The music industry has to have been a subject of a voodoo spell or some kind of the black magic. Just to be respectful to all the hard working individuals at the labels, there is no other possibility!
Most forms of entertainment, such as video gaming, the book and movie industry, have all survived the arrival of internet. Video games had fewer revenues than music in 1999… next year, they will top 100 billion!
So why is the music industry at 30% of what it once was in 1999? Who are the voodoo initiators?
The answer is obvious. There are two giant voodoo needles choking the entire industry.
Needle number one is applied by free music identification services like Shazam, SoundHound or Google Music Search. Lyrics search services are part of the same voodoo needle venting life from the music industry.
The second needle is too much information on displays. It should be enough to deliver the best music for a particular person, or public situation – displaying artist and song information is suicidal, just like Shazam services are suicidal.
In the era of internet, if you have a song title, you are almost an owner! If you add the artist name, you are a certified owner and you do not have to go to a pirate website to grab your goods. Just log in to YouTube and take your music.
HOW TO HELP THE VICTIM?
Needle number one can be removed by coordinated efforts of all ID services. For the first time ever, they would be able to earn money for their own investors. Legal changes to the “Fair Use Doctrine” would be more efficient and would eliminate laggards and Google from preserving the voodoo spell.
Google is the only ID provider who makes indirect advertising profit from music identification. There should be enough arguments to lobby-in proper changes. Shazam is like an intruder, plundering the house of the unaware music owner and giving particular property to a stranger.
Again, giving away song info means giving the goods. Music identification services that are converted to cash registers will give a new life to themselves and artists.
Needle number two is much easier to pull out if we succeed with needle number one. Once the ID guys are in the ’39 cents per tune’ mode for each song addition to a playlist – with an ownership certificate included – all music providers could become merchants. Radio stations, big bloggers and streamers should be eager to do it out of simple selfishness and greed.
Now, all we need is a Central Bank of Music delivering coded tunes to everyone. YouTube is the perfect candidate to become a central dispensary, private copy rights policeman and a 50 billion dollar hub of the new 100 billion dollar industry.
YouTube would also become the biggest self-service label and music store, just allowing the artist or anyone posting content to set the limit of free runs. An artist could choose if 100K or 250K converts his work to a 39 cent iTunes style event.
Apple’s iTunes and Amazon can also function as competing dispensaries. Radio DJ’s would decide on the source of coded tunes, allowing for Radio stations to earn cash like an old fashion music store once did.
Let’s stop the Voodoo and start an orchestrated effort to Discovery Moment Monetization – there are no losers in this business model.