There's been so much hype in both the mobile and music industries about ringtones, that people seem to have lost sight of what's actually happening in the market -- and whether or not it's even remotely sustainable. With that in mind, it seems like both industries seem to think that because they've been able to sell a good number of ringtones at ridiculously high prices (though, way too often through trickery) that ringtones are the only place to be. So, while the recording industry continues to sue file sharers and neglect radio, everyone's talking ringtones. That leads to some bizarre promotional ideas, such as releasing a song as a ringtone first before it even hits the radios or stores (downloadable or physical). Apparently, the industry believes that exclusivity trumps promotion (or, that exclusivity somehow is the best promotion). The way the industry normally works is that you get a song out there and playing on the radio, TV (and, increasingly, whether the industry likes it or not, on file sharing networks) and use that to drive demand to get people to purchase CDs or downloads (or other assorted musician related items). However, this is the equivalent of saying that some record label decided it would launch a CD in stores first, before promoting it. Once again, it seems the recording industry has its priorities so screwed up that they're looking to make money on their own promotions, rather than using the promotions to sell something. In the long run, that seems like shrinking your own market. How many businesses charge you to view their commercials?
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