John, you are so biased!!! ;)
Posted by: Big Doggie ()
Date: February 14, 2001 06:11AM

I know you did not want to get into a point by point debate on this but ...

The vast majority of MP3s available via Napster ARE NOT CD quality. The quality is mostly 128 bps which is radio quality, not CD quality. Don't believe me? Take a CD from one of your bands, rip it to 128 MP3s, convert back to WAV, burn a CDR, and then do a listening comparison between the original and the CDR. I did precisely this while waiting for CDNOW to deliver the new Sammy Hagar CD.

Do you know of a band that sold only 1000 units, but had over 500,000 Napster downloads? Has this really happened? Or is this just a unsubstantiated fear running through the music industry?

You mentioned radio play. How hard is it for you to convince a radio station to even listen to one your artist CDs (prior to any serious consideration of adding it to their play list)?

From my limited perspective, radio air play is a game completely rigged by the major labels. I hear it all the time in the local Houston stations. For example, the local modern rock station play the Blondie single Maria (back in 99) in heavy rotation for exactly two weeks and then would not even play it. My guess is that after two weeks there were no requests to hear it so they dropped it. But to get into the heavy rotation for two weeks in absence of requests, I suspect payola (which is a game the smaller, independent record companies can not afford to play.)

If we can accept that payola is still an integral part of the music biz, how does this benefit anybody but the record companies. Recalling Courtney Love's congressional testimony, bands only really make money if they sell multi-platinum. Without that, the bands owe money to the record companies for production costs, studio time, touring, and promotion costs (i.e. payola).

The bottom line is that the major record companies use payola to gain exposure for their newer bands and to indirectly deny exposure for bands on smaller labels. The bottom line should be that the quality of the product should determine whether a band makes it or not. Radio listeners are not even given the choice. Thus, the big losers here are both the radio listeners (potential CD consumers) and the bands.

Another consideration is that radio listeners do not directly pay to listen to their radio. Specifically, they do not pay the artist any royalties. Thus, the end consumer is not wont to pay to hear the music played. Given this and the current Internet reality, the consumer will be biased toward continuing the free lunch. And there is no way for the record companies to stop the free lunch.

The future for record companies is even more bleak when broad band is considered. Broad band will allow for WAV files to be shared by everyone. Thus, consumers will not have to buy the CD to get CD quality.

Shutting down Napster is like the major record companies rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. The record companies should switch from fighting a lost cause to embracing Napster or some form of file sharing. Since the record companies are used to driving the whole process, I doubt they will have this epiphany.

What could Kivel Records provide in terms of file sharing that Napster currently can not? Or how can Kivel Records embrace Napster and find a win-win scenario? They could provide their own subscription based (or pay as you go) Napster server for their artists that is always up and running. That way, a consumer could be guaranteed to find all of what they are looking for and not have to get lucky. I am very sure this would sell in the US since we are not a patient lot and have zero attention span (thanks to MTV ;). Kivel could also provide files of lesser quality free for promotional purposes.

John, I suggest you do an experiment. Take one of your artist's CDs that is at the end of its sales cycle and pimp it on Napster every time you are logged on. I think you will be very surprised at the results or at least minimally educated about Napster's ramifications toward your bottom line. I do know you will "hear" from a lot of other Napster users via Napster's IM. You will be surprised to find out how many people don't know about this site or your own site or where to buy your product. It would be interesting to know if by doing this that the sale cycle is extended or has an unexpected spike and to know if the good will you are showing will increase sales on the next new release of the artist.

Big Dog

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SubjectViewsWritten ByPosted
Napster ruling. 252Surfpunk02/13/2001 05:40AM
Re: Napster ruling. 184 Mike 02/13/2001 07:19AM
Re: Napster ruling. 159 Big Doggie 02/13/2001 07:26AM
Re: Napster ruling. 146 Matt 02/13/2001 01:33PM
Not a strong argument 187 Misterpomp 02/13/2001 05:51PM
Re: Napster ruling...KIVEL .02? 159 CARL 02/13/2001 11:55PM
Re: Napster ruling...KIVEL .02? 146 KIvel 02/14/2001 12:52AM
Re: Napster ruling...KIVEL .02? 168 Matt 02/14/2001 01:17AM
Re: Napster ruling...KIVEL .02? 167 CARL 02/14/2001 02:48AM
Re: Napster ruling...KIVEL .02? 145 CARL 02/14/2001 02:46AM
Re: Napster ruling...KIVEL .02? 179 Peter M. Bietenholz 02/14/2001 03:11AM
John, you are so biased!!! ;)156 Big Doggie 02/14/2001 06:11AM
Re: John, you are so biased!!! ;) 142 Matt 02/14/2001 01:26PM
Re: John, you are so biased!!! ;) 145 Matt 02/14/2001 01:51PM
Re: Big Dog 152 Danny Danzi 02/16/2001 07:56PM
You can't say that ... 192 Son of MisterPomp 02/14/2001 04:24AM
Re: You can't say that ... 192 CARL 02/14/2001 01:22PM
You can't say that... 166 Misterpomp 02/13/2001 05:53PM
Re: You can't say that... 139 Big Doggie 02/14/2001 04:09AM
Re: You can't say that... 170MIKE02/15/2001 12:08AM
Re: You can't say that... 159 Mad Dog 02/15/2001 03:25AM
That doesn't make sense... 164 Misterpomp 02/15/2001 05:04AM
Re: Napster ruling...KIVEL .02? 195 Precious Honey 02/14/2001 02:21AM
Re: Napster ruling...KIVEL .02? 146 CARL 02/14/2001 02:54AM
Napster Alternatives 149 Richard 02/13/2001 09:37AM
Re: Napster Alternatives 181 Precious Honey 02/13/2001 11:44AM
Re: Napster Alternatives 168Big Doggie02/13/2001 01:15PM
Re: Napster Alternatives 140 Richard 02/13/2001 05:17PM
Re: Napster Alternatives 169 Precious Honey 02/14/2001 12:03AM

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