Wednesday, February 27, 2008

More Interesting Links

We typically run our "This Week in News" round-ups on Fridays, but we were running a little behind last week, so we posted it yesterday. But the noteworthy stories just kept coming. So consider this your music/biz/tech/policy after dinner mint.

Apple's iTunes Now No. 2 Music Retailer in U.S.
Apple Inc. Tuesday said iTunes is now the No. 2 music retailer in the U.S., behind Wal-Mart Stores, based on the latest data from market research firm NPD. Apple also said there are now more than 50 million iTunes store customers. The major labels aren't always in agreement with the way Apple does business, but this level of market dominance pretty much compels them to keep selling through iTunes., February 25, 2008

Music Exec: "Music 1.0 Is Dead"
Or so says Ted Cohen, a former EMI exec who used the phrase at the Digital Music Forum East conference. He pleaded with the industry to be more creative with new business models but not to "be desperate" during this transitional period. Most people agree that the music world is going through a major transformation, but nobody knows exactly where things will end up.
Nate Anderson, Ars Technica, February 26, 2008

Entrepreneurs Lash Out Against Lopsided Major Label Deals
Are major labels killing promising startups with lopsided deals? According to entrepreneurs at the Digital Music Forum in New York on Tuesday, the answer is yes. Majors frequently demand massive upfront costs for the rights to their catalogs, as well as lopsided percentage payouts. "There's too much squeeze up front, and companies can't survive five, seven years," explained David Del Beccaro, president and founder of Music Choice. "This is a ten-year transition."
Paul Resnikoff, Digital Music News, February 26, 2008

More Teenagers Ignoring CDs, Report Says
According to recent data, 48% of teenagers bought no CDs at all in 2007, up from 38% in 2006. Music download sales are growing, with iTunes at the front of the pack. Sales might not yet be comparable to the peak of the CD era, but music business execs should probably be happy the kids are buying at all.
George Frey, LA Times, February 27, 2007

FCC: We'll Protect Web Neutrality
A top U.S. regulator Monday said the U.S. Federal Communications Commission is ready to stop broadband providers from interfering with users' access, while a leading Internet service provider denied accusations it discriminates against users. "I think it's important to understand that the commission is ready, willing and able to step in if necessary to correct any (unreasonable) practices that are ongoing today," FCC Chairman Kevin Martin said at a hearing on Internet practices.
Reuters, February 25, 2008

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