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RE: Music companys to pay up

Michael, that's about $32,000 on average, apiece. It didn't say now much
of it the lawyers got. and it goes back to the new releases on CD's of the

I would guess some of the bigger stars and their heirs got more.

Given that artist's selling, according to the article, up to 8 million
copies are still "in debt" to the companies, sounds to me like it's as
screwy a business as the accounting schemes publishers use to distribute
overhead "equally" on each new journal.(and your share of the heating bill
comes to....)

Yes, it also sounds to me like accounting was the point of the case-or
rather improper accounting. Oh, hey, that's the problem with Worldcom too.
Only it took twenty years and lawsuits to catch Universal out. The article
suggests its the tip of an iceberg, that music companies were ignoring
royalties to former stars and their heirs. . Keep the stuff out of the
public domain longer and force the people who created the stuff to sue to
get paid. Nice job if you can get it.


-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Spinella
To: rmiller@hwwilson.com; liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu
Sent: 6/29/02 12:34 AM
Subject: RE: Music companys to pay up

I certainly don't want to defend anyone for bad behavior, but has it
occurred to anyone else that $4.75 million spread across 161 "stars" for
"decades" of incorrectly calculated royalties actually amounts to a fairly
modest sort of underpayment, given the size of the revenues received and
royalties paid in that industry? Worldcom underreported its expenses by
$3.8 BILLION over TWO years, and that amount was more than the company's
total net profits for those two years. The Enron scandal also involved
billions of dollars, and clearly material misrepresentations of the
company's financial situation, effecting thousands and thousands of
employees and investors. Surely these are far more material breaches of
faith than this little bitty payment by the record companies seems to
imply. I don't think this settlement suggests even as much as a 1/10th of
1 percent per year 'theft'. Again, I really don't defend theft or bad
behavior whatever the degree - but surely these are not compa! rable
situations, are they?

Mike Spinella