The Trichordist has posted a great essay by David Lowery that looks at whether the Internet music revolution has actually been good for musicians.
Lowery takes a look at how music now gets distributed via the Internet and argues that the tech industry has an extremely skewed view of music and musicians:
There is just something fundamentally wrong with how many in the tech industry look at the world. They are deluded somehow. Freaks.
Taking no risk and paying nothing to the content creators is built into the collective psyche of the Tech industry. They do not value content. They only see THEIR services as valuable. They are the Masters of the Universe. They bring all that is good. Content magically appears on their blessed networks.
Lowery’s bottom line can be summarized like this:
Old Boss: pays the artist too little.
New Boss: pays the artist nothing.
The popular take on this is that musicians should give their work away for free, but they’ll make it up with live performances. For many electronic musicians, though, whose focus is crafting compositions in the studio, that approach just doesn’t work.
What do you think? Has the Internet been good for musicians? Or have the shady workings of the music industry been replaced by even shadier workings of the tech industry?