Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: One Million Tunes

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  • 3410,

    Nobody is born with good sense (or common sense). It is all learnt.

    Got any evidence for this, or is your conclusion just "common sense"?

    Personally, I don't think it's true.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

  • Danyl Mclauchlan,

    3 once again the victims are again being run through the wringer, and the alleged offender is apparently getting daddy to call in the lawyers.

    I look forward to your spirited defense of Ian Wishart when he starts running stories about the children of Labour and Green Party MP's.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 927 posts Report Reply

  • kmont,

    Hello Craig Young, I haven't had a chance to read your side of this yet because gaynz.com is blocked by the work filters. Interesting logic these work filters......
    I earlier mentioned "trawling bebo for dirt" which in light of the fact that you had complaints is a little unfair.

    wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 485 posts Report Reply

  • Joanna,

    because gaynz.com is blocked by the work filters. Interesting logic these work filters......

    In denfense of your work filters (wow, there's a phrase I'm surprised I'm using), gaynz.com has a lot of half naked ads for sex hook-up services, like the seedy back pages of The Truth. I looked at them and hastily scrolled down the page because they do look a little NSFW.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 746 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    How does the Manic Street Preachers song go, "if you tolerate this, then your children will be next"

    Well, at the moment I'm thinking more of the Two Nice Girl's lesbo-Tex country anthem 'I Spent My Last $10 00 (On Birth Control And Beer)' 'cause kids sound like an utter waste of time and money.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    Daddy should have run the boy through the coals and got the content removed.

    Getting the content removed could be pretty hard. If a recalcitrant teenager won't cough up a password, how would you prove to Bebo that you're his Dad and that he's underage?

    I'm also not sure how you know Daddy hasn't run the boy through the coals. Since a big part of this "story" is that Daddy doesn't want to talk about it at all, it's a bit hard to tell, I'd say.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Fitzgerald,

    I'm not a lawyer but trashing a 14yr old in the media might just contravene the Children, Young Persons, and Their Families Act 1989

    http://www.legislation.govt.nz/browse_vw.asp?content-set=pal_statutes

    Sure he said shit but he is a kid and needs protecting.

    Since May 2007 • 631 posts Report Reply

  • Michael Fitzgerald,

    Whoops here it is

    Definition of child or young person in need of care or protection

    14Definition of child or young person in need of care or protection

    (1)A child or young person is in need of care or protection within the meaning of this Part of this Act if—


    (a)The child or young person is being, or is likely to be, harmed (whether physically or emotionally or sexually), ill-treated, abused, or seriously deprived; or

    (b)The child's or young person's development or physical or mental or emotional wellbeing is being, or is likely to be, impaired or neglected, and that impairment or neglect is, or is likely to be, serious and avoidable; or

    Since May 2007 • 631 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Getting back to the original lead, although the new releases available via the Amazon store are quite impressive, the back catalogue is full of stuff that was already available as DRM-free MP3s -- ie, it's on emusic, for cheaper.

    I'm also finding navigation sort of annoying, and the search isn't nearly as good as emusic's, and the selection is kinda square. In fact, it does underline how great emusic is for non-mainstream music.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22747 posts Report Reply

  • Compie,

    Sorry Russell.

    As for the Moral crusader Mr English.


    “I am totally responsible for my children’s physical and moral welfare”
    http://www.billenglish.co.nz/index.php?/categories/4-Articles

    Let's hope he's exercised a little of that?

    Dunedin/Vancouver • Since Nov 2006 • 114 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    On the other hand, getting Bat for Lashes' Fur and Gold for less than a third of the shop price is good ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22747 posts Report Reply

  • Compie,

    Actually Russell back to the lead post.

    Music pricing. Could someone please explain to me the rational/workings of the prices of CD's in NZ. Are there preposterous taxes placed on these, or are their evil market forces at work.

    The reason I ask is because I'm living for the next 6 months in Vancouver and one of the first tasks off the plane was to leg it to Virgin Megastore on Robson st. To my horror it's now an HMV mega store (turns out semantic change), but the prices have remained the same in the 5 years I have been away.

    Price comparison:
    Back To Black - Amy Winehouse $11.99 CnD ($16 NZD) HMV Vancouver
    Back To Black - Amy Winehouse $26.12 CnD ($34.95 NZD) Real Groovy NZ

    Ever since my first trip to Vancouver in 1999 it's bugged me to death knowing the prices we pay back in NZ and every year they just keep creeping up. Does the govt see CDs in the same light as smoking and each budget sting the music addict just a little further?

    I can understand why given global markets, position at the end of the earth etc etc but come on when we are paying more or less twice what Vancouverites are paying consistently, it bugs me.

    Dunedin/Vancouver • Since Nov 2006 • 114 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    I remember in the late '80s, LPs and tapes were about $12 and CDs were about $22. The logic was that because CDs were new, fewer people bought them and they cost more to make.

    But that $10-ish price gap remained there and CD prices steadily increased, even when tapes died, LPs became niche and the CD dominated.

    One of the happiest days of my life was when I went to Tower Records in LA in 1993 and bought a whole bunch of new CDs that were about half of what I'd have paid in Aotearoa.

    Something is going on.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    For those of us who aren't particularly tech-savvy, what is a 'public beta' and does it need to be treated with caution?

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12370 posts Report Reply

  • 100 Word,

    I just set up an account when prompted. It didn't have a New Zealand option for the address (I used CA 90210) but they were happy to take my card and deliver the bits.

    I signed up to a service, Game Tap, that said it was US only. When I was cancelling the service and told them I'd lied about my address they offered me a month's free subscription if I stayed on.

    Wonder what these companies are trying to avoid by imposing the US only restriction upfront (creating the appearance that they're not infringing the copyright oof their content providers?).

    Since Sep 2007 • 13 posts Report Reply

  • Compie,

    Last time I left Vancouver (2002) I left with about 45 CDs, then got the tax back (GST) from the canadian Govt so they got even cheaper by the time I hit NZ shores.

    I'd hate to think how many CDs I'm gonna return with this time, it's so nice to be in the store and browsing titles again (sorry Real Groovy Dunners but Vancouver and iTunes has you dupped).

    I'll be migty pissed if I find out that all that extra cost is going to support Parliamentary Barber shop jaunts to the Denver International Barbershop Convention

    Dunedin/Vancouver • Since Nov 2006 • 114 posts Report Reply

  • Stephen Judd,

    what is a 'public beta' and does it need to be treated with caution?

    It's all care but no responsibility taken. I would not entrust anything important to something that was labelled "in beta".

    It means, theoretically, we're still in test mode. We may shut down, we may screw up, we may take all your data with us, and we definitely have more bugs than we should.

    Back in the old days, things were in alpha test when they could run at all, and beta testing was when a hand-picked group of users were asked to test and report bugs. "Public beta" is an oxymoron by the old standard. It's really a way of getting you to test for us and feel privileged for doing so. On-line apps are a continual work in progress these days and this is another manifestation of that.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 3122 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    I remember in the late '80s, LPs and tapes were about $12 and CDs were about $22.

    The listed price of CDs when they first appeared was around the $30 mark, and they've never really moved much since. Any CD bought for $22 was either mid priced or discounted a la warehouse. In list terms (ie the recommended retail based on what the labels are charging the the shops) CDs have increased only about $3 in 20 years.

    The US and Canada may be cheaper but the list price (around US$18-$19) is not (or rather wasn't until 2007) that much less than NZ. The difference is in the discounts offered by retailers, and the discounts offered to retailers.

    The list prices in the UK, Japan and much of Europe are much higher than NZ.

    Oh, and AmazonMP3...I don't think Steve Jobs will be happy tonight and neither should he be, its turned slow, hard to navigate, user unfriendly iTunes into a clunky dinosaur overnight. With Beatport, AmazonMP3 and eMusic, iTunes is utterly irrelevant to me, and also to the overwhelming bulk of MP3 consumers around the world who don't even consider an iPod as their player.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3283 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    It's all care but no responsibility taken. I would not entrust anything important to something that was labelled "in beta".

    Heh. Have you seen our masthead?

    Although that's a sort of hip Google News-type use of "beta" ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22747 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    iTunes is utterly irrelevant to me, and also to the overwhelming bulk of MP3 consumers around the world who don't even consider an iPod as their player.

    I do kind of fret that we'll get stuck with a very outdated file format for music though, just because it's the incumbent. It would be nice if AAC could somehow become the new MP3 ...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22747 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    The listed price of CDs when they first appeared was around the $30 mark

    Ah, I was kind of guessing with $22. All I remember is that as a 13-year-old, CDs seemed so outrageously expensive that I couldn't even dream of buying them.

    I heard some some young teenage boys talking on the bus today. One of them had some rare new song - "You can't even download it yet!". He played it to the other on his cellphone. I'm glad music is like this now.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Compie,

    Oh well it's all inspired me to spend all of $40 and go and buy about 4-5 rand spanking new CDs.

    The only ones that are expensive here are those bought in from the UK.

    Dunedin/Vancouver • Since Nov 2006 • 114 posts Report Reply

  • JP Hansen,

    When my dad got our new stereo in 1985 or 86 (the dealer chucked in Brothers In Arms on CD free), the first few CDs he bought still have their price sticker on - Graceland, Best of The Cars, Joshua Tree and they're all in the $36 - $40 range.

    Pretty sure at least 2 of those were purchased from Marbecks.

    So prices were all over the place, even back then.

    Waitakere • Since Nov 2006 • 206 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    The logic was that because CDs were new, fewer people bought them and they cost more to make.

    It's my understanding that that's a falsehood. CDs are physically much cheaper to make, and also cheaper to put the music onto. I don't know how accurate/unbiased this is:

    A CD, with its plastic jewel box, printed booklet and tray card now costs a major label about 80 cents each to make (or less) and a small independent label between $1.50 and $2.50. Meaning that CD's should now cost the consumer less than their original prices over a decade ago, not more. But the music business got consumers used to the idea of paying the higher price and the labels got used to the idea of their higher profit margin, and record labels continue to this day to pay almost all artists a royalty rate as if they're selling CD's for the list price of vinyl. That extra 4 or 5 or 6 bucks goes right into the pockets of the record labels.

    In the very early stages, lots of new CDs failed, so they might have been more expensive, but everything since the 90s has been a rip-off, surely?

    When my dad got our new stereo in 1985 or 86 (the dealer chucked in Brothers In Arms on CD free)

    That's weird. When my family brought its first stereo with a CD player (1988 I think), the salesperson left Brothers in Arms on CD in the CD player accidentally, and we kept it.

    Maybe it's the only way they could offload that CD?

    Since Nov 2006 • 6243 posts Report Reply

  • FletcherB,

    The very first time I recall seeing CD's for sale, there was only three or five titles available, and they were $45 each. I beleive Michael Jackson's "Thriller" or "Off the wall" was one of them?

    And I concur with Simon, that with the exception of when they were very new, they have hovered between $35 and $30 for "full price" titles ever since... Although I would agree there was a period in the '90's where far more were discounted down to $22-$25 than is the norm these days...

    I also recall my older brother rushing out to buy a CD player when one became available to Card members of Rio in High st at the bargain price of $400.... about half the price of the cheapest previously available!

    West Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 887 posts Report Reply

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