20 January 2007

Indies not so Independent

When I saw this:

The world's biggest record label, albeit a "virtual" one, emerged today at the Midemnet conference in Cannes.

Indies have found themselves treated as second class citizens or ignored altogether in the era of digital music. The new organization Merlin will act as a global rights licensing agency, and represents the growing influence of the independent sector acting collectively.

My heart leapt. Could it be, I said to myself, that we might see some independent thinking in the music biz at last - you, know, no DRM, sensible pricing, that kind of stuff?


Alison Wenham of the UK-based Association for Independent Music (AIM) confirmed that indies would demand the removal of content from sites such as YouTube if they didn't cut Merlin a similar deal to the one negotiated by Universal Music, the world's biggest label.

Clearly, this Merlin the wizard ain't so wise: YouTube = free publicity = more sales.

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