Wednesday fun – Chris Anderson abuses ‘free’

By | chris anderson, Content, Copyright | 2 Comments

In an ironic twist Chris Anderson is guilty of taking content for his latest book from Wikipedia for free and without citation:

Chris Anderson and his US publisher Hyperion have said they intend to "correct" future editions of his title Free after the Virginia Quarterly Review said it had "discovered almost a dozen passages that are reproduced nearly verbatim from uncredited sources", with most "but not all" coming from Wikipedia.

And his excuse, poor:

Responding in an email after VQR posted its findings online, Anderson said he "had the original sources footnoted," but "lost the footnotes at the 11th hour", and admitted that in his "rush" to publication he had forgotten to do a "write-through [which] covered all the text that was not directly sourced".


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EMI go DRM free

By | Business models, Content, Copyright, Music | 2 Comments

mspoke, who is a regular commenter on this blog, yesterday posted this as a comment to my “going on holiday” post:


How can you go away when EMI announce they will be offering DRM-free music from May. Maybe people will respond to this comment.

What I don’t get about the EMI announcement is that people will have to pay a premium (99p for DRM-free as opposed to 79p for DRM tracks) for DRM-free tracks. Talk about trying to confuse the consumer. It such a half-a**** effort in my opinion. What do others think?

Good call, and thanks for the comment.  Up here in the Alps I had missed the news, but this is a significant development in the online music industry as it grapples with copyright issues. 

I am posting it here so it gets the attention it deserves – about three quarters of you access this blog via a feed reader and I suspect don’t regularly read the comments.

I see it a little differently to mspoke though.  I think it is a positive step in the right direction for EMI to offer DRM free music, and giving the consumer an option to pay less for a track that they in effect don’t fully own doesn’t alter that.  In fact, we will now see for the first time what sort of value the market places on the extra benefit of having tracks DRM free.

That said, the devil is always in the detail with things like this and the way EMI present the options will be critical.

Now major labels are thinking about DRM free MP3 sales

By | Content, Copyright, Music | 6 Comments

This is going further and faster than I thought, driven by fears that illegal file sharing is starting to hit the growth of digital music sales.

This is from the International Herald Tribune.

Executives of several technology companies meeting here at Midem, the annual global trade fair for the music industry, said this weekend that a move toward the sale of unrestricted digital files in the MP3 format from at least one of the four major record companies could come within months.

Thanks to Fred Wilson for the lead on this (but Fred, the NYT article you pointed to was DRM blocked).

YouTube to start paying for content in deal with Warner

By | Copyright, Google, Video | No Comments


The following was on MarketCluster

Warner Music is partnering with YouTube in a content licensing deal that means the label will make money when its content is used in videos that appear on YouTube. No deal terms were disclosed. Warner is making its entire music video library available on YouTube and the pair will share ad revenue related to the video content. YouTube is also poised to roll out a new filtering technology that aims to monitor partner content on its site and then pay royalties accordingly. It will also allow YouTube to remove any videos using content from partners such as Warner that the partners feel offensive. YouTube says it plans to sign similar deals with other copyright owners than Warner.

The takeaways for me here are:

  1. They are cleaning up their copyright mess which includes taking some content off their site
  2. The revenue share deal is just like the first ad-funded content deal on the web that Yahoo! struck with Reuters back in 1996
  3. This limits both the upside – fewer videos means less upside – and the downside – they are less likely to get sued/shut down