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If only everyone bought the album they downloaded it would be great. My son's album debuted at number #10 on Billboard this week but would have been much higher on the charts but for the illegal downloads. The reviewers leak it and for three weeks a much anticipated album (and two years work by six talented musicians) has been enjoyed for free by over a hundred thousand. Hooray for people like you who buy music they like!! It keeps our boys solvent so they can continue to create more of the music their fans want. You are correct though, the fans do attend concerts in droves and many struggling bands nowadays make more money doing live appearances, concerts and selling merch than record sales.
jeanne - what's the name of your son's band? That's a pretty major debut to jump that high that quick...Don't worry, out of the hundred thousand mindless downloaders, a good number will like what they hear and indirectly spread the word or buy into the band in some other way.If the music is good: it will connect, excite and inspire fans, and they will spend more on it.The internet has irrevocably altered the scene - accessing music this way can't be undone or wound back, even if you are someone like Lars Ulrich. The point is bands work with it - to promote, to involve their fans, to sell exclusive music downloads and to offer better quality discs at a cheaper-than-retail price.It's getting people to listen to the music that's the biggest hurdle for most bands methinks. Once that's achieved, a basic level of success and presence will ensue.
If the argument is that downloading deprives the artist of royalties, then the same argument should make all libraries illegal. If I can go to library to read it, then I don't have to buy it! Of course, if you bite the bullet and want to make libraries illegal, well that's all right with me!
To quote Neil Young "Illegal downloading is the new radio". He said this in reference to his conversations with Steve Jobs who hated MP3's preferring vinyl. He is of course behind the times as Youtube is now the new radio now that ISP's have agreed to prohibit torrents. If you know your history you'll know that music publishing has always been heavily contested arena.Though I no longer illegally download I am very grateful for the time I had with soulseek and limewire, they helped me find stuff that even my obscurantist-works in record store mates had not heard of.Overarching the debate around music royalties is the issue of how to quantify the evidence of supposed lost revenue. I doubt there will ever be agreement on this.
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