U2 Manager States That The Silicon Valley Hippies Should Pay Record Industry!

Sometimes people should really think before getting all het up methinks. Judge for yourselves – I’d be interested in your opinions.

As I’ve mentioned in earlier items, the finger is being pointed at the ISP’s now for file sharing but U2’s manager of 30-years, Paul McGuinness, goes even further in a talk at the Midem conference where he blamed Silicon Valley’s “hippie values” for creating the problem.

So not only taking a swipe at the ISPs, but also Google, Apple, Microsoft, Facebook and basically every other successful tech company. There are so many problems with this, it’s difficult to know where to begin, but let’s tackle a few of the quotes:

First he blames these companies who have “built multibillion dollar industries on the back of our content without paying for it.”

Complementary goods are natural for building bigger markets, but no one expects one side to pay the other just for moral reasons. The oil industry’s success is built on the backs of the automobile industry, but does the automobile industry demand that oil companies have a moral obligation to pay them?

“I call on them to do two things: first, taking responsibility for protecting the music they are distributing; and second, by commercial agreements, sharing their enormous revenues with the content makers and owners.”

Embedded deep down in the brilliance of those entrepreneurial, hippie values seems to be a disregard for the true value of music.”

First, this shows a misunderstanding about the difference between price and value.

Just remember that U2 pulled in $355 million on its last tour.

The fact that a new generation of fans are learning about U2 from downloading its music for free and exchanging tunes just like we all have done since the tape recorder was invented may well have helped! Instead of looking at it as lost revenue how about looking at it as free advertising?

More money is being made on concert revenue than ever before. More artists are making music than ever before. More music is being heard than ever before. Even more musical instruments are being sold than ever before in the past. Yet, because one segment of the market (the one selling plastic discs) is unwilling to take some simple steps to change its business model, everyone else has to pay up?

Personally I think the main pointers in this are the differences between value and price and also the point that I have raised before – that of changing the old, established and now outmoded business models.

As an artist – I write and perform music for people to enjoy and as long as I get enough money to cover costs I am happy. I realise that if you rely solely on sales revenue to survive that will be a totally different ball-game but on the other hand why attempt to fight your fans? Why not listen and adapt to what they, the consumers, are asking for?

Full article here: Techdirt.