Thursday, July 1, 2010

Where Have All The Videos Gone?

I’ve been a bit of a dilemma lately, a quandary if you will. For the last few months I have been doing this thing I call the Friday Flashback where I find some music videos from an older group (usually from the 80s) and give some info on them, a little history of the band and their lineup as well as a link to their website and so forth. I know it’s not a terribly original name or idea but it made me happy and it was also a nice way to highlight a band or musician especially if they haven’t been in the public eye a great deal lately.

For the past few weeks I really haven’t done it other than doing it a day late for one week basically because it’s getting hard to find the music videos that I want to showcase. Either the original video is nowhere to be found or it is unable to be embedded on a site. Now this strikes me as being this way for one or two reasons. First, since the record company originally paid for the video they now control the rights to it and are denying people the ability to use the video because it is their property. I have absolutely no doubt in my mind that this is happening a great deal as history has shown us how much the music labels love to control things with an iron fist. Second, the band itself is requesting the host site (Youtube, etc) that said video be unavailable to be embedded.

Either way this seems to me as being an exceptionally stupid way to go about business. Now I can understand a band or label not wanting some rather unsavory characters (excluding themselves) to be able to take the music videos and say, put them onto a dvd and sell them without the copyright owners having a say in it or making any money from it. This is not what I am talking about at all. What I’m referring to is allowing bloggers to embed the videos for other people to see. It's really a rather simple idea.

Look, it’s free publicity and that’s great whether it’s a group still together recording and/or touring or a group that is no longer together. Anytime the group puts out a new record or goes on tour untold numbers of fans can and do blog about their memories of past concerts or songs, what the music meant to them at some point in their lives and what kind of an impact it had on them personally. They write about how they feel about the new music, their thoughts on the most recent concert or how now their kids are getting turned onto the band and are going to the concerts with them. If a band is no longer together it’s a great way for fans to not let the music fade into obscurity or for new fans to find the music.

To try and lock everything down and remain in total control in this case does more harm than good. It denies the fan or potential fan the ability to fully support and show their love for their lifetime favorite bands and music. As long as the fan in question isn’t trying to make a buck off of it then why not allow them a little freedom in praising you? The world is changing rapidly and what was done decades ago is no longer applicable in these new times. We can either adapt and change with the times or stay as we are and slowly disappear as we no longer remain relevant. The choice is ours to make.

So, will I continue the Friday Flashback? Only time will tell. If it continues to be a chore looking for the videos then what will be the point of it all? I cannot continue to spend hours trying to find a video that I can embed no matter how much I like the song, band or artist. The numbers don’t work when you factor in raising a family, working full time and taking care of a house. There are never enough hours to do everything as it is and I don’t need to subtract any of the small time away that I get to work on the blog. We shall see is all I can say.

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