In case you haven’t seen it, this is the big news in the music biz this morning:
By Susan Butler, N.Y.
The major record companies and motion picture studios have reached an out-of-court settlement of international litigation, revealed today (July 27) by the RIAA and IFPI, with Sharman Networks and other operators of peer-to-peer network Kazaa.
I especially liked this quote, from Mitch Bainwol, the chairman/CEO of the RIAA:
This is welcome news for the music community and the legal online music marketplace. Steadily but surely, we are passing another important marker on the remarkable journey that is the continuing transformation and development of the digital marketplace. The winners are fans, artists and labels and everyone else involved in making music, and our partners in the technology community.
Hey, as a songwriter who hopes someday to make lots of money from the legitimate distribution of my work, I won’t lie: I’m pleased as punch with the outcome. But I think saying that the fans are winners in this ruling is going to take some convincing. But then it’s a little like the legalization and control of marijuana and other drugs: the people who are for it (myself included) are often convinced of the value of quality control measures and enforcement of safety and security, while for some people, the thrill and freedom may be tainted by legalization and limitations.
OK, maybe that’s where the comparison breaks down. But the point is, this is great news for music creators and everyone else whose livelihood depends on fair compensation for trade of music. It may not be such a party for people who’ve been building up an enormous MP3 collection without having to pay a cent for it.
What’s your take?