You would think that record companies would embrace new mediums, which enable listeners to discover new music, listen more often, and buy more as a result. Well, you probably wouldn’t think that, since by now everyone knows that record companies seem to want the exact opposite, given their 30-year track record of lawsuits, burying new formats, dreaming up more and more restrictions, and horrendous digital rights management for online downloads.
The whole Internet radio spat is just another example. CNET News writer Sherwin Siy said in a new article that “behind closed doors, the record companies are turning a fee negotiation into a bid to control what applications and file types you can use to play online music.”
The irony is that restricting Internet Radio and “stream ripping” won’t do anything, Siy said, since people pirate music by buying unprotected CDs and uploading them to the Internet in MP3 format. It has nothing to do with Internet radio.
“So if DRM for Webcasts won’t prevent piracy, why do the record labels want it? The reason is that requiring these digital locks gives the record industry more control over your music. The objective is to make every step in the process of moving music around involve a flow of cash to the labels, even if that movement is ‘me to me’–from my CD to my computer, or from your computer to your iPod.” The more things change…