| THE BUSINESS OF NEW YEAR'S EVE CONCERTS: On Dec. 31, thousands of concert-goers across the country will usher in 2013 to live music from their favorite artists -- whether it's the rare double-billing of Coldplay and Jay-Z at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, an intimate performance with the Black Keys at the Joint in Las Vegas or A$AP Rocky at House of Blues in Hollywood -- the business of New Year's is a very different proposition than the rest of the year.
| BUSINESS MATTERS: WHAT MATTERED -- AND DIDN'T -- IN DIGITAL MUSIC STARTUP FUNDING IN 2012: Was 2012 a good year for music startup fundraising? It depends on your definition of a music startup and how many companies you'd like to raise the millions of dollars required to operate a licensed, on-demand music service . But make no mistake: a lot of companies raised a lot of money this year -- and some more than others...
| CAN DRAKE TRADEMARK THE TERM YOLO? While perusing through the aisles of Macy's and Walgreens, early Christmas, Drake called out the store for their items with the motto, "YOLO," printed on them. While Drake popularized the term "YOLO," which stands for "You Only Live Once" in his song "The Motto," he might have a tough time trademarking it. A preliminary search on the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office site turned up some 81 trademarks with the term YOLO, including: YOLOKISS Self-Serve Frozen Yogurt, YOLO Vineyards & Olive Oil Company, Yolo Eyewear and Yolo Bags.
| TEN BRANDS TO WATCH IN 2013: Marketers spent close to $1.2 billion on music sponsorship alone in 2012, and that's not even counting the hundreds of millions that went into commercials featuring current songs that helped many artists impact the Billboard charts. As artists, labels, publishers and tour promoters alike continue to turn to the advertising community to help make up for budget and marketing gaps, here's a look at 10 brands that will be among the first on everyone's speed dial over the next 12 months.
| GOOGLE MUSIC'S SCAN & MATCH PROBLEM, BUT THERE'S AN EASY FIX: Google Music's new free online music locker has run into an inevitable, often popular fact of the music business: some songs have both clean and explicit versions and cloud uploading services often have a difficult time differentiating between the two. However, there is an easy fix if you want to clean-up or dirty your music.
UMG COULD BE LIABLE FOR UP TO $242 MILLION TO HMV (REPORT): According to a report in the Telegraph, Universal Music is liable for the rent paid for about 40 of the 238 HMV stores in the U.K. The obligations were transferred when the music giant acquired part of former HMV parent EMI earlier this year, the paper said. EMI guaranteed the HMV store rental agreements when it spun off the retailer as a separate business in 1998. The liabilities would only hit the full $242 million if HMV had to go into administration, and the stores couldn't find new tenants amid a challenging U.K. retail environment.
EVEN MARK ZUCKERBERG'S SISTER HAS FACEBOOK PRIVACY ISSUES : A picture that Mark Zuckerberg's sister Randi posted on her personal Facebook was posted by another person on Twitter. That didn't sit well with Randi, who tweeted that the picture was meant for friends only and that posting the private picture on Twitter was "way uncool." Turns out the user was able to see Zuckerberg's picture because they had a mutual friend. The tweets have since been taken down.
RAY COLLINS OF THE MOTHERS OF INVENTION, RIP: Ray Collins, a singer whose dispute with one guitarist led him to hire another, Frank Zappa, with whom he would go on to form the avant-garde rock group the Mothers of Invention, died on Monday in Pomona, Calif. He was in his middle 70s. Mr. Collins, who shared a love for doo-wop with Mr. Zappa, was the lead singer for the band's debut album, "Freak Out!" (1966), which mixed satirical lyrics with music that ranged from straightforward rock to atonal experimentation, and its follow-up, "Absolutely Free" (1967). He quit the band after that recording, though he returned for "Cruising With Ruben & the Jets," a doo-wop concept album, and sang on some of Mr. Zappa's later recordings.
New York Times
TAYLOR SWIFT TOPS 2012 'CELEBS GONE GOOD' LIST: Taylor Swift tops a year-end ranking of celebrity philanthropists tallied by DoSomething.org, an organization that rallies teens to get involved in social change. The 23-year-old was cited for her $4-million donation earlier this year to create a new education center at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville and "her tremendous work for young people battling cancer, among many others." Miley Cyrus came in at No. 2, for her work supporting the Saving Spot! Rescue nonprofit that finds homes for dogs in animal shelters in line to be put to death. Other pop artists who made the Top 10 are Lady Gaga (No. 4), Justin Bieber (No. 5), Pink (No. 7) and Selena Gomez (No. 9).
Los Angeles Times
LATEST NETFLIX DISRUPTION HIGHLIGHTS CHALLENGES OF CLOUD COMPUTING: For some on Christmas Eve, "White Christmas" was a blackout on Netflix. That's because problems with Amazon's cloud computing service, which provides storage and computing power for all kinds of Web sites and services, caused Netflix to go down for much of the day. As more everyday devices, appliances and even automobiles rely on services connected to the Internet, consumers expect those services to be available at all times. Yet all sorts of disruptions - harsh weather conditions or an apparent overload - can knock a service out for hours. Last month, problems with the same Amazon data center in Virginia took down Reddit, Foursquare and Heroku.
New York Times
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