The Cure's Robert Smith Continues To Claim Free Doesn't Work
from the um.-but-it-does? dept
We recently pointed out the statements made by The Cure’s Robert Smith, insisting that business models involving giving away music for free, such as the one used by Radiohead, couldn’t work. This seemed rather odd, given that not only did it work fantastically well for Radiohead, we’ve been seeing it work for a lot of different bands for many years. So, to claim that it simply can’t work was blatantly false and easily proven as wrong. Given that… you might think Robert Smith would recognize the fallacy of his logic, admit he was wrong and maybe learn a little. Or not…
An anonymous reader points us to Smith’s blog post in response to the criticism of his statements where he digs in to repeat the original, easily proven as false, claim and calls those who disagree with him “cretins.” Or, rather, “CRETINS” since he uses the CAPS LOCK button to full effect (though, appears to have a faulty space bar at times). Oddly, to get around the fact that the model did, in fact, work for Radiohead, he pretends he didn’t say that it couldn’t work for Radiohead (though, that’s exactly what he did say), but claims he actually meant that it couldn’t work for everyone else. Then he brushes off Radiohead’s success by noting:
ANY FAMOUS ARTIST WITH A HUGE AND DEVOTED FAN BASE(OFTEN ARRIVED AT WITH A LITTLE HELP FROM A WEALTHY AND POWERFUL ‘PATRON’ ORTWO?) CAN AFFORD TO DO WHAT HE, SHE OR IT WANTS… INCLUDING GIVING THEIR ART AWAY AS SOME KIND OF ‘LOSSLEADER’ TO HELP ‘BUILD THE BRAND’
Masnick’s law, anyone? Even that statement is somewhat self-contradictory. If the band is “famous” with a “huge and devoted fan base” then… um… why do they need to “build the brand”?
And, then, of course, he falls into that old fallacy that we see way too often:
IF THIS ‘ART FOR FREE’ IDEA BECOMES THE CULTURAL NORM THEN HOW DO ARTISTS EARN THEIR LIVING?
It really does amaze me how people’s brains seem to stop as soon as “free” enters the picture. But, once again, for you first timers, just because you give one thing away for free, it does not mean you give everything away for free, and thus you earn your living selling those other things. But, of course, apparently anyone who uses logic and understands actual business models doesn’t count:
AND QUITE HONESTLY
AS ANYONE THAT DISAGREES WITH THIS POINT
IS UNLIKELY TO BE AN ARTIST
I DONT REALLY CARE TOO MUCH WHAT THEY THINK… !!!
Fair enough. But when plenty of actual artists are understanding this and making plenty of money in doing so, it seems rather silly to ignore the points they’re making, doesn’t it. Or… wait, is Radiohead not an artist? And, then, there’s the final sign off:
I WONDER HOW MANY OF THE PROFESSIONAL APOLOGISTS OUTTHERE WRITE THEIR SHIT FOR FREE?
Well, I don’t get paid anything specifically to write this blog. But I do get paid, in part thanks to giving away all this content for free. Just as Smith could get paid by embracing a business model where he gives his music away for free…