But Wait: Isn’t the iCloud Just Reinforcing Bad Habits?

  • Save

Look up: it’s music content in the cloud, and licensed content at that! Major labels (and others) will finally get their payday from Apple’s iCloud, but doesn’t this simply reinforce horrible consumer habits?

Or, reinforce an industry approach that has largely failed at monetizing what consumers really want?

That’s the argument coming out of Beyond Oblivion, which is protesting the way these cloud launches are happening.  Because even if rights owners are properly licensed, this is merely making billions of stolen music files more accessible.  And that’s supposed to be a solution?  “We can’t enrich the music industry, we can’t enrich artists, we can’t enrich life, society and culture by continually going to the same 5% who already pay for the music,” Beyond Oblivion CEO Adam Kidron said.  “We have to go to a new market.”

In other words, if the old system was broken, then cloud-enabling everything and demanding a toll isn’t a step forward. “Our model is essentially very simple, we license all of the music in the world, we put it up in the cloud then we license all the devices to play all of the music in the world,” Kidron explained.  “The device licenses are very reasonably priced to enable manufacturers to actually embed the price into the device.”

There’s a huge amount – like, nearly $90 million in capital – riding on Beyond Oblivion, and as you would expect the vision is grandiose.  Yet Beyond isn’t the only group looking at the cloud with monetization, protection, and control in mind.  But the nagging question is whether Beyond is already toast, thanks to massive, less-controlled, and less-complicated launches from Amazon, Google, and now, Apple.  The flying horse may already be out of the stable.