Constantine Roussos (.music)’s Techdirt Profile

music

About Constantine Roussos (.music)

Constantine Roussos is a Greek-Cypriot serial entrepreneur, musician, songwriter, producer, engineer and Internet technology geek. Constantine was born and raised in Cyprus and runs Roussos Group of Companies ( Cyprus ) headquartered in Limassol. Roussos Group activities include music entertainment, eBusiness, night clubs, hotels, manufacturing, international trade, land development, commercial real estate, luxury villas, construction, virtual real estate development and domain name acquisitions.

Constantine has been actively involved on the Internet as well as the virtual real estate domain name space. His portfolio of thousands of eProperty acquisitions include domains such as Music.us, Music.fm, MP3.fm, Music.im, Music.pro, MusicMusic.com, Lyrics.fm, eMusic.us, iMusic.us, Mastering.us, Production.us, HipHopMusic.us, PopMusic.us, PopStar.us, Music-CD.com, MusicCollaboration.com, MusicB2B.com, MusicFinancing.com, MusicIndustry.us, MusicLicense.net, MusicP2P.net, Spoirt.com, Songify.com, Sports.im, Media.im, Movies.fm, Movie.fm, Agency.pro, Downloads.pro, Fashion.pro, Merchandise.pro, Promotion.pro, Payment.pro, Association.pro, Artist.me, Band.me, Buzz.me, AdsShare.com, ArtistManager.com, Donate.us, Spacemy.com, eSocialNetwork.com. Constantine also acquired the highly-publicized mobile Internet domains Music.mobi and Entertainment.mobi. The Music.mobi domain $616,000 bid was the highest price ever recorded in an auction for a .mobi domain.

He also co-founded 123Refills, the maker of Uni-Kit, the universal inkjet and laser toner refill kits for printer cartridges. 123Refills now has a global presence in the United States, Greece, Cyprus, South Africa, Philippines, Malta, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. Other ventures include SEO.tv, an Internet marketing and search engine optimization company, as well as Fight Piracy.org. The Fight Piracy Organization supports fair compensation for rights holders as well as innovative business models and solutions that embrace new technologies to combat piracy. His most recent entrepreneurial effort is .music, the domain name extension for the music community, powered by the Music.us 360-Degree platform.

Constantine earned a bachelor degree in Business and a minor in music industry at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. He continued his education at Musician’s Institute in Hollywood becoming a certified music sound engineer. He continued his education at Pepperdine University in Malibu where he earned his MBA. His last educational journey was Harvard Business School at the distinguished Executive Owner President Management program.

Constantine has produced, engineered and mixed albums by artists including A Family of Snail, Katie Quinlan, Some Change from Us, Pigeon’s Rhythm and David Silverman. He also is a singer-songwriter and composer, releasing songs such as “.music,” the theme song for the domain name extension to be introduced on the web for the music community.

The vision of the .music generic top-level-domain began in 2001 after Constantine Roussos was awarded Top Business Plan at the USC Business School Lloyd Greif Entrepreneur Program for his web music community business plan. In 2002, after recording and producing albums with 5 different artists, he founded Music.us, a music community website.

Since 2004, Music.us has been an active affiliate partner for brands such as Apple iTunes, Ticketmaster, Amazon.com, Napster, Real Rhapsody, Yahoo!, Guitar Center, Microsoft/MSN, Musician's Friend, Netflix, Audible.com, Jamster, Adobe, Blockbuster, Comcast, StubHub, Walmart, eMusic.com, Best Buy, CafePress, Live365, VistaPrint, Sony/Columbia House, BMG Music, Godaddy.com, Music123, eBay, Skype and others. The slogan of the company "We Are Music" summed up the initiative to represent the global music community: .music
.music is the web domain name extension representing the global music community, giving music entities a unique identity online. By fostering innovation and being at the cutting edge of technology, Music.us spent 5-years developing one of the most powerful frontends to cater the music community. It integrates a full spectrum of tools and revenue generation-applications geared to support the monetization of the community's products and services. These include downloads, ticketing, merchandising, product bundling, live broadcasting, licensing, revenue-sharing in advertising, receiving sponsorships/donations as well as facilitating the booking of musicians, session players, live performance bands and other service providers such as music producers, engineers, managers, agents, consultants, attorneys, mastering houses, promoters, publishers, educators, journalists, writers, podcasters, designers, developers, broadcasters and researchers.

Constantine’s .music initiative petition for the .music domain name extension has received over 1,300,000 signatures from the at-large music and web community as well as amassed over over 3,000,000 friends on Myspace and 500,000 followers across Twitter, syndicating daily news across 21 specialized channels. His outreach efforts to launch the initiative include the formation of the .music rotating board, representing different interest groups within the global music community. Constantine has appeared on numerous music panels in conferences and public speaking engagements at universities such as Harvard Business School (HBS), the University of Southern California (USC), the University of California in Los Angeles (UCLA), Pepperdine University and others as well as won awards in Music Innovation for the .music ecosystem and 23-point initiative. He has also been an active lobbyist for .music at the ICANN governing body of the Internet meetings including Cairo (Egypt), Mexico City (Mexico), Sydney (Australia), Seoul (South Korea), Nairobi (Kenya).

For more info on .music visit: http://www.music.us

Social Sites:
http://www.myspace.com/musicextension
http://www.twitter.com/musicextension
http://www.facebook.com/musicextension

Blog:
http://www.musicmusic.com
http://www.fightpiracy.org

http://www.linkedin.com/constantineroussos



Constantine Roussos (.music)’s Comments comment rss

  • Jan 22nd, 2011 @ 3:02am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Response by .music domain initiative: Roussos

    Thanks for the comment Karl.

    I have great admiration with what Google and Apple's Steve Jobs have done. Without a doubt they have added significant value for consumers. I use Google and their services and the same applies with Apple. Great products, great leadership and great execution. The value creation for consumers has been huge. From YouTube to search to the iPod and the iPhone and to the Apps, what they accomplished is second to none.

    As a musician myself, I understand that there is always a trade off to everything. However, I am not one of those that believes that free is always the solution to selling more. It all depends on which stage of the development cycle you are. Radiohead and Trent have shown great insights on how the web can be leveraged with the concept of free. However, those are big-time names and it is harder to translate those kind of benefits to smaller bands.

    Apple has recorded record profits because they are a great company that has served the marked with their strategy with unparalleled execution. Google as well is the market leader in search by a wide margin. It is not even close. Same applies to youtube in the video market, even though Vevo has made very optimistic strides.

    My perspective is that more could be done in regards to distributing more equitable/fair funds of those profits to artists. Music is used as a loss leader to sell a lot of electronics and advertising. Music has been used as a loss leader on Youtube to sell ads. It is now that we might have some more beneficial treatment towards artists in regards to fair compensation. I think artists are part of the value generation of these companies and they have not benefited as much as they could.

    Same applies to terrestrial radio in the US. I believe performers should be paid their fair share by the radio stations. Pandora and digital stations pay for it, why shouldn't terrestrial radio. The record industry has changed and so have the dynamics of marketing.

    The system is broken and I believe it is our responsibility to ensure that artists can be represented in the best way possible to earn a living and be fairly compensated. I believe the RIAA and others have received a lot of criticism but I do believe they play an important role in lobbying for the music industry. The music community plays a vital role and I believe those voices must be heard too.

    I believe asking the tough questions and answering them with a win-win scenario is the ultimate goal. How do we reach that objective is the difficult journey. We require more trust, collaboration and creating win-win situations.

    I hope we can look at all the issues and iron them out so they can best reflect the interests of the music community at-large. You and others have a voice and as a member of the music community, I believe we all need to be a bit more pro-active in regards to musicians' rights and fair compensation. Increasing competition and innovation is a must. It has to be done for the benefit of both commercial and non-commercial music constituents.

    Thank you for your comments again.

    Constantine Roussos
    .music TLD
    http://music.us

  • Jan 21st, 2011 @ 6:07am

    Re: Re: Re: Response by .music domain initiative: Roussos

    Karl,

    Thank you for your insights and comments. Perhaps Google or Apple is the savior of the music industry but unfortunately it seems that over the last decade, this has not happened while billions have been earned piggybacking the music community. I also added 19 other reasons how .music can be beneficial.

    You will also be pleased to know that you are critical to the success of .music since you are a musician and hence a member of the .music community. We will not allow the exclusion of legitimate small bands or music bloggers. The policies for small bands and music bloggers will be incorporated. We also have been developing policies surrounding .music fan websites as well. We will not being excluding members of the at-large music community and a process will be in place to validate themselves and register a .music domain. The CMOs will be diverse, so rest assured, you will be represented as well.

    The .music community will be highly inclusive for music constituents. It is so inclusive for the music community that we are also working towards International Domain Names for .music to facilitate the music community from regions with languages in Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Hindi etc.

    In other words, we will be vying for the internalization of the music space on the Internet. The .music initiative will cater to the needs of a culturally-diverse global music community. Besides English/Latin, .MUSIC will also be translated and launched in 8 other languages, including French (.musique), Germanic (.musik), Hindi, Russian (.музыка), Japanese (音楽), Korean (음악), Arabic and Chinese (.音乐).

    Check http://music.us/innovation.htm for more info. Our goal is truly innovate the space and keep it exclusive to the music community and not cybersquatters or pirates.

    We are committed to our original mission of adding value to the music community, bring new innovation, facilitate collaboration as well as make the TLD truly internationalized. Win-win is the objective and unity in vision and execution. For that all constituents will benefit by participating and engage positively for the greater good of the industry. In actuality, the exclusion of members of the music community is exactly what we are striving against.

    The goal of .MUSIC is not just launching a vanity TLD but creating an ecosystem that is secure, collaborative and works for the benefit of the at-large music community. We believe music can be as strong as a country-code TLD and strike a chord for musicians and the music community. Like .DK associates the Danish and is the TLD of choice in Denmark, the .MUSIC will be the association for a TLD of choice for the music community.

    The benefit of the .MUSIC we are championing is that it will serve as a trusted badge with policies that outlaw piracy and cybersquatting. Consumers will be able to trust a .MUSIC domains as opposed to a .COM which lacks the policies to prevent piracy.

    For the past few years or so I have also been quite vocal about ICANN allowing Vertical Integration of Registries/Registrars so that a new TLD can innovate and compete against the .COM monopoly. I lobbied ICANN for this quite extensively and since it was consistent with the Affirmation of Commitments to increase competition and bring innovation in the domain space, the ICANN Board voted to allow this. You might be right if you are playing by the old rules of domaining.

    We will be offering an extensive set of data to the music community that can be collected at the macro level. This can help predict trends, improve decision making as well as for statistical purposes. Sort of like a Big Champagne but using the DNS. The other is our patent-pending DNS platform that we built to power the .MUSIC premium domains that will be .MUSIC registrant-generated. This will help .MUSIC registrants with marketing, gaining search traffic, for discovery as well as social connectedness and collaboration.

    As mentioned earlier, we will differentiate from .COM by enabling Internationalized participation by launching International Domain Names for .music to facilitate the music community from regions with languages in Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Hindi etc. In other words, we will be vying for the internalization of the music space on the Internet. The .music initiative will cater to the needs of a culturally-diverse global music community. Besides English/Latin, .MUSIC will also be translated and launched in 8 other languages, including French (.musique), Germanic (.musik), Hindi, Russian (.музыка), Japanese (音楽), Korean (음악), Arabic and Chinese (.音乐).

    We have built a host of tools and technology to facilitate this to ensure that a .MUSIC will be a stronger value proposition than a .COM for the music community. Not only that, it will serve as a tool for expanding the pie for the music industry and not a nuisance. We stick to our commitment to build this and employ this for the music community and serve their interests.

    Thank you for your comments. They are very important. Rest assured you and other musicians that are not represented by major label or PRO interests will be able to register a .music. Rest assured there will be a process and we strive for equality, transparency and creating value for all music community members.

    If you have any concerns or feedback, feel free to email me. My email is on the Music.us contact page. Thank you for taking the time to reading about what we are doing. The majority of the support we received in our 1.5 million signatures are from people such as yourself. I have a commitment to serve the community and will do so. Equal representation and multi-stakeholder governance is in our mission statement.


    Constantine Roussos

    .music Domain Initiative

    http://music.us

  • Jan 20th, 2011 @ 2:17am

    Response by .music domain initiative: Roussos

    Thanks MIke for the article about .music and all the concerns that we have in regards to safely and responsibly launching the .music top-level domain extension for the music community.

    Our policies in regards to .music domains will be focused on outlawing copyright infringement. Our policies will go beyond what ICANN requires and the standard norm for domain name registrations thus far.

    The .music domain extension will be a community-based initiative with stringent policies in regards to registration rules. Only members of approved .music Community Member Organizations (CMOs) will be able to register a .music address. CMOs will include .music-accredited Trade Organizations, Government Agencies/Export Offices, Music Educational Institutions, Digital Aggregators and Music Communities. It will not be open to the general public like a .COM.

    We invite these types of organizations to become .music Community Member Organizations, who will serve as gatekeepers to protect .music from malicious conduct. These CMOs will be assigned a validating ID that will be given to their members to use in order to register a .music domain.

    You can email us at community (at) music.us if you are an organization interested in becoming a .music accredited CMO. We will be at Midem, New Music Seminar, Digital Music Forum East and SXSW as well. Contact us via our website http://music.us/contact.htm if you have questions or interest.

    Best,

    Constantine Roussos
    .music Domain Initiative
    http://music.us

  • Mar 25th, 2010 @ 12:40pm

    ICANN Agrees to Meet with IOC about .sport

    Hey Mike,

    Your readers would be interested in reading this. This is ICANN's response. They are planning on meeting with the IOC:

    http://icann.org/correspondence/beckstrom-to-lacotte-23mar10-en.pdf

    The IOC claims to hold the rights for .sport and that no-one else should be able to get a sport-related TLD. I think they are going overboard and I am sure ICANN will put them in their place. This kind of monopolistic behavior is unacceptable.

    My .music initiative is quite different because it is a community initiative with multiple-stakeholder governance. Personally I think this is an attempt by the IOC to state its dominance for .sport. Why not get .olympics? Very interesting move that will backfire in my opinion,

    Constantine Roussos
    .music

  • Mar 20th, 2010 @ 3:43pm

    Re: Extortion

    There is no extortion by ICANN. I am not sure where everyone is getting their information about the ICANN process but most bloggers and people have their information wrong.

    Firstly, there are 4 categories of TLDs: Geographic, community, open and brands. There are stringent trademark mechanisms in place for the new TLDs, tougher than the ones existing now. For example, Rapid Suspension and an IP ClearingHouse.

    Also, there is a misconception that TLDs are like commodity items that you buy. The application is $185,000 but by no stretch of the imagination does that mean ICANN approves it without fulfilling all requirements including technical, technology and legal. So do you think it is free to create a registry such as Verisign (.com, .net) and Afilias (.org, .info)? That is additional.

    I am launching .music and you are getting it from the source. ICANN is not extorting anyone.

    Constantine Roussos
    .music

  • Mar 19th, 2010 @ 4:30pm

    Re: The biggest beneficiaries

    Hey Dave,

    I am launching .music by the way and it has been in the works for 5 years now. The ICANN lobbying has been quite an undertaking. Not sure where you came up with $500,000 but that just covers the ICANN application and to registry set-up. Unless you are vying to run a small registry such as .aero and .museum that exists, your costs will be in the millions of dollars.

    I suggest you look at the ICANN guidebook. There is a $185,000 application fee for ICANN just to consider you. However it does not mean you get a TLD. I think there is a misconception about the process by many. You are factually incorrect about Godaddy too. ICANN has rejected the possibility of vertical integration of Registry-Registrar, so the separation will still exist of Registries (Verisign, Afilias, Neustar) and Registrars (Godaddy, Network Solutions, Enom). In other words Registrars can not get their own TLD and operate them.

    Constantine Roussos
    .music