We would first like to express our condolences over the recent passing
of Billboard magazine editor Timothy White. Tim’s passing on June 27 was
a devastating loss to the musicians’ community. Tim had shown incredible
courage in world of publishing by keeping a watchful eye on an industry
that ultimately supported the magazine’s livelihood. He will be sorely missed.
We’ve all heard the stories criticizing major record label contracts. Anecdotally we understand that many of the deals signed by artists are bad, but what does “bad” mean and just how bad are these deals? More importantly, how exactly are they bad? In this Major Label Contract Critique, FMC asked over a dozen major label and artist attorneys to identify which major label contract clauses and standard industry deductions are considered to be the most onerous. The document quotes ACTUAL contract language from ACTUAL record label contracts, with care taken to preserve the doublespeak that makes the documents so confusing. Finally, we translated these onerous and confusing contract clauses into PLAINENGLISH and paired them with easy-to-understand critiques in the hopes that even those who are completely unfamiliar with the music business can understand the implications that result from signing a standard major label deal. This is a first step in criticizing traditional record contract language. read more
When my band signed a recording contract with a major label in 1989, we weren’t particularly naive. We were graduates of Ivy League schools, we’d been writing, recording and touring together for over five years, and we’d already released two albums; one by ourselves, and one on an independent label. We thought we had a pretty good handle on the deal we were making.
When my band signed a recording contract with a major label in 1989, we weren’t particularly naive. We were graduates of Ivy League schools, we’d been writing, recording and touring together for over five years, and we’d already released two albums; one by ourselves, and one on an independent label. We thought we had a pretty good handle on the deal we were making. read more
We’ve got an incredibly exciting event planned, The Future of Music Policy
Summit Conference — with the likes of Senator Orrin Hatch, Chuck D, Hilary
Rosen of the RIAA, Michael Robertson of MP3.com, Leonardo Chiariglione
of SDMI, Bill Ivey of the NEA, William Kennard of the FCC, John Perry
Barlow of the EFF, and more than 50 others - Not to mention the 300 musicians
we plan to have in the audience! For a full list go to http://www.futureofmusic.org
and download the PDF for panelists
This newsletter is dedicated entirely to the Policy Summit. After January
12, when the Summit is just a beautiful memory, we’ll go back to full-time
advocating on behalf of musicians!
Why the Results Could be Underwhelming -- Or Even Harmful -- For Artists
Sunday, October 15, 2000
I thoroughly enjoyed my recent conversation with Matt Goyer, President
and CEO of Fairtunes.
I think it’s great to see individuals experimenting with different models
within the music industry. Their ideas have been met with much enthusiasm
in the fan community, and with much interest in the music industry. People
like the idea of paying artists directly, cutting out middle men, and
being absolved of their Napster guilt. read more
FMC urges the U.S. Copyright Office to be wary of efforts by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) to establish themselves as the sole and exclusive collection agent for Digital Performance Royalties for sound recordings. Instead, the Coalition has proposed that an independent body would be the more appropriate vehicle to collect and distribute these funds as well as other monies including the Audio Home Recording Act of 1992 royalties. read more
Orange Alley is a company built by musicians, for musicians. FMC’s Jenny Toomey interviews President and Chief Executive Officer Mark Erickson about their BootLegal program they were still one of the first companies that both facilitated file sharing and had a built-in structure of incentives to encourage folks to eventually pay for the music. read more