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Permalink to this day Monday, March 04, 2002

Thanks all for sending stuff in.

Moby weighs in on all the digital hoopla as of late:

Obviously this is primarily attributable to cd burning and downloading. I'm not going to write about whether I'm pro-cd burning or anti-cd burning. In some ways I find it absurd to have an opinion about something that is far beyond my control, like whether the moon is a good or bad thing, or whether winter should be banned.
I disagree. I don't believe it's obvious but we'll let him continue.
Ok, I'll offer an opinion because I can't actually contain myself anymore...a world wherein people made music purely out of the love of music as opposed to the love of money would be FUCKING AMAZING. There, I said it.

And I leave you with Foxtrot:

FYI: I'm going to Maine tomorrow till Wednesday so you can stop hitting refresh 'cause I won't be chained to my desk. But don't worry all that time on planes will result in more rants and raves about music.
11:13:26 PM  Permalink to this item []

Labels blast Apple.

Apple blasts labels.

Eisner vs. Jobs. Who will win?

The larger industry is going to win this battle and at only $40 billion dollars it won't be the music one.
8:08:46 PM  Permalink to this item []

The Tragically Hip Live at Lee's Palace in Toronto, Ontario.

To get the show from Peter @ Live Hip I donated some money to The Hip Fan Camp Trillium Fund and so I ask that if you enjoy the show that you donate as well.

This just goes to show that not all 'pirates' are evil. And did you know that when we (in our capacity as Fairtunes founders) write a cheque to Ani Difranco it's not to Ani it's to her foundation? Yet another indication that we shouldn't lose all hope for the music business.
6:03:17 PM  Permalink to this item []

BusinessWeek: Entertainment Execs, Fear Not the Net. 'The music and movie bigwigs' antipiracy crusade misses a key point: People are tired of those industries' old ways of business'.

MSNBC: The Customer Is Always Wrong. 'Music and film moguls, and a few senators, think fans are thieves—and want to cripple technology to stop you from making copies'.

Nothing I haven't said before but then again I'm not being published in BusinessWeek :).

Oh yeah, I got the Tragically Hip's Lee's Palace show on CD today in the mail. Should be online before the end of the day (features three new songs!).

And while I'm posting let me bitch that upgrading Cygwin broke my CVS setup and I've spent too much time trying to get things working there. And the problem is only made worse by my incredibly slow connection to the Internet. It baffles me that Rogers is adding more highspeed customers when they can't service their existing ones. And why the hell are they adding a cheaper capped bandwidth service? They should offer a super premium connection. I'd pay up to $150 a month for faster Internet.

Update: Some of you think $150 is a lot. Consider this. I pay at least $100 a month for my cell phone and I only use it about 24 hrs a month. I must use the Internet at least 240 hours a month so naturally I'm willing to pay more (though not 10x more :)).
3:41:01 PM  Permalink to this item []

Information on Canada's Consultation Meetings on Digital Copyright Issues.

I registered. So should you.
12:15:22 PM  Permalink to this item []

On Friday Darryl and I headed down to the Canadian Music Week conference to catch the 'Digital Rights' panel which featured some friends of ours from Pho. Us being the seat of the pants guys we are we hadn't signed up for the conference and instead hoped that the people in charge of registration would see the wisdom of admitting too young guys to this one session (or negeotating a per-session pass for a reduced rate). Of course no one saw it the same way we did and insisted if we wanted to go to the session then we'd have to fork over $500 for a day pass. Not even our friends on the panel could scam us a pass so we sat in the lobby while the music industry missed the perfect opportunity to educate two young pirates about digital rights.

However all was not wasted since we all know that real business is conducted over lunch and drinks and we had the good fortune of eating with Walter McDonough from the Future of Music, a VP from Napster, an analyst from Jupiter, Warren from MusicMusicMusic and Darryl from Abintra.

Here is what got bounced around:

  • A Music Tax. Perhaps we should extend the AHRA tax and the Canadian tax on blank media to encompass all storage mechanisms. I have some issues with this concept in general (such as where do we draw the line?) but if there was to be a tax I'd prefer to see it on residential bandwidth.
  • Digital rights. The usual talk. After 2 years of being involved with digital music I'm still not clear on how all the various licenses interact. So my suggestion. Keep it simple.
  • Slowing Music Economy. Revenues are down and this has resulted in the labels cutting back a lot of employees, more than you'd expect given the size of the revenue decrease. The theory is that the labels were horribly over extended to begin with and are now shedding the fat. But really this is good because it will mean a lot of good folks who have now lost their job will either join or start their own companies supporting independent musicians.
  • Revolutions. What have the major revolutions been and when will the next one occur?
  • Filters. EmergentMusic is really all about people finding better music filters but the idea only works if we can gain critical mass. How do we do that?
  • The entertainment industry is failing my parents (which is the title of my next rant). Okay that wasn't really what we talked about but we did talk about how people my parents age don't feel welcome at HMW and so they're now buying their music at Future Shop and Walmart. This has huge implications.
  • Attendence is down. Every year fewer and fewer people attend CMW. Though we didn't draw any conclusions from this.

And while the CMW conference seems to do a half decent job of pulling together a wide variety of industry professionals I believe their failure to include their number one stakeholder is unforgivable and will ultimately result in the collapse of today's current entertainment industry. Yes I'm talking about the consumer/music fan.

Darryl, if I missed anything please fill me in.
11:26:45 AM  Permalink to this item []

Silicon Valley: Online book-sharing service for the blind borrows a page from Napster.
The target audience, about 5 million people nationwide, qualifies Bookshare for a copyright exemption created in 1996 to encourage greater distribution of literature to the blind and reading-impaired.

With a $1.3 million investment from a nonprofit technology organization, Benetech, Bookshare hopes to break even by next year. To do so, it will need at least 10,000 subscribers willing to pay a $25 setup fee and a $50 annual subscription to download as many books as they want., another fine example of fair use at work (take that Valenti).
11:01:17 AM  Permalink to this item [] RIM adds phone to BlackBerry. About time, and where can I get one?

You can see from a photo that it's simply the 857/957 body with an earpiece snaking off of it. I wonder how weird it will be to have a phone device that you don't actually hold up to your head?

So if it runs Java how long before I can turn my Blackberry into a webserver?

(I have an exam this morning.. )
7:55:10 AM  Permalink to this item []

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Updated: 4/11/2005; 7:09:32 PM.