Wednesday, 18 April 2007

DRM-Free, but still not a good enough deal ...

So, it's been a few weeks now that Apple and EMI announced their DRM-free initiative.
initially I was very excited about this because this was a necessary evolution if online music distribution is to grow into a long-term feasible business model since the usage of purchased music wasn't "flexible" enough in the current situation. Mainly due to limited usage permissions and device specific restrictions. The quality of the music is another obvious issue that needs to be taken into consideration.
But, is this sufficient to convince me to buy music online? Well, I'm afraid it isn't!

I again purchased 2 audio CDs on! WHY?
> Because the price was right (one was cheaper than iTunes, one was slightly more expensive but then again it was a Special Edition),
> because I can rip the CDs in the audio quality I choose,
> because I can Get the Album Artwork in iTunes anyway,
> because I use the audio CD as a perfect back-up,
> because I'm just old school about owning the little shiny discs,
> because buying online doesn't offer me any advantage (I don't mind waiting a day or two for my CD)!

1) If I was into alternative music, there would be a couple of reasons to indeed purchase music online. Maybe the music isn't available on any physical carrier, maybe it's only available on vinyl but I can't be bothered with vinyl, maybe online distribution offers a feasible distribution model to bands, musicians, performers that otherwise would never get published?
2) A wireless connected world, where my music is safely stored on a server that can stream my music (purchased, customised radio channels, etc.) to multiple streaming-enabled devices like my car stereo, my mobile phone (no more mp3 players needed, which explains Apple's iPhone I guess), my home entertainment system, portable audio devices, etc. In this context it is interesting to see how initiatives like MediaMaster will develop?

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