Debating Digital Music Dollars: How Much and Where It Goes

Managers of a wide variety of acts recently got together to publish a document called Dissecting the Digital Dollar. And surprise! They call for greater transparency when it comes to collecting and distributing the money. This is from Musically:

The report was announced earlier this month but published this morning, with a press conference in London featuring manager Brian Message, the MMF’s Jon Webster and the report’s author, CMU’s Chris Cooke.

Based on qualitative research with 50 managers and 30 digital-music experts in five countries, the report digs in to managers’ views on issues from digital royalties to safe harbour legislation, but transparency was the key word judging by the launch.

“We got totally fed up in not understanding quite how the recorded music business has arrived in the situation that every day, the way income was calculated and predicated on what laws was just becoming more and more complicated,” said Webster. “Any manager in his day-to-day job would find it almost impossible to understand what was going on.”

The report was due to be published in June. “But every time we nearly got it finished, something changed again. And that’s the issue: it keeps changing all the time,” said Webster.

Cooke introduced the 72-page report, its key findings, and the motivation behind publishing it. “There isn’t a manifesto at the end of this report… We’re not setting out saying ‘this is how it should be’. This is to kickstart a debate, because lots of people in the music community are discussing this,” he said.

Continue reading.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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