While scanning through my RSS feeds on my phone this evening, I came across a good article over at audio4cast. This article then led me to another excellent article at the Future of Music Coalition’s website called “Principles for Artist Compensation in New Business Models.”
They are both a few months old, but still drive home some interesting viewpoints that are relevant to my business idea I posted about last week and that I am currently developing (which got great feedback! thanks again to everyone that contributed).
Key points from audio4cast’s article:
“While record companies may be getting paid from all the new online music services, those payments are not necessarily making their way to the artists’ pockets.”
“…there’s a significant struggle brewing between record labels and artists, which has become aggravated by declining cd sales and new online music business models.”
Key points from FOMC.org’s article:
“Legitimate digital business models and legitimate digital music marketplaces are critical to musicians’ ability to promote, distribute and earn compensation for their music.”
“The history of the music industry is littered with stories of artists who have not been paid anything for the sales of their recordings. Typical major label contracts only give musicians 10 to 15 percent of the revenue from sales, and that’s after the label has recouped all the costs of recording, manufacturing and promotion. It’s no wonder that many musicians never see a penny in sales royalties.”
“This principle simply says that revenue generated by new models for music access or delivery should be fairly shared between rightsholders and artists — after all, they created the music that provides the value for these new business models.”
“…services should be able to experiment with variable pricing and offer different marketing opportunities depending on the level of the artist or based on the size of catalogue…”
Do you think we will ever see the day when the majority of mainstream musicians and performers own 50-100% of the rights and control to their music? I have considerable doubts, but something’s got to give. And in some ways, it has already started happening with the advent of companies like ReverbNation, TopSpin, InGrooves and many more aimed towards helping artists reach large audiences in cutting-edge and unorthodox ways.
I am definitely excited to see what the future has in store for the music industry. UPDATE (12/18/10): Still excited.
[Image credit: Click here]