It is so cool when somebody “gets it”.
I’ve blogged before about the need for the music industry to change its archaic view of copyright infringement. Yet for the past decade or so the strategy has been to fight file sharing in court, send cease and desist orders to podcasters, and fight “illegal” use of their music on YouTube.
Jive Records (Sony Music) finally got it.
The JK Wedding Entrance Video has been viewed by over 15 million people. That puts it up there in Super Bowl territory for the number of viewers. That’s incredible for a video made on no budget by total amateurs. Yet that is the new media world we live in.
The old-school record company tactic would have been to use the legal department to have the JK Wedding Entrance pulled off YouTube. And they would have probably succeeded based on the unauthorized use of Chris Brown’s hit “Forever”. Copyright holders have a deal in place with YouTube to allow them to place a banner on videos using their music, but they aren’t always keen to do that. In the past, they’ve often gone the legal route to attempt to have the videos removed.
But Sony wisely decided that the tide has turned. They realized that there is more profit to be made in joining them than in beating them.
Sony placed a small banner at the start of the video where people can click to download “Forever”. As a result, this year-old forgotten hit rebounded up the charts to become one of the top 5 downloaded songs on iTunes last week. The week before the JK Wedding Entrance video came out, “Forever” had been downloaded 3,000 times. The following week, it had been downloaded over 50,000 times.
Profit there? I think so. Certainly there is far more profit in 50,000 downloads than 3,000 downloads.
And profile? Over 15,000,000 viewers is astronomical.
This is the future of music distribution.