Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Pomo Promo Giveway Bonanza! Get one get more free! [house music is controllable desire you can have for free]
I just received an email from Bleep detailing a special promo giveway tie in with Sonar this year.
You can get info on it – not to mention some mpfreez - by simply moving the tip of your forefinger, until you hear the little click.
Pragmatically, this promo makes sense. In fact, it's very savvy. It's also not the first such example of something similar: you get the impression that this is being trialled by labels as a quasi experiment. I have a zip file on my desktop full of similiar files from ghostly,
......once you start giving away tracks, is there not the concession here that music is just data, that data is just promo, and that promo is just a marketing gadget, a way of getting bums on seats and feets on floors at overpriced gigs, where you can then be sold merchandise?
To me this email concedes that music as data is of no intrinsic worth.
It then seems churlish, even hypocritical, to turn around and charge for something 'as if' if were a finite object in space, not an infinitely copy-able simulacra.
Sites then have the temerity to charge MORE for flac or wav.
No doubt sites exist in space; every google search is coal fired. No doubt.
No doubt these kinds of promos happen because concerned and savvy record companies want to promote their artists *given* that it's almost impossible to turn a dime from recording these days.
No doubt it also makes complete sense, given the media landscape we're now in (not Kansas anymore, in case you hadn't noticed, Toto).
But: with the best intentions in the world, isn't the cumulative effect of this just the dissemination of bad copies, the further devaluation of music as music, the further transformation of inalienable human creativity into transferable data freebies (fit for desktop consumption and do-while private delectation while iUsers are on their way to work, or at their desks working), and the eventual emptying out of the time-consuming, life-sacrificing processes involved in composing, recording, mixing and mastering a recording?
I read this and I feel that everything turning po mo promo!
When everything is data, will we be the happy, profitable masters of our own futures, or the bored, jaded, accelerated husks of the music LOVERS we once were, people to lazy to even listen to the zip files full of free promos that clutter our desktops? I'm not sure.
But I'm pretty sure there's something wrong with this, that it's indicative of our committed pursuit of some pretty dodgy political decisions; and I'm pretty sure it needn't be the future.