Hi. I used to use this blog a lot more than i do now. I don't agree with much of what i've posted here, but such is the nature of time. :) My instagram & facebook are likely to be more up to date.

sound karma dot com?

>> Thursday, January 15, 2009

"more than 10 million of the 13 million music tracks
available on the internet failed to find a single buyer last year.
(On the other hand, for every paid for song there where 20 pirated.)"

via (update: also, is this wrong?)

there is a really good idea at the bottom of this post, but first, some backstory:

i pay for music very infrequently... in the last two years, the music i bought we're some records in berlin, some thrift store 45s, some yard sale 45s, l.v. & dandelion's "cctv/dream cargo" & dj ruptures "uproot" mix... that's it. i've been broke, cheap, and flooded by the ocean of sounds.

i steal/i'm given/whatever on average 8 albums a day... easily. the other day i downloaded over 100 archives marked [dbstp] off emule... it's truly post scarcity. i toss most of it, but keep the singles i like and occaisonally the whole release. on the one hand it's great. i love the try-before-you buy possibility, but on the other hand, who ends up buying even when they like it?

that being said, i had a lovely experience recently where i contacted barry lynn (boxcutter) on his myspace page, told him i really loved his music, but had stolen it and wanted to give him some money. he complained that his labels barely pay him (except for planet µ), and happily gave me his paypal account and i sent him $30... which is way more than he would have gotten had i spent that $30 at a record shop, or even at an mp3 site...

*really good idea*

"sound karma dot com"

decentralized patronage in action. make a website that is simply a vehicle to pay artists (and labels) whatever you want. you could give $20 to benga, $1 to lil wayne, $5 to the heirs of miles davis and $6 to dutty artz... etc... no product sold, no frills, just a way to give back to the artists... so now, the challenges...

1. verifying the artist's identity could be tough. someone could pose as richard d. james to snag the money sent by fans of richard d. james... my solution to this is to have it built on artist referalls. i have boxcutter's paypal, he could verify label-mates' paypal, etc...

2. severs/bandwidth cost money. you could take a small cut or sell some ad space so this isn't a big problem, but commercialization could taint the spirit of this endeavor. you could also sell mp3s, etc, but that could invite more problems than it solves....

3. labels might be pissed. i appreciate the role of (especially small) labels as taste arbiters and talent scouts, but even if we don't act to appease the labels, we wouldn't be selling any of their product, just giving venture capital to their employees...

4. legal issues might arise. i'm not that concerned with this because i feel like if it's done in a spirit of service to the musicians no one will really be able to complain, it's not against the law to give people money, and it may just help a lot...

i have people who can build this, and i may, but i invite your wise criticism and input first.


also, any repping/spreading of this idea would be greatly appreciated. i think that the sooner something like this is implemented the better. i guess i'd like credit, but i'd rather have "a centralized site where users can reward their favorite musicians."


rupture January 15, 2009 at 10:59 PM  

analog solution: find artists at their live shows, press unmarked bills and/or extravagant checks into their sweaty palms.

if artist can't be reached/seen , then they're probably making enough money that they dont need yr patronage.

james gyre... January 16, 2009 at 5:19 PM  

i feel that... i try to go to shows, support my local djs, etc... but if i waited to pay you until you played pittsburgh i'd be waiting a long time.

not to mention that with folks from completely different countries, i think an online solution could augment your approach.

gladbeast January 17, 2009 at 4:47 PM  

yes yes, i've been passing this around, would love to give any help i could..

as for authenticating artists, how about we contact them and ask them to join in the first instance, if there's an artist we want to support, we go find em, over time it would need to be more sophisticated but it would certainly get the balls rolling

as for jace's idea, there's alot of music lovers out here who can't even afford to go to the pub, let alone a show, but often have the odd few quid hanging out in their paypal..

big up yr vest!

Todd August 1, 2011 at 11:58 PM  

@rupture - I actually tried that once when Lusine came to town several years back because I'd downloaded a number of his albums. I explained what I'd done and tried to give him a $20. He turned me down and said to buy the album. I think this was probably for two reasons: 1 - it feels weird to take money from somebody for "no reason". 2 - his label supports him, so he wants to support them back.

I think #2 is the bigger issue regarding this model. I have no problem taking money from the big labels that spend a million bucks getting a track radio play, but taking loot from a "mom and pop" label that truly supports their artists for their art work, I don't think is the way to go.

got money? feed kids!

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