See Things Differently
This open letter from Geoff Taylor demonstrates the almost irreversible problem faced by the Record Industry.
Geoff Taylor is Chairman of the BPI, who if you didn’t know, are the trade body who represent the Major record labels (officially, they’re meant to represent all labels but that’s only a technicality). His argument against Bill Thompson is so laughable and full of holes that it takes a couple of re-reads to fully appreciate it.
For the BPI to accuse anyone of having ‘dated views’ defies belief, especially when those ‘dated views’ are simply being supportive of new models of digital distribution. The fact P2P services are not licensed is viewed by the BPI as ‘Digital Utopianism’ rather than as ‘Commercial Suicide’ by the members who refuse to work with them.
Taylor then goes on the cite services such as EMusic, Napster, Last.fm and We7 as fine examples of new licensed digital services. EMusic can’t get licenses from the Majors who will not work with MP3. Napster have been forced in to using consumer-unfriendly WMA for years at the insistence of the Majors. Warners have just pulled out of Last.fm saying their license rate is ‘out of whack’ with companies like Imeem (who were being sued by Warners when they were forced in to agreeing a non-commercial rate). And We7’s free model is not licensed by Majors.
I don’t normally use this blog to criticise the BPI because it’s far too easy and there are sufficient number of other people doing it. But Taylor’s email, being such a public admittance of ignorance and short-sightedness, really has to be shot down as a piece of corporate propaganda bullshit that is holding back music distribution for both artists and fans.