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Music Downloading Is Not The End Of The World

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I have for years been a firm supporter of the music industry. Well, I suppose that is only in the sense that I continued to buy CDs from my favorite artists. I have been on the music downloading bandwagon since day one, blowing through such great programs as Napster, Kazaa, Limewire, and more. I stopped impulse buying of CDs before I heard them. That probably cost the music industry an easy $50 a month. I have listened to the industry talk about how all this downloading and file sharing is ruining them. But I am here today to tell them the truth.

Downloading doesn’t hurt you. Offering a sub-par product does.

I am a music whore. I can’t get enough music in my life. My CD collection is massive. My MP3 collection is massive. My iPod is maxed out. Nothing is more frustrating then running out and getting the newest CD from your favorite band just to get it home and discover that at best there are two good songs on it. Case in point, the new System of a Down CD, Hypnotize. I am a big fan of SOAD. But this latest CD is a letdown. I think that it might have been a better decision to take the twelve best songs off of their two-CD output this year and just put out one. But no, the money that would be lost on such an endeavor is scary. Like any corporation, the music industry only cares about money. They do not care about what you like. They do not care if they ruin their artists. And most importantly, the industry does not care about you. They care about making you like what they want you to like. It’s more about getting you to spend your hard earned money on the newest fart in a can CD from Beyonce than it is on developing quality artists. How many bands with sound-alike names can be shoved down your throat? Nickleback? Nicklecreek? Nickledimepenny? I can’t tell one from the other and honestly, I don’t want to.

So here is what I say to the industry. You want my money, then you need to do one of two things. Make the product worth the $12-$15 you want me to pay for it. Or reduce the price to under $8 and offer a money back guarantee on garbage. There is more quality and talent on independent music labels then anywhere else. But those labels lack the true money and backing to really market their artists correctly. So unless you pay close attention and read underground magazines you are going to miss out. I don’t bother to pay attention to reviews of CDs in major music magazines like Rolling Stone simply because their reviewers don’t give honest reviews. How can you give five stars to a CD that sounds identical to that of another band? It’s a money driven business that we consumers are stuck in the middle of. I always thought that payola was illegal but anyone with some sense can see how backwards the whole industry is. The only way the consumer can feel safe is to hear the music before buying it.

For me and most of the people in this country, downloading is the only way to protect ourselves. I am not looking to destroy artists or ruin anyone. I am just trying to spend my money on something worth while. I still buy CDs when I think they are worth it. Places like iTunes and other pay-to-download sites are fine, but their selection is minimal. You can’t take someone so immersed in the subculture and try to sell them some watered down version of the real thing. Until then I think I’ll be okay. Just don’t shut anymore of my sites down!

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  • Ty Pennington

    “Or reduce the price to under $8 and offer a money back guarantee on garbage.”

    When CD’s the hit the scene, we were promised that one day CD’s would be dirt cheap.

    This never happened, and the industry blamed us (society) because of people who used a CD player in connection with a cassette to copy songs and give it to their friends.

    Somehow we are to blame that CD’s don’t cost $5. WHATEVER!!!

  • Sean

    The music industry is made up of lying thieving bastards. Artists get screwed cosntantly, and personally I find it insulting that I am accused of ruinging the music biz because of an occasional download.

  • Roshan

    In fact we we are downloadin, all we are doing is previewing the songs to see if their any good or not. We do in fact buy CDs for the artists that we feel are good from the downloads that we got. Well if this is a problem then you should start complaining against mtv and other radio stations for lettin us ‘preview’ your music.

  • OmegaRED

    What a pathetic excuse for theft. Albums with one good song have been coming out for 50 years and the artist is to blame for a sub par product. What nerve you have to decide none of that applies to yourself and then blame the record companies for your theft.

  • karmahacker

    Here you go – if you want a real talent – go to – it’s a record label of a new type, all music is decent, this label releases the music, which never could be released by any mainstream record labels. For instance music like mine – a club electro-trance music. So now – I have two albums released and an EP, and money for me as an artist fully depend on your downloads! I adore them – the nouveau pros guys, despite the fact, that its Russians who opened the label. Who knows, maybe they will save the music like in 19th century!

  • Six7Six7

    i agree 100%.

    the music industry has created their own problems. they give us 10 bands that sound exactly like Creed, and they expect us to spend 120 bucks buying all their crap?

    sorry. no.

    Indie bands are the way to go, because they are not some overpolished turd that has some similarity to the band that had the hit song last week.

    i download to find new bands, not to screw the artists. If they are good, then i will pay to go see them in concert. i put money in the bands hands, because THEY are the ones being screwed by their record labels. The labels are just pissed that we found a way around their scam. Well fuck you guys. I’ll be at my local concert club, spending 5 dollars on a ticket and picking up the band’s CD for 7 dollars. And you can shover your 17 dollar nickelback CD and their 65 dollar concert tickets up your collective asses.

  • Lateralus98

    omegared, you really think that a crappy album is solely the artists’ fault? think again. the only reason crappy albums are out is because filthy rich record labels control the industry. They CHOOSE which artists to put out or not. They CHOOSE the music YOU listen to. True, stealing is bad, but these record labels are also stealing (not in the true sense of the word). I haven’t downloaded music for over two years now. I buy my CDS now. The last 5 cds that I bought were real let downs. Anyway, where can I find those underground magazines??

  • Johannus

    You know theres plenty of sites that offer you to legallly download individual tracks for a couple of cents per track, so quit your bitching about crappy albums and go get them there.

  • gama

    I personally download everything i listen to so i know wheter or not it’s good i don’t want to support music industries i want to support bands so if i like the album i go to a show i buy a shirt, i buy a dvd whatever but i will never pay for cd’s again

  • Casey

    This article hits it dead on. Very well written. That’s exactly why I stopped wasting money on CDs. I waste $14 on a CD that has 1 or 2 good songs. If the prices go down, I’d be more than willing to support the artists that I listen to.

  • nixon

    i think u just write things up to make money , seems like u jsut making things up or wahtever… too boring now… i come here sometimes.. cause of torrentspy… and now i realize, the topic is getting more stupid !!!

  • http://none jasper

    i say fuck the major labels. they’ve ruined music.

    mtv, radio stations…they play what the record labels want them to. remember the fcc commission on payola? labels are paying money to have certain artists played on what should be public domain airwaves.

    in others words, music gets big because someone can make money from it, not because it’s a great band or artist. new and completely original artists aren’t getting heard because this corporate shit is taking priority. personally, i say right on to the fellow who wrote this article. there is one local record store in my town and the average price for a cd is between $16-21. and i’m in backwards southeastern ohio! cost of living here is quite low. considering it costs less than a dollar to manufacture and record each disc, we’re paying for a lot more than just the music.

    and that’s not helping us. especially when mainstream music is so exceptionally stale. there are a handful of companies in charge of most major labels. and they’ve got their hands in the tv and radio business, so we get marketed to with their music. i don’t watch mtv anymore. no vh1, either. that’s not music, it’s garbage.

    the open circuit information provided by internet makes it possible for bands to be heard and gain popularity by the quality of their sound, not by the big money behind them. the record labels will never take control of people sharing music. they should embrace it. allow free downloads of music and make cds more enticing. $8 is reasonable. i’d pay $8 for a cd, even on impulse. hell, keep up the dual disc, or include other features that make buying a cd worth our fucking money.

    if only the music scene were 1974 again.

  • Magus

    I am a Downloading adict, and also i am an obsesive buyer, thanks to kazaa i got to learn about groups like sonata artica, nightwish, therion, and many more. I live in mexico, and the cultural diferences in the radio industry would have never allowed me to know about that musik. tnx to kazaa i did, and now i own many original discs of those artist, but oinly because i had tested them before, so i agree, if you like a song, support the artist, not the thieving industry

  • Nico

    There’s a simpler way. Stop buying music from the coprorations. The big labels are always the ones who release the rubbish they expect the masses to buy, but since when has “pop” music has any artistic validity. Support the underground – true artists, where there’s no money to be made, either from the bands or the indy labels. It’s not as easy as dropping into your local hot topic and picking up something from the latest “top 10″ shelf. It means you actually have to seek out the music you want, and buy it from the label themselves, or an underground distro. And in a good deal of cases, you’ll end up paying less for it anyway.

  • f0x12

    ya i live in canada abd i dl my music by the cd and for free. i do it because im cheap. sometimes i will go buy a cd just beacause i want to support the artist but usually its because i cant find it for free on the net. if prices changed i would not buy any more cds, free is always better

  • OmegaRED

    Whine whine whine

    Stop making excuses for THEFT!

    Shitty music has been around since the beginning of music itself and record labels have been pushing crap since the 50’s you don’t have to buy it if you don’t want to. If you choose to download (steal) it then thats your own perogative. I download tons of music good or bad and make no mistake about it this is theft. I don’t delude myself into thinking I’m doing a good thing.

    The only valid point any of this article makes is the PRICE of cd’s is too high and this is something I agree on. Record companies shoot themselves in the foot with their high priced junk. However, being ripped off for a Korn cd doesn’t make stealing it ok. Its theft so accept responsibility for it at least.

    The only thing that sickens me more than the greedy record companies are the cowards that steal the music without admitting it is theft.

  • OmegaRED

    You are not entitled to good music. Get over yourselves. Where is the ethics in stealing music you claim is so shitty it isnt worth buying?! That indie band you support and oh so love is being pirated by someone just like you who thinks that band sucks.

    It will never end as long as pirated music is as accessible as legit music no matter how low a cd costs free is cheaper.

  • Brett

    Finally, nice to see someone who agrees with me! I was so steamed that Usher (Someone who lipsynchs all his concerts, and releases garbage music), won artist of the year, and yet, DJ Tiesto (A guy who spins live at all his concerts, a man who was selected to play at the opening ceremonies of the 2004 Athens olympics, the first DJ ever to play live at a olympic opening ceremony I add) gets completely no mention of his great work here in north america!

    If I was good looking, rich, and willing to use music to promote products, I would be rich. Makes me glad im Ugly, kinda chubby, unpopular, antisocial, so I can actually perfect the art of making good music that people want to hear.

    I download music and burn it because I want to hear good music. I wont subscribe to napster because i dont want to hear garbage like beyonce, brittney spears, and kanye west.

    Thank god for naoster back in 99, or I would still be listening to the radio, and buying CDs with one good track on them!

    Lets keep the good fight going! Download what you want to hear. Do it for FREE!

  • Brett

    “You are not entitled to good music. Get over yourselves. Where is the ethics in stealing music you claim is so shitty it isnt worth buying?! That indie band you support and oh so love is being pirated by someone just like you who thinks that band sucks.

    It will never end as long as pirated music is as accessible as legit music no matter how low a cd costs free is cheaper.”

    I cant buy it because Future shop, CD plus, and wal-mart dont stock scooter, DJ tiesto, DJ quicksilver, Bonkers, etc.. (I can go on). I can only order it online off of Amazon, and that still takes 2-4 weeks till i get it, wheras I can download tha album Via BitTorrent in under an hour. Now tell me, what is the more viable option.

    Maybe if our americanized society actually cared about the music, and not looks + sex appleal of the popular shitty artits like spears, west, lohan, who recieve all the attention from the labels, E-shows, and Advertisements, and maybe if the lables actually started caring about musical talent instead of advertising power, movie contracts and all that other shit, and maybe opening up thier airwaves to other forms of music, maybe me, and other people on this continent would start to buy music again. But the RIAA wants to sue my ass for downloading a foreign album that I could never buy here anyway.

    So why do you defend them? They sell out and censor artists.

    Give me a good reason why I shouldnt download.

  • RockANDorRoller

    OmegaRED you sound like you work in some way for the
    scumbags causing all this crap music.
    Anyway, as a rockn roll fan, I hate shittleback, creed, hoobestink, linkin park etc, all that absolute
    shite gets in the way of good indie rocknroll. It’s on the so called ‘alternative’ stations because the record companies and the clearchannel want it there.No other reason. Corperate shite thrown out there for mindless dweebs to feed on. And Omega, your comment that music was always this way is total nonsense. It has become this way over the last 15 years or so as the corperations have consolidated the whole f**king business.I myself DL
    and if its good, I’ll go and see them Live. And that way the BAND gets my money, not some fat cunt in a suit.
    p.s. Lars Ulrich is a cunt.

  • the thief

    OmegaRED fuck you. stealing music. downloading is not stealing. me kicking in your door, string you up, taking all your cds and your stereo. Now thats good old stealing. so some kids rips a album and shares a crap version with others. i didn’t ever hear anyone bitch back in the days when swapping tapes was the thing. if anybody ever to my face told me i was shit for p2p too my face i would slug him and take his wallet. if you buy a cd its yours ashole. caused you paid for it. if you want to put in on p2p then do it cause you can. your cd your computer. if the industary is loosing. fuckem. who cares anyway. rich stay rich by stealing from poor. poor stay poor cause they steal from poor. hummmmm. if you dont like p2p then go the fuck outside sometimes and get your nerd ass off your fucking computer. on the street you will find what a real thief is. motherfuckers

  • the thief

    seemes like people care more about corp. making money than helping people that are in need. hell dont you even know why you are paying twice for gas now or do you even care. you just keep on buying. does anyone rembember boston tea party. why was that done? i think we should stop buying gas and cd for just 3 weeks and then we would set all this bullshit in its place.

    ps. i would love to see the ceo of say bmg dig a ditch

  • RyMantys

    Letme tell you about the third world.
    I live in an african country where:
    1- Foreign music is not legally distributed
    2- We receive foreign TV, with all the ads that entails

    So, a need is created, but with no legal way to satisfy it. The only answer is piracy right?

    Oh, and we all have internet (though most of the people can only have access to it through cyber-café, and they are NEVER empty). So you could say that we COULD buy on internet. But hey, guess what? We don’t use credit cards here. So no, we can’t.

    Furthermore, you have to consider the culture we live in. For example, I’m a big fan of comics. But there is no comic industry here, people are simply not interested in them, and that goes for a certain type of music as well. You could look forever for a tool album, even in black market, you’ll never ever find it. Then, there are religious issues: I’d say at least 60% of the art production wouldn’t get through the censure here even if the distributors were willing to sell in my country. And last but not least, if music (or comics, or movies, or books, or whatever) was sold here at the prices they are sold in Western countries, only 5% of the population would be able to buy it.

    But we still get foreign TV channels and internet, showing us the latest albums, the latest concerts, the latest movie in the cinemas this week. What is expected from us?

    So I yes I download, and I am not the least ashamed of it. Nobody is losing money because if I wasn’t downloading it, I wouldn’t be buying it anyway. In fact, some of the stuff I find on internet and I really like, I buy later when I get the chance (at great expense for me, since it involves getting a visa, buying an airline ticket, and spending shitloads of money in a country where prices have absolutely nothing to do with what I earn).

    And I thank all those internet saints that offer us free stuff to download, especially comics, that they have to scan, redraw and even translate sometimes.

  • RyMantys

    Oh, one last thing. I told you I buy originals every chance I get. It is very important for me to do so, because I really want those artists to be able to live from their work, and to continue providing us with it, and also to show my appreciation of it. I wish I could buy more, really.

  • poison

    Can someone please tell me why we should pay for cds when we have already paid for the same album on record or cassette? I dont mind paying for music if i like the artist but paying 2 or 3 times is not good. also i agree with the money back idea. we here all the time that this artist is great or that artist is great, go out and buy the album just to find there is only 1 or a few songs any good.

    on the other hand if someone downloads music, he or she should own an original of that song, be it either on record, cassette or cd. or go out and buy it if he/she likes the song and if dislikes it then delete it. Here Singles cost far too much. i think 2 singles and you can have the whole cd.

  • nuklz

    i have had my car broken into four times.

    each time i lost an average of 20 CD’s. my auto insurance company told me i was shit out of luck for those because since they weren’t attached to my vehicle, they are not covered under my policy.

    sooo….i have lost about $1500 worth of music, with no way of recovering that loss. my only option, to download every single track that i paid for. i also have about 100 albums on good old cassette format, so i have the right to download those songs as well.

    but what about tracks that aren’t released on CD? should i go out and spend $25 – $20 on a 12″? perhaps i should, problem…..those tracks are in limited production, sometimes (most times) some records don’t make it to every record shop, what should i do? what about classic tracks that have been out of circulation for 10+ years? what do i do? i searched Napsters database for specific songs but they aren’t available.

    what about record companies and music stores that were charged a few years back with price fixing? (remember how CD’s dropped from $25 to $15 at HMV, what? you think they had a change of heart?) should i mail in my reciepts for all that music that i bought so they can send me a rebate?

    not to worry people, the digital age is upon us, soon their will be no hard copies of music available for purchase, everything will be electronic (thanks apple)

    the best thing to happen to music is this digital age, everyone on this thread speaks about buying a CD for $12 and getting 2 or three good songs. now you can buy just those three songs for $3 instead of spending $12.

    personally i will never purchase another piece of music again, i have spent my fair share supporting these companies. if they come after me for downloading music that i have on my HD, i will tell them to take it up with my insurance company.

    for those of you who download mixtapes, not to worry, those mixtapes have labels on them that say “for promo use only, not for sale” so technically we aren’t breaking the law (thanks DJ Clue)

    Oh yeah, how pathetic is it that the greeks had a DJ spinning music at the opening ceremonies of the olympics? what? was zorba at home with the flu?

  • dj black knight

    Yup, it’s stealing. Yup, the record companies are screwing artists and consumers alike. Yup, there is a way better solution, but until the tables turn we will not change. We DL every thing and although I’m not saying it’s right… it is a way of life. To tell you the truth we are all criminals anyway, we have enough laws in place to make us all criminals… Have you ever gone faster than the posted speed limit? Have you ever drank and got behind the wheel of a vehicle, lets not even get started on pot. You ever threw an egg at someone’s house… shoplifted? Used someone else’s wi-fi without permission? Drove without insurance? Shit, driven without a seatbelt? or a license? Drank under age? well you get my point, we’re all criminals… and all two steps away from jail. SO NO ONE HAS THE RIGHT TO JUDGE ME for being a criminal too. I download, I steal that’s it. RIAA screw ’em… it’s just the fact that they are losing on an investment gone wrong… Spending Millions promoting horrible artist and pushing them on the consumer and the counter-culture choosing something that they like before something that they’re forced to listen to. Remember the good ol’ days when you could actually hear a good song on the “popular” radio stations? Those days are over my friends… I say give the recording industry what they deserve a swift kick in the rear end for trying to be our voice. We know what’s good to us… lets keep it that way.

  • ash

    ok people are going on about these underground bands andd websites!! Lets have some posted id love to check em out. Ive got 100s of MP3 albums and about 70 CDs, ill buy the CDs i like but never new, you can get them off ebay for £5 for a decent album, and i only get albums that i realy want!!! Personaly i like owning a CD collection, i still like buying CDs a lot, i like the feeling of getting home and loading it up, its better than downloading. The trouble is theres no right or wrong answer to the debate just personal preferance!

  • benny music freek

    im from the uk and theres a band called the artic monkeys they have become sum thin like the 5th biggest sellin album on the day of release but the reason for this success is becoz they put there music on kazza and lime wire b4 2 judge public reaction i had there album 3 weeks b4 it came out and now they ave earnt shit loads coz ppl buy quality bands albums

  • steve

    let me just say one thing….u guys do have credit cards its called the UK. We have given u money on credit for donkeys years and with promise to pay it back but u never do …u even asked us to wipe it clean and send u more….now thats stealing

  • ash

    yea i had arctic monkeys songs the day they came availible on torrent spy, and then went and brought the album on day of release

  • SyChO

    I wonder why people buy music off paying sites like iTunes, I mean 3 songs for $3 is the same as 15 songs for $15 (the CD). I agree you get to chose the song you want, but if you think about it, the music labels save on production cost and distribution yet we still end up paying the same amount per song.

    Songs should no be more than $0.15 to $0.25 and cds should be roughly $5.

    I don’t know about you guys, but paying $5 for a complete original CD is something I would do.


  • Phillip Winn

    SyCHO, because $3 is not the same as $15.

  • me

    im kinda limited to listening to you complain, especially when you do not realize that hypnotize is SOAD’s best. I’m a music fanatic…well, more like a rock fanatic, and I have years worth of music (as in, I hit play, it will be years before the playlist is over without playing a song twice), but I can’t say much for your credibility when you says hypnotize was a dissappointment. I read about one more paragraph and i was done.

  • sincontrol

    I personally download music. I hate wasting my money is trash CDs that have only 1 or 2 good songs. If some people think Im a thief… i don’t really care. I will buy cds when they are wort my $15…
    And for those that post in blogs and get pay by companies to change our thinking F..U

  • Buckwell

    I alwayds buy albums and games i like, i just download em before i buy to see if it good. SOAD for example when none heard of em there cd was 13 dollars cnd so that is about 8 buck US, i loved it, there second album too, then there third album with no booklet or anything that looked like a blank cd cost me 30 dollars and it was ok compaired to the others, 2 other cd Smashing ppumpkins Siamese dreams and the prodigy fat of the land i have bought many times, cuase my rother or firend have lost or runien it and i find them to be some of the best albums made, and i not a fan of smashing pumpkins

  • RyMantys

    Steve, you’re off topic. But what the hell. I’ll answer anyway. Nobody gave me credit for any donkey. And I don’t think my government has either.
    If you wanna talk about large scale stealing, read some books about international commerce, then get back to me when you have an education.

  • bob

    I agree with your article.
    The decrease in music sales is directly affected by the increase in cd prices and decrease in quality.

    The music industry needs to learn some economics. The problem they are having is the law of diminishing returns. This states that the more they produce, the less they keep gaining. They needs to slow down production and increase quality. It is the artists’ fault too, they are stupid for letting 10 shitty ass songs to go on their cd. I think that if they are going to put the song on the cd they should believe it can really be a hit and not just fill up a cd, or atleast be willing to make a music vid out of it.
    oh well
    download my friends. fuck the riaa.

  • Justin

    Piracy is bad because the rich suffer,(UM LIKE I CARE) i havent bought a software program, games for consoles music cd’s dvd’s, in my life i d/l it all and thats how it should be, consumers first and if you disagree your a loser. Enjoy paying 20+ for cd’s
    100+ for software and 40+ for dvd’s which cost less them 5 bucks to produce now you tell me a reason why we shouldnt.

  • paul_90009

    FACT: The CD hit the world in 1984 (I think) = 22 years ago – thank you Philips of the Netherlands. Those of you who are old enough will remember the state of awe we all fell in to when we listened to a CD recording for the first time.

    FACT: In the mid 1980’s a music CD offer consisted of the following:
    1 x compact disc, pressed, containing approx 35 to 40 minutes of music, on average
    1 x CD jewel case, black case, transparent cover, easily breakable, easily scratchable
    1 x CD front and back cover
    Occasionally, an inlay
    Occasionally, a small poorly printed skinny booklet with some small photos and lyrics.

    FACT: In 2006, a music CD offer consists of ……….
    duh …. wait a minute ……. EXACTLY THE SAME THING.

    FACT: For 22 years the music majors have been laboring under the mistaken impression that we buy sound and sound alone and that the wrapping is of little consequence.

    FACT: The music majors have been whining for over 5 years now and have still not caught on to the fact that if you want the average consumer to consume your product, you have to render it continuously more attractive. They’ve stuck a tentative toe in the water with the enhanced CD (great … you get one 125MB music video mpeg, if you’re lucky). On very rare occasions, you might actually get a DVD thrown in. What can be said is that this phenomenon is hardly an underlying trend.

    FACT: We’re still stuck with the ubiquitous jewel case – an item which by now must surely be subject to 100th of a cent pricing negotiations. This is about the equivalent of putting a papier-mâché body on a Ferrari. Who the f**k do they think we are?

    FACT: People will always pay for a fair deal. And a fair deal means a serious value proposition, making a promise and keeping it.

    FACT: The music industry has had it too easy for over 20 years. They’ve been living a lie. A music industry exec who started at the age of 25 and is now 50 and in a top exec position – those are the f**kers who are whining now and screwing their own industry through total short sightedness. Oh yeah, I can feel those guys suffering. Man, are they in pain – they’ve got no-one in their business who knows how to pull back from an attack like this. They should try getting someone from the auto industry or from DIY/retail – there they will find 50 year old execs who’ve had to fight for their lives every minute of the day for the past 25 years.

    PRESUMPTION: If P2P was “miraculously” disabled overnight, download enthusiasts would reorganize around alternative technologies. Remember digital audio tape (DAT)? Those in the music industry who believe that each downloaded track would be instantly translated into 99c straight into their coffers, need their heads seriously examined.

    CONCLUSION: The music industry got fat and lazy. So now they get hit. All they have to do is give us a good reason to come back to them. Alienating us with their constant whining and rearguard anti-P2P stances is not an intelligent option.


  • Zongo

    Where does subjectivity come in? Sure you don’t like the System of a Down album but others do. The Observer named it one of the albums of the year.

  • ubrayj02

    I know I’m going to be comment number one million, but I have to get this out:

    Listening to recorded music is a narrow means of experiencing the rich human tradition of making song. I am not some contra-dancing hippy, or folk music afficionado. However, I know how to play a few instruments, and when I get home from work my own music usually fills my house. The pleasure you can get from doing something like this more than justifies the expense of buying an instrument.

    Cheap instruments from China are available over eBay at prices that are outrageous. Buy a cheap instrument and find some people who play to hang out with – the next thing you know, your love for music will have grown deeper and more profound than it ever would have by limiting yourself to recordings of other people’s music.

  • Bob

    Im not surprised you were dissapointed with the System of a down cd. Considering they absolutely suck.

  • music lover

    Sorry, but on my salary, i just simply can not afford to pay £12.99-£16.99 (sometimes even more) on a single CD.

  • Karmakin

    “Theft” in this case, is a bit more tricky. Mainly because when you’re talking about theft, you’re not punishing someone because they got something for nothing, you’re punishing someone because somebody else LOST something, that they don’t have anymore.

    It’s not theft. It’s copyright infringement.

    And the actual damages really do depend on the intent of the downloader. If the downloader has a ton of MP3s that they listen to all the time, because they were too cheap to buy the album, the damage done is about 15 bucks or so.

    If the downloader was simply trying to sample new music, so they could find new stuff they like, to buy more CDs/go to more concerts, then the damages, believe it or not, are negative. Companies routinely PAY for promotion. It’s true! So the actual damages are literally less than zero.

    I don’t P2P anymore, mainly because services such as allow me to sample new music for free, and give me intelligent ideas of WHY it’s sampling that music to me. The RIAA should have launched a similar service ASAP in the face of Napster. It would have given them market information on what people want to listen to, as well as directing consumers towards that which they wanted.

  • Anonymous

    Everything you say is completely niave and childish. Every company that has ever existed (profitably) has wanted to make money. It isn’t fair to blame them for this. Would you go to work if you were forced to give away the money you made that day to some person on the street?

    Furthermore, 12 – 16 dollars is pence when compared to the artists work (other than rap, perhaps ^_^). I don’t think you understand how much work it is to make a single song, let alone a CD’s worth. Also, who are you to say that simply because you only liked 2 songs on an album, that no one else will?

    Drop CD’s to 5 dollars and the initiative to do so much as make a CD would deminish.

  • shane solo

    Brian, I really dug your rant…but it kinda ended with a fizzle. You’re right on the money with everything you’re saying though – I’d just like to see you work out more of a bang ending to your opinion piece. Keep writing, boy.

    – s

  • RockANDorRoller

    #46, your comment was idiotic and contradicting.
    In one breath you blow off rap music, and in the
    next your arguing that songs someone hates others
    like? WTF?

  • agent smith

    #46 most probably works for some stinking capitalist greedy corp label. beats me.

    lets get one thing straight: you can retail cd’s for less than 8 bucks and still have everyone within the produce process of that CD with more than enough profit. but they won’t… BECAUSE THEY ARE GREEDY!!!

  • Steven Haddix

    Its about time someone really put everything into words, i really like this artical and think its well though out. I agree with what you say and hope to see more people like you speaking out.

  • Dave
  • Lucidles

    Hi All

    It’s a good artical in that it at least brings the topic to book. I have been downloading for years and I can honestly say that the only winners are the music industry and of course me. To qualify that I’ll say this.

    I am as tight as a ducks a***. When it comes down to buying music for myself, no way. You’d have to jemmy the money outta my pocket.

    Now the only exceptions to this are if I’ve downloaded something and I have been listening to it and it’s grown on me. I would probably want the original disc with associated artwork etc.

    Now I’m not saying I would rush out and buy it. I would probably drop hints around my family hoping to get the said CD for xmas or my birthday (told ya I was tight). This does mean however, that downloading works for the record companies. They may lose some deals but they win on others.

    P2P filesharing has been around a while now and I don’t see the record companies going to the wall just yet.


    Les (deep pockets) Watts

  • MrCorey

    You know, the $5 cd is possible. The last one I bought cost just that. I got it from the band selling it during a concert. They produced it themselves and they didn’t lose any money selling the cd to me at $5. The difference? All of the songs were awesome! There’s no reason the big record companies couldn’t produce quality and sell it at a reasonable price to profit. Of course, they should start selling electronically more, as this whole physical medium thing is getting to be passe.

  • duffman

    ohh cmon, the soad cd isnt that bad! and who buys their cds anyway? they made the album “steal this album” for a reason, you know. they dont care if u download. they get money from concerts anyway

  • ubrayj02

    I know I’m going to be comment number one million, but I have to get this out:

    Listening to recorded music is a narrow means of experiencing the rich human tradition of making song. I am not some contra-dancing hippy, or folk music afficionado. However, I know how to play a few instruments, and when I get home from work my own music usually fills my house. The pleasure you can get from doing something like this more than justifies the expense of buying an instrument.

    Cheap instruments from China are available over eBay at prices that are outrageous. Buy a cheap instrument and find some people who play to hang out with – the next thing you know, your love for music will have grown deeper and more profound than it ever would have by limiting yourself to recordings of other people’s music.

  • Fred

    Lots of bickering as usual, ok here in the uk is a band called artic monkeys. They released some tracks on their website – and encouraged people to share their music. They got popular, bidding war erupted with labels and they got an indy label. That is the way to do it, rather than release a naff CD with 50% good and 50% not good traxx.

    I do buy CD’s but usually from independent sites. As for downloads, almost all from usenet as the bt sites are full of pop :(

    Not interested in DRM laden files that let me play on wmp instead of winamp and only allow me to listen to it for as long as the licence runs…

  • adam

    its stealing. someone is ripping the music off of a cd and somewhere along the line you download it. whether or not you like the music after you buy the cd is your problem. if you want to preview a cd borrow someones who has bought it already. quit blamming the industry because your too cheap to buy a cd. complain about things that are outragously priced, say gas for example.

  • Anarchy

    Id just like to add that I think this also is starting to apply to both movies and expectally games as well who wants to spend AU$100 on a crap game?

    Thanks for the good read Im happy to see that Im not the only one that hates how nothing good lasts anymore.

    If we stand together in time they will get the idea if they drop prices that we will buy more. Till then…

  • Tim The ToolMan

    i think if the cheap record companies want to continue to stop dowloading of music they should be forced to keep a database of all the songs i have purchased in the past present and future all the way from 8 tracks to current , if i have purchased the songs in the past i should still have rights to them, and if i have lost them or have them on media that is obsolete then they should have to provide me with a new copy. i would be happy to pay the 10 – 20¢ to cover the cost of the media. if this was made possible i would love to see the costs inflicted on them to creat and maintain the database. Rights are Rights if i have bought it once i shouldnt have to buy it again.

  • alienrhino

    I will point out to all of you , that A) it’s already too late for the music industry, they have seen the writing on the wall , and us as consumers have now sen the light, b)any one who posts on here telling you , that you are stealing , is some one in the music business whose way of life and means of making him/her rich is going away. c) this happened not so long ago with VCR’s in the early eighties, the movie industry hemmed and hawed until they realized just in the nick of time that they too could make money off the business model.young people are more powerful than ever and the internet has become the great equalizer!
    d) the music industry does lie cheat and steal , not us! take for instance evry single rap artist , look at them on the mtv cribs shows! open your eyes , where did that new 90,000 gold plated hummer come from? you think some dumb ass artist like 50 cent earned enough money with one album right off the bat to go purchase a 70,000 sq foot mansion , all the things that go with it? while some one like alanis morrisette had to peddle her wares for years before getting signed with a decent label? the music industry treats its artists like whores in the red light district.
    i dont hear that cry baby from metallica any more complaining , perhaps he has seen the light, why sell 6 million cds at 20+ bucks a pop, and get a small cut , when you can sign, with a online retailer/distributor and sell 60 million downloads
    at a dollar? oy yeah now i know why cuz lars is stupid! just like all the rest of them. napster was just the beginning, bittorrents are just a taste of whats to come! time for the music industry to face the MUSIC!

  • Oolon_Colluphid

    You can test drive a car before buying it. Why not test drive a CD?

  • Troy

    If you want to support your favorite band go see them live in shows, thats where the money comes from.

  • puck

    You all raise good points. There is one thing to keep in mind. Microsoft is as big as they are today because of pirating. Back in the 80’s, DOS was pirated all the time. What happened? People became familiar with it and wanted to keep using it. Those people then taught others how to use it and it became the operating system of choice. Pirating also helped make Metallica the juggernaut they used to be. if it wasn’t for tape trading, their underground following would not have built up like it did and they might not have ever been signed. Piracy can be a tool and those who can’t see it are doomed and Lars is hypocritical for going after napster. The music industry as it is will die if they can’t learn to embrace how we do things now. The key to survival is adapting, if the music industry keeps insisting on keeping it’s old static business model, then they deserve to die. Hopefully, a new system will come out of it that is more efficient and will be fairer to artists and consumers.

  • Col

    You can’t tell Nickleback from Nicklecreek?

    Er if you can’t tell the difference between folk mandolin tinged three piece groups and radio friendly can write an intro but not much else Nickleback grunge-lite then you really need to start listening to some of that vast music collection of yours

  • Lawyer

    Karmakin said:
    “It’s not theft. It’s copyright infringement.

    And the actual damages really do depend on the intent of the downloader. If the downloader has a ton of MP3s that they listen to all the time, because they were too cheap to buy the album, the damage done is about 15 bucks or so.”

    Unfortunately though, the pro-industry laws also give the option to recover statutory damages at 50k a pop (RIAA has been trying to say that each song = 50k of damages), and you need not prove intent for statutory damages, just that infringement occured. Scary stuff. F*** the RIAA.

  • infinite

    If it weren’t for file sharing, Apple wouldn’t be able to find the market for their Ipod that holds 500 Hours of music. NO ONE can afford 500 hours of music at $18 a CD.

    Hey, Steve Jobs: When you attack file sharers, you attack your customers. You lose sales.

    If I could have a collection of the best songs ever made, they wouldn’t fill an Ipod halfway. If it weren’t for file sharing, no one would have a use for the Ipod.

    Steve Jobs is benefitting more than anyone knows from file sharing.

  • Ogremeister

    Although I am certain noone cares about an individual opinion anymore, here’s mine.

    Regardless of wether or not downloading is stealing, regardless of wether or not the music industry sucks, and regardless of wether or not your really
    “just sampling the music to buy later” – The music industry will remain filthy rich, and the artist will remain filthy rich, becuase such a small percentage or ALL PEOPLE THAT LISTEN TO MUSIC know how to efficiantly download what they want.

    If a band called “NickelDick” was on on MTV, and with no downloading sold 100,000 albums resulting in millions of dollars, then with downloading (taking even HALF of the sales which is completely far fetched) the “NickelDicks” would still be millionairs.

    So, in conclusion, if the damn greedy bastards are so swinely concerned with taking your money, maybey they should change the title of their band to “I Want Your Only Nickel Becuase I’m a Selfish Greedy Bastard”

  • Music fan

    I would like to say that I am a huge fan of music, but not the music industry. This industry doesn’t treat the consumer like it cares about what we really want. I want to feel like our opinions really matter. I think downloading music for free, whether illegal or not, should be our right!! Especially after the way they have treated us all!

    I will never buy anything Metallica or Sony related again. Metallica used to care about music, and their fans. Now they are millionaires who try to sue their fans because they charge to much for their “new” watered down music they produce just to make more money. And Sony puts viruses on their CD’s to try to see if they are being copied. And this is to the people who actually purchased the CD. I think the industry is bullshit and getting music for free is our only way to thank them for fuckin us for all this time!!

  • Pyro

    As with all arguments, there are obviously two sides. On one hand we have the poor person who only wants some bloody good music once in a while and on the other we have ‘the industry’ which ‘relies’ on people buying their cds to make money. Then in turn they can continue hiring more musicians to make music, and apparently if we all downloaded, they would shut down.

    Being just a guy who wants to occasionally listen to good music, I do download most tracks, and I agree with most people on here, most albums these days are just filler and two or three tracks actually stand out.

    It ‘seems’ all three parties are, at least in part, at fault here, we the downloaders, the industry, and the musicians. They fail to provide us with what we call ‘good’ music.
    But then isn’t that the industry’s fault for manufacturing all these pathetic bands who want to make a quick few million? But then isn’t that because we downloaders are no longer buying cds, and the recored labels can no longer afford good musicians?

    It seems like a vicious cycle to me, a very vicious one indeed.

    Well it must have started somewhere, and I’ll tell you where it did. Right at the top, some corporate exec decided to rip off all its customers by producing crap, calling the best thing since sliced bread, then charging us tenfold of what it should actually cost.
    Why would someone do this? Well why does anyone do anything these days? I’ll tell you, to make money.

    Yes it’s true, the industry doesn’t care about you, it cares about your money, and so do most musicians.

    However, they want our money? How about trying to earn it? As long as you make bad songs and try to rip me off by selling it for about £15, there will be people all over the world who are willing to rip you off too, downloading the only decent songs on that piece of shit you call an album.

    Not only is it about money, but customer satisfaction. And I can tell you, there are a lot of unhappy customers.
    The sooner they realise this, the better… For all of us.


  • Guppusmaximus


    I do think you’re alittle off base… The industry will never “Shut down” because most of the people buying what’s “Hot”(CDs & Mp3s online) are kids and teenagers. Plus, you can’t lump all labels in the “Industry” catagory because there are some decent record companies trying to promote all good bands(Century Media is one). They are at the mercy of Conglomerates like Time/Warner who are destroying the decent labels with their monopoly on Distribution because it doesn’t matter who signs you if they can’t get your CD to a store in an economic fashion.

    So while,”Illegal” downloading may take a few pennies away from the big boyz, it definately helps the little guy even if alot of people are trading their Mp3s. Then music lovers don’t have to rely on the Mainstream mode in order to get the music they want. They’ll download a few songs by a band that they are interested in and if they like it, they will buy it online from whomever they want.(Me: If I truly love it…I’ll buy the CD)

    I can only wait for the time when T1 and faster become the mainstream so we can all download WAV or Ogg Vorbis in the same amount of time as an Mp3. That,(being audio quality) I believe is the ultimate reason why P2P will never kill the music industry… They are still trying to get back to Analog via the Non-generational loss digital format and we are still aways away on a consumer level, which is the only level I have knowledge of.

    And, like one other article I have read, you can now use Bit Torrent. So much for P2P…Technology is already on it’s way….

  • Dan

    Yeah, I agree with #65, you don’t have the right to talk about music if you can’t tell the difference between bluegrass and buttrock.

  • Not a Thief

    I’m not going to read all of the comments to see if this has already been stated or not.. but here goes.

    It’s not theft, it’s called copyright violation for a reason. Again, it’s NOT THEFT. There’s a law on the books for this exact thing because it’s not the same as theft.


  • RedTard

    Does it make you feel special to bash the big bad evil record label. Everyone thinks their so cool when they throw around words like indy and underground.

    The reason your crappy little ‘indy’ bands are independent is because they suck. Go ahead, if you think you can recognize talent as well as the big boys start your own label.

    Finally, please stop downloading that crappy, pop shit and the RIAA will shut up. You claim it sucks anyway. I think people in the US should respect the rights to intellectual materials.

    You think it’s funny when you make a cheap copy of someone else’s work. We’ll see how funny it is when an Indian or Chinese company makes a cheap copy of your work and puts you back in the unemployment line.

  • James B.

    A person lives in a foreign country.
    There is no way to get the music they like whatsoever.
    They download it.

    Is the artist really losing money?
    Money that the artist never would’ve gotten in the first place.

  • gypsyman

    Interesting little footnote: A Canadian recorde company, Nettwerk, who produces Barenaked Ladies, Avril lavinge, Sarah McLaclin, and Sum41 are taking on The RIAA and helping one of the families who are being sued by them.

    They think suing idividual downloaders is counterproductive to their artists and would like to figure out a less confrontational means of dealing with downloading.

    They will pay the families legal fees and if they lose whatever fine is imposed by the courts.

    They said that Suing music fans is not the solution it’s the problem


  • Jody

    I also agree with you all, plus with sites like “myspace” we can also sample bands as well. is the myspace of my favorite band ever, their second cd commes out soon, and I know they will be huge, because TALENT sells, if you have a record label that will back it. Warner/American, a merger of 2 okay labels was created to help band like Luna Halo get out there, and push talent, instead of re recorded crap. Thank you


    BTW, I download a tremendous amount, but before my car got broken into, my cd collection was over 500, I’m back to about 300, and I buy and sell all the time.

  • Ogremeister

    #74 – RedTard

    Do you really believe that for downloading music, the economy in the US should be destroyed by the same corporate scum that is the music industry?

    I understand your legitimate distaste with people getting high and mighty about things they don’t understand. But in all my days I’ve never seen something so discusting as your comment.

    Where I live in Colorado Hewlet Packard, Celestica, and Agilent Technologies all used to be prominent employment for well over a third of the city, now that has dropped below 1/10 due to moving jobs to India.

    I don’t believe it is something to laugh at when thousands of people are kicked to the streets in order for a corporation to collect more wealth at the expense of it’s loyal workers.

    I’ll ask once again, is downloading an MP3 really the equivalent here?

  • RedTard

    Where in my post did I say that the US economy should be destroyed?

    I didn’t. I simply think people should have more respect for copyrights. The US spends billions on research to develop new products, technology, and yes even music, software, and movies every year. Foreign countries like India and China freely steal our intellectual property and make cheap copies overseas (with cheap labor of course). This worldwide pressure forces our businesses to cut corners, like outsourcing, to compete.

    If we can’t protect people’s right to their own ideas then the foundation of our economy takes a huge hit. I’d rather pay a few bucks and maintain the integrity of our system than download a few lame Britney Spears songs, but that’s just me.

  • Scott Butki

    I’d rather ban Britney from the music industry,thus increasing the industry’s integrity, but that’s just me.

  • Pete

    Buying music is like buying a book. You only buy a book if you like the author and hope that it is good! If you buy it and 10 pages into it decide that it sucks…you can’t go trying to bring it back because 5 out of 50 pages were the only good reading material…..

  • HS

    The industry is massproducing music, just like the cheap paperback books at the airport. Those books contain same story over and over again, just different names and places in there. Cheap, but only for entertainment. While the music industry have the same low quality on their product, they still sell their music like it’s top-notch. I totally agree with Brian. Lower the price or raise the quality. That’s the answer. Downloading is not the problem, it’s the symptom of the real problem.

  • DaleJWilliams

    I live in Australia. Here it’s mainstream or nothing. American Indie artists, of which my favourites are in the metal scene, are rarely stocked by most places here, with the exception of stores that make a hell of an effort to do so – even then, the selection is usually sub-par. (Australian Indie artists don’t get much of a go either, occupying only small sections of the stores that sell American Indie.)

    The ability to download music has given me the advantage of trying out music, that I need to order internationally, before I go through the strenuous process of ordering by $US and waiting the time it takes for the package to arrive. If I didn’t download, I would refuse making the purchase due to ignorance of the selection I would be making.

    As for the big labels, well, this article is correct. Countless times I’ve seen a once-decent band pressured into a less-than-decent release on a big label. Those are the only ones that make it to the mainstream CD stores. Fuck paying $30 for the death of expression. That’s right, in Australia the CDs cost $25-30, which is substantially more than the american price, even once converted to Australian dollars.

    I’ve also noticed that the materials mainstream CDs are being made with are getting more flimsy. I have a 12 year old “Live – Throwing Copper” CD that has outlasted a 2 year old “Juliana Theory – Love” CD.

    Where the fuck did my thirty bucks go?

    Try before you buy. Downloading is insurance, and sometimes due to the flimsy nature of CDs, the replacement policy that we should be getting.

  • Dreoilin


    go to clik sounds and select the “mp3″ video file.

    “I don’t know if any of you remember the taping songs from the radio crisis”

  • anonymous

    This is probably not gonna be read but I want to comment anyway. First off #33 said to syCHO that $3 is not the same as $15. I just need to say that you are a moron. If you actually read his comment you will realize he said that 3 songs for $3, which would be $1 per song, is the same as 15 songs for $15 dollars, get what also $1 per song. He wasn’t saying $3 & $15 was the same. Now, to OmegaRED: ‘You are not entitled to good music’? What are you talking about! We are entitled to good music because we the consumers are the ones who buy the music if we like it. It is our money that is paying for the CD. It’s the same thing with actors/actresses and movies. We are entitled to good movies and the actors/actresses wouldn’t be where they were if it wasn’t for the fans, same for the musical artists. I would have to agree with the people saying that it is the fault of the recording labels for crappy music, because all they want to do is get out more CDs so that they can get more money. They don’t care whether the songs are good or not. Also, the fact that it only cost, like 50 cents to a dollar (at most) to make a CD, the recording companies do not need to charge 15 bucks for the CD. And as somebody said, concerts and stuff like that are really where the artists make there money. And to the person that said something about $40+ for DVDs, I have no idea where you are shopping, because I sure as hell don’t spend that much when I buy DVDs. But, back to the topic. If the recording companies cared about there consumers they would make sure the music the artists under them put out was of good quality.

  • Poop Head.

    I’d sooner buy AIDs than another CD

  • Concord_Dawn

    Well, here’s one thing I have to say to all those people who think downloading music is stealing. FUCK YOU. This article has it dead right. The music industry IS filled with all this shit like Britney Spears and Beyonce, and why? Because the corporate backers of the labels want money, and sex sells. You know those interviews with big recording artists who are like “I try to keep it real”? Don’t believe them. If they were trying to “keep it real”, they wouldn’t sign with a big label and instead would produce with a smaller one, where it’s less about the money and more about the talent. And with the invention of the internet, shit, don’t even get me started. the RIAA and MPAA can go to HELL. They don’t want me to “steal” my music? Then how about you stop stealing from me. I don’t want to watch/listen to the same old shit every day. And you might try and say to me, “Then listen to a different genre”. I LISTEN TO HARDCORE AND DRUM & BASS. End of discussion. You want to know why I opened an Amazon account? Simply to get Bonkers, etc. because I couldn’t buy them at my HMV, where they rip me off anyways. Face it people, the whole music industry is in an upheaval because they aren’t in control anymore. You know what I think when I see those “Pirating is theft.” ads on movies that my parents buy? I’ll tell you. “Wow, they really have no fucking clue.” No fucking clue that, with the invention of the internet, the consumer has become more aware about how the big corporations are trying to fuck them over. And so that is why I will NEVER buy any CDs from a large label. In fact, I will burn my own copies and give them to people! For me, this whole music piracy thing is not about saving money. It’s about boycotting the big labels and showing them that I won’t let them fuck around with me anymore.

  • babes r us

    i just thought it was funny you cant hear a difference between nickelback to nickel creek. one is a generic piece of crap, and the other is a quite talented indie/country band.

  • Mikey Boy :)

    who cares that i download music illegally!!! i wouldn’t buy the fucking thing anyway! i would just borrow it from someone else and copy it, i REFUSE to pay £15+ for a FEW decent songs when the music industry are rich stuck up stupid robbing cunts anyway…. FUCK YOU Record industries!!! GO GET A REAL JOB… FUCKING CUNTS!!!!! i say anyone that works for the them are just conning bastards that need to be shot :)

  • B Bitch

    @ Omega Red

    why don’t you stop whining man. The music business just have to find a way to make their money somewhere else, cause there ALWAYS will be people ripping cds and putting them on the net. And if i have to choice to buy a cd or to dl it, my choice is already made up. DL the shit, it’s free and it’s easy. There are millions of ways to do it, p2p, torrents, blogs, irc, newsgroups… Copy controlling cds won’t help either in my opinion, some geek will find way to copy it anyway, it’s like giving them a challenge.

  • Kuma

    Music downloading is a victimless crime. Like punching someone in the dark.

  • http://0587 kisskiss


  • Releds

    Honestly, I’ve bought more CDs as a result of downloading than I would have otherwise. If it wasn’t for me being bored some late night, I’d never have heard of The Decemberists, The Faint, or VNV Nation, bands I have grown to adore as much as staples of my musical collection, such as AFI (Although they might be going downhill if STS is any idication of things to come), and Floyd.

  • Demonica

    I can go to a library and loan a book – for free. It hasn’t cost me a penny. Couldn’t libraries be accused of illegally disributing copywritten works? They buy one copy and then share it amongst a vast number of people. So why aren’t authors and book companies kicking up against this scam? I mean, for every person who loans a book from the library, that’s one less book sale….surely? Ahh..but this ‘library’ system is state-sanctioned because every person has the ‘right’ to be able to read and be educated. But what about the writers who must surely lose a lot of revenue because of this? I don’t see anyone complaining about this system of ‘file sharing’, even though creative people are losing money because of it.

    As for the issue of downloading – I’m a bit on the fence about this. But I will say this – I have music up on the net that people can download/listen to for free. I have absolutely no problem with that. My problem would be in other people making money off it or claiming it as their own work. But I see neither of these things happening with downloading, just people wanting to listen to music they like. Is it really any different to when people taped music off the radio many moons ago? We were told then that that would kill off the music industry. It never happened – so is it any wonder that we are somewhat sceptical when they wheel that old chestnut out again?

    And, lastly, think on this: if you have ever lent someone a DVD, you have breached copyright laws. Don’t think so? Read that disclaimer that says ‘no unauthorised hiring or lending’. So when are the big boys going to clamp down on those evil criminals who lend DVDs to their friends? Isn’t that also a form of ‘file sharing’…? Hmmmmm..?

  • Nefariouz

    My friend lent me a burned cd of a band… I liked it and that same week went and bought two of their cds…. then I bought the latest a while back and hated it…. And guess what… I gave that last cd I bought to the friend who introduced me to them. Why? Because it sucked. *gasp* That’s right I did it. Come get me.

    But oh yea, when I ripped them on my computer… gay windows media player put protection on it. All of the sudden I couldn’t play my own music ripped of my own damn legal cds! I searched forum after forum for help. Didn’t get shit.

    I ended up having to reinstall XP just to hear music that came WITH MY COMPUTER. How ridiculous is that?

    I never bought cds on a regular basis… In fact, I haven’t bought any cds since. And no, I don’t pirate music.

    Downloading may not be physically stealing but your not just screwing the greedy corporations… the artists are the ones losing here imo.

    And you ask for a reason why not to? Because of the work put into it. It takes time and effort even if it is a “crappy” group, to record, publish and distribute that crap. You don’t just snap your fingers, or click a button and poof… you have a record in stores and ready to sell (unlike when you download). So preview the music on offical sites (yahoo, rhapsody, etc)… then buy it. Most of the time it’s free. Don’t bitch about buying something when you could check it out first hand… even if you do download it first. And to be honest I don’t care if you download it first… just as long as you don’t sit on your ass and decide not to buy it if you like it.

    Same with movies… in fact it takes a hell of a lot more people to produce one… again even a crappy one. And I rarely go out to watch movies because the prices here are nuts… throw in some snacks, and your pretty much putting out a down payment on a car. I rent instead.

  • Stin

    Artists need to sell about a million cds to just break even usually because the record companies take such a large portion of their profits. Artists make their money from their tours not cds. I say download the music and if you like it go to their concerts.

  • yarbles

    I worked as a producer in the software industry making video games and have first hand been witness to outright deceptive tactics used by management to get products sold. Everyone in the industry knows that the bulk of games developed and sold are not worth the discs they are printed on. But the way the industry works – you open the game it’s yours to keep – the money is theirs either way. All publishers rely on junk to increase their bottom line. Same with the music industry. Let me clarify what it actually costs the music industry to manufacture one of the $15-18 CD’s.

    First off, the publishers do get the bulk of the income from sales, which are exchanged for ‘the risk’ of putting it to market. If it doesn’t sell enough to cover costs – the publisher eats it, not the artist (just less royalties). Because music from album to album can go from an outstanding bestseller to flopping garbage, the artists are not willing to risk everything. Just look at how Michael Jackson lost the Beatles rights to Sony.

    Knowing first hand how little it costs to manufacture a disc I went to a site that let me use its pricing generator (U.S. pricing) get a cost of goods ‘COGS’ estimate of 50k units. Keep in mind the higher duplicated units, the lower the price for each unit. Plus companies doing multiple orders generally have bulk pricing discounts given in custom contracts with the manufacturer. So expect these estimates to be higher than what a major label really pays. The manufactured disc in question would consist of:
    1) Standard audio disc with full color silkscreen CD label art
    2) Jewel Case with transparent inner tray
    3) Full color tray art (inner tray and tray back)
    4) 6pg full color foldout card
    5) Shrink wrapping

    Final price: A whopping $.767 per unit (yes – just above 75 cents!). Additional costs include a one time ‘5-color silkscreen’ fee for the CD label of $99 for this or all future orders using that same CD label. To cut down on costs, companies can shed pennies here and there by using 3 color art on the CD labels, use 1 or 4pg inserts using black and white print. I did another quote using 1pg single card insert (color front & grayscale back), only a back tray card (grayscale) and duo-tone CD label. The price then dropped to only $.65 (no additional fees) per unit for the same 50k order saving $5850 on COGS. The same two scenarios now calculated at 100k units are $.707 & $.59 respectively saving the record label an additional 6k by duplicating twice the order size.

    I was working with DVD’s at the start of the DVD ‘revolution’ and can easily see how CD prices would have been very high in the beginning due to COGS. New technology, limited manufacturers, higher printing prices & the use of those giant full color cardboard boxes were the main reasons for high initial prices. To give perspective in relation to DVD’s; Initial orders of silver DVD’s were insane, I saw COGS on just the disc as high as $10 a unit. Glass mastering costs and just the expense of DVD development were not much better. First runs of 1x pioneer external SCSI burners were 5k each & $50 a blank disc. Final mastering had to be done using an expensive 24k program writing to DLT-tape. But now development is a breeze and duplication pricing is not much higher than CDs ($1=DVD-5/case/full color case art, add $.2 for a DVD-9).

    Of course there are other factors to consider: shipping, shelf space costs, returns, marketing etc. The largest cost of course being the marketing costs – which is passed onto the consumer either way.

    These companies are raking in money – just not as much as they used to. Shareholders and top brass are not happy. Who cares? Their goal is to get as much money from you as you are willing to pay and will continue to shovel crap down your throat just as long as the old paradigm continues to work. You don’t even want to know how much it’s costing them to host these files digitally. Let’s just say, bandwidth is dirt cheap now.

    I’ve seen some recent press reports regarding record companies not being happy with current online pricing and wanting to raise it. Of course they are not happy – they never will be. Their goal is to make as much money as possible. Personally I spent way too much money ‘back in the day’ on cassette tapes and CD’s that were listened to once and forgotten. I’m more than willing to buy discs time and time again from artists that make great ‘albums’. Finding these artists requires work and investigation. Thus the benefits of P2P file sharing over MTV-hype marketing. I wouldn’t go to a restaurant that served me a bowl of shit and eat it with a smile. These publishing companies can remain faceless thus can get away with serving you shit over and over again. File sharing seems to be one of the only effective ways to get your voice across. Why? It hits them where it counts, the bottom line. Perhaps some progressive CEO will pull his head out is ass and realize WHY people have become apathetic towards copyright laws. Until then we do what we must to weed through the valleys of rough to find the occasional diamonds.

  • jason mog


  • Guppusmaximus

    “Knowing first hand how little it costs to manufacture a disc I went to a site that let me use its pricing generator (U.S. pricing) get a cost of goods ‘COGS’ estimate of 50k units…”

    And that’s just for Joe Schmoes like yourself. Imagine how little it costs for the actual record label especially if they bought one of these manufacturing plants…

    I say…FUCK EM!! Remember the saying,”Time is money” well how much time have they stolen from your life if you sit through a shitty movie?? Or listened to a shitty cd or watched a crappy “Reality” show?Do you think anyone in charge actually watches or listens to this shit?? They just pay someone to do it for them. It’s a Fucking Conglomerate anyways!! They are getting you at every end:

    (info from:–ID__102518–/free-co-subs.xhtml)

    Subsidiaries/Affiliates Covered By Hoover’s
    America Online, Inc., Inc.
    America Online Latin America, Inc.
    AOL Access Business
    CompuServe Interactive Services, Inc.
    AOL Music Now LLC
    AOL (UK) Ltd., Inc.
    Moviefone, Inc., Inc.
    Singingfish, Inc.
    Xdrive, Inc.
    ContentGuard, Inc.
    Courtroom Television Network LLC
    Home Box Office, Inc.
    HBO Films
    New Line Cinema Corporation
    Fine Line Features
    Time Inc.
    Essence Communications, Inc.
    IPC Group Limited
    Southern Progress Corporation
    Synapse Group, Inc.
    Time Warner Book Group Inc.
    Time Warner Book Group UK
    Time4 Media, Inc.
    Time Warner Cable Inc.
    Road Runner Holdco LLC
    Time Warner Telecom Inc.
    Turner Broadcasting System, Inc.
    Cable News Network LP, LLLP
    The Cartoon Network LP, LLLP
    TBS Inc. International
    TBS Superstation, Inc.
    Turner Network Television LP, LLP
    Turner Sports, Inc.
    Atlanta National League Baseball Club, Inc.
    Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.
    Castle Rock Entertainment, Inc.
    DC Comics Inc.
    Vertigo Comics
    WildStorm Productions
    Filmbank Distributors Limited
    Movielink, LLC
    Warner Bros. Home Entertainment Group
    Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment Inc.
    Warner Home Video Inc.
    Warner Bros. Television Group
    Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution
    Warner Bros. International Television Distribution
    Warner Bros. Television Production Inc.
    The WB Television Network
    Warner Independent Pictures

    Imagine what these assholes do to the Distrubution of “real” music?? Now you can figure out why it’s so hard to hear any good stuff!!

  • Guppusmaximus

    AND….I’m pretty sure Hoover’s doesn’t list it all for free because you have to pay for the real lists from them. So, there is probably more companies under that regime!!

  • han


  • TSeeker

    Ive got a few personal thoughts to share on this subject which I think will be of interest and may not have been fully expressed in this forum yet.

    Firstly I must state my I thouroughly believe music “piracy” to be a good thing, here are some of the reasons;

    As much as the music indurstry likes to claim file sharing will never destroy musicians and bands, it will only ever destroy the music industry, a process which will in turn lead to greater freedom, profits and acknowledgement for artists on the whole. The reasons for this are as follows;

    -Record Companies don’t care about artists they only care about how much money they can make out of them. In record contracts on major labels most bands typically recieve only 10 to 15 percent of royalties on record sales, furthermore out of those royalties are taken product packaging costs and repayments to the record company for services rendered (e.g. studio time, equipment hire, etc.)being that typically only 20% of albums released sell enough to cover these repayments this means FOR 80% OF ALBUMS RELEASED ARTISTS RECIEVE NO ROYALTY CHECKS ( So dont even fool yourself into thinking reocrd companies are in anyway generous towards artists.

    -The existence of record companies and their power results in a biased representation of the music scene. Record companies use their money and contacts to push certain artists (e.g. through advertising, plugging on MTV, etc). These bands are often just bands of little artistic integrity manufactured by record companies to cater for the tastes of an intellectually inferior demographic (As if we all have the same tastes anyway) easily susceptible to advertising or safe bets (Artists they know will sell just because they’re exactly like the last band that sold) While this happens the majority of artists go unheard of because of the emphasis placed on these other “artists” by record companies and because they dont have the resoursces to promote themselves on such a large scale. The result is consumers (thats us) lack perfect information (we dont know about all the artists out there and are largely limited to listening to the music pushed onto us by the record industry). Anyone with a base understanding of economic theory will tell you that perfect information is an essential requirement in the formation of a perfect market, and conumers in a perfect market are far better of than they otherwise would be.

    -Leading on; The only reason the music industry is so scared of music “piracy” is not because they care about artists well being but because file sharing and downloading on the internet takes their power away and makes them obsolete. With the dawn of the internet, record companies can no longer extort artists because they need them to pruduce their CDs and promote them, on the internet bands can promote themselves cheaply (how much does running a website cost these days?) and dont have to worry about how their gonna press their albums because people can download them, because people can download them, people can access their music more easily and find out about more bands (Since the dawn of file sharing I have listened to hundreds of artists whose albums I otherwise never would have heard.

    -More on why file-sharing doesn’t hurt artists; Artists have other ways of making money. Any descent musicain can play a live gig, they can charge money entrance to this live gig, going to a live gig is an experience that people will never be able to download. Also if bands took the intitiative to share their music for free on a website they could earn money form advertising revenues (e.g. banners and links), people would download music from their website as opposed to via a peer-to-peer system because it would be easier to find and probably of a better quality and quicker to download. Even if they didn’t earn X amount of millions from this WHO CARES, the few artists in the limelight probably earn to much anyway, any real musician (someone who loves making music as opposed to someone who loves the illusion of fame) would be happy to earn a decent yet modest liveing as long as this meant they could play music for a living.

    To conclude, it is my opinion that music “piracy” will lead to a much better music scene, more good artists will gain credibility on the value of their music and not on the value of their promotion, they will hopefully play more live gigs, which will hopefully be cheaper (because of more competition in the market), musicains wont earn a ridiculous amount of money to blow on coke and going into rehab but will earn a decent living supplemented by the joy they recieve from playing music, consumers will be immensly better off, they won’t have to pay extortionate amounts for albums, they’ll most probably be free, they’ll listen to so much more good music than they ever possibly could have, they’ll go to more gigs, this will inspire more people to play real music, their music will probably be better and more timeless because of the incredible depth of their influences, they’ll become acknowledged on the strenght of their great music not because some corporate dick spent loads of money on advertising, they’ll live a decent life supplemented by the joy they recieve from playing music………the process will repeat. Most importantly record executives wont recieve ridiculous amounts of money for doing nothing other than providing a brick wall between people and bands and charging everyone way over the odds for it.

    Sorry for the lenght, got carried away

  • Moses

    You guys find all sorts of ways to justify your theft. Your so lame, you claim to hate the music from the big record labels yet you can’t stop downloading it.

    Not buying their “crappy” cd’s would have the same effect and at least would be honest.

    To all you downloaders, quit kidding yourself, you are a loser who steals from others because your self – centered ass who can’t play an instrument and wanks off to Britney spears.

    Before I browsed this thread I thought the RIAA had crossed the line with it’s lawsuits, now I agree with them. I hope all of your end up in court for your theft.

  • Guppusmaximus

    Who the hell here downloads Top 40?? Certainly not me Jackass!!AND..If you are downloading that crap then I question your musical tastes and I hope it F*cking bankrupts all them Useless, Talentless Snobs!! Also, I have played the drums for 20 years,What do you play?? Punching the Clown to Ms. Spears is the only worthy thing I can think of when I see her face but that doesn’t make her an Artist unless she decides to make some porn!!

  • RockANDorRoller

    Wow! #103 your an idiot. I don’t really think the people posting in this blog listen to Britney Spears, like you presume in you comment.
    Anyway, cd’s suck ASS and are overpriced, and again,
    if I like somehting I hear I’ll cath them live.
    So fuck you.

  • manly machine

    I download tons of music every day for free and its not stealing its sharing

  • Screwy

    I’m not a large Robbie Williams fan, and I’m sure some people in America don’t even know who he is, but one thing that made me like him was that after he signed a multi-million dollar contract, he proclaimed loudly and happily to the press that everyone can go download/rip/share/steal his songs as much as they like – as it was only hurting the record company and not his fortunes. There was outrage and a big hoohah in the press but most of Britain clapped as this point was made.

    I completely agree with your article but I noticed a few other points have not been made – why are the record companies so upset with the public who are downloading, true there’s online payable downloads NOW but no-one questioned why Sony were making CD Burners and IPoD and etc, these companies aren’t naive, and while I thank them for giving us the means, others who have been sued/fined/whatever may not be so pleased that the record company went after individuals rather than the source.

    Futhermore I whole heartedly support free downloading, or Piracy as I suppose it’s called heh, the record company charges an obscene amount not just for the CD’s they are producing but to the bands for various advertising and music videos etc, the bands themselves barely receive anywhere near the percentage that the company makes off of them.

    So this is getting a little long, but I just wanted to make that point and remind people that although music is for the artist, its also for you, and you should buy what you Like, not make comprimises of your taste and money just for one or two songs that you’ve gotten stuck in your head.



    please do not describe yourself vulgarly as a “music wh$re” unless you actually happen to be a vermin-scum dogsh$t-gash or dogsh$t-dick cxxting dogsh$tty piece of total sh$t parasite-prostitute-on-planet-earth worthless piece of total dogsh$t sh$tty little cxxting dogsh$tty s$x-abuser vermin-scum wh$re who happens to buy a lot of CD’s?Otherwise just call yourself a rich boy who buys a lot of CD’s,o.kay!?It is just confusing to call yourself a “music wh$re” it infers you are a dogsh$tty-pr$stitute,which you may or may not be,i wouldn’t know, i don’t know how you waste your time.

    Yours sincerely,
    Marianna Jane Close (UK)



    Y’all Jus’ Lay-Off my Fantasy-Dream-Girl Britney Spears!I and i is goin’ to my Southern Belle!Y’all jus’ jealous cuz me ‘n’Brits as i call her,(like ye olde Brit Ekland Ya dig?LOL!)me ‘n’Brits is gittin’ down ‘n’gittin’ jiggy wid it and Y’all is jus’ jealous cuz Brits is Emo-Kewl an’ all and is down wid da suicidal tendencies!Y’all ain’t seen her Famous Awesome Music Vid:Baby one more time!?(I fainted from Ecstatic-Shock the very First -time i seen it!)Brits is gettin’ down wid da dark soulful lyrical-ting i and i is tellin’ Y’all!Brits is a sweet vanilla pod!Oh she whiter-than-white on dee outside but she a dark-sweet vanilla -seed on da inside.Ya Dig!?So Y’all jus’ Lay-off me ‘n’Brits cuz we is about to git married in-all and i and i is takin’- on her 2 po’r white-trash babies in-all and we is gonna live in a Trailer Park in the Nevada Desert and we is gonna go to Vegas and maybe We git lucky and hit the Jackpot in-all.So Y’all don’t know nuthin’ ’bout jus’ how river-deep an’ mountain-high my true-love 4 Brits is.




    Fartic Monkeys i mean!Arctic Monkeys were a completely manufactured pop band used for propaganda-purposes:Trouble -brewing in the Music Industry for the Giant Global Billion-Dollar- turnover Corporations!?Kids is gittin’ wise to how money works!?They done the Math already!?
    Answer:create a manufactured pop band and do the PR for them but make it look like they done it themselves and it is all a , one-in-a-million-chance
    that they got-lucky and got discovered !Then put them on an Indie label(To win kewl-points) then when they start to shift- MEGA G Units!?Sign them to a MAJOR LABEL like we intended to do so all-along!Brilliant!
    Do Arctic Monkeys write their own songs!?Don’t be so Silly!of course they don’t!Their Record Company pay someone to write them for them!D’oh!

    Yours sincerely, pissed-off at the despicable-inhumane-abhorrent-corruption and injustice-of-well-the-whole-world really,

    Marianna Jane Close


    google “courtney love” why the fxxk would anyone want to do that!?Oh!because souless putrid-sh*t-stnk*ng stupid wh$re courtney l$ve not content with raping her murdered -husband’s corpse for d$llars by hocking his personal private journals to the highest bidder then giving-away his dead-man’s clothes to whatever souless-moron she was screwing at the time her husband was murdered;finally realises she cannot live-off her dead-murdered husband’s fortune and fame 4ever?I see.i understand,everybody understands.nobody cares.

  • Phillip Winn

    Marianna, you may not like the Arctic Monkeys, and that’s okay. But they’re hardly manufactured, and your conspiracy theory about how they managed to be successful is a little strained.


    D’oh! in reference to the Robbie Williams scam-how dumb are you!?Don’t you think Robbie Williams has to pay that $100,000,000 sub back to his Record label!?Obviously he said that anyone can download4free his songs in agreement with his Record Label who estimate they will still make enough money out of this publicity stunt to reap-back in returns what they already paid-out in mass-marketing,PR,advertisements,packaging,make-overs etc to shift his stock in the record stores.Plus the fact he is basically saying: i am a greedy-pig(used choice- words carefully ,so as not to offend with what i could have written) and i don’t care cuz i got my $100,000,00!

    Is there noone here with a Economics from MIT!?

    Yours sincerely,
    Marianna Jane Close


    oh piss-off phillip go play your crappy kylie minogue CD’s and jerk-off!



    God knows how i ended-up here again of an evening,it jus’ seems the cookie crumbles that-way as-of-late.
    What i was really looking-for was The South African Primal Support Page,so fxxk knows how i ended-up here!?
    Cuz for whom i was searching-for, was my new-best-friend(sarky-but-not-in-a-nasty-way) LA Boy as i affectionately call-him.”sauvemontecristo” from LA age 26 years, whom i found on yahoo.primal-support-group;but unfortunately for him and me(he doesn’t know just what he is potentially missing-out on!(I can even home-cook a Roast Chicken Dinner);-)he ain’t writ me-back none.I guess he is just way too busy as they say in LA ,to writ-me-back in-all and so i guess he won’t be comin’-over to visit-me in-all this Summer for our Road Trip Tour of the British Isles(London,Oxford,Cambridge,The Picturesque Cotswolds,maybe the Lake District) an’-all nor nuthin’.I guess, i should jus’ try an’ forgit him-LA Boy.


    sic: $100,000,000
    i missed a zero-off my robbie williams-with- reference-to post-it;which in WALL STREET would be the equivalent fatal-human-error akin to flushing $90,000,000 down the toilet so-to-speak,which is a pretty -stupid mistake to make.



    p.s. i agree with thee whole payolla-scam thing being something-rotten-in-the-state-of-Denmark,to quote Shakespeare (Hamlet)(like Y’All don’t know unless Yo is a complete-and-utter-imbecile!?) just for emphasis in-all.
    Why Radio Stations not play more “Suicidal Tendencies”!?I LOVE SUICIDAL TENDENCIES!My favourite Suicidal Tendencies Song of-the-moment is:I SAW YOUR MOMMY…lol! i LOve DAt TuNe!WhY DeY NOt PlaY IT MOre ON CoLLeGE RaDiO StaTiOnS At-LeaSt !?LIKE WHRB OR WPRB?Whatever.



    la boy

    la boy please writ-me-back
    la boy-don’t the good lord let me turn to smokin’ crack
    la boy i miss you more each lonely day,
    la boy the sun -rise across yonder smouldering-hill,
    la boy-but all i feel is an icy-cold-chill in my bones.
    la boy please don’t mess me around
    la boy-else i be da laughin’ stock of da whole town.
    la boy we is meant -to-be,
    la boy-i knows it-you knows it 4 all-eternity.

    copyright(c) 27/02/2007
    marianna jane close

    dedicated to a complete-and-utter-stranger-the unknown la boy


    according to your blogcritics clock. 8 minutes past between my penultimate post-it and my last post-it(not including this post-it noting the passing-of-time-passed).Therefore it took me apporixmately 8 minutes to compose my ode to LA Boy.Not Bad!



  • Christopher Rose

    Hi Marianna, glad to see you’re working through your anger! Just one thing, please just use one name for yourself. Thanks.