Dean Kulash, the lead singer for the band OK Go, has a great editorial in the NYTimes today, describing why DRM systems are bad for artists:
Tech-savvy fans won't go to the trouble of buying a strings-attached record when they can get a better version free. Less Net-knowledgeable fans (those who don't know the simple tricks to get around the copy-protection software or don't use peer-to-peer networks) are punished by discs that often won't load onto their MP3 players (the copy-protection programs are incompatible with Apple's iPods, for example) and sometimes won't even play in their computers.
Conscientious fans, who buy music legally because it's the right thing to do, just get insulted. They've made the choice not to steal their music, and the labels thank them by giving them an inferior product hampered by software that's at best a nuisance, and at worst a security threat.
As for musicians, we are left to wonder how many more people could be listening to our music if it weren't such a hassle, and how many more iPods might have our albums on them if our labels hadn't sabotaged our releases with cumbersome software.
Yeah, that sums it up. I'm glad to see that at least the musicians see that *they* are the ones who get hurt out of this p2p witch-hunt. The record companies are in it only for themselves, and if the bands think they are being looked out for, they need to study up on what is going on.
Should the bands call for the end of record labels?