Happy birthday to the Future of Music Coalition
The Future of Music Coalition is having a birthday party and you are invited. This non-profit organization is turning 12 and they would love for you to come tonight to the Gibson Guitar Showroom from 6-8:30 to celebrate with them. Just what does the Future of Music Coalition (FMC) do, you may ask?
In the words of Lissa Rosenthal, Executive Director, the FMC,
"works to ensure a diverse musical culture where artists flourish, are compensated fairly for their work and where fans can find the music they want. We do this through a combination of original research, advocacy, and educational programming. This means that we wrestle with a whole host of issues that impact musicians and their livelihoods--everything from access to affordable health insurance, to reforming laws so musicians can earn royalties from broadcast radio; from freedom of expression to guarding against consolidation in media ownership."
The organization began in 2000 founded by a group of musicians, technologists, artist advocates, and legal experts who all came together around the idea that musicians needed to have a more central voice regarding the issues that impacted their livelihoods. As the digital music economy began to boom the media focused on the conflict between the music industry and “disruptive technological innovations”. Lissa stated, “ The real world experiences and ambitions of working musicians were frequently absent from these debates. We wanted to fix that.” And they have diligently been working to do so for these past twelve years.
Some of the accomplishments that the FMC are most proud of are working in partnership with a coalition of media reformers to allow the FCC to grant more licenses to low power FM stations. This allowed for local communities to have access to greater diversity of voices on the air. They were also a strong force in the defeat of SOPA/PIPA. If passed that set of bills would have “compromised the very tools that artists are using to build their careers in the digital marketplace.”
The biggest issue that the FMC is working on now and has always been their overarching concern is finding ways to build a sustainable musicians’ middle class. Their goals are for every musician “to be able to pay a mortgage, have access to health insurance, and have access to audiences online and offline.” As well as creating a balance between intellectual property enforcement mechanisms and the creators’ rights while preserving free expression online. They ask the hard question, “How do we create a more democratic, decentralized media environment that isn't controlled by a handful of giant corporations?
The FMC is currently working on a large scale research project called “Artist Revenue Streams” which documents and catalogs the myriad ways that artists are making a living in 2012, creating the most complete picture of how musicians make money that include everything from sound recordings to teaching. They have identified 43 different revenue streams through their research. They are using this data to make a stronger argument in the debate over how musicians make their money no longer relying on anecdotal evidence and conjecture. They are releasing this information at money.futureofmusic.org.
If you would like to support the Future of Music Coaltion, this summer they are running a grassroots fundraising campaign called “Summer of Love”. You can make donations, buy tee shirts, and attend their events. The next event is their birthday party and you are invited so don’t miss out. There will be refreshments and a silent auction consisting of one of a kind rock photos by Perry Julien Photography in addition to rockstar-signed posters and books. If you can’t make it today you can still make a donation to support this great organization and help them further their mission. Their next event will be their Annual Summit held November 15-17.
Short URL: http://bit.ly/QU1dAZ