Thursday, April 26, 2001

AND MORE NAPSTER...: "Look, global sales of records have fallen" cries Music Week, "this proves how disatorous Napster has been..." Bollocks, if it proves anything its how shite music is now. The UK saw sales rise, helped mainly by another round of Beatles hawking, while although there was a huge decline in US singles sales, this could be because there was nothing of interest to the target singles market. Thats if there is a target singles market anymore. When I was a kid, I bought singles because I could just about stretch my pocket money to fit them. Albums were a rare treat, made possible by Christmas cash or allowing great aunties to kiss me without flinching or wiping. Kids born on the right sides of the tracks in the US these days have a greater weekly disposable income than many Independent sovereign states, and are just as able to go out and buy an album as a single. Providing there's something they want. They could just as easily buy a peregrine falcon or a discarded cattle-cull calf.
Anyway, US music sales were down just 1.5% year on year. In '98 and '99, they rose nine and four percent respectively. If a rising stock market trundled slightly backwards after ten years of continuous growth, it would be explained away as a "correction" rather than an indication of the end of the world, and so it would be here, were it not a handy stick to pass to the judge to beat Napster with. Set in the wider context of an American economy generally regarded as entering the "fucked" stage of the economic cycle, a small dip in sales should be praised as God smiling down on the industry. Not, of course, that it will.
Can copyright theft be constitutional? - FT article on Digital Millennium Copyright Act coming to court
FT reports ringtones seen as "new Napster" - yeah, because why would people buy a CD when they can have five seconds of something resembling the tune clanged out in tinny tones everytime someone rings for a chat?

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