Music Media Of The Future Essay, Research Paper
Watch out Compact Disc, make way Mini Disc, MP3 is coming through. MP3, or MPEG Audio Layer 3, is a new audio format which will revamp the entire music industry once embraced. MP3 files are playable on the computer and retain the CD quality near perfectly. As with anything computer-compatible though, MP3 will be given all the blessings and curses that come along with the internet. On the producing end of the music industry, a switch to MP3 is being extremely hesitated. It’s only a matter of time before the masses force the industry into MP3 submission. Consumers of the music industry will highly support a switch over to MP3 for many reasons. An extremely large music collection can be space and financially efficient. A collection of two hundred CDs, averaging at ten songs a disc, can be fit on a $350 dollar hard drive with room to spare. That translates to over one hundred songs per CD. How’s that for a personal, portable radio station? Through the use of CD recorders, these CDs are configurable by the user for pure satisfaction. These songs will be able to be sold over the internet individually as opposed to buying the whole album. An extensive collection of music can be put on the server of a LAN (Local Area Network) of say a large office area. Each person with a PC connected to the LAN can listen music specific to his/her likings as opposed to the elevator music that normally plagues offices to prevent from biasing. The possibilities are endless. MP3 will also make it efficient for the producers of the music industry to produce a wider variety of music that includes more than the relatively small number of mainstream artists. Recording labels will be able to record and distribute the music of fifty artists for what it normally costs to produce one artist. This can be done because the CD manufacturing cost is completely cut out. The music can be put on the internet and we all know data storage space is as cheap as dirt. Many bands write many more songs than get released on CD. MP3 will allow those bands to satisfy their fans much easier. Small bands can also be profitable considering that they have the chance to appeal to a much larger audience through the internet. They will not longer be limited to the people who decide to show up a local club the night they are playing.
While this seems like a win-win situation, but the recording labels don’t seem to be going for the idea of a switch to MP3. The five billion dollar recording industry does not want to give in to the wants of the customer because conversion will cut into profits. Labels will no longer be able to charge outrageous prices for something as intangible as vibrations in the air which should be free anyway. Another concern is piracy. The efficiency of mass reaching that gives the internet strength, leaves room for exploitation. It will be extremely easy for one person to buy a song and then throw it on a disc to pass it out to his/her friends. To make matters worse, there are non-profit illegal organizations on the internet devoted to the free distribution of anything encoded as a computer file with a price tag attached. While the recording labels hide behind this clause to keep from giving in to the people, piracy won’t cut into profits nearly as much as the conversion to MP3 will. We are heading into a society that will be becoming stronger as it utilizes the internet in every aspect of life. People of similar interests are no longer bound by geographical limitations. Sometimes good ideas never prosper because the people with the ideas aren’t unified and their resources aren’t allocated enough for the cause. As every ingredient that makes up our society gets revamped by the internet, the old foundations are set aside. Of course the handful of industrial, profiteering gluttons are going to promote opposition to this revolution they are losing their power. May I add that it is a proven fact that less than one percent of the population directly determines the direction of our society economically, socially, and politically. The conversion to MP3 is a perfect aspect to illustrate this theory. The internet makes it highly affordable for the common man to put his/her two cents towards the sum that makes up our society. That is a true democracy.