Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Price war and access vs ownership

New variable pricing in iTunes, but *all* musi...Image by Lee Bennett via Flickr

With the announcement of variable pricing on iTunes, TechDigest ran a wonderful article on the whole idea of ownership in the new millenia.

The basic argument stems from the arrival of Spotify. If you have millions of tracks at your fingertips with instant access, why bother downloading - legally or illegally - mp3s?

The argument of mp3 vs CD has been raging for the last few years, with legal downloads quickly making some major headway, but it's interesting to read an article about the abandoning of purchase altogether.

I, for one, seem to spent more time than not on Spotify. True, they're missing a lot of material (mainly indie stuff and IDM stuff) and they're quite slow to fix bugs (there's a sequencing issue in a Tina Turner album I raised weeks ago that's unresolved), but it's still the best piece of software I've downloaded in ages and the best music listening experience I've had since I discovered burning MP3s to CD.

Will I continue to buy CDs? Occasionally. Will I continue to download illegal MP3s? Probably not. Will I continue to question access over ownership? Definitely.
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