It's always amusing when the recording industry (and its supporters) focus on how helping that particular industry is the equivalent of "helping the artists." Historically, the two sides have often been at odds -- with it being fairly common for many musicians to claim that their record label cheated them out of money owed. The latest is that the Allman Brothers Band and Cheap Trick claim that their label, Sony Music, isn't paying them what they're owed in royalties for songs bought on iTunes. They're getting 4.5 cents, rather than the 30 cents they believe they're owed. In this case, it's clearly a contractual argument -- with it being unclear what category in the contract an iTunes download falls under. The folks at the label claim it's in the classification that gets the smallest amount, while the bands claim it's in the one that gets the largest. Nothing is that surprising about this type of dispute. However, what could make it interesting is if the bands prevail (which is probably unlikely). Plenty of other musicians would quickly line up for their missing royalties as well -- and it could take a bit of a dent out of the recording industry's digital profits while increasing their ignored demands for higher download prices. Either way, it's yet more evidence that the recording industry's and the musicians' interests are quite often not aligned.
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