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Speaker: Copyright Must Change

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  • robbery,

    they've had a variable pricing structure for about six months now.

    Yes, but you understand my point.
    in all new releases for one week they didn't all cost the same to make. allowing for discounting for promotional effect the prices don't vary. same with retail, its $24.95, $29.95, $34.95 or import.
    They're pretty standardised units, and mostly no one bucks the trend.

    Where as project costs vary greatly.

    A reasonable one hit wonder can also cover costs pretty quickly.

    you're calling how bizarre a reasonable one hit wonder?
    If I called it pretty exceptional its still a massive understatement by nz standards.

    truth is you have to not just be a hit but absolutely out of the ball park to kick into the territory needed to cover the rest of the project, which is why the artists strive for the album model.

    What are the top 5 singles that have done as well from nz kicking it internationally?.

    don't dream its over
    How bizarre

    new zealand • Since May 2007 • 1882 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Rob, I'd imagine Scribe and Savage could be added to that list.

    But you miss the point, which is that OMC covered all costs out of NZ and Australasian sales....not the out of the ballpark stuff you mention. Lots of other records have made good money just from local income. Off the top of my head I can think of a dozen or more from recent history that have more than covered costs from the various returns from a single. And many more that have blown the single profits by making an album.

    Many acts should never have been forced to make an album, but the system required it, because the it needs those returns from album sales to cover the financial structure of record labels, much of which is increasingly redundant in the digital age.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3280 posts Report Reply

  • Steve Barnes,

    So, Copyright Must Change has reached 106 pages. Has it changed yet?

    Peria • Since Dec 2006 • 5521 posts Report Reply

  • Yamis,

    It must have.

    Since Nov 2006 • 903 posts Report Reply

  • robbery,

    But you miss the point,

    or you miss mine, which I'll restate for you, and I think you're even making this point yourself.
    your reflex action to argue against every word I say seems to have kicked in. i've got an excuse for wasting time arguing on the internet (its too friggin cold to go outside, but you live in paradise)

    i'm saying lets not get too excited about the singles music model. its very hard, one might say exceptionally to cover the costs of a total project from the sale of one song, not impossible as your excellent example of one of the best selling singles nz has ever produced demonstrates, but you really must agree that these are exceptions.

    Off the top of my head I can think of a dozen or more from recent history that have more than covered costs from the various returns from a single.

    wow, a whole dozen, out of the many thousand music projects in recent history. That's hardly the foundation for a sustainable industry.

    I'm not sure what your point is.
    Are you arguing that the music industry moving over to a track at a time model is a much more stable way of operating and that everyone is doing it?

    Many acts should never have been forced to make an album, but the system required it, because the it needs those returns from album sales to cover the financial structure of record labels,

    nice dig at the evil label again but its a bit short sighted.
    it wasn't the record label that needed to be sustained, its the whole process of making music. you could take the label out of the picture and you'd still have similar issues.
    To make those one hit cherry picked wonders you have to make a lot of muffins. You must know this yourself. some times the hit single doesn't reveal itself till after the lot has been recorded. some songs transfer well to recorded medium, some don't, some shine brighter than they ever did live. It's the way of the process and you must know this from your involvement with bands.
    The big single shines through, great, sales, wonderful, bills to pay, yep, every single one of those tracks that didn't make the journey to hit single have to be paid for. it's a project expense. it would be nice to weed out the chaff and only do the hits but it simply doesn't work that way. I'm sure you know this.
    The album concept didn't come about because some evil label thought it would be a good way to cover their cocaine parties, it came about and continues till today because the manufacturing cost of making a one song disc is the same as making a a full album. people are only willing to pay a certain amount for one song. lets say $5. if it costs you $3 to make that single and the shop takes $2.25 to sell it then you make -.0.25.
    If its an album then you sell it for $17 (or $12.85 if you have a distributor) and keep the $14 (or $9.85). Economies of scale. 5th form economics.
    you're going to troop out that well worn cliche that you only like one song on an album and that's cos you like talentless happy accident bands who produce hits like monkeys writing Shakespeare on typewriters (I kid, you'e too much of a music addict to be that shallow), but by my argument the cost of producing that one song isn't the cost of buying one single, its the cost of the project, which no ones going to pay for one song so they get fed an album instead to make the pill easier to swallow.
    Luckily I like mostly bands that fill 60 mins with ease so I very rarely feel ripped off with the album concept.

    Economies of scale aside for manufacturing there are still economies of scale operating for producing hits, even for promotion them.

    Now yes, downloads have changed the manufacturing model, it can work for one hit wonders who don't produce any chaff on the way, but it's a much less stable model to operate under.
    are we disagreeing on that?

    new zealand • Since May 2007 • 1882 posts Report Reply

  • robbery,

    Has it changed yet?

    no, but it must.

    new zealand • Since May 2007 • 1882 posts Report Reply

  • robbery,

    should never have been forced to make an album

    and they weren't forced.
    They thought you actually liked their music, all of it, not just their highly entertaining crowd pleaser. everyone's here to stay till the tide of fashion turns its back on them. OMC can walk up and grab the award for that as much as anyone.

    new zealand • Since May 2007 • 1882 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Uh, I think you'll find Rob has just claimed that copying is theft for the umpteenth time, so nothing is changing in at least one hermetically sealed universe.

    Meanwhile, there are pressing copyright issues like our representatives joining an attempt to kill a proposed WIPO treaty about international access to books by people with impaired vision. Cory Doctorow drew world attention to this. Solid background from IP Watch and an insider story from one of the people who got things moving in the first place, blind New Zealander Jonathon Mosen

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19611 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    With links this time:

    Cory Doctorow drew world attention to this. Solid background from IP Watch, and an insider story from one of the people who got things moving in the first place, blind New Zealander Jonathan Mosen.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19611 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    and

    Has it changed yet?

    No.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19611 posts Report Reply

  • Keir Leslie,

    Uh, I think you'll find Rob has just claimed that copying is theft for the umpteenth time, so nothing is changing in at least one hermetically sealed universe.

    This adds what to the conversation, really? You could have just gone straight to the interesting bit without needing any dig at anyone else.

    And I really don't believe that rob's talking about copying=theft, he's actually currently having a semi-sensible conversation about the costs of making music at the moment (making no predictions btw).

    Since Jul 2008 • 1452 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    This adds what to the conversation, really? You could have just gone straight to the interesting bit without needing any dig at anyone else.

    And I really don't believe that rob's talking about copying=theft, he's actually currently having a semi-sensible conversation about the costs of making music at the moment (making no predictions btw).

    Keir, the posts after Yamis's happened while I was writing. Amidst the conversation about pricing structures in the old music industry, Rob has yet again wilfully conflated copying with theft despite being told many times by many others why they are not the same thing. After my accidental post rather than preview slip, I gave you the link to his fatuous coke example.

    Given the history of this thread I am unclear why you would think that is not relevant. I've had to wade through dross again to get to its end and that annoys me. If I could filter out certain posters automatically I'd be happy but then the rest of the conversation gets dragged off-course too. I basically have no tolerance any more for fools who waste time rehashing falsehoods when there are actual fresh local concerns to discuss.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19611 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    I'd also welcome talk about solutions rather than endless bleating about the same problems for the same small group of people - the beleagured music industries.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19611 posts Report Reply

  • robbery,

    This adds what to the conversation, really?

    thanks keir
    just ignore him. I find it relatively easy.

    new zealand • Since May 2007 • 1882 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Ignorance comes easily for some.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19611 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    The album concept didn't come about because some evil label thought it would be a good way to cover their cocaine parties,

    Actually Rob, apart from the silly bit at the end you are 100% wrong, the album was conceived by RCA in the 1930s and perfected by Columbia in the 1940s as a way to combine tracks released individually. Prior to that it was just 78s..tracks..a bit like where we've ended up now again, whether you like it or not.

    Even through to the late 1960s the album was far less important to the recording industry both in market value and in marketing terms than the single. And there are still quite a few genres for which the album has always been less important than a track...electronic music for example.

    are we disagreeing on that?

    'fraid so..I think the fact that people are making more music than ever rather obviously counters that argument, along with the very substantial increases in returns globally, including NZ, by performing rights organisations (I didn't see that factored into your 5th form economics above, or are you assuming that people won't like your music enough to play it or want to use it elsewhere?).

    Lots of other people do seem to have worked their way through it without labouring and arguing every point as you seem to want to do again and again.

    The fact is, whether you like it or not, the album is increasingly marginalised as a format and no amount of '5th form economics' is going to bring it back. But despite that artists and indies the world over do seem to be making this work, and more than that, it's given the industry some new vitality, whether you can see it or not.

    There is so much music being made at the moment and so much of it is so very fucking exciting (is 2009 shaping up to be a huge year for new sounds or what..lots of people seem to be saying it is, myself included) it makes the endless cries of doom and despair seem hollow and very sad.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3280 posts Report Reply

  • Keir Leslie,

    Given the history of this thread I am unclear why you would think that is not relevant.

    I think it is relevant; I just don't think it helps.

    I'm sure you're right that robbery's not going to win any Poster of the Year awards; I just don't think that there's anything to be gained by bitching at him. It clearly isn't effective.

    (And Simon's being really interesting at the moment.)

    Since Jul 2008 • 1452 posts Report Reply

  • robbery,

    you are 100% wrong,

    read this to see why the things you have observed happen happen.

    there's not quite as much mythology in it as you like.

    the album was conceived by RCA

    you're missing the reason they did it, which was the whole point of my post. economies of scale buddy, its more economical. I'm not 100% wrong, you 100% missed what I was saying.
    Speaking for my own level of projects it is completely impossible to work on this level with singles. cold hard economical reality of 21st century for the genre and level I work in. you can tell me it isn't so but you'd be pulling it out of your arse if you did.

    .I think the fact that people are making more music than ever rather obviously counters that argument,

    its got practically nothing to do with what I'm talking about,

    I was simply outlining the economics behind making music from my experience. if it seems illogically to you that's fine, maybe its in the way I explained it, but its one of the considerations I make when I get involved with an artist and from many of the labels I've talked to its a consideration they all make to. Artist do say, we want to make an ep or a single and there is little business motivation to do them these days. Unless that one hit wonder is staring you right in the face you have to go about it from the a fore described route.

    I don't make singles purely for manufacturing cost issues. pure common sense. not a hard concept to get your head around.
    I notice arch hill don't put out singles or eps either.

    the reason people do make singles or albums is cos their artist does have one good moment and really can't come up with the goods convincingly to expand on that, not because it is a better format for them to make their money off. If the choice of an album of similar material was there it would be taken. if it was a lame arse single it wouldn't be made, the only reason to do a single is "I have one singular good idea and otherwise I'm crap, sorry"

    .electronic music for example.

    gee, one of the lowest overhead genre's around. now you know why. cos it cost em fuck all to record it, those costs didn't have to be recouped later in the process and they can opt for the media that favours them, ie an album of electronic is pretty hard to sustain, although kraftwerk did ok with it,

    The fact is, whether you like it or not, the album is increasingly marginalised as a format

    Its got nothing to do with me liking it. I was simply outlining the business logic behind an album. The reasons it makes sense, the costs it's trying to cover, how it's trying to do, and why. It's not rocket science, it's text book economics, you'd know this if you hadn't been bunking class.

    it's given the industry some new vitality, whether you can see it or not.

    jesus, are we back to the broad sweeping generalisations already?
    care to back up your claim which seems to be that the demise of the album has caused this mysterious new vitality you've personally detected in your circle of experience, far be it for you to speak as though your experience represents everyone else's?

    There is so much music being made at the moment and so much of it is so very fucking exciting (is 2009 shaping up to be a huge year for new sounds or what..lots of people seem to be saying it is, myself included)

    That must be cos your hip and on the street. Your statement is bollocks cos it's so much a matter of perspective and personal opinion. surely the time to see 2009 as a boom year for creativity is in like 10 years? your statement reeks of industry hype, "The best band eva!!!", yeah right, let me think about that for a couple of years before I agree with you.

    just cos people are making and releasing a swag load of music doesn't mean it's a good year for it.
    look at the mid 80's they were terrible compared to the years that came before them, but that's all a matter of personal taste which you seem to continually let colour your argument.

    as for you doom and gloom statement I wasn't preaching any in my budget discussions,
    I was trying to explain to anyone who cares to read it a little bit of what has to be considered behind the scenes of making a hi, or any song recording.
    you're in a position with what you do now to come in at the end of the process and cherry pick, and make your exorbitant profits off the top, but that is not the only process going on. It might be for you, but its certainly not for many other participants in the process.

    new zealand • Since May 2007 • 1882 posts Report Reply

  • robbery,

    else's

    don't know why that link didn't work. it did in preview
    anyway, giovanni's comment at the bottom of page 104 regarding your broad generalization that everyone is exactly the same as you when it comes to downloading music.

    new zealand • Since May 2007 • 1882 posts Report Reply

  • robbery,

    actually simon, any chance of you breaking some of this down into figures for us.
    I've done the math for the examples I've talked about and you've spoken in vague terms.
    lay out some of those figures for a project you've been involved in.
    I'd like to know the cuts for some of the top 00001% of nz music projects and maybe you could share similar figures for say the mee mees or blams album, and maybe the bongo's single.
    and maybe some recent figures too for how projects are budgeting these days from your side of the fence.
    there's nothing like first hand knowledge.

    new zealand • Since May 2007 • 1882 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    you're missing the reason they did it, which was the whole point of my post. economies of scale buddy, its more economical. I'm not 100% wrong, you 100% missed what I was saying.

    No, I'm still right..it was conceived to combine tracks that were often very profitable in their own right, to make more money for the labels, not that there is anything wrong with that. Nothing to do with economy of scale. It was a way to make a lot more money rather easily, which was the whole point. Until the jazz guys and Frank Sinatra came along in the 50s nobody thought of the album as any more than a bunch of tracks combined. And even then it took The Beatles and Dylan to convert it into the thing you are talking about: 'the album', and not a few hits and a bunch of tracks knocked out in a 12 hour session to cash in after the fact.

    its got practically nothing to do with what I'm talking about,

    It has everything to do with it. It's the core of the argument. You've already admitted you don't listen to new music. What this always seems to come back to is your unwillingness to adapt, to move on. Other people make music, they cover their costs and people seem to like them. There is a truck load of new music released every day..more than at any time in my life time but much of it because of the way delivery has adapted, never makes an album or even a physical format. Other people have adapted.

    Your statement is bollocks cos it's so much a matter of perspective and personal opinion. surely the time to see 2009 as a boom year for creativity is in like 10 years?

    From a person who's already admitted they've not listened to much new music since 1982 that's rather funny. So, lets talk about 1982. Did you rate Echo & The Bunnymen or Blam Blam Blam or The Clean or Talking Heads or Elvis Costello or New Order or The Message that year? Because lots of people did and they could work out that they were timeless records. It was a good year..we all knew it at the time. 2009 to quite a few is shaping up pretty well to us 'hipsters'. Sorry you can't see it but I assure you it's not industry talk. I sure as hell hope I'm not too cloth eared that I have to wait ten or even two years to work it out.

    I've done the math for the examples I've talked about and you've spoken in vague terms. lay out some of those figures for a project you've been involved in.

    Uh, no but it's hardly obscure or vague stuff. You've laid out a few examples of how it works if you want to press half a dozen discs in your back shed, not how record labels work..real ones on just about every level who exploit every opportunity to return income from the masters they own. Since a few pages back someone had to explain to you how digital returns to the copyright owner, and in another thread fairly simple marketing and structural economics of the recording industry had to be explained several times to you, I have no desire to go there again. Sorry if that sounds arrogant, but it is what it is.

    But it is worth pointing out, since you ask that both the Blams and the Meemees had covered their singles costs on sales but it was their albums that blew them out of the water.

    I seem to be always on the defensive over having released records that people actually want to buy. It's a crime of some sort, both repeatedly implied and actually stated by you, to find a market and successfully exploit music unless it's within the parameters you allow. And you refuse to accept that many others have done and are doing so on an ongoing basis in 2009.

    For that I apologise too.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3280 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    It has everything to do with it. It's the core of the argument. You've already admitted you don't listen to new music.

    Somebody must have linked to this already.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7473 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    Touche, very much.
    Can we all go home now?

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19611 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Can we all go home now?

    I'll get my hat and coat

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3280 posts Report Reply

  • robbery,

    You've already admitted you don't listen to new music.

    please do point me to that exact quote simon. no really, I'm dying to see it.

    From a person who's already admitted they've not listened to much new music since 1982 that's rather funny

    wow, there you go again, you really are a funny man, what the fuck are you on about?

    Did you rate Echo & The Bunnymen or Blam Blam Blam or The Clean or Talking Heads or Elvis Costello or New Order or The Message that year

    actually I wasn't devoting my time to guessing what people would think of this stuff in the future I was enjoying it for the moment. you're the one who's hell bent on inventing what the overall picture will be.
    double j and twice the t anyone? a lot of people devote a lot of time to things best forgotten.
    A lot of people devote a lot of time to things that should be remembered as outstanding but aren't. Its so something that can't be judged at the time, even though you think it can, I'm sure there are plenty of things you thought were amazing at the time but with the benefit of hindsight turned out to be nothing more than a gimmick. a gimmick that trucked out loads of copies at the time no doubt but a gimmick none the less.

    Uh, no but it's hardly obscure or vague stuff.

    thought as much, all talk, no figures. after slagging majors for helping themselves to a large slice of an artists pie I was dead keen to see what your slice of the how bizzare pie was, I've heard it was healthy.

    You've laid out a few examples of how it works if you want to press half a dozen discs in your back shed,

    half a dozen, press, back shed, hilarious old man, if you're going to take the piss at least do it with terms from this century.

    Since a few pages back someone had to explain to you how digital returns to the copyright owner, and in another thread fairly simple marketing and structural economics of the recording industry had to be explained several times to you,

    someone? you mean you, the guy who doesn't get his feet wet any more?
    if you really are involved at the level you profess then you'll have those budget figures sitting on your desk and you'll be able to give us all a real insiders look into the goings on of projects. come on simon, you're looking a bit like hot air from here.

    I have no desire to go there again. Sorry if that sounds arrogant, but it is what it is.

    yeah, hot air.

    But it is worth pointing out, since you ask that both the Blams and the Meemees had covered their singles costs on sales but it was their albums that blew them out of the water.

    there you go, you managed to give us a real piece of information from your personal experience. now try something in the 21st century, since that example came from the era of vinyl.

    I seem to be always on the defensive over having released records that people actually want to buy.

    why yes that is true, you have released and or been associated with some records that have sold quite well, one exceptionally so, full kudos for that, but you might want to cast your eye over your catalogue again to remind yourself of some of the less than stellar (but in my opinion still worthy) items. they're not all winners by a long shot, and that is the nature of music (and film) production and in many cases its got nothing to do with their worth an a piece of art. speaking from a personal perspective most of the works that I consider exceptional are very low level pieces as far as chart success goes. you going to have a go at that as well?

    It's a crime of some sort, both repeatedly implied and actually stated by you, to find a market and successfully exploit music unless it's within the parameters you allow.

    are you a parallel universe simon grigg or something?. I've no idea where you're pulling this shit from but it bears little relevance to what I've said or what I think.

    some chart hits are a crime against humanity. I think you keep the crappy one's you were near as quiet as you can, I know there have been some. (was it you who did that puss filled 3 the hard way come back, not that it got anywhere near the charts, or was it the omc come back, that reeked about as much) I'm not going to press charges this time, but I'm watching you mate, one over promoted novelty (s)hit too many and they'll be a price to pay.

    now show me exactly where I said I stopped listening after 1982 or eat your words.

    new zealand • Since May 2007 • 1882 posts Report Reply

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