For music services such as Spotify and Rhapsody, perhaps the biggest threat is coming from artists themselves, and a practice some are calling "windowing." Are staggered releases a staggeringly bad idea?
The music industry may soon be acting even more like the film business and delaying streaming songs to avoid cannibalizing sales."Windowing," says Jon Irwin, CEO of subscription-based music streaming service Rhapsody, "[is] fundamentally the wrong thing to do."
Will the former KCRW "Morning Becomes Eclectic" tastemaker and "Star Maker of the Semipopular" find the next Coldplay, Interpol, or Norah Jones -- or just offer sweet relief from bland Internet music video?
Coldplay is the king of downloads. According to Neilsen, the band has become the first to sell over one million digital albums in the U.S., and over two million worldwide. It may be surprising that this hasn't happened before, but it basically confirms something we all knew anyway--digital downloads are the future for music.
If the music industry can't figure out how to make a profit, they might as well just give their music away for free. The major labels have done little to innovate the industry. One innovation, however, that just might work (and one which I benefitted from) is free concerts. BIG free concerts.