There is so much to say about all this, but it's kind of all been said already. Here's a few of the things I've been reading in preparation for talking about it on MPR this morning. MPR's other station, The Current, has some good, concrete coverage of some of the latest flap with local musicians Jeremy Messersmith (who will also be on the show on July 9) and Christian Erickson
Suffice it to say, it all started with the NPR intern post by Emily White (except it didn't, this stuff has been debated for a lot longer than some folks seem to think), and David Lowery's condescending response. The Other Emily White, a music producer, wrote a great defense of Intern Emily White. Dave Allen, himself also a musician, fanned flames while also making some sharp points.
Since lots of the discussion has centered around who gets payment, and how, for music purchases, I was very interested to note the founding last week of Any and All Records, which promises to sign any artist who wants to be signed, and in return promises "to do nothing for you. That said, we also won't cost you anything, we won't take anything from you or own anything of yours either." They seem to have signed well over 200 artists already. As a point of comparison, I also found Steve Albini's early-90s discussion of the relationships between artists and traditional label structures pretty informative.
My reading list on this topic has grown exponentially - especially since some really sharp insights do surface in the general morass of comments on a lot of these posts.
Erin McKeown - http://theclatterofkeys.
Justin Spohn - http://thisisviolence.net/
Steve Albini - http://www.electricalaudio.
Jeff Price from Tunecore - http://blog.tunecore.com/2012/
Jonathon Coulton - http://www.jonathancoulton.
Ethan Kaplan, LiveNation - http://www.blackrimglasses.
Zac Shaw - http://www.mediapocalypse.com/
NYTimes' Ben Sisario - http://mediadecoder.blogs.
Wesley Verhoeve - http://www.wesleyverhoeve.com/