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Culture

by Mike Masnick


Filed Under:
emusic, musicians

Companies:
emusic



eMusic: Prices Went Up, But Artists Aren't Seeing Any Of That Cash

from the it-all-goes-to-Sony? dept

You may recall quite a lot of attention paid last summer to eMusic's decision to raise prices at the exact same time that it added its first major label music (from Sony Music) to its service. This, understandably, pissed off a lot of people. Many people used eMusic because it focused on indie artists rather than the majors, and to find out that their prices were being jacked up to accommodate a major just didn't seem right. Of course, eMusic tried to claim that this was a "good thing" and also (har har) that the price increase had nothing to do with Sony. Even if true, announcing the two together was obviously a mistake. Of course, eMusic kept making things worse and worse by censoring critics (and then lying about doing so) while also quietly taking away features without letting people know. The whole thing was a mess.

Of course, if eMusic is charging more, you might think that at least the musicians who use the service are getting paid more. Think again. Musicians on eMusic are upset to discover that despite the price increase, they're still making the same amount. So now, not only has eMusic pissed off its users, but also musicians as well. At least Sony Music is happy.

This is really too bad. eMusic was a leader in offering DRM-free music, as well as a major supporter of independent music early on. It also had a reputation for being consumer-friendly and accessible to both customers and musicians. I guess all that is going out the window, though.

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  1. icon
    KevinJ (profile), 8 Jan 2010 @ 6:10am

    Re: Give it a break Mike

    "* Well no, they aren't articles, it's a personal blog with pretensions of being a genuine news outlet."

    This has been said previously on many occasions. Techdirt is not a news outlet, and has never claimed to be. I recall previous posts from Mike that clearly say that he is not reporting news, but that he is giving us his opinion on topics.

    "Did you even read the original article in it's entirety? It's pretty clear that the money isn't going to Sony."

    I did read the original article, and I have to say that there is money going to Sony Music. How else do you think eMusic was able to license Sony's music library? With kind words? Maybe candy? A one-time payment that gives them permanent access to the Sony Music library? Without knowing any of the particulars of the deal, I'd bet that Sony would insist on continuing payments to keep the Sony library available.

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