(CelebrityAccess News Service) – While the RIAA is attempting to reign in music on college campuses and prosecute students for sharing music, StreamCast Networks Inc., developers of Morpheus, the popular peer-to-peer file-sharing communications technology, launched a free college concert series. The Morpheus Share the Music – Have a Voice Tour kicked-off on September 29, initially visiting six West Coast University campuses with live concerts featuring recording artists Audio Karate, Antifreeze and FL.
"Since our users can't compete head-on with the recording industry's lobbying efforts in Washington, we believe the only way for our users to win is by leveraging the power of the 63 million file-sharing Americans at the voting booth," said Michael Weiss, CEO of Los Angeles based StreamCast Networks. "The next battle will move from the court house to Capitol Hill and we believe grassroots events are an effective forum to drive voter registration and to inform students about using technology responsibly and in a non-infringing manner."
The free concerts are being coordinated with local University political committees and Internet advocacy groups at each campus to ensure that students are encouraged to register to vote and actively contact their congressional representatives to voice their opinions on issues that affect them. The tour dates include:
September 29 UC San Diego Price Center
September 30 UC Irvine Student Center Terrace
October 2 Cal State Los Angeles Free Speech Area
October 6 UC Santa Barbara Storke Plaza
October 8 UC Berkeley Lower Sproul Plaza
October 10 UC Davis East Quad
Additional dates, colleges and artists for the 2004 portion of the Morpheus Share the Music – Have a Voice College Concert Tour will be announced by year-end. Morpheus software is available for free download at www.morpheus.com. Kung Fu Records' national recording artists Audio Karate and Antifreeze will be performing on the West Coast portion of the tour along with independent band FL.
Audio Karate, Antifreeze and FL have authorized Morpheus to encourage its users to download select songs and freely share them with others throughout the Internet.
"What do I care? It is CD burning that may hurt my business," said Kung Fu Records' owner Joe Escalante, when asked what he thought about Morpheus and file-sharing. "File-sharing is just
a bunch of music fans getting even more into music. I don't have a problem with it, and they're taking my bands on tour to get the word out. I love these guys."
"It's about time college students heard from more than just the RIAA propaganda machine," said Morpheus' VP Marketing Gary Nuell. "By sponsoring a free concert tour on campus, Morpheus hopes to inform students about opportunities to have a voice in the American political process and urge them to contact their congressional representatives,"
The tour will continue in 2004 at dozens of college campuses across America, giving students an opportunity to actively voice their support for technological innovation and file-sharing to their Congressional representatives. In addition to providing free music from leading and independent artists, the Morpheus Tour is a grassroots effort to encourage students to register to vote and have their voices heard.–Bob Grossweiner and Jane Cohen