Why buy my CDs here?
I don't make a PENNY if you buy my CDs from @m@zon or ANY OTHER huge on-line store. I don't make a CENT if you buy my Music from any physical retail store. I make a few "micro-cents" if you download my tunes from iTunes or Rhapsody or over a thousand other on-line download services: I make .0016 cents per song. My most recent check for the entire year was for $167.55. Click here to see my iTunes catalogue. See articles for the truth about copyrights and on-line "sanctioned" theft. Apple is now all set to pay me 0.0007 microcents!!!
Now, don't feel guilty if you downloaded my music from iTunes or Rhapsody or Spotify or thousands of other sites... don't be bummed if you bought my CDs from @m@zon or Bestbuy or CD Universe or thousands of other outlets, physical or digital. It's cheap and easy. And lots of people find it hard to believe that a musician could be so ubiquitous and not be compensated. Just understand that this is the Digital Age, and piracy is the rule because no other rules are in place. Yet. And remember - the record company executives that I recorded for DO get paid. They own the copyrights. And the copyright lawyers control most of the download revenue and where it ends up. Imagine that. Click on the iTunes image below.
IF YOU BUY AT @M@ZON: money is stolen from me daily by record producers and executives, CEO's and CFO's. I have NEVER received ONE PENNY. 70 CDs and 45 years of work. Click here to see all of the money that is stolen from me daily. 70 CDs and over 40 years of work.
CHECK THIS OUT! Resellers/carpetbaggers are stealing them directly from my web site - see below.
PREDATORY CAPITALISM. It happens when art and music disappear from any culture. It is the reason for the #Occupy Movement. It is the reason that nearly 60 million Americans live in poverty, and that 1/4 of our children go hungry every day. Greed. It heralds the Fall of Empires. And it is not so much that the money corrupts, but that money in large quantities attracts the corruptible. And you are NOT supposed to know this.
My solution has been to cloister myself, to retreat, and to seek the Golden Path or whatever you'd like to call it. Ego is the enemy of art and I claim no special knowledge of noble purposes. I may starve, but my music and my soul will remain uncorrupted. To prevent starvation, I started this business in 1997 when I saw the direction that art, music, political discourse, and education was taking here in our country and across much of the world. So far I am successful. Still, the signs of decay and hostility between the poles of a hugely divided class system is evident. Things will not stand as they are. My temporary solution:
IF YOU BUY FROM ME DIRECTLY: you get FREE SHIPPING to anywhere in the USA. Overseas and Canadian orders add $10 shipping. All orders sent FIRST CLASS PRIORITY AIR and ship within 7 to 10 days. We take Visa, Mastercard, and Discover... plus my signature on the CD if you request it. Buy directly from me, here at my own web site. Free stuff abounds.
Although many content creators (artists, musicians, writers, poets, etc) have fought hard against the huge corporate takeover of the on-line download and file-sharing community, we're losing ground. New legislation is in the works, but will take years to implement. CDs as a physical product have "gone away" while free and subscription services have replaced them.
The creators no longer receive ANY money from sales of their work due to our short-sighted Congress and the huge corporate monopolies that now control ALL of the music business AND our Congress. Many "experts" (yes, even Senators) argue that artists deserve NO COMPENSATION for their work, as we create an unnecessary commodity.
That's the reason I started my own web site, and why I started my own publishing company, and why I started my own CD company. If you buy my Music here, I get paid. And I will SIGN the CDs for you.
(Postscript: I have been notified that I am breaking the law by selling my own music, by many different LLC's using many different tactics, all to no avail yet. Before you try to shut me down, be warned, PREDATORY CAPITALISTS: I am a legal company with a real UID and BIN #, armed with real documents, issued by real State and Federal agencies, and I have lawyers too. I am a real record company and I belong to IODA and ASCAP and SoundExchange and MusicReports and many more "policing" agencies and I am ALSO protected, just like you, by the Copyright Laws of the United States of America. Give it up, if only to save the taxpayers more of the costs incurred by stealing companies and firing employees.)
Musicians Earn What????
New York City : NY : USA | Jan 1, 2012 at 11:56 PM PST, BY Sherrill Fulghum ￼
It was not too long ago that a music fan could walk into an actual record (or music) store and peruse thousands of record albums, CDs, and singles; but today almost the only place to find an actual CD in the United States is at a live concert or the used book sale at the local library. nCurrently most of the music purchased in the United States comes from digital downloads. The Daily Swarm has released some startling statistics on just what it takes for a musician to make a living in the music business.
When a musician or a band has a deal with a record company, the artist receives seven to 10 percent of each album or CD sold. With digital download services the artist receives about nine cents per song.
In the US there is a national minimum wage for workers of $7.25 per hour (some areas pay more). This translates into $1,160 per month before taxes. For artists to earn the same amount as a minimum wage worker, they would have to sell 1,161 physical CDs, 1,299 digitally downloaded albums, or 12,399 singles.
And when it comes to audio streaming services, it can take anywhere from 849,817 plays to over four million plays to make the same amount of money. What makes this even more difficult is that the various audio streaming and digital download services are not available everywhere.
- Emusic is available in 27 countries
- iTunes is available in 23 countries
- YouTube is available in 21 countries
- Vodafone is available in 17 countries
- 7Digital is available in 16 countries
- Spotify is available in 12 countries
- Last.fm is available in 10 countries
- Amazon is available in six countries
- Deezer is available in four countries
- Pandora and Rhapsody are available in only one country
These numbers do not take into account the number of hours an artist or a band spends practicing each day, the time spent writing songs, and recording those songs. For many musicians the only real source of an income is by touring and some bands spend more time on the road then they do at home trying to survive making music. And just because the concert figures reach into the millions, the artist does not get most of it; that goes to the venue, roadies, technicians, lighting and sound engineers, and any number of “expenses”.
Like the best selling writers, there is a very small percentage of musicians who regularly make millions each year from touring and album sales; while the majority strive to eek out a living,
Making music can be fun but for the professional musician it is also a lot of hard work that often times shows very little in physical return.
Sherrill Fulghum is based in Niagara Falls, New York, United States of America, and is an Anchor for Allvoices.
December 15, 2011 - How “Digital Parasites” Have Hurt Songwriters and What Songwriters Can Do To Fight Back
By Erik Philbrook
In his new book, Free Ride: How Digital Parasites are Destroying the Culture Business, and How the Culture Business Can Fight Back, longtime Rolling Stone contributor Robert Levine tackles head-on the subject of digital piracy and how tech giants such as Apple and Google are booming while the creators of content keep getting hurt. He argues forcefully for stronger copyright protection and offers ways to reach that goal. Levine recently talked to Playback about some of the issues he discusses in his book.
Where did the saying "Information wants to be free" originate and who pushed that idea out into the world?
It's a quote, but it doesn't mean what people think it means. The original meaning is a quote by Stewart Brand, who founded the Whole Earth Catalog. His original quote is actually "Information wants to be free. Information also wants to be expensive…that tension will not go away." What he was talking about is basically the idea that the cost of transmitting information is getting lower and lower every year. But the cost of creating that information doesn't go away.
For example, if I am writing a song, transmitting that song online is essentially free. Transmitting it around gets cheaper every year. What about writing a song? That's not done automatically. That's what Stewart Brand meant, but the quote has been perverted by people who started saying that information should be free as a "motto" but that's just a misunderstanding.
And that idea fed into Chris Anderson's thesis in his book Free: The Future of a Radical Price?
Right. He believes that digital drives the cost of content down to zero, or near its marginal cost? But this idea about pricing things accordingly with marginal cost comes from, like, the auto business. It's not relevant to our business. If you think about it, can you think of anything in media that has been priced in its marginal cost. Back in the 50's, a piece of vinyl anything was never priced in its marginal cost. Media is not a marginal-priced business. Even a book. I think a hardback book is probably the most expensive piece of mass media. It cost $3.50. A piece of celluloid film cost $1,500. But no one ever suggested you should sell that piece of celluloid for $1,500. To say that you price things to hit marginal cost is a total misunderstanding of the media business.
Do you think that this "free culture" ideology has infiltrated the tech giants since so many people in positions of power are younger and have grown up with easy access to music and other intellectual property?
The idea that other people's stuff should be free is not an ideology. Calling it an ideology is giving it a dignity that it doesn't deserve. It's not an ideology, it's an illusion.
What you have is people making money from content, and they want to be able to keep making money from content. People who make money distributing content without paying for it will want to continue making money by not paying for it. They can say they are doing things for the good of the country, or whatever, but they are not doing anything that is not in their own selfish interests. Google is championing free culture because they make a lot of money distributing other people's stuff.
Most people who work in the music industry love and value music. Many who work in book publishing love and value books. What, besides the obvious, do you feel those who work for technology companies value?
A lot of people in the tech industry are driven by a passion for technology. I think if you look at how those organization behave, they tend to behave in a much more rational way.
Fundamentally, Google is about spreading technology and making money. But I think people get confused and they think ASCAP wants to restrict the Internet and Google wants to spread the Internet. That's nonsense. ASCAP wants to make money for your members and Google wants to make money for their shareholders. Now, I'm more sympathetic to your point of view because ASCAP is a more like a union than a corporation. Technically, we're a not-for profit membership organization.
Right. And your members did the damn work. But, even still. You can get up on a stage and say people will do better work if we pay them and we will all have a better market. But some people will look at you like it's the most radical thing you said all day. But isn't that common knowledge? You give me money, I'm going to work harder, write a better book, whatever. That's the basic of economics.
In your book you discuss Google and their ties to other groups who are actively trying to sway public opinion and lobby Congress on their behalf. Tell me a little more about the more prominent organizations and individuals?
As I did research for the book, I was shocked by all the money that Google spends on funding these organizations. They are non-neutral organizations. Two weeks after Google bought YouTube, they made a two million dollar donation to Stanford Law School. Stanford Law School announced that the money would go toward establishing a balance between ownership and the right to access information. Now, there's two issues with that. One, the right to access information is missing from my copy of the Constitution. I like the right to access information but I am not aware that it's a constitutional right.
Access to information is a public good; it's a wonderful thing. It's just not a right. Stanford Law School says that they do not expect donations that are geared toward a specific thing. But then on the other hand, they announced what they were doing with this money. The question is should we take a look at this because it's Google's money? I think yes.
Now, Creative Commons is pushing Google's agenda. The mother-in-law of Sergey Brin [co-founder of Google], who has no background in law and no background in copyright, is Vice of their board. She is there because Sergey Brin gave a lot of money. This is not serving the best interest for artists; this is serving the best interests for Google. People say that Creative Commons is doing important work and what they're trying to do is great, but if you want to have a serious, respected organization it needs to have a serious respected board. What you have now is a joke, so if you want to be taken seriously, put artists on the board.
What are your feelings about the tech companies' opposition to the PROTECT IP Act?
People on the other side don't say, "Hey, we have certain problems with these certain parts of the PROTECT IP Act." They say, "We don't want any legislation at all, things are fine." I think it's time for the other side, if they don't like this act, to come up with another solution to protect our rights.
What's the most important message songwriters should take away from your book?
You have rights. You have the right to get paid for distribution, reproduction and public performances of your work. You have the right to control your work. You might not always want to use them. But that doesn't mean that they are not important and that doesn't mean that you should give them away. Let alone give them away to large corporations.
What can songwriters and composers do on a day-to-day basis that can help protect the value of their work?
Know the value of your work and don't give it away too cheaply. Even if what you do is a hobby to you, it's a business to somebody else, and that business has expenses. Another thing, if you do something for a discount or promotional basis, make sure it's not permanent. If you want to give your songs away, then give your songs away. Don't sign a Creative Commons license, because you can't take it back. A Creative Commons deal is like one of those old record deals. Like when you sign away your rights in exchange for a Cadillac. But with this deal, you don't get a car.
POSTED ON JANUARY 26, 2012 BY PATRICK MAINES
Though the final chapter in the legislative history of the copyright bills hasn’t yet been written, a couple things are obvious even now: The tech industry has demonstrated great political clout through the mobilization of its users and fan base; and the industry lobby, led by Google, will say and do pretty much anything to advance its commercial interests. This provides the background for what happened within just a few days last week, as Congress was flooded with calls and mail, and petitions were signed by millions, in opposition to bills whose intent was to provide an effective way to combat content infringement on rogue websites abroad. Didn’t matter that most fans of social media, file-sharing, blogs, and the like know next to nothing about communications policymaking, or even the details of the laws they were moved to oppose. They know what they like, and dislike, and when manipulated into seeing the copyright bills as a threat they responded in great numbers.
None of which, of course, is to wonder why people feel more of a kinship with things like the social media than they do with the mainstream media. The one-way and “one-to-the-many” aspects of the old media don’t empower people, or allow for their personal expression, in the manner of blogs or social media like Facebook and YouTube.
But the reason so many people were disposed to dislike the copyright bills, and their knowledge of what was actually in them, are two different things. What moved them to act on their dislike was yet another. For these parts of the story we have to look to the tech industry lobby, and Google most importantly. It was Google that floated the canard that passage of the bills would forever change “the Internet as we’ve known it.”
The irony in Google’s claim was apparently lost on most of the media, tech and mainstream, which may explain why so few reporters pointed out that this alleged threat is word-for-word what the company said, 13 years ago, in opposition to another copyright bill (the Digital Millennium Copyright Act), passage of which has since proven to be a positive boon to Internet companies.
It may also explain why so few reporters pointed out that Google’s claims about the copyright bills – as precursors to the regulation of the Internet – are not just over the top but hypocritical. It was, after all, Google that successfully lobbied, with the active help of a majority of FCC Commissioners, for so-called “network neutrality” regulations, the precedent of which provides not for just speculative but “here and now” regulation of the Internet.
Still, if crass exaggeration and hypocrisy were all that Google displayed in this regard, one might be inclined just to dismiss it as boys being boys. But it didn’t stop there. Google, and other groups that should know better, also gave expression and currency to the bunkum that the copyright bills amounted to an assault on the First Amendment.
That this argument was utterly demolished by the country’s leading First Amendment expert, Floyd Abrams, didn’t give them a moment’s pause, with the upshot being that this nonsense was parroted by all sorts of people as a reason for rejection of the bills. In August of last year, The Media Institute filed a white paper with the Federal Trade Commission titled “Google and the Media: How Google is Leveraging its Position in Search to Dominate the Media Economy.” Among other things, the paper demonstrated the ways in which Google profits from copyright infringement; that indeed the use of other people’s content without their permission has been at the heart of the company’s business plan.
Though the paper didn’t recommend any particular remedy, it asked the FTC to intervene in a way that would prevent the media economy from being dominated by a single entity. Google’s conduct regarding the copyright legislation shows that, far from pulling back, its interest in this kind of domination is growing apace.
The opinions expressed above are those of the writer and not of The Media Institute, its Board, contributors, or advisory councils. This piece was first published in the Dallas Morning News on Jan. 25, 2012.
Alright, let’s get this straight right off the bat. I opposed SOPA. I opposed PIPA. I think the RIAA and MPAA are vindictive, greedy people. I think it’s ridiculous that little Sally can be fined thousands of dollars for downloading a copy of “Tik Tok” that she can buy on iTunes for a buck. However, I hate piracy. As a CS major, this puts me squarely in the minority of my peers. It’s kind of like an EnvE major saying, “I wish the government would stop investing in green energy.” Piracy apparently just comes with the territory of being in computing.
But really, being anti-piracy makes sense to me, especially professionally. I’m going into a field where me and several dozen (if not several hundred) others will pour months of effort into designing, coding and testing a product. If someone pirates a copy of that, they’re robbing my company (and, through my stock’s value and my paycheck, me) of a sale on something that we bled for.
Of course, this is usually the point in the conversation where piracy advocates break out all the old arguments. Pirates wouldn’t have bought it anyway, if it’s actually worth something, people will pay for it, open source is the way of the future, etc. etc. etc. I don’t put much stock in these arguments, and here’s why. At the end of the day, piracy boils down to the pirate getting something that inherently has value without giving anything in return. Whether the pirate and the producer agree on how much value is irrelevant; if I as the producer of a piece of IP say, “I think this is worth X,” then it is entirely within my rights to want people to either pay X for it or not use it.
The problem is that we have been conditioned by the Internet to believe that something-for-nothing is the norm and we get angry with companies that have the audacity to expect to get paid for their work.
Really, though, people who pirate things don’t bother me. Let’s be honest here: If I really had a problem with pirates, I wouldn’t have many friends here at Tech, would I?
The people who really annoy me are the pirates that try to act like they’re taking the high road by pirating. The ones who talk about how they’re supporting indie filmmakers by pirating mainstream Hollywood movies. The ones think that paying $20 for things like the “Humble Indie Bundle” justifies stealing $400 worth of top-10 games. And, my particular favorites, the ones who act like anything that interferes with their pirating abilities is a mortal threat to our freedoms. Some, like SOPA and PIPA, really are. Others — not so much.
One case in particular makes me laugh. Recently, the Internet has been all a-twitter (or, more accurately, all a-reddit) over the takedown of filesharing site Megaupload. People have been screaming about how this shows that the evils of SOPA are already upon us, that the government is in the pockets of the MPAA and that this case puts other sites—like Dropbox, and other storage services—at risk of a similar shutdown.
Frankly, I think this is ridiculous. The difference between sites like Megavideo and sites like Dropbox is night and day. The indictment against Megaupload even goes so far as to lay out why the services aren’t the same. There’s a big difference between a service primarily used to shuffle documents between coworkers and a service almost exclusively used to illegally watch copyrighted movies and TV shows.
In a nutshell, I opposed SOPA because I saw it as a unnecessary piece of legislation that threatened the openness of the Internet without offering much in the way of shutting down piracy. I support the shutdown of Megaupload because I see it as an effective application of existing law, to shut down and obvious and repeated infringer of IP rights.
Listen, I’m all for encouraging businesses to look at new models that allow for more open exchange of IP. I’m against suing the pants off of people for downloading a song. I think IP laws should encourage creativity.
But I think it’s hypocritical to expect people to pay for things we make when we won’t pay for movies and music. I think musicians, developers and filmmakers have a right to make a living off of their work. I think studios and record labels have a right to make a profit on the development and advertising they do for their artists. I think these companies have a right to run their businesses how they see fit. And, most importantly, I think they have every right to expect the government to protect these rights, and for consumers to respect them.
By Gavin Castleton, a songwriter and producer from Portland, OR, Copyright 2012 Gavin Castleton. Used by permission of the author.
• Promoting “Buy Now” links on album pages and next to individual tracks.
• Allowing artists to edit their own profiles.
• Displaying links to artists’ websites, FB pages, twitter profiles, etc.
• Allowing users to “Like” and “Follow” an artist right from the Artist page.
• Allowing users to sign up for artists’ email list from the Artist page.
• Serving ads in a way that did not encourage users to interrupt their listening mid-album/playlist in order to listen to or do something else.
• Paying independent artists the same rates as major label artists (One could argue that major labels should be paid lower rates than independents, since their overall revenue from Spotify is offset by an 18% share of the company).
• Paying artists a flat rate for their streams, instead of tying their royalty rate to advertising revenue over which the artist has no control. Artists should not be taking on risk along with Spotify unless they’re also given stock options in the company. The current Spotify model treats artists like investors but without any [equity-type] long-term benefits.
Some links (there are thousands more to google...)
- To sign a Bill of Rights endorsing the payment of a musician for his or her work, click here
- Too good to miss: why the Executives really deserve MY money
- Read an article by Chris Castle
- Read an AltPress article here
- See a great cartoon about this subject by the great Tom Tomorrow
- Apple is all set to pay me 0.0007 microcents!!!
Click below for "Starving the Artist by William Aiche, and google "How much do musicians make on-line"
- Ms Williams won't make ONE PENNY if you buy her music from anywhere but here, from this web site.
- Most of Jessica Williams' best music is NOT AVAILABLE from ANY web site or store but from RIGHT HERE.
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- It's safer to buy here. We never store your personal information on a computer. Jessica Williams personally fills the orders herself and erases your info from all hard drives. Every time you buy here, you must re-enter your info. No passwords. Not one theft or loss in all the years we've run this site.
- If you request it in the text box at the bottom of our secure order page, Jessica will sign the CDs for you.
- Signed by Jessica if you wish
- Customer testimonials
- Server-side cgi security
- First Class Air to anywhere in the USA, FREE
- Contact us
- For overseas and Canada, add $10 s/h
This site is dedicated to John Coltrane, Glenn Gould, Elvin Jones, Mary Lou Williams, Dexter Gordon, Miles Davis, Thelonious Monk, Philly Joe Jones, Tony Williams, and all who have devoted their lives and their souls to Music. "I want to be a force for good. I know there are bad forces here that bring suffering to others and misery to the world, but I want to be the force which is truly good." - John Coltrane