OK, well maybe just the MP3 part is true, but the music industry has changed so dramatically since the introduction of MP3s that it's not even funny. Unlike CDs that replaced analogue tapes, MP3s are not just a new format to which you can listen to music, but also a means by which music can be distributed. I just read an article about the morals and legalities of MP3 sharing, and I would like to share my thoughts on it as well as hear yours.
First off, no matter how you phrase or explain your use of MP3s you download, downloading songs that are available for sale is stealing and stealing is illegal. I won't think any worse of anyone who downloads music because I've done my share of downloading in the past, but not anymore. Now, I'll buy records. What I do miss, however, is how when I was younger I would save up my allowance so that I could buy an album. The anticipation. It's kinda what you get when waiting in line to get into a concert. Nowadays that mentality has changed because if you can't afford it you can download it. Not a completely bad concept, but think of the long term effects. The music industry needs your dollar to survive and make more music.
As a music fan I didn't see why I should be deprived of hearing good music. As a musician I feared what the impact of downloading would have on my career. How would my album get on the album charts if people downloaded my music instead of buying it? How would my label, who's trying to make their money back from record sales, react come time to make a second album? Would they tell me that sales from my first album were so poor that there wouldn't be a second record? As a promotional tool, MP3s are no doubt a god send. At first I was blown away at the ability to share my music and have some from as far as Hong Kong download and listen to my music. The difference between someone downloading the music I put up on my website and downloading the latest Pearl Jam single is the fact that it was I who made my music available.
If any of you get further into your careers as musicians you will soon find out that file sharing is the enemy. If you are a starting out musician trying to expose and promote your music, then file sharing is good. If you are a signed artist trying to sell records and tour, then file sharing is bad. Think about this... A venue will book a band based on their popularity. How does one judge how popular a band is? Radio play and record sales. Now not every band gets played on the radio so the next thing people look at are record sales. But guess what? If your songs are being downloaded then record sales drop. And with no record sales your band looks like they have no fans. What venue would book you if they think you have no fans to bring to the show? See where I?m going with this? Truth is, there are pros and cons, but how do you regulate everything? How can struggling, new bands use MP3s to break into the music scene and how can they survive once they've made it? What are your thoughts on the uses of MP3s and file sharing?
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