SECURE DIGITAL MUSIC INITIATIVE ANNOUNCED During a recent Webcast press conference, leaders from the worldwide recording industry announced the formation

SECURE DIGITAL MUSIC INITIATIVE ANNOUNCEDDuring a recent Webcast press conference, leaders from the worldwide recording industry announced the formation of the Secure Digital Music Initiative (SDMI), a framework to work with the technology community to create a voluntary digital music security specification by this fall.

The open specification will protect copyrighted music in all existing and emerging digital formats and through all delivery channels. The initiative, which has been in planning for some time, was announced by Strauss Zelnick, president and CEO of BMG Entertainment; Ken Berry, president of EMI Recorded Music; Thomas D. Mottola, chairman and CEO of Sony Music Entertainment; Doug Morris, chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group: Bob Daly, chairman and co-CEO, Warner Bros. and Warner Music Group; Terry Semel, chairman and co-CEO of Warner Bros. and Warner Music Group; Hilary Rosen, president and CEO of the Recording Industry Association of America; and Jason Berman, chairman-elect and chief executive of the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry.

Spearheaded by the SDMI Forum, the initiative hopes to achieve three objectives. It will answer consumer demand for convenient access to quality recordings, ensure copyright protection for artists' work and enable technology and music companies to build successful businesses.

The SDMI will be an open forum for all commercial companies significantly involved in technologies relating to digital music. Participating companies will be encouraged to bring their approaches to digital music security and to work together to establish and document an open architecture and specification for protecting music.

Aside from major and independent record companies, many technology companies declared their support for the initiative, including AOL, AT&T, IBM Lucent, Matsushita, Microsoft, RealNetworks, Sony Corporation and Toshiba. More information about the SDMI can be found on the RIAA's Web site at

SPARS "TRACKING THE LEGACY" PROJECTThe Society of Professional Audio Recording Services announced plans to produce a series of video programs documenting the history of SPARS and the development of the recording studio industry in North America. The series of programs coincides with the 20th anniversary of the creation of SPARS.

The project, entitled "Tracking the Legacy...20 Years," will be released on DVD and premiere during the AES convention in the year 2000. It will feature interviews with key figures in the industry, including many past presidents of SPARS, and recent footage of other personalities central to the evolution of the recording industry.

Quantegy Corporation is the Cornerstone Platinum Sponsor for the series, allowing SPARS to begin immediate production. For information on Platinum, Gold, Silver and Friends of SPARS sponsorships, contact SPARS executive director Shirley Kaye at 800/771-7727.

UPCOMING SHOWSThe 33rd SMPTE Advanced Motion Imaging Conference takes place February 25-27 at the Omni Rosen Hotel in Orlando, Fla. The conference theme is Innovation, Implementation and Operation: The Challenges of Change. There will be two days (Feb. 25-26) of program sessions headed by Clyde D. Smith, Speer Worldwide Digital Consulting. A seminar by Oliver Peters on Systems Interfaces, Networking and Connectivity will conclude the event on Feb. 27. For further information visit or call 914/761-1100.

POST/LA 99, a seminar and conference focusing on post-production, visual F/X, Digital TV, HDTV and DVD, will be held February 25-27 at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. The conferences will be chaired by Paula Parisi. For exhibit information call 323/654-6530. For information on conferences and registration forms visit

Musikmesse Prolight and Sound, an international trade fair for musical instruments, sheet music, lighting, sound and event technology, occurs March 3-7 in Frankfurt, Germany. For information about seminars, lectures, workshops, exhibits and events visit

Canadian Music Week takes place in Toronto from March 3-7. Now in its 16th year, CMW includes a live music festival occurring in 35 different venues over four days, a conference (this year's international spotlight is on Europe) and an exhibition featuring new technology and services for the music, multimedia, Internet and recording markets. Call 416/695-9236 or visit

Get ready for the best breakfast burritos in the world, when the 13th annual South By Southwest show opens in Austin, Texas. The Film Conference (March 12-16) and Film Festival (March 12-20) feature a three-day industry trade show, plus panels, workshops and the screening of 150 films from around the world. The Interactive Festival (March 13-16) features keynote speakers Mark Cuban, Michael Wolff and Philip Glass, an Open House allowing attendees to visit Austin multimedia production facilities, panels and more. The Music Conference and Festival (March 17-21) features more than 80 panels on all aspects of the music business, a keynote address by Lucinda Williams, a trade show and performances by hundreds of bands at Austin's nightclubs. For registration information and other inquiries visit

The International Recording Media Association Executive Forum takes place March 10-14 at the Ritz Carlton, Amelia Island, Florida. The forum, entitled Management Strategies for the Future of Digital Entertainment, offers a DVD production midyear update, executive skills workshops, European Recording Media Symposium and more. Visit or call 609/279-1700 for more information.

Synergetic Audio Concepts Inc.'s Sound Training Seminars are happening across the country now through November. "A Week of Audio Training" is divided into three seminars: System Setup, System Design and System Operation. For more information call 800/796-2831 or visit

From the producers of LDI, the ExpoLatina tradeshow combines cutting-edge technology and up-to-the minute entertainment industry information. The workshops are from May 4-7 and exhibits run from May 5-7 at the Miami Beach Convention Center in Miami Beach, Fla. Attendees will have the opportunity interact with professionals already involved in Latin American projects and receive first-hand reports from the front lines of the Latin American entertainment industry. For information on events, seminars and how to exhibit or register, visit or call 303/741-2901.