Reporters' Roundtable: Michael Robertson on today's music industry

Robertson has made a career out of attacking the music industry, first with, and more recently with radio recording service CNET digital media reporter Greg Sandoval also joins us.

Today we're talking about the music industry and how the Internet has affected it. But mostly we're doing this particular episode since I got Michael Robertson to be a guest. He's has made a career out of attacking old, established industries, first by starting the digital music company, which CNET actually acquired in 2003. Michael also started Lindows, a Linux operating system company clearly targeting Microsoft; Gizmo5, a VoIP company aimed at the telcos, and most recently, launched during the Demo conference. It's TiVo for radio.

Also on today: Greg Sandoval, CNET reporter and Media Maverick blogger. Greg covers digital media disruption.



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Some of our discussion points Michael, let's have the pitch.

Related: Rafe's review of

Greg, you've been covering the music industry for a while, your take?

Discuss issues, like audio quality, podcasts.

Rafe, can you ask how artists are compensated on the replays on

The radio business: Behind the times? Didn't Clear Channel just buy an Internet music company?

Let's talk about the current darlings of music, at least among consumers: Internet custom radio stations: Pandora,, Spotify. Michael, you've written about Pandora's upcoming IPO, tell us more.

Let's talk about music "lockers."

YouTube offers all the music we want for free. Impact of this?

What about Rhapsody, Napster, Rdio? Will the supscription model work?

I heard someone describe the recording industry as "a minor blip in the history of music." Performing used to be how musicians earned their livings, not selling recordings. Are we moving back to that?

Michael, your advice on taking on big industries?

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