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NY Times:Unknown Musicians Finding Payoffs Through the Internet Jukebox

Jul 21, 2000, 01:03 (3 Talkback[s])

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"Even as the recording industry tries to stamp out the practice of distributing copyrighted music for free, thousands of musicians are happily using MP3 technology to give their music away."

"As the recording industry and commercial artists like the heavy metal band Metallica try to stamp out the unauthorized distribution of copyrighted music in the form of computer files known as MP3's, tens of thousands of aspiring rock stars are happily using the technology to give their music away -- and more than a few are beginning to see some payoff...."

"MP3.com, the largest repository of free music on the Web, said it receives more than half a million visitors who listen to over a million items each day. The company is perhaps best known for its legal dispute with the record industry over adding thousands of copyrighted songs to its database, a case that it is in the process of settling. But its revenues are generated from advertising sales based on visitors who come almost exclusively to hear unsigned artists."

"Last November it began to pay all artists, signed or not, a small fee each time someone listens to one of their songs. And particularly since May, when the company expanded its monthly Payback for Playback pool to $1 million, it has become a source of significant revenue for those at the top of the MP3.com heap, and an incentive for the 75,000 or so others to promote their music."

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