'YouTube are the devil' says Metallica manager

“Youtube, they’re the devil,” proclaims Peter Mensch, one of the world’s most powerful and influential band managers.

With a client list stacked with bands like Metallica, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Muse and Volbeat, when Mensch talks, industry insiders tend to listen and he reckons YouTube are slowing strangling the life out of the record industry.

He tells a BBC Radio 4 documentary: “YouTube, they're the devil.

“We don't get paid at all. If someone doesn't do something about YouTube, we're screwed. It's over. Someone turn off the lights.

"It's hard to make people pay for what they've been getting for free. That's consumer behaviour 101."

Mensch dismisses the video streaming site’s current business model, which is heavily reliant on adverts as ‘unsustainable.’

His comments came during the BBC Radio 4 documentary, The Business of Music, which is available on the BBC iPlayers with part two to follow on April 25.

Figures released within the annual report the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI), last week look to emphasise Mensch’s concerns as it expressed concern at the widening "value gap" between the volume of music consumed on free, "user-upload" services - including YouTube, Daily Motion and Soundcloud - and the amount of revenue they generate for the industry.

"The market-distorting value gap must be resolved if music is to thrive in the long term," the report says, adding that it hoped to pursue a legislative solution.

£447m was generated in 2015 by 900 million consumers on streaming sits such as YouTube with 68 million paying music subscribers elsewhere generating £1.4bn.

The problem also has a "serious impact" on subscription services like Spotify and Apple Music, who struggle to attract paying customers, the report continued.

But YouTube claim to have paid out more than £2.1bn to the music industry over the years of service.

YouTube CEO Robert Kynci says: "It really depends on what is the flow of the money from us to you.

"The artists who are signed up directly with YouTube are seeing great returns. Not everybody – but if you're generating a lot of viewership, you're making a lot of money."

 

eric@newrocktimes.com

 

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