As you might already know, there are a variety of new domain extensions (the .com or .net on the end of a URL) about to be approved and ".music" will be one of them. While this seems like it's perfect for an artist, band or company involved in music, there may be a hidden catch, thanks to a number of industry trade organizations.
The fact is the matter is that the RIAA, Soundexchange, the Recording Academy, ASCAP, and 38 other organizations want to be the keeper of all things .music. The problem with this is that you'll have to register with them before you're issued your .music domain, and with that comes some potential problems.
First of all, they want to make sure that you're really part of the music community before they grant the domain. No problem there, since that's what the extension is for in the first place.
The problem is that any number of things can cause you to be rejected, or even work, have your domain revoked after the fact. What if you're suspected of engaging in piracy? What if you frequent a site or even post music on Grooveshark (which is locked in legal battles with the RIAA as we speak)? What if, for whatever reason, you're deemed to be not a member of the "musical community?" Does that mean a garage band who can't draw more than 10 people to a gig risks getting their domain revoked? What if you've only sold less than a hundred downloads?
The potential for abuse outweighs the upside of having an industry gatekeeper. There are several other entities that are vying for power over the extension as well. Let's hope that it remains free just like .com, .net, .org, .tv, .us, and all the other extensions in common use today.
Help support this blog. Any purchases made through our Amazon links help support this website with no cost to you.You should follow me on Twitter for daily news and updates on production and the music business.
Check out my Big Picture blog for discussion on common music, engineering and production tips and tricks.