Band Actually Promotes The Fact That Its Album Was Leaked (Against Its Wishes)

from the ways-to-respond dept

Earlier this month, we wrote about how the author Stephenie Meyer reacted when a manuscript of her latest novel was leaked online. She punished the fans, by saying that she would stop working on the book. This seemed like an odd move to us, and we said so. Some in the comments accused us of being unfair in suggesting that anyone ought to figure out ways to use such a leak to their advantage, but it does appear that some are doing exactly that.

Eric Samson writes in to let us know that he just received an email from the Canadian band The Dears, talking about how their album was leaked — against the band’s wishes — but, since it was out there, the band wanted fans to know it was there. Seems like the right response:

email between a friend of ours and us:

On 15-Sep-08, at 8:17 AM, ******* **** wrote:

It’s out there.

On 15-Sep-08, at 8:15 AM, Murray Lightburn wrote:

i heard.

On 15-Sep-08, at 8:15 AM, ******* **** wrote:

Your album leaked this morning.


So there you have it, friends: our new album and finest work to date, still not due for several weeks, is out there. While we are 100% appreciative that people care enough, The Dears are still pretty old-school. This was not exactly our intention and to be honest, even though it’s kind of cool, we can’t help feeling a little bit devastated. We were always aware of the inevitability, as we are living in the modern age. In fact, we don’t expect anyone to empathize at all. Nevertheless, you now have these options:

a.) download it now.
b.) wait and buy it later.
c.) both.

If we may have any say in the matter, whatever option you choose, we truly hope you enjoy it. We are excited and terrified all at once. Please give it a proper listen, maybe at least four times to start because it is pretty massive, intricate, layered. Much love, much care, and about 16 hours a day for so many, many weeks (months?) went into the making and delivery of it. We work hard for our patrons. In addition, we are not even certain of the quality of the files out there are like but we do know that the official version (out on OCT 20/21 worldwide) is of the utmost quality, mastered by the great Bob Ludwig. The sleeve and lyric book in the packaged version are also very cool so we really do trust that you’ll pick it up when it is released formally.

Eternally Grateful,

PS… Hope to see you…

Sep 30 Canada Waterloo, ON The Starlight w/ Gentleman Reg
Oct 1 Canada Hamilton, ON Casbah w/ Gentleman Reg
(and a long series of tour dates)

If it’s going to happen and there’s no way to stop it, might as well learn to take advantage of it.

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Comments on “Band Actually Promotes The Fact That Its Album Was Leaked (Against Its Wishes)”

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Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Rebecca

I fully agree. I doubt I’ll actually like their music, but their actions here make it fully worthwhile checking.
(most of my music comes from artists who are at least semi-okay with piracy – Newgrounds is good, with its ‘take what you want unless you want to use it for non-personal use, in which case ask nicely and the artist will probably agree’ attitude)

joh6nn says:

Re: Re:

>Who the fuck is Stephanie Meyer?
>And who the fuck are The Dears?

Meyer is an author, and The Dears are a Canadian band. both of those things are mentioned relatively prominently in Mike’s post.

>”Pirating” (do they even really understand what pirating is
>versus just freely copying?) would be giving their crap
>(wahtever it is) too much fucking credit.

the only times the word “pirating” appears on this page, post or otherwise, are in your comment.

apparently, the only word you were able to focus on in this post, is one that doesn’t actually appear in it. i congratulate you on your complete failure at literacy, and your subsequent ignorant belligerence. i hope it brings you everywhere you want to go in life.

artists says:

Poor dears....

This was not exactly our intention and to be honest, even though it’s kind of cool, we can’t help feeling a little bit devastated.

From a business standpoint, I understand the argument that leaking an album can actually help promote and sell the album, and I also understand that most bands don’t really see much actual revenue from their records in the first place.

However, from the tone of the Dears message, it sounds like they weren’t really thinking of the business side at all. They had just spend countless hours writing, producing and recording a work of art, and now they were being deprived of the opportunity to present it as a finished product the way they wanted it to debut. They don’t even know what version was leaked, or what the quality of the files might be.

This site and others like it spend a lot of time focusing on what effects piracy and leaks such as this one have on the Industry, or on profitability, and other business concerns. Yet, what about the artists right to have some say in how his art is presented, or at the very least debuts?

hegemon13 says:

Re: Poor dears....

They do have control over how they present it. People can make shoddy rips, and that does not affect the quality of the original. That’s the same mentality as the person who says a crappy movie remake “ruined the original.” No, it didn’t. It’s the same as it always was.

For those who appreciate and care about the value of the artists’ presentation, the downloads will not be enough, as the end of The Dears email hinted. An for the rest that don’t care about the presentation, why would the band care what they thought about it?

Paul says:

Re: Poor dears....

I think this is a very good point and I would like to second your notion that there is more than business at stake here. I can say that as an artist myself, when it comes to a record release, I would be more personally vested in the presentation of the record in debut format than in the monetary consequences. Meaning over money…

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

No idea who The Dears are. But Meyers is an author who writes young adult novels. Several million copies in print, in just about any language you choose to name. I’ve never read her, but a couple months ago she was getting press on network news because her last novel was released to Star Wars and Harry Potter type crowds lining up in full costume throughout the country.

brownieapple says:

>I think what he’s saying is that these people are no-names,
>we don’t know who they are. Sure, we know who they are in
>the context of the story, but WHO are they?

Stephanie Meyer is lady who wrote the Twilight book series.
which was just turned into a movie. she she actually is kind of well know. and has been for the past several years.

and regardless of the fact if they are well known or not. the point of the story is that there are ways to use the leaking of your product to your advantage[the band] and disadvantage[the writer{she could of just used it as a teaser. but what ev. shes got bank now cause of the movie}]

WSO420 says:

there is still hope...

I have to say that this experience must be humbling for a small band, and they seem to have handled it well. On the other hand… people like Myers are complete twits… people want to get their hands on your stuff so badly that they would use this channel and you spite them by dropping the project. In contrast to The Dears… look at GnR… they are suing a 16yr old kid for millions of dollars… surely alot more than the album will ever be worth based on the new tracks I’ve heard. Big bands should try to capitalize on other streans of income like concerts and merch as well as endorsements… more and more content becomes freely available daily so it is inevitable that if someone wants a movie, game or album for free they WILL get their hands on it. The music industry needs to wake up and start creating a new business model which fits into the digital age. They have been too greedy for too long and the chicken’s coming home to roost!! It is sad that in an industry full of talented artists and execs… none of them seem to grasp what the Dears have noticed… people are going to share your content, period. They respect it and are hurt by it at the same time… but they realize that they can appeal to music fans by letting them know that if you want to get the content the way the artist meant to represent it along with the artwork all while supporting the band that they can purchase the album, even if you already downloaded it. I will continue to get my music for free because I CAN… I will continue to BUY the albums that I love because they are worth it and I WANT TO SUPPORT THE ARTISTS who created it… but give me my $15 worth when you release an album. Most bands don’t even print the lyrics in the liner notes any more, what a joke!! Another thing to note, I have always hated the way that Lars Ulrich from Metallica handled the whole Napster thing… does he know that he made more enemies and introduced more people to music sharing than anyone else… while at the same time trying to prosecute kids for downloading music!! Shame on him, I sold my Metallica CD’s to the music store and downloaded them instead in my way of no longer monitarily supporting a band that cared more about the money than the fans. It is evedent that Metallica no longer cares about the fans when you listen to their last couple albums… I for one hate the new album “Death Magnet” by Metallica… and yeah I listened to it before the release… IT SUCKS. I would rather spend my hard earned money supporting a band like the Dears without ever having heard a single note than ever buy a Metallica album again. P.S. To all the big time musicians out there, don’t FUCK WITH THE FANS… after all we are the ones who made you what you are by supporting you with our hard earned money and we can just as easily decide NOT to support you. Stick to selling your songs to Hollywood for the next movie or big commercial, to ESPN for their highlight shows and deliver quality albums that are full of content so the fans don’t feel ripped off. The music industry and big time bands did this to themselves by ripping off the fans for so long… sorry that you may have to back on tour and actually connect with your fans if you want to sell more albums today. It will only get easier to duplicate digital media as we progress into the future so you should start thinking about doing the right thing to get back what you have lost over the last decade!! Funny that I saw Metallica and GnR at the same concert back in the day… now because of them suing children over downloading music I will NEVER support either of them EVER AGAIN!!

Twinrova says:

Re: there is still hope...

“P.S. To all the big time musicians out there, don’t FUCK WITH THE FANS… after all we are the ones who made you what you are by supporting you with our hard earned money and we can just as easily decide NOT to support you.”

This statement sure did put an entirely new spin on the blog’s message.

You think it’s okay for fans to hack servers and steal music to put all over the internet?

You think it’s okay for fans to hack servers and steal books to put all over the internet?

To me, it’s the fans who are crying foul and taking advantage of technology to screw over these artists who work hard to give people like you entertainment, hopefully while making a living at it.

It seems fans expect everything for free (maybe reading Mike’s blogs all the time) and now they’re making damn sure they get it by whatever means necessary.

Now I’m truly understanding the concept of DRM and why it’s there.

It no longer stands for “Digital Rights Management”.

Now, it means “Don’t Release Me”.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: there is still hope...

Here we go again, purposely misinterpreting what people say to match your own preconceptions…

Let’s look at what WSO420 actually was actually saying (albeit a little less eloquently than he could have done):

“I will continue to BUY the albums that I love because they are worth it and I WANT TO SUPPORT THE ARTISTS who created it… but give me my $15 worth when you release an album.”

“I for one hate the new album “Death Magnet” by Metallica… and yeah I listened to it before the release… IT SUCKS. I would rather spend my hard earned money supporting a band like the Dears without ever having heard a single note”

In other words, he’s saying he previews the albums before he buys them. He doesn’t spend his money on albums he doesn’t like after listening to them, preferring to help out the acts that he does like. He also doesn’t give money to bands who are apparently anti-fan (Metallica) rather than pro-fan (The Dears), giving money instead to those who are interested in promoting good music.

Now, notice something there, which you wilfully ignored. Nowhere did he say he expected all music for free. He admitted downloading albums but then also bought some of those albums. Instead of ending up with a copy of Death Magnetic, which he apparently loathes, he will now end up with an album he enjoys, and considers good value for money. Instead of paying Metallica good money for a product he doesn’t like, he may now listen buy an album who he’s encouraged to follow and buy further material from. Everybody wins – except Metallica, but they have obviously dug their own grave here with this particular person.

You see the difference? Well, knowing your usual responses probably not… Here’s my responses to the rest of your ill-judged little rant:

“You think it’s okay for fans to hack servers and steal music to put all over the internet?

You think it’s okay for fans to hack servers and steal books to put all over the internet?”

Notice you say “fan” both times. Not “pirate” nor “anarchist”, but “fan”. Fan is short for fanatic, a person who follows, enjoys and promotes the product, be it a book or album. Why do you suppose it’s OK to alienate these people? Why do you think an artist can still complain about lost sales if they do so?

“To me, it’s the fans who are crying foul and taking advantage of technology to screw over these artists who work hard to give people like you entertainment, hopefully while making a living at it.”

Most fans have been battling against the whims of the music industry for decades, and that battle has increased over the last decade. The record industry has been hell-bent on first trying to ban products that customers want (MP3 players), then trying to artificially restrict not only the location they can buy the music in, but how and where it can be played back. Of course the fans are going to fight this! The record industry has seen the writing on the wall for a decade, they only have themselves to blame if they continue to refuse to offer this, while the “pirates” do. it’s not “screwing over the artists”, it’s taking back control of music from the RIAA labels, who – surely this doesn’t surprise you – do NOT have the artists’ best interests at heart either. read up on how the industry has been run for the last few decades if you don’t believe me.

“It seems fans expect everything for free (maybe reading Mike’s blogs all the time) and now they’re making damn sure they get it by whatever means necessary.”

Please read my comment, the posts above yours, and many other threads. Nobody is saying this. In fact, The Dears seem to have won over a lot of people who has never heard of them before this incident was reported. People who may now buy the albums, who would never have bought (or even heard) the music if they had not been able to preview it for free.

“Now I’m truly understanding the concept of DRM and why it’s there.

It no longer stands for “Digital Rights Management”.

Now, it means “Don’t Release Me”.”

That would be nice. If the only music released was the DRM-free type, the industry, artists and customers would be a lot better off.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:2 there is still hope...

If everybody pirated, all these people would be out of business. They’re not, so a lot of people are still buying. The trick is to convince them to do so.

DRM is the thing that will not work. Thanks to eMusic and other DRM-free stores, I’ve gone from buying maybe one or two CDs per month, to buying at least TEN every month. I did use to “pirate”, now I don’t.

The reason? Reasonably priced, unrestricted music downloads. Unfortunately, not everyone has the relatively independent tastes I do, so the RIAA needs to offer something worthwhile as well. The current mainstream market is a mess, mainly thanks to the RIAA’s early attempts at controlling customers.

DS78 says:

Re: Re: Re:2 there is still hope...

Do you realize Metallica streamed half their new album on their website before it was released? There were MANY people who legally previewed Metallica’s new album (I did). Nowhere in his post did he say he downloaded it illegally. You fail, epically.

On the Metallica side of the coin. I like the new one. I think it’s awesome of them to stream some of it online before release. That’s one thing, as a fan, that I was hoping for. BTW, I Own ’em All….

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:4 there is still hope...

So, here’s the point. Band A decides to give away some of their music and manage to leverage that giveaway to generate more sales, and more income. Band B don’t decide to give away their music, but it ends up online for free anyway.

Why do you automatically assume that Band B will lose money, even though the end result (music online for free) is the same for both bands?

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:6 there is still hope...

I don’t. I stated that *if* band A make more income (which often happens)… Please read what’s being said.

My point is that people like you make the assumption that free music = lost income, while every week there’s a new example of a band that managed to make money without depending on selling the music. If you actually read this site properly, the only thing that’s ever said is that this is no longer a way to make money and the industry needs to change in order to leverage other income streams.

Yet, you and people like you always seem to parse that as “we want all music for free”, even though that’s the opposite of what’s really said here…

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:8 there is still hope...

Erm… no. I accept others’ opinions when they’re based in fact – you’re yet to supply any apart from a single link to a major label report on CD sales – hardly the whole industry.

Digital sales – as evidenced by the exact article you linked to – are rising. Other areas of the music industry – such as merchandising and concert sales – are also rising. The only part of the music industry that’s having problems is CD sales (even vinyl sales are rising!).

The problem is that the major labels have made shifting plastic discs their major model. they have spent much of the last decade fighting digital sales, so have to play catch up. Sales of digital files aren’t catching up quickly enough to balance the loss in demand for CDs. this is as much due to the industry’s attempt to first block, then artificially control digital sales as it does with the actions of consumers.

Again, leverage the things that aren’t selling to shift those that are, and everyone’s happy. Fail to do so, and you end up with the DRM mess that’s put many people off buying anything.

PaulT (profile) says:

I’m glad they have this attitude and I wish there were more like them. Here’s why any other move is idiotic:

1. Release dates are artificial in a digital market. They were necessary in the physical market to give maximum exposure to a product, because physical shelf space was limited and skewed towards the week’s new releases. This no longer happens with digital products, so there’s no reason why an album cannot be available to buy as soon as the master is approved. The only reason is “marketing” – i.e. trying to get people to want to buy the albums – which makes no sense if people already want to do so.

2. Any digital product can be copied, and will usually be available on a pirate network the moment the CD is released, usually sooner. Why not let people buy the album instead of artificially creating a situation where the pirate version is available to download but the official version cannot be bought (as per the article)?

3. Not every download is a lost sale. Many people who download also buy the official CD when available (assuming they like it). Even those who don’t buy the CD will often buy concerts tickets and merchandise, as well as introducing their friends to the album, who may then go on to buy those things as well.

Now, apart from the fact that it doesn’t look like The Dears are offering a way to buy the album now (a very stupid move IMHO – physical delay is inevitable, but why not put the album online now?), they seem to be getting most of the above points. They’re also not exactly a household name, so even this “bad” news is good publicity for the band as per the first comment here.

I wish more bands would realise that such leaks are inevitable, and there are many ways to leverage them to gain more fans rather than alienating them.

Bear says:

“And who the fuck are The Dears?”
“Sure, we know who they are in the context of the story, but WHO are they?”|DEARS&sql=11:knfuxqlkld6e~T1

It appears they’ve been together for 13 years and this is their 6th album, so they’re not rookies. It’s not the type of music I like, but I support their wise marketing decision.

Charlie says:

common sense

The last sentance of this article is completely true. If you don’t want something publically displayed, then don’t put it on the internet. Granted there may be some employee that just can’t help but sucumb to the temptation to take a song from work home and it gets snaged by his teenager or whatever. However in the case of someone’s novel being leaked and then refusing to write anymore is just ridiclious. As far as the entertainment industry is concerned, any publicity is good publicity. If its out there use it to your advantage. Set up a sequal. Make another version of the song that no one’s heard yet. Or, here’s a wacky idea, climb down from the cross you’re on, use the wood to build a bridge and get over it!

I wish I had those kind of hours.... says:



Uh … you only had to work 16 hours a day for a few weeks (months?), at most? That’s not something I’d brag about — sorry to break the news, a lot of people work 16 hour days for years…and some work 12 hard hours the majority of their lives … I’m not saying what you produced isn’t great, isn’t art, isn’t worth it … I’m just saying your comment seemed a little whiny and a bit lacking of perspective.

Keith Jolie says:

Re: perspective

Your comment presumes a few things:

You make it sound like this is the only source of income for the band – a lot of indie bands I know also hold down full or at least part time jobs to fund their music.

You also make it sound like they are trying to make their entire life’s earnings off of this one album. I can assure you that’s not what they are getting at.

You forget that long before they went into the studio, they probably spent a year writing and rehearsing these songs.

Lastly – all that time in the studio costs money…on average about $100 an hour or more. So even if they worked on this for a month, it probably COST the band close to $35000 (not including art design, printing etc). to get to this point. So all they are hoping to do at this point is recoup their costs.

When you read these stories, try to understand that not ever band makes money off what they do. They very often do it because they love it and are just trying to not lose money doing it.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: perspective

you wouldn’t have much music to choose from if bands only recorded when they had been pre-paid to complete the recording.

Most business ventures are at their core, a bit of a gamble. You risk in the hopes of a reward. You invest time trying to sell a service, then you deliver the service and get paid. You manufacture a product in the hopes people will buy it.

Music isn’t much different.

risk and reward is the basis of commerce.

the muse says:

YOU poor dears

POP Survey!

How many of you hater commenters are actually musicians? You know how to play more than you stereo? You can create a melody, match lyrics to a tune, write sheet music, and play your hearts out? 1? 2 of ya?

Musicians, for the most part, cannot help themselves. They have it in them and it has to be played. They WILL give their music away for free if they had to – they *want* to play. But you talentless fucks who drop judgement calls on their abilities to whether their muic fits within your narrowly defined focus are the real cancer.

Stop your immature ragging on about how you want all your music for free and how they suck.

Do something creative and come back when you shat upon yourself.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: YOU poor dears

Are you reading a different thread? I see nothing about people demanding music for free, nor supporting piracy.

I did, however, see plenty of comments about how this response by the band may have created new fans among those people who were previously unaware of their existence. Hence, more people who may actually pay the band money.

I also see some comment about how, since the leak has happened anyway, the band might as well leverage that for more support (as The Dears have done) rather than whine and threaten not to work any more (Stephanie Meyer). I also personally suggested that the band might want to offer the digital download for sale now rather than wait, so people want to pay money can do so.

Go back to your playpen, intelligent people are discussing reality.

Nate says:

Re: YOU poor dears

And, so, Picasso, my little Tom Waits, how do you expect to turn me onto your sound? That sound that you just want to share with the world because it’s a reflection of your soul; that sound you just want to give away to the world as your gift…

Oh, that’s right, you said I should pay to hear it.

If you want to make art for art’s sake, but share it for money’s sake, don’t expect to make money off of it. K?

eleete (user link) says:

Re: YOU poor dears

“Musicians, for the most part, cannot help themselves.”

awwwwwww, that says so much.

Let’s set up a welfare system then. Let’s allow these poor souls to just work a fraction of the time a normal human does. But let’s give them payment for their “art” for their entire lives plus 70 years ? Is that fair ?

Nate says:

Had no idea who The Dears were before this, but, Mike’s point being, I’m at least gonna give them a listen-to now that they wouldn’t have gotten otherwise without paying for. And, you know what? If I really do like them, if they really are worth my listener-dollars, then they’ll probably get money out of me they wouldn’t have gotten otherwise. This is how music ought to work.

Nathan G says:

Leaked or Banned

Happens all the time. Usually someone is banned, not leaked and promoted. After all, censorship is becoming America’s favorite past-time. The US gov’t (and their corporate friends), already place protesters in fenced-in cages, ban books like “America Deceived” from Wikipedia, Amazon and Facebook, and shut down Ron Paul. Free Speech forever.
Last link (before Google Books caves to pressure and drops the title):
America Deceived (book)

Anonymous Coward says:

You are missing the point again at techdirt, that it is WRONG to STEAL music. This poor band has just accepted that it’s being stolen before they can even sell it, which is very sad. They have just basically said they have given in to piracy, and are praying you will be a good person and buy the album still, but so very few people do this.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re:

Again, where was it said that it was right to steal music (not that copyright infringement is theft, but still)?

Read the article and then the thread next time. You’ll see a lot of people going “oh, I’d never heard of this band before but I’ll check them out now”. You’ll see none of the venom nor shaking of heads that accompanied recent negative moves by Guns N Roses and Metallica on the same issue.

This “poor band” has just gained a potential rise in their fanbase by accepting the realities of today’s market. If they lose anything, it’s due to them not making the album available to buy immediately, instead of forcing people to wait weeks before allowing them to hand over their money. I bet they could have made thousands by simply posting their album to iTunes/Amazon/eMusic/whatever.

(For anyone wanting to check them out, they are on eMusic here:

and you can preview them on among others;

I’m not a fan nor affiliated with either website, but I thought they deserved to be advocated. Unlike AC, who is one of those people who simply wails and gnashes their teeth at injustice instead of actually doing anything positive…)

Bob says:

Fake? Real?

I don’t buy any of this. This is most likely an attempt at getting media coverage. How many more “leaks” are we supposed to believe actually happen anyway?

Look! Marillion did it too!

Although they released their own album. They didn’t come up with any story of a ‘leak.’

This is about as genuine as these ‘leaked sex videos.’

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Fake? Real?

So, you think that these two cases are the same? Interesting…

Marillion willingly released their new album for free, in exchange for email addresses to use for promotion to those who downloaded it.

The Dears’ album leaked 1 month before it’s available for sale, with nothing in return (except, possibly, a bit of goodwill thanks to their level-headed response).

Notice any difference? Anyway, even if this is some kind of promo stunt, it’s definitely a better move than recent RIAA attempts to “safeguard” the material and suggests that increasing numbers of people are actually understanding the market they work in. That’s a good thing…

Joel says:

Understanding guys

Wow – people like Bob just don’t get it….

As a musician I work friggin hard to produce my product for our following – and we’re a cover band – we don’t write most of our own material…. So you think these guys did this as a stunt…

When a band releases or leaks their own material, its mostly little by little – that gives the fans a little taste of what coming, but it sucks when someone steals the matial puts it up somewhere – talk about stealing thunder… they release dates are there because the media machine bands have whether large or small, needs the time to ramp up…

For the most part I love buying CD’s and OWNING the material .. I don’t download unless the band is hard to find or something, I like supporting the bands I cover cause they did all the work…

Norm says:

“Much love, much care, and about 16 hours a day for so many, many weeks (months?) went into the making and delivery of it.”

Well DEARS I hope you don’t mind the good folks out here downloading and sharing your music for free, because after all it’s their right to do so. If you don’t like figure out a different way to make money off your music.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re:

As I’ve mentioned before in this thread, The Dears could probably make a lot of money if they only allowed people to actually buy it now, instead of forcing them to wait until the 20th/21st October…

It’s not about “free”, it’s about utilising the market successfully. Artificially withholding a product for a month while it’s available elsewhere for free neither makes sense nor fits into the above description.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:

PaulIT – Getting this stuff to market takes time – itunes can sometimes turn around things in a couple of weeks, but most sites take longer. Turnaround time on Manufacturing is similar time, and then getting it shipped to distributors adds another week or so.

So it’s not that simple – I’m pretty sure you can buy this off the arts and crafts site (their label) but most people will look for it on one of the other sites that they are used to using.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

…and that’s my point.

Physical production and distribution take time and money. While people are waiting for that to happen, the pirated copy is already out there.

Digital releases should not be delayed. If they have a digital master, it should be available to digital stores (within the timeframe specified by that particular store, at least). The Dears’ press release suggests that no version will be released until the 20th October.

For a CD, this makes sense. For digital downloads, you’re encouraging people to go to the pirate sites by not giving people the opportunity to buy.

Oh, and it looks like the new album is being released on Dangerbird Records. There’s no option to buy the album digitally there…

Keith Jolie says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:


Did you read anything I said?

First of all – you can buy it right now (arts and crafts records…you can buy the mp3s, the cd’s, double vinyl – the whole shooting match, right now) – but most people (as you’ve just illustrated) don’t go to the band website or the record label site to find their albums – they probably go to itunes or amazon or something like that.

Second – I was just pointing out that the most popular outlets for digital sales (itunes, amazon etc.) have a process to add items to their catalog that takes about 2 weeks or more. So most people looking for the album that day, wouldn’t find it. This isn’t the band’s fault, it’s just the way itunes works.

Lastly – if you want to buy some of the really cool stuff (the double vinyl album set with the bonus tracks for instance)…it takes time to get those shipped to retailers.

This is why bands have release dates…so that they can be sure that all the places that someone might go to find their music have it on time. It’s project management, and that’s probably why they weren’t nuts about the files being released this early.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

Retraction accepted in your next post…

But that’s my point, again. Yes, if people want a physical release like a vinyl or CD, they will need to wait. That’s fine – there are real, physical, logistical reasons why this is so, and those people who want such a release will probably not be swayed by the availability of a digital version.

For the digital release, it’s stupid. Look at the dates above. The band’s own press release states that while the album was leaked on the 15th Sept, people need to wait until 20th Oct to buy the album. That means there’s a 5 week gap where the free pirate digital copy is available, but the legal to buy digital version is not. That is simply stupid. Yes, I accept that online stores will have certain delays between submission and sale, but 5 weeks? That’s just the time between the leak and the release – how many more weeks has the master been sitting on someone’s hard drive unavailable for sale before the leak even happened?

“This is why bands have release dates…so that they can be sure that all the places that someone might go to find their music have it on time.”

No. Bands have release dates so that they can market the album before release. This is only a good move in the physical market, where shelf space is limited and skewed towards new releases. In the digital arena, it’s idiotic, especially when a pirate copy is available before that date. Release the album, let the people who want to buy it now do so, and then market towards those who didn’t.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re:2 Re:

“When a market changes and you refuse to change with it, the results are your fault.”

Would it not be more accurate to say:

“When a black market develops to copy your music without paying you and you cry “foul”, the creation of the black market and the results as it pertains to your music are your fault.”?

DanC says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

“When a black market develops to copy your music without paying you and you cry “foul”, the creation of the black market and the results as it pertains to your music are your fault.”?

No, that’s completely inaccurate, and not what I implied. I’m simply saying that the market has changed, and relying on a model that longer works makes no sense. It’s a simple fact that digital goods cannot be controlled to the level that physical goods can, because they’re completely different. So why would you think that they can be sold the same way?

Legal or not, the tracks are going to wind up, for free, on the internet. That’s not the fault of the artist by any means – it’s a direct result of the basic nature of digital goods. And a business model that takes advantage of that basic nature makes more sense than trying to legislate the stability of the old model.

PaulT (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:3 Re:

“”When a market changes and you refuse to change with it, the results are your fault.”

Would it not be more accurate to say:

“When a black market develops to copy your music without paying you and you cry “foul”, the creation of the black market and the results as it pertains to your music are your fault.”?”

No. Here’s the (no so) subtle difference:

To address your first quote, markets change all the time. the vinyl market is not the same as the wax cylinder market, nor is it the same as the CD market. I’m sure most people would have little sympathy for those who chose to ignore the vinyl market because they were more interested in the piano roll market. Why, then, should we be expected to shed a tear for those who ignore the digital market, simply because the CD market seemed so lucrative once-upon-a-time?

To address your second “quote”, no the *creation* of the black market is not the musicians’ fault. However, the black market changes the playing field. It has proven utterly pointless and ineffective to fight said black market, so the sensible choice to counter this is to offer the consumer more. Offer higher margin items, or higher value items, to the customer rather than trying to sue them because they downloaded the leaked copy that came out 6 weeks before the CD.

There are many cliches stated about this situation, but they’re all appropriate. Buggy whip makers went out of business, while those who changed their business to include automobiles prospered, even if it meant they were no longer in the buggy whip market.

Anonymous Coward says:

“I want “DRM-less” music, I want it to not cost anything, and I want to get a copy of a song/album whenever I darn well please without having to wait for a specified release date. Once you give me this, which I have every right to expect and demand, then I will think about buying something like a concert ticket. Then again, I may not, but at least the artist has had his/her music reach the masses.”

Anonymous Coward says:

I’m bored of this ongoing back and forth.
Either you believe that you should buy music that is for sale or don’t.
Either you believe that giving away music is in the best interests of artists or you don’t.

At the end of the day, I think what we’ll see is that music recordings will be free, but there won’t be as many made. The bands that continue to form will do so in spite of the fact that there’s no money in it. The really good ones will charge prohibitively large sums to see them in concert.

And then people will complain that music has become elitist and that only the rich can see a concert.

It used to be that you could buy a record for around $15, go see a concert for around $20 and get a concert shirt for another $20. Now the concert tickets are between $40 to into the $100’s of dollars, concert t-shirts are $50 or more..but you can download mp3’s off the internet for free..I’m not sure we’re any further ahead. Unless you never go to see concerts…in which case, I feel sorry for you.

Derek Kerton (profile) says:

Technology As Double Edge Sword

RE 41

“To me, it’s the fans who are crying foul and taking advantage of technology to screw over these artists who work hard to give people like you entertainment, hopefully while making a living at it.”

The Fans are taking advantage of technology, eh?

In 1800, if a musician wanted to make a buck, they needed to compose and/or perform live constantly. In very basic terms, that’s how musicians earned a living.

Then came along recording technology. Vinyl, tape, CDs, whatever. MUSICIANS TOOK ADVANTAGE of this technology to extend the reach of their music, and their profitability. They no longer needed to perform for their music to be enjoyed, they recorded it, and received more money.

Then came other broadcast technology. Radio, TV, MTV, Satellite. MUSICIANS TOOK ADVANTAGE of these to increase the reach of their music, to promote the recorded media, and to get royalties.

Recording equipment and mixing gear have gotten cheaper and cheaper. Not, all that’s needed to record and do a high quality mix of a debut album is a freakin Mac. Technology has advanced, and MUSICIANS HAVE TAKEN ADVANTAGE of lower costs of production.

It seems to me that musicians have been taking GREAT advantage of technology. In the days of Mozart, a great musician like him would need a benefactor just to make a living. Is Britney Spears a better musician than Wolfgang? Somehow, technology has given musicians such phenomenal leverage that someone as mediocre as Nickelback can make thousands of times the riches of Mozart. Technology has multiplied their earning ability like an amplifier pumps up a guitar.

Musicians didn’t do a thing to invent radio, TV, vinyl, or CDs, but by gum, they sure have taken advantage. BTW, I don’t fault them for this; not one single bit! Why not take advantage? Technology changed, the world changed, and musicians benefited – as did the consumers who had much greater access to music.

But when the Internet age hit, and digital music file technology arrived, then suddenly technology worked differently – for the first time, it wasn’t obviously to the great benefit of musicians (or the RIAA). The impacts of this technology are more ambiguous, and work both ways. They are disruptive, and new models are needed. That’s scary, forces change, and is often unwelcome.

Well, I say tough @#$%. Technology was great when it made you all wealthy, but now that it has some negative implications, the RIAA and some musicians want to claw back at technology like it’s some kind of demon. You can’t have it both ways. Either pick up your violin and go play concertos for the Duke in the courtyard in the hopes that he’ll toss you a schilling for this month’s rent, or accept the technology of the day and deal with it.

Seems the Dears are getting in tune with the latter option.

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