Friday, February 15, 2008

This Week In News

The New Economics of Music

Economist Umair Haque explains why the music industry is so vulnerable to piracy and how to fix it. He argues that consumers download music because buying an album comes with a great element of risk because the record label provides no guarantee of quality. In most industries the cost of a product is an indication of quality, but the music industry has near-uniform costs. Umair suggests new pricing models to reduce this element of risk.
Bubble Generation, February 15, 2008

Microsoft: Teens Pirate Less Often if Aware of Laws
A new study by Microsoft has a different take on pirating. It found that just ten percent of teens were familiar with copyright laws and that when the teens were made aware of the laws they were less likely to download music. Microsoft reacted to the study by launching MYBYTES, a website to promote intellectual property rights education. Sounds like the sort of thing kids would be interested in.
Electronista, February 13, 2008

Yoko Seeks to Stop Performer From Using the Name "Lennon"
Yoko Ono is taking legal action against singer-songwriter Lennon Murphy for naming her band “Lennon.” Murphy was named after the famous Beatle. John’s son Julian Lennon said that Murphy has his full support.
BoingBoing, February 12, 2008

Rocker Tells Huckabee to Lay Off Song
In a story that may look a little familiar, Tom Scholz of Boston fame has asked Republican Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee to stop using his song, “More Than a Feeling,” in campaign events. Scholz said that while Boston has not endorsed a candidate, he favors Democrat Barack Obama.
Associated Press, February 15, 2008

New Lease of Life for Aging Rock Stars
The European Union has proposed extending copyrights for recorded music from 50 years to 95 years, in a move that will surely benefit Britain’s aging rockers. EMI, which holds the rights to the Beatles catalog, is understandably eager to extend the length of copyrights, as their first single, Love Me Do, is set to become public domain in just five years.
The London Times, February 15, 2008

Aerosmith Plugs Into 'Guitar Hero' Popularity
A new version of Guitar Hero is set to come out in June that’s based on the career of Aerosmith. The band has seen an increase in sales after being featured in Guitar Hero III and hopes to capitalize on its success. In fact, 62 of the 70 artists featured in GH III saw a noticeable increase in sales after the release of the game, led by previously unknown band DragonForce, which saw its sales rise from under 2,000 a week to 40,000 a week. Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry said that someday the band could release new music through Guitar Hero, which he called “part of the next evolution.”
USA Today, February 14, 2008

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