While many figures in the music industry have been highly critical of YouTube's policies regarding payment and policing of music on the company's site, few have been more so than veteran manager and executive Irving Azoff.
Earlier this week, Azoff called the company's practices with regard to intellectual property "really evil," and in June, he wrote a long open letter that said in part: "YouTube, ask yourself this question: If you are paying so well and providing such a great service to artists, then why is there discord between you and the creative community? You can blame the labels and publishers ... But the root of the problem here is you: You have built a business that works really well for you and for [parent company] Google, but it doesn’t work well for artists. If you think it is just the labels and publishers who are complaining, you are wrong."
With the announcement Wednesday (Sept. 28) that longtime executive Lyor Cohen -- formerly of Warner Music, Def Jam Records and Rush Management -- would be appointed YouTube's global head of music, Billboard reached out to Azoff for comment. His response was one of encouragement and optimism: