Wednesday, June 10, 2009

10000 lawyers on the bottom of the sea

Ok, would I like to make a music video and then all the people watching it on YouTube instead of buying the record? Well... actually yes! If they like the song they will either buy the record or download it from a peer to peer network. And it beats people NOT watching my videos and listening to my songs.

I may not be the perfect example of a musician, since I don't sing, play or dance, but still, what happens on YouTube just doesn't make sense: Most of the cool videos of original songs were deleted! Even those with scenes from movies and such. Are actually the band members surfing the net, fishing for videos of their band and requesting their removal? NO! It's (again) the distribution companies, the record companies, that think this is some sort of way of either
  1. decrease piracy
  2. make some money out of Google
. And , at least for me, this makes me even less likely to apreciate that band and buy their album.

It all reminds me of what happened in my home country of Romania. After the revolution, nobody could be bothered with copyright laws, therefore the streets were littered with people selling pirated CDs. Then the economic stability brought some law enforcement (and widespread Internet) and now you can't find pirated CDs on the street anymore. Do people buy more music albums now?

In the end it is all about the ease of purchase. If you stumble upon a nice CD from a band you love, you will buy it, provided you actually use a CD player anymore. No one goes out of their way to a store specifically for music unless they are collectors. It's so much easier to just watch TV, listen to the radio or watch/listen to their Internet versions. Online stores are not much better. They anally query for all of your personal details in order to buy a crappy thing. It may work for electronics, but not for data!

Probably some day a brilliant idea - like combining IM identities with pay later accounts, or maybe vending machines with USB ports and touchscreens to load any music on your MP3 player for a fixed fee - will work, but until then, people will do what is the easiest thing to do. I mean, if writing music CDs and then distributing them is so damn expensive, why should I pay for it when getting the music online?

Do I feel a little guilty for listening to music and not paying for it? Yeah. But not that much.