Digital Music Battle Royal: Reax & Roundup

If you’re a musician or know one personally, then the past ten days or so have likely affected your blood pressure. What started as a simple All Songs Considered blog post (that annoyed me) snowballed into an all-out blitzkrieg throughout the net, with guns blazing (bombs dropping?) from all sides: for, against, attempting to find compromise, tearing everyone down, etc. I even received some flak for my quickly-written rant.

Because no one wants to read yet another article on this topic, suffice it to say that I stand by my two big points from last weekend:
1. NPR’s Emily White illegally acquired most of her library, despite her stating otherwise via some creative rationality.
2. My beef was not with Emily White specifically. What she wrote bothered me, but, as I stated last week, I know that she’s one of millions. Instead, I was “shocked and chagrined” by NPR Music’s de facto endorsement of her position by allowing its publication via All Songs Considered. After all, NPR Music is a major media organization that relies heavily on listener support. An interesting juxtaposition if you ask me…

Anyway, I thought it’d be worthwhile to curate a number of last week’s posts related to this issue for anyone wanting to return to the battlefield. While I have so much to say on this topic, I need a mental vacation from it. (And I’m also scrambling to pack…) I’m not necessarily endorsing the POV of all of the below articles. I full agree with some, fully disagree with others, and have mixed feelings about most.

In somewhat chronological order:

“I Never Owned Any Music To Begin With” — NPR Music’s All Songs Considered, by Emily White

“Euphemistically Stealing” — MT-Headed Blog, by yours truly

“Letter to Emily White at NPR All Songs Considered” — The Trichordist, by David Lowery

“In Defense Of Emily White (The NPR Intern)” — Hypebot.com, by Emily White

“File sharing? It’s nothing personal. Seriously.” — McCarthyisms for Your Work Week, by David McCarthy
(David’s elusive online beyond the blog, but he’s a friend, former classmate, and someone with whom I always enjoy engaging on a variety of topics.)

“A Personal Aspiration Towards Ethical Listening” — Lubricity, by Alex W. Rodriguez

“White Vs. Lowery (Or I Don’t Have Time For This)” — The Clatter of Keys, by Erin McKeown (She’s great in concert, by the way…)
(Honorable Mention: Best Title contender)

“Music Followup” and “A Response to This Guy’s Response to This Other Thing on the Internet”My Quiet Life, by Chris Wage

“Hey Dude From Cracker, I’m Sorry, I Stole Music Like These Damned Kids When I Was A Kid” — Huffington Post, by Travis Morrison
(Honorable Mention: Best Title contender)

“I buy more music than Emily White, and you should too” — CityPages, by Erik Thompson

“A Perpetual Debate: Owning Music In The Digital Age” — All Songs Considered, by Robin Hilton

“Emily White, David Lowery And The Future of Music Consumption”Forbes.com, by Leor Galil

“Can we ease up on Emily White a little bit?” — by David MacDonald
(Another former classmate. I knew he’d chime in on this – and from this perspective – and that’s part of the reason I held off from posting this until now.)

 

PS: For giggles, I decided to listen to a little Cracker, for which I paid many years ago, when clicking “Publish.” That, coupled with all my previous contributions to NPR, should help to bring balance to The Force.

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