RIAA Tries To Stop Trent Reznor's Promotional Campaign For New Concept Album

from the whoops dept

In the comments to an earlier post today, a reader pointed us to an article about Trent Reznor’s promotional campaign for his latest Nine Inch Nails album. It sounds like he’s taken a page from the various alternate reality games that have been popular in promoting movies and video games over the past few years. That is, there appears to be a series of secretive websites that are being leaked out with various clues and there’s a big group of fans all trying to track down the details. Also, at some Nine Inch Nails concerts, people have found USB keys in the bathroom with songs from the upcoming album. Not surprisingly, those songs quickly found their way online, all with Reznor’s approval. Of course, no one seems to have told the RIAA about this marketing campaign. The RIAA went and demanded that various sites pull down the songs, even though Reznor wanted the songs to spread for promotional purposes. The RIAA always says that if artists want to promote their own songs by giving them away for free they have no problem with it — but it seems that their mindset is so focused on the idea that no one would ever want to do this that they still have to issue takedowns when artists want the songs given away.

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Comments on “RIAA Tries To Stop Trent Reznor's Promotional Campaign For New Concept Album”

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GoblinJuice says:


Jesus…. This guy is still around? I thought he faded away with the rest of soundalikes from the 90s.

Um…. Yeah…. I don’t think he’s smart enough to think this far ahead. I sincerely doubt he inteded to “use” the RIAA.

However, since they are acting like total asses… he can exploit this. If he’s smart, I mean.

I actually don’t dislike the guy, just shocked he’s still around. I never really saw what the big deal re:NIN was.

Quake says:

Re: just stick to the subject

Criticizing musical tastes is pointless since it is totally subjective. Doing so belittles the rest of what you have to say (if anything). You think that music I like sucks @$$, I don’t care. And I am sure the feeling is mutual. See, pointless.

“Hey, look at me everyone. I think NiN sucks. I think Trent Reznor is dumb. Aren’t I cool?” No, your not. Exactly the opposite. Just go back to listening to your Britney then, or whatever it is you like. No, we don’t care what that is.

sendeth says:


wtf do you mean still around??? what rock have you been living under??? trent is one of the few big artists left that doesnt feel above playing a small club or bar. trent is cool as hell. he puts on surprise free shows at bars and small clubs almost evey time he passes through boston. you’ll just be out at some bar on 495 and suddenly here comes trent with his stuff. even managers dont know that he’s coming.

nin rocks….

glitch says:

how about a suit by whats his name

ahh…reznor…if he is not affil with diaRIAA, they have no right to demand anything be taken down…prob is a stretch, but maybe the RICO act ?? against shouldnt there be some kind of legal stuff against what RIAA is doing ?? i think RIAA has been allowed to issue “blanket” claims long enough…so, if i rlease 1 song that falls under RIAA control, they can forever demand take-down of anything with my name, just in case ???

josh says:

As a musician myself, i have always felt that it would be in my best interest to freely share my music with as many people as i could. Even if at some point in the future, i came to desire monetary rewards for my compositions, in the beginning at least, it seems that a widespread free sharing of my music would be a good idea to gain exposure. Thus creating a bigger base of consuming fans.

For art’s sake of course, it should be an artists hope that his or her music reaches as many people as possible, as easily as possible. Free is easier.

Either way, whether you want to make money from your music or not, freely sharing it in the beginning (or when promoting a new album in this case) is a good idea. Of course, the choice to share YOUR OWN music is completely YOUR OWN choice.

This is the last step the RIAA will take before it violently tumbles down the haphazardly assembled staircase it has built in an effort to steal art away from the world…

Teknosapien says:

Re: Share and becomeyour art


I would defiantly would like to know where I can find your music!!!!
You seem to be an artist for arts sake unlike most of the music world. Being a deadhead, lover of the arts, full time geek and official old dude/hippie I would also like to point you to archive.org where you can place your “art” up for free and get the exposure that a true artist deserves.

Screw the RIAA I never support any of their ” Clients”

GoblinJuice says:

Re: Message to "GoblinJuice":

Yeah, sorry, I didn’t notice NIN being on the Billboard charts…. Britney Spears was on them too, right? Nice company Trent keeps.

The days of the “star” are over, friends. There are a million artists, singing in a hundred tongues.

I thought I was being diplomatic with my original post, but – regretfully – some were hurt.

If it makes y’all feel any better, I’m sure 95% of you would think the music I listen to sucks. 😛

Phigmeta says:

Re: Re: Message to "GoblinJuice":

Oh No’s …

we have an uber hipster… Oh gee wiz what will we do.

Let me guess … all of your music is that super cool cutting edge stuff that is from some local band that doesn’t CARE about some label (until they have one)

Dude your tripe is older than grunge … and grunge is dead

OK ok … sorry … i mean .. your special

Just like everybody else

Anonymous Coward says:

he is apart of the RIAA, he produces through nothing records and that is apart of the RIAA, ive looked into it. i am not normally a music fan but his music has a message (and people who dont like him, i dont care, i do so shut up) i think it is great he is playing the RIAA, i hope he helps there downfall so i can buy his records again

now about NIN, for somone to say he is alike for any type of artist is so wrong you need to llisten to his music, EVERY album, esspically his latest ones are differnt in style, he accutuly tries to be creative and doesnt sell his music out to the stupid masses,

WarOtter says:

Re: Re:

Yeah saying NIN is a rip off of anything is like saying the Beatles are a rip off of Elvis. Sure there are similarities, but stuff from before NIN *influenced* his music. I’ve always been a huge fan of NIN (have an 8 inch NIN tattoo on my back, got engaged at a NIN show) and while I’ll gladly argue anyone’s claims about Trent’s originality, this is not the forum to do so.

malhombre says:

Anon (#17)

Thanks for setting the record straight as to Reznor’s affiliation with the RIAA, in contradiction to monostatic (#6).

I think there are people out there who are under the mistaken impression that the RIAA has been given the legal power to force completely non-affiliated artists and media outlets to follow their orders – while I am certain they would like to, and sure that they are trying to obtain that kind of control, it is not yet the case.

If you are an artist who releases only through non-RIAA affiliated labels, and who has no contract with the RIAA, they can not make you do a damn thing (unless perhaps you are violating some IP that they control), otherwise, RIAA can only affect those who have signed on with Satan.

billy says:


NIN is in no way through himself or his record company affiliated with diaRIAA (I really like that one, first time I’ve seen it). Personally, I love his music. I have almost all of his albums (still have to get a recent import being in the US).

Aside from loving his music all the way through his collection and also loving how his music has evolved (am only 23, his music was out for a bit before I knew about it), he seriously is a genius. He has talked about stuff like this before. And now he is doing it. Due to my recent stint in video games I have not kept up with the marketing of his new album year, but you can bet yourself I will be looking into it tonight after work (oh yah, shouldn’t be here). I have loved every concert I went to (not all of his openers though, but thats another story). He is a great showman. Knows how to present to his fans. And he really loves us (at least I get that impression). At one concert he seriously apologized for being away for so long (The With Teeth tour, when he was in Detroit at Joe Louis) because he had recently battled alcoholism. He stopped often to talk to the crowd. And everybody there loved him. He is one of the very few artists I feel honestly cares about his fans. I feel this can be evidenced by his recent campaign here, which is costing him far less than most advertising I would bet.

Nobody says:


Guess again. Trent releases albums under Interscope (he has 1 more album left on his contract after Halo 24/Year Zero). Interscope is owned by Universal Music Group. Universal Music Group is a member of the RIAA.

That having been said, Trent has said that he may just very well release albums independently after Year Zero Pt. II.

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