World Is Catching On That Creativity And Creative Jobs Have Been Growing, Not Disappearing, Post-Napster

from the the-sky-is-rising dept

A few years back, we did a deep dive into the actual numbers for how the entertainment industry had been faring in the post-Napster era, and found that, contrary to the doom and gloom stories the legacy entertainment industry has been stating, the sky was rising, not falling. Since then, we've continued to release updated versions of our Sky is Rising reports, which continue to show the same basic thing: more creative output than ever before in history, more people creating content than ever before in history, more people making money as content creators than ever before in history and more money being spent on content than ever before in history. In other words, the whole idea that the internet and file sharing somehow killed the entertainment industry is complete bunk.

It appears that people are finally starting to notice.

Steven Johnson, who has written some fantastic books over the years (and built a few startups) has a thorough and detailed piece in this weekend's NY Times magazine, basically making the exact same point that we made in our Sky is Rising reports, going through a lot of the same data. He calls it "The Creative Apocalypse that Wasn't (which is perhaps more catchy than our title). The short version: things are really, really good for creative content. He starts with musicians:
What do these data sets have to tell us about musicians in particular? According to the O.E.S., in 1999 there were nearly 53,000 Americans who considered their primary occupation to be that of a musician, a music director or a composer; in 2014, more than 60,000 people were employed writing, singing or playing music. That’s a rise of 15 percent, compared with overall job-­market growth during that period of about 6 percent. The number of self-­employed musicians grew at an even faster rate: There were 45 percent more independent musicians in 2014 than in 2001. (Self-­employed writers, by contrast, grew by 20 percent over that period.)

Of course, Baudelaire would have filed his tax forms as self-­employed, too; that doesn’t mean he wasn’t also destitute. Could the surge in musicians be accompanied by a parallel expansion in the number of broke musicians? The income data suggests that this just isn’t true. According to the O.E.S., songwriters and music directors saw their average income rise by nearly 60 percent since 1999. The census version of the story, which includes self-­employed musicians, is less stellar: In 2012, musical groups and artists reported only 25 percent more in revenue than they did in 2002, which is basically treading water when you factor in inflation. And yet collectively, the figures seem to suggest that music, the creative field that has been most threatened by technological change, has become more profitable in the post-­Napster era — not for the music industry, of course, but for musicians themselves. Somehow the turbulence of the last 15 years seems to have created an economy in which more people than ever are writing and performing songs for a living.
And, as we saw in our report, it's not just in music that this is happening.
The O.E.S. numbers show that writers and actors each saw their income increase by about 50 percent, well above the national average. According to the Association of American Publishers, total revenues in the fiction and nonfiction book industry were up 17 percent from 2008 to 2014, following the introduction of the Kindle in late 2007. Global television revenues have been projected to grow by 24 percent from 2012 to 2017. For actors and directors and screenwriters, the explosion of long-form television narratives has created a huge number of job opportunities. (Economic Modeling Specialists International reports that the number of self-­employed actors has grown by 45 percent since 2001.) If you were a television actor looking for work on a multiseason drama or comedy in 2001, there were only a handful of potential employers: the big four networks and HBO and Showtime. Today there are Netflix, Amazon, AMC, Syfy, FX and many others.
Ah, but some will respond, all this new content is mostly crap. Well, there have been some attempts to look into that as well, which found the opposite. The flood of content has actually created more absolute great content (and, yes, more crappy content with it, but it's easy to ignore). In other words, more content across the spectrum, catering to more tastes. Johnson's research found something similar. He points out that basically everyone agrees that TV is better now than in the past, so there's little argument there. And he presents some evidence of great new films, though they're often financed through different and independent means, rather than the big Hollywood studios.

How about books? The one thing that he finds is that the data there is mixed, but he finds it noteworthy that while big chain bookstores have been falling by the wayside, indie bookstores are thriving.
This would be even more troubling if independent bookstores — traditional champions of the literary novel and thoughtful nonfiction — were on life support. But contrary to all expectations, these stores have been thriving. After hitting a low in 2007, decimated not only by the Internet but also by the rise of big-box chains like Borders and Barnes & Noble, indie bookstores have been growing at a steady clip, with their number up 35 percent (from 1,651 in 2009 to 2,227 in 2015); by many reports, 2014 was their most financially successful year in recent memory. Indie bookstores account for only about 10 percent of overall book sales, but they have a vastly disproportionate impact on the sale of the creative midlist books that are so vital to the health of the culture.
Johnson concludes the piece by looking at why this has happened, and why the fear mongering and doom and gloom of the RIAAs, MPAAs, Authors Guilds of the world, and the politicians who often repeat their talking points, were all completely wrong. He points out that while content may now be easier for users to access, that also means people get exposed to a lot more -- and there are many new ways to pay for it as well.

Also, perhaps more importantly, without the need to hand over so much money to gatekeepers (who like to take pretty much everything), the ability to go direct, and leverage various platforms, means that even if a particular artist is grossing less revenue, they're keeping more. And, further, as the tools of production have gotten cheaper, the upfront capital costs of creating, promoting and distributing content has dropped massively.

It's a worthwhile read, though it won't be surprising if you've read our reports. However, hopefully, with this appearing in the NY Times, it means this concept is finally going mainstream.

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  • identicon
    Baron von Robber, 21 Aug 2015 @ 9:39am

    I feel a disturbance in the force, as if a million A&R reps cried out in horror.

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    • icon
      tqk (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:05am

      Re:

      I feel a disturbance in the force, as if a million A&R reps cried out in horror.

      We didn't even need to spend millions bribing politicians for it to happen either. So, who is it really who's robbing artists, authors, musicians, and other real creators? Could it be rightsholders and middlemen?

      If this's even reaching the NY Times, perhaps boycotting the MafiAA will even gain traction, and these will be the final days of the dinosaurs again. Next stop, patents and copyright reform?

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  • identicon
    Michael, 21 Aug 2015 @ 9:45am

    You should sue them for copyright infringement for stealing your idea.

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 9:53am

    "that the internet and file sharing somehow killed the entertainment industry is complete bunk." -- That's YOUR bunk! IF PIRACY NOT DEFEATED, WOULD/WILL!

    You're simply conflating "internet" and "file sharing" to make a strawman for yet another ineffectual rant while the protections copyright provides creators is more firmly entrenched than ever!

    Piracy has been beaten to pretty much standstill. Where are your "file lockers" now that dare to openly boast of infringed content? -- Where your smartass Pirate Bay founders now that they're out of JAIL? IsoHunt? Rojadirect? -- WHERE IS NAPSTER NOW, HUH? It's only a Wikipedia entry noting was first big "file sharing" to be taken down, of an unbroken string of legal victories for those who make products over those who steal.

    I guess that's enough for this strawman. Would have been quicker except had to finish eating and coffee, and perhaps now jam it through your attempts at censoring. Anyway, next strawman, please, this one just fell apart.

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

    • icon
      jupiterkansas (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 10:09am

      Re: "that the internet and file sharing somehow killed the entertainment industry is complete bunk." -- That's YOUR bunk! IF PIRACY NOT DEFEATED, WOULD/WILL!

      Everything you rant about is still there and easy to find - just with a different name. Except Pirate Bay, which is still going strong.

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

      • identicon
        Baron von Robber, 21 Aug 2015 @ 10:34am

        Re: Re: "that the internet and file sharing somehow killed the entertainment industry is complete bunk." -- That's YOUR bunk! IF PIRACY NOT DEFEATED, WOULD/WILL!

        I thought ISOhunt was still up too?

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 10:31am

      Re: Bafflegab

      Definitely trolling as an art. Barely coherent rant (on a good day) posted on an article about copyright/Google/piracy or sometimes not even related to those subjects, followed by an exit and no follow up. All to get the LULZ from those trying to debate with him/her. I don't understand the mindset that results in someone obsessing over such trolling day in and day out for years. I'm suspecting a smidgen of OCD.

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      • icon
        tqk (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:13am

        Re: Re: Bafflegab

        I'm suspecting a smidgen of OCD.

        Nah, this is obviously Mike himself posting clickbait to make money for his masters at Google! He's not fooling me! I'm not falling for it!!!

        :-)

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    • icon
      Gwiz (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 10:37am

      Re:

      Piracy has been beaten to pretty much standstill.

      No, I don't think it really has. It's simply moving to less centralized areas. Do a search on Btdigg.org and you can see for yourself what the swarm is sharing these days.


      Rojadirect?

      Do you mean Rojadirecta? That site seems to be up and running just fine. I guess you don't remember that the US government gave up on that case and had to return the domain names.

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      • identicon
        A Non-Mouse, 21 Aug 2015 @ 12:33pm

        Re: Re:

        Piracy has been beaten to pretty much standstill.

        No, I don't think it really has. It's simply moving to less centralized areas. Do a search on Btdigg.org and you can see for yourself what the swarm is sharing these days.


        Or just do a search on The Pirate Bay because, you know, IT'S STILL THERE!

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:02am

      Re: "that the internet and file sharing somehow killed the entertainment industry is complete bunk." -- That's YOUR bunk! IF PIRACY NOT DEFEATED, WOULD/WILL!

      How does anyone even make enough sense out of your indecipherable spew to pick it apart?

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:25am

      Re:

      Your projecting so hard that airplanes could use you for a landing beacon at night.

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

    • icon
      Ninja (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:26am

      Re: "that the internet and file sharing somehow killed the entertainment industry is complete bunk." -- That's YOUR bunk! IF PIRACY NOT DEFEATED, WOULD/WILL!

      Piracy has been beaten to pretty much standstill.

      Hmmm... Last I checked (yesterday) it was pretty mundane and easy to engage into. I myself downloaded a copy of a program that my original media was lost in time and space (my room). And while not the real best option it was The Pirate Bay who helped me.

      WHERE IS NAPSTER NOW, HUH? It's only a Wikipedia entry noting was first big "file sharing" to be taken down, of an unbroken string of legal victories for those who make products over those who steal.

      It was replaced by other alternatives till bittorrent took over and you simply can't take down anything from the torrent cloud. Win?

      Anyway, next strawman, please, this one just fell apart.

      Man, you are beating the atoms that are left from your own, overbeaten strawman...

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    • icon
      tqk (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:30am

      Who's afraid of the big, bad wolf?

      You're simply conflating "internet" and "file sharing" ...

      Of course you're right. The only thing you can possibly do with the Internet is "file sharing." Yuk, yuk, yuk. You're funny.
      Piracy has been beaten to pretty much standstill. Where are your "file lockers" now that dare to openly boast of infringed content?

      Playing whack-a-mole with rightsholders' ridiculously expensive and horrendously ineffectual lawyers who've convinced rightsholders they can fix this for them, and watching Rightscorp pour millions of wasted dollars through the cracks in the floor, getting pennies on the dollars spent back. Those dollars could have been going to artists themselves had they not been suckered into shitty deals with the labels.
      Would have been quicker except had to finish eating and coffee ...

      Would've preferred if you'd starve yourself to death instead, or die screaming in a fire! However, whatever floats your boat ...

      Boycott MafiAA! :-)

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  • identicon
    Pixelation, 21 Aug 2015 @ 9:56am

    Green with envy

    My guess is the entertainment industry is most upset that they can't control (siphon money from) much of the content on the net any longer.

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  • icon
    Julian (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 10:10am

    I'm reminded again of Bruce Sterling's comments about musicians.

    "Whatever happens to musicians will eventually happen to everybody."

    http://www.well.com/conf/inkwell.vue/topics/459/State-of-the-World-2013-Bruce-St-page02.h tml#post38

    I don't have the stats to back it up, but my perception is that the "Long Tail" has been skewed. The short head is shorter. Fewer big stars are making less money. The top end of the fat middle is doing a bit better. There's a rise in the number of people just about able to do music and have no proper job. They're not getting wealthy but they're surviving. The bottom end of the fat middle and the long tail is more numerous than ever but basically making no money. There are more people making music than ever before but the vast majority of them are doing it as a hobby that generates a little pocket money or a free festival ticket and that's it. Total all of that together and the music GDP has probably increased. But the internal spread has changed. The Biz only ever made money from the short head and that's not doing as well as it used to.

    As for me, I hardly spend money on music at all. I spend it on overpriced alcohol at music events.

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    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:55am

      Re:

      There are more people making music than ever before but the vast majority of them are doing it as a hobby that generates a little pocket money or a free festival ticket and that's it.

      Hasn't that pretty much always been the case though? A small handful make the overwhelming majority, while the rest make pocket-change at best?

      Pretty sure throughout history that's basically been the norm, with only a handful of really successful musicians being able to make a career out of it, it's just with the new tools available, while the 'super-stars' may be taking a hit due to competition, the number of people able to make a decent amount(maybe not living-wages level, but certainly better than the none they could get before) has grown significantly.

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    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:20am

    Oh look, another techie cherry picking numbers to try and justify the actions of his SillyCon Valley pals. Snore.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:29am

      Response to: Anonymous Coward on Aug 21st, 2015 @ 11:20am

      Oh look another out of work musician, bitter that he never made it and has to blame everyone except himself.

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    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:48am

      Re:

      If you think the numbers are bogus, by all means, provide more 'accurate' ones from an unbiased source.

      (Really, don't you lot have any better strategies than 'Shoot the messenger when you can't refute the message'? It may be a 'classic', but that doesn't mean it actually works, or isn't blindingly obvious to those that see it.)

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

    • icon
      Mike Masnick (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 5:02pm

      Re:

      Oh look, another techie cherry picking numbers to try and justify the actions of his SillyCon Valley pals. Snore.


      If you can provide numbers that prove this wrong, wouldn't that solve that issue?

      Oh, you can't? Snore.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 5:36pm

        Re: Re:

        "Technology Apologist Complex: Steven Johnson Strikes Again"
        It's a garbage article. And you know it.

        https://medium.com/@jonathantaplin/technology-apologist-complex-eafcf14df530

        "The Data Journalism that Wasn't"
        http://www.futureofmusic.org/blog/2015/08/21/data-journalism-wasnt

        "Steven Johnson and a Thesis that Isn't"
        http://illusionofmore.com/steven-johnson-thesis-isnt/

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        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 7:44pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          Snore. I heard Paul Duffy is keeping a nice warm seat for you.

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        • icon
          Mike Masnick (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 8:27pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          I'm looking for the numbers in those and all I see are people who don't like what the numbers actually say

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 22 Aug 2015 @ 4:32am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            From people who KNOW what the music business is. What do you know of the music business Mike? Other than as a casual observer.

            My money's on sweet FA.

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            • icon
              Mike Masnick (profile), 22 Aug 2015 @ 6:19am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              From people who KNOW what the music business is. What do you know of the music business Mike? Other than as a casual observer.

              My money's on sweet FA.


              I know a good deal about the music business, since I talk to plenty of people in it all the time, but that's besides the point. This isn't about knowing "the music business" it's about numbers and statistics.

              And neither Taplin, nor Newhoff, have a single number in their posts. Just weird ad hom attacks.

              The FMC post, at least, has some more relevant critiques of the methodologies where the numbers come from, and I accept those as more valid. But they fail to provide any alternatives as well. Given all the numbers we've seen over time (beyond just what Johnson has), I've yet to see a single dataset that suggests there are few people creating today, and making money from it, than in the past.

              If you have those numbers, I'd like to see them.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 22 Aug 2015 @ 12:01pm

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

                Nah, the cited articles demolish both Johnson and his cherry picked numbers.

                You know all about cherry picking statistics, don't you? lol

                The Techdirt Clown Car just keeps on keepin on.

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                • icon
                  Mike Masnick (profile), 22 Aug 2015 @ 2:41pm

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

                  "Demolish"? They throw ad homs and they don't cite a single opposing number.

                  I think the FMC article has some valid points, but the other two? I mean, those are kind of embarrassing, since all they can do is insult people. Taplin especially. Weird. You'd think someone like him would actually have some data to back up his attacks. But, nothing.

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 22 Aug 2015 @ 6:34pm

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

                    I don't think that using the name of the person you are writing about and describing what they did is an ad hom. It seems, though, that is is the preferred method of yours to dismiss your critics (whose numbers seem to be growing). You've used it a few times just in the last couple of days

                    What the Future of Music Coalition seem to be saying is that the numbers don't exist. They also seem to have been involved in the writing of the story.

                    A read through the other two and all I see is that Jonathan Taplin calls him a logroller, which given his history seems apt.

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                    • identicon
                      Anonymous Coward, 22 Aug 2015 @ 11:42pm

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

                      http://www.forbes.com/sites/zackomalleygreenburg/2014/12/10/the-worlds-highest-paid-musicians-of-201 4/

                      Here it says that Dr Dre was the highest earning musician of 2014, trouble is the money came not from music but from the sale of Beats to Apple. That would be $620 million of music income in Johnsons figures.

                      I would assume that the likes of taylor swift's and pharell's shoes, brittney's perfume and iron maiden's wine are all exaggerating the figures too.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 23 Aug 2015 @ 12:09am

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

                        Reading Johnsons article, the only hard figures he gives for music are that live music increased revenue by $20 billion while sales of CD's fell by $45 billion. So while he's saying that things are peachy for musicians his actual figures have a $25 billion drop in revenue over the period.

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                        • identicon
                          Anonymous Coward, 23 Aug 2015 @ 1:14am

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

                          Those figures are useless for deciding whether musicians incomes are up or down because they ignore all the other sources of income, like MP3 sales, royalties from streaming and even income from Youtube advertising. You may as well use vinyl sales to show how badly musicians are doing, as they now provide almost no income at all.

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                          • identicon
                            Anonymous Coward, 23 Aug 2015 @ 1:41am

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

                            That's the point. Mike's calling for figures to show that Johnson is wrong. These are Johnson's only financial figures for music, and they don't back him up at all and, as you say, are useless.

                            You don't need figures to prove him wrong when his own don't prove him right.

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                            • icon
                              Mike Masnick (profile), 23 Aug 2015 @ 6:00am

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

                              That's the point. Mike's calling for figures to show that Johnson is wrong. These are Johnson's only financial figures for music, and they don't back him up at all and, as you say, are useless.

                              The figures I was discussing was the number of people who are making their living as creators. And I said I wanted proof that the overall numbers were declining, not just that Johnson was off. We have lots more numbers in our reports.

                              Your side presents... nothing other than a few failed creators whining.

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                              • identicon
                                Anonymous Coward, 23 Aug 2015 @ 2:03pm

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

                                Your own report seems to have the same sort of figures with the exception that you seem to think that a massive increase in the Gracenote database equals a surge in creativity. In 2001, your first date, iTunes was at version 1 and had Gracenote incorporation, since then I've entered data for about 200 CD's myself (mostly small indie releases from New Zealand by artists who didn't know about Gracenote at the time), though I haven't had to enter anything for quite a while. Very few of these CD's were new releases, most were old discs I was digitising.

                                One thing that you should look into for your next report is the change in business model for live venues that has accompanied the increase in live revenue. Many venues (and anecdotally in LA -most) now have a Pay-to-Play policy. Bands actually pay to play, and get a cut of any income over their "deposit". In the small New Zealand town were I live the only venue in town -set up by a local international touring artist - charges $500 to play there. The median national income is $863. so for those on a low income (most musicians) this is more than a weeks wages. The town has a population of only 19 500, and an average wage below the national average, so even getting 50 people to pay $10 is a challenge.
                                Another, less popular, system is getting the band to presell a quantity of tickets.
                                So as live revenue increases venues are inventing new ways to cream this money off the musicians.

                                Less anecdotally here are some real world figures from a festival performance by Sinead O'connor that show that what would go on the books as $47 700 euro, became $500 euro for the artist who ultimately was never paid.
                                http://www.news.com.au/entertainment/music/sinead-oconnor-flips-out-over-her-latest-pay-slip/st ory-e6frfn29-1227488221902

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                                • identicon
                                  Anonymous Coward, 23 Aug 2015 @ 2:17pm

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

                                  https://musicindustryblog.wordpress.com/2014/06/04/the-great-music-industry-power-shift/

                                  Says...

                                  Much of the market growth didn’t make it down to artists: The live music value chain is an incredibly complex one with multiple stakeholders taking their share (ticketing, secondary ticketing, venues, booking agents, promoters, tax, expenses etc.). The share of live revenue that artists make from live has declined every year since 2000. The impact on the total market is that total artist income (i.e. from all revenue sources) has declined every year too since 2009.

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                                  • identicon
                                    Anonymous Coward, 23 Aug 2015 @ 2:23pm

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

                                    One thing of note in your report is that, in the music section, you've done nice shiny graphs but only if the line goes upward, where you have figures that show a decline the graph is missing. Why would that be?

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                                  • icon
                                    Mike Masnick (profile), 23 Aug 2015 @ 10:03pm

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

                                    Much of the market growth didn’t make it down to artists: The live music value chain is an incredibly complex one with multiple stakeholders taking their share (ticketing, secondary ticketing, venues, booking agents, promoters, tax, expenses etc.). The share of live revenue that artists make from live has declined every year since 2000. The impact on the total market is that total artist income (i.e. from all revenue sources) has declined every year too since 2009.

                                    Yeah, live is a tricky business to track, and no one has particularly good numbers. It's a challenge, no doubt. Pollstar is the one that everyone goes to, but really only covers the big concerts. We tried to work with others, like Songkick, to get smaller venue data, but the data is quite limited. And, no doubt, touring is a very difficult way to make money.

                                    While Johnson points to touring, we only mention it in passing, because we think other business models appear to be working much better for many artists, including direct to fan (Bandcamp), crowdfunding (Kickstarter, Patreon) and other things as well.

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                                • icon
                                  Mike Masnick (profile), 23 Aug 2015 @ 9:59pm

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

                                  Your own report seems to have the same sort of figures with the exception that you seem to think that a massive increase in the Gracenote database equals a surge in creativity. In 2001, your first date, iTunes was at version 1 and had Gracenote incorporation, since then I've entered data for about 200 CD's myself (mostly small indie releases from New Zealand by artists who didn't know about Gracenote at the time), though I haven't had to enter anything for quite a while. Very few of these CD's were new releases, most were old discs I was digitising.

                                  Did you read the report? We actually note this limitation to the data: "Now, that growth of the Gracenote database obviously includes a lot of older music that has only recently been indexed, so its expanding index doesn't exactly serve as the ideal proxy for the increasing rate of production of new music." We did present plenty of other evidence to show that there is a ton of new music, including the data from TuneCore.

                                  So it's weird for you to suggest that we only relied on Gracenote. We did not, and directly indicated the limitation you pointed out.

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                                  • identicon
                                    Anonymous Coward, 23 Aug 2015 @ 11:35pm

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

                                    Where does it say that? The one I read (the latest, of course) says...

                                    " It’s never been simple to estimate how many songs are being produced each year, but the Gracenote database (which indexes commercial music metadata) continues to expand. For several years Gracenote had added about 10 million music tracks to its database each year, but for the last couple years, the rate is accelerating. In 2001, Gracenote had 11 million tracks in its database, and by 2011, it had 100 million. In 2013, Gracenote’s database grew to 180 million tracks."

                                    Just growth, no caveats, no old songs.

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

                                    • icon
                                      Mike Masnick (profile), 24 Aug 2015 @ 12:17am

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

                                      In the first report:

                                      https://www.techdirt.com/skyisrising/

                                      The quote you have, in the most recent report, is designed to focus on the changes from 2011 to 2013. By 2011, certainly, it was no longer mostly about "catching up" on old missing tracks. Yet, it still went from 100 million to 180 million in just two years. Even if a bunch of that was missing tracks, a ton of it was new tracks.

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

                                      • identicon
                                        Anonymous Coward, 24 Aug 2015 @ 12:15pm

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

                                        Why would I read the first report when there is a newer one?
                                        And why is the new one using creative facts without the caveat?

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

  • icon
    Derek Kerton (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 11:44am

    I Think There's More

    I don't know the model the Steven Johnson at the Times used, but it's very possible he missed out on a big part of the revenues by artists, specifically, merchandise.

    "And yet collectively, the figures seem to suggest that music, the creative field that has been most threatened by technological change, has become more profitable in the post-­Napster era"

    Is he just counting "music sales"?

    It is very likely that other revenues, like merch sales, are often categorized as something other than "making money from music". In fact, the Masnicator has been saying for years that music has a marginal cost of zero, thus a correct marginal revenue of zero and price of zero, therefore musicians should endeavor to make money of associated scarce products. It just so happens that it works, but still much of that revenue would NOT get categorized as music revenue, despite the fact that it still ends up in the pocketbooks of musicians -- and probably a bigger cut than if it had to be filtered through the toolbooth called RIAA.

    (Oops, did I type toolbooth instead of tollbooth? Well, I'm not correcting it, since it's not incorrect.)

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

    • icon
      tqk (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 12:41pm

      Re: I Think There's More

      ... the Masnicator ...

      Youch! Poor Mike. We have a new meme. :-P
      Oops, did I type toolbooth instead of tollbooth?

      You've caught Uriel-238's Freudian Slip virus! $DEITY help us. Someone call the CDC!

      "The Masnicator." Gahd. I'm going to have to go watch "The Rise Of The Nazi Party" now to try to get that out of my head.

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

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 2:03pm

        Re: Re: I Think There's More

        ..."The Masnicator." Gahd. I'm going to have to go watch "The Rise Of The Nazi Party" now to try to get that out of my head...


        Wait until Thanksgiving and everybody starts showing "The Master Baster"!

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

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 12:21pm

    "Creativity not done under label/studio/publisher control doesn't count"

    More is being created than ever before, but less and less of it is being created under the control of the parasitic middle-men. That's really what they're throwing a fit over.

    It's not that creativity has been decimated, which clearly isn't the case, it's that people are finding out that the parasites aren't quite as indispensable as they pretended to be, and are routing around them, leaving the leeches in the dust, scrambling for whatever source of income, or attempt at regaining control they can manage.

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

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 1:02pm

    there is no need to tell us or try to convince us. the ones who desperately need that are the various organisations, politicians and courts. the USA politicians have done so much damage to the whole concept of advancement in the way music, movies, software, games and books could be made available to the public, not just in the USA but worldwide! they failed drastically in the job to 'promote...the arts' by helping an industry retain it's stranglehold on the future, preventing the advancement in the way music and movies especially could be improved and distributed, with no penalties for mis-use of DRM and the DMCA, making punishments traverse from civil to criminal again, just to please those in the industries who had gone through the revolving door of government to private industry head, while making the public who were keen to use the new discovered means of doing things pay so severely, sometimes with their lives, when those people were also members represented by those same politicians, but didn't have the thousands of dollars to throw at the politicians to get what they wanted into law. when this became spread worldwide, with websites being shut down, websites seized, people fined hundreds of thousands of dollars for doing very little, which had an almost negative effect on the industries in question, then get prison sentences as further punishments was outrageous! this, remember, is for copying something, not stealing, not removing the original, not even replacing the original with something else, but copying it! something that is very quickly discarded is that without the ability to copy or to sell in a second hand market, the world would not have many of the treasures that exist and many of the inventions would never have been made, making our progress as a species far lower than it has been.

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

  • icon
    Max (profile), 21 Aug 2015 @ 2:07pm

    Huh?!?

    "...basically everyone agrees that TV is better now than in the past..."
    No idea who all those everybody else are, but I definitely disagree (and that's a serious understatement). So I guess it's not "everyone" after all.

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

    • identicon
      Anonymous Anonymous Coward, 21 Aug 2015 @ 6:20pm

      Re: Huh?!?

      There are a couple of ongoing programs that I regularly watched and recorded. At the start of the most recent season, there were so many commercial breaks that it appeared that the writers could not even complete a thought in the time allowed. I removed the cable box from the system and endure watching my collection of reruns. I won't even consider torrenting this years batch of crap.

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

    • icon
      nasch (profile), 24 Aug 2015 @ 7:28am

      Re: Huh?!?

      No idea who all those everybody else are, but I definitely disagree (and that's a serious understatement).

      You probably have to include the offerings from Netflix, Amazon, Hulu, and the premium cable channels to get all the best TV. If you're just looking at broadcast and basic cable, you might not see a lot of quality stuff (though I don't follow TV shows all that much so take this with a grain of salt).

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


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