Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Music Media Businesses Apple

Music Exec Fires Back At Apple CEO 610

Posted by Zonk
from the good-luck dept.
geniusj writes "Warner Music Group CEO, Edgar Bronfman Jr., has fired back at Steve Jobs in response to the Apple CEO's claim that having variable pricing for iTunes music would be 'greedy.' From the article: 'To have only one price point is not fair to our artists, and I dare say not appropriate to consumers. The market should decide, not a single retailer ... Some songs should be $0.99 and some songs should be more. I don't want to give anyone the impression that $0.99 is a thing of the past ... We are selling our songs through iPod, but we don't have a share of iPod's revenue ... We want to share in those revenue streams. We have to get out of the mindset that our content has promotional value only.' Perhaps iPods combined with iPods are selling music as well, and it's not just a one-way street?"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Music Exec Fires Back At Apple CEO

Comments Filter:
  • by Nicolas MONNET (4727) <nicoaltiva@@@gmail...com> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:45PM (#13638548) Journal
    I don't think so. Why should they deserve a share of iPod sales?
    • by JeffTL (667728) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:47PM (#13638562)
      That man simply does not know the word "iTunes" and was substituting "iPod" for "iTunes Music Store."
      • by tb3 (313150) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:58PM (#13638644) Homepage
        Edgar Bronfman, Jr. does not know a lot of things. He inherited the Seagram fortune, sold its $9 Billion stock of Dupont to buy MCA, for the sole purpose of becoming a media mogul. He's failed miserably. Here's a great article about him on Slate [msn.com]. I especially like this quote, "Edgar Jr. has been designated the movie industry's official idiot--a 42-year-old child who's squandering his family (and his shareholders') fortune on romantic Tinseltown fantasies."

        Don't think he speaks for the entertainment industry; he's an idiot even among those morons.
        • by Drooling Iguana (61479) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @01:31PM (#13638850)
          He should run for President.
        • "Don't think he speaks for the entertainment industry; he's an idiot even among those morons."

          "Hi. I am a record company. I believe that I will sell more products if I make them worse, and charge unreasonable prices. And of course that customers like to get sued and generally screwed."
        • by jangobongo (812593) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @02:04PM (#13639063)
          The Slate article [msn.com] you linked says:
          "Edgar Jr... outraged the industry by proposing that theaters charge higher prices for more expensive movies. Why, he asked, should you pay the same amount to see a $2 million movie as you would to see a $200 million one? Analysts and movie types hooted with derision--that's "like charging for a piece of art based on how much bronze or paint was used," sneered one.

          Edgar Jr. wants to treat movies like any other product: If a movie costs more to produce, you should charge more for it.
          That was seven years ago!

          And now, talking about music:
          "To have only one price point is not fair to our artists, and I dare say not appropriate to consumers. The market should decide, not a single retailer ... Some songs should be $0.99 and some songs should be more."
          Sounds eerily familiar in that context.
          • by tricorn (199664) <sep@shout.net> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @02:35PM (#13639223) Journal

            The reason you don't charge a different price for a more expensive movie is that the cost per showing is exactly the same regardless of the cost to create it (e.g. cost of wear and tear on the print, cost to the theater for projector maintenance, etc). You get more money back from a $200 million movie than for a $2 million movie because the more expensive movie is better. Supposedly. Being better, more people will go see it. Supposedly.

            If it isn't better, that's the fault of the producers, not the consumers. You still have a market effect, its that stupid producers who produce excessively expensive movies that aren't worth it go out of business.

            Same thing for the popular hit music - you'll get more money because you sell more, not because you charge more.

            • by jkabbe (631234) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @07:11PM (#13641122)
              The reason you don't charge a different price for a more expensive movie is that the cost per showing is exactly the same regardless of the cost to create it (e.g. cost of wear and tear on the print, cost to the theater for projector maintenance, etc).

              That same logic suggests that software should be priced based on the number of CD's it comes on, rather than the amount of effort that went into it or the amount of value it brings.

              Yeah, yeah, I know - software and music should be free :)

              • First, the marginal cost difference of 3 CDs vs 1 CD is minimal, but could justify a few dollars difference in price. Second, software is FUNCTIONAL - the pricing model on something functional is going to be different from something that is entertainment. Software also has a more limited lifetime, it becomes obsolete much more quickly than entertainment products, thus creation costs have to be recovered earlier. Even given all that, the price of software is not closely tied to the cost of creating it.

                It

          • by nEoN nOoDlE (27594) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @03:04PM (#13639445) Homepage
            I think that movie thing is a brilliant idea. If they'd charge 3 bucks to see a million dollar movie and 15 - 20 to see a 200 million dollar movie, people would just go to see the cheap movies. More cheap movies would be made, usually by indie filmmakers and the big budget crap blockbusters would die out. That sounds great!
            • I think that movie thing is a brilliant idea. If they'd charge 3 bucks to see a million dollar movie and 15 - 20 to see a 200 million dollar movie, people would just go to see the cheap movies. More cheap movies would be made, usually by indie filmmakers and the big budget crap blockbusters would die out. That sounds great!

              Great in theory, but sucky in reality.

              They wouldn't lower prices for small movies; they'd charge more for big ones.

              On the other hand, I go to a movie every year or two, so I don't really
          • by Seumas (6865) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @03:18PM (#13639579)
            It doesn't make sense to say "let the market decide" when there is no limit to the supply. I mean, when you download a track, you're not reducing the quantity of available tracks out there in the world. So regardless of the DEMAND, the supply (and thus the price) is the same. Any notion otherwise is an artificial limitation - exploiting popularity by saying "this band is more popular and, thus, you should pay $1.50 per song".
        • by banzaimonkey (917475) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @04:47PM (#13640291)
          Shares of Apple were up $0.47 to $52.37 in recent trading, while shares of Warner Music Group were down a penny to $18.03.

          I think that alone says something.

          As for the rest of the article, allow me to translate:

          Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah.

      • Aren't they already getting the majority, like, I don't know, maybe 90% of the iTMS sales? Wasn't iTMS at least originally just trying to get to break-even point? Apple may be making some profit off iTMS sales now, but hardly like anything this guy is talking about. Now the music publishers are wanting that for those songs that are selling more, they want to charge and make more, and claiming it is more fair for the artist. Yeah, right, like the artist will see 2 cents of that. Hey, if the work is more
        • Aren't they already getting the majority, like, I don't know, maybe 90% of the iTMS sales

          Apple doesn't release those figures, but most analysts believe it's about 70%. So, with iTMS having hit the billion-song mark, the recording companies have been paid around $700 million.

          -jcr

          • It's not a billion songs yet. Also, some of those songs sold have been as part of albums, and a lot of the album prices work out to less than 99 cents (or whatever other currency is used) per song. The music labels have therefore gotten well under $700 million so far.

            That said, however, your point still stands. It's clear the labels have made a heck of a lot of money by now on music they don't even have to physically replicate, distribute, etc., and they're making more all the time.

            • by jcr (53032) <jcr.mac@com> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @03:50PM (#13639853) Journal
              It's not a billion songs yet.

              Sorry, I was off by a couple of months. It'll be a billion Real Soon Now, since the rate is accellerating.

              It's clear the labels have made a heck of a lot of money by now on music they don't even have to physically replicate, distribute, etc., and they're making more all the time.

              I think the big story here is how much money they get from the back-catalog now, that they weren't getting before. Most of the songs I've bought from the iTMS is over ten years old, and not particularly easy to find in a record store.

              -jcr
      • That was what I thought at first, but by the time I got to the end of the article, I was pretty sure he really did mean to imply that his industry was entitled to a cut of each and every iPod sold. Perhaps I’m wrong, but Bronfman isn’t known for being the brightest crayon in the sandwich, if you get my drift.
      • That man simply does not know the word "iTunes" and was substituting "iPod" for "iTunes Music Store."

        "We are selling our songs through iPod, but we don't have a share of iPod's revenue," he said.

        No, it really sounds like he want a part of the iPod profits. To claim that they don't have a share of the profits from the music store would be more of a lie than I'd expect even from a representative of the music industry.
      • Probably so, but no matter how you subsitute "iTunes Store" for some of the "iPods" in that quote, it still doesn't make any sense, and the guy sounds like a complete fucking idiot. (This is the first time I've ever used a form of the word "fuck" on slashdot, btw)
        • by The Ultimate Fartkno (756456) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @02:01PM (#13639055)
          If there was ever a time to use the word, I'd say that this was it. If he's claiming that he's not getting paid for sales through iTunes, then he's a fucking liar. If he's saying that he deserves a cut of the sales of iPods, then he's a fucking thief. And when he says that "we have to get out of the mindset that our content has promotional value only" then I really have to say that I have no idea what the *fuck* he's talking about! What other value could music have? Does he want to collect personal property taxes on my old U2 albums? Dividends? Insulation value? Ham?

          Now quick, somebody mod me up +5, fucking confused.
      • That can't be true, because they do have a cut of the iTunes Music Store's revenue. They get paid for their song.

        I think he honestly believes they deserve a cut of the hardware sales that run the music. It's like a game maker telling Dell they deserve a cut of their profits from gaming machines.

      • by unitron (5733) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @09:12PM (#13641820) Homepage Journal
        That man simply does not know the word "iTunes" and was substituting "iPod" for "iTunes Music Store."

        I fear you are both correct and mistaken. From the article:

        Mr. Bronfman said the music industry should not have to use its content to promote the sale of digital music devices for Apple or anyone else, and not truly share in the profits. "We are selling our songs through iPod, but we don't have a share of iPod's revenue," he said. "We want to share in those revenue streams. We have to get out of the mindset that our content has promotional value only.

        When he said that they were selling their songs through iPod he should have said iTunes but he didn't mean iTunes, he meant iPod. He thinks that the record industry is helping Apple sell hardware and that they should get a share of the profits on the hardware.

        Here's something that I stole from a site that stole it from the Wall Street Journal:

        Consider the economics of the iTunes store. Apple charges 99 cents per song that is downloaded by a consumer. Of that 99 cents, Apple pays the record label about 65 cents for licensing rights to the song, estimates Charlie Wolf, an analyst at brokerage firm Needham & Co. Other analysts come up with similar figures. In addition, Apple incurs costs such as credit-card fees, which typically amount to 25 cents a transaction (which can include several songs), plus 2% to 3% of the amount charged. The result: On average, Apple earns less than a dime for each song it sells from the store.

        So here's what's going on. If you buy one song and use your credit card (assuming that your credit card company and Apple will let you use your credit card for a 99 cent purchase) the credit card company gets 25 cents plus another 2 or 3 cents and the record company gets about 65 cents. That leaves Apple with 6 or 7 cents. If you buy more than one song at a time the credit card company doesn't get the 25 cents on the second through infinity dollars but they get that 2 or 3 cents on every dollar and that 25 cents on every customer. So the best Apple can do is 32 cents per song minus 25 cents per customer, and that money has to cover all of their expenses--bandwidth, advertising, payroll, electric bill, water bill, telephone bill, building maintenance, lawyers to keep the record companies from getting any more than they already do, and anything else that they wouldn't have to pay if they weren't running iTunes.

        The record companies, who don't have to pay much of anything they didn't already cover getting those songs ready to go onto a phonograph record, cassette, 8-track, or CD (except for the lawyers to try to screw Apple), know that Apple's not about to give them a bigger cut out of that 99 cents, so the only way they are going to get even more "money for nothing" is to either convince Apple that the record companies deserve a cut of the profits on the hardware (which would go over about as well as Microsoft saying they deserve a cut of Mac sales because Office for the Mac drives Mac sales) or getting the price per song above 99 cents.

        You'll notice that although he said that the market should decide the price and not a single retailer, he didn't say anything about any songs selling for less than 99 cents, so before long that will be the "fair market price" for songs so low in demand that no one will pay more, and everything else will be higher in price and before long you'll be paying as much for downloads as for a physical CD, at which point they will no doubt declare physical CDs underpriced.

        Remember, Apple is doing almost all of the work and paying almost all of the expenses on iTunes while the record companies get 65 per cent not of the net or the profit, but 65 per cent of the gross and the record companies think that they're doing Apple a big favor and that they should get a cut out of each iPod sale as well. Tell me again who the pirates are?

    • Just because you "bought" your iPOD, don't think you have a right to use it. If they have their way, you'll license the right to listen to music on it, and pay a subscription fee, just like Sirius or XM now.
  • wow ?! (Score:4, Funny)

    by rd4tech (711615) * on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:46PM (#13638554)
    is not fair to our artists

    !? :)
  • Maybe the record companies should get a cut of every CD player and stereo system ever sold?
  • by BandwidthHog (257320) <inactive.slashdo ... icallyenough.com> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:47PM (#13638559) Homepage Journal
    An oil industry spokesman said the oil industry should not have to use its content to promote the sale of vehicles for Hummer or anyone else, and not truly share in the profits.

    “We are selling our gas through H2, but we dont have a share of H2’s revenue,” he said. We want to share in those revenue streams.

    The cash register industry did not return calls seeking comment, but representatives for the tobacco industry are reported to be participating in high level talks with the AMA.
    • by Fnkmaster (89084) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:58PM (#13638643)
      My personal favorite is that "the market" should decide. Apparently this guy failed introductory microeconomics - when you are a monopoly supplier (or a cartel) "the market" doesn't decide anything, the monopolist looks at the demand curve and sets a profit maximizing price. Sometimes they decide they've been too generous in the past, and having roped consumers into a new distribution channel, it's time to start jacking up prices again as perhaps demand isn't quite so elastic as they had previously thought.

      Also, he has apparently never taken Strategy 101, or been introduced to the Theory of Complements - iPods and iTMS (and the downloadable music it distributes) are a classic example of complements. Just because Apple has for ONCE actually played a situation intelligently from a strategic perspective and the music industry has yet again failed to do so (monopolies rarely have any incentive to act strategically) doesn't give them a right to shit.

      This diatribe can be simplified into "a company that is not us is making profits in something vaguely related to music and we don't like that". After I finish wiping away the tears of sorrow from my eyes, allow me to say how many nano-give-a-shits I have for this guys problems.
      • by ottawanker (597020) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @01:44PM (#13638960) Homepage
        Apparantly they want the market to decide, but get upset when the market decides that they won't pay more than $0, and downloads the song from p2p.
      • Actually (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Sycraft-fu (314770)
        They don't always set the profit maximizing price and that's the real interesting thing. Sometimes they set a price that's too high, where even in a monopoly situation they'd make more money by lowering it, but they don't realise that.

        Part of this is because real economics isn't as simple as the little supply and demand curves we were shown in ECON 202. For anything that's an entertainment product, it does not ever exist in a complete monopoly situation. Even if you have a complete stranglehold on one kind
  • by stoneymonster (668767) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:47PM (#13638561) Homepage
    Some songs should be $0.99 and some songs should be more. I don't want to give anyone the impression that $0.99 is a thing of the past ... We are selling our songs through iPod, but we don't have a share of iPod's revenue

    So I guess no songs should be LESS than $0.99. Apparantely that is the minimum value for all music clips of any length or quality. Oh, and I like how they want a cut of the "iPod" revenue. Maybe they should go after CD player manufacturers and home stereo's too, by that logic. Classic.

  • kill the goose (Score:5, Insightful)

    by all your mwbassguy a (720029) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:48PM (#13638565) Homepage
    fuck the golden eggs. we demand platinum!
    • by MrAndrews (456547) <mcmNO@SPAM1889.ca> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @01:07PM (#13638709) Homepage
      It's a wonderful two-pronged attack: the goose's contract to turn out eggs expires ahead of the other egg-laying beasts in the kingdom, so insist they turn out platinum from now on. This drives people to the chicken and the ostrich - because they have no such platinum requirements for at least another year or two - and puts the goose's monopoly on eggs in the crapper. In three years, none of the birds will have any great advantage over one another, and platinum will be the new standard. Win/Win!

      It's greed, but it's brilliantly strategic greed.
  • by numbski (515011) * <numbski@@@hksilver...net> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:48PM (#13638568) Homepage Journal
    Some songs should be $0.99 and some songs should be more. I don't want to give anyone the impression that $0.99 is a thing of the past ... We are selling our songs through iPod, but we don't have a share of iPod's revenue

    So yeah. It will never be cheaper than 99 cents. We don't want to give people that 99 cents is a thing of the past, but we want a piece of the pie, and 99 cents isn't doing it.

    Real bright there guy. You suck.

    Tell you what. Let's go variable then. Songs older than 5 yrs are 50 cents. More recent non-top 100 tunes are 99 cents, and top 100 are $1.50.

    Of course that will never happen. :\
  • To have only one price point is not fair to our artists

    That's all well and nice, but raising the price of a song by ten or twenty cents means that your local artist may now receive another half-cent! Don't you feel like you're helping out now?

  • by Ckwop (707653) * <Simon.Johnson@gmail.com> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:48PM (#13638571) Homepage

    Let the market decide? Oh give me a freaking break. There is no market, not in the free market economics sense of the word anyway. I can buy petrol, gas, cars, PCs, coal, condoms or even a blowjob from any number of suppliers. This competition drives down prices and forces companies to compete on quality and price. Copyright guarentees as monopoly on your product. If I want to buy the latest white-stripes album I can only buy it from one label: V2 Records. Sure I can go to different stores to try and hunt down a lower prices but V2 set the price. The consumer only has one choice: buy it, or don't buy it. In a real free market economy the consumer has a third, more powerful option, to find a cheaper supplier.

    This is terrible for the consumer and almost always leads to disproportionate prices. Rather than supply and demand setting the price of the music, V2 can simply mandate it and then it will be so. The market becomes distorted and everybody loses except the labels. There's this idea that the artist somehow needs to be compensated for his work and that's fine but why not do it off ticket sales for concerts? I don't see why we need these artists need these government granted monopolies to make money!

    Simon

  • Price Fixing (Score:5, Insightful)

    by topham (32406) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:48PM (#13638572) Homepage
    Since when does the supplier legally tell you what you can sell a product for?

    Generally, that is considered illegal.

    But hey, who am I to talk, I haven't been convicted of price fixing, so how should I know?

    Oh wait, they have.
    • suppliers have every right to set the wholesale prices for their products. however, how the music industry has and is conducting itself is just pathetic; and if apple had a CHOICE in who to purchase their tracks from, i'm sure they'd be looking at alternatives.

      as i understand it, there's a contract up for renewal between apple and the music industry? this would just be posturing during the negotiations. normally the public isn't exposed to the bickering, lies and pissing matches between a retail outlet and
  • More? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Dexx (34621) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:49PM (#13638575) Homepage
    Some songs should be $0.99 and some songs should be more.

    How about some songs should be $0.99 and some should be less?
  • Why this is wrong (Score:3, Insightful)

    by bl968 (190792) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:49PM (#13638576) Journal
    I have posted this on slashdot before but I think it warrants posting again for this article.

    We all have seen the many publisher provided services for purchasing E-books, E-Music, and Software Downloads.

    These services try to limit your options and choices or even to remove them from you totally. With many of these services you must agree that you do not even own that which you wish to purchase in order to buy it. Instead they license you right to use their private property.

    We see the prices on the virtual which rival that of the physical. We instinctively know that the production cost of a E-book, Downloaded software, or MP3s is so much less than the cost of a compact disc or a printed book both of which require paper, ink, artwork, packaging and so much more that is totally lacking from the ethereal versions.

    Their sales decline. "Stop the thieves" they cry out into the night! Make more and harsher laws to protect that which is already protected they demand of our governments. Protect our property and damn their rights is their idea of an ideal. I am a honest person is my vehement reply. So why attempt punish me for the crimes of others.

    They attempt to smother new technology on the premise that it may possibly be used for illegal activity.

    While it is not my intention to justify the misappropriation of their material I must point out it's their own fault really. I blame their lack of foresight and their lack of anything resembling common sense. They do not exploit the markets available for them or if they do it's a halfhearted attempt. In the real world people are not buying what you sale one common step generally taken is to consider lowering your prices until your sales pick up. This also applies on the Internet.

    In a concise conclusion I state that I personally prefer to compensate the authors and composers of the material that I so enjoy in my daily life. Currently I do so off-line. So Publishing and recording industries I say make it worth my while and convenient to do so and I will be one of the first in line online.
  • Two thoughts (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Wesley Felter (138342) <wesley@felter.org> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:50PM (#13638584) Homepage
    I actually think variable pricing would be OK -- if it went the other way. Make some songs 99c and some less. After all, music is part of the computer world now, and in the computer industry prices only go down. :-)

    As for wanting a share of the music player revenue stream and needing to "monetize their product", what's wrong with the ~75c per song of pure profit that they're making now? Music labels didn't get a cut of Walkman or Discman sales; why should anything change now?
  • good point (Score:4, Insightful)

    by rnd() (118781) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:51PM (#13638594) Homepage
    The exec is exactly right. Used CD stores are proof that the market demands a lower-cost place to purchase certain songs.

    I'd like to see a DRM technology that allowed music buyers to resell the music on eBay... By allowing the owner to set the price, you allow reselling and variable pricing... the studio (original owner) could get a piece of every transaction...
  • by sameb (532621) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:52PM (#13638597) Homepage
    Do TV studios get a cut of TV sales?

    Do software developers get a cut of computer sales?

    Do game developers get a cut of console sales?

    [Insert countless other examples]

    Ummm... No.
    • Do TV studios get a cut of TV sales?

      They do in a lot of countries. (Britain, Germany, i think the Netherlands and Italy and France....)

      • Nope, not true for any EC country (would count as trade restriction).
        • by lav-chan (815252) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @01:15PM (#13638757)

          Austria: In Austria, the television & radio licence varies in price depending on which state one lives in. All are in euros and are paid annually.

          Denmark: The licence fee in Denmark is DKK 2 040 per annum for colour TV, DKK 1 310 for black and white TV and DKK 320 for radio.

          Finland: The licence fee in Finland is 193.95 per annum for TV.

          France: In 2004, the television licence fee in France (mainland & Corsica) is 116.50 and in the overseas departments (where viewers receive the Reseau France d'Outre Mer (RFO) rather than France 2-France 3-France 5-Arte) it is 74.31.

          Germany: The licence fee in Germany is 193.80 per annum for TV and radio, and 66.24 for just radio. It is billed by month, but typically paid quarterly (yearly payments are possible). Unemployed and disabled people do not need to pay the licence fee.

          Ireland: In 2005, the television licence in Ireland is 155. It is free to anyone over the age of 70 and to some over 66. The licence fee is the primary source of revenue for RTÉ, the state broadcaster; however, its radio and TV stations also broadcast advertising to supplement this income.

          Italy: In 2005, the licence fee in Italy is 99,60 per household with a TV set. It is the primary source of income for RAI, though it also broadcasts advertising.

          Norway: The licence fee in Norway is NOK 1 969 per annum (2005). The fee is mandatory for any owner of a TV set, and is the primary source of income for Norsk Rikskringkasting (NRK).

          Sweden: The licence fee in Sweden is SEK 1 920 per annum. It is collected on behalf of the public broadcasters by Radiotjänst.

          Switzerland: The licence fee in Switzerland is CHF 450.35 per annum for TV and radio.

          United Kingdom: In the United Kingdom, these fees are set by Parliament and go directly to the funding of the BBC, enabling it to run without the need for market competition. The licence fee, initially for radio sets (exempt since 1971), was mandated by the 1904 Wireless Telegraphy Act. The fee was originally 10 shillings (£0.50) and in 2005 was £126.50 for colour TV and £42 for monochrome TV. There are concessions for the elderly (free for over 75s) and blind people (50% off). Only one licence is required per household.


          In most cases it's not directly on the television itself and it only goes towards state broadcasters (as opposed to a whole industry like the parent was talking about), but it amounts to the same thing.

          • by alext (29323)
            I'm not sure what the relevance of the above is to your original statement that a share of TV sales revenue goes to broadcasters. Annual licenses are levied by the state on behalf of the broadcasters, not by the TV vendor.
  • Anyone notice how (Score:5, Insightful)

    by grasshoppa (657393) <skennedy.tpno-co@org> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @12:54PM (#13638615) Homepage
    This only makes them sound even GREEDIER than Jobs painted them.

    Sometimes, the best thing to do with a certain type of person is sit back, keep your mouth shut, and let them bury themselves.
  • how are they making less money now than with CDs/tapes? they lose all the manufacturing and overhead of a CD, and still make the same profits. BESIDES the issue of people only buying select tracks and not the stinkers, how can they complain? if ANYTHING they may lock down some things so you have to buy a whole album of songs and not the one hit.

    are they trying to make even more money out of this new technology than they traditionally have from brick and mortar record/cd/tape shops? if anything they win beca
  • ...is that they keep referring to their artists' music as "content" or "product". It just sums up their whole attitude.
  • "We are selling our songs through iPod, but we don't have a share of iPod's revenue," he said. "We want to share in those revenue streams. We have to get out of the mindset that our content has promotional value only."

    Translated from marketese this becomes:

    "Someone is making money from music, and it's not us. We don't like it. We want that money."

    So, what were they saying again, that they weren't greedy?
  • The music industry is way off base -- iTMS is a distribution channel for music.

    As such, Apple deserves to get a cut of the revenue; after all, they are doing the work of selling it.

    If the music industry were to act as a distribution channel for iPods, maybe they could claim a right to some of the revenue.

    Regarding the market setting the price for songs -- I totally agree, with one caveat: There must be a minimum amount the artist gets per download.

    If the market sets the price, I'll bet we see less p
  • To have only one price point is not fair to our artists, and I dare say not appropriate to consumers. The market should decide, not a single retailer. [Bronfman in TFA]

    No, actually, how dare he presume to speak for consumers? What's his idea of the market? Does he want to charge more for popular tracks, which we might reasonably assume sell in larger numbers thus naturally resulting in greater revenues for him and the artists, or does he want to charge more for less popular tracks so he has a greater chan

  • by swillden (191260)

    Some songs should be $0.99 and some songs should be more.

    Hmm. How interesting that he didn't say some should be less. I agree with the idea that the market should set the prices, and that those prices will inevitably land all over the place, but he wants to define a lower bound.

    I think the RIAA should pay *me* to listen to some of their crap. I know they pay other people to get me to listen to their stuff. I propose we cut out the middlemen and they just pay me directly.

  • The "firing back" seems like exactly what was said a while ago, yet this is supposedly a new article. Was something new really said by any of the recording industry, or is this just more regurgitation? Anyone have a real article? I really don't give a crap what "analysts" think.
  • by ifwm (687373)
    Betrays this guy's real thoughts.

    "Some songs should be $0.99 and some songs should be more."

    If he was REALLY interested in letting market forces decide prices, they could be less then $.99 as well.

    But you know that's not in the plans.

  • Variable Pricing (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MBCook (132727) <foobarsoft@foobarsoft.com> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @01:04PM (#13638687) Homepage
    There is nothing wrong with variable pricing. I doubt Jobs would be against it if they wanted to sell tracks for 50 cents. The problem is when they say "Variable Pricing" what they mean is "Variable Pricing ABOVE $1".
  • Article Summary (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Paladin144 (676391) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @01:08PM (#13638716) Homepage
    here's the quick version:

    Apple: "You guys are greedy."

    RIAA goons like Bronfman: "We're not greedy. We just want all that money Apple is making. We don't want to do any extra work or promotion. Just send us more cash."
  • by mmarlett (520340) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @01:11PM (#13638733)
    Let the market decide the price? Well, Napster will let you have access to 1,000,000 for $10 per month. Now, it's not really far to say that $10/1,000,000 is the price, because you can't listen to that many songs in a month. An average month has roughly 44,000 minutes in it. Figure an average person will sleep through a third of that (eight of 24 hours), and (let's through the industry a bone and say that I'm a shallow teenager with no attention span) a poop -- sorry, pop -- song is 2.5 minutes long, that's about 5,849 songs that I can listen to for $10. That means each song is worth $0.0017 -- a tenth of one cent.

    The free market rocks!

    Wait... wait a second. He didn't say anything about being cheaper than 99 cents, did he? Crap.
  • by geoff lane (93738) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @01:41PM (#13638938)
    ...is aware that Apple might start dealing directly with the artists? Of course, they would have to come to a deal with the other Apple, but I'm sure that wouldn't be a huge problem.

    There is no reason at all that the artists need a middle man taking his cut and doing nothing but reduce their income by being stupid.

  • by edibleplastic (98111) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @01:44PM (#13638962)
    Let the music industry find another online music store that's willing to sell the songs at variable prices. Then that store can compete with iTMS and the market will decide which pricing scheme is better. That's the way the market will decide, not by the suppliers forcing Apple to sell the music and different prices.
  • Like hell you do! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by TheHawke (237817) <rchapin&pelicancoast,net> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @01:44PM (#13638964)
    Jobs is batting a 1,000 on this one. "The music industry has done little or nothing to earn the raw profit off of iTunes sales."

    The rebuttal from the industry shows how ignorant they are of the new economy structure that has been in place, for how long? 6 years.

    My God people.. Wake up! It's the 21st century and you are employing your goons and torpedos in old-fashioned payola tactics and strong-arming old women for the sake of a few bucks instead of embracing the new economy.
  • by Chuqmystr (126045) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @02:06PM (#13639085) Homepage

    There is obviously a transition, albeit slow, at hand. I read and hear more and more often of known musicians doing their own recording and there's a growing number of indie artists doing everything from soup to nuts - meaning recording, producing and marketing their own content. I wish things would speed up. What does it take for this trend to gain momentum? How come I don't see these artist who are involved in producing and marketing their own content banding together and creating their own marketing campaigns to promote purchasing music online? A campaign in direct challenge to these goddamned douche-bag record companies crap anti-piracy/it's not fair to our artists three ring circus?

    Here's what things I see needing to happen before everyone can fully give the labels the collective finger

    • Like I said above, artists need to band together and have a common voice that is well heard. They need to educate the public of the benefits for everyone of buying music online. I also don't see a reason why record stores cannot buy and resell the same music. There's some other possibilities in that idea alone I'll get to later.
    • Artists, producers, recording engineers and marketeers need to tell the labels to go shove things up their big fat collective ass and set out on their own. Ok, we don't need the marketing guys either, my bad. The way I see it artists can hire producers and engineers as need be. Producers and engineers can also go about setting up their own studios and labels. These "micro labels" could be more versatile and contract themselves to artists who have their own studios as well as providing the entire package. They could offer multiple sales outlets such as direct sales, making a deal with itunes, or basically giving the artist pressed media and masters to go sell on their own.
    • We need more stores like itunes and they all need to agree on some standards, eg DRM (it will never go away so we'd best figure how to make it easy to live with) format of files, licensing and probably a lot of other things I'm overlooking. Hey, Lord Steveness, if you really want to take the world by storm and piss off "da man" then why in the fuck don't you quit dry humping your giant, inflatable luv ipod and stat licensing your music tech to those who want it? You could sell the "build your own itunes store" in a box. You could be selling Garage Band and some well polished editing/recording apps all rolled up in a studio packaged G5, and, OMG, it one-click [uh, better make that 3 clicks or Bezos will sick a lawyer on you] publishes to "iTunes in a box". Oh, and thee other digital music player manufacturers have well proven that they just can't make something as cool as the ipod so you might as well license your DRM to them as well. Hell, look at Motorola, you gave them the entire thing, interface, DRM and the name association and they still managed to fuck it up. My point is your precious ipod is safe. You need to take full advantage of what it has built for you. Geeze Steve, you could pwnz0r the music industry. I could go on this tirade for a *very* long time.
    • Music stores could play a big role in all this. Why shouldn't the artists and micro-labels sell to them or sell from the shops on consignment? People are still going to want to buy CDs for a very long time to come and probably some other medium beyond that. I also envision kiosks in these stores where folks can purchase music electronically and burn CD's or even upload playlists they've just compiled to their players. Um, retail version of itunes there Steve-o?

    In short. revolt, tear it all down and then all of you people out there in the industry who have an honest and useful talent step up and rebuild it. There's no reason you shouldn't continue making a living and there's every reason to rethink your business and end up making much happier customers and in turn making yourself a really nice living. To hell with fighting the existing recording industry. To hell with them, go around them. What law exists that sa

  • by funkdid (780888) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @02:06PM (#13639088)
    I remember going to Sam Goody at the local mall and each and every Casette Single was $2.99 if you wanted the hot new single on CD, it was $4.99, all of them. The Record Industry didn't mind that. They never argues that once a song hit #1 the single should cost $3.50, odd I think. Wait odd isn't the word, it's BULLSHIT! Yes that was the word that I was looking for. This man is full of shit. Thank you
  • by Nom du Keyboard (633989) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @02:12PM (#13639114)
    And for my next demand, I want a law forcing all consumers to buy our products at the prices we, in our infinite wisdom, set for them. No more of this voting with your pocketbook -- or feet stuff. After all, we are vital to the American economy -- and yacht salesmen everywhere!
  • by mduell (72367) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @03:29PM (#13639666)
    A lot of people are griping that this exec only sees a need for pricing above $0.99.
    People, read the news!

    "That's not to say we want to raise prices across the board or that we don't believe in a 99-cent price point for most music," he said. "But there are some songs for which consumers would be willing to pay more. And some we'd be willing to sell for less."

    I think the $0.99 model for any song is stupid, because it doesn't reflect the value of the song. Some songs should sell for $0.01 and some should sell for $10.00.
  • Feedback loop (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Have Blue (616) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @03:38PM (#13639748) Homepage
    He's also forgetting that once there's a disincentive to downloading popular songs, they're going to get downloaded less, and since the music charts themselves are based on the quantities purchased, the top songs will fall down the charts and into a lower price bracket, thus simultaneously making the charts meaningless and ensuring that the music industry won't actually realize the extra profit this move was supposed to give them. Brilliant.
  • Say it ain't so (Score:3, Informative)

    by mr_rattles (303158) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @03:57PM (#13639907) Homepage
    We want to share in those revenue streams
    I'm sorry but how is that not greedy?

    And as a consumer I think $.99 for every song is MUCH better than a variable pricing scheme. I can buy any song knowing it's only going to cost me a buck and don't have to worry about that random $3 song that I otherwise would not have bought.
  • by mcc (14761) <amcclure@purdue.edu> on Saturday September 24, 2005 @04:01PM (#13639935) Homepage
    "and I dare say not appropriate to consumers" ????

    If this guy thinks that songs should be sold for more than $0.99, then he should go ahead and do so. I mean, really, go ahead and start selling songs for more than that and see how that works out. He is perfectly free to set up his own online music store, and because of the extreme flexibility of the technology involved, this will just involve getting the files on to your portable music player from a URL instead of from the iTunes application.

    Once he has done this he can set the songs in his music store to cost $1.99 or $5.00 or $53.00 or absolutely whatever price he likes, and if people choose to buy it then all of that money will go right to him. While of course meanwhile the iTunes Music Store will still be back there offering quality music at $0.99 a song.

    Then the market will decide for itself. That's what he says he wants, right?
  • by Todd Knarr (15451) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @05:13PM (#13640436) Homepage

    I think the music industry's problem is that the market has decided, and it's decided it doesn't like the music industry's standard terms. The music industry doesn't like that decision and is trying everything they can including whining like a spoiled brat to get it changed. Unfortunately for them, the market isn't buying it (in several senses).

  • by chill (34294) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @07:08PM (#13641110) Journal
    "Some songs should be $0.99 and some songs should be more."

    He forgot "and some songs should be less". That is, if he really wants to let the market decide.

    Jobs was right, the industry is greedy.

      -Charles
  • by st0rmshad0w (412661) on Saturday September 24, 2005 @07:36PM (#13641256)
    Didn't the market already decide digital music should be free?

    Just sayin...

Passwords are implemented as a result of insecurity.

Working...