Report: Google’s Had It Up to *Here* w/Music Labels

| Product News

Google is apparently just about fed up with the major music labels in its negotiations to put together a music service to compete with Apple’s iTunes Store. AllThingsD reported that a source “familiar with [Google’s] thinking” said that the negotiations are “broken,” with another source saying Google’s music plans have recently “gone backwards.”

Google has wanted to launch an online music store that would offer Android users the same kind of access to music enjoyed by Apple’s iTunes customers. The company has wanted to pair such a store to an online music locker that would allow its customers to access their music libraries anywhere and everywhere (they have a connection to the Interwebs).

AllThingsD’s Peter Kafka also noted that the music label sources have told him that things were going swimmingly, and that they thought they were close to a deal with Google. Some of those source also claimed, however, that Google has been changing some of the terms it wanted, and this had proved a sticking point.

Amazon’s recent move to launch an online digital locker without seeking permission from those same labels to do so may have also thrown a wrinkle into Google’s talks. Being frustrated with the labels on licensing music for an online store, the search giant could opt to go the locker route without offering music for sale.

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17 Comments Leave Your Own

Jamie

Poor Google babies, having to play like everybody else. So tired of reading about their hissy-fits, too. This is not a company with vision, folks.

It isn’t exactly a secret that the music industry has been corrupt since its inception. Probably a miracle Apple and Amazon et. al. have negotiated what they’ve managed, and once again, for the record (ha, ha!) people that actually pay for and are enthusiastic about music likely won’t care about a streaming service or cloud storage (I’m one of them).

matt

You can still buy music?

Aapl

Poor Google babies, having to play like everybody else. So tired of reading about their hissy-fits, too. This is not a company with vision, folks. It isn?t exactly a secret that the music industry has been corrupt since its inception. Probably a miracle Apple and Amazon et. al. have negotiated what they?ve managed, and once again, for the record (ha, ha!) people that actually pay for and are enthusiastic about music likely won?t care about a streaming service or cloud storage (I?m one of them).

Look, I’m not the biggest Google fan in the world, but even I can realize that they are indeed a company with a vision. Sure, maybe that vision is being stomped on by the childishly stubborn record labels with their fingers shoved in their ears, but combining an itunes-like service with a streaming service like Grooveshark is a concept that many audiophiles like myself would jump all over.

Table

Google doesn’t seem to throw ‘hissy-fits’ over just anything.  Look at their relationship with China.  When you think about their market share, the only place they can go is down and still knowing this they’re not willing to compromise their belief of “do no evil” even to offer a service which i’m almost positive is generating apple a tidy chunk of change. And it’s no miracle apple and amazon got into bed with the labels they’re far more concerned about $$$.

NOW if google was smart they’d use they’re dollars and influence to start they’re own label and start poaching artists like they acquire other talent, shutdown the labels and get the artists fair deals and less exploited.

Nemo

I wonder why Google doesn’t follow its usual modus operandi and simply infringe on the labels’ copyrights in their property.  I suppose that Google’s management is moved to be somewhat more conservative by the legion of IP lawsuits facing Android and the other legion of privacy lawsuit that Google is facing here and internationally for its prying ways, and then there are the growing antitrust lawsuits, which I would only describe as a Company but a growing Company that could soon be at battalion strength.  Even the open-source community, which in its most extreme is my favorite group of neo-communist, is starting to feel Google’s sting, as Android runs roughshod over the GPL.  With so many lawsuits across such a broad range of its activities, Google probably felt constrained to negotiate rather than simply expropriate.

But the record labels should look out, for Google seems to follow the dictum that it is easier to ask for forgiveness than it is to ask for permission, which is a course that I think it will pursue until some judges deliver such stern correction to it that a chastened Google will decide that the law exists for it as well as everyone else and conforms its behavior to the law.

And yes you can buy music, for now.  And as long as you can buy music, music you shall have.  But has the revenues for music decline, the quantity and quality of music has declined with it, so that once you can’t buy music any longer, you will have an opportunity to learn to play something and make your own music, because that and the odd passing minstrel will be all the music that you’ll get.  And if you get really good on your instrument or as signer or composer, you will likely have that unique pleasure of providing your talent and art for free, as others enjoy it and perhaps even resell or otherwise exchange it for something of value.

Nemo
Nemo
mhikl

Nemo, are you on a diet or into Zen or have you been censored? Them last two postings are slim pickings.

It must be pretty difficult to figure out this complex world of who owns what. The producers of music and print are the artists; the distributors are not the producers. They are all middlemen between the artist(s) of a product and the consumer. What is happening is much like the revolution in desktop publishing. It’s the sales side that has its shorts in the proverbial knot over ephemeral control. Music and print are becoming less reliant upon corporate distribution. We are just waiting for the great applications that will make it possible for joe and jane to crank out their products as happened with DT Publishing.

Storage and the ease of retrievability is also a major problem. The cloud sounds promising but seems flakey. I’m in the midst of cleaning up my iTunes collection which has become too vast in size with its assortment of audio, audio-video and now print files that verges on the size of a small town library. So that has become my model. I don’t have to have all my music ready at the moment. It can be stored as one used to store albums and books on shelves in their home or public library. Then they can be moved to the computer or the iThing of choice.

I expect Apple or Google or some other enterprise will figure out a means to freedom from all the clutter. It will be an eureka moment for someone and a relief for me, but in the meantime, I’m letting go of immediacy.

Nemo

Dear mhikl:  Under the laws of the United States a person who has a properly drafted and duly filed copyright on a an expression, be it music, video, computer code, or any other copyrightable work, is presumed to own that work to the extent of the rights set forth in section 17 U.S.C. ?? 106 and 106A of the Copyright Act.  The U.S. Supreme Court long ago held that rights under patent, copyright, and marks (trademarks, service marks, etc.) are constitutionally protected property rights.  There is no dispute about such property rights and the ownership that flows from them; it is as well settled a question of law as may be found.  So your personal views about ownership have no validity in the law.  And distributors who have a copyright and/or the appropriate licenses in the works that they distribute are presumed to own them, unless that presumption is rebutted by sufficient evidence to show some defect in their respective copyrights.

The federal district courts have reminded Google of this twice in stinging rebukes:  First, with its permitting infringing content on YouTube and most recently when the federal court in, I believe, New York reject Google’s view that it could simply copy copyrighted books without the copyright holder’s permission, because it was providing a public service.  (The court also found that Google’s public service set up a monopoly for Google in that “public service.”)  If Google comes before a federal judge once again for copyright infringement, that judge may have to regard Google as a serial infringer and not only enhance its civil damages and the scope and severity of its injunction but also refer the matter to the DOJ to determine whether Google should be charged under the criminal, felony provisions of the Copyright Act.

Lee Dronick

Nemo, are you on a diet or into Zen or have you been censored? Them last two postings are slim pickings.

As Slim Pickens said in Blazing Saddles “What in the wide, wide, world of sports is going on?”

Anyway, I am not sure that I am liking this new comment system. It is a pain in the butt to quote someone when I am using my iPad because clicking on the gear wheel action button can deselect the text you want to quote. When I get an email notification if I click on the embedded link I get taken to a comment box, but not the entire article.

Nemo

Yep, the new comments system has a few bugs.  When I posted comments, there was nothing to indicate to me that they had been posted, so that caused me to post duplicate comments, which I did my best to delete.

Lee Dronick

When I posted comments, there was nothing to indicate to me that they had been posted, so that caused me to post duplicate comments, which I did my best to delete.

Looks like there is a javascript or something that brings up a message to “Click here to see your comment” or words to that effect.

Does clicking on the link in an email notification take directly to a comment box that does not display the story page?

mhikl

a person who has a . . . duly filed copyright on an expression . . . is presumed to own that work

I agree, fully, with all your points. What has gone on in the past is set in stone so copyright holders are and should be protected. What I see, though, is a changing world where the artist will or can choose to be the only copyright holder of his or her property. I believe this is a good thing and I believe the copyright laws work to his favour. The artist can publish as he chooses and choose his (or her) method of distribution with freedom and expectation of some renumeration.

Protecting the enterprise from the schemings of Google, a modern day Medusa, is a good thing and in the long run will also protect the entrepreneurial artist who otherwise would be set upon by highwaymen like Google. I, too, want Google’s pants down, its behind whipped, tarred and feathered and its head on a post at the gates across the land.

Sorry. I wasn’t so clear in my previous post.

Now, if you or other TMO members would suggest solutions to the quest for my storage and the ease of retrievability issues, I will be down on my knees and buttocks sending prayers and blessings your aways.

You are quite the erudite. Rare to see in this age.

mhikl

the gear wheel action button can deselect the text you want to quote

Agreed Sir Henry. I learned a long time ago to select and paste to my desktop prior to any action that may put curses to my babble. In the past one could add a link after composing but, alas, ‘tis no more.

Another bone of contention I have with relatively recent changes is the giant icons or pictures TMO uses. They are distracting and page consuming. But the will of progress marches on and I but an observer sit in fluster.

Nemo

Dear mhikl:  Right now, all authors of a copyrightable work have at least a common law copyright in that work the instant that it is reduced to a tangible medium.  And such authors, unless they are subject to some work-for-hire or assignment provision, are the only one who can apply for and who initially own the federal copyright in their respective works.  Those copyrights pass from authors to other copyright holders, such as movie studios, record labels, etc., through negotiation and sale or licensing.  So it is the author who trades his copyright for something of value.  Right now authors, who duly file for their federal copyrights, are free to do what they want with their copyrighted work to the extent permitted by their ?? 106 and 106A rights. 

Now, it is true that big companies are often more sophisticated than authors and take advantage of authors.  But the law has no ready answer for that other than become more sophisticated and hire a good lawyer.  A good lawyer can do much and often all that is necessary to protect an author’s interests in his copyright and obtain fair value for the author’s copyright.

And that leads us to your other point about Apple, Google, or others being able to get rights to set up cloud-based media services.  Well, since the labels, studios, and other media companies hold property rights, those wishing to get rights for cloud-based services have to negotiate with them, just as they would have to negotiate with an authored who had retained all the rights of his copyright.  So the question comes down to whether Apple and others can negotiate a deal that all parties can agree to.  If so, Apple or someone can negotiate such a deal, we will have cloud-based services; if no one can negotiate such a deal, we won’t.

And you are a little harsh on Google:  Spanked, whipped, tarred and feathered, and put into the stocks.  I think that we can do with Google obeying the law and being appropriately punished and compelled to obey when it does not obey the law.

mhikl

I think that we can do with Google obeying the law . . . and compelled to . . .  obey the law.

We agree on a lot, Nemo. But until this happens, let the spankings continue (at least the verbal ones on TMO).

Dorje Sylas

NOW if google was smart they?d use they?re dollars and influence to start they?re own label and start poaching artists like they acquire other talent, shutdown the labels and get the artists fair deals and less exploited.

Not only that by offering good terms to those up coming YouTube artist. I’m sure they could create an algorithm to scout talent among the masses. After all there have been some notable “talents” located through YouTube. I put talent in quotes so can apply your own standard of quality.

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