Sunday, April 17, 2005

merchants of cool (part ii)

PBS (article)

PBS showed the show to some teens to see what they thought about it. One exchange really stood out:

Adia: I completely agree. The Internet is too big to control. . . .

Willis: I think what the Internet has done is to diversify the opportunities we have to find something we like. If you look at who complained about Napster and those kinds of programs, it was the big labels. . . . Whereas you see a lot of smaller [artists and labels] supporting programs like Napster, because they can really get their stuff out [to the public]. It allows me to download a band from ex-patriot Americans in Hong Kong or something. I can do whatever I want to, as long as the people are willing to put it out there. And it's the small artists who are doing that.

Tor: With things like Napster, you can't tell people, "This is what you should be listening to." You can't push it. . . .

And there you have it. Why is RIAA fighting P2P so much? Not because of copyright laws. It is because P2P takes all the power that they (RIAA's owners: Viacom, Time-Warner, etc...) have to tell us what to listen to. And if they can't tell us what to listen to, they can't become rich. It's not the artists that will become broke if P2P rules the music scene, it is the RIAA that will become broke. And you know what, they can’t stop fighting P2P. Even if record sales pick up (which they have), they can not stop, because unless they can find a way to tell us who to listen to, they will run out of money. Well holy crap, how's that for a revelation. (At least it’s a revelation for me.)

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