Sunday, March 1, 2009

Letter to Wall St Journal

If a website such as youtube, myspace  can put a counter on its site which counts the number of hits , it should be fairly easy to set up an automated payment system to owners of copyrighted material .  My website sells downloads automatically and payments are administered via paypal without me lifting a finger . 

I recently cowrote a song with Madeleine Peyroux and Larry Klein which she recorded on her new Cd " Bare Bones " . 

Watching her perform it online on the Wall St Journal , I thought she had done an awesome job of playing it and singing it , but wondered if I would ever see a penny from this particular performance . 

Musicians here will argue in the local Cafe about the plight of Israel or the Iraq war , but when their own rights to remuneration are being eroded they seem strangely mute to me .  Why isn't there a greater effort by musicians, journalists , actors etc to get together and force people who sell "streaming" entertainment to pay to use it ? I would posit the thought at this point that in the near distant future ( perhaps 2 years away) , it will be useless to "own" any piece of digital art . All will be available free as a stream online and most people in the developed world will have 24/7 access to anything on their iphone or equivalent . I believe we are in a "now or never" situation .  I think it's time to act . 

Sincerely Yours 
Sean Wayland 

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