Rest High Above the Clouds, No Restrictions

The New York Times had an article (free registration required) this weekend about satellite radio coming under fire from the music industry. Both XM and Sirius are offering players that let you record off their channels, not unlike a DVR and television. Though the companies do not allow the saved music to be transferred to a computer, some industry executives are apparently complaining.

I wonder when the RIAA and the music industry are going to learn. Most agree they dropped the ball by badly handling the emergence of the MP3 years ago. Now they are going to attack people that are paying for music via satellite? Not long ago people recorded radio with cassette tapes. And people lent tapes out or made copies for friends. Well, with this satellite model, though the quality of the recording has become better, you can't even share with friends.

The television industry learned from the music biz's failures of yester-year. Now people are recording shows on DVRs, downloading episodes on iTunes, or watching them on demand. Despite the success of MP3 players and commercial download sites, it seems the music industry hasn't learned anything.

How should the RIAA and music industry be reacting?

Add New Comment


  • Moshe Yudkowsky

    I've blogged about this.

    Portable MP3 players have done to MP3s what transistor radios did to traditional radio years ago: they make it possible to listen to music any time, any place. The technology is revolutionary — it breaks the constraints of time and space — and poses a threat to traditional radio. Since MP3s transfer over the Internet, and since wireless connectivity to the Internet is becoming ubiquitous, in a few short years we can expect to see portable MP3 players that continuously update their playlists via "podcasting." Once that happens, who will need radio at all? Wireless MP3 players will have thousands of channels and tens of thousands of songs on hand at all times, which is far better than traditional radio.

    XM and Sirius invented a device [Wall Street Journal, registered users] that uses satellite radio to update a handheld player. The player stores songs that it receives from the satellite station. By building this device and deploying it, XM and Sirius have shown a way to compete against the coming wireless MP3 player.

    It's time for the music industry to wake up, smell the coffee, and join the rescue effort.

  • Dennis Nelson

    The music industry got exactly what they deserve----and RIAA---is getting what is due them--for being in bed with the music industry!!!!

  • mahendrakumardash

    Satellite radios will remain side by side.It will not vanish.It will be more refined and more entertaining days to come.Of course .over the years,TV came,music system will all advanced features came and more work is done in that area.But satellite radios reach more people who are less welloff and more in number through out the world.They are also making interesting work and people enjoy. (say, you enjoy listening to satellite radio in your car or just stay happy with your music static CD)I believe you will tell that you like to switch on radio at times/may be very often.

  • Priya

    The RIAA has never responded openly to technology changes. They are the most backwards industry group out there.