Independent Band Creates

from the silly-band dept

In a great publicity move for itself, Bay Area band Tabloid, created an anti-Napster website called They encourage people to sabotage Napster by putting up MP3 tracks with misleading titles. So, instead of downloading a popular music track you may, instead, download a speech from someone about the evils of Napster. The site is pretty funny. They say that “no one” has the right to set the price of music, not even rock stars (unless, apparently, they’re anti-Napster). Okay… um… then how does the price get set? The market is a wonderful thing, and in this case the market has clearly set the price at zero for MP3s… In reality, what the band is saying is that people should be punished for paying market price, when really they deserve to pay a premium. Thus, they’re saying that, as a band, they don’t know how to make themselves any money, and thus need to unfairly force it out of consumers.

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Comments on “Independent Band Creates”

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mhh5 says:

Napster<->gnutella<->LOCKSS??? will do only that, stop napster. And only briefly. I don’t see how napster won’t be able to weed out the trojan horses. It should be even more difficult for trojan horses to exist on decentralized servers, no? Look at LOCKSS:
people are already figuring out how to distribute copies of digital stuff, keep them securely, and do it for free… Copyrights will give way to services, I predict. (Or at least, I hope….)

Todd (profile) says:

Re: Napster economics

Mike, with the creation of MP3 compression, the cost of music became the cost of bandwidth (and/or patience) plus search costs (finding the MP3 you wanted was hard with ratio sites, FTP stuff that I was incapable of learning, etc.).

Napster took search costs down substantially. StopNapster absolutely raises them again. But creativity always rises to lower search costs time and time again. Look for certified Napster tracks or certification filters in the near future.

The cost of music will still be associated with the cost of bandwidth. Bandwidth isn’t free, unless your telco doesn’t charge you for the line. Patience isn’t free, either… There will always be some costs associated with gathering music online.

Price is another matter — who said that price is even remotely related to cost? COGS on a music CD (with packaging) was reported to be 55 cents in 1995 (CNBC report). With distribution costs and inventory holding costs, the cost was estimated to be only $1.35. Yet, as we know, prices were 10x that.

Monopoly pricing? Absolutely. Collusion? Sure. But now, what price given that the monopoly on distribution is effectively gone, the costs are exposed, and collusion has been litigated away? The price could be below costs if the labels realize the value of music in bringing customers to a site.

I do find it funny that the artists are complaining — they make the thinnest of slices of the margin on any incremental CD sold. They used to argue about their slice of the pie, which would be a logical tact to continue given that fewer pies are being sold. That way they too force the record industry to change the economics of distribution toward they who generate the value of music. Those who complain about fewer pies are arguing over a battle that has been lost.

Other Ryan says:

It will depend on the fans

I doubt this will “stop Napster” because it will totally depend on the fans maliciously spreading fake files to other fans. How many people feel strongly enough about it to run a Napster server with fake files? And if someone downloads one of these trojans and listens to it (possibly before the download finishes) they will know they’ve been fooled and they’ll be angry. They might get Napster to ban the user, or they might try some sort of DOS attack on their own. Either way, I think this will fizzle. Not to mention that they stole this idea almost word for word from

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