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Report on the Music Industry

Uploaded by spootyhead on Mar 20, 2007

Report on the Music Industry

Despite a year of headline-generating turmoil, musicians, techies, media executives and lawmakers gathering for the second Future of Music conference on Monday will find that much remains unresolved on the digital-music landscape.
Over the past year, recording companies managed to force the shutdown of the free online song-swapping service Napster and launch services of their own. But they also saw new threats sprout up hydra-like in the form of second-generation free services such as Kazaa and Morpheus.

Recording artists won a battle with the industry when they secured the right to be paid directly for Internet-based broadcasts. But they still wield little control over the music they create, advocates say.

Tech firms launched a steady stream of digital-music devices and services but saw funding for new ventures dry up in the face of lawsuits and a weakened economy. And players on all sides won the attention of Capitol Hill, only to see the Sept. 11 terror attacks wipe digital-music issues off the congressional agenda.

"It's really changed very little, which is unfortunate, because I think change would be very productive," said Eric Schierer, a digital-music analyst with Forrester Research.

On their own

Despite the presence of Capitol Hill players and music-industry heavyweights, the tone of Monday's conference is expected to be distinctly anti-establishment.

Conference organizer Jenny Toomey, an activist and musician with the punk band Tsunami, hopes to shine the spotlight on independent artists who retain control of their music. Panelists will include musician/entrepreneurs such as Ian Mackaye of Fugazi and Dave Fagin of the Rosenbergs, who have found success outside usual music-industry pathways.

Napster CEO Konrad Hilbers is scheduled to speak as well.

But although the buzz on and off the dais will likely focus on the recording industry's recent moves, 2001 may be remembered as the year the industry finally caught up with the digital revolution that has swept up so many music fans.

The industry won a key court battle with Napster, forcing the hugely popular song-swapping service to remove all copyrighted songs from its system. Napster, which shut down in July, is expected to test a new, industry-sanctioned service this week.

Recording companies also launched their own digital music services last month, MusicNet and Pressplay, which offer limited access to some music...

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Uploaded by:   spootyhead

Date:   03/20/2007

Category:   Industry Reports

Length:   4 pages (891 words)

Views:   3777

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