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PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2017 10:15 am 
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I just saw this story about 6 people getting charged for "Counterfeit Pac Man" machines. When a failing video game company (Yes, Namco has had financial issues lately) can enforce copyright on a 30 year old video game, but this industry can't do a thing about the 90% of karaoke shows being run on pirated content... You are inept.

The 17 years I've been coming to this forum (God it's been that long?) I've never seen you people (meaning KJ's) ever once sit down and try and agree to start pestering law enforcement, elected representatives, etc as a group. You were all so dedicated to "being right" instead of "Doing what's right" I've tried to stoke these fires, but it's always been met with BS excuses on why most of you couldn't even be bothered to pick up a phone, or write a letter to an elected offical. Despite none of you doing so, I did. I fought FOR YOU, despite your sometimes obvious disdain for me.

I'm completely out of the business now. We're not going to republish our software ever. I'm selling off the equipment that has gathered dust the last few years. Not that any of you were bright enough to understand what we were setting out to accomplish. A few did, but not many. God you people were, still are so stupid.

I can't exactly say it was all your fault though. The industry sent it's so called "Experts" here. Their experts did nothing more than divide you. You fell for it, hook line and sinker. Very old and effect method for breaking up dissidents. Watching c.staley rip their "Experts" apart is about the only redeeming thing here. (BTW Love you chip! Always a fan)

It's like, one of the easiest to recognize methods of shutting down a movement happened right here. The forum owners, the mods (Yes, you're getting called out here too) should have done something. When have we ever seen karaokescene the magazine actively take on the important issues? I can't remember them ever trying to sound a rallying cry. Shame! Basura!

I'll always look on this place with a bit of a tainted heart. This forum could have been so much more. These users could have done so much more to shape the industry. Instead it all boiled down to people taking the wrong sides for so long, and staying on the wrong side because "I don't want to be wrong" became the motivation, while karaoke scene walked "Middle of the road" or sometimes "Right of the road" because they didn't want to offend the producers because those tasty ads are so juicy.

It's a catch 22 really. At what point do the really smart, creative innovators leave? What does that leave this industry with? I'll still lurk, I'll still post once in a while, but to me this industry will never become more. I have completely lost hope that it will ever see a day of redemption. Most of the users here never wanted to become more, and this industry will never want to put the effort into being any more than it is today.

Thanks for purposely retarding karaoke y'all.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 7:26 am 
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Whoa there!

Since when was the stated goal of this forum to fix karaoke, and what's with all this finger pointing?

We are just concerned individuals like yourself, and have no more responsibility in fixing the problem than yourself. These are state and federal laws that are not being enforced. How is anywhere in the domain of reality that a random forum board should be responsible for enforcing state and federal laws?

If anything, we are part of the solution just in the fact that we are concerned and pointing our the need for change and discussing ideas. It might never be solved, as you say, but to "call out" those that are at least discussing ideas is pretty ignorant on your part.

If you want to yell at someone for not making progress on the issue, yell at the agencies that created these laws and should be enforcing them. That's where the blame lies, not here on a karaoke forum board.

Geez! :confused:

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:13 am 
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toqer wrote:

Thanks for purposely retarding karaoke y'all.

You're welcome.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 11:24 am 
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TopherM wrote:
Whoa there!

Since when was the stated goal of this forum to fix karaoke, and what's with all this finger pointing?

We are just concerned individuals like yourself, and have no more responsibility in fixing the problem than yourself.
Then you have no more responsibility to complain about the situation either right? You can't have it both ways.
TopherM wrote:
These are state and federal laws that are not being enforced. How is anywhere in the domain of reality that a random forum board should be responsible for enforcing state and federal laws?
It's not. This forum board is simply a location to come together and discuss the business... and unfortunately it is a cottage business. It's not a "skill required" business, you don't need special education and for many people it's just a hobby so why would they care about becoming some sort of activist? They are not that invested in this business.

The ones that should have more of an interest are those that derive their entire income from karaoke. And you see some of them here and willing to do something about it. Unfortunately, there is no solid organization that represents them HONESTLY. Any attempts at forming such a group turned out in the past to be funded by and for the benefit of manufacturers only.

The very level of self-serving dishonesty under the guise of "helping and protecting" by previous manufacturers has poisoned even the most honest of KJ's from supporting any group that would purport to help the business. Just look at all the honest KJ's that for years waved the SC flag... until they realized the real motives of this wolf in sheep's clothing. Their venues are now being sued and pirates being cultivated for money by their own "protectors and guardians of the industry."

These previously staunch supporters have over the years grown deathly quiet and virtually vanished from these forums. Were they still here when I was banned for 3 years? Nope, they were still quietly heading for the exits one-by-one.

Publishers have been vilified by these manufacturers for years as "greedy, money-grubbing entities" while the manufacturers themselves weren't obeying the very same state and federal laws that you mention. So when you mention anything about a "responsibility to enforce state and federal laws," how about the responsibility of these very manufacturers to OBEY the state and federal laws?

While it's easy to simply throw up your arms and say "It's the pirate's fault!" you have to realize that "pirates" also includes many of the manufacturers that brought the songs to you. For too many KJ's, turning a blind eye to the piracy of manufacturers was acceptable because the KJ's themselves were the beneficiaries of that piracy. It's only denounced when piracy affects them or other KJ's just like them.
TopherM wrote:
If anything, we are part of the solution just in the fact that we are concerned and pointing our the need for change and discussing ideas. It might never be solved, as you say, but to "call out" those that are at least discussing ideas is pretty ignorant on your part.
Without a unifying organization and a force to do anything about it, discussing ideas is pretty useless. It's interesting discussion for sure and I've always enjoyed discussing ideas that make me more effective at hosting... But trying to get 1,000 KJ's to avoid an illegal source of music won't be effective. Because they have been trained into believing that that they MUST have the LATEST music TODAY in order to stay relevant. You'll never get them to agree just as the manufacturers in the late 90's were unable to get 20 of their companies to agree on anything.
TopherM wrote:
If you want to yell at someone for not making progress on the issue, yell at the agencies that created these laws and should be enforcing them. That's where the blame lies, not here on a karaoke forum board.

Geez!

How about yelling at the manufacturers that failed to obey the laws in the first place? Oh, that's right, most of them are out of business and one of them is now competing with you directly and suing your customers because you spent your hard-earned money and bought their product.

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"For all the back-and-forth I have with Mr. Staley, the thing about him is that he follows the law and our policies in his karaoke operations. We have no interest in putting him out of business, because he's not violating the law." -- HarringtonLaw (a.k.a: Jimmy "The Weasel" Harrington)


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 1:05 pm 
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c. staley wrote:
TopherM wrote:
Whoa there!

Since when was the stated goal of this forum to fix karaoke, and what's with all this finger pointing?

We are just concerned individuals like yourself, and have no more responsibility in fixing the problem than yourself.
Then you have no more responsibility to complain about the situation either right? You can't have it both ways.
TopherM wrote:
These are state and federal laws that are not being enforced. How is anywhere in the domain of reality that a random forum board should be responsible for enforcing state and federal laws?
It's not. This forum board is simply a location to come together and discuss the business... and unfortunately it is a cottage business. It's not a "skill required" business, you don't need special education and for many people it's just a hobby so why would they care about becoming some sort of activist? They are not that invested in this business.

The ones that should have more of an interest are those that derive their entire income from karaoke. And you see some of them here and willing to do something about it. Unfortunately, there is no solid organization that represents them HONESTLY. Any attempts at forming such a group turned out in the past to be funded by and for the benefit of manufacturers only.

The very level of self-serving dishonesty under the guise of "helping and protecting" by previous manufacturers has poisoned even the most honest of KJ's from supporting any group that would purport to help the business. Just look at all the honest KJ's that for years waved the SC flag... until they realized the real motives of this wolf in sheep's clothing. Their venues are now being sued and pirates being cultivated for money by their own "protectors and guardians of the industry."

These previously staunch supporters have over the years grown deathly quiet and virtually vanished from these forums. Were they still here when I was banned for 3 years? Nope, they were still quietly heading for the exits one-by-one.

Publishers have been vilified by these manufacturers for years as "greedy, money-grubbing entities" while the manufacturers themselves weren't obeying the very same state and federal laws that you mention. So when you mention anything about a "responsibility to enforce state and federal laws," how about the responsibility of these very manufacturers to OBEY the state and federal laws?

While it's easy to simply throw up your arms and say "It's the pirate's fault!" you have to realize that "pirates" also includes many of the manufacturers that brought the songs to you. For too many KJ's, turning a blind eye to the piracy of manufacturers was acceptable because the KJ's themselves were the beneficiaries of that piracy. It's only denounced when piracy affects them or other KJ's just like them.
TopherM wrote:
If anything, we are part of the solution just in the fact that we are concerned and pointing our the need for change and discussing ideas. It might never be solved, as you say, but to "call out" those that are at least discussing ideas is pretty ignorant on your part.
Without a unifying organization and a force to do anything about it, discussing ideas is pretty useless. It's interesting discussion for sure and I've always enjoyed discussing ideas that make me more effective at hosting... But trying to get 1,000 KJ's to avoid an illegal source of music won't be effective. Because they have been trained into believing that that they MUST have the LATEST music TODAY in order to stay relevant. You'll never get them to agree just as the manufacturers in the late 90's were unable to get 20 of their companies to agree on anything.
TopherM wrote:
If you want to yell at someone for not making progress on the issue, yell at the agencies that created these laws and should be enforcing them. That's where the blame lies, not here on a karaoke forum board.

Geez!

How about yelling at the manufacturers that failed to obey the laws in the first place? Oh, that's right, most of them are out of business and one of them is now competing with you directly and suing your customers because you spent your hard-earned money and bought their product.


Chip
Surely you know it's cheaper to pay the fine and the bankruptcy fees, than the license fee to produce product...


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 2:56 pm 
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jdmeister wrote:
Chip
Surely you know it's cheaper to pay the fine and the bankruptcy fees, than the license fee to produce product...

I don't know if it's cheaper.... It's certainly more profitable at the front end, but when it ends up costing you your business at the other end, how much cheaper is it really?

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"For all the back-and-forth I have with Mr. Staley, the thing about him is that he follows the law and our policies in his karaoke operations. We have no interest in putting him out of business, because he's not violating the law." -- HarringtonLaw (a.k.a: Jimmy "The Weasel" Harrington)


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 7:06 pm 
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The irony is what makes me laugh. The same KJ's that would buy illegally produced karaoke tracks "in good faith" defend their right to use those illegal tracks while criticizing people who downloaded their illegal songs for free. If you want to ride the High Horse; you should delete all of the songs that were made by manufacturers who didn't pay for all of the proper licenses to produce them in the first place.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:56 pm 
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Karaoke Croaker wrote:
The irony is what makes me laugh. The same KJ's that would buy illegally produced karaoke tracks "in good faith" defend their right to use those illegal tracks while criticizing people who downloaded their illegal songs for free. If you want to ride the High Horse; you should delete all of the songs that were made by manufacturers who didn't pay for all of the proper licenses to produce them in the first place.

that's most everybody from SGB to SC.
with the exception of Party Tyme, who else has not been sued for not licensing their music?
there HAS to be a limit to what we are responsible for ESPECIALLY when you consider culprits of this mess are unwilling to prove they had licensing in place while telling us to do our due diligence before buying.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:10 am 
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my point is what is the difference between using stolen property for free and using stolen property that you paid for? If I knowingly buy a stolen car does that make me somehow better than the guy who originally stole it? We all paid money to the likes of Music Maestro and All Hits and SGB at some point. Those tracks are just as illegal as anything you download from a torrent site for free. Just because you bought them from a middle man doesn't make them legal somehow; but there are people who think that they are a better level of criminal because they paid some middle man for illegally made karaoke tracks. That isn't much different of an argument as the guy who bought a pre-loaded hard drive for 500 dollars with 200,000 songs on it.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 3:59 am 
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Karaoke Croaker wrote:
my point is what is the difference between using stolen property for free and using stolen property that you paid for? If I knowingly buy a stolen car does that make me somehow better than the guy who originally stole it? We all paid money to the likes of Music Maestro and All Hits and SGB at some point. Those tracks are just as illegal as anything you download from a torrent site for free. Just because you bought them from a middle man doesn't make them legal somehow; but there are people who think that they are a better level of criminal because they paid some middle man for illegally made karaoke tracks. That isn't much different of an argument as the guy who bought a pre-loaded hard drive for 500 dollars with 200,000 songs on it.

Well, this is true and false at the same time. How can that be? It can be because when All Hits produced discs, it was before the ABKO vs Stellar Records lawsuit that changed the rules for all the karaoke manufacturers. Synchronization and lyric reprint were questionable at the time and part of the argument by Stellar was that in the absence of a person singing the lyrics (as a regular band would or as part of the recorded song) a reprint of the lyrics the public would hear anyway shouldn't make a difference. They lost and the karaoke landscape was changed forever.

Any AH discs produced after that point, were in fact, not licensed fully because of the court's ruling.

What is really bad are those manufacturers that didn't even bother to get a compulsory mechanical license in the first place. Or those manufacturers that would get only a mechanical for 3 songs from an artist, but then crank out 8 different karaoke songs thinking the publisher wouldn't notice or remember which songs were licensed. You'll notice in the AH song "Won't You Be My Neighbor" (Mr. Rogers), AH added; "Can you say compulsory?" in the track.

Other types like SGB and KJ Tools were just complete rip offs.

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"For all the back-and-forth I have with Mr. Staley, the thing about him is that he follows the law and our policies in his karaoke operations. We have no interest in putting him out of business, because he's not violating the law." -- HarringtonLaw (a.k.a: Jimmy "The Weasel" Harrington)


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2017 5:11 am 
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I've posted this story before, but still on topic.

My buddy Pete asked me to ride along with him to San Pedro.
The task was to appraise a classic auto, and it was not to take much time.
That was (and still is) Pete's primary job, a certified automobile appraiser.
Well we get to San Pedro, enter the garage of the customer, (he looked middle Eastern in appearance) and I took pictures while Pete examined the vehicle, and taking notes.

Near the door to the house, were some cardboard boxes, one with the top open.
Inside, I see the open box is full of Sweet Georgia Brown discs.

I was pretty sure that guy didn't work for anyone connected with SGB.

So I look around, and see this amazing quote.

Quote:
Sweet Georgia Brown is one of the older Companies producing Karaoke CDGs for the North American market. They have not produced anything new for some time and they have sold thousands of discs they did produce. For this reason, they have recovered the initial cost of production making it possible to distribute existing stock at greatly reduced cost. We are pleased to pass these savings on to our customers and that it allows karaoke fans to compile large libraries of songs for an affordable price. The music is generally popular songs in the Country and Pop Genres and with few exceptions there are 15 or more songs on a disc. Sweet Georgia Brown Karaoke Discs will play in all Karaoke Machines capable of reading the most common of karaoke CDs which are the CDs with Graphics or CDGs. They have been tested in all RSQ and Cavs Karaoke Component karaoke Players and Portable Karaoke Players, also Fleco, Venturer, Boss, and many other brands. Sweet Georgia Brown are distributed in North America and World Wide from Canada’s Karaoke Warehouse, Allstar Karaoke located in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.


And, they seem to be available still on Amazon.
https://www.amazon.com/Karaoke-Music-CD ... B000PIH3HK

And Ebay.
https://www.ebay.com/p/SWEET-GEORGIA-BR ... 4097.l9055

I suspect some may actually be not properly licensed.
However, since I don't have a dog in this fight, I don't have cause to compain. :roll:


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:00 am 
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8) The idea that this forum was going to fix anything is rather strange to say the least. Since I got into the KJ hosting business many years ago one thing I learned is you are pretty much on your own. It is up to you to develop your business and the many items that go into making a success of it. No one is going to hold your hand, there are no standards set down, no book telling you how to do the job, or correspondence course. What this forum is for primarily I hope is to exchange experience and ideas with others in this profession. To give some insight as to the nature of this business. Sometimes what is put on here is not worth much, other times it can be quite valuable to the novices that frequent this site. You can't expect too much from it, since the participants devote only what time they can spare.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 19, 2017 8:53 am 
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I used to care. I called people, I wrote letters and I tried to do everything I could think of. It all fell on deaf ears. The people and venue owners I talked to didn't care. The karaoke producers I wrote and called never responded. The letters I wrote to MPs and other people were comepletely ignored.

So it is what it is, I don't have the energy or will to fight anymore. I will continue to do what I have contracted to do, and to do what I believe is right. Beyond that I just don't give a rats arse anymore


-James


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 11:36 am 
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>The idea that this forum was going to fix anything is rather strange to say the least.

How is it strange? This has been the main go-to website for karaoke for at least the last decade, if not longer (Jolt was first, but KS has surpassed it in age) When you are the focal point, the gathering place for many professionals, you owe it to them to do what is in their best interest. Not just for them, but for yourself. In my own experience, the owners (and to a larger degree, the moderators) have done nothing to help rally us together.

For a time, they allowed the industry to dictate what was "passable content" here. Myself, Chip, perhaps the loudest critics of what was going on had our posts removed, our accounts banned.

So don't tell me it's strange to expect it. This forum COULD have done something, but instead chose the way of the greedy coward. I guess in some strange sense I get satisfaction from that.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 12:03 pm 
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toqer wrote:
>The idea that this forum was going to fix anything is rather strange to say the least.

How is it strange? This has been the main go-to website for karaoke for at least the last decade, if not longer (Jolt was first, but KS has surpassed it in age) When you are the focal point, the gathering place for many professionals, you owe it to them to do what is in their best interest. Not just for them, but for yourself. In my own experience, the owners (and to a larger degree, the moderators) have done nothing to help rally us together.

For a time, they allowed the industry to dictate what was "passable content" here. Myself, Chip, perhaps the loudest critics of what was going on had our posts removed, our accounts banned.

So don't tell me it's strange to expect it. This forum COULD have done something, but instead chose the way of the greedy coward. I guess in some strange sense I get satisfaction from that.


I must disagree on one point.
Not much could have been done here, the media producers were running wild, and any controls on production didn't exist,
(I promise not to press 10,000 extras, fingers crossed)
And downloads became the new "Free Money" in the eyes of every broke KJ.

Even the "No Fly" list was and remains a joke. Product available overseas is downloaded here with minimal effort.

I have taught ethics at the college level, and if the karaoke "Problem" was ever brought up, the class would laugh for the rest of the day.

All through the 1990s, I produced CDs and DVDs. I know how the prices were then, Minimal lot of 1,000, $1.65 each, shrink wrapped in a case.
And it's even cheaper now.

Direct download, you're never out of stock. No glass masters, no blank CDs, no cases, no jcard printing, nada.

This web site has promoted karaoke every year as long as I've been here.
Setting up club contests, running an annual contest at the L.A. County Fair, awarding prizes, publishing articles and promoting local business.

Nothing we could have done here would have stopped the collapse of the karaoke industry.


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2017 12:32 pm 
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jdmeister wrote:
Nothing we could have done here would have stopped the collapse of the karaoke industry.

Amen.

It collapsed from the inside (producer level) out.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:48 am 
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8) Every industry goes through a business cycle just like every technology does. First there were records, then 8 tracks, cassettes, disc, now digital. With all of these tech changes come industry changes, like in karaoke. It used to be very expensive to set up a karaoke service business, and that is why the host could ask for a top wage. Now technology has brought the cost down, and of course increased competition and lowered fees that hosts can charge. There is still money to be made but you have to really work for it and concentrate on volume of gigs as opposed to doing a couple of shows a week. Unless of course you are just earning extra cash and don't need a full time job. For the most part making a living off of hosting alone has passed, and I think the zenith of karaoke has passed as well.


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 6:17 am 
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Many KJs lose $1.00 on every gig, and make it up on volume..
:withstupid:


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PostPosted: Sat Sep 23, 2017 5:41 pm 
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Fixing karaoke... will never happen. What KJs need to do is find new ideas to mine new customers, and keep the interest of older ones.

I have a few irons in the fire... will they work? The short answer is I don't know. But if I can make money by investing into some new ideas that keep me employed for a few years more, I'm all for it.

And if my show isn't considered a true "Karaoke" show anymore... I don't care if i get a crowd ;)


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 27, 2017 1:53 am 
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8) There is the key to everything getting and keeping the fickle crowd, entertained and wanting to come to a show. Without the patrons you might as well be playing at home to your self and a few friends.


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