Is downloading music really so bad? Yes it does drive record sales down and cause concert prices to rise. On top of that, downloaded movies cause film companies to lose millions. When people are downloading music and movies off the internet for free, or for a very low price, the artist has to make up that revenue in some other fashion. So what is happening is, concert ticket prices are going through the roof. Where you used to be able to go to a concert for $20, now it can cost you $100 plus. Many fans are screaming that this is outrageous, but if they added up all the savings from the music they are downloading, they are actually making a profit. Even if they bought a t-shirt at the show they would still come out ahead. Now while this is a prime concern for record companies and film producers, it can have some advantages. Let’s try to look at this in a more positive way. While in the past if you wanted to check out a new band, you had to go to your local record store; walk through the mall; buy your CD or record then drive all the way home. This took up a lot of time, gas, and energy. Now if it was a music group that you really like; then that’s no problem.
But if it was someone you just heard about, you may not be so quick to make that trip to buy their music. Even as time went on, and online sales increased people were still cautious about spending money on an entire CD, just to hear a new band. Enter the world of downloading. First we’re going to look at the paid services. Itunes and Spotify are two of the top sites to get all your favorite music. While these do cost money, it is relatively cheap to get a song or two and get a feel for the band. Itunes sells songs for $1 a piece which is a real bargain considering you never have to leave your living room. It allows fans of the music to make an easy choice on whether or not to investigate a new sound. This creates more new music sales then traditional CD or record buying would. For the low price people are willing to take a chance on a new group.
This also gives the new music group more exposure that they normally would not have gotten. In the past, unless there was a big push from the record company, small bands at a show would have to sell their CDs in person which led to a trickling of sales. Online downloading gives smaller bands a bigger exposure, and allows music fans to share their opinion on new songs with the World At Large. Now let’s talk about the ugly world of illegal downloading. File sharing has been around for quite a while and has done some damage to the record and movie business. People can go to file sharing sites and get all the music that they want. While the record companies don’t make anything off of this, once again, the band’s get a lot more exposure than they normally would have gotten. Especially if the music is free, there is no risk to the consumer to investigate a new music group. Not many people look at this as stealing, but it is. But on the other hand, many new famous bands would not be where they are today without the widespread trends of music sharing online.