The recording industry, that fine and upstanding community institution of unimpeachable repute, has put its usual sort of deal on the Pressplay and MusicNet commercial download services: $0.0023 per download, according to an extensive article on the subject in the New York Times (free login required for access). Many artists are now attempting to have their music removed from these services.
“When their music is used in movies, in commercials and on Internet sites, artists are paid a licensing fee, which, after payments to the producer and the publisher, is split 50-50 between artist and label. Although Pressplay and MusicNet license the music, the bands are not paid a licensing fee. Instead, the labels pay their artists a standard royalty for each song accessed by a fan, as they would for a CD sold. This means that the artist gets on average less than 15 percent instead of 50 percent. But, out of that, 35 to 45 percent is deducted for standard CD expenses like packaging and promotional copies – expenses that obviously don’t exist in the online world.”
See also article mirror on Slashdot, and extensive and interesting Slashdot commentary. “When my one hit wonder song goes platinum and receives 1,000,000 downloads, I will have made a wopping 2,300 dollars, almost enough to compensate the recording studio for greeting me … I’ll bet Scientology wishes they thought of it first.”