Maverick Records today released a new Alanis Morissette video on America Online's proprietary service only, apparently upstaging the cable channel that turned the music business on its head once upon a time.
The video, which Morissette directed, is for the single "So Pure," off the Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie album. It will be posted online at AOL.com on Monday, and the song will be on radio stations next week, according to Maverick.
Neither MTV nor Maverick representatives could immediately be reached for comment.
The move comes as a landscape shift is underway in the music business on a number of fronts. The mainstream record business is watching its old model become outdated as music downloads gain in popularity, led by the controversial MP3 audio compression format.
Many say MP3's quick adoption has made it a de facto standard for music downloads--but the mainstream record industry dislikes the format because it allows for the easy, widespread copying of unauthorized music online.
MP3's popularity has led a number of high-profile technology firms--such as Microsoft, IBM, AT&T, and Sony, among others--to create download technologies of their own, in the hopes of offering the one that will become the standard.
In addition, the Recording Industry Association of America, which represents major U.S. record companies, launched the Secure Digital Music Initiative, which has brought music and technology firms together to create specifications for secure music downloading.
AOL has upped its interest in the budding online music business recently. Earlier this month, the online giant bought Net radio company Spinner and Net music technology firm Nullsoft for about $400 million in stock-for-stock transactions.
With its 17 million member base and its appeal to mainstream consumers--along with its moves toward offering services on handhelds and television--AOL is poised to become a force in the music business.
Morissette, for her part, appears to have more than a passing interest in the Net music space, as do several other artists. She will be a shareholder in music news, download, and community site MP3.com following its imminent initial public offering, according to a recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The company is a sponsor of Morissette's upcoming tour.