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02 July 2006

Why Crappy Music is on the Radio

...and confidential emails on line
 

I'm reading some of these emails with the nice disclaimer like "the information in this transmission may contain privileged and confidential information. It is intended only for the person(s) named above..." - The messages have not been mailed to me, but it's perfectly legal for me to read them. They are also interesting to read, though I get a bit stirred up by them. How comes? They are published as part of a court decision, where Sony was ordered to pay ten million dollars (pocket money to them). Sony got caught bribing radio stations to play "their" artists, to get those records into the mainstream feeding frenzy. Some thoughts come up with this...


First of all, like this post titled Sony Busted In Payola Scandal points out,

"Is it any wonder why that fantastic fantastic fantastic band you love that is on a small indie label doesn't get airplay on the radio? How can it compete when big labels are bribing with computers, flights to concerts, digital cameras, and let's not forget CASH."
To me there is another spin to that. There is some music on the radio that is so bad, so sugary cheap, one wonders how it ever came to peoples attention. The answer is in quotes like these:
"...it cost us over 4000.0 to get Franz on WKSE..."
"You have room for a money record this week?"
"In return for this promotion Donnie Michaels will put Kelly's "Stole" into a subpower rotation 5-6 spins a day..."
(Oh and in case you wondered, that reference to "Franz" means "Franz Ferdinand", one of the bands that are in the hype right now. So how did they get into the hype? Just by making good music...? Or do 4000$ to a single radio station make any difference?)

Next thought: Dear company people, if you pull off stuff like that which you *know* is illegal[1] and or against any decent sense of moral[2], why don't you at least *try* and show some sense? At least make a bit of an effort to encrypt at least the company internal mails. I don't think it would have gotten very far, since those mails probably would have been subpoenaed at some point (or leaked out unencrypted through stupidity etc.), but when you marketroids look at your sloppy orthography and grammar exposed in a publicly hosted pdf file, it should give you some thoughts. Hey, lots of companies use S/MIME nowadays, it fits in with the corporate thought-police. Who could resist a phrase like "centrally controlled certification authority"?

Another afterthought: Some of the mails come from a blackberry account. Maybe just maybe this isn't such a good thing for doing unlawful things, as it stores your mails on a server which you and your corporate lawyers don't have direct control over. Try GMail next for extra laughs.

The link to the PDF file in that post is wrong, the proper address is: http://www.oag.state.ny.us/press/2005/jul/payola2.pdf

[1]: It's not the first time a record company has been busted for stuff like that.
[2]: I know, I know, at this point (after stuff like the root kit), nobody expects to find any morals in relation to Sony.

Posted by betabug at 11:39 | Comments (0) | Trackbacks (0)
ch athens
Life in Athens (Greece) for a foreigner from the other side of the mountains. And with an interest in digital life and the feeling of change in a big city. Multilingual English - German - Greek.
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