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YouTube, Grooveshark Distort Digital Rules And Indie Music Suffers, Says Beggars Martin Mills

image from justusgeeks.comIn one speech during last week's Canadian Music Week, Beggars Music Group Chairman Martin Mills took on the Digital Music Copyright Act (DMCA), blasted the world's largest music company, lambasted the globes biggest online company and singled out Grooveshark.

Failure Of The DMCA

image from www.impalamusic.orgThe DMCA and its safe harbor provisions were introduced, "with some foresight," said Mills, " provide a notice and take down procedure for unlicensed content. But the legislation has been distorted into a protective wall behind which cyberlockers and torrent sites, and companies such as YouTube and Grooveshark, operate." 

"To draw an offline analogy," he continued, "these provisions would allow someone to burgle your house and remove its contents, with their only risk being that if you caught them, they’d have to return them – and maybe apologise. And then do it again. And again. And again."

Indie Music Suffers The Most

"As you might imagine, policing the YouTubes of this world for infringing content is a herculean task, one beyond all but the largest of companies." continued Mills. "For my community, the independents, it’s a game of whack-a-mole they can only lose." 

To read more of this portion of Mills speach visit Music Technology Policy.

Harsh Words For Universal

Mill also has harsh words for the world's largest music group, Universal. 

"We operate in an industry today that is out of balance. And we need a balanced industry like we need a balanced diet," Mills said. "The first respect in which it's out of balance is in the size and dominance of the major players. Nobody in this industry, other than those trying to compete with them, can now afford not to have a relationship with Universal, and that gives them unprecedented power - power to upset the balance. The power, as their CEO proudly said, to get people into business, the power to stop people getting into business."

"When they negotiate or renegotiate with digital services, they leverage that power to obtain a larger slice of the pie than should be theirs," he continued. "And that effect echoes down the food chain, and leaves independents, those companies who have always started new trends, on who the musical culture of our nations depends, finding that Universal have eaten their lunch. "

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