It appears as though the music industry has found a new strategy to cash in on royalties. As music lovers are well aware, at first these companies tried to sue individual users for illegally downloading music. But it is painfully clear that this approach to recover from major financial loss has destroyed their image in the public eye.
In lieu of lowering the price of albums in order to go up against the free music circulating through the internet, the music industry has turned to collection agencies who are now taking legal action against cellphone companies over royalties from ring tones. They claimed that ring tones counted as public performances so cell phone companies should be obligated to pay performance fees. The courts quickly renounced this claim.
Despite this unfruitful endeavour to collect on royalties, Broadcast Music Inc is now suing T-Mobile over ring back tones, alleging that the mobile carrier is selling them without licensing agreements. Unlike ring tones, which play publically when someone calls, ring back tones are only heard specifically by the person calling. Instead of hearing a cellphone dialing, the caller will hear a song that was chosen by the cell owner.
Critics are quick to point out the apparent irony of this lawsuit. If ringtones, which can be heard by anyone around a cellphone, do not constitute public performance, it seems ludicrous to sue the mobile carriers over a ringback tone that can be heard only by the caller. With record companies suffering from huge financial losses, it seems as though they are grasping at straws in order to collect any money that they possibly can.
It does not appear that lowering the cost of CDs, DVDs and other media is an plan that has occurred to the music industry. There are still quite a few fans out there that prefer to collect and own the actual products, but with prices constantly spiking, downloading music for free seems very appealing. Many CDs generally go on sale for about seventeen dollars.
Some bands have been avoiding the issue of music downloading through different tactics. Radiohead, an alternative rock band, created a website where fans are allowed to download the music for free, or for a donation. Nine Inch Nails’ Trent Reznor has created a similar website. Keeping record companies’ unsuccessful lawsuits and declining public image in mind, it appears as though creative thinking and fair pricing may be more productive than bullying money out of mobile carriers and individual users.
Mallory McGuinness-Hickey works for debt collection agency Rapid Recovery Solution and writes free lance pieces on financial news. Grab a totally unique version of this article from the Uber Article Directory