Music Distribution

I understand the concerns musicians have regarding distribution far and wide across the internet and their feeling aggrieved at loss of revenue, but the time has come for these musicians to recognize not only the negative impact of major record labels old fashioned methods of distribution, but also recognize the value of that wider distribution.

Sea of Sound
Image by fensterbme via Flickr

The recent payment by google to the PRS for videos on YouTube, is but one part of the equation. Now that the PRS are happy with their settlement, google will push their advertising much harder, as they too need to recover costs.

They will also be ever keener to have blogs and websites embed these videos, which is great for the Musicians, great for the Record labels,great for google, but for the blogs? Who is actually paying their hosting costs? Where is the payment from the record industry to the websites across the world who legally market and make available those self sameYouTube videos which will earn the upper tiers money, but actually cost the end distributor money?

The record companies and musicians are also keen to have websites utilise paid for downloads, very nice too, using the likes of itunes et al. itunes themselves in turn offer affiliate programmes to encourage third party websites to promote their product. That is a good thing as at least the end distributor is making some return, if they are able to sell downloads from their websites. But it is itunes who are taking the hit, not the end musician.

The major record labels still want to control the whole package from band ownership to point of sale, including offering their artists ‘distribution’ as part of the package. It is time the major labels gave up trying to control distribution, it is not in the interest of the musician or the end consumer that they still attempt to control this distribution.

Whilst the major labels are happy to negotiate with itunes over revenue sharing, they are not prepared to do so with a.n other blog and this is so out of step with the current world and automation, as to be ridiculous.

There is no reason the major labels can’t set up their own affiliate programmes, permitting the end distributor to make music available legally on their website and be paid directly for what they sell and pay directly for any premium material they wish to display, withoutitunes etc. taking a cut, or google not passing on any revenue. This would enable a fairer system both for the musician and for the listener, not to mention the actual distributor.

The major labels owe it to the musicians they manage to optimise revenue and distribution opportunities. By concentrating purely on deals with large companies, they are ultimately failing their clients.

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2 Responses “Music Distribution”

  1. DashBook says:

    Nice article. I agree that the publishers’ job is to sell through all channels that will optimize royalties.

  2. anarchyintheuk says:

    Thanks for taking time out to respond.

    The software you offer is a great example of how easy it is to distribute and track sales through multi-distribution channels.

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