Can we trust 1Malawimusic.net?


Call me atechnology freak, but I seem to have very strong misgivings on the new site thatwill enable Malawian musicians to promote their music to a global audience.
It is saidthis will also give fans a chance to get their hands on it for free; I don’tknow if my freakiness is coming in because of this point.
But foryour information Timve Media Group (TMG) as a recording studio and agency thatworks to promote local musicians has created a new site, 1Malawimusic.net.
This willbe possible for it will be allowing local musicians to promote their talent byuploading selected tracks or even full albums online.
The otherthing that is perhaps giving me creeps is the fact that this site is deliveringthe music to registered users, who can legally download and share it for free.
If youvisit the site ‘1 Malawian Music dot Net’ you will be left impressed with thebeauty of the site with album covers of our local musicians.
The firstwindows of the website is on promotion, then there is where you can get to the termsof use with declaring under a sub-headline called ‘content’ that the authorreserves the right not to be responsible for the topicality, correctness,completeness or quality of the information provided.
It thusdeclares further that liability claims regarding damage caused by the use ofany information provided, including any kind of information which is incompleteor incorrect, will therefore be rejected.


A second point under the terms of use is Referrals and links which says the author is not responsible forany contents linked or referred to from his pages and is not liable for anypostings or messages published by users of discussion boards, guest books or mailinglists provided on his page.

The third one discusses Copyright where it says the author intended not to use anycopyrighted material for the publication or, if not possible, to indicate thecopyright of the respective object.

It says the copyright for any material created by the author is reserved. The fourth on Privacy policy says they monitorstats on this website, while the fifth one on Legal validity of their disclaimer.
It also saysif one owns any music that is posted onthe site and would like to request it to be taken off; they would be requiredto email them with proof of ownership.
Of course videos arestreamed from YouTube but the claims that every time a video gets played on theirwebsite YouTube will register views.
The musicians have also a section on thewebsite on how they can upload their music.

Artists areadvised not to email music, unless communicated to the hosts who say will notupload any music that has been emailed to them via email.
Musiciansare supposed to put the music tracks as mp3 in a folder that has been labeledwith their name including a picture and any other information they require togo with their music like social links, email, video links etc) and then zip thefolder.

The website has already registered the mostdownloaded music and leading the list a track called ‘Ngati Kumaloto’ done byBlack Thunder, Third Eye and Barry One.
The second track is ‘Mafilu’ done by Sonye,Nepman and Tay Grin; the third is ‘Unamata’ by Piksy, fourth is ‘Sweet like’ byKalista and Sonye, fifth is ‘Pauchidolo’ by Young Kay featuring Armstrong.
‘Dziko lathu’ by Mafunyeta takes sixth,followed on the seventh by Pombo, Maskal and Sonye with their remix called‘Tabwela’. Young Kay’s ‘Zipepese’ and ‘Wazilila’ and ‘Domado’ both done byFikisa are eighth, ninth and tenth respectively.
It is clear that the musicians are not beingtold how, apart from the initial reason to promote them, they will benefitfinancially. I know there has to be a way of ensuring that artists are not leftin the cold.
Yes the website is well organised with awindow for dancehall and reggae, gospel, hip-hop, R&B, all artists, fullalbums and videos.
The other challenge I am faced with withinis how those who will freely download the music will not produce many copies ofsuch and sell them at the expense of the musicians. The question are how willthe musicians going to be protected from exploitation, first from the websitehost and secondly the users.
I know how already, the musicians in Malawiare abused through the normal mediocre marketing system that is available inMalawi.
But being a completely new technology asproven by the type of musicians already on the site [as you cannot find MikokoBrothers Band for example] what measures will also be there not to use artists’ignorance to exploit them.
This is all questioned considering how muchmoney is involved to release a music track let alone an album. Can 1Malawimusic.net be trusted?
Feedback:drummingpen@columnist.com
    
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About Gregory Gondwe - Malawi Best Blogger 2014

Gregory Gondwe is a Malawian journalist who started practising journalism in 1993. Until March 31, 2012 he was regional editor and bureau chief for Zodiak Broadcasting Station (ZBS). Gregory is also a media consultant assisting several international journalists pursuing assignments in Malawi. He holds a Diploma of Journalism and an Intermediate Certificate in Journalism among other media-related certificates. He is also columnist for Malawi's first and oldest weekly, Malawi News. He can be contacted on gregorygondwe@gmail.com.
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