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News Scorecard

A Big One For Us
The U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary will hold a hearing on Thursday at 2PM, on the INDUCE Act. The record label cartel did not want these hearings. The fact that they’re happening at all reflects the enormous amount of opposition among members of the mainstream electronics industry and grassroots efforts like ours and the EFF’s. It’s a big win.

A Small One For Them
Six more schools signed on to give all their students Napster accounts. We’d be suprised if this is more than a short term trend for a couple reasons. First, schools are only signing on when given huge discounts and incentives that probably aren’t sustainable. Second, since students can’t save the songs, burn them to CDs, or put them on mp3 players, schools are finding that filesharing usage doesn’t decline meaning liability doesn’t decline (which from their perspective is the whole point).

A Big One For Us
The merger of Sony Music and BMG is finally moving ahead. This means that we’ll be down to 4 major labels from 5. Some people worry that this means even less music diversity– in fact it’s a symbolic step on the road towards being totally free from the major label homogenization machine. As the majors continue to cut back and merge, more and more opportunities for independent music will open up around the edges.

A Key Trend For Us
Duke University just announced that they’ll give an iPod to all 1,650 members of the upcoming freshman class. This means that they’ve just quadrupled the amount of music that each freshman is able to listen to. iPod-mania is not just about the latest gadgetry– it’s literally redefining the way that our society experiences music, in mostly good ways. Do not underestimate what this will mean for the industry and everyone who cares about music.

So… 3 for us, 1 for them. Not too bad.

It’s been quiet around here because we’ve got some things brewing that we’re very focused on. Stay tuned.

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