Ezekiel 25:17. The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men. Blessed is he who, in the name of charity and good will, shepherds the weak through the valley of the darkness. For he is truly his brother's keeper and the finder of lost children.
(Samuel L Jackson :p)
Looking at the system and reading through what is required can be a bit mind-boggling at first, especially if you have a traditional mind set. Here are some scenarios by way of example to illustrate how the AU system can benefit various artists and businesses.
Now not just for music: In the past, busking on a street corner exposed the artist to a very small proportion of the public, but perhaps the worst of it has always been that it puts music before people when their minds are elsewhere. People no longer have time to stop and listen as they once did, life is hectic, people prioritise.
As times change the old ways start to fall by the wayside. Yet with the endless march of progress, new technologies give rise to new opportunities. In the age of the internet a busker can reach out to millions if not billions of the people. The truly beautiful thing about their internet performance is given to people who want to listen. When it is time to relax or party. When it is time to socialise are be lost in their music. The performance is given at the right time.
The performance is also portable, the music can follow the fans wherever they go stored in mp£ players. The busker can tag along: invited, and support the fan in their daily toil.
Digital media and the busking revolution: But this is no longer just for music and street performers, now any digital media can be 'busked'. If you can transform your artwork into digital data; it can then be shared anyone over the net. Music, movies, images, books and software can all the busked in this new information age.
Will it work?
Often the music industry says the P2P trading in pirate goods steals CD sales, yet a report by the Canadian Government's Industry Canada titled "The Impact of Music Downloads and P2P File-Sharing on the Purchase of Music: A Study for Industry Canada" confirm what most audiophile P2P users already know: P2P actually increases sales (see the summery of findings). However the old media industries do not accept the reports finding as evidenced by a response from the MIPI reported in an Australian news story: "Piracy not raiding CD sales"
Denied access to air time? Payola getting in your way? Sick to death of begging suits to listen to your music who coudln't give a shit about you or your music?
Switch. Switch your thought processes to new opportunities. Stop dealing with these arseholes, and invest all your time in dealing with the people who matter: your fans.
Address: Every gig you do, make sure you get your band's web site address into the hands of your audience. Even if that means handing out hard copy CDs or flyers with the address printed on it. Wear gear with your web address. Put in on signs. Write it on walls.. (hmm, maybe not that one). Make sure people know where the fuck they can find you!
Focal point: It is your web address that is now the focal point for your fans; it will provide gig dates, download pages for your music, link to You Tube vids, link to ticket sales, provide feedback, allow fans to chat in forums to catch up with other fans they met at gigs (to coordinate their pro-fan efforts), link into face book and other sites, and collect donations. It will also link to your own merchandising site with the band's logos (and web address). Fans can even order a hard copy from a POD service if they lack broadband.
Your web site is the fans portal to the band, and it is a giant 'advert' in cyberspace. Once the gig ends the fun continues via your web site.
Digital Rights Management proving a pain in the ass? Are your fans getting more and more pissed off at the extreme lengths now needed to secure your media from pirates? Fed up of the whole hacking arms race? Thinking about rootkits?
Switch: Sometimes the best way to defeat an opponent is to not fight on their terms. If so much effort and energy is being put into cracking your system, then surly their must be a way to refocus that energy into benefiting you?
Remember: the only thing worse than being hacked, is not being hacked.
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