated by Google is cheap propaganda,” said conservative lawmakers Guenter Krings and Ansgar Heveling.

“Under the guise of a supposed project for the freedom of the internet, an attempt is being made to coopt its users for its own lobbying,” the two said in a statement.

Stereogum:
* Deconstructing: Pandora, Spotify, Piracy, And Getting Artists Paid

Pitchfork:
* Making Cents – Damon Krukowski of Galaxie 500 and Damon & Naomi breaks down the meager royalties currently being paid out to bands by streaming services and explains what the music business’ headlong quest for capital means for artists today.

The Cynical Musician:
* Reco’nize: The Original Cynical Musician (Lars Ulrich)

Billboard:
* Songwriters Are Left Out of Pandora’s Royalty Plan: Guest Post by Downtown Music’s Justin Kalifowitz

The National Review Online:
* Myths and Facts about Copyright

VoxIndie:
* How Are Google’s Anti-Piracy Search Policies Working?

Digital Music News:
* We’ve Written Some of the Biggest Songs In History. And This Is What Pandora Pays Us…
* If You Stream a Song Once a Day, When Does It Pay the Same As a Download?
* My Song Was Played 3.1 Million Times on Pandora. My Check Was $39…
* Finally: A Solution for Pandora’s Financial Problems…

Torrent Freak:
* IMAGiNE BitTorrent Piracy Group “Sysop” Jailed 40 months
* BitTorrent Site Owners Fear European Domain Name Seizures
* Canada Set For Mass BitTorrent Lawsuits, Anti-Piracy Company Warns

Music Tech Policy:
* The Artists, United, Can Never Be Defeated
* Too Big to Fix Part 1: YouTube’s Thimblerig, or What’s Inside Your Black Box Today Mr. Schmidt?

Copyhype:
* Friday’s Endnotes – 11/30/12
* A Brief History of Webcaster Royalties
* The Purposes of Copyright Law and “Anti-Copyright” Arguments

Worth an encore, Lars Ulrich predicts the demise of Artists Rights to Internet Robber Barrons in 2000 on The Charlie Rose Show.

Weekly News and Recap! Sunday Aug 26, 2012

Grab the Coffee!

Recent Posts:
* MegaUpload (MegaVideo) Smoking Gun? Did the site illegally charge for Streaming Movies?
* How to DMCA : Google Web Search, De-Listing Infringing Links
* Aimee Mann Exploited by Wells Fargo Bank, Nationwide Insurance and Others…
* Neko Case Exploited by Macy’s, Levi’s, Princess Cruises, Skype, Yahoo and Others…
* Talib Kweli Exploited by State Farm Insurance, Neiman Marcus, Ferguson/Kohler and Others…
* Death Cab For Cutie Exploited by Google, Target, AT&T, Ford, Urban Outfitters and Others…
* Jared Leto Exploited by Rapidshare, Volkswagon, Ford, LG, Adobe, Target and Others…
* A Commendable Response from Zedo
* SXSW Panels for Artists Rights – Show Your Support @ SXSW Panel Picker

The Sky is (not) Rising…
– The truth is unavoidable. In this post from Digital Music News we see again that not only are the sales of recorded music in decline, but along with it the number of professional musicians are also in decline. For all the spin put forth by the likes of former TuneCore CEO Jeff Price and the Future Of Music Coalition, the truth is the internet has failed to create a stronger professional working class of musicians. Anyone attempting to spin this anyone other way is not working for their own interests and not those of musicians. From the DMN post,

“according to stats supplied by the US Department of Labor, there are 41 percent fewer paid musicians since 1999.”

DMCA Takedown requests to Google up 100% in one month…
– Is anyone really surprised that given a new tool for delisting infringing links from Google Web Search that these numbers have increased. As Torrent Freak reports, “the scale of the issue had largely been hidden.”

A Shill by Any Other Name…
– Google released it’s Supplemental Disclosures, you can read here at scribd.com featuring all the usual suspects and your favorite cast of characters. Listed and described in the document are Public Knowledge, The Electronic Frontier Foundation, Floor 64 CEO Mike Masnick (also of Tech Dirt, but who questions why he was included by Google under the reference to the CCIA that he consults for) and others. The judge who ordered the disclosure rightfully understands that he who pays the piper names the tune. It’s funny how many of these same players appeared to have editorialized the SOPA debate to the benefit of Google’s business interests.

It’s the other guys fault, no really… Rapidshare plays pass the buck…
– Rapidshare pulls a page from the Google playbook in it’s filing to the Intellectual Property Enforcement Coordinator (IPEC) by passing the buck of responsibility for illegal file sharing onto the the search engines, advertisers, pirate sites and ad networks. While this open and honest admission is encouraging, Rapidshare unfortunately is still not taking responsibility for the overwhelming amount of infringing material it is hosting itself. So tell me more about how sophisticated these websites are and why more sophisticated legislation is not the solution? Does this sound familiar?

“Rather than enacting legislation that could stifle innovation in the cloud, the U.S. government should crack down on this critical part of the online piracy network.

The only way that content stored with RapidShare can be accessed by a third party is when a user makes his or her access credentials available to others by posting this information on websites. These very sophisticated websites, often featuring advertising, facilitate the mass indiscriminate distribution of copyrighted content on the Internet and should be the focus of US intellectual property enforcement efforts.”

USA TODAY details the true costs of “Free” Downloads
– We were very encouraged to see a well written report on the reality of illegally artist exploitation online by infringing and pirates sites By Ken Paulson in USA Today. The brief but lucid article details the historical origins of both free speech and copyright as complimentary, not competing principles. Ken writes,

“…this nation adopted two major, interlacing principles: Americans were free to write whatever they wanted and had every right to be compensated for their work. The First Amendment encouraged creativity, and the copyright clause guaranteed compensation.”

Musicians Stand to Lose Again in Battle over Radio Royalties
– It seems no matter where you look today musicians are under fire. Now internet streaming internet services like Pandora and others are hoping to make more money from musicians work, by paying them less royalties. Even major labels let artists collect 100% of their streaming royalties whether or not they’re recouped but Pandora wants to profit more by paying less.  For all the talk of how the internet is liberating and empowering musicians, it seems the in reality the truth is actually very much the opposite. This looks like a pattern–every few years Pandora will try to move the goal posts in their direction by exercising their lobbying muscle.  So much for a “middle class musician.”  Musicians need to be informed about these issues and be vocal in their support of legislative and union representation. We’re very disappointed by the strong position taken by Pandora to not fairly pay artists.  Read more in AFM President Ray Hair’s piece at The Hill.

Gearslutz pulls Spotify advertising after forum users complain
– The web forum Gearslutz caters to musical enthusiasts and hobbyists interested in studio gear. The highly successful site is probably the top meeting place online for this particular demographic of aspiring musicians. This week the site pulled it’s Spotify advertising banners after users on the forum complained that Spotify might well be the end of their professional aspirations. As the Spotify debate rages on, there still appear to be more questions than answers about the transparency of the companies practices and what it’s long term effects will be on the professional music community.

Google concerned over online Piracy?
– We found this story on Ars Technica about the FBI (as opposed to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) seizing the domain names of sites that allegedly participate in Android app piracy. Sooner or later it appears Google will learn that a fair and honest internet is the best way to build a fair and honest businesses. Now if only this solution were available to remedy the sites infringing on musicians work like FilesTube, Rapidshare and others.

The Trichordist Random Reader Weekly News & Links Sun Jul 29

Grab the Coffee!

Recent Posts:
* Wall Of Shame : BMW Willing To “Drive” Without License
^^^ thanks to those who have written to BMW! ^^^
* Five Things That ISPs Can Do Today to Stop Ripping Off Artists
* PayPal to Pirates “No Cash For You”
* Artists: Be The Change, Submit Comments! Deadline EXTENDED to August 10th
^^^ thanks to those who have written comments! ^^^

A worthy Kick Starter that speaks to the power of Music, “A film about the power of music and the social worker who uses it to “awaken” patients with dementia and Alzheimer’s.”
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1406732546/alive-inside-a-story-of-music-and-memory

It seems like every day more and more artists and creators are learning how their work is being illegally exploited and monetized online by companies like Google. In the latest protest we find Pete Townsend of The Who, Brian May of Queen and Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin (the music of all three legendary artists was featured during the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 London Olympics) have issued a statement noting how Google appears to be enabling mass scale piracy. Simon Cowell and others also signed the letter being sent to Prime Minister David Cameron. The letter states “Search engines must “play their part in protecting consumers and creators from illegal sites,” the signatories say, adding that broadband companies and online advertisers must also do more to prevent piracy.” Read more at The Telegraph UK:
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/music/9421537/Simon-Cowell-and-Tinie-Tempah-attack-Google-over-piracy.html

We love it when artist speak up and speak out for themselves! Kim Dotcom is not the “Robin Hood” hero he’d like people to think he is and this week the absurdity of his self generated propaganda was parodied on YouTube, Adland reports:
http://adland.tv/content/kim-dotcom-propaganda-song-vs-premissionless-innovation-remix-lessig-edition

The Kim Dotcom comedy show keeps going… Hollywood TV director Bruce Leddy asks Dotcom, “Can I Borrow Your Lamborghini?” Read on at the Hollywood Reporter:
http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/kim-dotcom-megaupload-cougar-town-bruce-leddy-353780

So how much does Spotify actually pay? We still don’t know, but this week Prefix posted a chart of the four different payment tiers that Spotify is said to be paying out from .0012 per play for Mobile Streams to .0153 for Premium Streams. Isn’t a Mobile Stream a Premium Stream by default because only Premium Subscribers can stream on mobile devices? Hmmm…
http://www.prefixmag.com/news/spotify-premium-pays-artists-and-labels-three-time/67366/

“Ouch! Quit it!” Temple Law Prof Prof David Post responds David Lowery’s debunking of the “Jefferson Anti-Copyright Myth.” We’re still not sure what he’s saying, read on at his blog:
http://www.volokh.com/2012/07/24/my-mother-would-be-so-proud/

As we’ve mentioned before, we always find it amusing when any ONE group alleges to speak for the internet. In the latest of what appears to be another round of Tech Funded astro turf and sock puppet groups enter the “Internet Association.” Why are we not surprised that Google, Facebook, Amazon and Ebay lead the list of members whose mandate is to represent “the interests of Internet companies.” Oh, ok, I get it now… the internet is a business and those who speak “for the internet” are really speaking for “corporate interests.” Phew, I’m glad we’re clear about that now… read on at Digital Media Wire:
http://www.dmwmedia.com/news/2012/07/26/new-advocacy-group-speaks-on-behalf-of-the-internet

And in a related story, Jeremy Nicholl blogs about another group attempting to take ownership of the voice of the internet as the ‘Fat Cat’ Internet Defense League, read on:
http://www.jeremynicholl.com/blog/2012/07/23/the-fat-cat-internet-defense-league/
and, from Music Tech Policy:
http://musictechpolicy.wordpress.com/2012/07/26/fat-cat-signal-alert-behind-revolving-door-number-3-new-improved-astroturf-now-with-even-more-google-lobbyists/

DJ Shadow tests Bit Torrent advertising revenue sharing program. Sounds good on the surface, and we understand that Bit Torrent is just a protocol. We also support the Freedom Of Choice of any artists to explore new models that are appropriate to their needs and goals. We are however a little skeptical of this type of arrangement (affiliate payments) which historically have only benefited spammers and scammers to generate the amount of traffic and clicks necessary to be meaningful. Of course it also appears DJ Shadow may be skeptical as well as the release is unreleased catalog material (IE Demos & Outtakes) from 1992 – 1996. CIO reports:
http://www.cio.com/article/712133/Bittorrent_Looks_to_Share_Some_Revenue_with_Artists

Billy Corgan talks about how the dynamic of the internet has changed the development of new artists and muses that Nirvana would not have been able to develop to the level they had if they were a new band today. Digital Music News reports:
http://www.digitalmusicnews.com/permalink/2012/120725corgan#2ra_J1XgO9A96y5N8R5ybA

For most artists being against piracy and the illegal exploitation of their work does not mean they are against giving away free music as a promotional tool as many in the tech sphere would like to believe. Free is a powerful tool, especially for new and developing artists to build an audience, but at some point, the faucet of free needs to be turned off to convert that promotion to sustainable revenue for the artist. Ditto Music in the UK (an upstart competitor to TuneCore?) has been aggressively getting media coverage for it’s various editorials for artists. Digital Music News Reports:
http://www.digitalmusicnews.com/permalink/2012/120722free#KYQ4M__pEmmDhHsK74InDw

Speaking of free, the truth will out as they say. We were indeed curious when learning of a post this that reported on the hard lessons of attempting to charge for a product after giving it away for free. What interested us most is that it is counter to the previous tech (and music tech) blogosphere philosophy that Freemiums build the potential for a larger revenue base down the road. This now contradictory reporting is encouraging as we can see that even the most aggressive advocates for “free” have seen the failure of it as a business model. Score one for common sense (sorta), as it appears TechDirt still believes in “free” as a business model, despite the unlikely admission made in the post. Of course, we should also remember that people got free tv for generations but we’re eagerly willing to pay for it (cable) when better service without intrusive advertising was offered, read on:
http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120714/02445619700/two-cent-doughnuts-breed-decades-bad-blood-its-not-so-easy-going-free-to-paid.shtml

Dotcom, Swizz Beats, Megabox and the myth of liberating artists from middlemen… It’s always fascinating to us to see how the bad guys are creating new and inventive business models by paying the artists directly and cutting out middle men. The funny thing about this is, since CDBaby, TuneCore and other services there hasn’t been a need for middle men in over a decade if not longer. And yet, many artists make the choice to sign with labels. Probably because the labels offer financing and promotion the artists can not provide themselves. So in the same way that “MegaBox” was going to be a game changer for artists, it must be questioned why, when any artist today can of their own choice, have access to distribution without a record label. Thus these claims always ring false to us. Also, if Megabox was to pay out 90% to artists, than it should also be paying out 90% to labels as rights holders… hmmmm… read on at Torrent Freak:
http://torrentfreak.com/swizz-beatz-on-megaupload-i-was-giving-artists-90-of-the-shit-120726/

A free and open internet should not be an illegal and dangerous one. The very same methods used to defraud consumers by those selling fake drugs are also employed by content pirates. So serious is this problem that Google settled a half a billion dollar non-prosecution agreement last year. We’d love to see the content industries adopt this same type of campaign, See here: http://www.safemedsonline.org/

The Trichordist Random Reader News and Links Sun Apr 22

Grab the Coffee!

Here’s some interesting stories and links we discovered or were sent during the week. These may not be stories OF the week, as we share them as we find them.

German Court Rules Against YouTube in Copyright Case:
http://news.yahoo.com/german-court-rules-against-youtube-copyright-suit-115708414–sector.html

Supporting Copyright Is Not The Same as Opposing Free Speech:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/musicblog/2012/apr/19/copyright-freedom-speech

Rapidshare Writes Four Page Anti-Piracy Manifesto:
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/04/20/rapidshare_stop_piracy/

Interesting interview Between Ben Watt of Everything But The Girl and Journalist/Author Robert Levine:
http://www.buzzinfly.com/index-robert-levine-interviewed-by-ben-watt.html

Musician / Composer Mark Isham Launches ibuymymusic.org
http://ibuymymusic.org/I_Buy_My_Music_Dot_Org/Home.html

TechDirt Goes on the Defensive after Gearslutz thread asks, “Why does TechDirt hate musicians”:
http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120415/02354118491/difference-between-nuanced-discussion-evil-underbelly-internet-is-apparently-fine-line-indeed.shtml
http://www.gearslutz.com/board/music-business/719114-why-does-techdirt-hate-musicians.html

The Chicago Reader Picked up On David Lowery’s “New Boss, Worse Than Old Boss” as posted at TheTrichordist.
http://www.chicagoreader.com/Bleader/archives/2012/04/17/the-good-old-bad-old-days

Another shout out to TheTrichordist, this time from The Cynical Musician:
http://thecynicalmusician.com/2012/04/recommended-reading-the-trichordist/