Record labels won't share Pirate Bay winnings with artists; they're keeping it for record companies

The record labels that successfully sued The Pirate Bay for millions on the grounds that the network had infringed upon artists' copyrights have announced that it will not share any of the money it receives from the suit with those artists. Instead, the money will be used to bankroll more "enforcement" -- that is, salaries and fees for people who work for the industry association. From TorrentFreak:

According to former Pirate Bay spokesman Peter Sunde, one of the people convicted in the case, this shows who the real “thieves” are.

“Regarding the issue that they’ve already divvied up the loot, it’s always fun to see that they call it ‘recovered money’ (i.e. money they’ve lost) but that they’re not going to give the artists in question any of it,” Sunde told TorrentFreak.

“They say that people who download give money to thieves – but if someone actually ends up paying (in this case: three individuals) then it’s been paid for. So who’s the thief when they don’t give the money to the artists?”

According to Sunde the news doesn’t come as a surprise.

“As far as I know, no money ever won in a lawsuit by IFPI or the RIAA has even gone to any actual artist,” Sunde says. “It’s more likely the money will be spent on cocaine than the artists that they’re ‘defending’.”

Music Labels Won’t Share Pirate Bay Loot With Artists


      1. Ole Missus marry “Will the weaver”
        Willum was a gay deceiver
        Look away! Look away! Look away!

    1. I would say “zing” but I am sure this occurred to…everyone.  Hey, I am even FOR a strong copyright…because we need SOMETHING to protect content creators from thieving corporations & groups like the RIAA.

    1.  Isn’t there some sort of artists’ guild or collective that should be on this already?

  1. Of COURSE they don’t pay the artists! The artists aren’t making them any money; the lawyers are. Which employee would YOU pay? I’m waiting for the record labels to drop the artists entirely so they can focus solely on enforcement.

  2. I really hate the culture of fear that record labels and similar industries have been spreading.  Thinking about it as an aspiring author, sometimes I’m tempted to believe that one download really is one lost sale, but after I take a breath and calm down, I instead want to say to the file sharing crowd, “Go forth, please.  Defeat these legacy players.  Put an end to this sad story.”

    1. I would love to be pirated. It’s a mark that you’re worth people paying attention to.

      1. I’ve been pirated loads of times. Not by someone who wanted to actually steal what I’ve done (ie claim it was theirs or sell it), but people who liked an image or drawing and then shared it, added it to a blog or something. Usually they say who made it, sometimes they don’t know or mention the magazine it was in.
        I guess most illustrators out there have experienced the exact same thing and have reacted in the same way: “awwww cool, thanks!”

        1. One time it isn’t cool is when sites pull whole chunks of your copy and balls-up your SEO, otherwise I’d be flattered so many people like my copywriting enough to sell themselves with it.

          Its a complex game is piracy, far more complex than the law (and enforcement) allows.

  3. Not a surprise really.  I have always wondered why any musician would ever want to go with a mainstream label these days.  Cut them out and you get to keep all of the money you make. 

    1. The caveat is that labels have the means to make you HUGE and rich and famous. Whereas on your own you have to actually rely on being good.

      In many cases it would be ‘Cut them out and keep all the money you don’t make’.

      Same goes for people who hate digital publishers. People seem to think that it’s as easy as not putting your book on Anazin and therefore 100% profit! Sure, 100% profit of nothing because nobody knows your book exists.

      Of course there are exceptions, and really people need to be stepping up to provide more community focussed marketplaces. But running a market place is expensive, so it’s admittedly not all that easy to do.

      Please excuse the iPhone typos.

    2. There’s still some power in the legacy network of promotion, I’m sure. Also, access to concert venues. Didn’t Clear Channel/Live Nation lock up the premier venues in most big cities?

      But mostly it’s probably the prospect of instant wealth, illusory as it is, that an entire industry of vampiric sycophants exists to draw one towards when young, vulnerable, and naive.

  4. Whuffie points. As Cory outlined in “Down and out in the Magic Kingdom”.

    Artists posts music, books on sites, tied to a clearing house for the points–for legal download. You purchase or trade points, to DL media.
    Sites can get points by linking to DL sites. Users can get points by recommending or making their own ‘respect’ tastes, according to the users own ‘station’.  Becoming their own broadcast radio station. Each hit, gives the station points.

    Other media like facebook..etc. become a jump for bling for each jump. 
    Users become the promoters getting ‘points’ for views and respect for promoting artists.
    The artist can cash in via a clearing house for those that purchase ‘points’ to translate points to dollars–via the clearing house for those that purchase points with hard cash.
    Or buy selling specialized album art, signed copies–in a one to many method.

    The current “Rack Jobber” Jukebox  system is way broken for music. Only the top ten get bucks, and the lesser ones get jack.

    1.  too bad you have to use FB auth to get into their beta :(

      you’d think somebody trying to ditch the labels wouldn’t hand their keys to FB… there is OAuth & Mozilla BrowserID if you don’t want to roll your own authentication.

      1. I don’t mind logging in with my twitter account, because it doesn’t have complex demographic information about me, but ye, I NEVER log in with Facebook. Whole process feels creepy and invasive.

        That said wouldn’t your solution require the use of Mozilla?

      2. UPDATE: FB auth is no longer required to apply for Music Kickup beta

         Hi. The reason for starting with FB is two-fold: many services in the music infrastructure (eg soundcloud, pandpage, …) use it and most of the artists we have talked to are fine with it as they already have a presence there. We will open more ways for loggin in (twitter, google, soundcloud, …), but as there are tons of stuff on our todo -list, we must prioritise.
        – Perttu

  5. Every penny earned from RIAA litigation to date has gone to enact more litigation, and none of it has gone to artists. The moral high ground they take, that file sharers are taking money from artists’ pockets, has been a sham from day one.

    1. Let’s be clear what ‘litigation’ means: lawyers.
      to rephrase: Every penny earned from RIAA litigation to date has gone to pay lawyers, and none of it has gone to artists.

      But hey, they have kids to feed and yacht payments to make too. Think of the lawyers!

  6. so when does it cease being the “record industry” and start being the “infringement enforcement industry”?

  7. The court ordered damages to be paid to the rightsholders and artists affected.
    The court needs to ask IFPI why they are ignoring the order of the court, because if they don’t have to follow what the court says why do any of the people found guilty in the kangaroo court have to?
    The money was earmarked not for some education scheme or to enrich nonproducing entities, but to help the rightholders and artists so traumatized by the downloading.   (Yes this is sarcasm, but this was the finding and order of the court).

    While they might have purchased the best justice their money can buy, they still need to be held to what was ordered.  As they have announced they are going to disregard the courts instructions, they need to be hauled into court for fraud and misappropriation of funds.  There should be an audit conducted on their books looking at other “wins” where money was ordered to be paid to the rightsholders/artists that was instead redirected into the coffers of a cartel creation.

    Unless of course the court wants to remove any doubt that there is a high court/low court standard and it is controlled by who has the money not the letter of the law.

  8. As the wonderful Amanda Fucking Palmer and Kickstarter proved, we don’t need these assholes anymore to get our music to the people and actually get paid for it.

  9. Still, any copyright apologists wanting to work with the RIAA/IFPI to make things “better”. Really? Reaaaaaaaallllllllly? Dude, they’re subverting copyright to fund their extortion racket. Please, copyright apologists, just pack up your toys and play in the nice building over there with the padded walls and floors and the friendly people in white that help you into your straightjacket.

  10. Where are the copyright zealots?  I was sure there’d be dozens of people in this thread talking about how we’re thieves just trying to excuse our thievery and how music labels and record companies are sooooo goood to artists, and how we just want them to starve in the street.

    Oh well, they’ll be back in the next copyright thread pretending this never happened and that those of us who oppose rent-seeking monopolies are teh evil.

    1. Sssshhh!  Do you want to be the guy in the zombie movie who turns on the lights, inadvertently letting all the zombies know which house everyone is hiding in?

      1.  Yes, but only after filling the house with accelerant and neck-height razor wire.  Let’s get the tropes on our side for once.

  11. Yeah I know the record company’s treat artists like Shit
    But it would nice if the story came from a news agency  not a torrent site.

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