More Research Showing How Musicians Are Better Off With File Sharing
from the keep-the-studies-coming dept
There has been plenty of research over the years that suggested musicians are not made worse off by file sharing -- with many made better off. Over at Torrentfreak, there's a slightly uneven look at some of the research, showing that most artists end up better off. They take some stabs at why this might be, but the basic reasoning isn't that hard to figure out. As we recently discussed, the growing digitization of the business has done away with some of the scarcity, and that's opened up a tremendous amount of opportunity for those who used to be unable to get anywhere with their music. Since the music industry no longer needs to just focus on a few hits at the top, the curve spreads out. The musicians who in years past would be in a huge lump of failures on the distant right side of the curve, now get spread out along the entire curve, serving their various niches with the ability to be moderately successful. In other words, the lack of scarcity, combined with the tools of promotion online make it so the large number of musicians who would have made nothing out of their music, now have a much greater chance of making something. This may result in some decreased money among the big hit makers, but the overall opportunity increases. Part of the reason the record labels are so against this, of course, is that they're used to their traditional hit-driven business, where they only make money off of a few big hits. They don't bother to realize that there's a tremendous opportunity further down the curve in helping many more musicians make themselves into modest successes. So, the next time anyone suggests that file sharing is somehow harming musicians, you might want to point out the large number of musicians whose music careers are now only possible because the costs of production, distribution and promotion (through file sharing) have become cheap enough that they can take part. It's opened up a whole new world of ways for musicians to be successful.