Barenaked Ladies use ingenuity instead of lawyers to outfox Napster users.
September 24, 2000 2:42 PM   Subscribe

Barenaked Ladies use ingenuity instead of lawyers to outfox Napster users. Singer Steven Page can be heard in one download telling users: "Although you thought you were downloading our new single, what you actually were downloading is an advertisement for our new album." In retrospect, it's so clever, it's obvious. We're all smacking our heads thinking, "Why didn't I think of that?" Appropriating the Napster system to recoup valuable advertising targeted to those who actually like the band is so elegant in its simplicity, and everyone but the would-be copier is satisfied. (Until they BUY the album)
posted by mikewas (8 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
Ooops - forgot to give credit to chrisH for the link.
posted by mikewas at 2:43 PM on September 24, 2000


Even more interesting is how this demonstrates the self healing aspect of the Napster network. I saw this story a couple of days ago, and tried to find a copy of the modified mp3. But you try and do a search for Pinch Me on napster... notice all those versions of the song which include "without advertising" in the title? The people who downloaded the modified version either deleted it immediately or tagged it specially, so other people won't make the same mistake. So the number of modified copies is probably not significantly higher than the original number that BNL put into the system themselves.
posted by smackfu at 3:25 PM on September 24, 2000


Actually the new versions are direct rips from the CD itself.
posted by riffola at 8:49 PM on September 24, 2000


That's why Napster has chat access, to blacklist the asswipes who keep poisoning the well. The cutesy made-for-mtv BNL are really pushing it, heres to hoping for a metallica-like backlash.
posted by skallas at 11:50 PM on September 24, 2000


There were some non-ad versions when this came out well before the CD was released. I imagine people just edited out the commentary because they didn't actually cut any of the song, they just spliced in some spoken stuff.

Anyway, I think BNL was just having fun with the whole thing. They knew their whole album would be available within hours of its release. They even said in the Pinch Me "ad" that once it was released you could download anything you wanted, but until then, this was what you got.
posted by daveadams at 7:33 AM on September 25, 2000


The B.N.L. have always been fairly innovative and forward-thinking in marketing themselves. Now, I would think that putting the ad in the middle of the song would piss off a few people, but at the beginning, I would think it merely serves as a reminder that hey, someone actually made this.

All of the above is 100% speculation. But I could see that being their mindset, and yeah, I'd probably do something similar if I were them. And if I was smart enough to think of it. (Lot of ifs there.)
posted by chicobangs at 8:18 AM on September 25, 2000


You know, a lot of other bands could pick up on this, doing pre-releases of their wares with ads plugged in the middle... "teasers". Sure they'd get blacklisted, but damn, what a great publicity stunt!

And then there's this thought.. what if [for instance], BNL does this enough, and it ticks off the Napster crowd, who will get sick of downloading BNL anything because it might be a ad stamped version? Well, napsterites would just stop downloading BNL all together, maybe. Or any other band that does it on a regular basis.

I'm no expert, but looks like BNL might be on to something there, eh? Nobody likes to get beat at their own game, by somebody playing by the rules...
posted by pattiann at 12:28 PM on September 25, 2000


Just because they are on MTV doesn't mean they are made for Mtv. Just because a bunch of 15 yr old girls like them, doesn't make them "uncool." I particularly don't like them, but I see so many people dissing on bands based on their fan base, instead of the music itself, which is just pathetic. You should read up on some BNL history before you talk shit. You might be suprised.
posted by Satapher at 2:48 PM on September 25, 2000


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