Radiohead Tells Fans To Name Their Own Price For Latest Album Downloads; Gives Them A Reason To Pay

from the new-business-models dept

The band Radiohead is apparently coming out with a new album; the first after its original record deal was completed. It appears that, like many other musicians, they're realizing that the traditional recording industry business model doesn't quite make sense for them. While there was some buzz about an apparent hoax website about the band's new album, it turns out the real thing is a bit more interesting. That's because Radiohead is doing two smart things. It's telling fans they can name their own price for digital downloads. You just pay the band however much you think the downloads are worth and they'll be happy. But that's not all (though, that's what most folks are focused on). Rather than just offering up the content, they're also trying to give people a reason to actually buy something else. In this case, it's a "discbox," which will include the new album on both CD and vinyl, as well as an additional CD of seven extra songs and photos, artwork and lyrics. The whole thing will be packaged in a nice container. In other words, the band is following in the footsteps of folks like Trent Reznor, in realizing that the music is promotional for other stuff -- and you can still sell stuff if you make it worthwhile. In this case, Radiohead isn't really selling the "music." After all, you can get that for free. They're selling the full collection of stuff that comes with the music. Funny how it's the musicians, and not the record labels, who seem to realize that adding value and getting people to pay for it is a business model that beats suing fans.

Filed Under: business models, music
Companies: radiohead


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  1. identicon
    Mr Ken, 12 Oct 2007 @ 2:27pm

    I’m tired of reading comments by people who have bought into the media propaganda that “big labels” and the RIAA are evil. Since when is being against theft deemed such an offense? If you owned an apple stand and person after person came up and kept stealing your apples, you tell me you wouldn’t do any thing to stop it? Or would you say, “hey, they stole my product, oh wait, she’s a grand mother, it’s ok, take it all, take all my stuff!”

    Because Lars Ulrich has become a successful multi-millionaire he should relinquish his ownership of his creations and just give everthing away? Nonsense! If you murder someone it doesn’t matter if you are a grandmother or a college student, you are still accountable to the law. Do you think the RIAA should target only certain types of people to sue (non-grand mothers and college students) or should they just apply the laws of theft equally? Stealing is against the law in every country. Why is it OK for computer companies to sue people who pirate their software and the Movie industry to sue people who pirate their movies and not OK for the music industry to protect the theft of their products?

    These are all rhetorical questions of course, most people here don’t have the mental capacity or common sense to see all sides of an issue and therefore have the inability to apply rational, objective critical thinking to their decision making and formation of opinions.

    If you can rationalize that stealing music is OK and is different from stealing apples because the big bad record labels are already rich and are mean evil people for seeking legal remedies for the theft of their goods then it’s a complete waste of time to try and debate the issues with you.

    Well, u are going way off the topic. What i seen discussed is the fact that

    1)artist are being taken advantage of financially by the major labels, and musically as to the music they make and touring like mad to make ends meet.

    2)how established artists could go independent of label companies via the new media and start a apprenticeships system to bring up new talents

    As to your point raised about "stealing music" obviously morally and financially it is "wrong", everyone knows that, but the industry has to deal with what the people want. And what people want is more value for money, lower cost of the product, easier digital music for their ipods and computers which sums up the two points mentioned above.

    And lastly, insulting others "mental abilities" to make a point doesn't make you smarter, it's just make people dislike you. Nobody has the ability to see all side of everything, unless you are involved in the music business as a artist, music label employee and a consumer, then you can safely say all side of the issue, otherwise you are just outside looking in. How's that for critical thinking?

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