Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Media Music

Ask Slashdot: Which International Online Music Stores Are Legit? 166

Posted by timothy
from the when-googling-for-mp3s-isn't-enough dept.
rjnagle writes "I'm an American lover of music who is interested in buying legally music from other countries. How do I know which CD/online music stores are legit and actually benefit the artist? I'm very cost-conscious and prefer indie music anyway, but the types of international music for sale on Amazon/iTunes tends to be from the bigger labels. Suppose I wanted to buy music from Pakistan/Ukraine/China/Brazil/Chad. What's the best way to identify which labels or online stories are authorized to sell them? Perhaps all I need is a list of the best known online music stores for each region (Yesasia.com, etc)."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Ask Slashdot: Which International Online Music Stores Are Legit?

Comments Filter:
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Just don't. Donate instead. If you can't infringe.

  • Hard to tell (Score:5, Informative)

    by vikingpower (768921) <exercitussolus.gmail@com> on Monday November 19, 2012 @04:14AM (#42024941) Homepage Journal
    AFAIK, the line between "legit" and "illegal" is blurry in at least two of the countries the author mentions.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/search/display.html?terms=phonorecord&url=/uscode/html/uscode17/usc_sec_17_00000602----000-.html

      • by moeinvt (851793)

        ?
        How do you navigate to the music catalog on that site?

      • USC DOES NOT APPLY outside the Territorial United States.

        The United States stops at the Western fringe of the Atlantic Ocean, and with the exception of a few SMALL islands, the Eastern fringe of the Pacific Ocean.

        Believe it or not there are about 6.7 billion people who are NOT United States citizens, who do NOT live in the United States, to whom this "USC" does NOT apply.

    • Re:Hard to tell (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Xest (935314) on Monday November 19, 2012 @05:28AM (#42025219)

      That and I think "legit" and "benefit the artist" are largely mutually exclusive most of the time.

      National and international music federations like the RIAA, IFPI, etc. seem to get to decide what sites are and aren't legit, yet they're also the organisations whose sales least benefit the artist.

      As someone else said, paying the artist direct where possible is the best option, but even that assumes the artist has the rights to sell directly their produce and hasn't signed over all sales rights to an organisation as described above.

      • by tehcyder (746570)

        paying the artist direct where possible is the best option, but even that assumes the artist has the rights to sell directly their produce and hasn't signed over all sales rights to an organisation as described above.

        If artists could manage quite happily without these organisations, then why don't they just do that?

        Basically, the artist want all the advantages (advances on royalties, management, advertising and marketing campaigns, and all the rest) but then whine when they have to pay for them. Well, fuck it, they can just do it all themselves if they really want to. No one's stopping them.

        But, of course, the poor artists are just musicians and don't understand all that finance stuff.

    • None of them (Score:5, Informative)

      by ranulf (182665) on Monday November 19, 2012 @06:10AM (#42025357)
      While the might be legitimate in their own country, they're typically only licenced to distribute within their own territory, because other companies will have the distribution rights elsewhere. So, almost certainly, you won't actually have bought the right to use that music even though you paid money, because they didn't have the rights to sell you.
      • by Solandri (704621)
        That too is an anachronism which needs to die, at least for online digital sales. Territorial distribution rights made sense when each distributor wasn't physically capable of supplying your product beyond a certain area. You needed territorial distribution rights to prevent conflicts between the multitude of distributors needed to insure thorough availability.

        But there is no sense of distance nor territory on the Internet. If you can sell an MP3 to the guy down the street over the Internet, you can s
    • by Anonymous Coward

      Do you mean "organized crime" and "content distribution and artist extortion Mafia" "legit"?
      Or real-world legit?

      Supporting the former, means supporting criminals who...
      1. create artificial scarcity by declaring some kind of imaginary property,
      2. play a protection racket scheme on everyone who doesn't obey their lies,
      3. bribe and manipulate governments globally, which is treason and gets you up to 10 years in prison, to artificially keep up dead business models,
      2. abuse artists and do to them, what they say

    • Re:Hard to tell (Score:5, Insightful)

      by jonwil (467024) on Monday November 19, 2012 @08:25AM (#42025779)

      Look at what happened to allofmp3.com. Followed all the laws in Russia. Paid all the required money to the Russian music licensing agency. Yet it was still targeted by the RIAA who claimed it was "illegal"

      I suspect it would be quite hard to find any digital music store in some of these Asian countries that is both accessible to the USA AND would be considered acceptable/legit by the RIAA.

      • W00t, so the American MAFIAA is more powerful than the Russian Mafia. Who would have known?
      • by wvmarle (1070040)

        Wrong example.

        Allofmp3 was selling music from all over the world, including many popular American artists whose copyrights were held by members of the RIAA.

        Submitter is obviously looking for non-American music: Pakistani music from Pakistan, Chinese music from China. As long as those sites do not sell anything whose copyrights are held by the RIAA, the RIAA has nothing to say about where and to whom they sell.

        The real question is: do they have the correct license under their local laws (including selling to

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 19, 2012 @04:16AM (#42024945)

    None. Bottomline buy direct whenever possible. Contact the artist if you can't.

    • by slim (1652) <john@ha[ ]up.net ['rtn' in gap]> on Monday November 19, 2012 @07:29AM (#42025595) Homepage

      Yes. This. And it only occurred to me recently.

      I'd seen a band at a festival, and decided to buy some of their stuff. I could have just gone to Amazon, and usually I would have done. But on a whim, I posted on their facebook page -- "hey, if I want some of your CDs, which online shop gives you the biggest cut of the profit?" They replied "buy it direct from us".

      I ended up sending a cheque in the post to a residential address -- and the CDs arrived a few days later, and I have warm and fuzzy feelings from supporting the artist. They also had "tour exclusive" CDs which weren't available any other way.

      Of course if I'd had my wits about me, I could have bought those CDs from them at the gig.

      It might be harder work with World Music, but it's surely worth investigating.

      • by wvmarle (1070040)

        Then that band has good contracts. Or, more likely, it has no contract with any record company, as otherwise they would not be allowed to sell directly.

        Besides, buying CDs at the gig doesn't necessarily mean the artist receives more for it, than if you were to buy it in a shop or by placing a mail order over the Internet.

    • by rjnagle (122374)

      (I'm the original poster of the ASK SLASHDOT).

      Gosh, does that mean I need to learn Urdu just to figure out where they think I ought to buy something? :) Or just to figure out which website is the official site and which is some fanboy's site for the same Pakistani popstar?

      Seriously though, it can be time-consuming to go to sites for individual artists. A lot of them don't have good English translations. I tried buying something on a Russian site, and although I know a little Russian, i couldn't follow the i

      • by rjnagle (122374)

        One other thought. I'll all for liberalization and reform of copyright laws, but it seems that the pirated sites for Russian music (to take one country as an example) far outnumber the legit sites. I once tried to buy an obscure Russian electronica classic by Agata Kristi and couldn't find any site which sold it legitimately although I could find dozens which distributed it (some of which charged money, some of which did not).

        Several years later, I was overjoyed to realize that the Agata Kristi album made [amazon.com]

  • All of them (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gmhowell (26755) <gmhowell@gmail.com> on Monday November 19, 2012 @04:22AM (#42024951) Homepage Journal

    All of them are legit for certain values of 'legit', 'international', 'music', 'benefit', and 'artist'.

    In other news, we have always been at war with Eastasia.

    Seriously, if you find a store that meets ALL of those criteria, anywhere, it'll be the first. I think the only way to do that is to find a copy of the music anywhere you want, then throw a buck or ten to whomever you decide is the artist. In the case of a RIAA (or local equivalent) band, there's a good chance that the actual artist is not the official artist of record.

    • by aliquis (678370)

      In the case of a RIAA (or local equivalent) band, there's a good chance that the actual artist is not the official artist of record.

      What?

      • by Canazza (1428553)

        Maybe he's on about the artists who only sing the songs, as opposed to the artists who write it for them?

        Most of the Boy/Girl bands out there have their songs written by professional songwriters so if you're going to throw them a buck, you have to decide which party to donate to.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Then you have the advertisers, without which you would have never heard of the band.
          And manager (shit does not just happen, someone has to make it happen, I'd guess it is rare that it is the band that does that).
          And post-production team to make it sound good.
          And the accountants to ensure taxes are filed in time and correctly.

          And I'm sure 10s to 100s of other people that turn a band into viable business.

          You could say that you only need to throw the money at the band, and let them handle all that shit.
          And the

          • by PopeRatzo (965947)

            Then you have the advertisers, without which you would have never heard of the band.

            Are you living in the 1970s? You think people still need "advertising" to hear about a band?

            No, there really are not "10s to 100s of other people" that "turn a band into a viable business".

            I suppose it might matter what you mean by "viable business". If it means "get rich enough to buy a private plane and a castle in Scotland" then yes you need 10s to 100s of people. But if you want to make a nice middle class income all

            • by tehcyder (746570)

              Then you have the advertisers, without which you would have never heard of the band.

              Are you living in the 1970s? You think people still need "advertising" to hear about a band?

              No, there really are not "10s to 100s of other people" that "turn a band into a viable business".

              I suppose it might matter what you mean by "viable business". If it means "get rich enough to buy a private plane and a castle in Scotland" then yes you need 10s to 100s of people. But if you want to make a nice middle class income all you need is maybe 1 or two people besides the band (unless one of the band members can work a calculator, which is not a dead cinch, in my experience).

              Well, fine, let them earn a nice middle class income. Who's stopping them?
              br. Meanwhile, it is the artists themselves who sign up to big record companies that DO want the advertising/marketing etc and DO want to get rich enough to buy a private plane a nd a castle in Scotland. No one's forcing them.

              • by PopeRatzo (965947)

                Meanwhile, it is the artists themselves who sign up to big record companies that DO want the advertising/marketing etc and DO want to get rich enough to buy a private plane a nd a castle in Scotland.

                Yes, of course. I'm just saying you don't need "10s to 100s of other people" to make a living as a musician or to turn one's music into a "viable business".

                  I have first-hand experience.

          • by pjt33 (739471) on Monday November 19, 2012 @09:13AM (#42025963)

            And the accountants to ensure taxes are filed in time and correctly.

            Are you sure that's the major role of the accountants in big labels? I thought their role was more to ensure that there were no profits, so there's no tax to pay. And nothing left to pay the musicians either.

          • by fa2k (881632)

            And post-production team to make it sound like your loudness button is stuck in the "on" position.

            FTFY (only half serious though, you need some post production)

        • Re:All of them (Score:4, Interesting)

          by History's Coming To (1059484) on Monday November 19, 2012 @07:11AM (#42025531) Journal
          The best selling songwriter in the UK is Mel C from the Spice Girls. Seriously. She writes a high percentage of all the UK produced pop songs. "Chart" music has very little to do with artists, it's more of a fashion marketing company than anything else.
          • by tehcyder (746570)

            The best selling songwriter in the UK is Mel C from the Spice Girls. Seriously. She writes a high percentage of all the UK produced pop songs. "Chart" music has very little to do with artists, it's more of a fashion marketing company than anything else.

            I don't see what your argument is.

            You may think the Spice Girls were shit. I would agree with you. But they were popular. That's what "best selling" means: a lot of people bought your stuff. If Mel C writes crappy songs for other artists that are popular, that's not her fault.

            Whether it's a question of money or not, popularity has been, and always will be, orthoganal to artistic merit.

            • It was more of an aside than an argument, but if you want one it is this: It's very difficult to know who to give the money to if you want to pay directly to an artist unless they're an indie singer/songwriter. Want to send money to whoever came up with Track X? Would that be the performer? The writer? The lawyer who drafted the agreement between performer and writer? The session musicians? At the end of the day it's often a simple choice between paying a huge record company or paying a single singer/
          • Re:All of them (Score:4, Insightful)

            by alexander_686 (957440) on Monday November 19, 2012 @10:36AM (#42026557)

            Why focus on chart music when we should be focusing on music?

            If a buy a Star Wars soundtrack, should I kick my money over to John Williams or the London Symphony Orchestra?

            Face it – there are a lot of people who can write music but can’t carry a tune – see Bob Dylan. And there are a lot of people who can carry a tune but can’t write.

            Not everybody can be a singer, songwriter, and business manager.

        • by AmiMoJo (196126) *

          Maybe he's on about the artists who only sing the songs, as opposed to the artists who write it for them?

          So it's a choice between sending a few bucks to the songwriters or the AutoTune(TM) machine.

      • Look up session musicians [wikipedia.org]. Most RIAA "artists" are chosen for their looks. Giving money to RIAA labels is (mostly) supporting the true "pirates" of the music seas. If you want to support artists, go see a band playing live. Even then, avoid major label bands who nowadays have to sign over their concert rights.
        • by pecosdave (536896)

          Wear your skinny jeans, ride a fixed gear bike there, and don't forget the ironic glasses, hat, and mustache, especially if you're a woman.

          • by ysth (1368415)

            iconic glasses, perhaps?

            • by tehcyder (746570)

              iconic glasses, perhaps?

              No, he means ironic. Young fashion-victims often wear non-prescription-lensed glasses by expensive designers, which deliberately look like old-fashioned clunky thick plastic framed monstrosities from the 1950s. It is a way of saying "look, I am so cool and attractive that I can even wear these things on my face and still look beautiful while simultaneously paying homage to Jean Paul Sartre/Buddy Holly/whoever."

  • How do I know which CD/online music stores are legit and actually benefit the artist?

    Attend pub with live music. Buy CD from the back of Dave the roadie's van.

    • by Rogerborg (306625)
      Read again: Yankee Doodle wants to bestow his many dollah on Johnny Foreigner. Pub gigs aren't the answer to that question.
      • by dwywit (1109409)

        Yes it bloody is! There are venues in Australia, you know. There's a lot of discs sold at them, too.

  • Magnatune (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 19, 2012 @04:29AM (#42024977)

    Try magnatune.com

    Fantastic music: Magnatune works with artists directly, not with record labels, and all their music is hand-picked. On average, they accept 3% of submissions

    Perfect audio quality: you get CD quality audio WAV files, as well as super-high quality VBR MP3s, AAC, and open source friendly FLAC and OGG formats

    No DRM: No copy protection (DRM), you can do what you like with your music

    Listen to everything: all their albums can be listened to in their entirety before you become a member

    Download everything: their monthly membership allows you to download anything from their entire catalog--no limits.

    Musicians get paid: 50% of your purchase price goes directly to the musician, not to labels and their lawyers

    Album art: every album includes high quality album art (in both Adobe Acrobat and 300DPI JPG formats)

    Give to your friends: They encourage you to give 3 copies of any music from your membership to your friends

    Artists direct: They sign contracts directly with musicians, so you can rest assured that they can legally license music to you, and no middlemen get in the way of the artist's royalties

    Podcast-legal: non-commercial podcasters can use their music for free

    No major labels: they have absolutely nothing to do with major labels or the RIAA

    Financially support Open Source: they financially support several open source projects such as Amarok and Rhythmbox

    • Magnatune is worth a try. Last time I looked, they were a bit expensive unless you really liked their catalog and downloaded a bunch. The catalog is rather eclectic. But you can certainly try before you buy.

    • Re:Magnatune (Score:5, Interesting)

      by olau (314197) on Monday November 19, 2012 @06:32AM (#42025423) Homepage

      I bought a lifetime membership of Magnatune not long ago for $240, after having followed them since their inception. They keep adding music to the collection, so at some point it went from "I should probably support these guys out of principle" to "they have enough music that this is a cheap deal".

      In addition to your points above, John Buckman is a cool dude. You can write a comment on his blog and get a reply.

      • In addition to your points above, John Buckman is a cool dude. You can write a comment on his blog and get a reply.

        I emailed him when Magnatune went subscription-only (I'd bought a dozen albums prior to that), with a bit of a moan that I could no longer buy per-album. I was astonished when I got a reply from him, setting out why he'd taken Magnatune down the route he had.

        As you say, cool.

    • Perfect audio quality: you get CD quality audio WAV files

      But... we want full multitrack recordings, so we can remix the various tracks to our own taste.

      This is a site for DIY nerds, don't expect them to just buy music and be happy.

    • by houghi (78078)

      Another is http://bandcamp.com/ [bandcamp.com]

  • by Tastecicles (1153671) on Monday November 19, 2012 @04:30AM (#42024983)

    Most artists have links to purchase or download their work on their website.

    Go to the artists' website. There you'll likely as not find a link or ten to Amazon or iTunes if they have a pressed-disc contract, or to direct downloads via http/ftp or torrents or some other free method if they're that way inclined to distribute their music. It's a model that works - just go to the Stereophonics website and download an album or two - and donate what you want! They made more off a single album this way than they ever did through a Big Five label with all their other material combined!

    • The thing is, how can you be sure it's the artist's website and not something the MAFiAA have set up for them? A while back, on facebook, a site called GiveMeFootball went about setting up pages for various popular footballers and calling them 'official'. They are 'official', in that they are official GMF pages, but have no endorsement from the players themselves. Is something like this possible for MAFiAA with domains?

      • nothing's impossible, I would go look on the shelves in HMV or wherever, look at the inlays on the CDs - if there's a website it'll be indicated somewhere near the barcode. If not, then Google is your friend. :)

  • Most of the legal music stores online here sell hardcopy music :-(. Flipkart [flipkart.com] is the only downloadable music store that I know of. No DRM. It has somewhat decent collection. Note that majority of Indian popular music is film songs, other popular categories being devotional and classical.

  • Icelandic music (Score:5, Informative)

    by arikol (728226) on Monday November 19, 2012 @04:33AM (#42024997) Journal

    If you want Icelandic music then http://www.icelandicmusic.com/ [icelandicmusic.com] is the real deal. Pretty good music that can be found there, but most of it obviously in a language that will sound like Klingon to most people...

    • by bikin (1113139) on Monday November 19, 2012 @05:51AM (#42025283)
      Considering this is Slashdot, I'll bet that more people understand Klingon than Icelandic.
    • Actually, I understand a little bit of both and they don't sound alike at all to me. Although, I get it that when they're shouting at you from a quickly decreasing distance, the difference between Vikings and Klingons becomes something of a moot point. (If that ever happens to you, a quick tip: Klingons are the swarthier ones.)
    • by xaxa (988988)

      If you want Icelandic music then http://www.icelandicmusic.com/ [icelandicmusic.com] is the real deal. Pretty good music that can be found there, but most of it obviously in a language that will sound like Klingon to most people...

      I wonder why they chose Silverlight for their player?

      Icelandic sounds like Norwegian/Swedish to me (which I don't understand). Picking the first video on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ecT5j3zaps [youtube.com] I can even understand a few words (just like Norwegian/Swedish).

      Icelandic is much closer to English than, say, Gaelic. Try understanding a single word from Runrig - Alba [youtube.com] (relatively famous Scottish folk-rock band).

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Just download the music where you can find it, "illegally" or otherwise, and then mail a dollar per CD directly to the artist. It's WAY more than they'd get from the legitimate sites like iTunes/Amazon most of the time for one sale, specially for more indie bands.

    • I can just imagine Madonna opening her mailbox in the morning and finding hundreds of envelopes with one dollar bills in them. That's sure to put her into a good mood for the rest of the day!

  • by vivtho (834049) on Monday November 19, 2012 @04:37AM (#42025011) Homepage
    You can download legit Indian and Pakistani music from Flyte [flipkart.com] which is a part of Flipkart (owned by Amazon)
  • by samjam (256347) on Monday November 19, 2012 @04:38AM (#42025013) Homepage Journal

    Many "legit" stores do not benefit the artists!

    Some sell the artists music without permission and do not reimburse the artists
    http://torrentfreak.com/apples-itunes-sued-by-artist-for-pirating-music-110812/ [torrentfreak.com]
    http://forum.tunecore.com/post/Album-on-iTunes-without-permission-5680939 [tunecore.com]

    Sometimes the artists get no money because of extraordinary business practices by their music publishers or associations
    http://www.salon.com/2000/06/14/love_7/ [salon.com]
    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100712/23482610186.shtml [techdirt.com]
    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20091203/1853507190.shtml [techdirt.com]
    and for interest
    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120323/18055718229/how-ascap-takes-money-successful-indie-artists-gives-it-to-giant-rock-stars.shtml [techdirt.com]

    Sometimes the artists get no money because their music publishers instruct them not to register with the copyright agency of that country SO THAT the publisher can claim that the seller is not legitimate because the artists get no money.
    http://www.transmissionentertainment.com/entry/russian_based_all_of_mp3coms_former_owner_may_see_jail_time_fines_and_a_mor/ [transmissi...inment.com]
    http://allofmp3.ru/press/centre.shtml?s=994&d=66219728 [allofmp3.ru] : "Even without an agreement between ROMS and the rightsholders, it is our understanding that ROMS, in particular, has sent several letters to the major record labels inviting them to collect their royalties. Those notices have been ignored."
    http://techcrunch.com/2007/07/25/former-allofmp3com-owner-faces-jail-time/ [techcrunch.com]

    Sometimes it's a choice between
    1. not paying
    2. paying and the artist gets no money
    3. paying and the artist gets no money and you support an abusive music industry
    4. paying and the artist gets money and you support an abusive music industry

    For mass music I opt for 2 where I can because I think it does least harm.
    For less popular music I use CD-Baby and other self publishing sites or buy direct from the artist.

  • Online music buying (Score:4, Interesting)

    by aurizon (122550) <bill,jackson&gmail,com> on Monday November 19, 2012 @04:40AM (#42025019)

    Benefit the artist directly, as in you buy a song and the artist get a portion? None of the established music publishers, none on itunes - unless it is an artist submitted track - wherein he gets the $$, less the itunes bite. That is not to say the established music publishers do not pay their artists, they usually do, via various mechanisms - just not a direct slice from each download.
    So find stuff listed by the artist, and buy those. In time the traditional publishers will fade away and all manner of created work, books, music, pictures, will involve direct purchase from the srtist via online purchase. There may be an online portal, like Amazon or itunes, but the artist will get the lion's share of the revenue. Now they get the mouses share - just a nibble.

  • Pakistani Music (Score:4, Interesting)

    by ryzvonusef (1151717) on Monday November 19, 2012 @04:56AM (#42025081) Journal

    For a sample of great Pakistani music (Legally!), visit Coke Studios:

    http://www.cokestudio.com.pk/ [cokestudio.com.pk]

    As for buying, try the website of a label. One of the biggest labels is FireRecords:

    http://www.firerecords.com.pk/ [firerecords.com.pk]

    I will post more links as I find them.

    The problem is, most of the music in Pakistan is from Indie bands, who are in it more for the passion than money; for those you will have to scour youtube and other fansites.

    • Re:Pakistani Music (Score:4, Informative)

      by ryzvonusef (1151717) on Monday November 19, 2012 @05:04AM (#42025115) Journal

      And before you ask, yes, Pakistan has a thriving music scene, heck, quite a significant amount of popular *indian* music is actually Pakistani singers hired to sing for Indian movies.

      We have everything from soft Classical to hard metal and every other shade in that gradient.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pakistani_music [wikipedia.org]

      One of the funniest moment was when the VICE guide visited Karachi, and as a contrast to the ever present violence, they decide to hit the local music scene...

      http://www.vice.com/the-vice-guide-to-travel/the-vice-guide-to-karachi-full-length [vice.com]

  • by Hrshgn (595514) <rince2001&gmx,ch> on Monday November 19, 2012 @05:04AM (#42025109)

    You could also use streaming services instead of downloading. Most of them come with a mobile client that can be used in offline mode.
    They do pay their artists fractions of a cent for each song listened to.

    To me, this kind of service is clearly the future. It's especially great to discover new music. If you listen to the same 100 tracks all the time, it's probably not cost-effective though.

    Some sites I know:
    http://www.deezer.com/ [deezer.com] (no software necessary, can run in a browser, offline mode with chrome, apps for iPhone and Android)
    http://www.spotify.com/ [spotify.com] (never used, but they are well established in the market)

    iTunes can also do something similar but I don't know their offerings.

  • Is this a joke? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Areyoukiddingme (1289470) on Monday November 19, 2012 @05:35AM (#42025237)

    Seriously, is this a joke? First, the list of countries is a who's who of who ignores copyright. China especially is legendary for pretending the concept doesn't even exist. Second, let's say in some fantasy world, these countries decide to honor copyright, at least of their own artists. Guess what happens? They grow a tumor known as "the Music Industry."

    It's a horrifying system of lies and betrayals where a corporation demands artists sign for many many albums before they will publish the first album, then loads the bill with so much random assorted bullshit that by the end of the first album, the artist owes more to the record company than their record will earn. This cycle is repeated for each album. It includes such creative accounting as astronomical studio fees, ludicrous equipment fees, and "promotion" that never actually happens at all. Then, when the artist is played out even as catalog filler, they are dismissed, never to be heard from again. If they attempt to self-promote, they discover that the record company owns everything they ever did, may even own the name under which they did it, and will not even answer the phone if they attempt to negotiate to perform their own back catalog. Contract law is enforced with draconian measures against the artists, in favor of the record company, in an asymmetrical relationship that only misses literal slavery by a hair's breadth.

    But all of that pales in the face of one monstrous truth: record companies steal more from artists than consumer copyright infringement ever has or ever will, and for one simple reason: record companies steal the proceeds of actual sales from artists. They lie about the accounting, claim with a straight face that the album has never turned a profit, and pocket every dime of the income. Actual money.

    Let me repeat that, because it's something that keeps getting lost in all of Slashdot's attempts to talk about copyright. Record companies steal real money from artists. Enormous amounts of it.

    What do you think pays for those asymmetrical laws, and asymmetrical enforcement? Stolen money. Boatloads of it. What do you think pays for all the propaganda Slashdot is forever at pains to fight? Stolen money. Actual stolen money. Consumer copyright infringement rarely involves money changing hands. The number of dupers who charge money for copies is microscopic. Certainly all downloading, including torrenting, does not involve money. So we all know the RIAA's claims of huge amounts of money "lost" are nothing but creative lies. What we persistently forget is the huge amounts of actual money being paid to them that the artists never see.

    So I ask again, is this a joke? And if not, why do you hate those countries you named? Why would you wish upon them this cultural parasite that the US has? This parasite that is so bloated, so greedy, and so entitled that it has caused international incidents in the pursuit of its own thieving ways. The police (and citizens) of New Zealand have been humiliated and shamed for knuckling under to the demands of this "industry". I put "industry" in scare quotes because you should be scared of anything that has systematically raped culture and those who create it for nigh on a century.

    The answer to your question is this: the artist. ONLY the artist. No other source is legitimate. No reseller, no record company, no middleman, no matter how altruistic they claim to be now, can be trusted. Nor should they be encouraged to develop in places that aren't already subject to this scourge. This is the Information Age. Indeed, I've heard claims that we're already in the post-Information Age. Go straight to the artists. Tolerate no middlemen. They will turn into monsters before your eyes if you give them any money at all. Keep them starved, and ignore them.

    How then do you find artists, you ask? Ask your friends. Seriously. This has always worked best, and always will. A lot of the affect of music on human culture is the shared exp

  • A Word of Caution (Score:5, Interesting)

    by fearofcarpet (654438) on Monday November 19, 2012 @05:55AM (#42025309)

    I stumbled across an indie artist from Uruguay on a late-night radio show and wanted to throw a couple of bucks his way. I went to his band's website and followed the link to a legitimate online retailer for indie artists in Uruguay. The next thing I knew, weird charges started showing up on my credit card--e.g., someone in France started a WoW account, someone in the Ukraine started making a bunch of in-game purchases for online games, etc. Even though it was a "legit" site linked to by the artist with the proceeds going to the artist, either it was a front for stealing credit card numbers or had terrible security. Either way it was a PITA and not at all worth the album.

  • The acts of DOWNLOADING music are not unlawful ("illegal").

    Whether the store benefits the actor DIRECTLY (i.e. he/she gets cash), INDIRECTLY (i.e. he/she may get cash/recognition), CONSEQUENTIONALLY (i.e. he/she will not get cash/ but the featuring of the works in the store will be positive to them) or will be BUTFUCKRAPED (i.e. the store gives the proceeds to RIAA / MPAA and the artists get nothing)... is not something you CAN or ARE able to determine.

    Do your best to Do The Right Thing. While your question

    • by tehcyder (746570)
      If the artist has signed a contract that means he gets nothing from the sale of his works, that just says to me he's a stupid twat who should have paid for a few hours of a decent contract lawyer's time.
  • Between spotify (paid) for streaming, and eMusic.com for DRM free MP3s, I can get about 98% of the music I'm looking for.

    eMusic does NOT roll over unused minutes, I read someplace they use it to cover other artist-related costs (no citation available)

    They have things ranging from megastars like Oumou Sangare from Mali to the Polyphonic voices of Sardinia, and South Asian classical music to Tuvan throatsinging via Shona mbira.

    I have no connection with either company, I just like them both a lot. Not as much

    • by tehcyder (746570)

      They have things ranging from megastars like Oumou Sangare from Mali to the Polyphonic voices of Sardinia, and South Asian classical music to Tuvan throatsinging via Shona mbira.

      No no no, you should be going to Oumou Sangare's Malinese pub gigs, buying Sardinian Polyphonic action figures and starting up your own Tuvan throatsinging group with your hipster buddies down the coffee shop.

      Buying music in the 21st Century is no more than propping up the remains of slavery.

    • by crossmr (957846)

      I used to use Emusic for quite some time. Got quite a bit of indie music there..browsing wikipedia though looks like they sold out in 2010. I think I stopped using them late 2008 or early 2009.

      Not allowing people to redownload tracks is just insulting. They were already raising prices just before I left, cutting subscription downloads by 20-30% or something like that, effectively raising the per track price.

      Their prices are really high now. the top plan which gives 73 downloads a month was like $14.99 when

  • There is actually very little correlation between being "legit" and benefiting the artist. The vry statement "legit and benefit the artist" imply in buying one of the bigest lies of the current system.

  • in brazil you have: http://tramavirtual.uol.com.br/ [uol.com.br] not all the artists but a lot of them very open minded, including some free albums and artists that you may find album at free music archives as well ( http://freemusicarchive.org/ [freemusicarchive.org] ), yet as another example of free legit songs download...
  • If by saying you "want to buy" music you really mean that ONLY downloads are acceptable, I cannot help you at all.

    If you are willing to buy audio CDs, then the following are legitimate sellers for 2 of the countries in your list.
    1) Chinese music can be bought at http://www.yesasia.com./ [www.yesasia.com] I've bought from them for years and they do not sell any bootlegged product. Period. "Chinese music" includes just about anything sold in mainland China plus Hong Kong and Taiwan. There's also http://www.amazon.cn/ [amazon.cn]
  • http://thepiratebay.se/

    Seems legit to me :)

  • I have a better question, which internationally online porn stores are legit?

The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable. -- John Kenneth Galbraith

Working...