A to Z of Making It, Copyright, Music, My Stories, Piracy

The Streaming Wars, iTunes Suspending Downloads Due To Decreased Sales While Bandcamp Sees An Increase in Sales

“It’s (streaming) not the enemy and the thing that frustrates me is the old guys, and I call ’em the old guards; now what a nasty position to be in to be thought of as a gatekeeper. Because you’re a rockstar, you’ve been around 20, 30 years — some of ’em 40 years — and you say, ‘Bah humbug to streaming!’ You say, ‘Bah humbug to rock. Rock is dead. There’s no hope for the future. Put your guitars down and go get a job in a bank.’ It’s, like, that’s not the message that young musicians and fans need to hear. They need to hear, ‘Streaming is your friend. The listening experience is more exciting. Pick up your guitars, there’s a career for you out there. The next Elton John’s out there. The next Metallica’s out there. The next Beatles is out there. The next Muse is out there — they’re out there.’ They’re young, they need to be pushed to be the best they can be; they don’t need to be told there’s no future. There’s money and there’s hope, and what money gives musicians is the opportunity to have stability. And with stability you can continue to create music and, when an artist is creating music, we get to do interviews and talk about it.”
Nikki Sixx 

Suddenly Google has become the baddie when it comes to piracy being. The tech giant is accused of the same crimes that Napster, Limewire, The Pirate Bay, MegaUpload, etc. were accused of previously.

It’s been ongoing for a while, especially around the takedown procedures. Suddenly musicians are now speaking up against the small payments from YouTube. Nikki Sixx and Deborah Harry spoke out against YouTube.

Manager Irving Azoff mentioned YouTube should allow musicians to opt out of the service, and if the musicians via their backers ask for their content to be removed it should be removed permanently and not allowed to be put back up without the consent of said musicians.

And if you have ten minutes, check out the latest rant against YouTube. It is a read of BenHur proportions.

And then there was a rumour of iTunes cancelling music downloads which was denied by Apple. However where there is a rumour, there is also some truth. The article states;

“Whether or not Apple wakes up one day and decides to tear down its iTunes music download store is not the most important thing.  Because they are already starting to get rid of it.  This phase-out is already happening and Apple is definitely assisting this process.  They are definitely not growing their download store and they are doing what it takes to make this die a natural death.”

The article talks about how Apple is blurring the lines between iTunes and Apple Music, by corrupting our iTunes downloads with the Apple Music product, even going as far as replacing your paid iTunes download with the a different version licensed for Apple Music. Apple believes by doing this process, the user would eventually give in and pay for an Apple Music Streaming subscription.

And the major record labels couldn’t care less. They will phase out CD’s and if mp3 downloads are phased out, the only mp3’s pirates can download are the web rips of YouTube songs. Which if you read the above, the labels are really pushing hard to tear down as well. All of this means the labels get back control of the distribution channel that Napster took away.

They have hedged their bets with every digital musical offering, taking decent percentage stakes in each of them, so when they get sold or go public, the labels stand to gain billions. Add to that the millions earned from licensing the songs that they hold copyrights for and you get to see how much money is going to the record labels and not the artists.

But hey, YouTube and Spotify is to blame.

Bandcamp has posted a counter argument to Apples “iTunes problem”.

  • Bandcamp grew by 35% last year.
  • Fans pay artists $4.3 million dollars every month using the site, and they buy about 25,000 records a day.
  • Nearly 6 million fans have bought music through Bandcamp.
  • Digital album sales on Bandcamp grew 14% in 2015 while dropping 3% industry-wide.
  • Track sales grew 11% while dropping 13% industry-wide.
  • Vinyl was up 40%.
  • Cassettes 49%…
  • Even CD sales grew 10% (down 11% industry-wide).

Bandcamp is not just a download store. When a user buys music on Bandcamp, they also get instant, unlimited streaming of that music via Bandcamp’s free apps as well as an optional, high-quality download.

In the past I have always mentioned that fans come in different ways and consume music in different ways and it looks like Bandcamp is positioned to capitalise on that.

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5 thoughts on “The Streaming Wars, iTunes Suspending Downloads Due To Decreased Sales While Bandcamp Sees An Increase in Sales

  1. I reckon Bandcamp is the way forward for me! I started using it a lot last year. It’s a great model: you get streaming, you get downloads and you get the physical copies if you want those too. And you know a good portion of the money is going to the right people!

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