Human Resources
Technologies in Music 2002

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Technology in Music 2002 Syllabus

Proficiency #2

Using an instructional unit on the topic of your choice, identify at least two media in each media category (be they commercially-produced or self-produced) that could be used in the teaching of the unit.  Justify your choice of specific media in terms of how you would apply/use each in teaching the unit.  In writing this up, organization is keybe sure to identify the topic and the instructional context of the unit (e.g. length of unit, student demographics, etc.).  Relying on the ASSURE model, be sure to include a component that explains how you would evaluate the effectiveness of the unit.

Music Technology in 2000

Analysis of Learners

Objectives

Students will discuss the effect of technological developments on music and the music Industry. Students will discuss copyright issues and the effect of Internet music resources on the music industry.

Learner Analysis

Materials

VHS VCR Player

Television

VH1 Behind the Music 2000, beginning with commentary by Frank Lang, through end of segment

Web-based lesson materials

Other Internet resources as referenced in the lesson

For additional material about technological advances in the music industry, see HRR lesson "Influences of Technological Advances on Popular Music"

Teacher selected recordings of various styles of music, such as current mainstream popular music familiar to students, classical, jazz, country, new age, etc.

Procedures (est. 50 min.)

1. Play selections of popular music as students enter the classroom

2. Let music continue to play after students are seated.  As a song begins to play, lead them in a discussion about their resources for obtaining the music.  If they are familiar with the song or artist, where did they hear of them first?  Was it on the radio, through reading, from friends, at the record store, on the Internet?  If they are not familiar with the music they hear, where would they go to find out more information about the song or the artist?

3. Guide students in a brief overview of technological developments in the recording industry (see History of Rock and Roll lesson "Influences of Technological Advances on Popular Music"  @ http://www.vh1musicstudio.com/supplies/specials/rr-history-7.html for helpful resources) and how they have affected the way music has made its way into homes and is marketed.  Ask students how they think the advent of the small cassette tape in the 1960's impacted the music market (music was more portable, tape players were in cars and "boom boxes", people could hear what they wanted when they wanted, recordings became more affordable, music could reach wider audiences, people had the ability to easily copy music, etc.).

Use the following as needed for the first three lesson procedures:

As records became more and more important in the marketplace, retail sales moved from specialty stores to department stores, where only the fastest-selling items were offered.  Record shops offering the widest selection are found only in larger cities; music lovers who live far from such centers depend largely on the mail-order firms and record clubs that have sprung up since the early LP era.  In the USA both RCA Victor and Columbia (now BMG and Sony) maintain clubs that send records to members on a regular schedule, even licensing recordings of other labels for sale.  The Musical Heritage Society has been the most successful club in the USA since 1965.  Concert Hall, which began in the USA in 1946, operated clubs throughout Europe and Japan for many years.

THE RECORDING INDUSTRY AFTER 1948.  Each technological development in recording has resulted in increased competition in the marketplace and the enlargement of the recorded repertory.  Before 1948 both the recording of masters and the manufacture of records required such skill that a few companies dominated the marketplace.  In the LP era many more firms were able to make master recordings on tape and obtain pressings from factories owned by the major companies.  In the digital era master recordings of the highest quality can be made with much greater ease and pressed at any commercial disc manufacturing facility.

      Excerpted from The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians

4. Show Behind the Music 2000, beginning with commentary by Frank Lang, through end of segment

5. Lead students in a discussion about the diversity of music and music mediums currently available.  (See also Behind the Music 2000 lesson "Diversity")  What are the sources music listeners can use to find music, new and old?  Ask students to indicate through a show of hands if they have used the Internet to find or obtain music.  How useful is the Internet in finding "all" types of music?  Ask them to comment on the ease of use and convenience.

The following online resources will be helpful for use with the remainder of this lesson:

The Recording Industry Association of America at www.riaa.org, specifically:

Ask the RIAA at www.riaa.org/Ask_the_RIAA_QA.cfm#3:  questions about the Recording Industry Association of America, their stand on MP3 technology and use, starting your own Internet radio station, and much more

Q&A about the RIAA/Napster lawsuit at www.riaa.com/Napster.cfm:  thorough explanation of the reasons behind the lawsuit, copyright law information, quotes from artists, RIAA's approach to music on the Internet, consumer's rights, etc.

Napster at www.napster.com, specifically:

News articles are available through the Napster site dating back to November 1999 by clicking on "Press Room".  An article dated November 1, 1999 titled "Napster:  Music is For Sharing" can be found in the archives and is about Napster's beginnings and "good intentions"

NOTE:  The Napster site, due to restrictions placed on them through court proceedings, no longer offers any of the original "music trading" features, and at this time provides only company information, the above mentioned articles, and information about future services.

The US Copyright Office, The Library of Congress, at

http://lcweb.loc.gov/copyright/

6. Using the resources above as needed, provide students with further information about copyright issues, the RIAA's viewpoint, Napster, etc., and lead them in further discussion about the Napster company and Web site, Napster.com and other similar web sites.  What are the reasons behind the RIAA's lawsuit?  Ask students to suggest reasons why Napster was found guilty of copyright infringement, and why some might not consider them guilty.  What are the recording artists' concerns? 

7. Lead students in a discussion of the negative effects of Web sites such as Napster on the music industry, the music, and the artists.  Why is downloading music for free a problem for recording artists and the music industry?   When cassette tapes were first available, was there similar concern that people would make recordings without paying for the music?   Some people feel that sites offering music for free download are "sticking it to the labels", or hurting the finances of the large record companies.  Do the students think this is true?  Who else might be "hurt" along with the record companies (artists, consumers)?  Do these sites inhibit record sales, or increase them?  Could they prevent artists from creating new music because of financial loss, lack of control over their music, etc.? 

8. Ask students to comment on the possible positive aspects of sites such as Napster, and music on the Internet in general.  How could the Internet be a good promotional tool for recording artists to gain exposure for their music?  Is a balance between using the Internet for music sharing and other activities, and not breaking copyright law, possible?  What could be done to achieve that balance?

9. Lead students in a discussion about what the future may hold for the music industry and the consumers.  What role could the Internet play, and what other technologies might be on the horizon?  Historically, what seems to be the most likely "next step"? 

Extension:

 

Ask students to research copyright law as it pertains to fair use of intellectual property, as well as look into the Napster debate a bit further.  Arrange for a mock "trial" between an Internet company providing free music downloads and a "musical artist".  Stage the case or debate during class, choosing students to play the parts of lawyers, judge, jury, etc.  This activity can be coordinated with the Social Studies/Humanities, or Debate teacher.

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