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Re: digital Beatles -- the mother of all licensing

Isn't the proof in the pudding?  If iTunes books a large number
of sales, then the deal works.  If it does not attract many
customers, then the deal was not "the mother of all licensing
deals." (Interesting how Saddam Hussein's rhetorical formulation
lives on.)

And the proof is in the pudding:  SOMEONE is buying lots of music
from iTunes, for all its limitations and annoyances.  Should we
assume that the only paying customers on iTunes are over 40?

I think the real point about this deal lies in the network
effects. iTunes is evolving into the de facto means of managing
personal content.  With the Beatles as another attraction, the
gravitational pull to iTunes increases.  iTunes is already being
used by some people to manage scholarly content.  It could
continue to evolve in that direction, even if Apple has little
interest in non-consumer applications.

Joe Esposito

On Tue, Nov 16, 2010 at 2:13 PM, Ken Masters
<kmasters@ithealthed.com> wrote:

> Hi All
> While this is wonderful news, I think, one really has to wonder
> if the people who worked out this strategy are even vaguely
> aware of how people (especially the youth) access digitised
> music today.
> The newer generations pretty much take this approach: why pay
> for a song when simply, by going to Youtube, you can get a free
> video download of it? (e.g. Hey Jude is at:
> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QoBWW3OAhgw)
> After that, there is plenty of free software that can extract
> the audio from the video, and convert it into any known format
> for playing on any known audio device.
> Whereas, if you go the legal route, you have to pay, and then
> may have to jump through any unknown number of legal hoops if
> you decide to buy a new and different audio device, and hope
> that the company doesn't suddenly change its licensing
> conditions after you have purchased the music.
> Perhaps the idea was just to announce the deal, hoping that
> newspapers would pick it up, and run what amounts to free
> advertising. After all, DJs and the like still go the legal
> route (perhaps).
> So, a mother of all licensing deals? "That'll be the day." "I
> don't want to spoil the party" but, "Do you want to know a
> secret?" Perhaps it was, "Yesterday," but now they need some
> "Help." Now I'll just "Let it be." :-)
> Regards
> Ken
> ----
> Dr. Ken Masters
> Asst. Professor: Medical Informatics
> Medical Education Unit
> College of Medicine & Health Sciences
> Sultan Qaboos University
> Sultanate of Oman
> E-i-C: The Internet Journal of Medical Education
>> -------- Original Message --------
>> Subject: digital Beatles -- the mother of all licensing deals?
>> From: "Okerson, Ann" <ann.okerson@yale.edu>
>> Date: Tue, November 16, 2010 6:08 am
>> To: "liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu" <liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu>
>> Just in from the New York Times, forwarded by your moderator:
>> November 15, 2010
>> Apple Strikes Deal to Sell Beatles Catalog Online
>> For the next generation of Beatles' fans, the wait could soon be
>> over.
>> Apple is expected on Tuesday to announce that it has finally
>> struck a deal with the Beatles, the best-selling music group of
>> all time, and the band's record company, EMI, to sell the band's
>> music on iTunes, according to a person with knowledge of the
>> private deal who requested anonymity because the agreement is
>> still confidential. Depending on the terms of the deal, that
>> could mean that, for the first time, customers will be able to
>> buy "Please Please Me," "Hey Jude" or "A Day in the Life" online
>> rather than on a CD and perhaps even as individual tracks. While
>> the move to digital doesn't quite rival the band's first trip
>> across the Atlantic to appear on "The Ed Sullivan Show" in 1964,
>> it is an acknowledgment that online purchases must be central to
>> the music industry's sales strategy.
>> Apple and EMI declined to comment, and representatives of the
>> Beatles and Apple Corps, the band's company (not to be confused
>> with the technology company), could not be reached.
>> <snip>