Reaction on MySpace MP3 move

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Reaction is coming in on the Myspace decision to sell non-DRM MP3s from unsigned bands registered on the site.

The Register: “We reckon it’s the record companies that should be more woried about MySpace than Apple at the moment, though. If so-called “MySpace phenomena” such as the Arctic Monkeys and Lily Allen continue to emerge through self-promotion and are given unprecedented direct selling access to their MySpace-addicted audience, where do the big guys fit in exactly?”

The New York Times: “… for the four major labels, which must approve each retailer that sells digital versions of their music, the new store could represent a challenge. The MySpace store would let labels set their own prices for songs, which they have complained that iTunes does not let them do. And all of the major labels have put their catalogs into Snocap’s database, which uses an audio fingerprinting technology to prevent people from selling songs they do not own. The MySpace store will sell music in the MP3 format, however, which allows them to be played on the Apple iPod but does not offer any copy protection… For each track it sells, MySpace will charge a band or label a fixed fee of around 45 cents, which it will share with Snocap.”

Business Week: “Unlike iTunes, where all tracks are 99 cents, musicians set their own prices. MySpace and Snocap say they will take a cut just large enough to cover the costs of the materials and provide a tiny profit; the lion’s share of the sale goes directly to the artists. That’s a sweet deal for independent bands like The Format, a Phoenix pop band that participated in a test of the storefront. The band has listed 12 songs for sale at 79 cents each. Already, lead singer Nate Ruess says he has received loads of e-mail from fans saying they appreciate that they can get the music directly online. “We got burned by our old label, and you realize you don’t need these things when you have something like Snocap,” Ruess says.”

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