The Future Of The Music Industry Essay

2104 WordsMar 30, 20099 Pages
Sanford 1 Russell Sanford Professor Kathy Johnson English Composition 101 November 30, 2007 The clash between the record company and the consumer is nothing new. In 1877 Thomas Edison discovered a way to record sound onto a cylinder for playback and did not require live musicians to perform the music. The effect of the new technology would not be felt until the beginning of the 20th century, when record sales caused a change in payment to musicians. In 1904 the Victor Talking Machine Co. started the royalty payment system and then five years later the Copyright Act of 1909 was passed. The Copyright Act of 1909 stated that two-cent royalties be paid for mechanical reproductions of music through cylinders, recordings and piano paper roles. Then in the 1920’s the radio became popular and a threat to the record industry. The radio allowed people to listen to music that was better quality than live performances and for free. The popularity of the radio dropped record sales from 100 million a year in the late 1920’s to just 6 million in 1932. After years of disputes over royalties the record industry and radio became allies to advertise and promote artists and their and music. Then, in 1951, the Recording Industry’s Association of America (RIAA) was formed after the “Payola” scandal; were record label were found paying radio DJ’s to play their artist’s songs (Jost 998). Sanford 2 During the 50's and 60’s, the record industry fought over the speeds of records and formats of tapes. The cassette eventually became the dominant music format with the help of the Sony Walkman and the experiment of Ray Dolby on noise reduction (Jost 1001). The system aloud the ability to playback and record, which lead to a boom in home recording due to the complaint about high prices for records. Stanley Gortikov, the RIAA President in 1982, complained that the industry

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