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coops
2006-03-03, 18:15
I was turned onto this site several months ago and am quite impressed with the selection and being able to encode the music to suit my needs/taste. The music costs per meg, and the average cd is $2.00
There is of course some question as to he legality of this. It is legal in Russia, but would not be legal here. Of course the internet makes this tricky, I guess, buying a song that is legal in one counrty and electronically transferring it to another. I have done a fair bit of reading and the consensus seems to be, to my none legal mind, that no-one really knows. But everyone has an opinion.
I used to buy cd's used from Ebay and in many respects this is very similar. In both cases the royalty has already been paid. None of the cost of the used cd from Ebay goes to the artist, and I doubt much of the cost of the download from Russia does either.
Anyway, just thought I would mention the site in case anyone is interested in checking it out.
Cheers

mattybain
2006-03-04, 00:27
There has been numerous lengthy discussion about this site already, the longest was http://forums.slimdevices.com/showthread.php?t=18642&highlight=allofmp3

fairyliquidizer
2006-03-09, 03:33
Even if this service is legal (and if what it claims is true it is).... I'm not sure it's moral for people in affluent western countries to pay so little that the artists will get little or no payment.

This is my personal view and not a judgement of others. Just an explanation of how I looked and the service and it made me feel uncomfortable.

Khuli
2006-03-09, 07:09
I use it mainly to get an mp3 copy of the old stuff I already have on vinyl.. 400+ albums would take way too long to convert.

It's also great for being able to listen to albums before deciding to buy (or not) the CD.

avaloncourt
2006-03-12, 09:51
Even if this service is legal (and if what it claims is true it is).... I'm not sure it's moral for people in affluent western countries to pay so little that the artists will get little or no payment.

There have been a number of very prominent artists who have outright said across the last couple years that they get nothing from legitimate sales anyhow. One of the more vocal people on this subject is Roger McGuinn who wrote most of The Birds songs. Unless the artist is the producer themselves they don't get a cent in royalties. Everything goes to the record company. Outside of the original payment for recording the album, they get all of their money from concert and merchandise sales.

A small artist would get the original signing amount and then nothing after that.

street_samurai
2006-03-13, 12:23
I'm not sure it's moral for people in affluent western countries to pay so little that the artists will get little or no payment.

Not to sidetrack this thread but...

IMO, this has nothing to do with 'the people' it has to do with the recording industry. The moral problem here is not in the listeners hands (how can listening to music be immoral?), its in the hands of the executives at these Big Media companies. -Many- artists loose money when releasing pressed CD albums through Big Media.

If you like an album on allofmp3 then send the artist a cheque or go to their concert... they'll make a lot more money than if you download the track off of iTunes (or even buy it in the store).

ss.

ceejay
2006-06-06, 09:22
At the risk of re-opening an old debate, here is a recent comment on allofmp3...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/5051826.stm

Ceejay

radish
2006-06-06, 10:23
There have been a number of very prominent artists who have outright said across the last couple years that they get nothing from legitimate sales anyhow. One of the more vocal people on this subject is Roger McGuinn who wrote most of The Birds songs. Unless the artist is the producer themselves they don't get a cent in royalties. Everything goes to the record company. Outside of the original payment for recording the album, they get all of their money from concert and merchandise sales.
Then he signed a really bad contract, and that's no-one's fault but his own. Standard recording contracts award points to the artists, the writers, the producers and various other people. If you're artist, writer & producer all in one (as several people I know are) you can do pretty well. But I don't see Britney doing badly financially, and she's neither writer nor producer for most of her songs. No one forces you to sign a deal, if you don't like the terms renegotiate or move on.

As for allofmp3, if you're going to get music without compensating the artist that's your choice, and in my mind it's a moral one - they do the work so they're entitled to get paid. But even if you don't want to pay them why give money to some shady russian mob? Just get it for free from p2p. Personally, I buy lots of CDs & vinyl because I value the music and I've already seen too many fantastic small labels go bust.

snarlydwarf
2006-06-06, 10:45
Then he signed a really bad contract, and that's no-one's fault but his own. Standard recording contracts award points to the artists, the writers, the producers and various other people. If you're artist, writer & producer all in one (as several people I know are) you can do pretty well. But I don't see Britney doing badly financially, and she's neither writer nor producer for most of her songs. No one forces you to sign a deal, if you don't like the terms renegotiate or move on.

Britney makes most of her money from concerts, just like most other major-label artists.

Radio airplay doesn't pay artists at all: it only pays the publisher and the composer.

See http://journal.davidbyrne.com/2005/12/12105_rant_abou.html for another artist's viewpoint.

Or this quote from another of his pages:


The other problem with the payola system is that it bankrupts the artist. Not always, but very often, these costs — hundreds of thousands of dollars — are recoupable against the artist’s share of the record royalties. If the song clicks and the record sells millions, then no one complains, as money eventually trickles into the artist’s account. But if other things happen — if the song gets plenty of play maybe everyone really likes it too, but no one buys the CD — then the artist will be unlikely to recoup those costs. So maybe the record company tries a second single, with more indie promotion expenses, which indeed may be the one… or it may simply put the poor artist even further in the hole.

And, um, yeah, I spend too much time reading his site. :P

autopilot
2006-06-06, 11:08
AllofMP3 are currently under another legal attack. The last few have failed, but this one seems more rubust this time (the others were more of a 'knee-jerk' type reaction from the US/UK record industries). They seem to have got the Russian government on side more this time.

I honestly dont think they will be around much longer, legal or not. If you plan to use them, spend your credit quickly.

radish
2006-06-06, 14:01
Radio airplay doesn't pay artists at all: it only pays the publisher and the composer.
That depends entirely on your contract.


The other problem with the payola system is that it bankrupts the artist. Not always, but very often, these costs — hundreds of thousands of dollars — are recoupable against the artist’s share of the record royalties. If the song clicks and the record sells millions, then no one complains, as money eventually trickles into the artist’s account. But if other things happen — if the song gets plenty of play maybe everyone really likes it too, but no one buys the CD — then the artist will be unlikely to recoup those costs. So maybe the record company tries a second single, with more indie promotion expenses, which indeed may be the one… or it may simply put the poor artist even further in the hole.

Sure, that's how it usually works. But again, this is just someone complaining in retrospect about a deal they signed in the past. Why am I supposed to sympathize? When you get a job you agree to terms and salary - how is this any different? These artists all dream of being the next big thing - to put it bluntly they're greedy. So they sign the first thing EMI put under their nose without reading it properly and they get screwed.

One thing I really can't stand is artists (generally pretty successful ones) complaining they don't get enough of the pie. In most cases they wouldn't have a penny if it wasn't for the financing and marketing provided by the label at the start of their careers. Remember it's also in the label's interests for an artist to succeed - they make a lot more money from a Madonna than from a Right Said Fred.

But this is all way off topic :) My main point is that don't kid yourself that using allofmp3 is any more "OK" than using Kazaa. It may or may not be legal based on whose interpretation of Russian law you believe, but it sure as hell doesn't compensate anyone other than the people who run it. They are getting very rich from it and I don't personally believe they deserve to.

Pale Blue Ego
2006-06-06, 19:37
Problem is, the big labels are the only game in town if an artist wants to go mainstream. Do you think if the starving artist turns down the initial contract offer, they'll be offered a sweetheart contract later?

IMO, these artist contracts are just short of criminal. I noted that in the original Napster trial, when Napster's lawyers subpoenaed the actual artist contracts, the labels quickly moved to settle out of court. Either the terms of those contracts were so embarassing they did not want them to become public, or they were afraid that contracts drawn up decades before the Internet would be judged to contain no rights for control of that type of distribution.

Some artists are doing very well developing creative business models. Jane Siberry has a system where you can download her music and then decide how much you'd like to pay, or pay nothing. Only 17% downloaded and paid nothing. Of the people who paid, 79% paid the suggested 99-cent price, 8% paid less than that, and 14% paid MORE than the suggested price. Average price paid was $1.14

Her music store basically runs itself while she concentrates on touring.

Brian Ritchie
2006-06-06, 20:01
At the risk of re-opening an old debate, here is a recent comment on allofmp3...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/5051826.stm

Old debate indeed - this is exactly the same stuff that the IFPI, BPI, RIAA, etc. etc. were spouting out before their case was thrown out of court in Russia. The argument hasn't changed, nor has it yet been legally proven, it's just that now they might have found more sympathetic ears suitably high up in the Russian government, who might find some way to shut allofmp3 down. (My wife asks, why don't Sony or EMI just buy allofmp3 out?!)

There is one gem in the BBC article:



"Because it is a professionally put together site it does look legitimate, although it should be obvious from the price that it isn't," [BPI spokesman] Mr Phillips said.
(My emphasis.) I rest my case. :-)

It's all just the sound of a fat-but-dying middle-men industry failing to cope with inevitable change, and trying (and hopefully failing miserably) to get away with the same ripoff on downloads and DRM that they managed to get away with when CDs first appeared (prices up, royalties down, IIRC).

If they really want to reduce illegal downloads, they could start by trying to beat allofmp3 at their own game; for example, offering a range of formats and qualities, the ability to listen to entire tracks at low quality for free, and charging considerably (rather than slightly) less than the price of an equivalent CD. Oh, and of course, allowing customers (dare I say "owners"?) to listen to the music that they have paid for on any device of their choice. They could make more of their back catalogue available, at bargain prices (I recall reading that Capitol were planning to do this, but have heard nothing more since.) But no, they'd rather drown in their own petulant drool and drive their customers away in droves.

(As before, I'm aware that I'm over-generalising. For example, Warp go a long way to being sensible, though I'd still say there's not enough differential between the online and CD price.)

If allofmp3 were shut down, I would definitely not buy more legal music than I do now; I would almost certainly buy less, and it wouldn't be out of protest, but through loss of utility. For the most part, I'm through with buying music unheard, or on the basis of the praise of dubious strangers whose tastes probably differ from mine anyway. I'm through with paying insane amounts of money to acquire albums on import because no BPI member can be bothered to sell them in my country. I'm largely through with paying yet again for an album I already own, because it's been repackaged or remastered or has one or two extra tracks that are not available separately. And sure as hell I am not going to pay for something that I won't be able to listen to on my next portable, or my next hard drive.

OK, that's old hoary stuff itself - see the earlier thread for better presentations of it. But the more I hear the recording industry whine, the less I give a damn about being even vaguely sympathetic (especially when they try to engage my sympathy for the "poor suffering artists" who are either rich beyond my wildest dreams or already poor and suffering thanks to the stingy contracts foisted on all but the ludicrously successful); and it doesn't help when I keep hearing "copyright infringement" mistermed as "stealing" or "theft" (when talking about the UK) by industry spokespeople who're supposedly well-versed in the law but are plainly more interested in wool-pulling rhetoric and scaremongering.

-- Brian

mattybain
2006-06-07, 03:59
Brian - what a well written post, I agree with your sentiments exactly. It is the loss of utility that I object to most followed by the rip off prices of downloaded music.

When are these record fat cats going to learn.

blah509
2006-06-07, 17:02
I believe the best thing for allofmp3.com to do is to give more (if any) to the artists. They would have a very powerful ally if they did that.

g

Brian Ritchie
2006-06-07, 18:12
The BBC's Have Your Say page on the topic of illegal downloads, at:

http://newsforums.bbc.co.uk/nol/thread.jspa?threadID=2081&&&edition=1&ttl=20060608013346

has generated a huge response, with some excellent points made, though you might have to dig for them. (Incidentally, despite there being a post from Oxford making similar points to mine here, it wasn't me!)

And allofmp3.com has responded to the RIAA/BPI/IFPI statements; for example see:

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/06/07/bpi_sues_allofmp3/

-- Brian

tom permutt
2006-06-07, 19:37
Brian - what a well written post, I agree with your sentiments exactly. It is the loss of utility that I object to most followed by the rip off prices of downloaded music.

When are these record fat cats going to learn.I also agree with much of what Brian says, and I understand "loss of utility," but I don't get "rip off prices." What exactly is your model of a fair price for a download or a CD? Do you, or do artists you like, produce and sell music for less? Or do you actually prefer the high priced spread? If you like it and you can't find substitutes at a better price, what's your theory of why they should sell it to you for less, other than that they are fat?

klausbgva
2006-06-08, 11:15
Allof MP3 or alltunes is what we consumers want. Get the music in the quality we want and pay less for low quality formats.

Back in the 80's we did the same thing
High Quality CD
Medium LP or MC
Low quality record from Radion station.

The music industry has changed. P2P is still much worse than any attempt to offer consumers what they want but without DRM and large lists of restrictions. (If you own 3 slimboxes buy the song 3 times ...)
Or pay 2$ for a very low quality 30 seconds ring-tone for your cell phone.

As far as Pricing is concerned I see no real difference between CD's bought in stores and allofmp3. A FLAC album will go for 7-10 USD and that what you pay for the CD when on sale in stores.

I did actually buy Mark Knopfler on CD rather than from allofmp3 it was cheaper (0.20 cents)

Give all the cost to produce and distribute the CD I am not sure that online distribution without to many restrictions could not be viable.

ezkcdude
2006-06-08, 14:16
For the most part, I'm through with buying music unheard


Last I looked, you could hear samples of most songs on Amazon, and when you go to Borders or B&N, you can hear most of the CD's as well. Look, you can justify downloading illegal copies if you want. Nobody is going to hunt you down and take back those files. If you feel good about yourself, that's great. I've done it in the past, and found the quality of most of the files I was downloading was dubious. Frankly, I think those sites simply transcode lower bitrate files that they stole themselves and then pass them off as higher bitrates. I've downloaded a lot of crap that way. Anyway, that's neither here nor there. In the end, the illegal sites will be shutdown. No doubt about it. You can either come to grip with it now or cry like a baby later when you will pony up the money for legal downloads or CD's.

Brian Ritchie
2006-06-10, 09:59
Last I looked, you could hear samples of most songs on Amazon, and when you go to Borders or B&N, you can hear most of the CD's as well.
In my teens, I would spend hours listening to entire albums in the record shop before deciding on them. I know of almost nowhere that would let me do this now (and it's not because they're short of custom - quite the opposite!) I usually find that the 30-second sample that tends to be the norm at Amazon or Borders is *not* enough to judge anything by, especially when it's the first 30 seconds of a piece that starts with wind noises!

At the moment, allofmp3.com limits free samples to 90 seconds (still not long enough), and only allows unlimited-length samples to those who've spent more than a certain amount ($50?), so this isn't quite perfect either. (Since the samples are 24kbps mono, they're hardly tempting alternatives, but do give an idea of the contents.)


Look, you can justify downloading illegal copies if you want. Nobody is going to hunt you down and take back those files. If you feel good about yourself, that's great. I've done it in the past, and found the quality of most of the files I was downloading was dubious. Frankly, I think those sites simply transcode lower bitrate files that they stole themselves and then pass them off as higher bitrates. I've downloaded a lot of crap that way.
I've had some disappointments from allofmp3.com - mainly things that have never been available on CD, and (surprise, surprise) sound like poor transfers from vinyl; but for the most part, the quality's been pretty good. (I've never tried downloading flac from them.)


Anyway, that's neither here nor there. In the end, the illegal sites will be shutdown. No doubt about it. You can either come to grip with it now or cry like a baby later when you will pony up the money for legal downloads or CD's.
I wouldn't cry like a baby. I'd just cut down on how much I buy. It's not that I can't afford it (though storage space *is* a problem :-)), it's that I'm no longer prepared to buy things without a chance to hear them properly first. As I've said before, I've tended to use allofmp3.com as a try-before-you-buy stopover. (Though also for things I'm having trouble finding any other way.) If I find I enjoy something, I will buy it on CD, and then I can rip it into flac. (How long do I allow myself for this? Simple: as long as I want.)

In any case, though I agree that allofmp3.com will probably be shut down, plenty more will spring up to take its place. No way is this genie going back into its bottle!

-- Brian

ezkcdude
2006-06-10, 11:59
Brian, I've found that listening to internet radio is a great way to hear new artists or songs. Practically everything I've bought in the past few years has been something I've heard on radioparadise or radioio. And, for now, it's free! I know it's not the same as listening to an entire album, but it's better than nothing.

deserttaxguy
2006-07-15, 18:36
All the songs in the uninverse for free or what ever will never get me to give my credit card number to some Russian music scalpers!
How do you pay for your purchases? I wouldnt give them access to any numbers of mine.

Brian Ritchie
2006-07-18, 18:37
All the songs in the uninverse for free or what ever will never get me to give my credit card number to some Russian music scalpers!
How do you pay for your purchases? I wouldnt give them access to any numbers of mine.
Well don't then; but your fears are completely unsubstantiated. (Rather, if you worry about allofmp3.com, then you should worry about almost any transaction over the internet.)

I've heard this same FUD expressed umpteen times (and I'm sure it's another good industry scare-tactic), but I've never heard of anyone actually having anything untoward happen.

On the other hand, I *have* had problems with legitimate (and UK-based) CD vendors who charged my credit card before they'd dispatched the CDs, and then never dispatched them (I suspect because they couldn't actually source them); but even then I've always managed to get a refund.

-- Brian

Brian Ritchie
2006-07-18, 18:46
Brian, I've found that listening to internet radio is a great way to hear new artists or songs. Practically everything I've bought in the past few years has been something I've heard on radioparadise or radioio. And, for now, it's free! I know it's not the same as listening to an entire album, but it's better than nothing.
A very belated reply!

I agree that radio can be a great way to find new music; but it's just something I got out of the habit of doing when my tastes diverged wildly from all that was on offer here in the UK. I got fed up with listening to rubbish 99.99% of the time just to hear those tiny nuggets of genius. Sure, internet radio opens up the choices hugely, but I've not really got round to investigating further.

-- Brian

mattybain
2006-07-19, 05:27
A very belated reply!

I agree that radio can be a great way to find new music; but it's just something I got out of the habit of doing when my tastes diverged wildly from all that was on offer here in the UK. I got fed up with listening to rubbish 99.99% of the time just to hear those tiny nuggets of genius. Sure, internet radio opens up the choices hugely, but I've not really got round to investigating further.

-- Brian

Getting a little of topic here but I would really recommend LastFM radio, I have lost count of the number of new artists that I have been introduced to over the past 6 months.

What I particuarly like is the dropping in of new artists you are likely to enjoy amongst your current favourites. It seems to get better the more you submit as it "learns" your tastes.

mattybain
2006-07-19, 05:30
I also agree with much of what Brian says, and I understand "loss of utility," but I don't get "rip off prices." What exactly is your model of a fair price for a download or a CD? Do you, or do artists you like, produce and sell music for less? Or do you actually prefer the high priced spread? If you like it and you can't find substitutes at a better price, what's your theory of why they should sell it to you for less, other than that they are fat?

Forgive the late reply but what I object to is paying £7.99 for an i-tunes download, crippled by DRM at 128kbps when I can buy the CD for the same amount or sometimes less (but then can't rip it).

rick's cafe
2006-07-28, 05:20
for those of you interested in lossless downloads.... I came acros an interesting site sometime ago offering complete downloads of all master tracks in a recording .. very limited selection at the momwent .. however I think the idea is quite unique when you come to think of it .. especially for those of you that like to mix music

http://www.imultitracks.com/

velichk
2007-08-06, 07:36
There are many internationally based web sites like Allofmp3 which offers music download service, and are continually coming under pressure from other countries to shut down. i know more 19 store or service that provides the best digital music experience at lens http://www.squidoo.com/review_russianmp3site .