Streaming?

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Brian Peacock
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Re: Streaming?

Post by Brian Peacock » Tue Jun 04, 2019 11:24 am

As you've demonstrated, 'exposure' on Spotify is good for the listener - I've suggested how it isn't that good for the artist and that it's actually the platform users' attention which is being milked for profit, of which artists see precious little. But I guess if you say it's correct then...
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Clinton Huxley » 21 Jun 2012 » 14:10:36 GMT
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Re: Streaming?

Post by pErvinalia » Tue Jun 04, 2019 11:30 am

We're going around in circles. I'm not going to keep making the point.
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Re: Streaming?

Post by Brian Peacock » Tue Jun 04, 2019 11:48 am

Yeah, there's no need because there really is no point, you said you were correct and that, dear reader, should be an end of the matter. :tea:


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Clinton Huxley » 21 Jun 2012 » 14:10:36 GMT
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Re: Streaming?

Post by Tero » Tue Jun 04, 2019 12:24 pm

pErvinalia wrote:
Tue Jun 04, 2019 10:23 am
They get more now than they would have. I'm talking about small artists. Larger ones get screwed, but they're larger, so they make more anyway.
The songs have just become an advertisement for a tour. If a song gets used in a movie soundtrack, they get a little more out of it.
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Re: Streaming?

Post by Sean Hayden » Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:46 am

>> Hey Peacock, I subscribed. Do me a favor and give me a shoutout on your next show!
shut up

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Re: Streaming?

Post by JimC » Thu Jun 06, 2019 6:09 am

All you young folk (and I include Brian here) know all sorts of techie shit that is double dutch to me... :nono:

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Re: Streaming?

Post by NineBerry » Thu Jun 06, 2019 9:00 am

pErvinalia wrote:
Tue Jun 04, 2019 2:27 am
What we need is a spotify of movies. With the disappearance of video stores it's impossible to get anything other than current favourites on Netflix and the like.
There already is with Amazon Video. You can rent most movies and series (even older ones, even really old ones) for a few Euro. The choice is much better than in your video stores of old.

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Re: Streaming?

Post by NineBerry » Thu Jun 06, 2019 9:08 am

pErvinalia wrote:
Tue Jun 04, 2019 10:19 am
I've been keen for years to rewatch a movie I saw once that I really enjoyed. But without video stores there's no way to get it (other than probably buying it outright). It not popular enough for either torrents or netflix et al. It's a fucked situation.

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1372686/
I could watch that for free on Amazon Prime or (if I weren't a Prime customer), I could rent it for 2 EUR on Amazon Video for Streaming. That is in Germany. You could check on Amazon Video if it is available in DownThere, too.

Renting movies for streaming on Amazon Video works like this: After you rent the movie, you have 30 days to start watching the movie. Then after starting the move, you have 48 hours to watch it.
Last edited by NineBerry on Thu Jun 06, 2019 9:16 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Streaming?

Post by NineBerry » Thu Jun 06, 2019 9:14 am

I don't use streaming for music. I want to have the music as files so that I can be sure to never lose access and to be able to use them anywhere without problems. I buy albums of better known artists as downloads mostly on Amazon or Google Play. Most of the smaller labels are now present on bandcamp. So, I can get the exotic stuff on bandcamp.

With movies or series, this is different, because I will rarely want to rewatch them, so I don't care about owning them. You can find most stuff on Amazon Video these days. I also subscribe to Amazon Prime and Netflix.

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Re: Streaming?

Post by pErvinalia » Thu Jun 06, 2019 10:59 am

NineBerry wrote:
pErvinalia wrote:
Tue Jun 04, 2019 2:27 am
What we need is a spotify of movies. With the disappearance of video stores it's impossible to get anything other than current favourites on Netflix and the like.
There already is with Amazon Video. You can rent most movies and series (even older ones, even really old ones) for a few Euro. The choice is much better than in your video stores of old.
Probably not available in Australia.

What form does the movie come in - physical or digital?
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Re: Streaming?

Post by Brian Peacock » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:06 am

NineBerry wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 9:08 am
I could watch that for free on Amazon Prime...
It's not free. You pay for it, and your attention is farmed by Amazon to generate ad revenue which goes straight in their back pocket. No third-party is advertising to you when you listen to a CD and the songwriter/composer and artist are more likely to get paid for their work from your purchase than through a streaming service.

Not that you're saying this, but the idea that music (or movies, games, etc) are basically free needs to be challenged if people want to stop the entertainment industry becoming a corporate-controlled creative ghost-town defined entirely by an accountancy algorithm.


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Clinton Huxley » 21 Jun 2012 » 14:10:36 GMT
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Re: Streaming?

Post by Tero » Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:16 am

It's all part of a scam. Everything in US is now a scam. Monopoly rules, with three choices the same. Cell plans, healthcare, streaming.
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Re: Streaming?

Post by NineBerry » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:12 pm

Brian Peacock wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 11:06 am
NineBerry wrote:
Thu Jun 06, 2019 9:08 am
I could watch that for free on Amazon Prime...
It's not free. You pay for it, and your attention is farmed by Amazon to generate ad revenue which goes straight in their back pocket. No third-party is advertising to you when you listen to a CD and the songwriter/composer and artist are more likely to get paid for their work from your purchase than through a streaming service.
There are no ads on Amazon Video. And I pay for it because of the subscription fee. I meant to say that as a subscriber I can watch that without paying an extra amount.

For music, in the traditional model, the artists usually have a contract with a label. The label usually pays money to the artists independent of the number of CD sales. Musicians have been moaning for decades that the labels and the shops get all the money from CD sales and the artists get very little. I don't really see a big difference to streaming. With streaming, the streaming service pays money to the label just as revenue from CD sales goes to the label. It is then the question of what the contract between the artist and the label looks like, what money the artist gets.

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Re: Streaming?

Post by Rum » Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:41 pm

Streaming also results in a potentially wider audience from little known bands. I often listen to ‘those who listened to X also listened to Y’ (or some equivalent). I have discovered and downloaded quite a lot of stuff I would not have otherwise and the band a few more pennies as a result.

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Re: Streaming?

Post by Brian Peacock » Thu Jun 06, 2019 2:17 pm

Traditionally, when music was reproduced on disc, tape, or CD the writer/composers had to grant a licence to allow their work to be reproduced. I say 'allow' but they had no choice about who might cover or reproduce their work (different to simply copying the origion), that compulsory licence was invoked automatically on the production of a 'Notice of Intent' (NOI) from the party wishing to use the music, but it meant that the work couldn't be used without paying the writer/composer what's known as mechanical copyrights.

If a label produced a disc, tape, or CD they, as the reproducers of the work, were still obliged to pay the composer/writer for that licence which, in UK and US law at least, could not be waived in a contract. Labels got around this by basically keeping artists in the dark about it, or by trying (and mostly succeeding) to offset that obligatory outlay against 'administration fees'.

Streaming services, most notably Apple via iTunes, addressed this by arguing in case and counter case that the subscription model only granted a user a right to listen to a file - they weren't selling a copy of the work but merely access to it and therefore as no work was being physically reproduced and distributed - there were no 'mechanicals' to play. Other streamers soon cottoned on a began arguing the same, maintaining that the subscription model is a party-to-party agreement essentially no different to saying, "If you pop round I'll play you a track off that new CD if you buy me a coffee." As similar approach was taken to publishing rights.

This is somewhat ironic, because during the 90s music pirating bonanza the big corporate interests successfully lobbied for clarification in law such that sharing non-physical copies of music files amounted to reproduction and distribution.

Anyway, with the larger global players like Sony the streaming companies have by-and-large avoided protracted and expensive legal battles on multiple fronts and instead have entered into negotiated 'returns agreements' where streamers promise to pay an agreed amount and then let Sony etc sort out how the artist will be paid out of those returns - which is probably fine if you're Jay-Z, Taylor Swift or the Foos etc and can afford to hire the best lawyers.

Anyway, these legal shenanigans had been going on for well over 10 years when in in January 2018 the U.S. Copyright Royalty Board, a body some defered statutory powers, ruled that Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon and other streamers must pay songwriters and publishers for each and every use of their work. As things stand Apple, Spotify, Google, Pandora, and Amazon are appealing that decision with part of their case resting on the fact that their ongoing negotiated arrangements with music publishers like Sony and online distributors like CDBaby effectively mean they are meeting that obligation and really shouldn't have to pay twice for the same thing.

Nonetheless, in light of the CRB ruling, and while those appeals are ongoing, streaming services still have to meet the conditions of the ruling, so they've outsourced that requirement by contracting third-party companies to distribute those obligatory returns. In some cases these third-party entities are subsidiaries of the big streamers themselves even if they are discrete legal entities for the purposes of the law - kind of keeps it in the family, as it were. This third-party service essentially boils down to, say, Spotify deciding how much they owe in unpaid rights, giving that and a list of plays to another company, and saying, "Here you go, you sort it out."

U.S. law requires that all mechanicals are paid to the writer/composer one month in arrears and by the 20th of the month. These third party firms have the job of identifying the writer/composer, matching the plays to the rights owners and distributing the returns. On the whole these firms failed spectacularly and miserably to even scratch the surface of return the majority of the unpaid rights. In response to this bands with more tenacious management -- typically on the larger labels, like Sony again -- are now either collating their own data on plays and revenues and applying to Spotify etc directly or they employ yet other firms which specialise in doing that for them.

Now, whether you're an obscure Vietnamese experimental noise band or Cold Play (spit!), and regardless of the eventual outcome of the various cases and counter-cases, in order to use a piece music the streaming service has to issue a NOI in order to invoke the compulsory licence. If they don't then they've broken the law, and thus they can be sued for illegal reproduction and use of a copyrighted work. The big streamers have routinely ignored this legal requirement, and continue to do so. Contracting third-parties to issue NOIs retrospectively do not cover them, but trying to take Spotify to court for illegally using your music is not an easy thing to do if you're an obscure Vietnamese experimental noise band.

(EDIT: Another thing worth noting here is that music that pops up on playlist suggestions is predominantly packed with tracked from companies with negotiated agreements with the streaming service and music which Spotify effectively publish themselves - a bit like that 'royalty free' music that Google has started producing and promoting on YouTube recently).

So yes, Spotify et al give 'exposure' to small band, but what they and other streamers are doing is making money from a service which operates to restrict the legal and pecuniary rights of creators. They make millions from streaming music on the subscription 'music-for-free' model and use their market dominance to raise more money and dictate terms.

While selling advertising space and time on a platform built on the labour of writers, composers, and performers Spotify has an estimated worth of $36 billion. In January Spotify alone estimated that they owed $29 million in unpaid mechanical and publishing rights. In April they estimated that amount at $32 million. Every time you stream music from the big players you're unavoidably involved in exploiting the creative, emotional, and physical labour of musicians and artists to generate corporate profits.
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"It isn't necessary to imagine the world ending in fire or ice.
There are two other possibilities: one is paperwork, and the other is nostalgia."

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"This is how humanity ends; bickering over the irrelevant."
Clinton Huxley » 21 Jun 2012 » 14:10:36 GMT
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