Friday, August 08, 2008

Warner Music: Game Companies Are Cheapskates

The music industry isn't seeing enough benefit from the hugely successful music game genre, according to a Warner Music exec.

Warner Music chief Edgar Bronfman said in a Forbes piece, "There is what I would call a very paltry licensing fee per song" in music deals with game companies.

Warner Music has big-name bands appearing in Actvision's Guitar Hero, not the least of which is Metallica. Activision is set to publish Guitar Hero: Metallica, and will also release Metallica's upcoming album, "Death Magnetic" as downloadable content in Guitar Hero III and Guitar Hero World Tour.

In January, Activision Blizzard announced that its hit Guitar Hero franchise had generated over $1 billion in sales. That amount is growing, as the company introduces new iterations of the series and releases more paid downloadable music.

MTV Games' Rock Band has sold over 1.5 million copies.

Both franchises have sold millions of individual songs through digital distribution via online marketplaces such as Xbox Live and PlayStation Network.

Bronfman said, "I think the industry as a whole needs to take a very different look at this business and participate more fully and in a much more partnership way. And if that does not become the case, as far as Warner Music is concerned, we will not license to those games."

The exec also stated in a separate Reuters report, "The amount being paid to the music industry, even though their games are entirely dependent on the content we own and control, is far too small." via Edge

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