Recording Industry Now Angry About Discounted Downloads

from the someone-buy-them-an-economics-textbook dept

There’s just no way to please the recording industry, is there? Yesterday, we wrote about how the recording industry was trying to raise prices on digital downloads by forcing people to buy a bad song with each good song they wanted. It appears they’re going even further. Despite the fact that basic capitalism suggests a retailer should be able to sell products at whatever price they want, assuming they’ve paid for them properly, the Australian recording industry is furious that broadband provider Telstra is daring to offer discounted downloads – selling them beneath cost to try to attract new broadband users. However the industry, which has apparently never heard of promotional material or the concept of a “loss-leader,” seems to think there’s something sinister going on here. The head of the Australian recording industry says everyone should be skeptical that Telstra is just trying to get people interested in buying downloadable music, because clearly they’re trying to sell (gasp!!) more broadband connections!!! No!!! Anything but that! Wait a second… isn’t that their business? Of course they’re trying to sell more broadband connections, and using cheaper music to do so. Next thing you know, Coke and Pepsi are going to start protesting pizza places that give away a free drink with two slices of pizza.

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Comments on “Recording Industry Now Angry About Discounted Downloads”

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DV Henkel-Wallace says:

It gets worse

There’s sadly more to the story than this. There’s a reason why Australia has those anti-discounting rules in the first place.

Under the Clinton administration, Carla Hills was quite zealous in enforcing “Super 301” sanctions against other companies. In one particularly horrible case she went after Australia (on behalf of Sony, mind you) for passing a law explicitly permitting discounting of CDs. She argued that this was unfair — the the country should force the stores to adhere to the minimum pricing policies of the CD sellers.

What makes this horrible was not that she was doing this on behalf of a Japanese company. No, the egregious unfairness such agreements are illegal restraint of trade in the USA! She was forcing a small country to adopt laws that would be illegal here! And a small country like Australia is unable to tell the US “up yours” — they depend too heavily on being able to export to the states.

So you see this kind of bullying went on before the Bush junta took power. Some things never change.

auMoose CowherdRoadkilld (user link) says:

aria angry with tel$tra

tel$tra is the incumbent telco & provides the worst service & highest prices. they treat their customers with disdain, & competing telcos endless lawsuits. as an aside, the fed govt still holds 51% ownership, not that this helps consumers. tel$tra spends millions on advertising so loss leading music is not a surprise.
aria & its mp3 goon police are used to picking on 19 yr old students with no money. tel$tra is cashed up, has plenty of lawyers & well practised in using them against pissants like aria. just to give this an extra bitterness, aria recently raided several isp/telco’s including tel$tra, looking for evidence of mp3 pirates (using kazaa).
aria can issue press releases all it likes, but tel$tra will basically do what it likes….

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