Neil Young: Piracy Is The New Radio (But The Quality Sucks)

from the well,-there's-that... dept

Neil Young apparently isn't too concerned about copyright infringement these days, according to his comments at the D: Dive into Media conference:
It doesn't affect me because I look at the internet as the new radio. I look at the radio as gone. [...] Piracy is the new radio. That's how music gets around. [...] That's the radio. If you really want to hear it, let's make it available, let them hear it, let them hear the 95 percent of it.
Of course, that's a bit of a reverse from back when he was angry that YouTube wasn't paying him money when people uploaded his songs. Still, it's good to see him come around to the view that infringement is, basically, a new form of radio. Artists like Chuck D have been making that argument for over a decade.

Young is still concerned... but about the fact that the quality of MP3 files sucks. He'd prefer technologies that provide a much fuller sound:
Steve Jobs was a pioneer of digital music, his legacy was tremendous. [...] But when he went home, he listened to vinyl.

Filed Under: neil young, piracy, quality, radio


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  1. icon
    Rich Fiscus (profile), 2 Feb 2012 @ 8:58am

    On one hand, as an audiophile I'm sympathetic to Young's complaints. At the same time, his track record on providing high quality audio is a business model disaster. I consider that a shame since I happen to be a big Neil Young fan, especially his Crazy Horse releases.

    He has already begun releasing his back catalog on Blu-ray to maximize sound quality, but there's no chance I could (or would) pay $35 per album or $300 for a 10 disc set. Especially when he seems to have made a point of leaving some songs out.

    That's a ripoff even compared to HDtracks, where I can buy FLAC downloads which aren't infested with DRM. With most albums costing $18 ($23 for a double album), I still consider their prices too high. But at least they are trying to make their product more compelling. You can even spend an equally ridiculous $2.50 to buy most tracks individually if that's what you prefer.

    The bottom line is this. Neil Young really only pays lip service to expanding the popularity of high quality formats. Considering most people can't tell the difference, making it more expensive and generally less accessible has exactly no chance of doing that.

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