Unethical Exploitation Of Music

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Music is certainly an entertainment that occupies many people’s life as music is found almost everywhere such as television programs, cafe, advertisements, radio and many more. “I can’t live without music” is the most said quote by almost everybody that listen to music nowadays where we can know that music for a fact plays a significant role in the modern world. However, record labels that are vigorously making and promoting music for the public have been accused of unethical exploitation of artist and their works for taking a bigger share of income. “Unethical” contains the meaning of ‘not morally correct’ and “exploitation” means that ‘the action of making use of and benefiting from resources’, according to the Oxford Dictionaries. If the…show more content…
The deception of record labels can be seen as unethical but the terms are mostly clearly written in the contract whereby artists with no mindful heart will become one of their victim. Record labels in such cases would have a few methods of withholding the artist’s revenue, for example the procedure of getting artist’s album to sell in music retail stores will include the record company liaising with the distributor. The record label will first hand out an amount of fund to let the distributor send out their master recordings of the album for duplication, which is later on shipped to specify music retail stores offering for sales. The tricky part of this process is that music retail stores is able to return the shipments of the album for refund from the distributor, where the refund money is actually from the record label. In the refunding process, the distributor will hold on the refunds before paying it back to the record label which the record label will then retain part of the royalties meant for artist until the full payment from the distributor is made. (Avalon, 2006, p. 46) In this situation, the record label could have changed the numbers on the book to retain more money from the artist who does not know anything about it. The action is thought unethical as the…show more content…
Streaming music is not less heard and it seems to be the primary way for people to consume music nowadays. With the large usage of streaming these days, the copyright holders of the music record such as artist and songwriter are having the issue of underpayment. Artists and songwriters have been claiming that the digital platform of music streaming services have brought their works to more and more consumers, but the revenue received by them does not show the same. It is said that the music streaming services have paid up to 70% of their revenue for copyright holders, but the payouts for artists and songwriters are still low. (BerkleeICE & Rethink Music, 2015, p. 3) A research has been done regarding of where the revenue of music streaming services ended up to be, and it seems that record labels are holding on the largest portion of the revenue gained from them. According to Masnick (2015), record labels get the lion’s share of music streaming revenue with 45.6% of it where songwriters and publishers are sharing 10% and artists are getting 6.8% from the portion. Data which is provided along with the royalty payment is opaque, as an effect the artists and songwriters does not understand the accountings and payments received. (BerkleeICE & Rethink Music, 2015, p. 10) Once the streaming revenue is received by record labels, artists are paid based on their contracts that usually have low

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