The Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Google Music Contract?

Google isn’t just being a little bad in their contract negotiations with indie labels. In a leak to Digital Music News, it proves to be the worst contract I or anyone I’ve talked to has ever seen, for anything music-related. It puts the “boiler” in boilerplate. F*&K It: Here’s the Entire YouTube Contract for Indies… If this leaked contract is what Google still stands by, and current analysis in the music press is correct, the deal is deeply unsettling. It blurs the lines between free and premium services by placing them all under a single contract. YouTube and its Spotify …

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Google Now On The Record With Anti-Indie Negotiating Tactics

As Beats, Spotify, and others earn praise from indies, Google is looking like music’s biggest new villain. According to independent labels, Google is ignoring their collective negotiating groups, offering poor terms in comparison to what they offer majors, and then threatening to block artists and labels from YouTube if they don’t accept those disadvantaged license deals on the company’s new service. And a Google executive today all but publicly confirmed the threats to the press. You might expect that Google would want to burnish its image in light of an upcoming paid streaming service (think Google clone of Spotify, possibly), …

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150 Indie Labels Lose Stock as London Warehouse Burns; Details Emerging, Reports, and Benefits

As has been widely reported, the UK’s largest independent entertainment distributor, PIAS, suffered the complete loss of stock in an enormous warehouse in North London amidst rioting in the neighborhood. Impacted is stock not only in music, but independent film, too. The warehouse is owned by Sony DADC, but the impacted stock is owned by distributor PIAS and covers some 150 record labels (see list below), from big names to tiny – and more vulnerable – outlets. While details on insurance coverage and timing are largely forthcoming, the more urgent problem is that – insurance payments or no – the …

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clouds

High Anxiety: Even Before Its Announcement, Indies Concerned About Apple Cloud

Seeing clouds on a sunny day. Photo (CC-BY) Kristine Paulus. We’ll be watching Apple’s developer conference closely to try to understand the implications of a likely announcement of an Apple cloud music service for artists. While Google and Amazon are already testing those waters, Apple’s dominance of the software player (iTunes) and mobile players (iPod, iPhone) give it arguably greater weight. We should know more after the official announcement, but early reports suggest independent labels (to say nothing of unsigned artists) may have reason for concern. I think it’ll make more sense to analyze this once some of the secrecy …

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Will the Next Album You Buy Be Flash Memory? SanDisk Joins Major Labels, Big Box Retail, with slotMusic

Distributing music on USB sticks or removable flash memory is an idea various parties have tried for the last few years. The Creative Commons advocates at self-proclaimed “non-evil” indie label Magnatune sold USB sticks pre-loaded with ten albums in 2004; Barenaked Ladies had the nicely-named Barenaked on a stick. But to really make the idea (ahem) stick, you’d need some big distribution. And that’s what a new initiative backed by the major labels and massive flash memory manufacturer SanDisk promises to do. slotMusic.org | Press Release See also GearLog, which notes that SanDisk previously did a free promotional SD of …

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