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ARSCLIST  June 2007

ARSCLIST June 2007

Subject:

Re: Fw: WAMU 88.5 to Join Webcasters in "Day of Silence" June 26

From:

"Steven C. Barr(x)" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 21 Jun 2007 22:12:17 -0400

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (131 lines)

see end...
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Dismuke" <[log in to unmask]>
> --- "Steven C. Barr(x)" <[log in to unmask]>
> wrote:
> > To RIAA, each listener to an Internet-radio blues
> > program is a
> > potential customer who, had not the net program been
> > available,
> > would have purchased a vast number of current hip
> > hop hit CD's!
> 
> This is very close to the mark.
> 
> The ONLY relevance the RIAA labels have left in
> today's digital, Internet dominated world is their
> ability to promote their recordings and artists via FM
> air play.  Thanks to today's technology, artists no
> longer need a major record label in order produce and
> distribute recordings - there are plenty of ever
> increasingly affordable alternatives open to them. 
> But to the degree that top selling recordings continue
> to be promoted by means of FM airplay, artists need
> the very one sided contract with a major label if they
> strive to become famous as opposed to merely making a
> living with their music.
> 
> Internet radio threatens all this as it is very much
> on the verge of replacing FM as the venue in which
> people discover new music.   And, unlike FM, Internet
> radio has no limitations on how many stations can
> exist and is global in terms of its audience reach. 
> Unlike FM, the RIAA labels have no special advantage
> over Independents when it comes to getting airplay on
> the Internet.  Even in their glory days, the major
> labels did not have pockets so deep as to be a able to
> spread payola and marketing clout around to countless
> thousands of Internet stations with relatively small
> audiences.
> 
> When venues such as Internet radio and myspace become
> viable alternatives for those musicians who strive to
> become famous - well, it will no longer be necessary
> for them to sign one-sided contracts with major record
> labels.  It will make more sense for them to remain
> independent and thereby retain ownership and control
> over their music - and to keep any profits generated
> from it for themselves.
> 
> THAT is why the RIAA and its puppets at SoundExchange
> are so desperately trying to kill off Internet radio. 
> It is not so much that the RIAA is concerned that
> current Internet radio blues listeners might not be
> buying hip-hop.  They know that's not likely to
> happen.  What they are concerned with is the prospect
> of hip-hop listeners and all of the sheep out there
> who have little, if any, awareness of music outside of
> what is spoon-fed to them over FM might suddenly
> discover that genres such as blues, ragtime, jazz,
> dance bands exist and are pretty fun to listen to. 
> Even more so, they are terrified that such listeners
> might discover and embrace all of the many talented
> independent artists out there in the major popular
> genres.
> 
> I have no problem with Internet radio stations paying
> royalties.  That's not what this is about.  A rational
> system of royalties is NOT one which will, from the
> very get-go, bankrupt the entities which are supposed
> to be paying the royalties.  The purpose of the new
> royalty scheme as well as the scheme that the RIAA
> backed last time around is to DESTROY Internet radio
> and NOT to generate a viable stream of revenue from it
> for copyright owners.  Keep in mind that independent
> artists are just as much legitimate copyright owners
> as are the major RIAA labels - and this royalty scheme
> will destroy the only viable means of air play that
> such artists and copyright owners have open to them.  
> 
> Internet radio is one of the most exciting
> developments during my lifetime.  Obscure and
> forgotten genres finally have an opportunity to make
> themselves available to anyone who cares to discover
> them and to earn the sort of appreciative, modern
> audiences they deserve.  Before the Internet, if a
> person wished to listen to, let's say popular music
> from the early 1900s he either needed to acquire his
> own vintage music collection (something which very few
> people who are unfamiliar with the genre are likely to
> do) or be fortunate enough to live in one of a VERY
> small handful of markets where a station MIGHT have
> had a few hour per week program that MIGHT play such
> music.   Now all one has to do is tune into Radio
> Dismuke which plays jazz and pop from the 1920s and
> 1930s.  Or one can tune into Wiemar Rundfunk and
> listen to the same sort of music from places such as
> Poland, Germany, France, Holland and other countries
> in Europe.  Or one can listen to Elite Syncopations
> which specializes in ragtime.
> 
> The RIAA seeks to destroy all that.  Don't let those
> bastards get away with it.  They are nothing more than
> the modern day equivalent of the buggy whip
> manufacturer - and I am looking forward to them
> eventually meeting the exact same fate.
> 
> Radio Dismuke, by the way, will also be joining the
> many thousands of other Internet radio station in the
> upcoming Day of Silence. 
> 
First...my comment about blues lovers buying hip hop CD's was
intended as a bit of humour only...since I belong to several
blues-oriented e-mail lists, I can report that 99.9% of blues
fans regard "rap," "hip hop" et al as obscene terms! Even when
I note in passing the connection between blues (the Black music
of of several decades past) and rap/hip-hop (the Black music
of this century, so far) I usually get "flamed" big time!

Second...so far, the punitive royalty demans/rules only apply to
net-radio stations based in the US of A! Obviously, those which
stream content (or are otherwise connected to) from a US FM station
can't really disguise their country of origin...but I wonder if a
station like yours could make arrangements to "broadcast" from up
here "north of the border"...? So far, there hasn't been a great
rush (although I'm sure pressure is being brought to bear, since
the Canadian recording industry has effectively been a "branch
plant" for its much larger and more prominent US counterpart...)
to follow the lead of US rules and regulations (YET...!)

Steven C. Barr

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