music video

Au Revoir MusiquePlus

Quebecois music video broadcaster MusiquePlus will go off air in August.

This is one the channels I use to watch alternatively with Much Music in the 80’s and 90’s, which introduced me to francophone rock and pop from Quebec/Canada, France and Belgium, through music videos and live performances.

Unfortunately, like most music channels they started diversifying their content in the late 90’s, slowly leaving music videos behind and i’ve stopped watching it because it had been flooded with “reality” programs.

When Youtube came along in 2005, this was the beginning of the end for these stations, the coup de grace being Vevo, which came online in December 2009.

I will miss it, especially Claude Rajote’s “Le Cimetière des CD”, one of the channel’s longest running music critique program.

Bad News For Betamax Fans

It looks like Betamax is officially dead, according to a Sony press release that was released today.

Yes, the video format was not killed off during the format Betamax/VHS war and actually lived on in the video production and broadcasting industries until digital video. But Sony has now decided to stop making their blank beta format videocassettes.

Unfortunately that means that some of you hardcore beta fans will no longer have easy access to blank videocassettes for your classic videotape cameras, including those micro MV video cassettes that you’ve used in the 90’s and early 2000’s. And although I don’t have an official Sony betamax videocamera it appears that i’ve used the format several times to film some of my older Youtube videos and have a few of the discontinued Sony micro MV videocassettes in storage.

My format of choice is now of course those digital SDHD cards but hard drive and solid state hard drive camcorders are getting more and more affordable as time goes by.

Youtube Music Subscriptions ?

Billboard has reported yesterday that Youtube is working on a new premium service that may enable individual subscribers to view music videos offline and/or without adverts.

Apparently Google has already secured licenses with Warner, Sony and Universal. But I’m guessing a Canadian service will take so time to be implemented.

Additional information on the American service can be found on the Billboard article. I will post information related to a Canadian service as soon as it becomes available.

Vimeo Not Exempt

U.S. District Judge Ronnie Abrams has denied Vimeo’s request to be exempt from prosecution under the safe harbor provisions of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and will now be subject to litigation by the major record companies.

This user generated content web site features lip dub videos, on which recordings can be heard playing whilst individuals lip sync to the lyrics found in these recordings. But the judge also claimed that 144 of the 199 videos should not be included in the legal action.

Of the 199 videos only 55 were confirmed that have been known about by Vimeo staff, who commented, liked or uploaded these videos. And Vimeo argues that this staff may not have realized that the content infringed copyright, also arguing that they should not be held responsible for the actions of their employees.

I’m also assuming that “fair use” will come into play if the videos are satirical or comical. But I guess we’ll be hearing more about this case as those 55 videos are slowly reviewed.

Vevo/Youtube vs Buying Music Videos

As you may or may not know I like to purchase music video compilations.

I have been purchasing music videos since the late 80’s with the release of Def Leppard’s "Historia" on VHS and have since collected hundreds of compilations from various genres, my latest purchases being from iTunesicon. And I suspect that I will continue purchasing music videos and music video compilations regardless of the renewal of Youtube’s contract with Vevo.

I like Vevo. It enables me to preview music videos and watch videos that I can’t purchase. But I prefer owning music videos because I don’t want to be dependent on the internet and the site being online to watch music videos.

The adverts are acceptable and fund the site. But the logo in the bottom right can get distracting at times and they don’t carry every music video or allow me to every music video they have because of rights issues so I will probably keep searching eBay for that elusive DVD, DVD single and CD/DVD compilation.

Having watched music videos since the first airings of CBC programs Video Hits and Good Rockin’ Tonight, most of the music videos I am looking for are Canadian and from the 80’s, so quite a few music videos that I want are still unavailable on both Vevo and iTunesicon because they’re mostly interested in the most popular music videos. And the record companies don’t appear to be interested in releasing music video compilations until a certain profit threshold is reached, even when the compilation is already completed and mastered like Platinum Blonde’s "The Complete DVD Collection" and Honeymoon Suite’s "Bed of Nails".

I am definitely not a stranger to the pre-order delay and cancellation, having ordered dozens of video compilations that were eventually shelved. And though being able to access some videos on Vevo would be better than relying on low quality user uploads on Youtube, some of which are plagued with more intrusive logos, I would still prefer the ability to purchase these music videos individually.

Overall I’d say Vevo is a excellent service, when it has the videos you want and when it enables you to view them. And when the plug-in doesn’t crash !

Yes, I was listening to a Mylene Farmer video from Universal France while I was typing this and it crashed. And this happens from time to time on Youtube/Vevo as well. But I haven’t encountered these issues playing music videos I’ve purchased and downloaded to my drive or network drive.

I would of course purchase this particular video but it isn’t available on DVD or online yet. ARGH!

Oh well, time to check my European sources to see if Kate Bush’s "The Whole Story" was released on DVD or blu-ray. 🙂

Do you want your MTV ?

Vevo had created a new service for internet connected televisions, mobile devices and tablets called VevoTV, on which music videos are played randomly.

New and classic music videos from multiple genres are featured on this 24 hour service, whose is currently available to American and Canadian Facebook members. And yes, it can also be viewed on your computer.