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To Point Fingers and Claim Responsibility… Or Not

December 3, 2012 Industry Trends No Comments

GavelLast month in Germany, the Federal Court made a ruling which moved to limit the liability of parents for their minor children’s illegal music sharing. The court’s decision stipulates that parents are not liable for the illegal music file sharing of their minor child if they have educated their children enough about the prohibition of participating in file sharing on the Internet.

The ruling represents a setback for the music industry, which demanded several thousand Euros for damages and legal fees. The case was triggered by a 13-year-old who illegally downloaded music and spread it on the net.

As Florian Drücke, the Head of the Federal Association of the Music Industry, warned, the judgment does not mean that parents no longer need to worry about the surfing habits of their children. “The recent statement of the Supreme Court should not be ‘misunderstood’ as a free ride for parents and their children to careless file sharing,” explained Drücke. “What concrete steps parents must take, especially for repeated violations, remains to be seen in the view of for the judgment.”

The issue is not about monitoring the children — we know that over-supervision is not a recipe for success when it comes to 13-year-olds. Rather, it’s about building their awareness for the value of music, films and books. The question is, how do you do that?

The Marketplace Presents: Muso

MUSO LogoAs we talked about recently, piracy is still very much an issue in our world today. There are ways to combat it, like streaming services, anti-piracy measures from the government and the DMCA, but that doesn’t solve the immediate problem of having an illegal link up that people are downloading without permission.

Muso is here to help with precisely that problem. As a specialized anti-piracy platform, Muso scans the web for illegal files and issues DMCA takedown notices on your behalf. Keep in mind that in order to issue these notices, you need to have full legal rights to take them down worldwide, under penalty of perjury.

Here’s how it works:

  • Select your plan and fill out the required details in order for Muso to issue takedown notices in your name. A 14-day free trial is available for you try the app out before committing, and other plans are priced according to the number of takedowns issued per month.
  • At this point, the artist on which you installed Muso will be verified and a profile should appear within an hour. The hunt for your illegal files begins immediately after that. Just click on your artist page and begin…
  • Once in, you’ll notice three different tabs to the right: Files, Groups and SEO. The Files tab lists all files that Muso has matched to your artist. You can add search options by clicking on Search/Filter Files. The Groups tab allows you to automate bundle takedown notices sent for files of the same name. The SEO tab manages search results leading to your tracks, and Muso also allows you to issue notices to remove those results from search engines like Google.
  • For each tab, tracking your takedown status is as easy as reading a traffic light. If the status color is red, the file is available for takedown. When you select a file and click on “Send Takedown” (remember to review and confirm that you have the rights to issue the notice), the color will turn orange, indicating a takedown in progress. Green of course means the file was successfully removed. The more green the better!
  • To help you confirm whether the file found is indeed an infringing file, you can click on the file name itself. This will lead you to the page where the file is hosted. Similarly, the S or G icon to the left of the file name will take you to the page where Muso found the link.
  • If you find a file that Muso hasn’t detected yet, you can add it manually by clicking on the “Add Files” link at the top right of the page.

Muso is constantly checking for new infringing files, and you can access the dashboard at any time to track the status of your removals. The average time between when you send the takedown notice and when the file is removed varies depending on the source, but typically takes between 2 hours and 3 days. For cyber lockers with whom Muso deals with directly, files are removed within 30 seconds.

Ready to get started? Check out the demo below to find out more:

MUSO is available via The Marketplace. Find out more about them on their One-Sheet.

Digital Music on the Uprise in 2012

It’s no news that digital music has slowly been claiming a solid market share for the industry. But there are still improvements to be made and growth to be seen.

Worldwide sales of digital music grew by 8% last year to 5.2 billion U.S. dollars as the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) announced in London at the introduction of the Digital Music Report 2012. And it’s not over… The digital music market could continue its expansion in 2012.

In relation to global sales in 2011, the share of digital music grew by 32%. The range of relevant licensed online music services grew within the past year from 23 to 58 countries – mainly due to the rapid expansion of services such as iTunes, Spotify and Deezer.

Despite the positive impact, online piracy is still the biggest hurdle to sustainable growth for music on the Internet.”While concrete measures abroad to curb online piracy show first successes, Germany lags more and more in the enforcement of copyright,” lamented Florian Drücke, Managing Director of the Association of Music Industry in Berlin. “It is imperative that conditions for growth in the digital space also be created in Germany.”

The Digital Music Report shows all global sales of downloads, subscriptions and ad-supported online service on an annually basis and provides an overview of the legal music service on the Internet and displays on the market developments. The 32-page report can be downloaded for free here.

Shall We Learn from Piracy and Listen to Users?

January 26, 2012 Industry Trends 2 Comments

To start with, let me state that I am not a piracy advocate. I do however believe that things are not always as obvious as we would like them to be, and the case of MegaUpload has many lessons we can learn from.

Without a doubt, MegaUpload‘s closing-down is good news for the content industry. I still can’t understand how some people can defend MegaUpload, when its business model was making money — a lot of money — on the back of producers and rightful beneficiaries. It’s not about freedom of the Internet, it’s about robbery. This said, MegaUpload shutting down won’t be the end of piracy; there are already 10 new MegaUploads-copycats ready to go, and new technologies and piracy models will always be around the corner… an endless fight, you might say.

So what can we do? Continue to spend billions of dollars for this fight? Continue to upset Internet users and make them more and more distrustful of content industries?

I don’t think that the Internet user’s request is “We want content for free.” I think it’s closer to  “we want a great user experience and maximum choice for an affordable price.”

… Continue Reading

Newsflash: People to Pay for Digital Music; But What Does “Pay” Mean?

January 26, 2012 Industry Trends No Comments

Evolution Sketch by Charles Darwin“Give people a choice, and they might pay for digital music, after all.”
— Peter Kafka, All Things D, January 23, 2012.

Damn, that Peter Kafka at the Wall Street Journal is fast. He beat me to the much-anticipated IFPI (International Federation of the Phonographic Industry) 2012 report on the state of digital, er, phonographic music. Sorry IFPI. But, phonographic? Really?

Kafka’s thoughtful piece is titled Digital Music Sales Grow Worldwide, but Big Music Still Frets About Pirates and is about, well, that. I decided to avoid a re-hash and use his piece as a jumping off point…

His opening line struck me. “Give people a choice, and they might pay for digital music, after all.” Not to get all Bill Clinton but it depends on what your definition of “pay” is. As an industry, we spend a lot of time slicing up pie charts, demonstrating how much of the digital business is represented by download for pay, streaming music services, hybrid outlets such as YouTube and other models. Always lurking just off-slide from the aforementioned pie chart are the pirates. Ahhh, the pirates. Big week for them last week…

… Continue Reading

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