Here is some stuff I did in January 2022…

Digested CMU

It’s the music business week digested, because, you know, people are busy – Neil Young v Joe Rogan, Cardi B wins $4 million in YouTuber defamation battle, more COVID cancellations gloom, the CMA’s big streaming market study, and yet more controversy at Spanish collecting society SGAE – check this week’s CMU Digest.

Young v Rogan

So Neil Young’s protest against Spotify and the Joe Rogan Experience is interesting, isn’t it? We published a white paper last year as part of the Friend MTS Building Trust series on the challenges digital platforms face when dealing with harmful content while also wanting to stand up for freedom of speech (and placate both nervous advertisers and big name creators). Our latest report on Young v Rogan is here, complete with a handy link to that white paper.

Digested CMU

It’s the music business week digested, you know, just for fun – the future of the BBC back in the spotlight, FAC’s 100% Venues Directory, Epic back in court against Apple, Hendrix v The Experience, and labels sue in Germany over youtube-dl – check out this week’s CMU Digest on the website here.

A:E Day is back!

Here we go, it’s the very first Artist:Entrepreneur Day of 2022 tomorrow with an electronic music focus. Looking forward to chatting to FAC artist entrepreneurs Aaron Horn, Jay Chakravorty and Katy Pickles – plus some great industry experts. Get some info here.

Eurosonic 2022

While it would have been wonderful to visit Groningen again, it’s still great to be taking part in the online edition of Eurosonic. I’m joining a session tomorrow morning to learn from and chat to the European Music Business Task Force. It’s at 10.30 CET – info here.

Ten years ago…

Ten years ago this week I was busy writing about the Wikipedia blackout staged to protest web-blocking proposals in Congress when, suddenly, without warning, the US authorities shut down MegaUpload. It was quite a week for the music industry’s battle against online copyright infringement. I’ve written some notes about what happened then and the next decade of the anti-piracy war. Given the streaming boom took the record industry back into growth anyway, was it worth it? Read it here.

Digested CMU

It’s the music business week digested – anti-terror rules for venues to be put to Parliament, the Nevermind baby case, Pimco buying music rights, the Dark Horse case, and Lucian Grainge’s start-of-the-year memo – check this week’s CMU Digest here.

Avoiding “Alexa”

Given how many times I set off Alexa while proofreading (aloud) the voice control section of the latest One Step Ahead report, you’d think I’d have remembered to switch off my Echo before starting yesterday’s accompanying webinar. Still, I successfully met the challenge of talking about voice control for ten minutes without saying the word “Alexa” once! Thanks to everyone who tuned in – and if you are a member of IMPALA or an affiliated organisation, don’t forget to download your copy of the report!

Controversial Setlist

In the first edition of Setlist for 2022 we consider which companies are most likely to be involved in music industry controversies this year. Because, as you all know, we love nothing more at CMU than a music industry controversy. So fire up the controversy machine, get organising that petition, file some litigation and – well – maybe for now just listen to the podcast.

Some music stats

As someone who is somehow still using a keyboard with a broken ‘7’ key, I can confirm there were quite a few sevens in the recorded music consumption stats published by the BPI and Official Charts Company this morning. It’s alright though – the ‘7’ key on the number pad works. I just had to exclude any mention of A&R in my article. Anyway, here’s my report on all of those lovely music stats.

Pop Courts Review 2021

So, as threatened, I picked my favourite pop court disputes of 2021. Well, “favourite” probably isn’t the right word. But the most interesting music industry lawsuits of the last year. I’ve picked six in total and have posted some musings about three of them – Epic v Apple, Four Tet v Domino and Astroworld – here.