Music industry must evolve or go bankrupt

Jamie DeLoma

If the goal of the music industry was to get the country’s attention, it got it by suing a 12-year-old NY girl. Prosecuting music pirates will likely stop a considerable amount of music downloads for awhile. Music piracy has cost the record companies more than $700 million a year in lost sales since 1999.

However, no amount of prosecutions will totally end music piracy. The music industry, while prosecuting music downloaders must also realize what they are doing wrong. There are reasons why people download music from the Internet rather than purchase CDs. For one thing, the price is just outrageous. Eighteen dollars for a CD is simply unaffordable for most college students.

Also, why purchase an entire CD if all you want is one or two songs from the 16 or so tracks? It seems odd to me that DVDs cost as much, if not less, than some CDs and yet are loaded with more information and more special features than the CDs are.

The music industry must come out with their own version of Napster where a small, and I do mean small, price of a few cents is charged for the immediate high quality download of a particular song.

By charging a small fee for a specific song, perhaps even a special edition version, music listeners will flock to purchase that song and drive the sponsor-based free sites like Kazaa to the background.

In addition, more money should go directly to the artists who are performing the songs. Many music listeners are aware that very little proceeds from the sales of CDs go directly to the artist which gives little incentive to purchase the CD.

The growing and ever-changing technology of the Internet is affecting everything, not just music downloading. The music industry must adapt to the changes or go out of business. It is good to see that a major music label has already cut CD prices by 30% – while not what

I would like to pay for a CD, definitely more reasonable than before.

Almost every sector of our society has been dramatically affected somehow through the ever-changing technology, and most sectors have changed and survived.