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Labels Not Only Dinosaurs

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The Beatles refuse to license their music for online sales, with their spokesman saying, “I don’t see any reason for it at all.” This is a very neat statement of the recording industry’s attitude toward the Internet in general until file sharing forced them into the new millennium three years after rest of the world turned the calendar. Self-satisfied smugness may be supportable temporarily when you sit atop the heap, but he who cuts off his nose to spite his face only ends up breathing through his mouth (and stuff).

The BBC reports:

    A spokeswoman for publishers EMI told BBC News Online: “The Beatles have chosen not to put their music online.”

    “I do not know their reasoning.”

    The decision has been taken by the band’s record label Apple Corps, which is owned by Sir Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr and the estate of George Harrison.

    ….Geoff Baker, a spokesman for Apple Corps, told BBC News Online: “We have no plans at the moment to go online.”

    When asked why the former band members were not putting the group’s music online, he added: “I do not think there is any reason for it at all.”

    The Beatles have been traditionally slow to adopt new music formats and were one of the last big-name artists to put their music on to compact discs.

    ….Mr Baker said Apple Corps was unaware of any particular demand for the band’s music to go online and was unconcerned by the numbers of Beatles’ tracks being downloaded by so-called pirates for free.

    ….”As far as I am concerned we are doing very well as it is.”

    He said neither of the band members have expressed any interest in online music.

    “I have never heard Paul McCartney talking about it,” he said.

    The Rolling Stones were also slow to make their back catalogue available online – with the first tracks not accessible until August 2003.

There is no prize for being the last dinosaur into the rowboat.

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About Eric Olsen

Career media professional and serial entrepreneur Eric Olsen flung himself into the paranormal world in 2012, creating the America's Most Haunted brand and co-authoring the award-winning America's Most Haunted book, published by Berkley/Penguin in Sept, 2014. Olsen is co-host of the nationally syndicated broadcast and Internet radio talk show After Hours AM; his entertaining and informative America's Most Haunted website and social media outlets are must-reads: Twitter@amhaunted, Facebook.com/amhaunted, Pinterest America's Most Haunted. Olsen is also guitarist/singer for popular and wildly eclectic Cleveland cover band The Props.
  • frost@work


  • Eric Olsen

    “Not only is Earth flat, but we own it.”

  • frost@work

    and it’s not for sale… at least not online.

  • Eric Olsen

    Yes, you can only buy it in the deluxe “Solar System Package” whether you give a fig about Uranus or not.

  • jadester

    “As far as I am concerned we are doing very well as it is.”
    you seem to have missed this important point. They really don’t need to, and if they’re not after absolutely every last penny they can grab from their songs, and apparently aren’t concerned about Beatles songs being shared illegally, they are well within their rights not to release their tracks online officially.

  • I don’t think ‘rights’ were the point of Eric’s article.

  • Eric Olsen

    Correct P-man, thanks. They have every right not to do anything they don’t want to do reagarding anything they own, and at least they are consistent – unlike the labels – saying they don’t care about file sharing either. And I won’t even say it would be nice to show a sense of responsibility to the business that has made them rich beyond their wildest dreams, but by refusing to play ball, they leave a huge gap in the availability of online music legitimately and flat out encourage the continuation of unauthorized file sharing.

    All I was saying is that it isn’t only the labels that are holding up the future.