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Warner exec proposes flat music fee for ISPs

updated 05:00 pm EDT, Fri March 28, 2008

Warner on Flat Music Fee

Warner Music Group has revealed that it's in the midst of developing an organization that it hopes will turn around mounting losses at traditional music labels. Headed by former Geffen label head Jim Griffin, the unnamed effort would take the concepts behind Universal's Total Music to a more label-independent format. Rather than send music to one label, customers of the service would see a fee for unlimited music downloads bundled into the cost of the Internet service that would be used for a general money pool; the money would then be distributed across all labels to compensate both themselves and the artists as they see fit.

Griffin noted that nothing was set in place as to pricing or other details, but explained that even a small fee would create more money than today's segmented industry. At $5 per month, the plan would offer about $20 billion in total revenue versus the $10 billion of the existing market. Poorer countries could charge far less but still make up for the difference through sheer population numbers, while at a certain point users might also have the option of completely free music in exchange for ads.

The proposal has already drawn criticism that suggests the service would be a "tax" on users for music and protect the major labels, whose wider catalogs would make it difficult for independents to join the pool and take a share of revenue. However, Griffin explained that Warner wouldn't seek to make the fee mandatory through the government or other means.

The label official also added he was contracted to develop the organization managing the service over the course of three years and that he believed labels should avoid filing lawsuits against individuals, which he believed did nothing but antagonize potential customers.




by MacNN Staff

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  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Slippery Slope

    If this actually passed you can bet the next fee they slap on will be for movies and that for sure will be higher than their suggest 5/m for music. Where do you stop them then? games/software all these things get pirated. I think its a terrible idea.

  1. Flying Meat

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    warner exec proposes

    "Give us/me your money. I don't care how you get it, just give it to me - er, us."

  1. Flying Meat

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    "the label official

    also added... that he believed labels should avoid filing lawsuits against individuals, which he believed did nothing but antagonize potential customers."

    gee. ya think? And how many years and lawsuits, since RIAA started using this tactic, did it take to figure THAT one out?

  1. WiseWeasel

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    scam

    This revenue will be distributed completely arbitrarily, completely unrepresentative of what people are actually downloading, and you can bet that independent artists will see about zilch from all this. This is just propping up a failing business model through extortion. It'd be a shame if *something* should happen to yer fancy ISP, wouldn't it...

  1. bhuot

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    not fair

    Not everyone downloads illegal content. Why do I have to pay a tax because others don't want to follow laws?

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    choice?

    Unless this additional service and its associated fee is offered as an option to ISP subscribers, this is nothing more than a tax. My parents, who are in their 70s and have NEVER downloaded any music, would be forced to subsidize music and artists that they find appalling. UNFAIR, but typical of the clueless music industry.

  1. ophiochos

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    breathtaking arrogance

    these people are so obsessed with themselves... what the h*** makes them think we all download their music? This is incredible. Since when did they become some kind of nationalised (internationalised) utility?

  1. JeffHarris

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    It's called chutzbah!

    You gotta hand it 'em, these b******* sure got nerve!

    Why should I, or anyone else, pay to allow a minority of people to steal music?

    I don't download music. I actually buy CDs. I prefer sound quality over quantity. AND a disk with cover art, etc. to add to my music collection.

    The formula in the pop music world goes like this: If 2 tracks out of 12 on an album are good, it's a hit. Now that people can cherry pick the 2 decent songs from an album, they're no longer stuck with the dross. The record companies get stuck with it.

    Now if the QUALITY of the music they're hawking were higher, they would surely sell more. Hair styles, fashion statements, implants and dance numbers only take this stuff so far.

  1. lamewing

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    sounds familiar

    Hmmmmm. Didn't the American colonists have a problem being unnecessarily taxed without representation? So they want to tax us without our consent for something that MOST of us don't do?

    Grrrr

  1. Eldernorm

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    It scares them

    It scares them to realize that in todays internet, they have NO PLACE and they serve NO purpose.

    They just get in the way. And keep all the money for themselves.

    en

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