The Current this morning was discussing new legislation that intends to further define and restrict on-line file sharing, amongst other things. Sponsored by Minister of Canadian Heritage Liza Frulla, this is cow-towing to big industry pressures at its worst. Making service providers or software creators liable for content on websites or P2P systems is part of what the legislation is trying to add as party of copyright defense.
The focal point of the conversation on the Current was the right one, however, stating that, yes, the major labels may be feeling some negative impact, but it’s alternative and independant musicians, and ultimately the consumer, who benefit from file sharing. It’s as if, finally, the little guy can compete with Warner Brothers and Sony, and in fact it’s the little guy that’s learned to take advantage of the promotional power that the internet provides. The big guys, frightened of changing their infrastructure or promotional strategies, would rather just shut it all down than try to cope with something they’re really not taking the time to understand.
You see, the reason why the major labels are sucking at the internet promo game is, well, their product sucks. It’s their over-produced, manufactured and overhyped marketing tools (and by that I mean musicians) that ultimately fail them. When a song hits the radio and people take to that song, they want that song, they don’t want an album. When you take a Britney and you write all her songs for her and you compose all her music for her, and you basically assemble a product, well, that’s not really music. People don’t respond to a Jessica Simpson album in the same way they would an album by Fiest. An artist who is truly an artist is writing, composing, and producing their own work on a full album, that authenticity comes across. People would much rather listen to an authentic album than a manufactured one.
Sure some heavily promoted pop star may come up with a great song, but everyone understands that it’s not the artist that made that song so good, but a production team, and few people are going to love an album made by a production team. In the old days, we had the option of buying EPs instead of full records, but after cassettes and cds took over the single basically fell by the wayside (they’re still around, though nowhere near as prominent). But people can’t go out spending $15 or $20 on an unknown quantity. The internet has made us smarter purchasers of music, allowing us to test out and sample full albums, letting us judge their quality before hand, and, for the majors it seems, people are finally realizing that they don’t like what they hear, at least, not enough to buy the album.
There are some people out there that have basically decided they’re never going to pay for an album again, and I know some of them. But at the same time I know more people that are buying more music than ever before thanks to the exposure of and availability on the internet.
If the major labels can get their heads out of their asses and realize that talent isn’t assembled in studios and by marketing teams, but instead needs to be nurtured and developed without interference, then maybe they can lean a little less on their promotional strategies and rely a little more on a stable of quality artists.
Audio portions of todays Current should be on-line tomorrow.
Joss of dreams
Had a weird dream last night that I was watching Ebert and Roeper’s “At The Movies” and they were having a discours on Joss Whedon’s “Wonder Woman” movie. Mainly they were arguing about whether Diane Lane was the right choice for the role. Though I dislike the man I find I often agree with Roeper on many of his reviews, and though I idollize the man, I sometimes find Ebert to be too lenient on some crappy, crappy movies. In this case though, I sided with Ebert in his assessment of Lane as the Princess of Amazons, and Roeper’s main complaint was that Lane is too flat chested for the role. Ebert called the man sexist and they moved on from their argument to describe the film.
Taking place in 300AD, the world no longer believes in the Gods of Greek mythology, an as their power fades a stuggle of relevance takes place and the Gods, Titans, heroes and villains of myth take up arms against one another, wreaking havoc on the Earth beneath them. Wonder Woman knows that Ares is responsible for the conflicts and instead of choosing sides with the powerful, she takes the side of mortals and leads them against the mighty.
Now that I think about it, it all doesn’t really make sense, and I don’t understand why a studio would turn a superhero movie into a completely fictitious historical epic (it seemed so much more like Troy than Spider-Man). But, alas, it was a dream and thank goodness. Surely Whedon’s smarter than my dreams any day.
Mild panic after my region free DVD player broke while viewing something on Saturday (especially since I have a few Region 2 discs coming from across the pond), but the shoppe in Chinatown Centre I purchased it at kindly replaced it with very little hassle. If you’re looking for region-free and good service, that’s the place to go.