Originally Posted by DrumEatDrum
Technically, true. I won't disagree.
But that is what was always said about the labels too. They take the vast percentage of the money from album sales, and then expense every last penny it took to make said album against the small percentage the artist was supposed to get. Long before the internet, plenty of bands signed record deals, sold thousands of albums, and were still broke.
The artist would usually get a large advance against future profits, and they would never have to repay that advance if sales never recouped that money. I'm not saying record labels were always fair, but many used to "develop" artists, and lose money in the process, while they made their bread and butter off of their big sellers.
The current system is ENTIRELY skewed such that the artist will always lose.