Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Feargal Sharkey pins his hopes on all-you-can-eat

UK Music - the group which represents the bits of people working in music who choose to be represented by it, and nobody else - has issued a report which... well, you know what it will show. People download music and don't pay for it.

It turns out Sharkey's people are now throwing their weight behind all-you-can-eat pricing - presumably because they imagine that the major labels can slice a subsidy off the internet service providers without any really noticing.

The survey finds that a majority of respondents use file-sharing:

Feargal Sharkey, former lead singer of the Undertones and now chief executive of UK Music, is phlegmatic about young people's behaviour.

"Have they got the message that there is a thing called copyright and there is a philosophy of copyright? Yup. They get it. They just don't care," he says.

"What they're quite clearly trying to explain to us at the minute is that we can get it for free and we're not going to get caught."

Well, not quite, Feargal. What you and the RIAA still are having trouble grasping (once again) is that people respect there's copyright in music; it's just that they perceive the market value of individual song files to be zero, or nearly zero. Until you come to terms with that, you're not going to be able to develop a strategy for making money in the new world. (All you can eat, by the way, is not a strategy.)