This isn’t a how-to of illegally downloading music, this is so that artists are aware of how easy it is to not get paid for their music. Basically, if you post a song online, it can be downloaded for free. Youtube is the easiest to download from, soundcloud is super easy as well; whether you provide a download link or not, songs can be taken right off of almost any website. Be aware of this when you post your music online; post samples of your songs, not full songs if you’re really looking to sell the song. Another thing an artist/band can do is upload a slightly different version of a song- maybe without a drumtrack, or an instrumental-only version. Another method is to voice over the song, such as near the beginning and end, the music might lower in volume and a person can say (right over the song) “You’re listening to XX by YY from their album ZZ.” Another thing you could do is to put up a demo. Just some ideas.
There are websites dedicated to downloading content from other websites, as well as free media players that provide their own content downloader. Basically, if you don’t want your song to be reached for free, don’t post the full unmodified version of it online. I know this might make it seem harder to promote a single, EP, or full album, but really, posting a short version of a song or a modified version is a great way to be heard and not worry as much about the potential of lost profits. The lack of free access to the full final version of a song might just be what it takes to sell it- this can act as a teazer to fans or potential fans who end up hearing it and want to hear more.
The best way I’ve seen to protect against this (besides the methods mentioned above) is to have your song on an imbedded web player; these are still copyable but not as easily.
I challenge anyone who thinks otherwise to send me a link to their song, and I will email an mp3 of it back to them.
I know this is a short post- just something to put up today. Bigger things are in the works for this blog for the near future- stay tuned. 🙂