Let It R.I.P.

(Illustration by Alex Fine) GROKSTER TAKES A DIRT NAP Remember Napster? Shawn Fanning’s killer application was like a diamond bullet shot into the blackened heart of the music business, leaving it reeling, and bleeding free music for years. The first reaction of the music biz moguls-men who invariably rely on their tender-aged assistants to send and receive email-was to ignore Napster. Upon realizing somewhat belatedly you could get the Internet on computer nowadays, their second reaction was to kill it-smother it in lawsuits until it asphyxiated in amicus briefs. After kicking Napster to the curb, they sent their goon squad […]

Money Changes Everything

(Illustration by Alex Fine) Meet The New Payola. Same As The Old Payola? Psst. Hey bub. Yeah, you. You wanna know a secret? This is gonna blow your mind: The music business is corrupt. A stinking, rat-infested pirate ship rife with graft, greed, grifting and deceit. Shh. I know, I know. I couldn’t believe it either when I first heard. But don’t tell anyone-especially not Mariah, J. Lo or Audioslave. When the news broke last month that Sony BMG Music Entertainment agreed to pay a $10 million fine and stop buying off DJs if New York state attorney general Eliot […]