Friday, October 15, 2010

Victory Records Anti-Piracy Ad

Victory Records has recorded and released an anti-piracy ad featuring Gilbert Godfried.

Gilbert Godfried? Seriously? Nothing against the guy, but why would you have him in an ad like this? An anti-movie piracy ad, sure. But this ad is specifically about music, why would you use a washed-up comedian, especially one that's mainly known for how irritating his voice is?

Also, and this should NOT be viewed as an endorsement of piracy, his example of McDonald's is ridiculous. It kinda reminds me of Jack Valenti's cognac glasses example regarding DVD back-ups. Music piracy is not theft in the traditional sense (note: "in the traditional sense," not "is not theft at all"). If you go into a McDonald's and demand free food, McDonald's would then be losing the food they paid for. There is a physical loss of product. If I download the new A Hero A Fake album (which, rest assured, is not going to happen), no record store has lost a physical product they paid for. There is no physical loss. Have you seen the ads the movie studios put out regarding piracy? The "you wouldn't steal a car" ads? Ridiculous. Labels and studios for some reason continue to insist that it's the exact same crime, but digital piracy is a different kind of theft from walking into a store and stealing a CD. And they aren't going to make much progress in stopping piracy until they realize that and adjust their tactics accordingly.

And that part at the end of the video? "Support The Artist, Support The Music?" Made me laugh. Most record labels, Victory included, don't exist to support the artists, they exist to support the wallets of the people that own or run them. I can think of a handful of labels that actually support their artists (Fat Wreck Chords, Plan-It-X/No Idea, and of course my digital friends Quote Unquote and Death To False Hopes), but for most labels it's nothing more than business. Victory has helped launch the careers of a few lucky bands (such as Hawthorne Heights), but they've also had their fare share of issues with bands that feel they've been treated unfairly (such as Hawthorne Heights, as well as Streetlight Manifesto). Piracy doesn't support artists, that part is true. But buying the CD from or Walmart or FYE or even the label doesn't do that much for them either. Honestly, in terms of supporting the band, you'd be doing more for them by buying a ticket to the show and buying a shirt or CD there.

Seriously? Gilbert Godfried?

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