Prince And Radiohead Fight Over YouTube Song

from the this-is-what-it's-come-to? dept

For years, Prince was the poster child for "getting" the internet and new media distribution opportunities. He experimented with a variety of different creative business models that suggested he got how the economics of music worked these days. It was working too -- with his efforts to give away his music helping him sell out concert after concert around the world. But then something changed, and Prince went ballistic, suing YouTube, The Pirate Bay and eBay and even threatening fan sites while demanding that even videos with tiny snippets of Prince music in the background get taken offline. The whole thing is quite surprising, and if he keeps this up, he's risking taking all that goodwill he built up for years, and turning himself into another Metallica. Becoming anti-fan is never a good idea.

The latest story, though, has a twist. Prince apparently did a cover of a Radiohead song at a recent concert. Someone filmed it and put the video on YouTube. Given his newfound hatred for YouTube, Prince demanded that the song be taken down. And here's where it gets interesting: Radiohead's Thom Yorke is demanding that it be put back online, noting that he owns the copyright on the song: "Really? He's blocked it?... Well, tell him to unblock it. It's our ... song." Of course, as that LA Times report notes, in true Streisand Effect fashion, the effort to take down the song has only driven much more interest in people trying to find the song. If Prince weren't suing so many people, you might even think he was canny enough to have done this on purpose as a marketing campaign.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    icon
    WarOtter (profile), May 30th, 2008 @ 5:13pm

    Bwuh?

    Did I miss a news post somewhere? Since when did people regard Prince as the one who "got" the internet? I always though he was an androgynous freak in a pruple skin tight jumpsuit... shows what I know :>

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Krubuntu, May 30th, 2008 @ 5:20pm

    Woot! I love Radiohead!

    Props to you, Radiohead.
    I donwnloaded In Rainbows for free and I liked it so much I went back and got it again paying $20.00.
    It's refreshing to see a band act sanely.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
    identicon
    whamzey, May 30th, 2008 @ 5:22pm

    i don't get it...

    Why are we paying attention to ANYONE in the "Sportsary Entertainial Complex"? I'm begining to think it's more entertaining to watch the fans watch the other idiots who think because they can sing/act/throw/catch they're worth a $100 ticket. Screw that!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
    identicon
    some old guy, May 30th, 2008 @ 5:40pm

    Re: i don't get it...

    I don't get what you just said. Perhaps I'm just not smart enough to comprehend your deep thoughts?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
    identicon
    Y in MB, May 30th, 2008 @ 6:27pm

    Prince's cover of Radiohead's "Creep" at Coachella

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
    identicon
    Chris, May 30th, 2008 @ 6:33pm

    True, Prince "got" the internet -- to make money

    But other than his promotion with the newspaper in London, I don't believe anything was actually free, or "freemium" even. He used the internet (and before that a 1-800 #, with occasional in-store partnerships) as a distribution channel to sell his albums as well as a way to get bonus material to the members of his devoted fan club (who spent lots of money on it all). So the idea of him continuing his fight to completely block anything on the internet he can't control commerce around is not surprising.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 30th, 2008 @ 6:49pm

    Can I put in my bullet Andy ?

    It's like Prince went on vacation and left an MBA in charge.

    I am reminded of the episode where Andy returns from Mt. Pilot and Barney has the entire town locked up in jail.
    "I got them dead to rights Andy" Barney proclaims
    And Andy proceeds to hear all the cases which end up being dismissed.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 30th, 2008 @ 6:59pm

    Prince is a desperate has been. That's why he's suing everyone.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
    identicon
    duh, May 30th, 2008 @ 8:18pm

    stunt

    prince knows what hes doing, its a publicity stunt, because he knows how well the baaaabra effect works /sarcasm

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    Funny Tshirts, May 30th, 2008 @ 8:29pm

    priceless

    hahah, get em radiohead

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    Sammy Deason, May 30th, 2008 @ 8:43pm

    Odds

    Hmmm, I put my money on Prince since he is like the best guitarist of all times.

    Sammy D
    http://www.fireme.to/udi

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    blah@here.com, May 30th, 2008 @ 9:15pm

    If I were

    If I were Thom (Radiohead) I would let them take down the video, he did that song (Radioheads worst IMHO) a dis-service

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    some old guy, May 30th, 2008 @ 10:28pm

    I know how they will fight

    I bet it will be a DANCE FIGHT!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
    identicon
    steveballmer, May 30th, 2008 @ 10:39pm

    NOT ANTI-FAN!

    Prince is not anti-fan he is anti-Low life trailer dwelling theiving b'stard!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  15.  
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    Cody, May 31st, 2008 @ 12:24am

    ok...

    the other link was low quality. here is a better quality version. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBGIQ7ZuuiU

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  16.  
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    illegalprelude, May 31st, 2008 @ 1:15am

    ....

    hahaha. Hell Yea Radiohead. Its nice to see Bands who really get it and are willing to stick it to morons

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  17.  
    identicon
    mike allen, May 31st, 2008 @ 3:30am

    yeah

    GO RADIOHEAD
    i wernt take struck on them until now il take another listen to their music because of this.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  18.  
    identicon
    mike allen, May 31st, 2008 @ 3:34am

    Re: ok...

    A RICK ASTLEY VIDEO???????????????????

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  19.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), May 31st, 2008 @ 5:24am

    Re: True, Prince "got" the internet -- to make money

    "I don't believe anything was actually free, or "freemium" even."

    That's not the only way to sell stuff online though. When people say he "got" the internet, it's because he was putting his music online (I believe some of it DRM-free), giving discounts to fan club members and other incentives several years ago. That was at a time when most of the industry was happy to not offer any downloads at all and sue people who tried to do so.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  20.  
    identicon
    ehrichweiss, May 31st, 2008 @ 6:18am

    Re: ok...

    Warning, it's just a RickRoll

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  21.  
    identicon
    www.custompcmax.com, May 31st, 2008 @ 7:00am

    Way to go radiohead! Stick it to that little purple freak.

    Really, though, this is a fairly humorous dispute, when you get down to it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  22.  
    identicon
    Whitey French, May 31st, 2008 @ 8:13am

    Is Purple In Rainbows?

    As previously stated - Radiohead IS the BEST, the proof just keeps piling up, how can anyone deny this now?

    Prince may be a great guitarist, but other than that he's just a little purple fairy with penis envy with a FLAIR for hooks. That he was the half-time entertainment for the Superbowl has forever tarnished the macho image of football (even worse than having Timberlake there!). He recorded a couple of good tunes back in the Eighties, but so did the Go-Gos.

    Just one cautionary note to Radiohead: Anyone seen the Dave Chappelle bit - Charlie Murphys' Real Hollywood Stories - where the Chappelle crew meets up with Prince's crew at a club, and gets challenged to a pick up game of b-ball to settle a dispute, finally getting smeared by the Purple One's underlings basketball accumen. (Then gets served Cherry Blintzes or something whipped up by Prince for breakfast) Thom - one bit of advice - leave this one in the law courts, not on the hardwood courts.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  23.  
    identicon
    Whitey French, May 31st, 2008 @ 8:23am

    Re: I know how they will fight

    You mean with Bruno & Carrie Ann? America just can't wait.
    I hope Len makes a cameo!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  24.  
    identicon
    wasn't me, May 31st, 2008 @ 8:45am

    at the risk of having missed dozens memos or so.

    Prince is back to being called Prince? isn't he supposed to be "the artist formerly know as Prince"?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  25.  
    identicon
    urza, May 31st, 2008 @ 11:15am

    Hell yea Radiohead

    As much as I hate Radiohead's music, I gotta say, I love their politics.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  26.  
    identicon
    Matt Clayton, May 31st, 2008 @ 11:43am

    I WAS THERE

    LOVE HIM OR NOT I WAS THERE AND SAW PRINCE AND HE DID A GREAT JOB ON CREEP SO LEAVE EM ALONE ......ESPECIALLLY CUZ HES CRAZY

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  27.  
    identicon
    matt warner, May 31st, 2008 @ 12:36pm

    werd

    totally SHWINGWORTHY! move on Thom's part

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  28.  
    identicon
    Chris, May 31st, 2008 @ 2:29pm

    Re: Re: True, Prince "got" the internet -- to make money

    you basically re-wrote what I wrote -- I was just saying that its not surprising that he would try to take down fansites, take down youtube videos of his performance, etc (things that fans could access without paying him anything) because it's consistent with his entire online policy since he started

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  29.  
    icon
    Mike (profile), May 31st, 2008 @ 3:23pm

    Re:

    at the risk of having missed dozens memos or so.

    Yup. You missed a few memos. :)

    Prince is back to being called Prince? isn't he supposed to be "the artist formerly know as Prince"?

    Yes, it happened a few years ago. The whole reason he changed his name was to get out from under the specifics of a bad record deal. Once that was over, he went back to being Prince.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  30.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 31st, 2008 @ 3:57pm

    The best thing is when people mashup different pieces of art.

    This muppet video is one of my favs.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3KANI2dpXLw

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  31.  
    identicon
    Blatant Coward, May 31st, 2008 @ 4:12pm

    The other site says the link to the vid is up, but it's back down again. Youtube is a fickle little b$#@h.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  32.  
    identicon
    amber, May 31st, 2008 @ 4:14pm

    Re: ok...

    that is the best redirect i've ever seen.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 31st, 2008 @ 9:19pm

    Re: muppet video

    *smack*
    *laughs*

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  34.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, May 31st, 2008 @ 11:32pm

    Again, Metallica first went after Napster when live bootlegs were found to be distributed there. Typical for people of their mentality they exaggerated their arguments to 'make the point' and win their fight.

    And as befitting ones of their mentality, they didn't forsee the backlash that would occur from attacking Napster for ALL music rather than just the bootlegs.

    But all well. Anyone who says they play bad music either A) doesn't like metal or B) desperately needed a 'cause' and jumped on the bandwagon.

    Interesting how they haven't done anything like that since the whole fiasco. If they were the money-grubbing pricks they're made out to be you'd think they would be more vocal considering their mentality.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 12:51am

    stupid purple Barney colored fucker

    would have been free publicity - now i'll never hear it or want to buy it. not that i would have anyway, in which case how does he lose? what a twat.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36.  
    identicon
    techie, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 4:06am

    ignorant

    It's almost shocking to read the ignorance in some of these posts.
    First, Prince is one of the true original legends of rock music. Early in his career he pushed the envelope and cast a shadow over everything from industrial and techno (many of the concepts on the 1999 album) to pop to R&B. Of course he was one of the pioneers of crossing white rock, pop and R&B. His talent can be absolutly dazzling- not only is he a great guitarist- he's a first rate drummer and keyboardist. Even in the age of sequencers he's one of the few people to have written, produced, arranged and played every note on his early albums.
    To appreciate Prince you need to be familiar with his entire body of work- from his albums to songs written for others to the live performances to the outtakes- and that is a daunting task.
    With regard to online Prince has always fought for artists rights. Whether you agree with him or not an artist has the right to protect their content. Even here where it's not his song he has a legal right to how his performances are distributed. I don't always agree but I don't understand getting mad if he chooses to remove content. I guess I believe when we download content we are lucky but if the owner takes it away- oh well. Move on. As long as fans aint getting sued for dl stuff like this.
    As far as the name calling- funny nobody rips bowie or jagger for being the same thing...I guess because they perform white rock...but I'll just quote Bono here. "People talk about Prince all the time like he's a f'in christmas tree. But he's got more talent in his little finger than all of them."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37.  
    identicon
    last train out, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 4:08am

    Suing Fans

    Prince suing his own web fans is nothing new

    www.uptown.se/2005/lawsuit.shtml

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    identicon
    Bart Smith, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 7:14am

    prince sucks

    prince sucks just like obama, they should be butt buddies, when are people going to figure out that a nigger is a nigger. I need to get a life instead of posting to ignorance like this!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
    identicon
    Brother Head, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 7:33am

    RE: Prince sucks.

    prince sucks by Bart Smith on Jun 1st, 2008 @ 7:14am

    prince sucks just like obama, they should be butt buddies, when are people going to figure out that a nigger is a nigger. I need to get a life instead of posting to ignorance like this!


    Or you just need to take your life... Aren't you late for a clan rally?

    Not that I'm a big fan of Prince's but anyone that posts ignorant trash like this is a waste of air.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40.  
    identicon
    Micha, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 10:32am

    Prince and fans

    Hi:
    I've been a Prince fan for a very long time... it was not the music but the implications he disliked. Put your music where you wish and that's what he wishes to do and not have things placed to someones elses taste. As a fan Prince has never failed me and it's time I tell others to get the facts and this all goes away... be fair enough to understand his artistic values and his desire to maintain them.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41.  
    identicon
    man, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 12:00pm

    Re: ok...

    thanks! and they haven't taken that version down yet either!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  42.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 1:11pm

    The times, they are a changin'

    Radio head rocks!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43.  
    identicon
    Sumbuddy stoopid, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 6:31pm

    He "Got" the internet

    I think they mean he's got it on Dial-Up...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  44.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 6:54pm

    Re: ignorant

    Nobody rips on Bowie, because you can't. Bowie almost made it a side career at one point to play into everything everyone said about him. Its pretty hard to make fun of someone who's going to take your joke, and then run with it. Not to mention he pretty much invented not one, but two genres of music 10-20 years before anyone else had even heard of them.

    Nobody rips on Jagger because he's overshadowed by the stupid things Keith says and does.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 1st, 2008 @ 10:02pm

    Re: ignorant

    I guess you can add claiming to own copyrights that he doesn't to his "entire body of work".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  46.  
    icon
    chris (profile), Jun 2nd, 2008 @ 7:59am

    Re: ignorant

    i totally agree. prince is too cool to be held to the same standard as everyone else.

    anti-fan fuckery is ok if your music is good and only bad musicians need to get with the times.

    metallica sucks so we can rip on them all day long, but LEAVE PRINCE ALONE!!1!

    now you've made my mascara run. i hope you are all happy.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  47.  
    identicon
    johnny, Jun 2nd, 2008 @ 11:00am

    this is "disney paranoia" or what I used to call it....

    when I worked on a pre-internet "search engine" interfaced to a database of newspaper and magazine articles and radio and television transcriptions.
    The biggest user was the Walt Disney Company who wanted to review anything that had a reference to the Walt Disney Company or any of its properties.
    I can just imagine all of the "cease and desist" letters that went out from their legal department.

    Just figure that anything that you do will wind up on the internet with or without your permission.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  48.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 4th, 2008 @ 10:50am

    Re: Prince and fans

    I'm a fan of RadioHead. I can't believe Prince stole their song. He's profitting from the work of others.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  49.  
    identicon
    eviilgrin, Jun 8th, 2008 @ 11:52pm

    yea radiohead!!!!!fuck him in the ass good!!!maybe he won't b so uptight after that!!!.douchebag!!!radiohead should sue him so he can get a taste of his own medicine

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  50.  
    identicon
    maik, Mar 21st, 2009 @ 8:25am

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    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  51.  
    identicon
    keith, May 6th, 2009 @ 7:27am

    Google make child p*rn: http://mafiawww.com

     

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