Steven Meinking on 16 Aug 2000 00:26:15 -0000

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re: <nettime> Terror In Tune Town

I actually wanted to wade into this discussion some time ago, but have 
been far too busy. Scot's most recent response prompted me to participate. 

> However as a musician, I don't find much positive development in either
> Napster, or its trenchant corporate opposition. It, and others eg
> etc, are just the *new* record company; one that doesn't ever pay its
> artists anything. Its just corporations fighting other corporations with
> rarely a thought of the people they claim to represent.

I completely disagree with the above for several reasons, and the
statement concerning MP3.Com is blatantly false. 

I am a musician/songwriter as well. So you have an idea of where I'm
coming from, I am against intellectual property of any kind. If Napster
has succeeded in doing anything at all, it has been the loosening of the
bonds of distribution and the critical raising of the issue of
intellectual property rights. I consider both accomplishments positive
developments, particularly in the wake of the death grip the recording
industry has had on music for several decades now. 

As for Mp3.Com, how can I complain. I joined them around the time they
were just gathering steam, a little over a year and a half ago. My music
is extremely diverse and very unconventional. Realistically, it had no
chance of making a major label and thus of never being heard. Mp3.Com
provided me an opportunity to make my music available to an audience I
never could have dreamed of reaching, and without direct cost to me to
boot. Thanks to Mp3.Com the world has been my stage and I've had over
fifteen thousand people download or listen to my songs since joining their

However, that simple gratification was not the end. I have also made a
considerable amount of money through cd sales and pay-4-play downloading,
money which I have been paid by Mp3.Com. Considering the fact that I never
expected to make any money at all and that making music is just a hobby, I
am rather pleased that my work and effort does not go entirely unrewarded. 

Mp3.Com still has a long way to go in terms of building rapport with the
artists under its wing, and they really are nothing more than a _new_
record company, but they have paid me, I still control my music's
availability and distribution, and my music continues to be heard around
the world. I fail to see the negative development in that. 

Yours in auditory waves,

Steven Meinking

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