Top Manager: Anti-Piracy “Clearly a Waste of Time…”

Forget about disagreements with fans and artists.

Many of the top executives in the music industry are at loggerheads with one another.  It’s the perfect storm of disagreement over disruption, and the latest example comes from top manager Peter Jenner (best known for his days with Pink Floyd).

Label groups worldwide are still fighting a war against piracy, across several fronts.  That includes courtroom battles with companies, individuals, and ISPs, as well as legislative efforts to force three-strike-style enforcement initiatives.  But all of that is a big “waste of time,” according to outspoken International Music Managers’ Forum (IMMF) president Jenner. “Attempts to stop people copying are clearly a waste of time,” said Jenner. “They are comparable to prohibition in the US in the 1920s.”

Suddenly, Jenner is another member of the ‘copyleft’ brigade, at least according to ASCAP sensibilities.  Jenner excoriated the music establishment for fighting against the “economic reality” of abundance, which is now driving the cost of digital files to zero.  “Copyright is about the right to copy,” Jenner continued.  “We cannot control people’s right to copy if they have computers.”

Okay, solutions please?  Actually, Jenner is advocating a total rewrite of copyright law, and has a few monetization ideas as well.  Jenner pointed to a 1-pound-a-month payment model from Rapidshare, a premium that gives users access to perks like faster downloads. “If we can get 1 pound a month from every [British person] for music… this is getting very close to the current level of revenue for recorded music,” Jenner claimed.