Back to a Backward Future
You may have received the e-mail from Amazon,
Alanis Morissette new album,
Under Rug Swept, will hit the stores on February 26 of 2002. Wow! I want to buy one. I wonder if I can find someway of hearing it without pre-ordering from
Amazon, which offers to stream the songs until the CD arrives.
Sure enough, all the songs can be found for free in Mp3, on all the usual suspects. I know you now expect a diatribe about
copyrights, starving artists (well, she does look a little thin to me), or how information wants to be free...
Sorry to disappoint you. I am here to express my admiration of the efficient distribution system of the "underground" world. Or rather
appalled at the slowness of the distribution system of the Record Companies.
Wait, Why is it that the CD goes on sale on a pre-announced date? Does that help the consumer? Doesn't look like it, they probably want to have
it as soon as possible... Does it helps Alanis? No, she was done with it probably months ago, and would probably like to reap the rewards
sooner rather than later. It only helps the record companies themselves, they get to plan, advertise, and receive pre-orders from record stores.
They probably loose some sales, even fairly honest people are probably tempted to download the CD so they can hear it. They are no pirates (no eye-patches, no parrot,
no wooden leg), nor are they terrorist (as crazy Hillary Rosen has claimed). They are fans, they want to hear the music, but once they have it (burnt into a CD),
maybe they won't buy the CD, maybe they didn't even like it..
All this could be solved if Alanis had a real web site where you could buy her songs the moment they are finished, instead of months later. We could even press the idea further and
create a network from Alanis site, record companies and stores. Once an album is finished, by the artist, the stores could download it, print the material pack it and sell it. Perhaps you
could even make custom-made albums
Instead the underground beats the big boys with an efficient distribution system that puts Alanis' CD in my hands long before Amazon
could even try. The record companies can keep suing, and backing off from suing, whoever they want, but can they compete with efficiency and give the customer what they want?
© Copyleft 2006 Alfredo Octavio.
Last update: 1/19/06; 3:37:18 PM.