[sdiy] The RIAA Blows.... (fwd)

Batz Goodfortune batzman at all-electric.com
Mon Jun 24 08:32:43 CEST 2002

Y-ellow Lava n all.

At 09:13 PM 6/23/02 -0700, Moho Disco wrote:

>Not sure I get what you mean Batz - I wanted to put my music up on SomaFM
>(they had an active advert on their site inviting artists to send in their
>work), and now that they are shut down I can't do it.  I wasn't demanding
>any royalties at all for playing my music (which is what it appears you
>might be thinking).  Please explain...

Not at all. Quite the opposite. I can't offer a solution to your current 
problem with a radio station/internet broadcaster/whatever but the thought 
crossed my mind that if they've already closed down then there must be 
something more to it than a rumor of the pending end of the universe. 
There's a lot of shonky stuff going down out there and my only advice is, 
"Don't trust anyone. Not even me." (especially not me.) I haven't exactly 
made millions from the music industry. I'm not a bread head but I know 
this, if you wanna make money from the music industry and you're not a 
major player, set yourself up as a music equipment retailer. If you're good 
at it you can make 200% on each sale and the customer will still think 
they're getting a bargain. If you wanna know where the money is in the 
music industry it's in retail. Because every new up and coming Jimmy 
Hendrix wannabe has to buy their gear somewhere.

What I AM suggesting is that at the very least, as an independent, you can 
turn on a dime. You can navigate through shallow waters that a Major 
behemoth wouldn't even go near for fear of being grounded. Don't look at 
what the Majors are doing, look at what they're not doing. When the Sex 
Pistols were starting out Mclaren had them playing in strip clubs. I don't 
know if he actually knew this instinctively but in a strip club, there's no 
competition. Although the punters weren't there to hear the music, they 
were big fish in a small pond.

By allowing broadcasters to do the one thing with your music they are not 
allowed to with any of the majors, you make your product somewhat more 
attractive to them. There must be a G'zillion broadcasters out there who've 
suddenly realized they're under siege and there's no Steven Segal in sight. 
Make a big thing of it. Make a joke of your contract. Rip shit into the 
RIAA. The broadcaster might be so impressed with it's content that they 
read it on air and then encourage others to do the same. And if you can 
reach critical mass, and the Majors have cut their throats already.... Well 
you get the idea.

>Interesting idea for sure...

I've always done this as a matter of course. If you put your wares on 
MP3.COM you do it by default. Now you can make a joke of it and blame it on 
the RIAA and point out that they're responsible for killing the music in 
the first place. Not only is it a contract it's a mission statement. Whatever.

And if the RIAA want to claim that they can take a cut for your music, 
point out that it's YOUR music and you are NOT a member of the RIAA and 
that they DO NOT represent you and they ARE not entitled to YOUR MONEY. If 
anyone's entitled to a royalty it's you but since you're not asking money 
then the RIAA, I'm sure would be guilty of some kind of extortion.

Now if there were thousands of people doing that, what's the RIAA going to 
do? Fight a thousand court battles? And yet collectively you can all take 
out a class action against the RIAA. You probably only need to point that 
out to them at that point.

If the RIAA does by chance manage to pay enough tame congress-persons to 
push their legislation through, and then someone finds a work-around 
solution the next day, (and they will) it's all over.

But I repeat. I doubt very much if it'll come to that. This is just the act 
of a group of overgrown school bullies throwing their weight around. What 
they really want is Digital Rights Management and the rest is just a smoke 
screen. Years ago I held a big party. During the night, the cops rolled up 
at the front gate. A mate of mine, Dave, saw them and turned the music up 
really loud. Then he went and talked to the cops. The cops told him to turn 
the music down so he turned it back to where it was and the cops were 
satisfied and left. The RIAA only want a DRM scheme, that's scary enough 
but they're trying to make the solution look really scary because they know 
the courts will water it down. And hopefully (they think) they'll water it 
down to what they wanted in the first place. The really scary thing is that 
Microsoft is opposed to it.  M$, a big advocate of DRM being opposed to it? 
I wonder what's up their sleeve this time?

Be absolutely Icebox.

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