p2pnet news view DRM | Music:- As the SpiralFrog spirals down, it, “illustrates exactly what’s wrong with the current system, and why the ‘pirates’ really can’t help but win this one,” figures Henry Emrich in a p2pnet Reader’s Write.
The tacky Frog has croaked its last croak its assets, such as they are, going to creditors, p2pnet was happy to report yesterday.
The Advertisement Upheld Circumvoluted Amphibian, sadly associated with Universal Music, was doomed to failure from day one.
Henry continues »»»
1. Anybody who thinks that ‘downloads = lost sales’ (the standard industry talking-point) should really consider whether that’s true, because if it IS true, then Spiralfrog represented nothing less than the labels cutting their own throats.
I mean, to use their own `logic’ against them, ‘why would anybody pay when they can get it for free?’
If they were correct with this objection, you’d expect to see at least a REALLY serious drop in album sales, when a ‘free’ version was offered on Spiralfrog. Did it happen? I’m pretty sure it didn’t, because they’re still issuing gold records and indulging in all the usual MAFIAA-sanctioned self-congratulation as per usual.
So they’ve basically conceded the first point usually raised by p2p-advocates (namely, that downloads and ‘available for free’ do not translate to `lost sales’, so much as ‘really easy advertising.’
2. Spiralfrog also demonstrates why people don’t like DRM-’protected’ (hobbled) formats: even the most non-techie understands that digital and analog are different, and that one of the big advantages to digital is easy duplication.
DRM represents an inherently faulty attempt to make digital media ‘behave’ like analog media (by, for example, forcibly binding the information to a particular plastic disc or suchlike, by introducing an extra layer of `licensing’ bullshit.)
People don’t like that, and the media companies know this. Actually, the corporatocracy is trapped by its own methods: to remain profitable, they have to aggressively hype the ‘next big thing’ (which is portable media players). But for those players to actually be worth buying, they can’t afford to attempt ‘vendor lock-in’ too often, or they risk pissing off formerly-docile consumers, and essentially turning people onto the p2p and ‘piracy’ thing. I mean, come on â the minute they offer the first ‘freebie’, they’ve conceeded the whole thing. Thus, nobody in their right mind would continue to have any serious qualms about getting a ‘free version’ that’s NOT broken and hobbled with DRM, even if they have to use REAL p2p networks to do so.
3. The last thing that’s really kinda funny about Spiralfrog and stuff like this is how â yet again â the RIAA’s backers feel the need to cobble together a fake version of what’s (supposedly) killing them:
They did this with Napster and mp3.com.
Spiralfrog may not have co-opted an existing brand, but the fact that the MAFIAA even allowed something like it is revealing in itself:
They’ve always known that their anti-p2p propaganda, relentless whoring for longer copyright terms, and other assorted bullshit makes no sense. Spiralfrog (poor attempt that it is) demonstrates that they also understand the ‘try before you buy’ mentality, and that trying vainly to ‘monetize’ each and every use to which one’s ‘content’ is put can only end badly.
In short, they understand full well that they’ve lost, and they never actually had a leg to stand on in the first place.
It’s also pretty revealing that iMesh still exists, Rhapsody allows ‘streaming for free’ (even in as limited a fashion as it does) etc.
THIS is why I keep saying we need to be able to think on a ‘bigger’ scale than the other side.
Sorry for the long post, but hey stuff to think about.
No worries, Henry. And no need to stay tuned.
p2pnet – Spiral Frog croaks its last croak, March, 2009
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