by Mike Masnick
Thu, Nov 8th 2007 4:03am
You didn't have to be particularly insightful to realize a while back that the traditional recording industry was in trouble if it kept traveling down the self-destructive path of suing music fans and shutting down unique and innovative distribution tools. However, it appears that the folks on Wall Street are just starting to figure it out. Apparently, the recent defections of Madonna, Radiohead and other big name acts has Wall Street analysts finally suggesting that the recording industry's future isn't very bright, and thus downgrading the labels' prospects. The thing is, they should have realized that long ago. The big name act defections are simply the end result of a long chain of strategic blunders, despite any number of people presenting more reasonable plans forward. Again, this is focused solely on the record labels, not the overall music industry -- which is thriving. In fact, the record labels have had every opportunity to embrace these new tools and be a big part of online promotions -- but they chose not to. One would hope that with even Wall St. analysts telling them their strategy is wrong the record labels might wake up to the opportunity they've thrown away, but the labels themselves (with the possible exception of EMI -- which was recently taken over by private equity folks who seem to realize what's going on) have given no indication of any significant change in strategy.
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