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Friday, October 5, 2007

Music Will be Just Like Punditry

posted by on October 5 at 10:40 AM

Hopefully, yesterday’s music downloading verdict will spark the long-overdue conversation that’s less about reactionary posturing and the digging in of ideological heels (which is definitely happening) —and more about defining the music marketplace of the future in a way that acknowledges the facts on the ground. (Those facts are these: CD sales are tanking; fans are growing up to expect music on-line; and musicians are putting it there.)

Over at Technology Liberation Front they’re saying this:

But the far more important factor is the sheer number of people who want to be rock stars. Now that the bottleneck of CD production and distribution has been removed, any musician can reach an infinite number of fans at zero cost. As a result, more and more musicians will find it in their self-interest to voluntarily give music away for free as a means of building up their fan base. Over time, consumers will get used to music being free, and at some point music will be just like news and punditry are today: the vast majority will be free and ad-supported, with a small minority continuing to try to charge money.

cross posted on Line Out.

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The best counter to this I've seen was the interview with REM's manager (I think y'all linked to this story) where he talked about hearing somebody from Evian explaining how they were competing with tap water. And yet somehow Evian stays in business.

People will under certain circumstances pay for something they get for (nearly) free. They just have to believe it has value, and buying it has to be convenient.

Posted by flamingbanjo | October 5, 2007 11:05 AM

Reactionary utopianism run rampant.

Posted by SEAN NELSON, EMERITUS | October 5, 2007 1:32 PM

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