Digital Music, Post Scarcity, and Post Property/Currency

One of many graves… The deceased: physical media. sorely missed? Nah.

An intern recently disclosed to everyone and God’s children (at least the children who tune into NPR) that she has never bought a single album all her life.

You may read about it here and view some of the backlash here.

In regards to music, her acquisition limits itself to duplicated CD’s gifted by friends, or the temporal pleasure of streaming her aural entertainment via the likes of spottify and grooveshark. As you can imagine, such information was guaranteed comment-box flame bait. Regardless of whether she’s right or wrong, or if her refusal to buy music takes a piss on her credentials as a music fan (which it doesn’t by the way, more on this later); She should know better than to nip her career in the bud as she did. I suppose an intern for NPR may or may not be in the best position to rock the foundation of tradition, especially without first securing a permanent position. Then again, her controversial stance may be just the outrageous voice that radio needs these days. I for one wish her the best.

Often, the commentator’s section of many internet articles are the anus of the internet. So I did most of the grueling work for you. This has led to dysentery . See how much I care about you readers?

The remarks range from hilariously underhanded….

“I have a great system for getting free parking. I just steal quarters and dimes out of the ashtrays of nearby parked cars, and use them to pay the meter.

And when my friends and I go out to a bar, I don’t pay for drinks! I just borrow a few bucks out of the wallets and purses of people sitting near me. It’s only a few bucks, and they probably never even notice. No harm, no foul, right?

I don’t even pay for gas, I just siphon it out of my neighbors’ cars. It doesn’t taste very good, but at least it’s more convenient than having to pay!

And I know a great cafe where you don’t even have to pay for coffee, as long as you bring your own mug. They leave the carafes sitting out, just fill ‘er up! And then I use the free WiFi to torrent my favorite indie bands.”

(This does for NPR what Stephen Colbert does to America every time he airs on Comedy Central. Notice how I said “for” not “to” in regards to the former. This type of shit can only help)

….to obnoxiously audiophile…

“Just for the record (no pun intended), Ms White has stolen most of her library. Although, she hasn’t stolen a complete set! You see, her little MP3 files are like books. She stole a bunch of books with every other word missing from the text! MP3 files are not the intended final presentation of most musicians. Or they would have recorded their material somewhere around the 11kHz domain. Let her have them. They are empty half-songs. Void of the rich and detailed representation of months, and sometimes years, of writing and recording that turn into beautiful soundscapes with details and nuances she will never in her life experience. The hell with her kind… They win! They win! I’ll take my vinyl and AIFF files please…”

….to nostalgic….

“One of the downsides of paying for music is that you can’t buy all of it, and therefore you listen to less. But I feel like it is a more concentrated listening experience, hearing albums from start to finish, over and over again, the way my parents listened to albums.”

I can’t help but feel slightly annoyed by one particular comment (even more so than the audiophile remark) I can’t find it for quotation purposes but they basically compared the theft of music to waltzing out of a grocery store with bags of food without paying. To which i responded:

The world is changing. In the future my most sincerest hunch is that health care and yes, “groceries” will be free.

We are approaching the point of post scarcity. The value of something isn’t going to be measured in dollars anymore, all currency will be replaced by “appreciation”. The movie, music and print media industry IS going kaput. That much is not speculation. enthusiast shall take their place. The word professional will become faux pas; individuals defined as such will be replaced by an army of hobbyists. Consumers will be consuming without spending a dime in response to this abundance.

To comment on the present situation in regards to musical livelihood, I must bring up an artist who is dear to me; pretty lights.
He plays shows, sells merch and manages to receive acclaim and relevance that alludes people who sell their music. That’s right, he has all his music available to download for free next to a donation button. brilliant. I’m broke traveling folk but I still ended up giving the guy 50 dollars. I work out to his music, he keeps me healthy and rocks my soul so I think he deserves it.
I consider Pretty lights to be an musician who is getting with the program. Its a shame others don’t know how to do it right.

There you have it, If anything at least I made it abundantly clear that I’m just the type of narcissistic creep who, so infatuated with his own words, would copy and paste my comment (and residual opinion) from a foreign website to share with you. Hopefully, his will be the first of many examples of editorial cannibalism.


~ by miliefisathand on June 26, 2012.

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