Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Interesting music discussion on NPR

NPR posted a very interesting discussion about the state of the music industry as part of their Decade-In-Review this week.  The part that interests me is the mention of streaming music as a deterrent to illegal downloading.  Personally, I have pretty much stopped downloading songs because I can listen to most of them for free online any time I want.  It's convenient, and it really doesn't take much longer than opening an MP3 or finding a CD or record and playing it.  Sites like Myspace and Grooveshark give you so much music on demand, for free.  That has been the biggest change in my listening habits lately.  I think of a song, search for it on Myspace, and listen.  Nothing could be easier.

Of course, streaming has its downsides.  You need an internet connection to do it, and you need to be at your computer.  You can't stream while in your car or out for a walk.  I think streaming will be part of the public's listening habits in the future.  If you want to listen to something and you're at your computer, you can stream it.  If you want to take it away from the computer, you can buy it as a download or *horrors* buy it on CD (or whatever format wins out in the future).  Yes, I think there will always be physical music around.  Humans have too much experience owning things to give that up.

Streaming is the way of the future.  I can see a day when there are no record companies (or the companies exist only to promote the artist) and musicians make money by touring and selling merchandise.  Actual recorded music will be streamed for free and treated as the art it actually is. 

No comments: