A couple interesting stories that are related in my mind as they pertain to IP and the level of control that IP owners exert over their product:

Verizon Plans Wider Options for Cellphone Users

Carriers like AT&T and Verizon Wireless, which is a joint venture between Verizon and Vodafone, have spent billions on cell towers and other infrastructure, and traditionally they have tightly controlled what happens on their networks.

They decide what phones subscribers can use and then steer them toward ring tones, television shows and other products they can buy.

I’m not sure that this will be better for the providers, but in the long term I think it’ll be good for the industry. There has been a lot of frustration at the unwillingness of consumers to spend a lot of money for things to put on their phone. They’ll pay $2.50 for a ringtone, sure, but when it comes to music and games sales have been anemic. The main reason for this, I think, is that these things are often not transferrable from one phone to the next and it further locks them into their provider. I know that’s one of the big reasons that I’ve stayed away from investing in my phone. Giving customers more confidence in this regard will be a good thing, saying nothing of the benefits of increased competition.

Report: EMI looking to slash funding for RIAA, IFPI

One of the Big Four labels is apparently unhappy with its return on investment when it comes to funding industry trade groups such as the IFPI and RIAA. British label EMI, which was recently purchased by a private equity fund, is reportedly considering a significant cut to the amount of money it provides the trade groups on an annual basis.

According to figures seen by Reuters, each of the Big Four contributes approximately $132.3 million to fund the operations of the IFPI, RIAA, and other national recording industry trade groups. That money is used in part to fund the industry’s antipiracy efforts—including the close to 30,000 file-sharing lawsuits filed by the record labels in the US alone.

I’m not as unsympathetic as many are when it comes to efforts on the part of the record labels to prevent wholesale piracy, but even if one grants the validity of their cause (a concession I don’t make) the RIAA has been wildly unsuccessful. The RIAA’s interests have been diverging from the labels’ interests themselves for some time now and I think it’s wise for labels to start looking at other options.

Category: Newsroom

About the Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

If you are interested in subscribing to new post notifications,
please enter your email address on this page.