Music Biz Tipping From Tangible to Digi

Tim Arango reports in the New York Times that Digital Sales Surpass CDs at Atlantic. This should come as no surprise to fifteen-year-olds. In fact, it should come as a surprise to no one of any age. But it’s still another sign that the media is undergoing one of the profoundest transformations in the history of human communications.

Does that mean that dollars have also tipped from the hard copy side to the virtual? Not according to John Rose, a former music business executive quoted by Arango. “It’s not at all clear that digital economics can make up for the drop in physical,” Rose observed.

“With the milestone comes a sobering reality already familiar to newspapers and television producers,” writes Arango. “While digital delivery is becoming a bigger slice of the pie, the overall pie is shrinking fast.”

This too is no surprise to any business person caught in that terminator line where the fading light of the old media meets the rising sun of the new.

Where is the money disappearing to? Once you recite the motto of the new generation – “Information wants to be free” – it shouldn’t be too hard to figure out.

RC

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