The Big Lie About Music Sharing - The Future of Music

We all know the big lie about the impact of free music sharing - that it will kill the music - that no one will make music because they will not be able to earn money doing it.

This big lie is based on two false assumptions - that no one will make music for free and that the only way to make money from music is to sell recordings of it. We all know both of these assumptions are false. People have been creating music since long before anyone was paid for it and people were making money from music long before there was any way to record it.

But the reality is free music on the Internet will not mean people will stop paying for recorded music.

I remember just shortly after CDs replaced records there was speculation on what type of media will replace CDs. Nobody at that time saw that the answer was "nothing". People do not want recorded music that is tied to media anymore. They want music that is portable and that they can use in whatever device they might want to, whether it be a CD player, an MP3 player, their cell phone or simply on their computer. They want to be able to play and use their music any way they might think of, including putting it in custom song lists or slide shows and videos they might create and sharing it with friends.

Music media is obsolete and that scares the hell out of the recording industry. They know that they are a top heavy inefficient way of recording and distributing music and the Internet scares the hell out of them. They know digital music is going to destroy the recoding industry as they know it but they do not know what else to do but circle the wagons and try to fight the inevitable. The fact is they are not needed anymore.

Actual recording costs have gone down with new technologies, and small recoding studios, or artist's home studios, can replace the big industry studios. They also know that the Internet and music fans networking can do a much better job of promotion than the recording industry can. They know that they are obsolete. The only thing they have left is "ownership" of the music and they see that dwindling away as new artists produce and promote their music independently.

With the elimination of the recording industry recorded music will be cheaper due to the elimination of the cost of media and the high cost of recording industry promotion

Ironically one of the things the digital revolution is going accomplish is a revival of live music as the emphasis moves from industry created superstars to more independent fan supported artists, The new artists know that the fans are not just customers but part of the music community. Artists are going to realize they have to make a real connection with fans if they expect them to pay for their music, and that is done through live performances. We already see a trend among young people to freely download music from the overpaid superstars, while at the same time buying music from the new struggling independent artists.

Artists can now deal directly with their fans selling their work at much lower prices and even giving some of it away as gifts to the fans that support them. The music will be out of control of the recording industry, who only see it as a commodity to profit from, and into the hands of the creators and fans who love it.

Artists realize the new reality, that going to war with their fans to get them to buy music is counterproductive and that, fans do, and will in the future, choose to buy music even as they share it with friends.

Governments and regulators need to see that their role should not be to support the obsolete recording industry but to support music creators and fans, who interestingly seem to be on the same side of the legislative/regulatory battles that are taking place now.

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