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back to article Jean Michel Jarre: Je voudrais un MUSIC TAX sur VOTRE MOBE

Smartphone owners should pay hundreds of dollars to the music industry, wrinkly French synth twiddler Jean Michel Jarre has said. Without the ability to play music, Jarre argued, the gadget wouldn't be worth as much as it currently is. “We should never forget that in the smartphone, the smart part is us creators,” Jarre told …

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Anonymous Coward

Earwig 'O, again

Think I'll nip over to TPB and acquire his entire discography.

Then delete it.

:)

Actually, all I've got of his is 'Oxygene', which was paid for. And I don't have a Smart-phone. But, well, you know...

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Pirate

Re: Earwig 'O, again

Couldn't agree more.

I have a a few of his albums on tape, which I was considering replacing with actual store bought CDs in order to put onto my phone. After this brain-fart of his, I might just go to TPB instead. I've paid for them once, was considering paying for them a second time, and now he expects me to pay for them a third time just because I decide to have them on my phone, instead of carrying around a phone, and an out-dated walkman?

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Oh, my!

Somebody, bring the oxygen - we have a case of severe equinox here!

"The ethical argument is that it is unfair for smartphone owners who don’t use the device for music to pay the music industry."

There is a far more important (for me) ethical argument here - it is even more unfair to expect me to pay the music industry for playing music on my phone because I'VE ALREADY PAID THEM to get the music in the first place! Mostly by buying the CDs and, occasionally, MP3s.

Jean Michel should really shut up and go back to his beloved music industry and shake more money out of them, because the reason why artists are paid so little is that the bunch of well-known intermediaries in the industry steal all their money!

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Re: Oh, my!

I agree that music creators deserve to get paid fairly for their creations. Unfortunately the internet has never mastered micropayments, and instead Spotify et al follow vague and uninspiring business models that end up short-changing the creators. Mind you, even with CD sales, the original artist or composer, especially with classical music, can sometimes get a pittance (a few pence per CD) due to greedy music societies taking a much bigger big chunk.

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Re: Oh, my!

If he thinks music on the internet is free and wants to impose a 'gadget' tax, then wouldn't that *actually* make all the music on the internet free*

*at point of download.

This is a very strange point of view, because he's also implied that I can download all his music for nowt (since that is his current expectation).

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Re: Oh, my!

On the other hand, in many countries, like here in Germany, there is already a levy on CDs, external hard drives, DVDs and printers!

I use my CDs and DVDs for burning backups of my own work and the printer is used for printing documents I've created. Applying for a payout didn't lead anywhere. :-(

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Bod

Re: Oh, my!

"On the other hand, in many countries, like here in Germany, there is already a levy on CDs, external hard drives, DVDs and printers!"

I think we would in the UK also, if it wasn't for the fact private copying is actually illegal in the UK full stop and no amount of talk to change it to a fair use law has made any difference.

Though oddly, CD-R Audio discs were still on sale in the UK complete with a levy in the price and yet still copying was illegal, so why on earth pay a premium for CR-R Audio discs if you are only going to be using them for your own original material? Except those fools who bought the hardware that would only record to them. So basically paying a tax to the studios to make your own music.

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Terminator

"Bring the oxygen - we have a case of severe equinox here!"

More of a revolution over some magnetic fields, if you ask me.

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Re: Oh, my!

speaking of oxygen, it's free, it's everywhere, and since Jean breathes, he can pay for everyone's oxygen! Silly? Just as silly as his fantasy.

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Pirate

Right, off to Music Magpie to sell my Jean Michel Jarre CDs - he's not charging me multiple times for his music every time I upgrade my hardware.

What a really, really, really stupid idea.

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Velv, some say it's a really stupid idea, others say it's French. Jarre’s logic is based on socialist ideology. Rather superimposing a new tax than being innovative.

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Unhappy

Socialist??

Socialist? You sure of that? For me it looks just like the opposite thing. Siphoning money from the public directly into private hands, a fucking TAX going straight into the pockets of those companies and private organizations. And an unjust tax, to boot.

Sadly, that last part -the unfair tax- is habitually endorsed by most of the political spectrum, Left, Right and Centre.

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You must be teabagger

Because someone who has their head on straight wouldn't confuse this very clear attempt at get-more-money-at-any-cost attitudes and statements with socialism.

There is no common good here. This is an already rich guy who wants more more more. If you want to claim any kind of -ism, then capitalism is the one you're looking for.

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Alert

Re: You must be teabagger

Actually, this exchange here explains so much about why a lot of Americans hate "Socialism".

This kind of thought: "Tax everybody and funnel the funds into the hands of a few to distribute 'rightly'." is endemic to our Democrat party (the Republicans just want to tax everybody, without any pretense of Fairness). Sadly the distribution entity usually forgets the 'rightly', and occasionally forgets the 'distribute'.

The politicians call this practice Socialism when it goes wrong. They then say that it's evil and we shouldn't do that, and they would never stoop to 'Socialism'. They then kill (or rename) the program that was 'Socialist'... and do it again.

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Why ?

Why should I be forced to pay the music industry ANYTHING when all i'm doing

is making phone-calls and sending/recieving texts ?

It's the same thing with harddrives and optical media, just because you CAN store music on them

shouldn't mean I should have to pay anyone just because I MIGHT be...

And besides... what percentage of those millions do the artists themselves actually get ?

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What's french for "cobblers"?

> Without the ability to play music, Jarre argued, the gadget wouldn't be worth as much as it currently is.

I'm on my third smartphone, now. I can safely say that the hassle of carrying around a pair of earbuds, spending time disentangling them any time I want to use them and then squinting at a sunlit screen to try to see what music is on the device long-ago became a chore. I haven't felt the need to have every moment filled with "entertainment" for decades and therefore can say that the musical abilities of a smart (or dumb) phone mean nothing to me.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: What's french for "cobblers"?

"a gadget that doesn’t play music isn’t worth very much. In fact, it might be unsellable"

I'm in agreement with @Pete 2 - this is utter bollocks. I don't have a single music track stored on my phone, despite its pretty decent credentials (apparently) as an MP3(*) player.

For portable music, I use an old iPod (2nd Gen) with a decent set of headphones, which I only pack if I know I'm actually likely to get a chance to use them.

(* The inaccurately named definition of 'digital music player', which can in fact play everything including Ogg-Vorbis)

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Re: What's french for "cobblers"?

Without The Register, my smartphone wouldn't be worth as much to me as it currently is...

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Re: What's french for "cobblers"?

Hear, hear.

It would also help if the noise that passes as music today was, in fact, musical.

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Consignment of geriatric shoe menders

Cobblers is cockney rhyming slang (cobblers' awls), so the equivalent French phrases are:

C'est de la couillonnade.

Tu racontes des couilles.

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Re: the equivalent French

Trust the French to never use one word when they can use four.

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Whenever I hear "creator", there is an entitled idiot talking.

"We should never forget that in the smartphone, the smart part is us creators"

Frog explosion imminent!!

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"a gadget that doesn’t play music isn’t worth very much" - Cobblers!

What makes the things useful and worth paying for is the internet connectivity and all that that enables. Without internet then the smart phone is indeed not worth the extra money. Playing music is a very minor feature from my point of view (and from my observation, that of everyone else I know).

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Stop

Re: "a gadget that doesn’t play music isn’t worth very much" - Cobblers!

No, not really. I admit that I do at least use the internet on my smartphone for email and browsing occasionally, but only when I'm around Wi-Fi (as opposed to watching or playing anything on it, which I just don't do) - other than that, none the "smart" stuff I'm quite fond of has anything to do with either music or the internet. I do use GPS (with maps stored offline), address book, tasks and calendar (synced with my home PC only), an expense manager (hell no, not one of the "cloud synced" ones), various calculators / unit converters (duh...), sky charts to identify shiny dots in the sky (fully offline app), various terminals / HTPC remotes (on my LAN - wireless, sure, but nothing to do with the internet)... do I really need to go on?

Oh, and Monsieur Jarre - "smart" in "smartphone" only means that it has an OS that lets you install your own stuff anyway - sort of a meaningless distinction since a "feature phone" that lets you install the right Java apps (if they exist) can potentially do everything a "smart" one can... so shall those start paying too?

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Re: "a gadget that doesn’t play music isn’t worth very much" - Cobblers!

True, there are uses other than internet stuff. In essence a smart phone has most of the functionality that a PC provides, and different people use different features. But for sure, listening to music isn't by any means the primary purpose of them.

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"The second objection is more practical: levies just don’t raise very much money. Apple sold 51 million iPhones in the last three months of 2013. Even with a levy of £23.60 per iPhone, that would have only realised £200m for labels, publishers and artists. It would make more sense to grow the market for Deezer, Spotify and the other dozens of me-too streaming services."

Am I being dense, not unusual, but at 23.60 per phone that means in excess of 1.2 billion raised on 51 million iPhones. Personally I'd be annoyed by the levy as I use my phone to text and make phone calls, I like my music to have some fidelity.

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Maths

No your maths is correct, but you forgot about the costs of collection/distribution of the levy or "gravytrain" as some call it.

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Anonymous Coward

what a silly chap

in other news, some people get to travel on the tube free of charge, so let's put a levy on every single person in London whether they use it or not to cover the costs of the free travel (even though others pay) ;-)

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Re: what a silly chap

Part of the tube is actually funded out of general taxation.

Personally, in London I think that the regular TFL services (bus, tube) should be free for residents, paid for out of increases in council tax.

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Facepalm

Re: what a silly chap

Hey, don't do that! I misread "regular TFL services (bus, tube)" as "FTL" - faster than light - and my brain promptly crashed right there...

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(Written by Reg staff)

Re: Re: what a silly chap

"TFL FTL" has an entirely different (and more accurate) meaning in my mind...

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Anonymous Coward

I've got dozens of albums on my phone...

Every single one paid for, thank-you very much.

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So, he's asking smartphone manufacturers to make a payment to musicians for music that is not on their devices, but might, potentially, by some users, be added later on.

What could possibly be flawed with that?

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FAIL

How much ?

And how much money will actually go the the artists themselves ?

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Anonymous Coward

Jean Michel Jarre

one of the least bootlegged artists on the internet complains about artists not getting enough from the punters ... oh well, he's got his name in the papers. Now he can **** off.

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FAIL

How much ?

And just how much money will actually go to the artists themselves ?

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Anonymous Coward

Mr Jar

I would not pay a penny to listen to _your_ music. That is all.

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Yes, very creative. No new album for 7 years and the last one was a remaster, recycling old glories. Alimony fees proving too much for your finances, eh Jean-Michel?

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Anonymous Coward

The other thing is if you're paying a blanket "music tax" why would you ever buy music, you've already paid for it. Everything on my devices is either purchased through the store, ripped from my own cds or is foreign music I can't get through digital stores and physical media + shipping + tax would set me back £20 for a single and £50 for an album. So why should western music companies see any more of my money than he money they get for my legal purchases?

In short, No.

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Go away JMJ - Your time is up.

So after you have bought your music, legally with all the various taxes included, you can then get charged a second time in order to listen to it.

JMJ - Un petit homme qui doit être classé dans les ranges de gens pathétiques.

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The Oxygene of publicity...

JMJ - another struggling musician who's living in poverty due to music piracy.

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Re: The Oxygene of publicity...

Damn - I wanted to do that joke! Have an upvote!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The Oxygene of publicity...

There is nothing wrong with older retired artists commenting about the state of the industry. He is at least in the position where he can comment, the musicians who aren't able to make ends meet spend all of their time doing the day job, which is often something shitty that they can leave at the drop of a hat, in order to go on tour or do a gig across the other side of the country.

Personally, I don't think device taxation is the way forward, but seeing how many musicians live with very little pay and even less if they live on royalties makes me wonder how devalued art has become.

And: No, doing gigs isn't the answer, contrary to popular belief, it pays very little until you're playing to multiple thousands. The lifestyle is crippling and that's not talking about booze and drugs, it's late nights, long days and long distance travelling all while separated from your family.

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Re: The Oxygene of publicity...

> And: No, doing gigs isn't the answer, contrary to popular belief, it pays very little until you're playing to multiple thousands. The lifestyle is crippling and that's not talking about booze and drugs, it's late nights, long days and long distance travelling all while separated from your family.

Sorry, gigs are the answer, or at least part. If you're good enough then you can make enough money to live. If you're not, then you can't. That's life.

I'm a programmer during the day and a musician in my spare time. I would swap those roles at the drop of a hat if I was good enough and committed enough. The reality of working though is you need to do something that you can earn from every day. That's called work, and it pays the bills.

The professional musicians that I know that do earn enough live fairly comfortably. They perform in various groups and supplement their income by teaching privately. Problem is, when people talk about musicians, they think of the latest flight-by-night rock "sensation". That's not career-making stuff, never was and never will be.

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Re: The Oxygene of publicity...

So... exactly how much of this JMJ tax do you think YOU would see???

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Re: No, doing gigs isn't the answer...

...contrary to popular belief, it pays very little until you're playing to multiple thousands

That's not what I was told when I asked members of Fairport Convention whether playing to small crowds all over America was paying their bills.

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Re: The Oxygene of publicity...

Personally, forget about the oxygen of publicity. JMJ should be denied the oxygen of oxygen

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Re: The Oxygene of publicity...

making a living is tough for us all.

if you don't like playing gigs, you could always get a job at a cheese sandwich factory.

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The problem with generic levies/taxes, is that you don't know who's getting the money. Is the money really going to the niche artist you like (that everyone else hates) or the big-name artists who already have way too much money? Or is it just going to the pockets of the record industry fat-cats?

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Absolutely. How much of this goes to The Indelicates? How much to Priscilla Hernandez? How do they choose?

I remember this going on with the RIAA actually, they were collecting fines from the likes of napster to compensate artists being pirated, then indies got in touch with proof they'd been pirated on napster and asking for their share. You can guess the RIAA's response.

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