How Not To Treat Customers

As I was working on the previous post, I spent some time on Amazon checking out the comments on the new Dave Matthews Band record, Stand Up.

Normally you’d find about six or seven comments, all talking about the music.

In this case, most of the reviews are about the DRM system on the CD, not the music.

The music reviews are pretty bad too.

I don’t agree with the music reviews, I think its a good album, maybe not their best, but we have it in heavy rotation and like it a lot.

So I wonder if the fact that Dave Matthews put out a CD that you can’t rip music off of, you can’t get onto your iPod, and insults the fan base with its obnoxious digital rights management system has anything to do with the bad reviews.

Hard to say, but it sure doesn’t help.

I really have to wonder who is advising Dave Matthews on this stuff.  He has a rabid fan base, the kind that the Greatful Dead had. And yet he is adopting bad practices on the digital side.  He puts DRM on his CDs.  And his music isn’t widely available on digital music services like Rhapsody.

Someone should have a talk with him about this stuff.

UPDATE: As usual, a reader says it better.  I may not be able to automatically move comments up to the front page, but I can do it manually.  So here is Dan’s take on this issue.  This is what the music business doesn’t understand but they will someday.

It really was distrubing for me, a long time Dave Matthews fan, to hear
that his cd was locked down with some DRM. The music industry still
believes that they can "force" people to do it their way, instead of
giving people what they want. I don’t want a music on a cd, I want it
on my ipod. If I can’t do that, I’m not a happy customer. A friend who
purchased the CD before me, told me "not to bother," because he
couldn’t get it on his ipod. He told me to just download it off
limewire instead, where not only it was FREE, but it also worked with
all mp3 players. So here is a case where the free version wins, because
not only is the cost great but it is so much more convenient. I
would’ve gladly paid for the CD, but someone trying to control what I
do with my music just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
The moral of the story: Not only did the DRM prevent or annoy paying
customers, but it also was unable to stop someone from ripping the CD
anyway and sticking it on limewire.

#VC & Technology