Wednesday, May 17, 2006

The $150,000 Song(s)

Suedo Apmuza
The RIAA, protecting the interests of the record labels and artists, sued XM satellite Radio today because of an XM device that lets users record songs for later listening - essentially a 'radio TiVo.' The RIAA lawsuit seeks $150,000 per song downloaded to the device.

Now, I am all for paying artists a fair share. The payment to broadcast a song on XM radio is for a one-time playback. This device clearly circumvents that, allowing users to listen to a broadcast song multiple times. XM is even encouraging its users to download songs and create a personal catalog of music -- so there is something wrong and there does need to be additional compensation. But $150,000 per song per customer?

More like $6-$9 - the cost of buying the single from a record store. Heck, $.99 from iTunes? XM is expected to settle the case by paying the RIAA a set amount every time a device is sold, so there is no way that $150K number ever gets used...but it still bugs me. Who can possibly justify $150K of lost profit per song? I'm not going to spend $150K over my lifetime on CDs, downloads, concerts, posters, etc. I can justify the $100,000-per-stitch of personal injury lawsuits better than this crazy talk.

Good case, bad math.

Indexed by tags Suedo Apmuza, XM, RIAA, Lawsuit


Blogger The Good Reverend said...

Donny does the math.

7:00 PM  

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