Terry McBride: Songs Are Not Copyright. Songs Are Emotions

from the getting-there... dept

Last year we wrote about a fascinating interview with Terry McBride, the CEO of Nettwerk Music, a Canadian record label that has proven to be quite innovative with its business models (and quite successful). He's really focused on helping musicians build up valuable brands, and then being able to make money off of those brands by being consumer-friendly, rather than consumer-antagonistic. One of the examples mentioned in that interview was a new album coming out where before the album was even released, the raw files were put online for fans to download and mix themselves. As he said, it wasn't "remixing," it was "premixing." And, the plan is to take the best of those and release the actual album in two formats: the official mix and the best fan mixes.

There's now another interview with McBride at the Future of Music site where he talks more about his vision of a music future where people effectively pay not for the music, but for the convenience of a "music valet" that does a better job organizing and finding the music you want when you want it. I'm still not convinced this is how things eventually work out, but it's certainly worth thinking about.

However, there are few statements McBride makes that are worth highlighting. First are two statements I agree with, and then one I don't:
People have always been sharing music. Why would I want to stop them? Why would I want to tell them what to do? The way to win was to get them to support my artists, not to force them to do it a certain way. I know I wouldn't like anyone telling me that.
This is a huge point that is so often missed by those in the industry who are focused on "protecting" and "control" rather than recognizing how people want to interact with musicians. The thing that I find most ridiculous from those complaining about file sharing is that they always make some statement along the lines of, "people who are sharing my files aren't fans, because real fans spend money." Of course, if that's true, what's the problem? The people who aren't fans aren't paying and (based on that statement) the real fans will pay. So, there's no problem at all...
Songs are not copyright. Songs are emotions.
Indeed. And that's the point. Do people pay for emotions? No. However, emotions will impact what people will pay for. However, despite agreeing with McBride on so much, I think he goes a bit off-track with the following:
Out of all of the sharing of music, who's making an economic return? Whoever is should then share that with all the people that allowed it to happen, creating a nice alignment of interests to grow any business. A lot of the providers have viewed music as free content, while at the same time paying for the cable content to grow their networks. They've been making money off the backs of the artists without any compensation for the artists at all. I think that's fundamentally wrong. I've also said it's fundamentally wrong to go after the consumers that are using that opportunity. That's not the right approach either. The phone companies and the cable providers have gotten away with murder in this whole situation.
This is the blame game and it's missing the point. The ISPs haven't "gotten away with murder." They've simply put in place a reasonable business model based on fundamental economics -- and there's nothing stopping plenty of others in the music business from doing the same. Demanding those who have figured out how to make money share with those who haven't isn't the answer either. There are business models that work just fine for those creating the music that don't require demanding anyone else share their profits. You just focus on coming up with real scarcities that give people or companies real reasons to buy and there are tons of business models that work.


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  1.  
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    ChurchHatesTucker (profile), Mar 13th, 2009 @ 6:59pm

    Ah, I see the problem

    A lot of the providers have viewed music as free content, while at the same time paying for the cable content to grow their networks.

    This seems to get to the root of a lot of the "you're playing my advertisement, thus you owe me money" mentality that seems so prevalent.

    Don't worry if you neighbors are city employees, as long as you're able to pull down a decent wage doing freelance work.

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 13th, 2009 @ 7:11pm

    Up front, one important thing about the Canadian music industry: CanCon. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_content - this system artificially creates demand for Canadian content where none might exist, creating the worst possible thing: Government enforced play that makes radio stations pay licensing fees to Canadian acts upwards to 35% of the total payout each year. So Nettwerk to some extent exists and prospers because they are working in a captive market.

    The other part is that he isn't wrong, maybe firing at the wrong people, but in the end he is right. Others have built businesses and profited off of the music industry without the artists and others involved getting any return on their efforts. ISPs are, however, at worse just facilitators, companies profiting off internet users who pay for the connection so they can download "FREE!" stuff. He needs to get more upset about other parts of the online world that are stealing outright from him.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 13th, 2009 @ 9:18pm

    Regardless of how Canadian Music Industry is setup, the more I read about Terry McBride, the more excited I am about his consumer-friendly ideas. Perhaps after American consumers have seen bands from the early 2000s blow wads of cash on private jets, being sued for running over paparazzi, owning 20 cars, and not showing up for rehearsals. The customers see this and they feel little remorse. Then over at Terry's place, you have bands that haven't been seduced by all the theatrics of the big labels. They play at small po-dunk cities, in churches, and see their work as their job and livelihood. They take it more seriously.

    As for the new order of business, I'd say he's about 90% of the way there. It just needs a little massaging, and I think he'll figure out the last 10% as the business grows and he's able to tap the correct talent and refine the revenue streams into something viable. He should be given some time to refine it. Squeezing telcos is an option, but, they already have enough on their plate from a technology perspective and playing "nanny" is so far away from a teleco's core competency that getting them onboard is seemingly non-imaginable. Besides, it's been proven time and time again that when someone finds a way to charge for something, some people will almost overnight find a way around it. I just can't see how it would be viable in the long term. That aside, he'll do well, and I want to see him, his label, and his artists all succeed.

     

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    Hutbed, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 6:45am

    go write your own music

    Terry McSnide needs to pay for study and practice time, work LONG HARD hours and get extremely lucky and produce a big hit song, THEN see how he feels about GIVING IT AWAY free.

    Usually these articles mention how fans FEEL about this, how bout the musicians.

    Byte me.

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 7:30am

    Re:

    Terry is living in a music socialists heaven, where the regulations effectively force a flow of income to him no matter what. It is like asking a chinese government official about capitalism. You are not going to get a very good answer.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Mar 14th, 2009 @ 7:39am

    Re:

    Funny, I've bought plenty of records on Nettwerk (which has offices in the US, UK, Germany). I'm neither Canadian nor have I ever set foot in that country.

    How does it feel to be so utterly wrong about everything, Dumb Harold?

     

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    PaulT (profile), Mar 14th, 2009 @ 7:51am

    Re: Re:

    Why can idiot Americans not tell the difference between socialism and communism, despite having a great many socialised systems themselves?

    How does the Canadian government's attempts to protect its own culture make the German, British and American branches of Nettwerk successful or make citizens of other countries interested in Nettwerk's products?

    Why would the head of a successful international organisation not have any relevant input into how his industry works, especially with regard to the successful new business models he promotes?

    So much stupidity in two sentences...

    (No offence intended to intelligent Americans reading this)

     

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    PaulT (profile), Mar 14th, 2009 @ 7:55am

    Re: go write your own music

    Aw... did nobody want to buy your crappy song?

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 8:30am

    Re: Re:

    It is amazing how many people think they are so smart, but they aren't able to connect the dots.

    Your UK / Germany / wherever branch of Nettwerk would not exist without what is done in Canada. Those branches are a result of success in Canada, a profitable business in a massively protectionist music market. Those artists who have spread worldwide have done it on the back on the money, exposure, and forced support they got in Canada. Quite simply, the can afford to take the time to get known because they are getting propped up by government mandates.

    Cause and effect - don't look at the effect and ignore the cause.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Mar 14th, 2009 @ 10:48am

    Re: Re: Re:

    So, you're saying that simply because a record company is Canadian, it can't possibly have been successful without government help? Even though much of its catalogue consists of non-Canadian artists, and a lot of its sales come from outside of the country? Do you also argue that, say, no British band could possibly have been successful without the BBC because they're essentially government funded? If so, I can happily inform you that's horseshit.

    Your argument still makes no sense, except from the bizarre "it's Canadian so the success must be due to socialism" viewpoint you seem to be sticking to. Even if the early days of the company during the 80s were only successful due to this protectionism, it's got bugger all to do with their recent successes with their new business models (i.e. what's currently uder discussion).

    If you still want to argue, feel free to provide some evidence of your claims other than the mere fact that the Canadian government has a pro-Canadian stance. I certainly can't fathom how you can claim that successful non-Canadian artists signed to Nettwerk like BT, Josh Rouse and Ladytron are dependent on this, let alone the many more successful non-Canadian artists signed to their management arm.

     

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    David, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 11:33am

    Songs are not copyright.....?

    Songs are not copyright. Songs are emotions.

    Indeed. And that's the point. Do people pay for emotions? No.

    I have to say I have rarely read such utter twaddle as that which is spouted about free music and songs and this article tops the lot. So, by this reckoning, those who are artistic, talented and creative should give away their product to those poor non-creative morons who earn their living slaving in some thankless and pointless task...just because ====emotions===give me a break....we work damned hard to bring you idiots music so that you can escape your tedious lives and you want if free.....well, I would like life to be free...why should i pay for food, cleaning, my car or any of the other things that I have to pay for to exist...

    GET A LIFE AND STOP WRITING SUCH DRIVEL>>>>>

     

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    PaulT (profile), Mar 14th, 2009 @ 12:00pm

    Re: Songs are not copyright.....?

    "we work damned hard to bring you idiots music so that you can escape your tedious lives and you want if free."

    If you're struggling to make money from your music, maybe calling your fans idiots isn't a great start? Perhaps you could start by learning that the people downloading for free and those paying you money are often the same group.

    By the way, I always find it amusing when self-proclaimed artists write these kinds of rants about not selling enough records, but show themselves as being utterly inept at actually promoting themselves in the process. For example, this "artist" who posts on an internationally read site but who neglects to mention his own recording name or use the free facility to link to their own website. Mind you, given the above rant, the mention of his recording name would make me want to avoid his music, not listen to or buy it.

     

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    Blaise Alleyne (profile), Mar 14th, 2009 @ 12:04pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    You've presented a case for correlation, but you called it cause and effect. Why do you think it's causation?

     

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    Guy one, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 12:05pm

    Re: Songs are not copyright.....?

    U must make some angry songs. I would never listen to an artist who calls his potential fans an IDIOT! SORRY DUDE your music probably SUCKS. why dont you give us a link to a place I can download a song for free, if its good you might get some sales out of it, because i buy all the music i like from amazon, or if i can, directly from the artist.

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 12:09pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I am not going to write you a history of Nettwerk here just to satisfy your lack of ability to search google for yourself. You also need to study the Canadian music industry (1984 to today to cover Nettwerks time) to understand how CanCon has created an artificial environment for Canadian music.

    Looking at their current roster without understanding their history and how they got there is missing my point entirely. Their starting artists such as Sara McLaughlin and Bare Naked Ladies developed their careers at the public teat, providing music in categories that didn't have enough CanCon which in turn made them stars in Canada by exposure and repetition. In both cases, the Canadian sales and income were used to springboard the artists outside of Canada. Without that Canadian system, those artists might never have been heard of outside of their home cities.

    Google is your friend, enjoy the history lesson.

     

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    Josh, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 12:11pm

    Re: Songs are not copyright.....?

    David,

    I think you missed the point of the paragraph that those two sentences resided in. The next line says that you, the musician, should then use those EMOTIONS that your SONG inspired in your FANS to get them to purchase your works. Not to really only on the music as a device to sell itself.

    And by the way, would you let me know what work you have produced because I want to make sure I don't buy it after reading your line "we work damned hard to bring you idiots music so that you can escape your tedious lives and you want if free."

    This is exactly why I have not bought any music in the last several years. I don't even download it. I just listen to the old CD's that I have in my possession or to the terrestrial radio or via Pandora.com. I just want to make sure that if I hear your music, I can change the station real quick.

    Your attitude should be twofold. 1) all musicians that I know, play/make/write music because they LOVE it. It's almost a turn-on for them to play/write/make music. They would do it 24/7 if they could. So if for you writing music is such a drag, you must not be much of a musician. 2) You should write music that differentiates yourself from the fodder that is out there. I mean, if you are writing music for Britney Spears, or Jessica Simpson, or one of the innumerable boy bands out there, you deserve to have no one listen to your music. Make it worth my money for me to buy it, and I will buy it.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 12:40pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Are you a washed up entertainment exec, Harold? A little angry you can't sell your crap in Canada due to no market for it, and it not being Made in Canada?

     

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    PaulT (profile), Mar 14th, 2009 @ 2:11pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I'm fully aware of how the Canadian system works, but that's not what's under discussion here. You have been maintaining that nothing that Terry McBride says about their *current* success is relevant because of the way the Canadian system works.

    This is at odds with the fact that Nettwerk has been successful internationally with a large roster of *non-Canadian* artists. You have yet to provide anything resembling an explanation for this, choosing to ignore these points in favour of repeating the same point about Canadian music.

    I would like you to explain how Nettwerk's international success is, as you keep trying to argue, directly tied in with the Canadian government's culture policies. Even when, in many cases, this protectionism does not apply. All I'm seeing so far is irrational hatred from someone who doesn't know the difference between socialism and communism.

    The fact that the Barenaked Ladies got their early success due to the Canadian system has nothing to with, for example, the fact that BT's "Flaming June" hit the UK top 40 twice in the space of year in the mid 90s or the fact that their early "experiment" with removing DRM from their download store was largely successful.

     

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    bigpicture, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 2:20pm

    Content

    As a consumer what am I actually paying for? Am I paying to be hooked up to the internet, or am I paying for content? I am paying for content because without that I would not want the hook-up.

    Did you not notice the ISP bundling arrangements? I don't want TV at all because it is 95% crap, (not informative, not educational, and not entertaining) but if I get a stand alone internet connection it will cost me more. Why is the internet more valuable? Because possibly up to 20% is not crap, and I can screen out the rest. So yes the ISPs are beholden to their customers and also to the content providers.

    Does the content itself have any monetary value? That is the debate, but artists like everyone else should have opportunity to EARN a good living. So the business arrangement in all of this should be that no party is exploiting any other party. Because actual recording technology is now ubiquitous, this service is no longer monetizable, (recording companies are out) but promotion, delivery and content still in some way is monetizable. It gets down to what is the best business model so that all parties in the chain who contribute can prosper in relation to their contribution.

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 2:54pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It has everything to do with it. Terry McBride grew up in a business environment that was sheltered and supported by government mandate, and if all the music sales in the world tomorrow disappeared would still mandate huge payments to this guy, his artist, and his companies.

    As for the difference between socialism and communism, well, the difference between we all share stuff and the government makes us all share stuff. Big woop.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 3:10pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Terry McBride grew up in a business environment that was sheltered and supported by government mandate

    Actually, Harold, it appears Nettwerk was founded and started in an apartment.

    http://www.artistshousemusic.org/videos/the+history+of+nettwerk+music+group

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 3:33pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    OMFG are you clueless.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 4:17pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    What? You were the one who suggested researching the history of Nettwerk. Is something wrong?

     

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    Nelson Cruz, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 4:25pm

    Re: Songs are not copyright.....?

    David, you are totally missing the point. People don't pay for emotions, but they do pay motivated by emotions. Music evokes emotions and therefore "impact what people will pay for", as Mike wrote. Let's face reality: people today don't pay for music because they have to, but because they want to (because they love the music and want to support the artists). Therefore the job of a label today is to setup the best conditions to foster positive emotions and a good relationship between fans and musicians.

    As for free music, think about this. People have been getting free music for decades. You might have heard of this amazing technology called radio. Now, labels and musicians don't complain about radio, because broadcasters pay some fees, and most of all it promotes album sales. Now there is a new "radio", that allows people not only to listen but keep the music, so album sales are down. Rather than stupidly trying to stop this and force people to keep on buying music on little plastic discs, the trick is to find out what people WILL STILL PAY FOR and use free music to promote that. Just like before.

    The previous business model of using free music on the radio and MTV to promote CD sales, isn't that much different from what Mike is proposing (and some are actually doing)! 50 years ago there where people enraged about free music on the radio, just like the internet today. But the industry ended up embracing radio and benefiting tremendously because of it. Maybe we need a similar license for music on the internet, but most of all the industry just needs to adapt again. A new balance of free vs non-free must be made.

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 4:37pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    You missed the point - it doesn't matter if it started in an apartment or in a trash bin outside. That isn't the point at all. The point is that the canadian government forces readio stations in canada to play 35% canadian content, which means a strong revenue stream for canadian artists and their management / record labels / middlemen. Nettwerk prospered under this by taking canadian artists, getting them airplay in canada (mostly this requires making the radio stations aware of a canadian artist in their niche, they need the content) and then using that income to springboard the artists into the US market.

    Without CanCon and without that dependable steam of money, nettwerk would probably still be in an apartment. Social policy in canada made the company go, and I think it somewhat warps his view of the value of music.

     

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    Nelson Cruz, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 4:50pm

    Re: Content

    Bigpicture,

    I get your point, but if ISPs pay for music, they'll have to pay everybody. I spend far more time reading techdirt and other blogs than streaming or downloading music on the internet. Doesn't techdirt deserve a cut? And I imagine Youtube gotta have several million dollars coming to them!

    Maybe ISPs should send a few cents to every site each client visits! Hmmm... actually that could be cool... maybe I should patent that idea. :D

    Of course ISPs are going to tell the content providers they wouldn't reach their audience without them, and that their content is clogging up their networks.

    If car manufacturers started demanding revenue sharing from gas stations and parking lots, no one would listen to them. The owners of those business could also rightly say that without them, the cars would be useless to consumers. Everyone plays their part! Just because some businesses make money thanks to someone else's products, does not mean they own them money!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 5:01pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Harold. I'm still lost. I fully understand the protectionist marketplace in Canada. But how does this affect what's happening today?

    Maybe CanCon helped Nettwerk in it's infancy. But what is the *current* threat you see? Are you afraid that the US will pass a law making 35% of all radio stations in the USA play Foreign Content?

     

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    Oscar, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 5:12pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Are you afraid that the US will pass a law making 35% of all radio stations in the USA play Foreign Content?

    There's 200 channels on the sat radio, and I only listen to 5 channels, and they are foreign. I'd love to see more overseas stuff. American music isn't any good.

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 14th, 2009 @ 6:14pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It's because CanCon continues on, and Nettwerk continues to profit from it grandly. Many of the artist in their roster are Canadian artists getting disproportionate airplay and income as a result. It isn't a question of talent, but rather one of place of birth / citizenship.

    It also means that Nettwerk is one of the few groups in the world with a steady stream of income away from actually selling records. This is a company that would likely profit from a shift to "no sales, just play" provided that there was a decent deal in place with youtube, webradio, and such. They can afford it, because they still have income not related to sales. They have a welfare system that means they will never go broke.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 15th, 2009 @ 2:06am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It isn't a question of talent, but rather one of place of birth / citizenship.
    Harold, you invited us to perform research on CanCon, and so we did. Under CRTC's MAPL standard, only two items need to be met for it to qualify as Canadian Content. In fact, a label could still have art qualify as "Canadian" with an American Artist. Harold, please stop stretching the truth.

    It also means that Nettwerk is one of the few groups in the world with a steady stream of income away from actually selling records.
    So maybe American Artists shouldn't have been paid so much to live such outlandish lifestyles. Perhaps that money could have been re-invested into the label to develop talent and new revenue streams away from shiny disc manufacturing. Do note, Nettwerk doesn't sell very many records. 80% of Nettwerk's sales are digital.

    This is a company that would likely profit from a shift to "no sales, just play" provided that there was a decent deal in place with youtube, webradio, and such.
    Well, at least they have some ideas and are presenting options that are more viable and robust than a revenue stream based on suing and demanding money out of people.

    They can afford it, because they still have income not related to sales. They have a welfare system that means they will never go broke.
    No, Harold. CRTC's MAPL standards affect radio and television distribution. This in turn drives digital/physical sales. I am unable to find any direct link to CanCon directly subsidizing the label or artist. But distribution over radio in turn can drive digital/physical sales, much like the Conglomerate ClearChannel can affect distribution and drive sales.

    I don't understand the doom and gloom scenarios filled with half truths you're trying to push forth.

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 15th, 2009 @ 8:04am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It's like it's right in front of your nose, but you cannot connect the dots.

    CanCon rules have long qualifications as to what is and what is no Canadian. Safe to say it's intent is to promote canadian artists and canadian productions of music (and another set of rules of similar intent applies to TV as well).

    "CRTC's MAPL standards affect radio and television distribution. This in turn drives digital/physical sales."

    This is exactly where you miss the point. Those airplane rights generated fees to the radio stations in Canada paid to SOCON and NRCC of more than 50 million in 2005, and continues to rise. That money is then paid out to artists, writers,products, etc. Because of CanCon, there are many Canadian artists who would have no chance of airplay that actually end up getting played often, just because thier music fits the format of the station and there is a shortage of the required Canadian music in that category. it creates a welfare system for Canadian artists, who are encouraged not so much to be great as to just go and fill in all the categories and collect a check.

    Without CanCon and the airplay rights, Nettwerk and their "stars" might never have gotten out of the apartment.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Mar 15th, 2009 @ 2:11pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    It's like it's right in front of your nose, but you cannot connect the dots.

    No, Harold I can connect the dots, I just don't see your point. Maybe this is because I realize is Canada is it's own Sovereign Nation and is free to legislate itself however it wishes to benefit it's citizens. Unlike the US, where businesses can lobby and protect each other.

    Perhaps you forget that there are many other labels in Canada that are also benefiting from CanCon, but you single out Nettwerk for some strange reason.

    Point is, Nettwerk saw an opportunity, took a gamble, and it paid off. In the grand scheme of things, this is how businesses get started. You seem angry about that.

     

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    Weird Harold, Mar 15th, 2009 @ 3:48pm

    I am not angry about it, I don't give a crap about him one way or the other. But asking someone who built a business on government mandated subsidies isn't exactly the best guy to ask what the next business model would be.

    CanCon was the seed money that made his business grow.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Mar 15th, 2009 @ 4:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Well, when you accuse something of being socialism or communism yet clearly have no idea what the terms really mean, it does call into question your accusations on other subjects.

    Anyway, your points still make no sense. Nettwerk is a very successful record company that happens to be based in Canada. If it's so easy to be so successful based purely on the fact that they're Canadian, why is it only Nettwerk we're talking about here and not the many other labels in that country? The answer, if you could just stop going "but... Canada! Socialism" for a moment is that there's much more to their business success than can be explained solely by the existence of the Canadian cultural system.

    They have a hugely successful artist management arm that includes many non-Canadian groups who have sold #1 albums all around the world. They have a wide roster of recorded artists, also including many non-Canadians. They are also more successful than many other Canadian labels, and have been so while doing certain things (e.g. removing DRM from their store) that many other labels - Canadian and otherwise - would have considered commercial suicide at the time.

    You can argue all you want about the Canadian system, but the simple fact is that there *has* to be more to their success than you're implying. By rejecting every aspect of their success just because you don't like the way their government runs things is disingenuous at best. At worst, you're making the exact same mistakes that the RIAA have been doing for over a decade - ignoring any new ideas on how to run their business because they didn't like who it was coming from.

    Again, I'll reiterate: I've bought many records on the Nettwerk label over the years - a great many of them before the RIAA shenanigans made me look more closely at which labels I was buying from. Few of the albums were by household names, many were not Canadian and I've never been to Canada. If the only reason for Nettwerk's success was because they're Canadian, how come I have so many more of their albums than any other Canadian label?

    Other than a vaguely acceptable notion that the Canadian system allowed them to take more risks than an American company could (though, again, why do no other Canadian labels come up in these threads), how do you explain the regular success outside of Canada of non-Canadian artists signed to that label if not by some additional business acumen?

    If you have an answer that doesn't consist of "I don't like CanCon", I'm all ears. But I suspect you don't.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35.  
    identicon
    Weird Harold, Mar 15th, 2009 @ 5:41pm

    Paul, you aren't getting my point, I must not be speaking english or something.

    Nettwerk's current success isn't the point. More power to them for it. The point is that Nettwerk got it's start and continues to profit from a slanted system in Canada that supports artists through what is effectively a welfare system. Nettwerk is the only ones getting discussed here because their President is the one quoted (DUH!). When other Canadian mangement / labels / groups make similarly odd statements, then we can talk about them.

    Keep going. Oh, btw, I'm Canadian, eh?

     

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  36.  
    identicon
    ggliddy-diddy, Mar 16th, 2009 @ 5:33am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Why can idiot Americans not tell the difference between socialism and communism, despite having a great many socialised systems themselves?"

    Well I guess it is because for many years you had the commies running around calling themselves socialists. If they don't seem to think there is a difference, why should we?

    Besides, no one said we "liked" having the socialist thieves stealing us blind.

     

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  37.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 16th, 2009 @ 8:10am

    Re: Songs are not copyright.....?

    Thanks for the input, you pig-headed narcissistic arrogant bit of afterbirth. While my job may be somewhat thankless, it is most certainly not POINTLESS, you cum-gurgling loser slut. I may not be a songwriter but I'll kick your pansy ass into next week, you insulting piece of human garbage. Go fuck yourself. And please, leave us your name so we can avoid buying any of the useless shit you "creative" cum-faced dick-lickers can come up with.

    FUCK YOURSELF, YOU PIECE OF SHIT!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    identicon
    Weird Harold, Mar 16th, 2009 @ 8:53am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Socialists want to share everything equally. Communists make you do it.

    You get more done with a smile and a gun than just a smile.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Mar 16th, 2009 @ 10:11am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Oh. It all makes sense now. Your a Conspiracy Theorist.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Mar 16th, 2009 @ 1:14pm

    Re:

    At the risk of furthering this echo chamber:

    Again, we ARE talking about their current success, or rather their success in the last few years while they have been trying the new business tactics under discussion. That is in fact the ONLY point. The history of Nettwerk in the 80s and 90s is not directly relevant, just as the prior success of the RIAA is irrelevant when discussing their current tactics.

    Yet again, you are claiming that nothing McBride has to say on the subject is relevant because of the Canadian system, as though the "socialist" system makes all in the Canadian music industry unable to speak on matters of business. I am saying that he has many interesting and well proven business ideas that have nothing to do with Canadian protectionism. The DRM-free experiment was successful. Foreign branches have been successful. Non-Canadian artists both signed to the label and to their management arm have been successful. McBride's entire business outlook seems to be fan-friendly and moving in the right direction.

    Once again, what does this success have to do with CanCon and Canadian protectionism? What do you feel that the purchases of Nettwerk goods and services from myself and my peers have to do with this, despite the fact that neither the bands nor the market we were buying in had anything to do with Canada?

    I once again await an answer that doesn't involve repeating your first point. Feel free to go into more detail if not - if nothing else, I am still intrigued as to *exactly* why you feel that, for example, British artists signed to Nettwerk owe their success in America and Australia to Canadian cultural rules. Other than the one point I have conceded - that Nettwerk may have been able to take greater risks than American counterparts (though this raises greater questions) - this makes absolutely zero sense.

     

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  41.  
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    chronoss, Mar 16th, 2009 @ 4:28pm

    OH like scalping your own tickets

    bunch a greedy buggers

     

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  42.  
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    AntiDisEstablishmentarianism, Mar 17th, 2009 @ 5:35pm

    It seems a common argument to be that artists do what they do because they 'love' it -and that should be the payment in itself.
    It hardly seems fair to use that as a qualifier for other types of industries. Writing music is a skilled process and like a full-time job musicians go through times where they love or hate the work.

    Please don't make it a crime to be paid to do what you love!!!

    I'm sure more musicians would write 24/7, IF they knew they could derive a consistent income from it. That has nothing to do with how much of a 'musician' you are. Those are realities of earning money during life.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43.  
    identicon
    Nelson Cruz, Mar 19th, 2009 @ 5:30pm

    Re:

    AntiDisEstablishmentarianism, you also totally missed the point. The fact that music is emotion has nothing to do with artists doing it for love. The point is it's emotions that make people want to buy, not copyright.

    The fact that musicians love making music is usually used as a counter-argument to "without copyright there would be no music". No one says they shouldn't be payed because they love what they do, just that they would be doing it anyway (in more or less quantity). There is an important difference there. If they can get payed for it, there is nothing wrong with that. I don't see anyone saying they should never be payed.

    But artists also don't have the right to expect to make a living doing what they like. Nobody does! If not enough people like and value what you love to do, you wont make a living out of it. Copyright or not!

    The business models that Mike talks about here on techdirt everyday I think would actually would allow more musicians to make a living doing music by reaching more people and finding more true fans that will pay for concerts, access and premium stuff. Without enough true fans no musician can make a living. And giving your music for free on the internet, exposing as many people to it, is a great way to find them.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  44.  
    identicon
    Cassie, Apr 12th, 2009 @ 7:35am

    songs

    please give me a song that has not been sung because i wont to be a popstar plz plz plz plz!!!!!!:-)

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
    identicon
    shantel, Jul 1st, 2009 @ 10:01am

    like idea

    im tring to get signed what are my steps involving paying

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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