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Microsoft study says CD (music) anti-copying measures doomed
"computer technology evolving too quickly"
Robert Charlton

 7:06 am on Nov 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

Story here. [abc.net.au]

According to Microsoft's researchers computer technology is evolving too quickly for the music business to keep up.

The research team thinks there is only one way to beat the file sharers - by competing on their terms, making music cheap and easy to buy.

I'm posting another story on MS software profits here [webmasterworld.com]... The MS study didn't comment about software profits. Releasing buggy software is probably not a bad anti-piracy strategy... you've got to register to get it to work. ;)



 7:07 am on Nov 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

The research team thinks there is only one way to beat the file sharers - by competing on their terms, making music cheap and easy to buy.

took them LOOOOONG time to figure it out!


 8:02 am on Nov 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

So the criminals have won right?

Maybe I have missed something but i read a lot about how how file sharing has made music cheap, but yet it is still illegal and stealing is it not? Just becuase you can murder people, or break into houses and steal things doesent make is legal yes?

Basically those who download copyrighted music are theives. The only things they pay for are maybe internet fees and the media they store it on. The artist does not get paid; neither does the publisher, recording, advertising and other professionals.

And while I am no friend of the big publishing companies, I also dont belive in stealing. Just because you CAN do something, does not make it legal. Publishers have made obscene profits for years, and nothing else has forced them to reduce their profit margins. So there is a good side maybe. However I contend that the illegal copying debate fuelled by the publishers and the file sharing companies, is obfuscating the broader and more important issue.

When you download and copy a copyrighted work from the Internet without permission (any form - music, book, film etc) you are bypassing paying the producer, artist, and the whole industry.

If the artists and recording professionals and those who risk money on them are not being paid, the industry is headed for oblivion,

even though I see a major restructuring as more likely...

Music publishers are like any publisher.. the Internet always had the potential to wreak havoc with their distribution network, which worked well for them before the internet and they locked it up and guarded strongly.they made heady profits. Now people can distribute their own books and own music on the internet, and charge for them, - bypassing the publisher's old boy distributor monopolies.

To me the key issue is the changes to the methods of distribution - that is really what is hurting publishers though they wont admit it, and they are talking all the time of illegal copying to obfuscate their real challenge which is their distribution network is lost, and that dosent take illegal copiers or thieves to do it.


 1:43 am on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

In a free and democratic society, society eventually determines what is considered norm and legal, not the supreme court. So appreciate it, if people stop calling us criminals.

Society has determined that it is alright to download and share music. The record cartel has robbed the public and the record artists for years.

Rather than working with Napster and finding a way to work together, the record companies crushed Napster. They figured they could legislate, P2P file sharing away.

If their was a mechanism where I could buy any music from any artist, and have the artist get the royalties, I would gladly pay for my music.

And im not talking about a limited selection from a small group of artists, or music that expires in 14 or 30 days.

I consider the music I download to listen to on my computer, the same as turning on the radio. Perhaps we can have a small charge added to our ISP bill each month, to cover downloaded music.

The record companies have written there own death warrant by trying to stamp out a new industry.

Digital killed the record Cartel - 'Sing to the same words as video killed the radio star'


 3:20 am on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

They'll never stop it through the use of technology, but every attempt will be made through legislation. People will be going to jail/getting fined for a song. The law is what the people in power say it is; in this case, the record companies.

Prices of CDs and related media have spiraled upward for some time now. Sometimes ya gotta spend 20 bucks on a CD to get one song. That's crazy, maybe criminal depending on the factors that bring it about.

If it was not for disruptive technologies like this, prices would continue to spiral upward, out of the reach of most people. Consumers are not demanding free music. Most reasonable people would be happy to pay, say $0.50 to download a song and put together a custom CD for 5-10 bucks. Some studies have shown that a downloaded (stolen, depending on your POV) song can be the trigger needed to prompt a purchase.

There is a workable compromise point in the middle that maintains a fair chunk of revenue for the record industry and reasonable prices for consumers. Set a fair price and make it easy to buy. It makes a lot more sense to do that instead of passing crazy laws that have the potential to land someone in jail for a song.


 3:44 am on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

"passing crazy laws that have the potential to land someone in jail for a song"

No need to. Copying of copyrighted material (music, images or print and books or others) has been an offence for years. The laws have already been passed years ago. When recordable audio tapes hit the markets many decades ago, there were the same concerns. They rarely get enforced as audio magnetic taping was hardly worth the trouble. But not until digital methods has copying meant that the copy loses nothing in quality in the process, and is realtively easy. Its just that now, illegal copying does present a substantial threat to record company profits.

lgn says...

"In a free and democratic society, society eventually determines what is considered norm and legal, not the supreme court. So appreciate it, if people stop calling us criminals."

Lets call a spade a spade - people who illegally copy songs ARE criminals if we are to believe our legal systems. That's a fact.

The legal system, "in a free and democratic society" is meant to reflect societies norms. Its very sensible that artists and those who promote and enable them, have to be protected from those who benefit from their work without paying for it. Otherwise there would be no commercial music industry. It protects both consumers and the providers. The issue of profiting by record companies is separate, but this is just the free market right? Basically any commercial company would charge as much as the consumer is willing to pay. That's the free market. That principle pays most of us our salaries.

I agree with some of what has been said in this thread. I cant see any reason why an association of dedicated individuals and artists cannot use the Internet to distribute their work on the Internet for a more reasonable cost than the recording industry does with its monopolized distribution networks (record stores etc).

However even that will not work while there are still people who think that they can break the law and obtain illegal copies, no matter the price, and give some vague limp justification why they should not be called criminals when they, in fact, are...


 3:58 am on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

the simple fact is that music IS being damaged by file sharing

I'm not talking about the music business...I'm not talking about the individual artists...because obviously the pirates don't care a damn about the people whose creative efforts they steal...but what they are doing slowly is degrading the quality of the music itself...the big commercial pap acts are still fine...the mass produced dross for the radio has no problem...and the very largest acts and the very smallest and newest aren't affected...but in betweem huge numbers of artists are losing the chance to record or being forced to work quicker or on worse equipment...CDs are being made more shoddily even by quite reputable record companies

fine...if you can't handle paying for music then it looks like nobody can stop it being stolen...but for chrissake lets not hear any moralising about how it's somehow not theft or a blow against big business...it is morally and legally wrong and there is a genuine negative affect on other people


 4:46 am on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

Moral judgements aside, there is a market demand for music files in a form other than the CD that must be purchased from a record store or online. The net, MP3, and file swapping have been around for years. It's about time the industry takes some steps to sell consumers what they want the way they want to buy it.


 5:30 am on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

If you want to stop people from sharing, just shut down the internet.


Read the Cluetrain Manifesto!
#7 Hyperlinks subvert hierarchy.
Artists don't need the RIAA. Take out the RIAA's percentage and what do you have?


Artists getting paid with no beurocratic BS
#72 We like this new marketplace much better. In fact, we are creating it.


 5:50 am on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

"If you want to stop people from sharing, just shut down the internet."

Yep.. and burn books and CD's as well.

There is no way you can block completely illegal copying, and the internet is so far the biggest challenge.

But i think you are misinterpreting the main message of the cluetrain...

Empowering the individual yes, Changing the existing heirachies and power structures yes.. but it must be done without subverting the laws that society better than anarchy. Change the norms, change the system - fine.

In the end how are artists going to make a living if they dont get paid. Let's develop cost-sffective forms of distribution which bypass traditional networks, but as I said earlier, stealing work does not help either the traditional publishers, nor the new ones.

There is a difference between changing power structures and plain selfish exploitation.


 6:03 am on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

Let's develop cost-sffective forms of distribution which bypass traditional networks, but as I said earlier, stealing work does not help either the traditional publishers, nor the new ones.


Without a driving force, what would bring about change in this arena, why would the distribution network change? File sharing has proven to be that driving force.


 6:58 am on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

Original story in BBC speak here [news.bbc.co.uk].


 12:35 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

Lets call a spade a spade - people who illegally copy songs ARE criminals if we are to believe our legal systems. That's a fact.

And in 1853 the US supreme court upheld the slavery law. And there are plenty of examples of
where, looking back on history, the US supreme court has been wrong. We will look back on this
in 20 years, and laugh at how the Record companies tried to block this technology.

What needs to be done, is to realize that people are going to download music. The chance that a private citizen will be charged fined or jailed for downloading music for personal use will be effectively nil.

We need a mechanism so that artists can be paid for their music, via ISP charges, taxes on MP3 players or CD artist tax or something.

What Im saying is the record companies will be dead soon, if they do not change their tune and start providing what the customer wants.


 1:04 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

And if you're an end user and you think you'll never get into any trouble have a read of this tale of unfortunate Danish file-sharers: [theregister.co.uk...]

Seriously though- record companies have been scamming us and artists for years. If it takes a threat like this to bring CD prices down to a sane level then I'm all for it. They'll be forced to compete and cut down on the 700% profit margin.


 1:12 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

Chiyo you seem to be missing something, this is not new in anyway shape or form, remember those little back things called cassette tapes, now you're not telling me you never recorded anything of an LP or the radio are you! havent we all been there before some years ago!


 1:22 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)



Nowhere have i argued it's new. In fact most of my argument here is based on the fact that it is not! See my first posts here where I refer to cassette tapes. And of course before that there were photocopiers.. The only thing that has changed is the medium and the formats. The principle is still the same.

"now you're not telling me you never recorded anything of an LP or the radio are you!"

Nope. I didnt tell you that I have never downloaded copyrighted MP3's too :) Its pretty boring on a dial up.! However my own personal behaviour is not realted to my argument. What I queried was why downloading copyright material is seem to be "accepted" as something quite acceptable when it is in fact an illegal act.

i have sympathy for the earlier post on the fact that something being law does not make it right. there are no absolutes as we know, and society makes the laws. What is legal in one country (or even state) can be illegal in another. Laws can be changed not only be the normal leglislative process but also by civil disobedience as we saw during the civil rights era in the US.

But i really doubt that the great majority of people downloading copies of music are motivated by any sort of social political conscience. I guess they just want free music easily without having to pay for it. That is basically why no popular method of distributing works of art and copyrighted material and charging for it securely has arisen to really challenge the third party distributor networks of traditional publishers. This act of civil disobedience and illegality (copying music) is primarily selfish and therefore actually plays into the hands of the publishers. If nobody pays for the product the good guys (artists, dedicated recording industry professionals) suffer as much as the bad guys!

[edited by: chiyo at 1:40 pm (utc) on Nov. 26, 2002]


 1:32 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

>unfortunate Danish file-sharers

You can say that again. I actually came here to post that story, but you beat it to me edit_g ;)

The Anti Piracy Group is not charging all the "culprits" the same amount though. Some of the larger coorporations/organisations involved will see high amounts - private people (alledgelly not aware of the legislation) will only be charged like $25.
In the news this morning some of them claimed:
"We didn't know it was illegal to provide those files - we though they couldn't find us"

Well they did.


 1:35 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

Not my favorite person, but well spoken:
"Piracy is the act of stealing an artist's work without any intention of paying for it. I'm not talking about Napster-type software. I'm talking about major-label recording contracts."
-Courtney Love

Allowing file sharing is what will put the money back into the hands of the people who deserve it. By stopping the flow of information you are encouraging a closed society. Let the people be heard--not just the chosen people.


 1:45 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

chiyo you say "Basically those who download copyrighted music are theives." I just feel that's pretty well err.......you are legally correct of course, but put it in perspective. The only thing P2P will change in the long run will be power shifts in the music industry. The likes of SONY may see their dominance shifting to a new P2P corporate giant probably backed by Microsoft. So enjoy the ride while it lasts unless of course you are a publisher or a CD peddler. :)

I also still find it hard to belive that jobs in the record industry are being shed by the hatful and labels arent selling records even though they might cry from the highest roof top they are. I'll gladly admit to being wrong if someone knows of any links ie EMI units sales over the last 5 years, but I bet my last dollar that unit sales are still growing exponentially.

[edited by: indigojo at 1:51 pm (utc) on Nov. 26, 2002]


 1:46 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

"By stopping the flow of information you are encouraging a closed society"

The key is to not so much to stop the flow of information, but to get people to pay for it. For if the creatives and producers are not recompensed for their work, almost all will stop doing it. We all have to eat. That will be just as quick a way to stop the "flow of information".

Information is not free. It takes resources to create it. Who pays?


 1:50 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)


Yep, I'm a publisher. So i have self interest.

So are many webmasters here who use original content in their websites. All of us know that original content does not grow on trees, and we expect a return for it.


 2:00 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

Yes chiyo I am familiar with original content, we provide rather a lot of it for free and no it does'nt grow on trees. We are happy that people print, email, reference, store our content we just don't want them making it out to be there own, this is very different. And there are ways to earn revenue from good content without charging to see it or in this case listen to it.


 2:08 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

When did technology become an excuse to steal?

Technology is available to tap into your bank account, last time I checked they called it theft and prosecuted.

Automobiles are a great piece of technology, but that didn't legalize bank robbery just because there was a wonderful new "get away" vehicle.

Oh Yeah man....Power to the people! : until they steal YOUR stuff.

BTW, the same folks who are operating the "file sharing" networks are in cahoots with content thieves...just ask affiliate operators about scumware.


 2:11 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

indigo.. OK then bad example! I guess with your original content it is not your actual revenue earner, but a way to promote and draw attention to your revenue earners. So its a promotion expense maybe and you get ROI through sales of your revenue earneing products? For artists themselves, its the key revenue earner. They cannot use it as a loss leader - at one stage they have to convince someone to part with money for it. From the little I know of the economics of the music industry, concert tours, videos, promotional items are either loss leaders or investments in promotion for actual CD/Record sales - that is where revenue has its ultimate gig.


 2:25 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

For if the creatives and producers are not recompensed for their work, almost all will stop doing it.

I disagree. I believe it is more likely that creatives and producers will have less of a financial obstacle because the RIAA and MPAA won't be getting their cut. And if the big guys stop doing it, do you really think NOBODY will produce and create anymore?

Verily, I say unto you, when the money changers are out of business, the creaters and producers will be in business more than ever.


 2:28 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

Yes, I think we should target all "big, bad" industries that we don't "like" and develop technology to steal from them.

yikes...what a ruse.


 2:42 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

didn't the recording industry start up their own "download sites" where they provided some downloads for free and charged for others? I belive they failed but didnt follow the saga closely.

From memory the business models were not thought-through properly and were basically a knee-jerk and maybe PR reaction to file sharers. Their portfolio was miniscule compared to all the illegal MP3's residing in a mass distributed network of servers worldwide. I think they also made people wade through advertising and spins as well. In the end they could argue, that they tried and failed and that legal distribution of music online was impossible.

It was a spin.

I think in reality it's the prospect of file transfer/Web systems than CAN distribute material for free ( more or less ) at the same time as charging a fee for the actual product that *really* scares the Judas Priest outta recording companies.

They wont admit it.

They would be much happier to keep attention focused on the free/illegal copying issue than focused on developing a substantive on-line alternative to their real-world closely-guarded distribution networks, where their real profit margins reside.


 3:43 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

I would love to see a cost analysis that illustrates exactly who I'm stealing from when I download say an NSync song. I would guess it would look something like this:

75% Pure Profit lost to the record label
10% loss to promoters who invest $5 million to tell me what I should listen to
8% loss to the manufacturer (the one who burns the CD that I don't need because I can put it on my hard drive).
5% to the Printer who makes the insert for the CD
2% to the director
1% to the artist

I know the above is not right. Anybody have a good breakdown?


 3:58 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

Now we're in trouble:

Judge backs case against Kazaa

This will be great fun...


 4:01 pm on Nov 26, 2002 (gmt 0)

I can't beleive people here can justify that downloading music for free is ok. Then I guess using p2p to get software, dvd rips, books is fine to. Hell anything that can be converted to digital media and shared should be ok. Is that what everyone thinks?

Sure people love downloading these things because it is easy and saves money but I beleive that laws should be working to protect people who produce intellectual property. The music industry has started their own pay for music downloading but who is going to pay for the music when it is even easier to have it free?

Don't bash the record labels, the artists need someone to help them record, distribute and promote their music. Most musicians dream of getting signed to a major record label. These labels get a good cut of popular selling cds because they loose money on bands that don't make it. The Courtney Love quote is irrelevant because she was in a court battle with her label at the time, when she refused to honour her contract.

This 76 message thread spans 3 pages: 76 ( [1] 2 3 > >
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