Judge approves MAP settlement

Discussion in 'Music' started by Brian Perry, Jun 16, 2003.

  1. Brian Perry

    Brian Perry Cinematographer

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    http://www.sltrib.com/2003/Jun/06142...ness/66076.asp

    Well, it appears that we may see a few dollars after all. According to the article, each person who filed a valid claim should receive $12.63 in cash. (I'm still skeptical that I'll ever receive a penny.) It doesn't make up for the money I was supposedly defrauded for the 500 or so CDs I purchased over the time frame in question, but heck, it'll buy a couple of burgers.

    Not a bad day for the lawyers, either. I figure they stand to make over $20 million. Out of the $67 million cash award, only $44 million is going to pay consumers--the remaining $23 million goes to legal fees and distribution costs, the latter of which shouldn't be more than a few million.

    I'm still amazed how the non-cash portion of the award is being portrayed. They say 5.6 million music CDs, worth $76 million, will be distributed to schools. As I've written before, who picks these CDs? What's to prevent the record companies from donating bargain bin CDs that nobody wants and yet still make it sound as though they're "paying" what comes out to $13.50 per CD? Just the fact that these CDs are being valued at retail prices and not the true cost to the record companies is appalling.
     
  2. Michael St. Clair

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    I never filled out a claim. I decided the potential payout wasn't worth letting them have my name and address for their database.
     
  3. Brian Perry

    Brian Perry Cinematographer

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    I wonder how (or if) they will determine if someone's claim is valid. Like I said, I'm probably on the high side as far as CDs purchased, but I don't have a single receipt for any of them. Will all or part of the administrative costs go towards trying to confirm claims or are they just going to take our word for it? I'm assuming they're just going to send checks to everyone in the database who filed a claim (checking, of course, for obvious problems like duplicate entries, etc.). However, who knows--they could decide to blow the money on an "enforcement staff" that would go through the tedium of verifying each person's claim.

    Maybe lawyers familiar with class action suits could explain this. In the past, I've never filed the paperwork for various CA-suits stemming from stock transactions in which I've stood to receive only pennies. To me, it wasn't worth the hassle of producing brokerage statements. This is the first time I've seen one where all you had to do was send in a claim stating that you purchased something--with no proof.

    We'll see.
     
  4. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

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  5. Brian Perry

    Brian Perry Cinematographer

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  6. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

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    My only point was that this is not fraud. It may be collusion, but it isn't fraud. [​IMG]
     
  7. Rich Malloy

    Rich Malloy Producer

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    I don't know why we're squabbling over the meaning of the word "fraud", but let it be known that rather than answering the charges that they colluded to violate antitrust laws (a big part of what keeps the "free" in our "free market"), the following companies agreed to this settlement:

    Warner-Elektra-Atlantic Corp.
    Sony Music Entertainment
    EMI Music Distribution
    Universal Music Group
    Bertelsmann Music Group
    Tower Records
    Musicland Stores
    Transworld Entertainment

    Speak ill of them when you can, circumvent them whenever possible, and wish for their imminent irrelevance.
     

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