DRM RIP THX EMI – 9/4/07 Sentric Music Blog..

DRM RIP THX EMI – 9/4/07 Sentric Music Blog..
I was planning to do the blog on effectively marketing an unsigned band this week following on from last weeks PR lesson but alas, major events have taken place in this industry we call music. Yes, I’m of course referring to EMI’s decision to sell its music without DRM (Digital Rights Management) on iTunes so plebs like me who don’t own a iPod can listen to music unrestricted.
“EMI takes locks off music tracks
Music giant EMI is taking software locks off its digital music sold via download sites such as iTunes
Hurrah I say, I fucking hate DRM and I’ll be glad to see the back of them. I still remember the first time I ‘discovered’ the concept of DRM after I’d downloaded a song from mycokemusic.com (what was I thinking?) only to discover that my MP3 player at the time wouldn’t play it. I was well pissed off. If I’ve just bought it, why can’t I listen to it whilst on the move? If I wasn’t so addicted to the fizzy stuff I’d have boycotted coke a long time ago…
Lets put the for and against into context:
For DRM:
· It helps protects music against piracy
Against DRM:
· It restricts the consumer
· It’s bloody annoying
Granted, that’s quite a short for and against list but they’re the major points at hand. I understand the need to protect music and I understand the need to stop piracy. If noone bought music then Hard Fi might not be able to buy dinner (yet another thing they could moan about. God I hate Hard Fi). I was talking to Ann Harrison (author of ‘Music: The Business’ and Robbie Williams’ lawyer) the other day and she believes that we as an industry have sold music too cheaply. Although I was quite surprised by this statement I can see where she’s coming from. Making music can be an expensive process, to then sell that music for 79p a track you’ll struggle to make any cash at all. These new DRM free tracks will cost 99p which I personally will be willing to pay if it means I can do what I want with the music.
As consumers we’ve never had restrictions before, tapes and CD’s can be swapped and copied with ease so why do it now? The music industry is like that of a scared child, it appears to always go for the negative rather then the positive. Granted, it got stung big time when they decided that this internet malarkey was nothing more then a fad and it wouldn’t really effect the way people bought/listened to music, but surely they should learn from these colossal mistakes? Arguably maybe they are, EMI have took a bold step but I feel it’s the right one, we’ll now have to wait and see if the other big 3 follow.
This does put one thing into jeopardy though and that’s the new subscription model that companies such as Napster use. I personally like the idea of a subscription service (i.e. £15 a month for unlimited music, but as soon as you stop paying for it, you can’t listen to it any more) and in my infinite wisdom I predict that music will become more of a service than a product in the future. You can pay Virgin £70 a month for TV, broadband, a phone line and mobile phone, so why not pay £80 and have your music chucked in with as well?
Steve Jobs described EMI’s decision as “This is the next big step forward in the digital music revolution – the movement to completely interoperable DRM-free music.” Call me a cynic but surely its this interoperability that could damage iTune’s monopoly on the market? I think Mr Jobs is smiling for the cameras but cursing inside. The fascist.
What do you lot think then? Is DRM a good or bad thing? Do you think other companies will follow suit?
What I’m listening to this week: Art Brut and Kings of Leon “I’ll BEEEE there”
Stay Tuned


~ by Sentric on April 11, 2007.

One Response to “DRM RIP THX EMI – 9/4/07 Sentric Music Blog..”

  1. […] 2008 and Warner become the 4th and final major to sack off DRM: Hu-rah! I did do a little blog on DRM a while ago but the industry has adopted a rather widdershin approach to its initial stance that it […]

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