Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

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jdstamper
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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by jdstamper » Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:44 pm

I guess that's true for film/TV pubs and libraries as well. They generally don't tell you when they've pitched something unless it's about to get used, right? Can't you see composers emailing everybody at NBC or Speilberg's company, "Are you going ti use my music?"
Michael, you make an interesting point that makes me think about this a little differently. If we were to "go dark", could it actually be to our advantage ... that is could it increase the number and/or clout of listing companies ... would they be more inclined to list with Taxi knowing that they have anonymity? Just a thought ... Jim
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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by Len911 » Tue Jan 26, 2010 10:01 pm

I think ultimately it should be the client's decision whether they want their name held in the strictest confidence or if they are willing to have their name included in a forward notice to the member. If Taxi's position was made clear to the client as to why they liked to furnish the member with the name of the company, and the remote possibility of someone spamming them, they would be more understanding and less upset if it happened and more receptive to a resolution. The clients obviously prosper from the taxi model, as does taxi and the membership. That way no one would be totally in the dark, and if another situation occurred it might not have such an extreme outcome. I don't think the overexhuberant member(s) meant to harm anyone by their actions. perhaps they might be banned from that particular library, which might make them think before they considered spamming again.
I joined Taxi because I was too lazy to spend all my time on submission and marketing for that one in a million chance someone might listen to a song, and one in two million chance they might actually buy it. It gives me more time to make music and more of it, and if the songs move they do so on their own. Thank God, for once laziness is a virtue,lol!
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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by kevinmathie » Tue Jan 26, 2010 10:22 pm

You know, I've been thinking of this thread all evening. And in addition to getting paranoid about which libraries I may have been blacklisted by, due to some innocent but possibly offending comments I may have made here on the forum ( :P which is a whole other thread I might start), I've been thinking about what I'd want Michael to do about this problem, at least from my perspective.

It sort of all boiled down to this one question: What real, practical purpose is there for us to know who we're being forwarded to? I mean, yeah, there's the excitement of it all, and there's the temporary increased motivation, but beyond those two things, what other career-enhancing purpose is there? I can't think of any. I mean, we can't contact these companies can we, or do anything else with that information? So, other than our own personal validation and the satisfaction that someone in the "big league" is listening to our music, there's nothing to be gained from knowing who the client is.

As far as conspiracy theories go...meh...there will always be conspiracy theorists. I'm sure there are folks that say that we forum participants are all paid employees of ML to prop up the illusion that Taxi is a legit company. So, there's no real way to combat conspiracy theories. Dissatisfied people will always turn to "interesting" conspiracy theories to make sense of their own frustration.

So, Michael, I'm going to cast my vote for getting rid of naming the client in our Forward Certificates. It solves your problem, solves your clients' problem, and our careers are positively impacted due to the possible (probable?) increase of major league clients.

Kevin
Last edited by kevinmathie on Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by allends » Tue Jan 26, 2010 10:44 pm

admin wrote:The difference between professional and amateur doesn't always lie between getting paid or not for what you do. It's often more about the person you are.

Michael
This quote made my day and I thank you for it, most sincerely!

IDEA:
I would suggest that a brief, well written, to-the-point, message about professional etiquette could be appended to every e-mail notification of a forward and a boiler-plate e-mail message titled something like “What Next?” would follow every notification of a forward. A similar statement could be displayed on the page where a member’s forwards are listed.

Once this issue is drilled into our minds, perhaps the frequency of these occurrences could be reduced to a manageable level. I hope it’s just that simple.

-Allen

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by wta » Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:09 pm

Allen, we have to trust that artists will do what they've proven to do, break the rules and act outside of the industry framework... This is time proven and undisputable. You and I would do the right thing BUT it takes ONLY A FEW unstable artist (do you think with Taxi's MO there might be ONE OR TWO who fit this discription?) to kill a client, as we're seeing it right now.

Kevin has really got it... Taxi would have a far better time recruiting new clients if they were secured in the knowledge that amateur musicians didn't kmow who they are and that ONLY the professional taxi reps would be communicating with their high quality music tracks. This is the cherry on the cake! There are only benifits on NO downfalls, the WHOLE industry works this way, why should Taxi put it's good relationship with its clients on the line in a ways no other agent is willing to (and for GOOD reason)?
Taxi doesn't need to "prove" themselves to anyone, Michael's background and confirmed place in the industry PLUS the reliable testimonials and the REAL LIFE folks on this forum is EASILY enough to put ANY conspiricy to rest and if someone want's to believe any lies that are floating around, they're NOT ready for a professional relationship with the top indepentdent A&R company in the game. If Taxi was one of my marketing clients I'd be PROUD to rep this company before the world, "WHY?" because Taxi has ALL the key ingredients for sucess with the right man at the helm to do it right!

Well put Kevin,

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by brindabella » Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:45 pm

I dont think anyone has talked about doubting Taxi's credibility here. The issue is people making nuisance calls or emails to companies and this has resulted in a company withdrawing from Taxi's. I do not think keeping us in the dark as to where our music goes will solve the problem. To me is an incentive,motivation, I keep the certificate Taxi issues for a forward as a screensaver, and I when I look at my screen and it hasn't changed for a while it makes me get off my butt and start working. Everything in life is reward and punishment, you speed and you get a ticket, you are a good driver and you get an insurance discount, and when people are used to get something and you takeaway that it is seen as a punishment. Why should we get a punishment because some people dont know how to behave? And the ironic part of that is that eventually, those kind of people would leave Taxi, they are too egocentric to abide by rules.
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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by wta » Wed Jan 27, 2010 1:15 am

Brind, I totally understand what your saying. This issue is that reward that Taxi has been offering is opening the door to potential and very real major problems and this reward is not normal or usual or even warrented in the entertainment industry. The typical "system" has been set up to solve many problems and the system is typically not negociable so when a client finds out that Taxi is telling their artist who they are and those artist are contacting them "directly" it is straight from the get go raising red flags. I can say with no remorse I wouldn't use an agent that was telling their artist who I was, its considered taboo by many industry professionals. As Michael said, NOT ALL are in this headspace but its without question the rule of thumb. Many Taxi artist have never worked on that side of the industry so it may not make sense but that's just how it is and its that was for good reason. I understand that artists LIKE knowing who there music is being forwarded to, of couse they do, WHO wouldn't but the bottom line is keeping the client who's hiring the artist happy as thats best for the artist, Taxi and the clients to which I'm sure we'd all agree IS the only way to do business. Taxi has a hard enough time when they forward the music from a variety of folks and one of those gets licensed and they haven't proven to be someone how will handle that new relationship professionally and flakes out and gives Taxi black eye. That alone would give me a headache! Just imagine, Michael is forwarding music from people he can't vouch for as being professional! YIKES!!! That's why music publishers are SO fussy about what artists they represent because they are a reflection of that agent and if that artist turns out to be a full blown freakshow it'll be that agent/publisher who'll pay for it and THEN the artist IN THAT ORDER... Taxi is in a VERY difficult position at best ...
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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by t4mh » Wed Jan 27, 2010 2:19 am

Ok there HAS to be more going on here than meets the eye and probably I need some coaching on the subject. I am just begining.

Maybe I messed up but I don't really think so. I got forwarded once last year and it was some time ago, like last spring. I got the certificate and checked out the library and owner. I was REALLY PUMPED due to the owner's credits and the idea that he would be listening to my track! Regardless if he used it or not. TAXI began to work for me that day as I had made it past the screeners AND my track was going to A REAL HEAVY WEIGHT! I gave him 60 days of silence and called him up. We had a GREAT time talking and visited for an hour or more. He could have hung up on me at anytime. But he didn't. He could have said something like "I don't have time to talk a little somebody like you" but he didn't. He DID give me LOTS OF ADVICE and for me that was like throwin' gasoline on the fire! He told me "I always like to talk to the composers". Maybe this guy is the only one in the business who does like to talk but I would have a hard time believing that from my experience in music and in business.

One thing that came out of that conversation was that between us we discovered that he had not received my track on the CD that TAXI sent him. Probably a simple oversight, no big deal right? I then called TAXI and explained. They said they would take care of it but I was also told at that time to not call the client ever again and so I didn't and haven't. He hasn't called me either. I will say I am a bit hesitant to bring that issue up here on a TAXI Public Forum but then I think, nobody is perfect and I don't think TAXI claims to be anymore than I do. Did I destroy my own chances with the guy, I don't really have a sense that has happened. He probably just didn't like my track.

The thing that really comes to my mind in this conversation is that, if I'm going to do this and be successful at it, sooner or later I am thinking I will HAVE to have some sort of relationship with these businesses. Having come from a professional environment I know that relationships AND conversations must happen for business to happen. No one wants a nuisance and that sounds like what happened here to start this thread. I would not like to be left out of knowing the WHO I was forwarded to and believing that a conversation IS necessary, I have sort of a problem with being told that I can't initiate it.

Having said all this I return to my original thought and maybe I just need to have this explained to me better. I know there are a lot of folks here that are a lot further along than I am and as always, I haven't cornered the market on good ideas. But failing that, if someone doesn't want to be contacted they need to say so. Otherwise, it seems to me, they are fair game.

Let me say here in public that I sincerely appologize if I have been the cause of this or if I have destroyed anything for all TAXI members. I am thinking that this situation is the result of something recent and my situation occured quite some time ago so I don't think that I have been at fault. But if I have and deserve an ass chewin', I'm a big boy..

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by dougstronach » Wed Jan 27, 2010 7:33 am

I have to agree with Dave. Keeping forwards secret is just not going to work. For many people, joining TAXI is their first step in getting 'real' about a career in the music business. Knowing that your music is getting forwarded to 'real' companies doing 'real' business is real important. I know my first forward was very exciting and pushed me on to do more.

One company in LA that I was forwarded to and eventually landed a deal with now sends me newsletters regularly asking for new music. They're keeping in touch with me and I like that. They're not bugging me and I'm not going to ever email TAXI to complain about emails I'm getting as a result of a TAXI forward.

Why should the opposite of this situation be more annoying for the company? If TAXI has forwarded your music, then they deem your material to be suitable for inclusion in the companies catalog. This would mean a relationship with the company is a possibility and for some people that would justify a follow-up call or email. It's what we're taught to do in most music seminars - follow up, be polite but persistent. There of course will always be annoying people in the world who don't quite get how annoying they are. Dealing with all different types of people is a part of doing business in any industry.

This guy who is annoyed by an email needs to get real. We write the music, TAXI sifts through it all, finds the good stuff and sends it to the company. If there's some crap he has to deal with on the way then too bad. We all deal with crap and my guess is that the successful ones deal with it much better than the unsuccessful ones.

Let's be clear though, the companies are not doing this as a favor to TAXI or to musicians around the world - their doing it because they can find good, new music for much less than what they'd pay anywhere else. We're getting a break, they're getting a deal. Nobody is doing any favors for anyone.

I have never emailed or phoned a company that I've been forwarded to. I figure that's why I'm paying TAXI - I'll spend my time writing more music. But not everyone thinks that way and in a free world everyone can think and do as the like. If TAXI needs to make new rules then make them, but they of course will change how musicians view and work with TAXI.

TAXI is in a tricky position - trying to appear legit with all its current and prospective musicians by being as transparent as possible, but then also being able to provide a smooth flow of credible new music to legit businesses without any of the hassles that go on when companies accept unsolicited material.

It's a stickier situation than when Sticky the Stick Insect got stuck on a sticky bun :-)


Doug s.

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Re: Members Contacting Listing Companies -- Ouch!

Post by keithl » Wed Jan 27, 2010 7:48 am

This definitely is a tough one for TAXI. Maybe the focus on future newsletters is how you represent yourself?

I think it's more about what kind of presence to you want to have in this business. Anybody who thinks firing off emails to every contact address he finds in a library or a producer or whatever will find out the hard way..that is just not good business. Take a good look in the mirror. Take a good look at your web site (if applicable)...take a good look at your email address (as a business, would you rather send an email to rockinonthebeach@aol.com or contact@mynamehere.com)

These are all little things that can help you in the long run.

I think most people know to write your best stuff, hope to get forwards, when you do get a forward, just keep writing. When that deal happens, be excited. But then YOUR work starts.

1) Be professional in any response.
2) Turn around whatever material they need ASAP
3) Thank them for the opportunity
4) Ask them if they have any other music needs

You really have to add some common sense to the equation. Ask how would YOU like to be contacted if you were in their shoes, getting a bazillion pieces of music a day. Do you think they have the time to check if track 2 on CD#432 is the most smoking pan flute piece they ever heard?

Write your best music...wow them...relationships will grow from there.

It is very tough to solve this problem....but maybe some education for new members could help minimize future occurences of this type of problem.
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