I wrote earlier in the week that the AllofMP3 service would be shut down as part of the concessions made by Russia for their accession to the World Trade Organization. Apparently, that is not completely accurate. AllofMP3 is correct in stating that they’re following Russian copyright laws: they pay the required 15% to the Russian Organization for Multimedia and Digital Systems (ROMS). However the record labels have to contact ROMS to pay them. So far, most record labels have not requested royalties from ROMS, fearing it would justify sites such as AllofMP3. So let’s stand back for a minute and look at the situation:
- AllofMP3 sends royalty payments to ROMS.
- Record labels do not request those royalty payments from ROMS.
- Record labels loudly state sites such as AllofMP3 are pirate sites.
That hardly seems fair. Perhaps I’m not getting the entire story (and I’m almost certain I’m not as it’s mired in a lot of ugly legalities and politics) so if anyone has any further info, feel free to pass it along. AOL In the Holiday Spirit Most likely to boost interest and visibility, AOL’s video service will be giving away one free movie download per person this coming Saturday. It all begins at 6am EST and will feature Christmas titles although others will also be eligible. (Spiderman 2 was mentioned.) I’m not one who would actually pay for a download service such as this; if I want to buy movie, I still prefer it on DVD, but you can’t really argue with free. One downside will be AOL’s apparent use of Hi-Q encoding which will probably mean downloading a specialized video player. You be the judge of whether it’s worth the hassle.