Podcast: Discussing the Best Concert Venues in Toronto

Determining the best concert venues in any city is going to a be a difficult task, especially in a city such as Toronto, known for its incredible music scene. I selected an article written by Travis Craine titled ‘The Best Live Music Venues in Toronto’ from the website, BlogTO as a starting point in my discussion on the best concert venues in Toronto. The reason I chose this article is because there is no better blog website when it comes to local matters, than BlogTo. Considering this website’s focal point is the city of Toronto, there is no better place to look when finding information on local venues.

Here is the link to the original post written by Travis Craine on BlogTO:

http://www.blogto.com/toronto/the_best_live_music_venues_in_toronto/

This is my podcast discussing the post:

References:

Craine, T. (2010, December 27). The best live music venues in toronto. Retrieved from http://www.blogto.com/toronto/the_best_live_music_venues_in_toronto/

Summary: How People Feel About The Music Industry and Copyright Laws

The issue of copyright laws and the music industry is one which many people feel very passionate about. Music is an art form, which captivates people, and brings out their personal feelings regarding it. In regards to my previous post, Music Industry and Copyright Laws, I received some feedback that I would like to elaborate on.

Mostly, people seem to agree with me in the idea that providing fans with free music, will only increase their chances of buying albums when released. An interesting point brought forth which I did not discuss in my previous point is the increased amount of concerts due to generate more revenue for artists. This benefits both sides heavily. The amount of concerts being showcased is increasing dramatically, as well as the price to attend concerts. People do not seem upset about the increase price of concerts, as they get to see their favourite artists, as well as support them. This is a fair way for artists to generate more revenue, as the fans get what they want in return.

Another comment discusses the amount of exposure artists receive because of the same tool record labels despise, the Internet. This is not only a fantastic point, but incredibly true. Artists can now provide their music on the Internet for anyone to hear, leading to much more exposure. In a sense, artists who complain about piracy can be replaced with those who just want their music to be heard by the masses regardless of profit. There have been countless artists who have become famous due to Internet fame; dare I bring up Justin Bieber? Although this is true, this does not really relate to the issue of Internet piracy.

Although this helps artists get exposure, this does not really stop fans from pirating their music once they have become famous. This is why I believe the way to help resolve this issue is for artists to release free music themselves. The generosity they display by giving away free music will be returned when they release an album through a record label. I think the Internet and music will be intertwined from this moment on. Personally, I think it is a wonderful thing as individuals are able to search for any kind of music they want, rather than having music shoved down their throats via radio stations and television channels. That being said, once people have found artists they appreciate, and listened to the free music given to them, they should support that artists when they sell an album, or do a show in their hometown.

*This response is based off of these comments

Music Industry and Copyright Issues

The new age pirate does not travel on ships, sailing the seas looking for new land to embark, and treasures to steal, but rather exists on the Internet and their treasures include multimedia for which they can share with the masses. As explained by Steinmetz and Tunnell in Under the Pixelated Jolly Roger: A Study of On-Line Pirates “Young people, using computers to download digitized intellectual property, are today’s pirates.” (Steinmetz & Tunnel, 2013, p.60).  The problem with the pirating issue currently affecting the music industry, as stated by Lessing in Ted Talks, is that both sides are reaching an extremist point, expanding the issue and making it more difficult to reach a reasonable solution. The music industry has been given the power to automatically take down any copyright content inappropriately used on the internet, and the young generation which uses the internet so heavily as completely rejected copyright as if it did not exist. These are the extremes currently embarking on the issue of piracy, with a resolution seemingly unattainable.

When I was much younger, and Internet piracy was first occurring, it was an all out war by the music industry on the Internet in order to protect valuable record sales. What followed, was a black eye on the music industry and fans unsympathetic towards the feelings of the artists. Fans felt that the idea of rich music stars complaining about stealing music, resulting in the loss of record sales, was laughable. Therefore, Internet piracy continued and the battle between Internet pirates and the music industry began.

Although it seems impossible for a resolve to be reached in regards to the piracy issue, I would like to provide my own suggestion to help reach a resolution on this issue. As stated by Burkart and McCourt in When Creators, Corporations and Consumers Collide: Napster and the Development of Online Music Distribution  “The Internet provides an enhanced marketplace for record companies, since goods may be copied and transported over the Internet at marginal costs, and unwanted goods may easily be disposed of or delisted.” (Burkart & McCourt, 2003, p.335). The Internet has heavily affected record sales, but at the same time has provided record companies with a tool to distribute new music. Many of my favourite artists have seen this tool, and use it to their full advantage. I believe the way to help both sides meet in the middle on this issue, is regulating the delivery of free music, straight from the artist.

Many artists now provide fans with free albums, straight from their own website. For instance, the rap group Odd Future, has released several albums for free on their website www.oddfuture.com. Providing fans with free music makes them feel appreciated, connecting with the artist. Having provided their fans with free music directly from the source, artists can now sell their major album releases, through their record labels, and use this as a means to convince fans to buy their record. Artists use the free music provided as a way to sympathize to the fans, telling them we have given you all this free music, now please purchase this album in order to balance the situation. I believe this tactic works very well, as when Odd Future released albums through their record company, it sold very well. If you provide fans with free music, they will feel appreciated and in return purchase the music when asked. This is the direction the music industry is leading towards, and I truly believe this will help the two extremist sides meet in the middle.

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*Image is of one of the many FREE releases provided on http://www.oddfuture.com

Reference:

McCourt, T., P. Burkart. (2003). When Creators, Corporations and Consumers Collide: Napster and the Development of On-line Music DistributionMedia, Culture & Society. 25 (3), pg. 333-350

Steinmetz, K., K. Tunnell (2013). Under the Pixelated Jolly Roger: A Study of On-Line PiratesDeviant Behavior. 34 (1), pg. 53-67

Shows I’ve Seen @ The Danforth Music Hall

This is a video montage dedicated to all the phenomenal performances I have witnessed at the Danforth Music Hall. One aspect I really like of this venue, as you will see in the video, is the range of performers at Danforth. They include superstars, such as Rihanna, to up and comers, such as Kim Churchill. Enjoy, and marvel at the awesomeness that is my job.

*Photos are courtesy of @JerryAbramowicz – House Photographer for Danforth Music Hall (Give him a Follow!)

Summary: Internet Producers and Copyright Laws

This blog will be a response to the comments on my article ‘Internet Producers and Copyright Laws’. A comment which I received that I would like to address firstly, is in regards to the strong presence of copyright laws on youTube. Yes, youTube does have strong copyright laws, and they continue to strengthen their presence on youTube. When youTube first arrived on the internet many years ago, an individual could find any type of videos they were looking for, regardless of copyright.

A prime example I look to is videos from the popular show Saturday Night Live. When youTube first arrived, I specifically remember searching throughout youTube for various SNL sketches, and would consistently be able to find the sketches I was looking for, regardless of year. This can no longer be done on youTube as they do not have the copyright to broadcast SNL sketches. This displays the growing presence of copyright laws on youTube. At first, youTube was counterintuitive in regards to copyright laws, unwilling to ‘play fair’ and simply sought out to provide its users with the videos they wanted by any means necessary. The growth of youTube however, has put this to an abrupt end.

Another rebuttal I received that I would like to address is in regards to my involvement in fantasy sports. Some interesting points were brought forth, mainly that there seem to be little to none copyright battles in regards to fantasy sports. I believe the reason for this is that fantasy sports delivers more wanted attention to the sports, and therefore are gladly welcomed by major sport organizations such as the National Football League, among others. Whereas a website like youTube attracts attention from DVD sales, considering if there were no copyright laws you could just watch the videos on their website, fantasy sports attract more attention to the main product. When you participate in fantasy sports, you must consistently watch the games in order to be effective. Therefore, fantasy sports simply attract more viewers and increase ratings, pleasing the major sports leagues.

What I’ve learned this week is that not all people are aware of the strict copyright laws associated with youTube. This is because youTube at first was considered an underground website where people were able to upload anything, regardless of copyright laws. YouTube when on to become a massive worldwide website, and therefore copyright began to rear its ugly head, forcing the website to deal with the strict laws. All content on youTube is now controlled and monitored, and therefore must abide by the correct copyright laws.

Internet Producers and Copyright Laws

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The Internet is a force, which is prevalent in today’s world, and will continue to be so in my lifetime. The Internet brings us many tools to use within our daily lives in addition to providing us with various new avenues for entertainment. An aspect of the Internet, which continues to grow, is that of ‘Internet communities’. Internet communities involve a webpage centered on a certain product or topic, providing a means to communicate with others and distribute your message allowing for rebuttal from your peers. This blog will focus on my own involvement on producing and consuming within Internet communities and what leads me to do so. In addition, I will look specifically into youTube, and demonstrate how they are able to be so affective in the face of strict copyright laws.

There are various different avenues in which an individual can contribute to internet communities as a producer or a consumer. There are thousands of websites one can look to in order to contribute, and have their technological voice be heard amongst the depths of the World Wide Web. Personally, the avenue where I consider myself a ‘producer’ is in regards to sports. I am an avid sports fan, and am involved heavily in the aspect known as ‘Fantasy Sports’. Fantasy sports are located on various different websites, and involve the creation and competition of a sports roster amongst your peers. The producing aspect that I partake in is through various chat rooms and forums dedicated to Fantasy Sports. I demonstrate to users my strategies when drafting a team, players I am fond, amongst many other topics all centered on fantasy sports.

The reason why I choose fantasy sports as an avenue to produce material for the Internet, is simply because it is my strongest topic area, and I have an immense passion for it. When I ‘produce’ material for fantasy sports, I am rarely met with negative feedback but merely friendly rebuttals regarding my choices, mostly positive. This is what drives me to produce online content, as it is a topic area I could discuss for hours on end, and it brings me joy.

The topic of producing on ‘online communities’ cannot be discoursed without discussing the biggest online community of all, youTube. The largest online community on the Internet today is youTube, as it receives millions of hits a day, amongst thousands of content uploaded daily by users. Although youTube is a peer produced Internet community they also “introduce new ways to regulate and deny access to content under the guise of enforcing copyright protection.” (Hilderbrand, 2007) Therefore, it is an avenue which encourages peer production, but at the same time heavily protects copyright laws. Individuals can only produce material on youTube if it obeys copyright laws, if not, the material will be removed instantly.

Considering they still abide by the strict copyright laws, youTube still finds a way to be highly productive on the Internet, receiving immense amounts of user produced material daily. The reason why youTube can be so prevalent in the face of restrictive copyright laws is because “video-sharing sites are dominated by the sense of exhibitionism including addressing the audience directly, gags and novelty acts and putting the world on display by documenting significant events.” (Rizzo, 2008) The reason youTube remains so prevalent in the face of copyright laws, is there are many other avenues it addresses which speak to peoples Internet desires. The users consumers enjoy seeing videos of exhibitionism that relate directly to the audience. Therefore, youTube continues to be amongst the worldwide leaders in Internet avenues, which allow its users to produce material for the world to see. Although users must still abide by strict copyright laws when uploading material, they are able to address many of the consumers desires without hindering any copyright laws, allowing them to remain prevalent within the Internet community.

References:

Hilderbrand, L. (2007). ‘Youtube: Where Cultural Memory and Copyright Converge’. Film Quarterly. Vol. 61, No. 1, 48-57.

Rizzo, T. (2008). ‘YouTube: the New Cinema of Attractions SCAN’ Journal of Media Arts Culture. Vol 5, No. 1, Online Journal.

*Image Courtesy of Purchased Microsoft Office for Mac.