More Musicians Pissed Off Over Their Own Music Videos Being Taken Off YouTube

from the nice-job,-labels... dept

Eric points us to yet another story of yet another artist getting pissed off that his own videos have been pulled from YouTube. The writeup suggests that this is about competing record labels issuing bogus DMCA-style takedowns on artists as a part of their competitive fervor, but I’m not sure that’s true in this case. The artist, Calvin Harris, is based in the UK, who is signed to Sony Music. In the UK, due to a royalty dispute, Google has removed all official major label music from the site. So contrary to TechCrunch’s reporting, it seems that this may just be collateral damage of the silly royalty dispute, rather than nefarious competitors issuing bogus takedowns. Still, the point remains: this dispute, which the music industry claims is to “help” artists, is actually doing exactly the opposite.

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Comments on “More Musicians Pissed Off Over Their Own Music Videos Being Taken Off YouTube”

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ChimpBush McHitlerBurton says:

Labels Obsolete

It’s getting to the point that you’re actually *harmed* by signing with a big label as opposed to going it alone.

Unless a label is 1000% behind your act, and promotes the shit out of your stuff to the public, then you’re screwed.

Small-time, big-label artists who are signed but marginalized by the label, stand to lose out big time when their low-level attention by the label locks them out of other possibilities.


Go it alone unless you are U2. No one will ban *your* videos, and you stand a better chance of success through viral publicity alone than you do through *established channels* when those channels are locked up in foolish posturing and IP protectionism.

Seriously kids, at least *try* the home-rolled publicity model before taking the Venture Crapital Big Label Money.

Unless you’re the next Guns ‘N Roses, you won’t get much in the way of benefit, and you stand to LOSE BIG TIME when your material can’t be seen/heard by the public due to your contractual agreement with an organization that’s in a deathgrip with new media, new ideas, and new business models.

It’s your art. Lock it up at your peril.


LuluMary (profile) says:

Re: Labels Obsolete

quite true. I wonder what the reasoning is behind the majors’ signing acts and then not investing in them. What are the bean counters thinking? Why do they bother to sign acts they have no intention of promoting properly?

I have been self-promoting for a while now, and it is a struggle. But I have also turned down label offers that would have required me to give up control of my catalog and my publishing, and I just didn’t trust it. Am I glad I did? Who knows, I’m not sure how to work the “new model” either, and I can’t seem to break even, let alone get ahead financially. It seems like a dark time for independent artists with no startup capital, no matter how clever your Facebook page is.

Mechwarrior says:

Re: Re: Re:

Daft Punk also uses samples, does that mean they arent musicians? Of course you would say yes, since Daft Punk is a big group.

Its just the same rick-white-man entitlement that many of these Anonymous cowards portray. “You have to be a big star before your music is legitimate”.

Im gonna say this straight. Y’all a bunch of middle aged crackers.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

“Y’all a bunch of middle aged crackers.”

And you might one day move out of mom’s basement.

As for Daft Punk, as they aspire to create something new (rather than just remixing someone else’s song and claiming it as they own) they are certainly further up the ladder than a house DJ. But in the end, it’s the differences between the sub-sub basement and just the basement.

MK says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Mech you miss the point entirely – no-one said its the size or popularity of an artist that determines their legitimacy. The only factor that matters is whether you created something original, or just cut and paste someone else’s work.
Bastardizing a song does not make it yours.
Using samples of course is legitimate if you are creating something original – the Beastie Boys manage to create highly original work while using many samples so it is possible

Robin Wauters (user link) says:

To be fair ...

As the author of the TC article, I wasn’t *really* trying to suggest it had anything to do with the tipsters’ claims of record labels throwing DMCA notices at each other, I was trying to point out that that’s the bigger issue and not one incident centered around a particular artist.

For what it’s worth, my source is ‘very well connected in the music industry’ (although I would say that, right) and is very serious about the DMCA background fights among records labels.

I’ll try to get more information out of him and do a separate post. Thanks for picking up the thread, Mike.

Mike Masnick (profile) says:

Re: To be fair ...

As the author of the TC article, I wasn’t *really* trying to suggest it had anything to do with the tipsters’ claims of record labels throwing DMCA notices at each other, I was trying to point out that that’s the bigger issue and not one incident centered around a particular artist.

Cool. Would definitely like to know more about rivals taking down via DMCA if you come across any evidence of it…

Anonymous Coward says:

Calvin harris is a pretty big house dj. And oh suprisey, DJs do produce remixes often times! I don’t understand what is up with the negativity. If it wasn’t for remixes, you wouldn’t know of but 1 or 2 songs in your local club! Oh wait, this is techdirt, most people here have never even been out of the basement, let alone gone downtown to a good nightclub.

And yes, calvin harris is an artist, as are many big-name djs. That’s how they get big-name usually. Good electro/house/trance/etc. music remixes are a lot more complex than the hip hop *play two tracks over one another*.

That being said, not that big of a fan of calvin harris, it’s just ridiculous how some people treat mixed music without thinking it through.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

“mix music” – it’s not making music, it’s just mixing music. He isn’t a musician, and my point is his post of “It’s my fucking song you absolute bastards” is both ironic and revealing. The song isn’t his, it is another band. It is a remix (one of four from a club EP). His rights to the song are probably very, very limited, much in the same manner any other producer would be restricted.

He doesn’t even understand where he stands himself, so his outrage is rather misguided. Again, he could have easily secured the rights (probably nothing more than a simple request back to the original artist, which he is obviously in contact with) and all things would have been fine.

As for “Oh wait, this is techdirt, most people here have never even been out of the basement, let alone gone downtown to a good nightclub.”, please. Been there, done that, got the crappy t-shirt, played the records, mixed the tunes, install the sound and lighting systems, restocked the beer and escorted drunks out the door. Just being intelligent and able to post logical arguments on Techdirt doesn’t turn us all into anti-social basement dwellers. Perhaps you may remember a time when mixing wasn’t done with samples and pre-recorded segements – which is something very very few “DJs” actually can do today. Most of them are entirely dependant on thier little beat matching software and their pre-made cut-ups.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

Nice! Very classy. It’s the typical answer of a 16 year old in Mom’s basement, refering to everyone as too f-cking old to understand anything. “new music”? OMG, come off it – House is old, techno has all but come and gone, trance had it’s heyday and it already receding back into Europe and Goa, well, let’s just say the Beatles got there before anyone else.

All that to say that music trends are like hemlines, they come and go. The difference in longevity and durability is usually found in the true musical artistry, not the ability to match up a couple of samples or program simple patterns into a sequencer. I got bored playing with trance music back with Reason 2.x, it was way too simplistic and formulatic, and could be made by anyone, even a non-musician.

So a remix “artist” is a musician like a plumber is an architect. They both work on buildings, but other than that, there is very little similar.

The true point is that the “music” he claims as his isn’t really his to start with, but someone else’s work. Seeing a remix artist get all huffy is like reading a keyboard warrior puffing on a chat board. Amusing, but usually misaimed. You might want to read the story and recheck your sights, you missed the target by a fair bit.

MK says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

“Usual AC crap. By your logic, Hyden, Beethoven, Bach and all the other classic composers did not make any music. Neither did most of the rock’n’roll musicians.”

How on Earth did you arrive at this conclusion? Please elucidate on your *reasoning* oh great sage, because it sure doesn’t follow from what AC said.

Jay says:

Stop Signing the Contracts

Even if this song were an original work of his, he signed a contract which stated that basically Sony owned the rights to the song and could decide what could and could not be done with it. If more musicians would take a stand and retain the distribution and marketing rights to their songs then this would go away. Instead the artist is just looking for the check, which shows a complete lack of artistic integrity in the first place. If you care that much about how your music is enjoyed, distributed and used then make the record company remove those clauses. If you are good enough and the company knows it can still make a decent amount of money off of you then you don’t have a problem. If however you aren’t that great and aren’t worth the hassle then you will either have to live with the decisions of the record companies or stick to your guns and find an alternate distribution method.

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