From: Adam Rifkin (adam@KnowNow.com)
Date: Fri Sep 15 2000 - 17:50:43 PDT
> The original Offspring announcement is here:
Sweet! Going there we see...
| Just as technology has made leaps and bounds over those last two years,
| plans for the download and release of Conspiracy Of One are
| significantly more sophisticated. Anyone who purchases the actual CD
| will have the opportunity to use proprietary new technology, located
| directly on the physical compact disc, to launch into a coded part of
| the band web site and become a member of The Offspring Nation. The
| Offspring Nation is a digital fan club offering incentives and benefits
| including subsequent exclusive downloads, animated films, gated chats
| with the artist, advance ticket sales and more. Dexter Holland says, "We
| decided that we would create a super fan club for those of our fans who
| actually buy our CD. The CD has a key in the CD-Extra section that
| registers members to The Offspring Nation, our fan club. We figure since
| we make our music available to everyone for free this will act as a
| special acknowledgement to our fans who go to the trouble to buy our CD."
I'm buying five copies just on principle. I wonder if they're still
selling Napster merchandise? (checks) Yup...
Well, I know what Rohit's getting for *his* next birthday... :)
> Also, by way of completeness, Smashing Pumpkins released their final
> contractual album to friends of the band with the intent that they put
> it up on Napster as quickly as possible as a FU to the unsupportive
> record label that was supposed to be supporting them. For the life of
> me I can't find the article although I am convinced it came out on
> Monday as they whole album was available then.
Here's the article as I remember it on Salon.com from yesterday:
> (By Janelle Brown) September 14 -- There are millions of songs
> available on Napster that the record labels would rather you didn't
> download. And then there are the songs that they really, really don't
> want you to download. Think of Madonna's new single "Music," an
> unfinished version of which appeared on Napster months before it was
> released. Or the parody that wittily (and unflatteringly) combined
> Eminem's "The Real Slim Shady" lyrics with the music from Britney
> Spears' "Oops! ... I Did It Again."
> This week we can add two more offerings to the list: hitherto unreleased
> albums from the Wallflowers and the Smashing Pumpkins, both of which are
> circulating like mad via Napster.
> ... Much like Madonna's "Music," the Wallflowers' CD appears to have
> been ripped and distributed on Napster by some enterprising insider (A
> journalist? An anonymous label-head looking for early-bird publicity?)
> who had an advance copy of the album.
> But the appearance of the Smashing Pumpkins album is no mistake
> whatsoever. The Smashing Pumpkins have reportedly been unhappy with
> their label, Virgin Records, for years. So they decided to give Virgin
> the big middle finger by releasing "Machina II/The Friends & Enemies
> of Modern Music" -- their final album, ever -- for free online.
> According to press accounts based on (since-erased) posts on the
> smashingpumpkins.com bulletin board, a disgruntled Billy Corgan
> distributed a mere 25 vinyl copies of the album to unnamed friends and
> fans and told them to distribute the songs far and wide. The result
> has been nothing short of astounding.
> The album will now apparently not be sold by Virgin at all, although
> the hordes of fans trading the MP3 version don't care, since they are
> already getting it for free. Radio stations are playing the album --
> obtained via Napster -- and fans without MP3 players can even buy a
> burned CD from enterprising entrepreneurs on eBay.
(Now going for $7.50, not quite F*dCompany, is it?
Hey, what happened to the F*dCompany auction anyway? Looks like it has
> Call it proof positive that the distribution network doesn't need
> record labels at all -- except, of course, to sell the actual records
> that will pay those bands back. Odds are good that the Pumpkins won't
> make a cent off "Machina II," but sweet revenge is its own reward.
> Did Napster's lawyers thrill at these latest shenanigans, or worry
> that the RIAA's lawyers will use it as proof that Napster damages
> record industry profits? According to Napster's final written legal
> brief, submitted Wednesday, those profits aren't really the issue
> being debated anyway: The brief argues that "This case is not about
> whether Plaintiffs can use their control over music copyrights to
> achieve control over Napster's decentralized technology and prevent it
> from transforming the Internet in ways that might undermine their
> present chokehold on music promotion and distribution."
> After all, Madonna and Eminem seem to be wildly successful despite
> Napster; CD sales, overall, are finally rising; and even if Virgin
> never profits from that illicit release, a whole lot of fans are now
> happily talking about the Smashing Pumpkins. You can't buy that kind
> of buzz, and in the digital age you sure can't control it.
How 'bout dem Olympics? :)
How 'bout dat Google kangaroo?
Ever had one of those weeks where the weekend is just gonna be more of
the same? :)
MP3.com has banned a song that witters on about the DVD hacking code DeCSS. In the song, Joseph Wecker sings a version of the code - which is subject to various lawsuits in the US over its being a hacking tool. It doesn't sound like a top ten hit, but MP3.com has decided that the lyrics are "offensive or otherwise inappropriate". Web site 2600.com got in hot water when it posted the code and MP3.com doesn't want the same hassle. The code writers claim DeCSS was designed to play legal DVDs on Linux. But it's the added bonus that the software breaks through copy protection that has got on the Motion Picture Association of America's nerves. It's a kinda Napster for the video industry. Wecker told CNet: "It's gone one step too far. It's illegal to photocopy a copyrighted poem. But now it's like it has become illegal to tell someone how the Xerox works." We think it's shocking that by getting so much press attention DeCSS has now entered the mainstream. We're considering suing ourselves. -- Kieren McCarthy, http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/1/13298.html
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