The State Of The Music Business

Note: This blog weas originally posted on my web site on June 11, 2009. Since it is a bit of old news, I’ve decided to disable comments.

You have to wonder what the music business is doing sometimes. They are “competing” against the file sharers around the world. CD sales have dropped quite a bit from 10 years ago. Gone are the days of a 10+ million selling mega hit album.

What does the business decides to do? Sell individual songs for maybe $1. So instead of trying to sell an album of 10 or so good songs, they bank on the “single” – which doesn’t exist anymore either. The “single” died as well.

What’s the point these days of creating a video for a song when few music TV stations are barely even showing them? Canada’s music TV stations are too busy showing celebrity shows and TV series with little connection to music [except maybe the opening and closing theme song]. They barely play any videos.

Music DVDs [think concerts] haven’t been doing so badly but with exceptions, stores barely carry them or for long. Even big name bands with half a dozen music DVDs released, you may only find one or two in stock.

Then came the online “shops” for the bands. Recently, a well known band was selling its latest album for $20US [with a bonus DVD]. Act before the release date and they throw in a 2 CD concert for free. Nice deal but there is a hitch. They recently jacked up their “shipping” costs [note the quotations]. That $20 CD now costs close to $40. Why? They are charging close to $20 to ship to Canada or anywhere else. Even after release, the $20 for the CD and DVD is still almost $20 – even without the bonus 2 CD concert.

In comparison, I regularly have ordered from elsewhere in the US or the UK and the shipping prices were no where near as expensive.

Then there are ticket prices. Recently I bought a ticket to a show. $26 after taxes. They tacked on $14 for various service charges.

Or another ticket I bought. $56 after taxes. My final bill was almost $72. Why? Even though I ordered online, they were charging $5 to send my ticket by E-mail! That’s right. No human ever touched my order but they still charge $5 to E-mail me my ticket. [Reminds me of the hoax maybe 7 years or so where the E-mail said Canada Post would charge for every E-mail you send out.]

Seems that the one few areas that has improved has been the concert business. Yet, they find a way for concert goers not to go. A well known online ticket selling company has recently come under fire for selling tickets way above the ticket price even before they went on sale by using a subsidiary web site. That same company was almost getting the heat because of high service charges

Now you wonder why the music business is dying a slow death.


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