D.DAY | Caught in the (Re-)Mix: Musicians taking control

Caught in the (Re-)Mix: Musicians taking control

12 June 2014 | Soho House Berlin

“When everything on the Internet seems to be available for free, why pay?”

While the digitization of creative production tools has enabled myriads of creative minds to produce and publish their work online, the current model is failing to reward artists for their work. Since the early days, when platforms like PirateBay with its BitTorrent-Links or Napster made it possible to download almost every existing song without paying, the music industry has been transformed. Only later with the success of iTunes, Amazon Marketplace – and more recently Pandora and Spotify – has music been generating revenue online. But who benefits from these payments? Which artists are getting paid? Which platforms help artists‘ careers? And what role do royalty collection entities play?

The fight between a free-for-all-Internet and a regulated pay-per-use-Internet is a dividing philosophical question. However a shift has been taking place in the industry as internet pioneers like Jaron Lanier back away from their early free-internet euphoria, to a more critical view, demanding, that all digital activity should be financially compensated.

As the influence of Google, YouTube, Twitter and Facebook grows, music industry stakeholders are examining their rights to secure the future of free creative production as well as payment mechanisms.

At d.day we discussed with Marc Chung and Robert Levine how the structure of music production and distribution has changed in the digital age and which strategies can be pursued to succeed in a Social Media driven industry.