This isn’t the easiest read and says something about where society’s at as much as the music industry. I hate the use of NDAs as hush money, not their real purpose.
It is indeed a sad reflection of where society is at. If you have enough money/power/influence your behaviour, no matter how despicable, is irreproachable. It’s how people like Harvey Weinstein, Jimmy Saville and Philip Green got away with so much for so long.
That’s it, they’re supposed to protect against commercial theft/indiscretion. They were once an occasional feature at work, usually at the getting to know you but we need to share commercial secrets phase. These days, the moment I hear the acronym I wonder what’s been covered up, not protected.
I’ve had to sign the odd commercial NDA in my professional life, but as you say, more and more, they’re being used as a gag to cover up wealthy individuals’ personal indiscretions.
One of my worries is that you don’t even have to be hugely wealthy these days, not sure Octavian has the free cash. Often it’s to protect institutional reputations, potentially leaving the culprit free to repeat and more difficult to discipline/convict if a future victim won’t be gagged.