17 June 2008

Share and Share-Alike

Fascinating study from the University of Herefordshire on the music habits of "young people". It conveniently confirms everything that I and others have been saying for some time. For example:

Respondents seem to attach a hierarchy of value to different formats of music, with streaming on demand the least valuable (though still valued); ownership of digital files somewhere in the middle; and ownership of the original physical CD the most valuable. However, with respondents spending 60% of their total music budget on live music, it may be that “being there” is considered the ultimate music experience of all.

Doesn't that just scream "business model" to you?

This, too, was heartening:

Those who do upload do so for mostly altruistic reasons – by far, the most cited reason was to give in return to others; or to recommend music.

This suggests that respondents recognise the value in the ‘share-ability’ of music and are motivated by a sense of fairness and the principle of reciprocity – something for something. They are operating within a moral code, even though they are acting illegally.

Again, this emphasises that people who are downloading and uploading music are not scofflaws, but operate "within a moral code" - unlike the recording industry, which seems motivated purely by greed and vindictiveness, unwilling to understand the market it purports to serve.

It could do worse than spending some time digesting the results of this survey, which pretty much provide a roadmap for the industry in terms of working with its customers, and making a pile of loot along the way.

No comments: