Warner Music Latest To Jump On The Music Tax Bandwagon

from the please,-gov't,-save-our-business-model! dept

Remember earlier this month how there was a story about a guy going around pitching a required tax on ISPs for music sharing as a good idea? Well the main guy who was pushing that proposal has now been hired by Warner Brothers to make it a reality. While the idea is gaining some momentum, it doesn't change the extremely questionable nature of this proposal. It's a proposal based on the laziness of industry execs, who want others to go out and collect money for them, which they'll then get to "distribute" (by which we mean not actually distribute) to musicians.

The fact is that there is simply no reason for this proposal to go ahead. It treats everyone as a criminal first. In the article, one supporter of the plan even admits this:
"At this point, 96 percent of the population is guilty of some sort of infringement, whether they're streaming or downloading or sharing. What we have here is the widespread use of technology that declares all of the population to be illegal."
While that 96% number is made up and pure bunk, it's a bizarre world in which someone claims that nearly everyone is breaking the law and therefore we should punish everyone, rather than get rid of the law. Considering that more and more musicians are showing that there are perfectly good business models that don't require treating everyone as a criminal, can someone explain why this "music tax" should be put in place? And can they then explain what will happen when every other industry wants its own "you're a criminal" tax included on internet connectivity?

Filed Under: copyright, jim griffin, music, subscriptions
Companies: warner music group


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  1. identicon
    Music industry guy, 1 Apr 2008 @ 8:40pm

    Wow......don't talk if you have no idea what you'r

    OK let me explain this further for people who are just blurting out that they don't want to pay this tax and that it's a dumb idea....

    In the music industry, the revenue earned from sales of sound recordings, digital files, what have you is split amongst the artist (artist royalty), the producer (producer royalty), and the songwriter and music publisher (mechanical royalty) and the label gets a good chunk as well. If this tax goes through, it could be one of the best things for the music business and also for the consumer. Realistically, they can't charge much for this tax, maybe 5-10% at most of your current ISP bill....so like 3 bucks. If everyone with an internet connection (regardless if you have speakers or not [PS you can get speakers for 10 bucks at staples]) opts-in for this, this means that not only will the artist be able to recoup his or her advance from the label quicker and start making money off of royalties, the royalty rates will probably increase, thus giving your favorite artists more money and making them able to record and produce more music. I don't know...I think it's a good idea because everyone wins, but at a very low cost. The music industry not only will build up again but will also get its money it's been crying poverty for and the consumer will be able to get more for less. Simple economics.

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