Wowie Zowie!
July 11, 2000 8:09 AM   Subscribe

Wowie Zowie! This is just getting more and more fun all the time. I was reading this actually which led me to quite a revealing essay by Matt Johnson of The the. The the have joined the fight against big corporate music moguls downsizing and monopolizing the financial rewards of artists and performers. "Vivendi have just swallowed Seagrams who took over PolyGram and merged it with Universal who had bought Interscope who'd purchased nothing Records (home to Nine Inch Nails, Marilyn Manson and TheThe)...' Now here's a guy who sees the writing on the wall, and doesn't like it.
posted by ZachsMind (3 comments total)
As a veteran fm music radio broadcaster, I see the mp3/napster copyright issue through my career perspective. Some record industry types are very ok people, promoting good music they love. Many others are in it for the $$$, the "product" and how many stations "added" the record this week. A few don't even listen to the songs!

The RIAA people are to be commended for filing suit in the first place. Their actions are making this headline material. Litigation by Metallica applies the exclamation mark! The weasels are using the only tools they know: denial and court injunctions.

Consumers, music lovers (remember them?) are using the brains they have. CD prices are too f***ng costly. "The CD prices will come down as soon as we build enough CD manufacturing plants" promises of the past have NEVER materialized.

Technology is faster than Superman, politicians and record weasels. They could "go along to get along," but then they'd probably have to stop being such greedy bastards.

Oh, and I'll start listening to the RIAA tune when they've certified that EVERY artist due royalties, GETS paid; when musicians have a health and retirement plan; when all the living rhythm and blues men and women are paid fairly for their life's inspirations that others can have a good time; when the secretary or little guy is assured a job and not a threat at the hands of The Corporation.
posted by goodhelp at 8:51 AM on July 11, 2000

At present, corporations want all artists to be solely on a contractual basis, which has been how it's been handled until now. Medical benefits? Overtime? Retirement plan? You'd be lucky to get royalties.

That's why SAG is on strike over commercials. (that still going on by the way? Funny haven't read much about it recently). Musicians are treated worse than actors. However, it's not just the outrageous prices for CDs and concert tickets. It's about making informed consumer choices, and having control over where and when one can listen on a 'try before you buy' basis. Mp3 technology puts the listener in the catbird seat.

This isn't stealing. It's like being able to drive the car around the lot before you plop down your life savings. It's like walking around inside the house before signing the lease with the realtor.

Up until now if you went to buy an album, you had scant memories of what you heard on the radio coupled with ads and what your friends recommended and then you picked up a thin disc wrapped in a multicolored sleeve, but then you'd take it home after buying it and maybe two or three tracks worked for you and the other stuff, which you hadn't even heard before you buy it, gave you mixed reactions. Was it worth the money? sometimes. sometimes not. I pick up my fruit before I buy it. I don't buy a whole bucket of apples just to take them home and find out the ones on the bottom are rotten. Mp3 technology allows us to do that with music.

It's change, which disturbs many people. However, this is the next logical step. It puts the power of consumerism back into the hands of the consumer.
posted by ZachsMind at 9:23 AM on July 11, 2000

I totally agree Zach.

I have been saying for a long time that the business model for entertinment is completely worthless to the consumer. How many times have you plunked down $8 (I live in LA/OC) for a movie before seeing it? I have far too often.

The current entertainment model doesn't allow me to shape the industry at all by how I spend my money. If I could pay for the films that I enjoy, then it would send a clearer picture to the studios of what movies should be made.

If everyone who disliked [insert CrapMovie here] didn't pay for it after viewing, do you really think we would see more movies like it?

Probably, but studios would have to seriously amend their process, and start paying more attention to its consumer base.

With the current model, all they need to do is get the butts to the theatre. It really doesn't matter if the movie is good. The popular movies enjoy longevity in the theatres, which only means more money. It still doesn't account for quality.

So the film industry continues to make movies with mass appeal. Not necessarily good movies. Just popular ones.

Now, I do realize - it's just entertainment. Who really cares about quality?

Well, I do. I like being entertained, and I enjoy a bad movie or a comedy just as much as anyone does. But I rarely see those movies in the theatre, unless I'm with friends. Then its for social reasons.

Maybe I'm also overly sensitive to it, because I do theatre (stage). I'm a director, and I ask myself what the audience is going to like. I make my decisions based off of that. I may not cater to everyone all the time, but I am far more aware of it.

Why? Because people would rather spend their money watching a so-so hollywood movie that they've seen an intriguing preview for, than to go see a piece of theatre which they know nothing of. Let alone where to find the theatre.

I'm much more choosy with how I spend my entertainment dollar now. That means that I see fewer movies. It also means I keep my signal-to-noise ratio at a happy point. I mean, I *do* watch MTV. :)
posted by dgallo at 9:21 AM on July 12, 2000

« Older Chop Chop!!!   |   The end of view source? Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments