Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 16th Apr 2011 16:01 UTC
Google So, Google has been working on setting up an internet music service for a while now, and we even know some of the details about what Google wants it to look like. Sadly, however, rumour has it the negotiations with the music industry have been so frustrating, Google is contemplating abandoning the entire project altogether. This has led some to wonder - why doesn't Google, or a consortium of technology companies, just buy the music industry outright?
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Member since:

Eugenia is spot on. The big labels are dinosaurs that are on their way out. Just wait awhile longer and watch them choke to death on their own greed.

The concern is how much damage they can do over the next decade while they die.

For being a "small", "dying" industry, they wield incredible lobbying power allowing them to shape laws to prop up their failed business model at the expense of consumers and technological progress.

Buying the labels out isn't about saving them, it's about taking away their power to hurt technology companies like Google.

Reply Parent Score: 7

Eugenia Member since:

This is a real danger, but I still don't think that any company should spend every last one penny to buy them. In fact, as some others mentioned here, no company would be able to afford them. The "big 4" labels cost probably over $40bn, which is more than what any one single company can afford.

The right approach is simply to fight them in their lobbying game (way cheaper), while at the same time wait for their impending death. Unlimited streaming through subscription (ala netflix), indie labels, and amateur individual artists will take over.

The only thing we really missing is an easy licensing way for these indie artists, the way jamendo does it for Creative Commons music.

Edited 2011-04-16 21:18 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

Thom_Holwerda Member since:

Market caps/revenues of the big four, from large to smallest:

Sony Music Entertainment: part of Sony. Revenue: $1.33bn.
EMI: MC: £2.38bn. Revenue: £1.07bn
WMG: MC: $1.11bn. Revenue: $3.5bn
UMG: part of Vivendi. Delisted in 2006. Revenue: $6.1 bn.

Yeah, so, no. Certainly not 40 billion. All this is pocket change for companies like Google (revenue: $30 bn) and Apple (revenue: $65bn).

Reply Parent Score: 1