Friday, May 02, 2003

Rebooting Music...contd

Rebooting Music

Users always win !, If not legally, then illegally

It is futile to fight technology with lawsuits. If you try to prevent users from having a better experience, they'd break laws to get it.

Why ask users to buy entire CD's when each track can be easily delivered?

Why treat users as criminals and restrict users to use the album they buy for the fear they'd share it?

WHy can't record companies learn a lesson from the fact that normal law abiding citizens gleefully become law breakers, just because a better experience is denied to them ?

Madonna resorted to flooding file-sharing services with bogus files to confuse pirates and increase sales of her album "American Life". Hackers promptly posted a free copy of the album on her website

Napster used central directory computers to keep track of the music each user was making available online so that other users could find what they wanted fast. The courts shut it down accusing it of " being an accessory to murder" ( Well.. an accessory to copyright infringement actually !)

Technology morphed to find a loophole. Now, requests for a particular file are passed from one user’s computer to another.
Grokster and Morpheus, two popular file-swapping programs who enabled it, were sued but courts found them not guilty of contributory infringement, just as makers of video recorders are not responsible for the use of such machines for piracy.

Record industries fought back by trying to scare individuals that they'd be sued and by offering subscription based services ( Rhapsody, pressplay and MusicNet)

Subscription based services never picked up because :

Music is'nt sold. It is rented for a duration.
Moving downloaded music to Mp3 players either prohibited or cost extra.

Apple's iTunes Music Store, uses a simpler model: each track from its 200,000-track library costs $0.99. Once purchased and downloaded, a track can be copied to three computers, burned on to CDs, and transferred to Apple’s iPod portable music-players.

The new service is available only in America, to users of Apple’s Macintosh machines, ( under 5% of personal computers). PC version would be launched later this year.


Post a Comment

<< Home