YouTube pressures independent music labels in Amazon/Hachette-like way
June 18, 2014 | 3:21 am
A major electronic media company and its suppliers face contentious contract renegotiations, with the company making it harder for its customers to find the supplier’s products. It’s a story familiar from the last few weeks…except this time I’m not talking about Amazon and Hachette.
The BBC reports that YouTube is set to remove music videos by major independent artists including Adele, Arctic Monkeys, and Radiohead because their indie music labels aren’t able to reach terms with YouTube over its new music subscription service. While content from channels such as Vevo will remain available, exclusively-licensed videos such as acoustic sets or live performances could be taken down.
You even see complaints in the article that YouTube is trying to “strong-arm” labels, much like the complaints Amazon is bullying Hachette. And remember, YouTube is part of Internet behemoth Google, one of relatively few Internet-based companies who can be said to be even bigger than Amazon.
But somehow, I have a hard time believing that we’re going to see quite as much media attention given to complaints from independent music label partisans as we are from the defenders of Hachette. After all, books are all cultural and stuff, but who listens to that kind of music anyway?