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Sony Gets Hip, Green Day FAIL and Aerosmith Scratch-Offs

By Staff · May 13th, 2009 · Minimum Gauge



During a recent interview, Sony CEO Howard Stringer made some comments that suggested maybe some in the corporate music world might just be ready to enter the 21st century. The music industry has become a bit of a joke for its out-of-touch reaction to technological developments, and it has suffered financially because of it. But Stringer, in talking to Nikkei Electronics Asia, admitted that if Sony (which controls stakes in several music labels and, of course, is a leading electronics maker) had gone with “more open” technology, they could have had a chance to be more successful in the music market, perhaps even beating Apple. But our favorite quote is a throwback to that old business adage, “the customer is always right.” “We can no longer say that we’re right and our customers are wrong,” Stringer said. “We can’t build only what we want to build.” After years of the RIAA’s intimidation tactics and even government interference with technology, it’s a refreshingly honest reassessment. Who knew that threatening to sue your customers was a bad business decision?



When a band puts out an astonishingly successful political album like Green Day’s American Idiot, a screed against the direction the country was going at the time, you’d think they’d be the last to do favors for some of the conservative world’s most powerful players.

That’s why pierced eyebrows were raised when the band decided to give the exclusive rights to stream their latest album, 21st Century Breakdown, to England’s The Sun, which is owned by mad genius Rubert Murdoch, the man responsible for Fox News and its “fair and balanced” rhetoric. For a band whose last album’s title track was essentially a dressing down of unfair and imbalanced conservative media, it seems like a hypocritical, contradictory move (like all of those poor people who vote against their best interests after being brain-washed by Fox and their ilk). That’d be like Sir Mix-A-Lot advertising for underwear that makes women’s butts look smaller or Sammy Hagar doing a public service announcement about going the speed limit.



We’ve seen artists sell in to shilling for vodka and credit cards with their image on them — KISS even offers a coffin with their name on it for fans (excessively obsessed fans, that is). Aerosmith, one of many bands enjoying a boost from being on Guitar Hero, is now betting you’d love to buy your very own Aerosmith lottery tickets. The scratch-offs, each with a theme based on a famous ’Smith song (the “Dude Looks Like a Lady” card should be interesting), will not only offer money as prizes, but also things like concert tickets and Aerosmith merch. Rhode Island and New Hampshire are the only lottery agencies to sign on for the project. Your chances of winning? About the same as the chances Aerosmith will ever make a relevant album again.



05.18.2009 at 09:14 Reply
Do you and your readers really believe that the media is conservative, unfair and imbalanced? In an election where 90% of journalists declared themselves as Democrats, where members of the press corps would applaud Obama when he walked into a press conference, where Chris Matthews had a tingle in his leg due to Obama, where Charlie Gibson misquoted Sarah Palin's views then sneered at her because she did not recall the quote, where the NYT suppressed a story about Obama and his ACORN ties because it was a "game changer", where every host on every major network is a liberal, where Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert skewer Republicans nightly, where 56 out of 57 Slate writers endorsed Obama, and where Keith Olbermann rages incoherently about President Bush? Meanwhile, conservatives are limited to the Wall Street Journal and Fox News, both of which have more liberals on their staffs and as guests than the other media outlets. You can complain about unfair and imbalanced media all you want, but it is not because it is conservative. To think otherwise is delusional. Note: Feel free to publish this as a letter to the editor).


05.22.2009 at 01:21 Reply
Yeah, yeah, yeah — but the point was a "Punk Rock band" teamed up with Rupert Murdoch. That's weird, no matter what side of the spectrum you come down on.