Saturday, June 28, 2014

Balkanization of the music industry via Congress

I stopped being a Roseann Cash fan today.  I'm also no longer a fan of Paul Williams either. As I listened to the CSPAN replay of the music licensing hearing Part Deux, I heard two people who overvalued the market value of their creations without regard to the role wide publication had in the size of their holdings.  Now rewind to Pearl Jam. That was another case of extremes, where the publicist exerted ownership of content provided by the artists.

At the hearing, I heard both Cash and Williams whine about how publicists and broadcasters were profiting from their material. They never mentioned how they got their big bucks by being publicized by publicists and broadcasters. Cash went so far as demean publication as "the exposure argument".  Fair market value of any product is determined by market distribution, idiots.

You can't go viral if you don't share.

I'm now hearing Darrel Issa reading Article I Section 8 paragraph 8, one that I've had to cite quite often in other contexts and is probably the only area in which me & Issa agree on.

"The Congress shall have the Power...To promote the Progress of Science and Useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries..."

Emphasis: limited Times. But hold that thought for now.

The songwriters would be nowhere without the performers of their content, and the performers are the copyright holders of their own performances.  Yeah, that ole Balkanization doesn't end there.  Everybody involved in a given production is entitled to their piece, too, and what we now have is a collaborative production denying that the big money isn't in any single one of the components thereof.

I don't have a problem with people getting fair pay for the work they do, nor with the fact that the people who create are the owners of their creation until they sell off the rights to someone else, or die and leave it to progeny.  I have a problem with the Terms and Conditions which require (think Creedence Clearwater Revival now) the artist relinquish rights to their creations AND to their own names (think Prince now) as a CONDITION of a publication contract.  An entire "plantation industry" which is the recording industry was based on this violation of Article I Section I paragraph 8 because those who signed on to such contracts had no standing to make a Supreme Court-tracked legal challenge to such provisions.

The fair market value of a work is determined by the market it's in, and you don't get to market without publication, which includes broadcasting, terrestrial or otherwise. Two standards were mentioned of a fair market..."the 801B" and the "willing buyer/willing seller" standard, and nobody on the panel is happy with either, preferring to pick and choose from both.

SOLUTION:  Read the friggin' Constitution and let the Supremes decide.  They should have decided on the basis of Article I Section 8 paragraph 8 decades ago.

Performers, nobody has a higher value for your performance than your fans, and fans tell other people to get you more fans.  You don't go viral if you don't share and suing your fans cuts your fan market value.  Small market performers have fans just as big as the big performers, but because of limitations on publication, they just don't have as many big fans as the big performers.  They still value the small market product as highly as the big fans of the big market product and that fact alone should bring your overestimation of your big market selves down several pegs to where it belongs.

The gentleman representing the NAB brought up an interesting point about giving independent air play to small groups not under contract to major labels, a person who characterized the complaints of songwriters to wanting to charge broadcasters for giving them free promotion...which is about right, IMHO.  Giving equal free air publicity for bands NOT under contract is what plantation-style recording labels is exactly what the labels have a problem with, and by proxy, all the songwriters they "own" in their stables, as it lets a bunch of air out of their inflated market value they believe themselves to be.

Sorry, folks, but your estimation of your own value contains as much worthless hot air as your egos do. On that topic, Mr. Arlo Guthrie, in regard to your stinginess with your father's material, noting that your father was better with original words than with original music (case in point, "Union Maid", words to the tune of "Red Wing", which he did not write) We The People whose Land this is (your land, my land), are quite anxiously awaiting your death.

You can't go viral if you don't share.  Just ask One Republic, whose music is now like just about everywhere these days.  That's distribution that money just can't buy.






Hey radio people--you can stop looking for a post on ARRL Field Day here. I don't like Field Day or any other similar pile-up type contesting. Forget about it.



Sunday mini-UPDATE: Interesting post about a scientist-sculptor on Facebook today.  It's actually what a map of the time realm would look like, if you can picture in your mind's eye the pattern that occurs inside the object as well...

You can see how the fractal pattern extends over a flat surface;  The object in the lower left quadrant is the fractal algorithm I have previously used as a basic 2-dimensional illustration of how time isn't linear.  All of the objects illustrate the importance of Theta in any given path taken along a time "line" (point-to-point sequential travel). The shortcuts through time's sequences of events is more evident in the other three objects, though, while the upper right object illustrates the principle of parallel universes best, via the center, which also serves as a time/space shortcut illustration.  Same is true of the lower right object. The black area in the middle of the upper right object shows only the shortcut.



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