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  • Sep 27th, 2012 @ 5:18am


    Interesting times. First Google breaks the Internet and crushes free speech by downgrading pirate search results, now Mikey's shining example of DIY can't do it himself -and the major labels and studios continue to deliver the overwhelming % of content. What has the world come to? Time for techie's to alter their world view? Backtracking becomes you.

  • Jul 3rd, 2012 @ 5:14pm

    (untitled comment)

    "But things have changed. With the barriers gone, anyone can get on the playing field". Funny how things have changed. I just looked at the top 10 songs on the Bittorrent charts and, surprise, surprise, they are all from major labels or "indies" distributed by them. The same was true of the You Tube most viewed music videos. Yes, I'm counting Adele's XL as a major because they have all the infrastructure of a major, huge a$$ets, world wide marketing and distribution.
    I'll buy into this blather about a level playing field when even 1/2 of the top p2p charts are from true indies. Have a nice 4th. Let's all declare independence from group-think.

  • May 2nd, 2012 @ 3:36pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Question

    You write code, good for you. I assume you're compensated, that the code is proprietary? Maybe you should give it away for exposure, get fans, facebook friends, make a living that way.
    The brave new world is a lot like the old one, only now the lords and masters are big search, the ISP's (who are coming around slowly since they now own content), advertisers, payment processors. Funny how little has changed as far as who actually creates the music and films that drive the traffic. Tastes haven't changed, everyone still wants great content from major labels and studios, they just don't want to have to pay the cost of creating it. If I'm a dinosaur, I'll lumber off the tar pit. But as long as my songs are everywhere is Cyberspace, making $ for everyone but me, I'll bellow now and then. Thanks for the exchange, no one's mind was changed I'll bet. Off to the studio.

  • May 2nd, 2012 @ 2:49pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Question

    Mark Gorton from Limewire--worth about 100 million, before he lost it all in his court case. Kim.com. again, worth untold millions. Creeps cloaked in fake idealism who's only innovation was to find a way to give away copyrighted material and keep all the $ for themselves. I'm no apologist for the labels, but wake up. Every corporation plays hardball with their contract labor. Create something of value, record or write a hit and you can re-write your deal points and you'll get a fair deal. I've seen it done countless times. My major spent a ridiculous amount of $ on my crappy record many years ago and I walked away from it, free and clear. I'm now a songwriter, my deals are with publishers and our $, what little is left of it, is determined by the copyright royalty board. My songs are everywhere--7 of the top 10 sites when I google any of them are infringing--making $ for everyone but me. Big tech and their data mining operations own the world now, we content creators are the canaries. You're next.

  • May 2nd, 2012 @ 2:29pm

    Re: Re: Question

    Thanks for you long and thoughtful post. I was in a classic DIY band for many years, had lots of fans, make our own records, sold T shirts, toured like crazy, even got a deal on a hated major label for a milisecond--and went broke. See, it turns out that I was not a great artist, but I was a pretty good songwriter. At that point I bet it all on article 1, sec 8 of the constitution, and the hope that if I created something of value, I would be compensated. The music biz I inhabit is made up of people, lots of former DIY guys, behind the scenes with unique talents, developed over years of hard work. who's time is far better spent doing what they do best, programming, engineering, writing, not amassing facebook friends or stapling flyers to telephone poles. They are the people who create the 99% of content I referred to, and they're getting run out of their lifelong livelihoods not because they don't create great, highly valued music, --they do--but because their income stream is now diverted into the pockets of infringers and their enablers.

  • May 2nd, 2012 @ 2:13pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Question

    Labels "take most of the earnings." The infringing sites take all of the earnings. You cool with that? The $ paid to the songwriter is determined by the copyright royalty board, not the labels. It aint a great deal, but it's how I make my living, along with radio play. If no one is making $ from my songs, I'll pack it in. But they are, everywhere, all the time and I don't get jack.
    If an artist doesn't want to sign with a label, they shouldn't. If they want to give their stuff away, they should. It's their choice, but they shouldn't demand that it's my choice also.

  • May 2nd, 2012 @ 2:03pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Question

    I can't believe this analogy is still being posted.
    Well, when the automobile came along, it was a new product that made the old one obsolete. Illegal p2p is not a new product, it's a new means of distribution. It still makes $ from the same product---my song--but diverts the income stream into someone else's pocket. Those who invested their time and $--that would be me-- into making that song get nada.

  • May 2nd, 2012 @ 12:48pm


    I'm a songwriter. Just wondering how I, and all the other behind the scenes types who create the content that drives 99% of p2p traffic, get paid? We don't gig (been there, done that), sell CD's or T shirts, we license music to those who do.
    Just checked today's top 10 search results for mp3raid, where my songs are always found, making $ for everybody w every click-everybody but me of course.
    Interesting that all are either from a major label, or an "indie" financed and distributed by a major. Bet the same is true for most p2p'd movies. If the labels and studios are so hated, why, in 2012, are they still responsible for the creations everybody, especially p2p'rs wants?

  • Mar 10th, 2012 @ 11:44am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Let me take it, frame by frame it:

    How did Kim.com make his mega-millions?, Limewire, Grokster, Pirate Bay? Money was paid, either directly or thru ad revenue, to them to access content and none of that $ went to anyone in the chain who created it. The music biz is down 50% in ten years- that's a fact, and in my little corner of it, the # of songwriters is down by at least 2/3. Yeah I feel it in my gut, + my (and my friends) bank accounts, and I see/live it everyday in real time. Of course I'm a marginal, a washout. Whatever suits your ideology. Attack the messenger. Why would you want to actually have a sane conversation with someone who makes their living by the circle c, someone who might actually know how the music biz really works and how big tech has had a free ride on our backs. Don't take my word for it. Follow the money if you have the intellectual curiosity, which I doubt.

  • Mar 10th, 2012 @ 11:31am

    Re: Re: Re: Let me take it, frame by frame it:

    Well, you've changed my mind. I'm totally wrong. I can now disregard the gutting of the music business by 50% in 10 yrs- which I've witnessed first hand-as a figment of my imagination. I shall hereafter bow down to the Ayatollahs of Silicon Valley.
    I will also disregard this expose of Google's biz model, 'set up ad programs for criminals of all stripes, feign innocent bystander status, go to the bank'.
    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/technology/2011/08/google-to-pay-500-million-to-doj-for-ille gal-drug-ads-sales-in-us.html

  • Mar 10th, 2012 @ 5:14am

    Re: Re: Re: Let me take it, frame by frame it:

    Sure, there's lots of pap and crap, probably 80-90%, from the majors, same -or higher -for the indies since the bar for entry there is so low--80% of my own songs are mediocre in spite of my best efforts, but I've got to write through them to get to the good stuff that makes my, and the pirates, living. There is more money in music, movies, etc than there has ever been, but it's being siphoned off by entities who, unlike labels and studios, bear none of the cost of creating them. Keep looking for examples of label underhandedness--you'll always find them--and ignoring the same from the big tech crooks. Just don't pretend you're doing it for my benefit.
    Thanks for the scolding gentlemen, I'm off to the studio.

  • Mar 9th, 2012 @ 9:26pm

    Re: Let me take it, frame by frame it:

    Two examples of artists who made it with Creative Commons (sounds like you've been a good little CC drone). Good for them. It's their choice, as it should be. We have a constitutional 'exclusive right' to our writings--oh yeah, except for when we don't. My songs are on illegal sites by the millions, with everyone in the chain making $ from them --except me.
    I don't have to scour the news for #'s, examples, I've seen it, lived it, watched friends and colleagues go under-- but no one here cares to actually acknowledge that I know what I'm talking about, that I really am ripped off by pirates and their pals- and fellow profiteers- in big tech. You have to demonize and diminish me. Have at it. I know what I'm getting into when I post here. I tell you what. Let's have this conversation when 95%+ of all p2p's movies and songs are no longer from the major labels and studios. Don't hold your breath.

  • Mar 9th, 2012 @ 7:12pm


    As a long time pro songwriter, I'm aware of this and any # of other ways my $ are skimmed. The game is rigged, kind of like most contract labor deals, but if you have some success, you can re-write your deal points and make up the dif. Now, how about an article about how pirates sites and their enablers make mega-millions from music and share 0% with writers, artists or anyone else who devoted their life to making it.
    Surely techdirt wouldn't scour the news looking only for evidence of major label (and major studio mis-steps), then gleefully re-print them as justification for the decade long free ride big tech has had on the backs of professional creators. Selective outrage? Surely not.

  • Nov 27th, 2011 @ 3:30pm

    (untitled comment)

    As always, the old "Follow the Money" rules works pretty well here. The overwhelming majority of the lobbying against SOPA is being funded by those who profit, either directly or tangentially, from infringement. They can outspend the music and movie industry 10 to 1 in this battle and not blink. (Any one here notice Google's $500,000,000 settlement with the Justice Dept. this fall which exposed their business model with crystal clarity? I didn't think so.) The problem is, all the above arguments have been made in Congress for years (and enhanced with huge campaign contributions) and they still haven't won the day. Why? Maybe it's because so many on the 'copyleft' see this as ideological Armageddon and overlook the fact that Copyright is enshrined in the Constitution, (not Google's right to profit from infringement), and the Constitution wins more often than not. By big tech crying wolf and throwing everything they've got at any attempt to enforce Copyright Law, they have diluted their message and power.
    You may now commence attacking me. No, I'm not a troll, I'm a professional songwriter, come to my town and I'll show you the effects of 10 years of illegal P2P. Then let's take a tour of Silicon Valley to see where the $ went.