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(Ultimate   Most musicians say that the internet has helped them make more money, despite P2P programs   ( divider line
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9157 clicks; posted to Main » on 27 Dec 2004 at 6:33 PM (13 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2004-12-27 04:33:58 PM  
we need a "well, no-shiat, chet!" tag (no disrespect, submitter).

I've gotten way into a number of bands, bought albums, DVDs, books, and bought concert tix, etc., thanks to legit / trade-friendly sites (emusic, sharingthegroove, etree, etc.) and "questionable" sites like kazaa and morpheus.
2004-12-27 04:35:10 PM  
Why won't anyone think of Lars Ulrich? It will be weeks before he can get that new layer of gold for his swimmingpool.
2004-12-27 04:38:44 PM  
Should've been an obvious tag.
2004-12-27 04:41:01 PM  
I have at least 10 CDs that I bought because of stuff I heard via P2P. CDs I probably would not have bought otherwise. In fact, it's common to have P2P users give an incorrect name to the file song or performer. I once downloaded a song that was listed as being done by Sublime. After downloading, it was clear that it wasn't them, but the song still rocked. I spent several months trying to find out who it was. Then I bought their CD. It was a band from Portugal that I would have otherwise never even heard of. But that's just me.
2004-12-27 04:46:11 PM  
When CD prices are sold at 5 - 15% over cost, I'll start buying them again. That, and when the RIAA is dissolved.

/never buying a CD again.
2004-12-27 04:47:32 PM  
Good point, I should have mentioned that 7 or 8 of the 10 CDs I meantioned were bought directly from the band's website.
2004-12-27 05:03:52 PM  
I have no idea who Pew Internet And American Life Project are and who they interviewed to define "most". The trend is that most mainstream bands are against P2P software because it hurts record sales which is a big part of their income (no duh). But up-and-coming artist who don't sell a lot of albums anyway don't care, because they make most of their cash comes from live shows. P2P networks only help them spread their music.

Have you ever heard of the obscure, indie band called XYZ?
They're da bomb!

Then you go home and download a few of their songs and find out they might be pretty good. You run out of state to a live show on a school night when your parents don't have a clue. You come home at three in the morning with a t-shirt, a live album, and you're grounded for the next two weeks because Mom and Dad overheard you leave the house. But you don't care because you've got a story to tell all over school and the band has some cash in their pocket, all because you downloaded their songs via Kazaa.
2004-12-27 05:07:03 PM  
The trend is that most mainstream bands are against P2P software because it hurts record sales which is a big part of their income (no duh).

They make very little from album sales... almost .02 cents per dollar of the album. Most money a musician makes is from live performances and merchandise.
2004-12-27 05:18:10 PM  
squishydrew: They make very little from album sales... almost .02 cents per dollar of the album.

Volume, my friend. You are fogetting volume. If a major release album goes platinum...

/wips out handy 4-function caluclator....

1,000,000 times... oh.... $17 an album (agreed?) is...


Good. Now multiply that by $0.02. (I don't know if that's right or not. It's your number.)

$340,000 of total profit for the sale and production of one platnium album. If $340,000 is "very little" for you, then I'm a starving artist. Can you feed me?
2004-12-27 05:41:18 PM  
pshaw: An interesting breakdown. I agree that $340k is no small potatoes ... even a gold record and $170k is no small figure (unless you have a 5 member band and are trying to live in Los Angeles). But I wonder how typical that figure is. How many albums really do go platinum or gold?

/genuine question; would like to see this theory supported
2004-12-27 05:57:36 PM  
img.fark.netView Full Size

P2P is how I learned of many bands that I know love and buy everything of.

/Is still looking for that Melt-Banana 666 EP.
2004-12-27 06:38:44 PM  
rickythepenguin: trade-friendly sites (emusic, sharingthegroove, etree, etc.)

don't forget about 3hive.
2004-12-27 06:40:35 PM  
I suspect the same artists that do not fear P2P apps and the internet are the same ones that get Jack Shiat from the RIAA and SOCAN (in Canada) in the first place.
2004-12-27 06:40:44 PM  
I used to go out every week and buy 3 or 4 CDs. Now, nada.

I haven't purchased a CD in almost a year, since the RIAA started suing people.

I have only downloaded a few songs on P2P and gave up because the quality was hit or miss.

I listen to what I already have (it's a pretty significant collection, anyway) and I'm making my tape and album collection into MP3s to save them.
2004-12-27 06:41:21 PM  
Before P2P:

Friend on opposite coast, other country, etc:

"Hey you should really check out [blank], they're pretty good."

Me: What are they like?
F: Uh, well, sorta like [blank], mixed with [blank], with a [blank] influence.
Me: That sounds like shiat.
F: No, really, it sounds lame, but it works. You should pick up one of their CDs.
M: Eh, I'm not dropping $14 bucks on that.


F: You should check out some [blank]. Download [names of songs], they rock.

Me: OK, [downloads], hey these guys are pretty damn good. Are they touring? What CDs should I get?

2004-12-27 06:41:55 PM  
I first heard of Guster via AudioGalaxy. I went to their concert and the wife and I just had to have this band's music (it was when they were touring with BNL promoting their "Lost and Gone Forever" album). I headed for the swag stand, ready to pay through the nose for a CD sold at a concert.

They only charged 10 bucks. I've never downloaded a Guster MP3, because they don't try to bleed me for music.

[/Gusterrhoid for life]
2004-12-27 06:42:41 PM  
DMentia777: How many albums really do go platinum or gold?

I dunno. And good luck to anyone finding that kind of statistic. It might be easier to ask "How many licks does it take to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop?"

But I wonder how typical that figure is.

That's an easier question. Google Answers to the Rescue! You might as well quite reading this thread and click on that link. It slams anything else I could write.

In brief, if the average album cost $16.98 at retail price, then $1.99 will find it's way back to the artist's pocket to split amongst the band. It looks like my estimation is a lot less than the real amount.

Hopes this helps.
2004-12-27 06:42:50 PM  
I didn't get The Wall for christmas like i i borrowed my friend's copy and ripped it. Thats the way to get music.
2004-12-27 06:43:05 PM  
I don't buy many CDs, but I bought a Weird Al CD when his folks died - I wouldn't have done so had I not used P2P since I'd never really heard any of his songs until I downloaded them.
2004-12-27 06:43:15 PM  
I learned everything from

/as she's wearing her 'Raq' sweatshirt
2004-12-27 06:47:40 PM  
I can'te recall the last CD I bought...I think it might have been Pigface's "New High in Low".
Three years ago or so, I'd say.
2004-12-27 06:47:47 PM  
Is it just me, or does this "" have the exact same layout scheme as
2004-12-27 06:48:02 PM  
How else would I have discovered Sigur Ros and Death Cab For Cutie? Same goes for In Flames and Borknagar.

/guess that makes me an indie-metalhead?
//thank god for p2p
2004-12-27 06:48:22 PM  
I've noticed this long ago... the artists never complain.. it's the damn greedy record companies
2004-12-27 06:49:45 PM  

$340,000 of total profit for the sale and production of one platnium album. If $340,000 is "very little" for you, then I'm a starving artist. Can you feed me?

Even so, that's to be shared between the whole band.
Before taxes.

How often do you think a band sells platinum? Doesn't sound like much of a living, to me!

You would think a band who sold platinum would be rich. No such thing, according to your maths, they'd probably earn a year's wages for a 'normal' person. Then what!? You can't do that every year.

The sad truth is even big selling artists don't really make that much money until their 3 year record contract is over and they get a decent share (or all of) their gross profits. All that money goes to the record companies and indirectly to the many other bands which end up losing money.

..Or in the case of Mariah Carey, they sign a minimum fee deal and proceed to bomb spectacularly.
2004-12-27 06:50:27 PM  
Last CD I bought: The Best of the Alan Parsons Project.

2004-12-27 06:51:10 PM  
The issue here is that the RIAA doesn't get that mp3's and the internet is the new radio. Untill they realize this they're going to simply thrash out at the world and sue their customers untill they're out of business.
2004-12-27 06:51:33 PM  
For anyone starting out, the promotion of your music out ways the pittance you'd receive from a record company. My band encourages any and all use (free or otherwise) of our music just to get it out. As many groups / labels do, we've given away hundreds of Cd's to radio stations and eaten the cost. We've given songs to other labels putting together compilation CD's, and to game producers for soundtracks. All it gets us is one or two people more at an out of town show. Major labels can get farked.
2004-12-27 06:52:00 PM  
I actually met Alan Parsons a few times by chance. All I can really tell you about him though is I beat him at a pool game and he likes his wine. =)

And to tell you the truth, I think that's the last CD I actually bought too, which is scary.
2004-12-27 06:52:35 PM  
I've bought music that I otherwise wouldn't have even looked at, because I could hear it free. (Ex: Kasabian)

I've decided against buying music that I otherwise would have wasted money on, because I could hear it free and it sucked.

Conclusion: The internet will make you more money if you are good, and will lose you money of you suck.
2004-12-27 06:55:27 PM  

No, $340K is not chicken feed. However, that's not all money that goes to the artist. They will almost certainly have thousands and thousands of dollars in advance money to pay back to the recording company, so let's take about half of the $340K away right off the bat, which leaves us with $170K. Now, if they're going to tour, there's money that's going to have to be fronted for those costs too - the record company generally doesn't pay those, the artist does, but we'll keep things simple and assume they don't tour. Now, let's also assume that the artist in question is a four-piece band. $170K divided four ways is $42,500, which is not a half-bad gross salary (don't forget taxes!!) for someone working as a musician, but wait!!! They still have two more albums to produce under their contract, and judging from the costs to produce the first album, they're already in debt again once they go into the studio for the second. A similar situation exists for film actors and crew when working under a contract tied to net profits - the studio can always manipulate the numbers to show that even though they had a $200 million dollar opening weekend, the film either lost money or made very little, robbing the artist/crew of their rightful earnings.

Screw both the RIAA and MPAA - it disgusts me that they have the gall to say they're working for the benefit of artists when it's so blatantly obvious that the opposite is true. Support your local indie label that doesn't try to rape the artist.
2004-12-27 06:55:52 PM  
Though one must ask:

Who was surveyed? Is it a bunch of college kids who play? Or are these professionals who actually make a career out of music?

I'm sure the question was asked in the survey. It was done by a reputable organization.

Still doesn't answer the idea suggested years ago of opt-in for musicians. Let them choose if P2P is a method they want to employ.

If P2P helped professional musicians make money, they would have created their own network by now. The cost is so minimal (one could hack up a basic one in only a few hours as an average programmer... forget about what a few people could do in a few weeks).

I'd bet it helps the amatures quite a bit...

But I don't know of anyone who has bought an actual CD (not including CD-R's), or even attended a concert in the past decade. These days you can find any concert online within hours of the event.
2004-12-27 06:56:10 PM  
Kinda makes you wonder how much longer we can keep trying to force the old rules of limited-supply market capitalism onto an environment where replications are effectively unlimited after the original creation, doesn't it?

To me, it's like watching creationists vainly pin their entire moral worldview to an idea that is hopelessly obsolete. It would be funny, if these groups weren't powerful enough to be dangerous in their death thoes.

/meh. I feel bad for authors, though.
2004-12-27 06:57:32 PM  
I've always wondered how these people on "Cribs" who I've never heard of that have one big album and now live like kings can afford it...

/Predicts a lot of these people selling their mansions and filing for bankruptcy in a couple of years
2004-12-27 06:57:34 PM  
The internet is the primary reason why I buy several CDs most months, it's where I've found 90% of all the bands I listen to.
2004-12-27 06:58:12 PM  
I never would've discovered Nightwish, Kamelot, Symphony X, Sonata Arctica, Stratovarius, Lunatica, Edguy and a million other bands if it weren't for p2p. The radio stations here in Vegas will never play them, and MTV most definately won't, so how else do you find about them? P2P to the rescue! And they've earned many dollars from me in CD's/Shirts/misc stuff.

/powermetal head
2004-12-27 06:58:59 PM  
Like anyone in a position of authority will take note of this... and likewise, as if file sharing will ever stop no matter the amount of money they throw at it.

It's very akin to the drug war.

Looks pretty on paper, but fails miserably in the lab.
2004-12-27 06:59:03 PM  
Matrix Flavored Wasabi:
i have that ep if you want it =]
2004-12-27 06:59:29 PM  
lindseyp: Doesn't sound like much of a living, to me!

That's right. An artist probably can't live by just the profit of record sales. That's why there's the whole gambit of other merchandise you can buy, plus live shows. But to have that source of income evaporate due to 15 lines of Python code is a massive blow to major artist.
2004-12-27 06:59:40 PM  
$2.00 may go "to" the band, but the record companies charge them for the studio time, the CD pressing, most avertising, etc etc etc. Essentially almost no artist actually makes any money off CDs until they've put out quite a few good ones and got the chance to negotiate a new contract, or ditch their label for their own

I can't understand "artists" who sign with labels when the above info is so easy to find if you look for it. You're going to have to make 2-3 hit records before you see a single cent of money that you don't "owe" to someone
2004-12-27 07:02:43 PM  
This may or may not be bull that it actually MAKES money, but it's time to give up, whether it makes or loses the artist's money. It's been established that you can, with minimum risk, get music much more easily than normal, and for free. People aren't going to give that up unless they're faced with near-certain prosecution (or even fifty-fifty chances of prosecution) for downloading a single song; and the industry just doesn't have that much money. And that's actually a good thing. It's not seriously hurting your finances, if it isn't actually helping them, and fighting it WILL hurt your wallet.
2004-12-27 07:03:01 PM  
cgremlin: However, that's not all money that goes to the artist.

Yes, I realize this.
Yes, the refresh button is my friend.
2004-12-27 07:04:11 PM  
i download music now exclusively, and i will until the prices come down to reasonable prices. that and when the riaa bankrupts.
2004-12-27 07:04:30 PM  
i have no guilt over downloading music as i believe its there for everyone no matter how much business is involved. most bands are just happy to make music. everyone wants to make a buck off something they enjoy doing, obviously, but the second you start making music strictly for the money then its over. anyway, as cliched as an argument as this is: the bands make most of their cash on touring anyway and as such, most bands who are really well known have a fulltime job when the amps and lights go off.

maybe i'm a hopeless romantic when it comes to this debate as i see this as a musician with no deal who just wants to be heard but you should really be doing it for "the love of the game" no matter what.
2004-12-27 07:06:29 PM  
Notice nobody is going on about discovering the latest Britney/Xtina/Any-other-flavour-of-the-week track? I think the record companies really fear an educated customer base.
2004-12-27 07:08:00 PM  
mp3 encoding destroys sound quality so its not an exact copy, but when any of the lossless formats become the norm there will be a hell of alot more lawsuits happenin.
2004-12-27 07:09:56 PM  
Anyone who says freely distributing music is a bad business plan needs to read up on the Grateful Dead. Say what you want about those guys, but they let anyone who wanted to tape and share a show do so. they also make about 30 million a year off of cds, concerts, and merchandise. sure, hyperproduced pop crap may suffer from p2p, but real bands make money off of touring.
2004-12-27 07:10:52 PM  
I think the UK had an all-time sales record this year. They also have something going on worth listening to. Not sure how they could make the case p2p is killing music.

P2P = Radio On Demand. Copyright laws are bought and paid for by media company crooks. It is sad most artists are so gutless in speaking out.
2004-12-27 07:11:18 PM  
the music industry already knows p2p sharing has increased sales and is awesome for business by increasing exposure. all this hoopla is just so they want to get more laws passed in their favor. same thing occured when cassette tapes and stuff hit the market, which put in place laws which actually add an extra royalty tax to devices and media (so at the time was all your tape players, blank cassettes tapes, etc) which goes straight to the music industry to cover the "just in case you plan on using this stuff to copy music we own". of course it also means an independant musician has to pay these taxes to put their own music on media to distribute. they just don't like it that their is a means (the internet) for independant musicians to distribute their music without paying extra taxes and not going through the honest airwaves practices or other riaa dominated means of distribution.
2004-12-27 07:12:21 PM  
I'm a huge Evanescence fan. I think a huge chunk of their fan base was because of MP3. A friend of mine sent me a garbled MP3 of their first single and I was on a hunt for a clean copy. From that, I found their first album and pulled a few songs off of it. Then their old production company sold out two weeks later and that thing soared to $250.00 on eBay.

A month later, they started a small US tour through bars and such. Saw them for $5.00 and it was a killer show, even though I froze my nuts off because it was 12 degrees in February and we waited almost 2 hours to get inside.

The one thing that stuck in my mind was that "Fallen" had not been released yet. It was a week and a half before it was going to hit the shelves. Amy Lee asked the crowd how so many people knew all the words to the songs they were playing when there was only one song on the radio. Even though I had all the songs on MP3, I bought the album the day it came out and since then it's gone quad-platinum.

I truly believe that MP3 is what propelled them past being a one-hit wonder.

And I'm with Xaignar. I don't buy a CD without pulling some songs from it anymore. I just bought Green Day's new CD after hearing 5 good tracks off of Kazaa.
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