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Independent record label

From Academic Kids

An independent record label is a record label operating without the funding of one of the "major" record labels, which are generally defined as the handful of media corporations which have recently dominated the recorded music industry in the west. The boundaries between major and independent labels are quite blurred in practice. Some independent record labels, in particular those with successful performing artists, receive funding from major labels, and many independent labels often rely to some extent on international licensing deals, distribution agreements, and other arrangements with major record labels. Major labels may also wholly acquire independent labels.

Independent labels have been in existence for almost as long as there has been a market for recorded music. Even as the music industry has become more centralized, independent labels have continued to be a significant, if small, part of the overall market. In a number of cases, independent labels have assembled rosters of recording artists that rival those of the majors. The 1960s and 1980s are regarded as having been particularly fruitful periods for independent labels.

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Open source record label

Open source record labels are a reaction against what some musicians see as corporate control of music via means of copyright. They believe that creativity requires that musicians reappropriate and reinterpret music and sounds to enable them to create truly innovative music.

Open source record labels hold that the fight over free/libre and open content and media is a struggle over the freedoms of expression and speech, with the goal of radically opening up the possibilities of media. To this end, open source record labels attempt to release music under so-called "copyleft", a license that enables musicians to develop music collaboratively and equitably and then release it into the public domain.

Examples of open source labels

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