Music, Morality, and Moore's Law

from the sounds-familiar dept

The latest column from Bill Gurley talks about how it’s impossible to stop music trading. It sounds eerily like the conversation I had in a little Chinese restaurant Saturday night, so I’m wondering if he was there listening to me. The basic point he’s making is that the ease with which people will be able to copy and trade music is only going to increase at a rapid rate. Making systems that will stop that is about as close to impossible as you can get. The record companies are basically wasting their time trying to tell the tide to stop coming up the beach.

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Comments on “Music, Morality, and Moore's Law”

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~Penguin~ says:


Okay, i previewed, hit the back button and bam submission gone. I hit forward button and bam no luck. Oh well here goes again…

I found this article to be dummied to much for my taste. It spent a lot of time quoting numbers and statistics anyone with half a brain would never refute; computer speeds will get faster, internet speeds will get faster, memory will get larger and compression will make things smaller. So the central theme of the article is just old news.

Even more interesting is that the author completely misunderstands the situation. Although he took a soft line stance when he wrote, “The real issue may be that there is no technical way to stop the tidal wave that has already started.” he is claiming that the RIAA wants to “stop” music trading. Now i find this laughable. A business trying to make a profit would never want to stop something that enables their product to reach millions of consumers, they would want to control it. The RIAA doesn’t want to eliminate file transfering of music, they want control. Proof for this can be found in the settlements and law suits again, which is much more condusive to the business aspect of the mudic industry than Napster, Scour or any other free file swapping services. Even now the various music industries are just starting to develop the ability to put their client’s music on-line, so claiming that they want it “stopped” isn’t an accurate reflection of their motives.

What boggles me on this whole entire issue is that with the entire country and world moving forward at a breakneck pace into an extremely computerized world, why doesn’t the RIAA look towards securing a place in the future, rather than keeping their death grip on the past.


Mike (profile) says:

Re: Blah

Sorry about the submission problem. Apparently there’s a bit of a bug in the process which we haven’t quite figured out yet.

Definitely some very good points in your comment. I agree with you almost entirely.

The reason for my own discussion on the matter (in the Chinese restaurant) was to explain to someone exactly what I think the music industry is doing wrong… and that is they’re trying to stop this from happening, rather than working on a way to move forward with an understanding of how the world is. So, the first part of that is figuring out where the world is going, and whether or not it’s stoppable. It’s not.

I think that’s all that Bill Gurley was pointing out. Following on that, though, the conversation should continue on to what the industry ought to be doing. My point was to look at the basic economics of the situation, and see if they still have any leverage some where, and to use that… but to try to concentrate on holding back what was coming no matter what was dangerous and stupid, and likely to hurt the music industry more in the long run.

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