January 10, 2005
Volume 7, Issue 7
Sovereign and INTENT Team on "Petra & Bill"
DCIA Members Sovereign Artists and INTENT MediaWorks are partnering on the most impressive major music P2P file-sharing promotion to date with Sovereign's release of "Petra Haden and Bill Frisell" on Tuesday.
Featuring the astonishing vocal harmonies of singer-songwriter-violinist Petra Haden and the critically-acclaimed passionate guitar-playing of Bill Frisell, the self-titled album contains twelve tracks – an eclectic mix of lushly arranged standards and new songs from artists and composers Elliot Smith, Foo Fighters, Coldplay, George Gershwin, Tom Waits, Stevie Wonder, and Henry Mancini – to name a few – unlike anything heard before.
The last track on the CD, "Throughout," an original penned by Bill Frisell, will be available free on P2P, with all other tracks available to purchase for just $0.89 each.
This marks the first major release to use INTENT's Palladium platform, which allows media to be provisioned across all leading P2P software programs, as well as enabling ad-sponsored media to be dynamically targeted based on its content.
INTENT's new platform will allow the end-user experience to be identical whether the track is downloaded from a hosted website such as All About Jazz or Off the Peer, or by means of a peer-to-peer software program such as BearShare, eDonkey, Grokster, Kazaa, or TrustyFiles. In addition, there is no requirement to setup an account with INTENT – all of this is enabled by an e-commerce gateway that accepts major credit cards or PayPal accounts.
The daughter of jazz legend Charlie Haden, Petra Haden grew up surrounded by music. As one of triplets, she constantly sang with her two sisters and began playing the violin at age eight. Petra was the lead vocalist for That Dog, a Los Angeles indie-pop rock group, and The Rentals, and has collaborated with artists ranging from Sean Lennon to Victoria Williams to Yuka Honda of Cibo Matto.
Bill Frisell is celebrated for his singularly original approach to the guitar which blends rock and country with jazz, blues and electronic loops. He has released numerous solo albums to widespread critical acclaim, and has contributed to the work of Elvis Costello, Ginger Baker, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Bono, Brian Eno, and Daniel Lanois, as well as scoring a variety of film projects. Bill has been nominated for a Grammy for Best Contemporary Jazz Album alongside Sovereign label-mate Don Grusin.
"Petra Haden and Bill Frisell" was produced by Lee Townsend and engineered by Tucker Martine. It was recorded and mixed at Trillium Lane Studios on Bainbridge Island, Washington, and mastered by Greg Calbi at Sterling Sound, New York City.
Billboard has this to say about the new release: "The shy duo date of vocalist/violinist Petra Haden and jazz guitarist Bill Frisell on "Petra Haden and Bill Frisell" (Sovereign Artists) is a delicate flower with deep roots. Quiet, intimate and softly floating, this album is an eclectic mix of mild-mannered pop tunes that matter. There's CHEMISTRY between Haden and Frisell!"
Report from CEO Marty Lafferty
We heartily congratulate Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) President Gary Shapiro for a very successful Consumer Electronics Show, 2005 International CES, with more than 130,000 attendees, hundreds of valuable sessions, and 11 city blocks of exhibits relevant to our industry.
The digital revolution was alive and well last week with interoperability and autonomy, miniaturization and enlargement, home-networking and mobile-portability, plus convergence and divergence, spawning an explosion of innovation.
Kudos also to Victor Harwood for mounting the Digital Hollywood CES track and special thanks to "Next Generation P2P" panelists Adrian Sexton, Vice President of Digital Media at Lions Gate Entertainment; Derek Broes, Director of Windows Client Strategic relations at Microsoft's Media and Entertainment Convergence Technology Group; Marc Morgenstern, Vice President and General Manager of Overpeer; Travis Kalanick, Founder and Chairman of RedSwoosh; Mike Weiss President & CEO of Streamcast Networks (owner of Morpheus); and Gerd Leonhard, Founder and CEO of ThinkAndLink.biz and Senior Advisor of Media Rights Technologies.
BigChampagne provided industry metrics to kick-off our panel: P2P audiences have steadily grown from 5.3 million average simultaneous users in December 2002 to 7.5 million in December 2004. As of the fourth quarter 2004, more than 70% of file formats redistributed on P2P were audio, with video growing most quickly, and pornography representing a very small percentage. The top three Hollywood features being redistributed via P2P during the first week of January were "Spiderman 2" (510,252), "The Incredibles" (480,765), and "Shrek 2" (462,866). Regarding the largest segment, music, iTunes has sold 200 million songs to date while, during the same period, 56 billion music tracks have been acquired on P2P, per RIAA estimates.
Adrian Sexton said the P2P model has not yet been fully seasoned, and that content owners and software providers need to come to the table to resolve outstanding issues. Most important will be the development of new secure standards for P2P and making consumers believe in payment for content by showing them what's in it for them. Lions Gate is engaged in a number of initiatives to protect its content from infringement. Studios need to be able to have a reliable, consistent means for consumers to access their content on terms stipulated by rights holders.
Derek Broes noted that we need to fix this generation of P2P before moving to the next, and that P2P software providers should begin to make comparable commitments to filtering as they do to efficiency enhancements. He foresees a very fast learning curve as major entertainment content is licensed for P2P, with new opportunities for further expansion in areas such as micro-payments being quickly identified and becoming areas for rapid growth as well. He believes there will be an aggressive movement by major players to exploit P2P this year, and that file sharing represents just the most rudimentary example of distributed computing applications.
Marc Morgenstern indicated that redirecting consumers from unauthorized to fully licensed content will be the next major challenge for P2P. He acknowledged that both the user base and the traffic in P2P are continuing to increase, but that so is copyright infringement at this juncture – and that is what must be addressed as a top priority. Just as the Web spawned successful paid services, so to P2P will come to support content-based revenue streams. He envisions many different business models being supported by P2P, with the winners those who succeed in putting the most quality in front of consumers.
Travis Kalanick said his new venture, RedSwoosh, is focused on non-infringing uses of P2P for major media companies to transport vast quantities of very large files. There remains an enormous "moat" between content providers and consumers in the digital age, and technology companies should respond to the opportunities this creates by responding to consumer needs. He condemns the demonizing of file-sharing technology as detrimental to progress. He projects a major turning point for the P2P distribution channel in 2005, because he is seeing real deals from major entertainment companies forthcoming. Once the majors have entered this market, copyright infringement will fade to a manageable level.
Mike Weiss began by exclaiming that Morpheus should have received an award as scapegoat of the year in 2004 for having been incorrectly blamed for a host of major entertainment industry woes. He pointed to Creative Commons as a current successful adoption of P2P and to the promotion of new entertainment as another clear victory. He argued that the lack of content licensing represents the biggest need for improvement in the distribution channel, and called upon Congress to help address anti-competitive behavior by major entertainment aggregators.
Mike opined that what needs to happen next is experimentation, and invited Lions Gate to negotiate with Streamcast on how to implement trial solutions. He said content owners need to get past the issue of not being able to control P2P and learn to harness it; and called for a moratorium on litigation to help encourage experimentation.
Gerd Leonhard said that distribution is no longer the issue. Value of content and technology to the consumer is the issue. P2P is about interaction and finding communities of shared interest, more like instant messaging than traditional one-way content distribution. He noted that there is now more interest in music than ever before thanks to the expanded discovery that P2P has fostered, but that we're in an awkward period between old and new business models. He observed that new entertainment distribution channels have not cannibalized previous ones, but have added to both supply and demand for entertainment content. He foresees P2P driving an end to distinctions between mechanical and performance licensing for music.
Most panelists seemed to concur that major milestones in commercial development of the P2P distribution channel will likely be delayed until after the Supreme Court reaches a decision, perhaps by June or July, regarding the MGM v. Grokster case. Nevertheless, laying the groundwork for commercial development, and planning for innovative consumer solutions, should be able to take place productively even as the high court conducts its proceedings.
Distributed Computing Projects
Excerpted from Distributed Computing News
If you haven't checked out BBR Distributed Computing clubs lately, now may be the perfect time. Whether you're searching for extraterrestrial life, cures for diseases, conservation of our natural resources, or trying to decipher codes - it's rewarding to be part of a group effort.
Team Discovery has two current projects: United Devices and Tuberous Sclerosis Complex. UD, administered by Grid.org, is dedicated to finding cures for cancer and smallpox. TSC, coordinated by The Rothberg Institute for Childhood Diseases, strives to cure Tuberous Sclerosis Complex.
Project Hope has 17 blades (A blade is a series of specialized computer components set up just to process DC projects) currently crunching.
Team Ecology is contributing their spare computing cycles toward preserving and protecting the earth's wilderness and rainforests. Thousands of acres of natural habitat are being destroyed daily, and the group believes their daily clicks will preserve some of this precious habitat for future generations.
One member of Team Ecology (Starfish) recently announced the deployment of stats pages for the Ecology Fund Eco clickers. There is Pay Pal link on the stats page for those who might like to make a monetary contribution towards the maintenance of these pages.
Team Helix is a group of individuals who have come together to find cures for such diseases as Alzheimer's, cancer and diabetes. Many members of Team Helix are currently offering their time in the memory of loved one's passed, while others are eager to find a cure for family members - or in some cases - themselves.
Team Starfire continues to prove the existence of intelligent life on Earth by looking for it in space. Running the SETI@Home project sponsored by UC-Berkeley, this Broadband Reports team puts its spare cycles to work to analyze the "take" from radio telescopes like the Arecibo Radio Telescope in Puerto Rico.
One of Team Starfire's best resources in the race is the fleet of "Crunchenstein" machines, which are owned by the team and hosted by members. This is another "blade" type project where members contribute computer parts to create a monster "cruncher". Crunchenstein has completed 66,886 work units to date.
Broadband Report's RC5-72 team is one of 3,900 teams competing for distributed.net, working to solve RSA Labs' 72-bit cryptographic challenge. Distributed.net teams have won both 56-bit and 64-bit challenges sponsored by RSA Labs. The RC-72 challenge was started over 500 days ago, and could potentially run for another 350,000 days at the current rate - if every possible key is examined.
Shared Media Licensing and 96 Decibels
Weed has a different view of Internet file-sharing. Instead of trying to shut down file-sharing, the company behind Weed, DCIA Member Shared Media Licensing, thinks people should be paid for it. Instead of punishing fans who don't respect artists' rights, they think it makes more sense to reward those who do. Artists and fans both win with the Weed music format.
A Weed file can be played three times for free on any Windows PC. After three free plays, listeners are asked to pay for the file. Weed files play on current Windows Media-compatible player software such as Windows Media Player (recommended) or RealPlayer. The free Weed software is used to purchase files and to keep track of account information. To see how Weed files work, download a few songs from the Weed Music Directory.
Buyers can share Weed files with others by means of P2P software programs, for which the file sharer earns a commission for additional purchases. Fans can become music distributors instantly by purchasing a collection of Weed files and posting them in their shared folders. It's that easy. They don't have to fill out any applications, go to any interviews, attend any meetings, file any reports, or answer to anyone.
A Weed file is like a store wrapped around an audio file. Rather than having one place where a fan can acquire songs, super distributors such as 96 Decibels offer independent artists a broad base of websites from which their songs can be initially purchased. 96 Decibels' Weed Music Directory is now syndicated on over 187 websites and is well on its way to meeting its 2005 goal of 1,000 sites.
96 Decibels provides value-added features when an artist "Weedifies" – or opts into the WeedShare system through its Independent Content Provider (ICP) services. Free band sites are available as one of the perks, as well as tools such as 96 Decibels' BuilditEZ Site Builder that make it simple to create and maintain music sites. Video-hosting services and video-ready websites are also available for video-savvy musicians, utilizing the easy-to-use content manager that provides a clean user interface and no coding required.
Under standard Weed distribution terms, the rights holder receives 50% of each sale, the immediate file sharer get 20%, the person who shared the file with that person gets 10%, and the person who shared the file before that gets 5% of the sale price. Weed collects 15% for processing.
Weed files can be redistributed via P2P software programs, FTP, IRC, or on CD/DVD. Sharing Weed file links via email is a great way to let friends in on musical discoveries. Fans can add comments in the reviews area available for every track listed. All that's needed to get started is a Weed file, the free Weed software, a PayPal account, and some ideas for distribution.
BayTSP Launches FirstSource
Digital Media Wire
P2P PATROL participant BayTSP, a provider of P2P tracking services for the movie and music industries, announced last Monday the launch of a new system called FirstSource, which it says can automatically identify the first users to upload copyrighted or trademarked content to certain other file-sharing software users. The company said that several thousand available copies of movie files can typically be traced back to such an initial upload file. "Identifying and taking action against the first uploaders can greatly slow the distribution of illegally-obtained intellectual property and might make users think twice before doing it," said BayTSP CEO Mark Ishikawa.
Coming Events of Interest
P2P PATROL - Parents And Teens React On Line - The industry's anti-child-pornography initiative will hold its quarterly working session with private sector and law enforcement representatives in Dallas, TX on February 1st. For more information and to learn how you can contribute to P2P PATROL, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 888-864-DCIA.
2005 Media Summit New York - Held at the McGraw Hill Building, February 9th–10th, this will be the premier international conference on motion pictures, television, cable & satellite, broadband, wireless, publishing, radio, magazines, news & print media, advertising and marketing. "Global Media + Technology Innovation = Communications Revolution" is this year's theme.
The DCIA will hold its Winter General Meeting the evening of February 9th in conjunction with MSNY. Please contact Member Services leader Karen Kaplowitz at 888-890-4240 or email@example.com for more information.
Canadian Music Week - Headquartered at the Fairmont Royal York in Toronto, March 2nd-5th, CMW will be the largest music and entertainment convention in Canada with delegates representing music broadcasters, manufacturers, retailers and distributors, new media/Internet companies, recording artists, and musicians.
The DCIA Is proud to participate in "Redemption Song: Profit from P2P" moderated by LA Times correspondent Joseph Menn March 3rd at 2:45 PM. P2P has been the killer app driving the billion-dollar broadband business, and can generate new revenues for music rights-holders. There are a slew of new companies offering moneymaking P2P plans. This panel will consider whether it's time to talk carrot instead of stick.