When dying mediums converge

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MF
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When dying mediums converge

Postby MF » Wed Jul 25, 2007 12:43 pm

A columnist for the LA times proposed using the paper to distribute free cds to subscribers (as England's Mail on Sunday did in the UK - sending out 2.9 million copies of Prince's latest cd) and gets his column spiked for his troubles.

It's an interesting idea for two businesses that are struggling with the move to on-line distribution. It's even more interesting that his editors killed his column.

Details and the original column are here.

(Having worked on newspaper special supplements, I really doubt ad revenues could cover the payments to the artist and the additional distribution costs. Although it would be intersting to see if the right combination of artists might drive up subscription numbers and therefore increase potential ad revenue...).

tip of the hat to the Romenesko Report.

miss carol
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Postby miss carol » Wed Jul 25, 2007 12:53 pm

Magazines do that, if only for compilations. Also, the British mag Travel recently included a free mass market version of Nick Hornby's Long Way Down with its publication, which is the first time I've seen that done. Its curious, too, because it's not like Hornby sales are down (I shouldn't think, anyway) and the UK is a book-buying culture, unlike North America. Magazines are offering free stuff more often now.

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Postby Jake » Wed Jul 25, 2007 1:04 pm

Saw that. It's a really good article. The last paragraph is the money shot:

Giving music away doesn’t mean it has lost its value, just that its value is no longer moored to the price of a CD. Like it or not, the CD is dying, as is the culture of newsprint. People want their music — and their news — in new ways. It’s time we embraced change instead of always worrying if some brash new idea — like giving away music — would tarnish our sober minded image. When businesses are faced with radical change, they are usually forced to ask — is it a threat or an opportunity? Guess which choice is the right answer.


We live in interesting times.

MF
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Postby MF » Wed Jul 25, 2007 5:43 pm

Here's yet another interesting follow-up to the original column...

The newspaper model seems to make a lot of sense from the artists' end of things, but I'm not seeing the win for the paper itself.

A few mags used to come with a cd, but Jane magazine was the only non-music title that I can recall doing so...any other lifestyle/food/non-music mags in on the music distribution game? The Believer must have done something like this at one point...The Hornby book deal is a fascinating one, would love to see the numbers behind that decision.

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Postby Jake » Wed Jul 25, 2007 6:05 pm

Yeah, the Believer music issue contains a CD. Lots of magazines have an annual Music Issue. The Oxford American music issue always includes a CD and it is always totally fucking awesome.

Yeti is a zine that always includes a CD.

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Postby Jake » Wed Jul 25, 2007 6:08 pm

PS - Most music magazines that include a CD (Magnet, Paste, etc.) provide that as a source of advertising. Which is why they suck. You can get your song on the Magnet CD for $500. I think to get track #1, it's about $1000. At least it was a few years ago.

MOJO's comps, on the other hand, are not ads. Which is why they're listenable.

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Postby worpswede » Wed Jul 25, 2007 7:16 pm

Jake wrote:MOJO's comps, on the other hand, are not ads. Which is why they're listenable.

That explains it. The MOJO comps seemed to be the only one of its kind that I could tolerate. They're nicely compiled.

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Postby Lep » Thu Jul 26, 2007 7:58 am

Italian and Spanish newspapers have been giving away or selling cheap books and DVDs, CDs for a while.

miss carol
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Postby miss carol » Thu Jul 26, 2007 8:30 am

Jake wrote:PS - Most music magazines that include a CD (Magnet, Paste, etc.) provide that as a source of advertising. Which is why they suck. You can get your song on the Magnet CD for $500. I think to get track #1, it's about $1000. At least it was a few years ago.

MOJO's comps, on the other hand, are not ads. Which is why they're listenable.


Really? That's nuts. I admit, I'm losing touch (if I ever was in touch) with what labels are truly independent and not, but it seems like a lot of the bands on the Magnet CD are quite small. Then again, Brian Eno made an appearance last year, I think. Five hundred bucks seems like a lot to me. Shit the promo budget for one our books isn't that much! (But then I'm not with one of the Big Three.)

On a side note, I'm considering cancelling my Magnet subscription and buying Mojo instead; I'm starting not to care about the latest twenty-something bands. I also read this great review of a Simon Reynolds book (forget the title, but a comp of his columns) where he describes the indie-music culture as faux naif. Perfect.

MF, if I find something about the Horny thing, I'll post it. I'm curious too. It would work in Canada, but I'm not sure about the US; depends on the book.

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Postby stickman45 » Thu Jul 26, 2007 2:09 pm

miss carol wrote:




MF, if I find something about the Horny thing, I'll post it. I'm curious too.


GREATEST TYPO EVER.


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