iTunes is ‘Exclusively Streaming David Bowie’s The Next Day,’ Yet It’s Already On Grooveshark…

Last week Apple announced that it would be exclusively streaming the new David Bowie album, The Next Day, on iTunes through March 12.  It turns out it’s not as exclusive as they, perhaps, expected.

bowie_grooveshark
The company, and indeed Bowie, may be surprised to see that the entire album already is available to stream somewhere else — namely on Grooveshark.

This despite the album not being on sale until March 11, which, as Grooveshark relies on user-generated content, begs the question: how did the person uploading it acquire it?

The sound quality is fine, so it would either have to have been ripped off the iTunes site or acquired through some online leak. As the legendary artist managed to keep the recording of the album completely secret, it’s very unlikely anyone involved in it is the source of a leak.

bowie_youtube

And, if you prefer to own the record instead of streaming it, this uploader has helpfully posted a link to where you can download the ‘Mp3 music song’ “You Feel So Lonely You Could Die” (a track off the soon-to-be-released album) on YouTube.

These streams and download links are not difficult to find on Grooveshark and YouTube – I simply had to type in “David Bowie” and the album title – so how come neither of the sites have taken them down?

This complete lack of monitoring of their inventory doesn’t just affect Apple, Bowie and his label – it also punishes music services that make their utmost to stay on the right side of the law and work with those who provide the music.

Spotify is one such service, and it only features music that it has a license for. To pay the rights holders, they have to feature a lot of intrusive ads in between songs, and charge £10 for subscriptions without adverts. Meanwhile, they have to compete with music services such as Grooveshark and YouTube, that feature plenty of unlicensed music – and, as we can see and hear, unreleased albums – that they don’t pay for, and therefore are under less financial pressure.

YouTube features almost any album you want to listen to in full. Here we’ve found the Beatles’ remastered Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album, as well as all other Beatles albums and Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side of the Moon (the fact that it’s only audio, with a still shot of the cover, illustrates how important music has become to YouTube).

None of these albums are on Spotify, which makes you wonder if YouTube has a license to feature them. As none of them have been uploaded by the artist or label, one can only assume the answer is: no.

sgtpeppers_youtube

In 2002 Bowie said: “Music itself is going to become like running water or electricity. So it’s like, just take advantage of these last few years because none of this is ever going to happen again. You’d better be prepared for doing a lot of touring because that’s really the only unique situation that’s going to be left.”

 

Yet, he chose to partner with a major label for his latest album, and to protect its exclusivity. I guess we can look forward to a Bowie tour in the not-so-distant future?

85 Responses

  1. David
    David

    I hope Helienne will feature this prominently in the Guardian, which, with all due respect to DMN, has a more prominent media profile. (Indeed, it looks like a potential main news story, given the media prominence of Bowie’s comeback. Helienne might want to alert the Guardian’s news team.)

    Looking on the bright side, this could kill Grooveshark. It would be difficult to find a more perfect illustration of what their business is really all about.

    Reply
    • Helienne
      Helienne

      Sadly, due to budget cuts my Guardian column is now only published every other week, instead of every week. So the next one isn’t due until next week, I’m afraid.

      Reply
      • Visitor
        Visitor

        Maybe my jab was too subtle.
        I am sure Helienne Lindvall is more proficient at the use of the english language than the majority of americans.
        Just wondering why there were no comments from the grammar police, and I guess you answered my question.

        Reply
  2. jw
    jw

    For what it’s worth, the version on Grooveshark doesn’t include the 3 bonus tracks on the iTunes version of the album, or the deluxe cd version that leaked earlier this afternoon. This is probably the 14 track version that leaked last week.
    Anyways, I don’t think it’s very common that albums are downloaded from iTunes & then transcoded to mp3 & then uploaded to Grooveshark.

    Reply
    • Visitor
      Visitor

      “the version on Grooveshark doesn’t include the 3 bonus tracks on the iTunes version of the album”
      I’m sure Mr. Bowie is busy writing thank you notes.

      Reply
    • Copyright employee
      Copyright employee

      Why do you write on a music website when you obviously don’t care about music?
      I’ve seen plenty of your comments defending Google and the internet and showing your disregard for intellectual property. DMCA takedowns don’t work! The entertainment industry has to invest millions of dollars just trying to protect their property, but when they confront Google about their involvement (servicing ads/putting pirate sites in the top results), you scream bloody murder.
      You probably listen to music, right? Do you think a magical fairy creates, records, masters and delivers that music to your ears? Maybe you think all of that happens at no cost? An indie album costs around $10k (on the cheap side) to make and that doesn’t even account for marketing or other man-hours on the label side.
      Users do not have the rights to exploit content that they do not own! The very existance of relpeat infringers like Grooveshark proves that the internet is faulted. They should be held accountable for the content on their websites…especially if the same exact content has to be reported month after month.
      You obviously create nothing in this world, which is why you feel you are entitled to the work of others.

      Reply
      • Visitor
        Visitor

        “You obviously create nothing in this world, which is why you feel you are entitled to the work of others.”
        Or he creates vpn’s like his brother in arms…
        Anyway, you’re absolutely right on all accounts.

        Reply
      • Central Scrutinizer
        Central Scrutinizer

        Nice diatribe.
        However, I would like you to keep focus on the real source of conflict here.
        “the internet is faulted”
        This is not correct.
        What you want to focus yor anger on is the DMCA and the safe harbour provision that places the burden of copyright enforcement on the owner of the copyright not the ISPs, websites, search engines etc.

        Reply
      • jw
        jw

        lol. I don’t have a disregard for intellectual property. I understand how it sounds like that sometimes, but I can assure you that it’s not the case. I think that enforcement should happen at the point of upload, where the crime is committed, between the parties involved (i.e. not Google)… I’m for a third party ContentID-type system that can be plugged into any website that allows users to upload content above a certain file size. The ContentID-type system has proven effective on YouTube, & it’s proving effective on sites like SoundCloud. It shouldn’t be Google’s responsibility to determine the legitimigacy of every file it indexes. Not only is it impractical, it’s just sort of a silly idea.
        There’s a lot of people with really strong opinions about piracy who don’t have the faintest clue about technology or consumer behavior. With my comments, I’m trying to address that.
        I haven’t listened to the Bowie record. I don’t use Grooveshark except as a last resort when I want to listen to something that’s not on Spotify or in my collection, which is maybe twice a year. And I haven’t downloaded a leaked version, I just looked into it really quickly because I feel like, if I’m going to have an opinion on piracy, I should know what’s going on & get an understanding of how things work & what consumer behavior is. That’s the best way to develop the technology that beats piracy, I think. And if Helienne Lindvall is going to suggest that this record was purchased on iTunes & then transcoded into another format & uploaded to Grooveshark, she ought to at least make sure the tracklistings are the same. Because what she suggested is not at all likely the case.
        I’m perfectly aware of how much it costs to make a record. And I’m not justifying piracy or committing piracy. I pay for Spotify premium, & buy vinyl regularly… heck, I ordered two compact discs from Devin Davis a couple of weeks ago. I spend much more than the average consumer on music. Your anger is misdirected, you don’t understand me, & you have no idea as to what do & don’t I create.
        It’s the arrogance & the ignorance of folks like you who got the music industry into the mess it’s in. And trust me, you will not be one of the ones leading the music industry out of the mess. You can bet your house on that.

        Reply
        • Copyright Employee
          Copyright Employee

          Your points are well stated in your reply, JW. I’m certainly not going to be the one to save the music industry. However, I feel the more that consumers are allowed to think that music is a “free” product, the worse it will be for the creators. I also think we need to follow the money. It’s not like we’re dealing with friends burning each other CD’s here. People are making a lot of money and in doing so, are devaluing the product. I agree with Content-ID and any other way to cut into the growing piracy industry. But allowing sites that repeatedly infringe to operate (even if they have some legal content) is not acceptable.
          If a mobster owns a pizzaria that he sells stolen goods out of the back of, the pizzaria gets shut down. It doesn’t make a difference that he was legitimately selling pizza out of the front of the shop. This is how sites like the PirateBay should be treated. Otherwise, where is the incentive of a website to monitor it’s content?
          But I digress: The consumers might already be too engrained in a market of free music. So, I guess we’re F*@#d.

          Reply
          • Visitor
            Visitor

            “If a mobster owns a pizzaria that he sells stolen goods out of the back of, the pizzaria gets shut down. It doesn’t make a difference that he was legitimately selling pizza out of the front of the shop.”
            Sure, it makes a difference.
            To jw…

          • jw
            jw

            Oh yeah, the Pirate Bay makes no attempt to administer the content added to their site according to copyright, & in fact they protect the content from deindexing. It sort of moves from a case of negligence towards actively harboring illegal activity. But, to be clear, the Pirate Bay itself is alegal. It’s the users’ content that is legal or illegal. The Pirate Bay isn’t selling anything out of the front or the back of their shop. In Sweden they were convicted of assisting in making copyrighted content available, which basically pins them as accessories to someone else’s crimes.
            These websites are essentially venues. You can’t just shut down a bar because you don’t like the kind of people that hang out there. If someone’s selling drugs at a bar, the drug dealer goes to jail, not the bar. The bar itself has to commit a crime, whether it’s participating in the deals or actively preventing law enforcement from enforcing the law, in order for them to become subject to any sort of prosecution. At least that’s what I gather from watching a lot of television.
            The reason that the RIAA quit suing individuals is not because it lacks legal merit… they were winning their cases. It was just costing more than it was earning, & it wasn’t having an effect on piracy overall. The alternative strategy, which is pursuing the sites that host or index the content, is predicated on those sites posting copyrighted material themselves, actively protecting copyrighted material that’s been uploaded by it’s users, or committing some other crime.
            That’s why I object to calling any site that’s DMCA complient a pirate site, which happens a lot around here. That doesn’t mean that I support piracy, it just means that I don’t support enforcing copyright at the expense of the integrity of the law. Things must remain in context.
            That’s why I think this kind of stuff ought to be addressed at the point of upload. Ad networks could require participation in a third party ContentID type solution for any site that allows users to upload content, & maybe the network recieves some sort of subsidy or stipend for that so that the cost is defrayed amongst the parties involved. This puts the onus on rights holders, who have the most incentive, to register their content, & then the enforcement is automated. Everybody wins.
            I don’t think that consumers are engrained in a market of free music, necessarily, but they’re certainly, & increasingly, growing unaccustomed to the 1-for-1 transaction when it comes to entertainment. Subscription solves the disruptions of piracy. The fidelity of the mp3s/m4as on these download stores haven’t been a selling point thus far because they’ve been fighting bandwidth & storage limitations. At the point when lossless streaming becomes practical, it will become a huge selling point and mp3s are not going to seem so shiny. It will be tantamount to a giant collection of bootlegged cassette tapes. Even if the consumer can’t legitimately hear the difference, the context will encourage listeners to listen more closely to high fidelity streams & convince themselves that they hear a difference. And at that point no one is going to reacquire their entire library in a format like flac (legally or otherwise) when you can just pay for streaming audio, which will elicit mass conversion.
            At least that’s my prediction.
            I think that Apple sees this coming, & that’s the brilliance of their Match service… they can scan your collection of mp3s, reconstruct your collection in the cloud, &, at the point where it becomes practical, serve it back to you as lossless audio. I’m sure Apple is betting that people are more comfortable with their own collection, which they are invested in & familiar with, than streaming from a library of millions & millions of songs. I hope that eventually music discovery will reach a point where this is not the case.

          • Visitor
            Visitor

            Just to be clear:
            * The Pirate Bay is a criminal organization.
            * It has made millions of dollars from copyright infringement.
            * Its illegal website is blocked in a constantly growing number of countries.
            * Its founders are convicted criminals who are forbidden to run the website.
            * Last week, the site was kicked out of Norway — just like it was kicked out of Sweden the week before — after the pro-child porn organization The Pirate ‘Party’ was forced by law to stop hosting the site.
            * Numerous new initiatives to block, choke and stop the Pirate Bay are on their way in the US and many other countries across the world, led by a wide range of organizations and law enforcement agencies.

          • jw
            jw

            Sure, they’re harboring a lot of illegal activity. But I think it’s disingenuous to call them a criminal organization. They’re an information sharing platform, you can use it to share things legally just as easily as you can use it to share things illegally. The site does not encourage one over the other.
            Their disposition is at odds with copyright law, & their willful negligence is illegal, & their active harboring (though not hosting) of illegal content is, of course, illegal. But this is all secondary to the main purpose of the site, which is information sharing. This is consistent with the ruling in Sweden, which, again, basically pinned them as accessories to illegal activity, which I’ll say I agree with.
            I think these distinctions are important.
            When you have law enforcement agencies illegally obtaining search warrants & raiding Kim Dotcom in SWAT gear & what have you… there’s something off there. You can’t purport to support copyright law, but then disregard laws that protect the rights of individuals. Because then you’re not enforcing copyright law, you’re just enforcing the will of copyright owners, & that is supremely dangerous. And in the end you’re not going to get your man that way, anyhow, if there’s any justice.
            So there’s got to be balance there, & efforts have to be made to understand the perspective of the offender, & the nuances of his or her philosophy, & to make assessments based on what is genuinely & actually there, not overblown accusations that stem from emotional responses that are simply based on the interest of copyright owners, & to execute this stuff legally, according to the rights of the copyright owner & also the offender.

    • Visitor
      Visitor

      I have software that converts sound file sources to most any other sound file. It doesn’t take long and I don’t understand why this seems an unlikely source.
      Anyway is that really the point of the article?

      Reply
      • jw
        jw

        It’s not the point of the article, but I think it’s worth exploring where the tracks came from.
        Honestly, I was under the impression that the album was exclusively up for download on iTunes, not for streaming, so I could’ve been wrong about it not being an iTunes rip. But the point I was trying to make was that pretty much anything available on iTunes is more easily available as an mp3, & that stuff usually goes right up on Grooveshark. To that point, a spectrum analysis (lol) of the tracks on Grooveshark makes me think they’re legit 320kbps mp3, rather than a transcode from the 256kbps aac itunes stream. So I would assume it’s a copy from retail or the duplication facility or somewhere else in the distribution chain.
        I’m just pointing out that this is pretty consistent with leaks of the past, not a sideeffect of the iTunes exclusive.

        Reply
        • Conspiracy Freak
          Conspiracy Freak

          are you suggesting that either bowie’s camp or apple has a grooveshark sympathizer mole
          OR
          someone intentionally leaked to study the degree of grooveshark’s negative impact on digital sales?

          Reply
          • jw
            jw

            I’m saying the recording might’ve been under wraps, but once you reach manufacturing & distribution, everything is pretty much guaranteed to leak.

  3. Jack
    Jack

    Exclusivity & co is maybe the real problem, no?
    Why release something only for a part of the market (those who actually use iTunes)? Why no releasing it for everybody and negotiate agreement with platforms to allow a broader distribution of the music?
    Of course people want to listen to this new album, and as I’m not an iTunes user, I will probably go on Grooveshark…

    Reply
    • Visitor
      Visitor

      “Exclusivity & co is maybe the real problem, no?”
      No, Jack.
      You’re not allowed to steal a car just because you can’t buy one in a grocery store.
      “as I’m not an iTunes user, I will probably go on Grooveshark”
      Which makes you a thief.

      Reply
  4. Visitor
    Visitor

    “None of these albums are on Spotify, which makes you wonder if YouTube has a license to feature them. As none of them have been uploaded by the artist or label, one can only assume the answer is: no.”
    I agree with you on almost everything you write — and I’m very happy that you bring these stories — but there’s a good chance that these albums are monetized by the right owners.
    YouTube’s Content ID is very effecient (in contrast to Google Search’s algos).
    Content owners may simply prefer YouTube over Spotify because they can get far more streams on the tube.

    Reply
    • jw
      jw

      You can’t really contrast Google’s “search algos” against ContentID… they’re not the same thing at all.
      YouTube has it’s own search algorithm that displays video results, a better comparison would be Google’s spiders that “crawl” the web & index pages. For Google to work like YouTube, the spiders would have to download & analyze every media file on every page of the internet (and maybe even convert those files to an analyzable format), rather than just downloading the aboslute minimum (html, xml, pdf, sometimes images, etc) to understand the content of the page. This would slow Google’s indexing by some outrageous unknown multiple, & would effectively break the service. ContentID only works because YouTube has access to these files at the point of upload, & they’re hosting the content themselves.
      ContentID is effective, & is efficient by the standard of analyzing videos, but not compared to Google’s spiders, which are a model of efficiency.

      Reply
      • Visitor
        Visitor

        “You can’t really contrast Google’s “search algos” against ContentID… they’re not the same thing at all.”
        Let me repeat:
        Google have absolute control over their search engine:
        They successfully filter child porn, illegal distribution of drugs and weapons, assassins for hire, counterfeit money and stolen credit card numbers.
        The New York Times nailed it:
        “When it comes to the music industry, there are two Googles. And the difference between them leads to a complicated and fraught relationship.
        One Google is represented by its suite of entertainment media services like YouTube and Google Play, which have licensing agreements with the major labels and music publishers, along with movie studios and other media companies. That side is slowly becoming integrated into the fabric of the entertainment industry, through deals like the one announced by Billboard magazine this week that it would start incorporating YouTube play counts into its chart formulas.
        The other side of Google is its mighty search engine, the road map to the Internet, which people use to find content of all kinds — some of it preferred by the entertainment industry, but a great deal of it not. This is the side of Google that has the most frequent and public fights with the entertainment industry (though, to be sure, media companies have had no shortage of conflict with YouTube over the years).”
        http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/02/21/for-music-industry-a-story-of-two-googles/
        YouTube is a great tool and almost legitimate — they just need to fix their autocomplete — while Google Search is the world’s leading piracy search engine.

        Reply
        • jw
          jw

          Didn’t we have this debate already & wasn’t it clear that you don’t really have any technical insight on the matter?
          The problem is that those pages use rather benign words like “download” & “mp3” & band names, which are all context-dependent. The word “porn” is not.
          If all of the infringing pages had phrases like “download illegally!” or “copyright infringing material!” or “piracy provider!” it would be a lot easier.

          Reply
          • Visitor
            Visitor

            “If all of the infringing pages had phrases like “download illegally!” or “copyright infringing material!” or “piracy provider!” it would be a lot easier.”
            Oh, yeah…
            So you’re saying this Pirate Bay is, like, you know, a criminal site? Gee whiz, how were we to know?
            Erik Zchmitt

          • jw
            jw

            Well the problem is that there is legitimate content on the Pirate Bay & Google takes the stance that the legitimate content should not be blocked. So there has to be some mechanism that distinguishes legitimate from illegitimate content, & currently that is DMCA takedown notices.
            You’re suggesting that it’s as easy as blocking the domain thepiratebay.se, but you would say the same thing about 4shared.com or any site that is populated by user uploaded content, because that functionality is bound to be abused by users. And user uploaded content is the backbone of the internet. Just look at what sites get the most traffic.
            You’re at odds with Google on the nature of the internet, & the majority of the internet sides with Google.

          • David
            David

            For search terms like ‘MP3 download’ there are so few legitimate results compared with the illegitimate ones that it would be sensible to take the default position that all search results are illegitimate, then ‘screen in’ the relatively small number of legitimate ones (iTunes, etc). Occasionally the innocent would suffer along with the guilty, but on balance legitimate sources would gain far more than they lose by such a system.
            Of course the illegal sources would try gaming the system by avoiding using the proscribed search terms, but there is a limit to how far they can go without defeating their own objectives. If the terms they use are too obscure for Google to identify, they will probably be too obscure for the ‘customers’! Reminds me of the old joke about the mohel with a clock in the window. Someone goes in and asks if he sells clocks. Mohel replies, ‘No, I’m a mohel’. The ‘customer’ asks, ‘So why have you got a clock in the window?’ The mohel shrugs and says ‘So what should I put in the window?’

          • jw
            jw

            Really?
            Every artist website, every legitimate store, every music blog, every fan website that offers rarities/bootlegs/etc, any website that offers live shows for download, sites that offer cc licensed or public domain audiobooks, sites that offer audio interviews…
            There’s just no way that all of that content could be “screened in.”

          • David
            David

            I think it could, quite easily. The RIAA already keeps a register of legitimate digital music services. Other registers could be compiled for ebooks, etc. Covering all legitimate cases would require some effort and ingenuity, but it’s not rocket science. There could be an appeals procedure for sites wrongly excluded, just as there is for DMCA notices. And if a few legitimate cases are still excluded, it’s not the end of the world. You seem to be more concerned by the possibility that a few ‘good’ results would be excluded than with the present glaring scandal that millions of ‘bad’ results are not excluded.

          • jw
            jw

            It’s much more than that. It means creating content going forward involves petitioning Google, or the RIAA, or some other registrar to include you, & that’s not the way that the internet should or ought to work. That’s called a “directory,” not a search engine, which is what Yahoo! was, which worked well in the 1990s when the internet was tiny, but the world we live in is completely different.
            The reality is that there are many, many, many sites that have mp3s for download that you could probably never conceive, & would never find a use for. But for someone it’s exactly what they need. And that’s precisely why we’ve moved away from the directory structure, because these edge cases can’t possibly be foreseen, & only comprehensive indexing can serve these cases. And what of the future? This type of system discourages the mp3 format from being used in new & innovative ways because it’s censored.
            Your suggestion that “a few ‘good’ results would be excluded” shows a fundamental misunderstanding of the scope & the purpose of the internet. That’s just not something you would say if you had even a basic understanding of what the internet is, & what Google Search’s purpose & roll are, & how essential they are to the way that the internet works.
            Yes, I am more concerned about what would be excluded than I am about what infringement occurs currently, but it’s HARDLY “a few ‘good’ results.” I wouldn’t even venture to guess what all would be left out.
            The other issue is that you’re suggesting making fundamental changes to the way the internet works based on an issue that is expiring… piracy is directly related to content ownership, & that’s a concept that’s on it’s way out the door. When music piracy is a thing of the past, we’re still left with the censorship. That’s not something that can be easily be undone. Because if you block “mp3 download” by default, you also have to block “ogg download” & “wav download” & “flac download” & whatever else, otherwise the format is just going to shift to circumvent the censorship. And that evolution towards lossless formats is going to happen anyhow, so there’s no mistaking that blocking “mp3 download” is only going to work for so long, anyways.
            There’s a ton of issues. You’re talking censoring downloadable audio across the entire internet. For the sake of an industry that’s not even that big.

          • David
            David

            It does indeed raise ‘a ton of issues’, but your latest comments (especially the last line!) suggest that you really don’t want to deal with the problem at hand. Obviously you think that the unfettered working of the internet is more important than the mere ‘content’ – rather like a plumber who cares more about the gleaming perfection of his pipes than the water flowing through them. Until the water runs out.
            I therefore won’t respond in detail, but I will just point out that I am not suggesting censoring ‘audio content’. If I am suggesting ‘censoring’ anything, it is merely search results. The ‘content’ (if legitimate, of course) would still be available and could be promoted in countless ways not involving search engines. But in practice I suspect that any legitimate website could be tweaked so that it did not fall foul of ‘censorship’.

          • jw
            jw

            What you’re suggesting is akin to all of the voter ID laws that the Republicans tried or succeeded in passing in order to minimalize the affect of lower class, democrat-voting minorities.
            Most importantly the registrar is judge & jury here. But then there may be someone who is cataloging something obscure & doesn’t want to or know to go through the registration process. Without Google, that site is basically floating out in the middle of the ocean. Because he’s not going to buy ads for it. The brilliance of Google, & the way that it transformed the internet, is by making these types of sites findable. The value of google is it’s scope… it’s the exhaustiveness of the database, or whatever the word for that is.
            And what about sites that are no longer updated? All websites without current active administration just disappear. How is that a good idea?
            I’m NOT against copyright. I AM against censorship. I think that regulation should occur at the point of upload, just like youtube, via a 3rd party system just like ContentID (there could actually be a lot of money in this). I think it’s the responsibility of the user & the site owner, not Google.
            What I’m promoting is an understanding of the internet & of Google. Just because I’m against one type of copyright enforcement (and with good reason) doesn’t mean that I’m against all types. Just because your idea doesn’t work doesn’t mean all ideas don’t work.

          • Visitor
            Visitor

            “There could be an appeals procedure for sites wrongly excluded, just as there is for DMCA notices”
            Indeed. And let’s not forget that it can cost hundreds of thousands dollars to send illegitimate takedown notices.
            “And if a few legitimate cases are still excluded, it’s not the end of the world”
            I strongly disagree!
            But we already have the solution (see above)…

          • jelnet
            jelnet

            Paul Resnikoff – You really need to sort out the indentation algorithm on this forum – it sucks! 😀

          • Visitor
            Visitor

            Another fast & easy approach would be to ban the most well known criminal sites.
            They could do it instantly and there would be zero casualties…

          • Visitor
            Visitor

            “If it really was fast and easy, wouldn’t it have been done already?”
            No.
            Google’s business model is to maximize the revenue they generate from the interval between a and b, where a is the moment they upload the criminal material, and b is the moment when they are forced to take it down.

          • jw
            jw

            Get this through your skull… Google is not making a killing off serving links to mp3 files. Google is bigger than any music label or any movie studio has ever been, & they didn’t ride the Pirate Bay to the top of the mountain. That’s all in your head.

            If you think their motivation is strictly financial, you’re dead wrong.

          • jw
            jw

            If Google were really making that much money off of music piracy, then the labels should just open up their own Pirate Bay, give the music away from free, & then just sit back & watch the advertising cash flow in.

          • jelnet
            jelnet

            Paul Resnikoff- I really feel like my opinion is being marginalised here!!! 🙂

        • Bandit
          Bandit

          Uhh…can’t you guys just insert a link to the last time this was hashed out here at DMN?
          I mean c’mon I think you literally cut and pasted that comment from last time.
          Providing a link would save space and the columns wouldn’t get so tiny.

          Reply
          • Visitor
            Visitor

            Opinions change all the time, facts not so much. And repetition of facts is a key part of education.
            But I hear you.
            To save space, I’m going to introduce a new acronym:
            GHACOTSETSFCPIDODAWAFHCMASCCN
            (Google have absolute control over their search engine: They successfully filter child porn, illegal distribution of drugs and weapons, assassins for hire, counterfeit money and stolen credit card numbers.)
            Don’t forget it, now.

    • Visitor
      Visitor

      Of course not, 🙂 only pirates think the web is synonymous with illegal sites.
      For the rest of us, it’s a world of opportunities and wonders.

      Reply
  5. jw
    jw

    @ JW

    “If Google were really making that much money off of music piracy, then the labels should just open up their own Pirate Bay, give the music away from free, & then just sit back & watch the advertising cash flow in.”

    the problem is of course JD that the pirate bay doesn’t pay the fixed costs of production, to anyone, ever. it’s a different game when you actually are paying the artists (which the pirate bay is not).

    although, you do raise a great point – if all of that advertising revenue could be diverted from pirate sites to legitimate and licensed outlets like Spotify and Pandora maybe artists actually could get paid a decent rate.

    think about it. the pirate sites are taking revenue from the ecosystem that otherwise should be paid to artists in the form of legitimate revenue sharing and legal and licensed sites.

    Reply
  6. jelnet
    jelnet

    In 2002 Bowie said: “Music itself is going to become like running water or electricity….”

    Well that was wrong then… where I come from electricity consumption is very closely monitored and metered and expensive, likewise water is subject to not insignicant monthly bills…

    Reply
  7. Digital music news fan
    Digital music news fan

    Digital music news is an awesome website …so is grooveshark… I have been using grooveshark since its inception. I think its great. One of the best music sites out there! I agree with the above user – it is not uncommon for someone to d/load music from itunes and upload mp3’s on other sites. Its all over the internet, You can,t stop it…just deal with it and enjoy the music!

    Reply
      • Visitor
        Visitor

        Look at metalica, they stopped napster, but that didnt stop music sharing… you would have to shut down the internet…good luck with that …

        Reply
        • Visitor
          Visitor

          “you would have to shut down the internet”
          No no no, that’s just old school pirate speak — you’re confusing the web with the criminal sites.
          Fortunately, it’s now possible to block, choke or close these sites, thanks to the new internationally coordinated war against IP-theft.
          Everything’s changing right now…

          Reply
          • Visitor
            Visitor

            Sorry to disappoint you jw, but music sales are going up for the first time since 1999 and piracy’s going down.
            Brand new study shows the impact of the MegaUpload shutdown on movie sales — 6-10% higher revenues in 12 countries:
            “Thus our findings show that the closing of a major online piracy site can increase digital media sales, and by extension we provide evidence that Internet movie piracy displaces digital film sales”
            Source:
            http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2229349
            Stay tuned for more awesome news…

          • visitor again
            visitor again

            so you will stop youtubetomp3, and all teh other media converter sites too?
            whats in it for you? why do you care so much? just let everyone listen to the music and enjoy and have fun…the real artists are still making money on touring and ticket sales…. and as a matter of fact, the small time bands who i would never listen to in the first place,are now getting exposure, and now i listen to them….its actually good for music…but anyway, i hope you have fun trying to stop people from listening to music….

          • Visitor
            Visitor

            “why do you care so much?”
            1) Because I love art, literature and music from the bottom of my heart.
            2) Because I love the fans. Why do you want to take their music away? Nothing’s more lovely than a great new song. But the songwriter obviously has to find another job if s/he isn’t paid.
            3) Because I respect the hundreds of thousands talented people who lose their jobs because of piracy.

          • David
            David

            “The real artists are still making money on touring and ticket sales”
            It is kind of insensitive, not to say plain stupid, to raise that tired old argument in comments on an article about David Bowie. Do you really expect a man in his 60s with a heart condition to tour until he drops dead? Or maybe you don’t consider him a ‘real artist’.
            The ‘tour and t-shirts’ brigade always forget that there are many good artists who are not in a position to tour or are just not great live performers.
            Beyond which, they greatly overestimate the profitability of touring for any but a handful of popular commercial stars. A breakdown of income is seldom publicly available, but Zoe Keating, who is an excellent but not commercially popular artist, has said that about 25% of her gross income is from live performance, and since her costs are greater in that area, the proportion of net income must be even lower.

          • Visitor
            Visitor

            “”The real artists are still making money on touring and ticket sales”
            It is kind of insensitive, not to say plain stupid, to raise that tired old argument in comments on an article about David Bowie. Do you really expect a man in his 60s with a heart condition to tour until he drops dead?”
            And how about all the non-performing songwriters who write the hits we all love?
            Or non-performing bands like The Beatles?
            The problem is ignorance. The solution is education. Facts are boring, but we have to repeat them again and again…

  8. Bloggulator
    Bloggulator

    Grooveshark and Spotify are of the same criminality as the looters you see after a natural disaster, or simple shoplifters. One law for one, and another for others… duplicity and flouting the law is the order of the day in the world of business. Ethics are over.

    Reply
    • Visitor
      Visitor

      Let’s not lose the perspective here…
      Spotify is worthless seen from the artist’s point of view but it’s not a criminal site.

      Reply
  9. ya
    ya

    knock knock viacom v youtube…
    will we ever get satisfaction from the courts, or are music rights totally fucking dead vs big tech?

    Reply
    • L Ron Hoover
      L Ron Hoover

      No, unless laws are changed and
      Yes, right now and for the foreseeable future big tech carries a much bigger stick
      My advice to you is to give up music get a nice job selling t-shirts somewhere.

      Reply
      • Visitor
        Visitor

        “My advice to you is to give up music get a nice job selling t-shirts somewhere”
        Because music sales went up for the first time since 1999? 🙂
        Perhaps you should offer that job to the Piracy Industry fat cats instead…

        Reply

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