What is the world coming to?
Ok ok, so let's start from the beginning, shall we?
Here I am, happily hacking away at some packages, can't remember which and it doesn't matter.
As usual I had my earphones on to block the eternal chatter in the office and had my Last.FM client tuned to "My Neighbors" station.
And then it happened, Fergie came on, obscenely chanting about her "humps", which led to several things happening at once.
1. I snorted coffee all over my keyboard.
2. I had to yank the earphones off before the brain damage becomes permanent, and in the process the wire got pulled and now my earphones make scratchy noises if you move them.
3. Several light bulbs went off in my head, and last
4. Several kittens were found dead somewhere. (j/k)
So whoever of you 'neighbors' who put this POS up, this is for you: YOU OWE ME NEW HEADPHONES.
Seriously though, it got me thinking, when was it the last time I actually spent money on music that was NOT a streaming service? I actually had to think hard, and it was like 2 or 3 years ago. Last.fm actually serves my musical needs quite handsomely, they have about 80% of my musical preferences, AND the selection is getting bigger and bigger. How much does it cost? About CAD$42/year. Not bad considering that for the same money you can get at most 2 or 3 newly released CDs. And before any of you fine people tell me that my Last.fm account is not a paid one, I will tell you that I have two accounts for several reasons :)
So how many of you are actually still going out to buy records? Actually how many people did not stumble on the idea that buying music in physical form or by the unit off the internet is dumb?
Let me explain. I think buying CDs is way behind the times, why buy a whole CD for 20 or 30 bucks when you can get it off iTunes or similar for 99 cents a song? And WHY even do that when you are forced to use DRM and are restricted when you can simply subscribe to one of the many streaming services out there for a very low price?
If your argument uses any variation of "Internet is not available everywhere", you can stop right now. Satellite radio solves that quite nicely, and even if it is a bit expensive right now, I am sure the price will go down in the near future.
So why buy one song or a bunch of them or a whole CD and then have to manage your own storage? Why bother, when you can just have a service provider do all that for you?
As an example that is limited to internet access, Last.fm is amazing, you get access to whatever songs/albums/artists/genre they have from any computer. Move to another computer in a different country and your selection is still there. Are you on the road? Satellite radio is a beautiful thing, and you can even take it on the bus or to your desk. And best of all? It's all legal. No one can ever accuse you of 'piracy'. Arrrr.
This is probably scary for the record industry. I am sure they figured out that they will soon be out of the retail business, i.e., selling music by the unit, and they will have to go into the whole sale business. They will have to sell contracts to their whole collection to a provider, they cannot set their own prices anymore since providers can negotiate. Better still, a union or a consortium of "free agent" artists that sell content to providers, big label is not needed anymore. Scary huh? I hope so.
Maybe I am dreaming, but I really think that music storage will be a thing of the past. Ditto to record labels of the RIAA variety. And who knows, maybe it will be followed by the movie industry. Wouldn't that be nice?
And now back to more pressing matter:
1. Whoever of you 'neighbors' is listening to BEP, cut it out.
2. Whoever of you of put "My Humps" up there, send me new headphones, pronto.
3. If you don't, I'm filling the 'neighbors' list with Cannibal Corpse and Sodom.
That is all, back to Last.fm.
After writing this article, as if to annoy me further, the pussycat dolls came on.