New Filesharing Index Shows Filesharing Is Now Mainstream

from the you-can't-fight-culture dept

By now, many of you have probably read about Musicmetrics' new Digital Music Index. Musicmetrics took a whole bunch of filesharing data and approximated the location of each downloader in order to get a better understanding of who shares music. What it found isn't really surprising. A whole lot of people download music. While that in itself is marginally interesting, what is even more interesting is the idea that music filesharing has become mainstream.

With the numbers and locations that the index shows, you can see that despite the harsh penalties imposed on those caught filesharing, people still don't care.
The data shows just how mainstream filesharing is now. It isn't just members of Anonymous sitting behind their Macbooks downloading the obscure doom metal of Sunn O)))) the culprits are your next door neighbours, your relatives, your own kids and perhaps (probably) even you. That's the problem for the record labels who, along with the government, have tried to stigmatise the practice as much as possible. But those who have grown up getting whatever music they want for free are not suddenly going to become nostalgic vinyl-heads who are willing to pay £11.99 for a CD – to them it makes no sense and the rose-tinted memories of buying a physical record from an actual person don't exist. And the message that filesharing is stealing and equal with nicking a car doesn't hold much water when so many people are busy doing it.
If so many people are filesharing despite the best efforts of groups like BPI to demonize the practice, what is there to be done? What do the actual musicians think? Well, this is where another interesting aspect of the index comes in. Not only does the index report on the location of those sharing, it also indexed the most downloaded artists. Using this data, Musicmetrics found that Ed Sheeran was the most downloaded artist in all of the UK. So what does he think? It helps him sell tickets.
I've sold 1.2 million albums, and the stat is that there's 8 million downloads of that as well illegally.

Nine million people have my record, in England, which is quite a nice feeling.

I'm still selling albums, but I'm selling tickets at the same time. My gig tickets are like £18, and my albums £8, so ... it's all relative.
If the record labels and the BPI were correct, Ed here would be slowly dying in a gutter somewhere, not selling concert tickets at £18 a pop. But the fact remains, he is. He is succeeding because these filesharers are becoming fans and want to support him. But why do they download instead of buy? What is stopping them? There are too many barriers or not enough options according to the Guardian.
iTunes has been successful but it depends on a user having an Apple product to put the music on after they've paid for it, and an average kid doesn't have money lying about for an iPhone. Streaming sites like Spotify for music and Netflix, which offers a similar service for film and TV, are an interesting idea and growing rapidly, but at present they are still nowhere near popular enough to challenge torrents, filesharing and the attraction of free music.
The recording industry has itself to blame here. With the high licensing fees it requires from online services like Pandora and Spotify, these services just can't grow to where they can actually compete. This is holding back the music industry more than it helps it. If people can't get the music they want from legal services, they will go to something else that is culturally accepted even if it is not legal.

We have already considered what an alternate reality would look like if the music industry had actually accepted change and innovated instead of following its current fight-and-impede approach. By sticking with its current approach of fighting the will of fans, the industry has not only left money on the table, but has made itself culturally obsolete. The fans have already moved on from what the record industry is offering to something better. They have built up a culture around filesharing, and that culture has become mainstream.


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  1.  
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    Atkray (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 11:22am

    As I read this I couldn’t help but think about the “Wild West of the internet” claims we have so often heard.

    Then I was reminded of traveling across Nevada when I was younger and you would have to go through the small towns with their speed traps where one mile per hour over the posted limit (usually 25 or under, and on a sign partially blocked by a tree) would get you a ticket. I suspect they made lots of money with this practice as most travelers were unlikely to return to argue their case in court and would just mail in the requested fine amount.

    Then we built interstate free- ways around them.

     

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  2.  
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    Ninja (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 11:57am

    Amazing! It's a written and empirically tested proof of what I see around me. Every1 downloads music. My parents download music and ask me to help them with it and they have been exposed to all sorts of anti-piracy educational campaign. I never preached my file sharing spirit at home and well, there they are. Sharing! They still buy the CDs due to the same reason I'd buy (if the MAFIAA had not made me very angry): to have it, to be closer to the artist somehow. They go to shows as I go, they are even starting to get in my donation mood (donate directly to the artist and screw the CDs). You know, it feels good to support your star.

    It is a shame the MAFIAA refuses to understand that.

    Come on trolls come criticize what's already mainstream. Your whining won't change a thing.

     

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  3.  
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    Ninja (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 12:00pm

    Re:

    That.

    I've lost count how many times the ip-trolls came with the ominous warning that the “Wild West of the internet” days were counted. Right. We are waiting for you to contain the tidal waves ;)

     

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    Zakida Paul (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 1:51pm

    What do the actual musicians think?

    Here's one who doesn't really care and disagrees with his label's attempts to sue people who illegally downloaded his album.

    Jon Scaffer of Iced Earth

    http://www.classicrockmagazine.com/news/iced-earth-against-century-medias-fan-lawsuits/

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 1:52pm

    Re: Re:

    The ironic thing is that if they made smart business decisions it wouldn't matter much.

     

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    Zakida Paul (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 1:54pm

    Re: What do the actual musicians think?

    Schaffer.

    Damn my dyslexic fingers

     

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    Nax, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 1:55pm

    Soon no one will buy music

    I have a daughter that is 17 and listens to music on her iPhone all the time. She has never bought nor asked for a CD or a digital song. She also doesn't download illegally. All she does is stream from YouTube or Pandora or radio apps. Her friends are the same way. At their age, where music is one of the most important things between them, they can't even fathom buying a song for 99 cents. Those days are gone and are never coming back. But they all love going to the concerts. Music should be thought of as a free advertisement for a live concert.

     

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    sehlat (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 1:55pm

    To Paraphrase Sun Tzu

    "Supreme excellence in the art of marketing lies in giving your customers reasons to WANT to buy from you."

    Remember this item in an earlier post on this blog?

    4. DO I WANT TO PAY FOR IT? (YES/NO)

    Suppliers that give good reasons to want to buy will inevitably find the majority of the decisions at stage 4 will be "yes."

    I speak from personal experience in this. I have two accounts on an ebook site run by a major publisher. One of them has free access to literally everything they publish, with unlimited download privileges. The other one is under an assumed ID with no special privileges.

    Anybody care to guess why that second account exists? Hint: the word "insist" is in the reason.

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 1:57pm

    Dear MAFIAA: GO HOME. YOU'RE THROUGH.

    The MAFIAA had more chances for decades than any one group deserves and blew it totally (it would be hard to write a plot where one group blows it more thoroughly).

    No middlemen (which is all MAFIAA is), no amount of money, no amount of corruption and no government has ever held progress back (their idiotic chosen tactic) for more than a blink of the eye and it's not about to start now.

    The ship has sailed without them.

    They'll win a few battles but will lose the entire war.

    End of story.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 1:57pm

    the biggest problem with the entertainment industries is the fear of losing control. if they were to go with the flow, be more flexible, rather than rigid in their attitude of rejecting progress and the future because they dont like it, they would still be accepted.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 2:03pm

    Re:

    Yep they'd have been even bigger than before also.

     

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    Gwiz (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 2:15pm

    Kinda of funny. I clicked on the Guardian article and near the bottom was another link to a Forbes article by Timothy B. Lee that caught my eye that concerns the Sky is Rising report.

    And wouldn't you know it, down at the bottom is a comment from our old friend Mr. Lowery bashing the Sky is Rising because it was "paid for by the CCIA which is basically google."

    LOL. Fun stuff.

     

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    BentFranklin (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 2:28pm

    I would feel more sympathy for the rightsholders if they weren't so busy trying to extend their rights over anything and everything, by which I mean attacking public domain, fair use, and prior art. In the face of this behavior, downloading isn't merely justified, it's almost required as a political act of defiance, and is pretty much the only thing that someone without much power can do.

    On the other hand, the argument that ticket sales are increasing is nice, but not convincing. TechDirt regularly trots out the Dickens story, where Dickens was being copied extensively in the States, so he went on a personal tour of the States and made his money that way. Which is nice, but then when he was touring he wasn't writing another novel. What Dickens novel is the world missing because he had to tour instead of getting paid for his books? That didn't promote the arts and sciences.

     

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    sehlat (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 2:44pm

    Re: Dear MAFIAA: GO HOME. YOU'RE THROUGH.

    "will lose"?

    They've already lost. Making your customers hate your guts is a really lousy business model.

     

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    sarc bob, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 2:59pm

    So? That doesn't matter.

    All this means is that there are more people to throw in jail. Behind a LARGER paywall.

    Paywall paywall paywall law paywall I hate libraries paywall I love John Steele paywall.

     

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    Milton Freewater, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 3:16pm

    Re: What do the actual musicians think?

    "Here's one who doesn't really care and disagrees with his label's attempts to sue people who illegally downloaded his album.

    Jon Scaffer of Iced Earth

    http://www.classicrockmagazine.com/news/iced-earth-against-century-medias-fan-lawsuits/"

    Hear hear, Zakida. I wonder what Lacuna Coil thinks. This Century Media situation is ugly - a rightsholder is actively trying to poison the relationship between artists and fans.

     

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    Milton Freewater, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 3:29pm

    There's no reason to buy, regardless of whether you share

    "But why do they download instead of buy? What is stopping them? There are too many barriers or not enough options according to the Guardian."

    Newspaper and magazine reporters desperately want to believe that people could still be convinced to buy newspapers and magazines, and that's reflected in their stories about buying music and movies.

    Most people I know don't download and don't buy either. It's not one versus the other.

    It helps that Ed Sheeran and Drake - two of the most shared artists in the UK and US - have openly approved the file-sharing of their albums. People may just be sharing them because they know the artists are OK with it. If the artists disapproved, the fans would listen to someone else.

     

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  18.  
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    Michael Becker (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 3:31pm

    Re: What do the actual musicians think?

    Man, I had no idea Century Media was doing that. Metal was built on the free sharing of music. What a bunch of douche nozzles.

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 3:39pm

    You wouldn't download a car...

    No I wouldn't....
    I'd download a couple dozen of them along with several luxury mansion several yachts and a few jets....

    ;-p

     

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  20.  
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    Anonymous Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 3:53pm

    Re: Re: Dear MAFIAA: GO HOME. YOU'RE THROUGH.

    I wonder if we could put a date on that loss? Ya know, like VJ Day or date Lee surrendered to Grant, or etc.

    Could be another holiday that isn't just national, but world wide.

     

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    Tunnen (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 4:19pm

    You wouldn't download a pink slip...


    =P

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 4:23pm

    Re: Re: Dear MAFIAA: GO HOME. YOU'RE THROUGH.

     

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  23.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 4:25pm

    Re: Re: Re: Dear MAFIAA: GO HOME. YOU'RE THROUGH.

    your

     

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  24.  
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    Ninja (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 4:30pm

    Amusingly, the trolls are silent on this one as I thought they would be while trying to process this in their tiny underdeveloped brains.

    Hopefully once they understand it can't be stopped we can actually do what Mike has been trying for years: propose and discuss business models that can monetize on file sharing or rather, despite file sharing.

     

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  25.  
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    Ninja (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 4:36pm

    Re: Re: What do the actual musicians think?

    That. IT was mainly underground and my first contacts with shitloads of metal groups was via friends sending me mp3. Shameful indeed.

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 5:38pm

    Re:

    How do you know he wasn't writing while touring?

     

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  27.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 6:03pm

    Re:

    It's the quiet before the storm. The stormtroopers with their threats and their treaties. Ah, the good old days - when you could suckle the teet of government and actually get something.

     

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  28.  
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    JMT (profile), Sep 19th, 2012 @ 6:11pm

    Re:

    I laughed at the commenter stating "...you can’t use the % spent of entertainment in a music (or film) business argument because it includes video games." These guys really don't understand what they're competing against.

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 6:49pm

    Re:

    Oh Ninja, you frikken git. Nobody is on 24 hours per day (except Mike and his toadies).

    Look, this is actually the issue that the record labels have been fighting all along. The idea is that there is a tipping point where more people get their music from piracy than from purchase or legal sources. It's been coming, and the entire fight over piracy is to try to stop this from happening.

    The real issue is: what happens next? See the ongoing struggle most pirate apologists have is that they know that the content being pirated the most is the stuff from the labels. Love hate relationships at it's best, the stuff they dream of comes from the companies they hate. They have spent so much time trying to kill those companies and wipe their business model away, without really considering what comes next.

    My thought is that the next generation is going to be mostly existing acts touring, releasing a single song from time to time, and resting on their laurels. Smaller acts will try to horn in, but without a true orderly national / international distribution system, musical taste will sink down to being a very regional thing, filled with flash fads and noisy memes. In the long run, you lose out, because you no only bit the hand that fed you, you chewed it's arm off.

    Good luck with it.

    Remember, music is not only music, it's a social language. When you kill the language, you kill the social. People can't talk to each other if they don't talk the same language.

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 7:11pm

    "iTunes has been successful but it depends on a user having an Apple product to put the music on after they've paid for it, and an average kid doesn't have money lying about for an iPhone"

    Perhaps the Guardian needs to do a little more research.

    I have quite a bit of stuff on itunes and I can play it on any device.


    I didn't buy music before CDs, but then I decided to buy one per month and it just became a big hassle.I don't have the time or patience to go to the store find parking and go sort through 1000's of CDs to find something that I didn't know I was looking for....I stopped at ten.

    Then the internet hit, and then itunes ,and since then I have bought about $600.00 worth, and downloaded more from other sources...so before the internet, about $60.00 in my entire life. After the internet, ten times the amount.

    Don't they understand that people don't buy CDs anymore?
    Not because they can get it for free, but it's just so dammed inconvenient and pointless!

    I still have the ten CDs, and even though they're in itunes now, I never listen to them anymore.
    My taste have changed. My choices are unlimited.I don't buy music because of the label.Never did.Nobody does.
    Today if an artist is any good,they don't need a label.
    The internet will find THEM.

     

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  31.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 7:34pm

    Re: Re:

    PIRACY! KILL THEM! HELP US!

    Are you serious with that drivel?

    What happens next has already happened, genius.

    What the record labels have been fighting all along is the battle to ensure profit in the face of and in spite of progress.

    We. Will. Rip. The. Core. Of. Their. Being. To. Shreds.

    Until such a time that they'd like to actually engage with reality in a productive manner that is, of course... maybe.

    "Orderly distribution" - What you imply with that is complete and utter fucking nonsense. Wake the fuck up. Distribution is light-fucking-speed. You stand a better chance by trying to prove the universe is an illusion.

    The language you speak of is an evolving one - the one you allude to is no longer spoken. It is, simply, ignored.

    Finally, that tipping point, that is nothing more than a self-inflicted gunshot wound to a shrinking set of testicles. Your actions, their actions, have had the unfortunate result of rendering themselves not fuckable. e.g. the number of people that give a fuck about your fuck is dwindling y rápido. Hell, they're even risking faith in and the effectiveness of entire governments. Brilliant strategy. Mind-bogglingly stupid, mind-bogglingly.

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 7:55pm

    Re: Re:

    The "labels" came into existence because of music.
    Because of music's fans, they will go out of existence.
    The language of music is universal and existed long before speech, and as long as mankind can tap their toes to the beat, it will always exist.

    I feel bad for you. It sounds like you can no longer tap your toes.

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 19th, 2012 @ 10:46pm

    Re: Re:

    you've got it backwards mate

     

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  34.  
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    CK20XX, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 1:14am

    Re: Re:

    I think I can understand your thinking somewhat. Your view of the future is very narrow though. When that tipping point is reached, what's actually going to happen is the legacy players will finally die off and be replaced by all the new players that have been popping up like weeds. When that tipping point is reached, the paradigm shift will be complete and the circle of life will begin anew.

    The new national / international distribution system is called the internet. It's what smashes down boundaries and unites every country on the planet. As long as that isn't tampered with, everything is going to be fine.

    The sad thing though is that the RIAA, MPAA, etc. could have been a part of this new world, but they chose to fight it and abuse their customers instead. When they finally die, no one will shed a single tear. No one misses them even now, and yet the industry thrives.

     

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    The eejit (profile), Sep 20th, 2012 @ 1:35am

    I think that what all these industries are actually competing against is time. If I have to spend 25 minutes obtaining software, just so I can purchase an item, be limited in what I can do with it, not actually own it in any meaningful way, and y'know, get treated like a criminal at every step, then chances are, I'm ignoring you.

    For example of this, I recently found otu that my AppleID was inactive and could only be reactivated with a fee. How did I find this out, you ask? By having all my legally purchased iTunes files missing from my media library.

    Contrast this with Steam (inb4 "STEAM R DRM N00B"). I recently purchased yet another Humble Bundle. From payment to playing? 30 minutes (including download time on Steam). No fuss, no hassle, no problem.

    See the time difference between the two? Five minutes. Know which one I'll be doing more of?

     

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  36.  
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    Zakida Paul (profile), Sep 20th, 2012 @ 1:45am

    Re: Re:

    What a load of utter bollocks. That's all I can really say about this drivel.

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 2:51am

    Re: To Paraphrase Sun Tzu

    (holding my breath) why ? ;D

     

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  38.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 3:06am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "Orderly distribution" - What you imply with that is complete and utter fucking nonsense. Wake the fuck up. Distribution is light-fucking-speed. You stand a better chance by trying to prove the universe is an illusion."

    Try to fill a tea cup with a fire hose. It doesn't work. You need an ordered system to turn the fire hose into something useful.

    Distribution is over-fucking-whelming for most people, and as a result, little in the way of common social language is built. Everyone has their personal favorite band, and nobody has one in common. Socially, it's a null.

    "Finally, that tipping point, that is nothing more than a self-inflicted gunshot wound to a shrinking set of testicles."

    Yeah, the record labels certain shot themselves in the foot actually trying to make a living and maintain a business in the face of widespread illegal active. Such idiots, trying to be legal and all.

    Do you actually believe this stuff? Are you actually over 12 years old?

     

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  39.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 3:11am

    Re: Re: Re:

    "When that tipping point is reached, what's actually going to happen is the legacy players will finally die off and be replaced by all the new players that have been popping up like weeds. When that tipping point is reached, the paradigm shift will be complete and the circle of life will begin anew."

    The problem is that with too many sources, with each band and each remix artist being a source, it gets overwhelming. There is no easy way to sort it.

    "The new national / international distribution system is called the internet."

    See my comment above, it's like trying to fill a tea cup with a fire hose. Distribution isn't just open the fire hose and spray. That doesn't work really well. That is "ready, fire, aim" and that never hits the target.

    The loss of a common social language, one replaced with flash fads and meme spewing kiddies isn't exactly a step up, is it?

    "When they finally die, no one will shed a single tear. No one misses them even now, and yet the industry thrives."

    Yet, the stuff that is pirated, shared, desires, talked about, that comes from the labels. Few people are pirating the other stuff. So you may want to think nobody will shed a tear, the reality is that they would flip out if their supply suddenly disappeared.

    You can't wish reality away.

     

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  40.  
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    techflaws (profile), Sep 20th, 2012 @ 3:27am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    See my comment above, it's like trying to fill a tea cup with a fire hose

    It's a failed analogy. So what?

     

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  41.  
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    Ninja (profile), Sep 20th, 2012 @ 4:21am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Sorry pal, it's already happened as he said. Music is widespread and contrary to your claims it's pretty vibrant. I've never had that much access to all sorts of music, including regional. Hell I was listening to enka these days! I sure as hell don't know which label they belonged to (the main ones indie labels or self producing).

    Try to fill a tea cup with a fire hose. It doesn't work. You need an ordered system to turn the fire hose into something useful.

    I fill my hard drives with shitloads of content and don't see a problem with it. You see, the issue is that you are not filling a cup, you are filling the pacific ocean with your hose ;)

    Distribution is over-fucking-whelming for most people, and as a result, little in the way of common social language is built. Everyone has their personal favorite band, and nobody has one in common. Socially, it's a null.

    I don't see a problem with nobody sharing a common favorite group. Actually it makes things more interesting as they will share their stuff among themselves and discover their friends favorite groups. Besides, you usually have more than one favorite artist. It's a full bustling social experience. Your world must be really boring pal. I pity you ;)

    Yeah, the record labels certain shot themselves in the foot actually trying to make a living and maintain a failed business modelin the face of widespread sharing activity.

    FTFY

    Do you actually believe this stuff? Are you actually over 12 years old?

    Are you talking to yourself?

     

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  42.  
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    Ninja (profile), Sep 20th, 2012 @ 4:24am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Yet, the stuff that is pirated, shared, desires, talked about, that comes from the labels. Few people are pirating the other stuff. So you may want to think nobody will shed a tear, the reality is that they would flip out if their supply suddenly disappeared.

    Music is created despite the labels. Supply will NEVER disappear ;)

     

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  43.  
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    Marcel de Jong (profile), Sep 20th, 2012 @ 5:29am

    Re: You wouldn't download a car...

    You wouldn't kill a policeman, steal his helmet, take a dump in that helmet, send it to the policeman's widow, and then steal it again.


    ** "stolen" from the IT Crowd.

     

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  44.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 6:33am

    Re: Soon no one will buy music

    Yeah - we used to call this radio.

    Funny that.

     

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  45.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 6:37am

    Re: Re:

    And so before the record labels existed there was no language?

    Sorry, not buying it...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  46.  
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    Gothenem (profile), Sep 20th, 2012 @ 6:49am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "The problem is that with too many sources, with each band and each remix artist being a source, it gets overwhelming. There is no easy way to sort it."

    Umm, the internet has things like databases and thumbs up and down. It will be very easy to sort it.

    Music labels have always paraded themselves off as 'content filters', filtering out the bad from the good, so you don't waste your money on bad content. A laudable goal, and one that was neccessary in the past.

    The advent of the internet has changed that though. Now the fans are the filter. They can give reviews and the like. And while everyones music tastes are different (as you pointed out), people will gravitate towards others with similar tastes and use their reviews and their opinions to filter and search for other bands they may like.

    "See my comment above, it's like trying to fill a tea cup with a fire hose. Distribution isn't just open the fire hose and spray. That doesn't work really well. That is "ready, fire, aim" and that never hits the target."

    A poor analogy from someone who doesn't quite get it. A while back, I was on DeviantArt and was checking out the artwork for an artist I like. He mentioned he was listening to a band I have never heard of before (in this case VNV Nation). He highly recommended the band. Now, I do not know the DeviantArt artists musical taste, but I thought I like his artwork. I think I will give this band a try.

    I loaded up YouTube and found VNV Nations official You Tube page. I even found the exact song that that person was listening to. I LOVED it!!! The music was awesome. So much so, that I have, at the time of this writing, purchased every album this band has produced, in digital format.

    Using the MAFIAA's method, I would probably still not have heard of this band, who is now one of my favourites. Your firehose analogy is simply no longer applicable on the internet. Especially with social media. You see all your friends like Band A, you will probably check out Band A. If you don't like Band A, then when you notice all your friends like Band B, you probably won't bother checking it out. This is how the internet can be used to filter. If Person A likes these five bands. You check them out and like them, when Person A finds another artist they like, you will most likely go and check them out.

    Now, I am not saying that content from the MAFIAA is bad (some of it is, but each person's tastes are different), but their methods are. They need to recognize that the way people consume content has changed. By refusing to accept that, and fighting that change, they have set themselves up to fail. Whether or not the law is on their side is irrelivant. The prohibition shows this well - if people want content, they will find a way to get it, legally or not. Litigation will not change reality.

    The end point is, if the MAFIAA does not change to meet consumers expectations, they will be left behind. Others, who will meet those expectations, will come in to fill the void. They will create a system that will act as the filter you think we will loose. They will create a system that allows you to find the music you want. They will be the ones that drive piracy down, and they will do it through innovation, not litigation.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  47.  
    identicon
    CK20XX, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 7:15am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    To be fair, I think I understand your concern. I am reminded of the great video game crash of 1983; one of the major contributors to it was a glut of software that gave consumers too many choices. No one could tell what games were good and bad, so people stopped buying them, and the market died until a nobody named Nintendo revived it single-handedly.

    But things have changed drastically since that disaster. The internet takes care of everything single-handedly in a much more generous way than The Big N was forced to go with. Don't know what's awesome and what's crap? Do a web search and you'll find out instantly. It's actually OK now for an uncountable number of people to be selling music without gatekeepers because the people finally have miraculous tools with which to refine their decisions. They don't have to wait every month for Nintendo Power or something; they just have to dance their fingers across their keyboards. And with many songs being less than a buck each, the lifestyle of a hoarder isn't so financially intimidating either.

    I'm not certain that gatekeepers are obsolete either. There's still great comfort in the idea of being able to let a publisher handle promotion and hype so one can focus more on producing music/writing/whatever. The problem is today's gatekeepers can't even be bothered to do what they're supposed to do in the first place. That's why so many people today are calling for their deaths; they're selfish and deceitful businesses with decades of customer and artist abuse as their legacy. Hopefully any new ones that appear will know better and not self-destruct like that.

    Oh, and you're completely wrong about the labels being the source of worthwhile media. That's the artists, who more often than not don't get any help from their labels these days. Open up your mind to the transforming world around you, and furthermore open your heart to the love and support that comes with file sharing. If your stuff is spread throughout the internet, it means people love it and can be encouraged to buy it.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  48.  
    identicon
    Steve, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 8:27am

    I don't download,...

    I make music and i tell you now, if 8 million people were downloading my tunes, legally or otherwise.

    I'D BE OVER THE FUCKING MOON!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  49.  
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    DannyB (profile), Sep 20th, 2012 @ 8:53am

    Re:

    I still buy CD's. Just not on CD.

    I can browse Amazon in the comfort of my home using the convenience of my computer. Then I can buy an entire album inexpensively.

    I could easily burn it to a blank CD, but who uses CD's anymore?

    Filesharing is not so much about getting something free as it is about convenience. If the RIAA had set up digital downloads in 2000, they would have the entire market to themselves by now and would be raking in big bucks.

    A physical object (CD, DVD, 8-track, vinyl disk, cassette tape, wax cylinders) is something I have to remember where I left it. With digital music, it can be everywhere I am. No fuss. It's on my phone, in my car, on my personal media player, on my tablet, laptop, computer, Google TV, TiVo, PS3, etc.

    It's a shame the RIAA left the job to others to pioneer the amazing 21st century convenience of digital music.

    Just as the MPAA, HBO, et all, are leaving the job to The Pirate Bay or the torrents to pioneer the amazing 21st century convenience of digital movies.

    All of these groups are doing their very best to inconvenience the public, buy unprecedented government power to arbitrarily suppress speech and generally earn the maximum amount of public ridicule and scorn. Don't forget the publishers and their price fixing! They wouldn't want books to move into the 21st century.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  50.  
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    DannyB (profile), Sep 20th, 2012 @ 8:56am

    Re: I don't download,...

    You don't want 8 million people downloading your music legally?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  51.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 11:18am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    If the stuff that is being pirated is label stuff, could you tell bob and the other "independent" whiners to shut up? Based on your statement that no one is downloading indie stuff, any nobody who comes here with no credentials and claims to be devastated by piracy is bullshitting, because few to no people are downloading their stuff.

    Hilarious how you can switch who's being devastated when it benefits your argument. That industry is taking a bloody long time to die for one that has been described as "crippled".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  52.  
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    ck209, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 12:02pm

    :P

    Interesting read through the comments section here. I recently swithced from dropbox to 4sync (cloud) and found out 4sync is connected to 4shared, which has a really good music app called 4shared music, i highly recommend you guys check it out as they offer 15gb of free space.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  53.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 1:08pm

    techdirt's only point is to troll mpaa/riaa employees

    honestly do i care if filesharing is mainstream

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  54.  
    identicon
    BigKeithO, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 1:59pm

    Re: Re: I don't download,...

    Pretty sure "over the moon" means he would be happy.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  55.  
    identicon
    Tony, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 3:22pm

    I've said this for years, but this is the music industry's fault. The pirates came out with a better way to distribute music while the industry was busy trying to protect a dying business model. It should be one of the RIAA member companies who has the largest music downloading site, not a pirate site.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  56.  
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    BentFranklin (profile), Sep 28th, 2012 @ 11:33pm

    Re: Re:

    I know he wasn't writing while talking.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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