When Napster and other peer-to-peer systems threatened the then status quo of the music industry, something changed. The largest music corporations managed to support (and join) tech companies who had this idea of renting out music, calling the process streaming. They somehow convinced the masses to avoid piracy, pay the corporations a monthly fee despite NOT owning the music, and even consider this transaction a form of convenient bargain, a win/win. The frontier between marketing and gaslighting have gone wafer thin.
Fast forward a few years, and nobody owns the art they consume, while paying an ever growing rent to a fragmented multitude of companies that spend their time figuring out new ways to commodify films, tv and music while exploiting the shrinking attention span of their customers. All this without a shred of consideration for the idea of a fair pay to the very people who actually produce the art they rent out. I’m not touching the environmental consequences, because it’s still being debated.
What I find most surprising is how the very few that have never stopped buying and collecting music and movies are seen as a relic of a bygone era, if not ridiculed. Corporate marketing clearly have won.
Recommended reading: Spotify Teardown.