Monday, 30 November 2015

Recommended book: How Music Got Free

Took me a while in the end to get round to reading this, and here is my summary.

Witt's book provides an in-depth account of the origins of file-sharing (it goes back longer than you might expect) with vivid descriptions of the principals.

I learned a lot, including that the first pirated song was 'Until it Sleeps', by Metallica. I like details like that.

Defining the year 2000 as the 'banner year' in the timeline of digital music piracy (and I agree), the second half of the book picks up in more familiar territory, and it is here where the real arguments are made.

For instance, Witt ponders: "If something was available for free, and could be freely and infinitely reproduced for free, with no degradation in quality, why would anyone pay to own it for a second time, when they already had it, for free?" (p. 125).

He also critiques streaming, with up to date examples.

It's a non-academic book, so an easy one to swallow.


Witt, S. (2015). How Music Got Free. London, England: The Bodley Head.

1 comment:

  1. The music business has changed a lot over the last 15 years its idfficult to predict where its heading now.