Many who take a good amount of cash upfront will never know the benefits of long-range thinking.”
The Internet has leveled the playing field, artists can now choose to take the DIY road, and the main advantage Record Labels now have is reduced to their network and their cash. Both are valuable, how to take advantage of them without selling your soul? Think long-range.
An artist or band has these songs, they're awesome, and they got a label interested, they sit down at the negotiating table and the story repeats itself, the label wants master ownership and a participation on all income streams, even non-music related until costs are recouped (a.k.a. 360 deal). Is there a way to break this vicious cycle?
The mp3 encoder/decoder was reverse-engineered and released as a freeware. Two young entrepreneurs saw a chance to help move music forward to a digital market, but life had other plans.
Enjoy this post, the last of a series in which we explored the history of digital music.
1999, just two years after the incident that freed mp3 encryption as freeware, Shawn Fanning, 19, was frustrated with the difficulties of browsing for music on the Internet, which consisted in using a regular search engine to look for whatever song you were looking for.
Shawn then got an idea to build a software based on the peer-to-peer protocol, which would consolidate the browsing and downloading of the users' music files collections using a centralized server.
Compact discs contain digital files that could be read ("played") as music, the sound was already a collection of ones and zeroes, the issue was the size. A team of German researchers, the Internet, a hacker, and a couple of entrepreneurs later, and music underwent a hell of a ride that took it to where we are today.
Converting music in a digital format was a success, compact discs sales were booming, and the market adoption was pretty much ubiquitous. Now the 1980s were here, and with them the Internet came along and served as the catalyst that prompted change this time.