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Musicians, Artistes and the Internet

It is interesting to note that all the artistes and musicians from super music stars to the lower level musicians have taken internet as a tool for the improvement in their creation and marketing the works created by them. The internet is of immense use to them to get more inspiration. At the same time the artistes and musicians through internet are able to build a community of their own by communicating with their fans as well as fellow musicians. This in turn gives them an opportunity to market their creations.

On an online survey conducted by Mary Madden (2004) on behalf of Pew Internet & American Life Project the following interesting facts about the perceptions of the musicians and artistes about internet emerge: Without exception all the artists and musicians interviewed opined the peer-to-peer file sharing of copyrighted music should be declared as illegal. However most of them felt that this act of P2P file sharing will do any harm to the creative industry. It is a fact that internet has helped one and all of them to make more money and at the same time has made it harder to protect their works from piracy or illegal file sharing.

It is amazing to note that the musicians and artists spend more time on the internet than the average American says the Pew Internet and American life project study. A sizeable proportion of the artists feel that the internet has been proved to be a better marketing tool for them. On the internet piracy the artists are not perturbed too much on the file sharing happening on the internet. But at the same time they want to maintain control over their creations. Most of them do not feel that piracy is a major threat to the industry.

On the unauthorized P2P file sharing the artists feel that the companies should be taken to task rather than the individuals. In the case of musicians the online musicians have found the internet taking a deep penetration into their musical lives. The musicians use the internet for gathering information, searching for tools and getting support online from the fellow musicians. A majority of the musicians felt that the internet had a greater impact in connecting them with a multitude of audience and most of the musicians felt that internet generally has created only a positive impact on the sale of their products.

On the basis of the survey 67 percent of the musicians are of the opinion that the complete control over the copyrighted work has to remain with the legal owners and most of them are happy with the protection given by the copyright laws to their works. Most of the musicians participated in the survey were of the opinion that it is not illegal to send a music file to some known person, while the actions peer-to-peer networks acting without permission should be viewed seriously.

It is surprising to note that the musicians have a wide range of suggestions to offer for addressing the problem of unauthorized sharing of music online. The survey has found out that the consumers have a different view about the copyright issues than those of the musician and the artists. The survey also found that the consumers are less familiar with the copyright laws and how it can protect the works of the original creator. Internet is always regarded as the cheap and the easiest way to disseminate the multimedia information.

Despite the constraints placed by the bandwidth capacity massive quantities of data and information is passed through internet. In order to facilitate such large transmissions data compression tools have been invented which addresses the volume issues in data transmission. Such data compression algorithms help the sound and video transmission also to a great extent. One of the second generation data compression algorithms developed by Motion Pictures Group or MP3 as shortly known has gained great support from the internet users.

“Using MP3 compression, digital music takes up one-twelfth of the original space without any discernible loss in audio quality, and therefore, becomes viable for Internet download. For example, a five-minute song uncompressed would take about 50 megabytes in the original format but when applying MP3 compression, the size reduces to approximately 4 megabytes. Therefore, downloading a song would only take a few minutes even on a 28. 8 modem. ” (Maniac Tools) Maniac Tools observe “it was quickly adopted by a large number of hackers that posted copyrighted works of many music artists on their web sites.

The small size of MP3 compressed files (1/12 of the original size), the playback quality (indistinguishable from a CD for a normal listener) and the fact that a few companies plan to release their first portable player during this year, sent the major players in the music industry into red-alert. ” (Maniac Tools) The success of MP3 can be attributed to the following reasons: The Motion pictures group has made strategic alliance with the music industry majors who are also influential buyers of the technology.

By selecting these powerful groups of strategic partners this has created the momentum necessary to achieve the heights of success. Even though the MP3 standard is subject to the control of the International Standards Organization the product is free to use by any manufacturer without payment of royalty and the creation and dissemination of MPEG tools (MEPG tools are the encoders and decoders connected with the MP3 Technology – example WinAmp) is available free of cost. The effect of network on both the supply and demand sides is exceedingly supported by different sector players.

Multimedia companies who are game developers use the MP3 technology for their audio developments. Because of the overwhelming advantages the MP 3 technology has to offer to the pirates by the use of technology with the accompanying tools, MP 3 has virtually taken the online music industry for a ride and this has created a holy war between the recording industry and he pirates who excessively adopt the technology to encode, decode and distribute the copy-written MP songs or album absolutely for free.

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