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IR 11.3

Nancy Baym, “This Song’s for You”

— changes in music/entertainment industries being produced by internet visible in story of Nancy on her back porch on a Sunday morning requesting a song from an obscure Swedish musician busking in the streets of Malmo
— epicenter of Swedish music in Urbana, Illinois website; also west coast US site; tons of Swedish bands with international reputation
— decentralization of music 2.0; Spotify & other such services
— ways internet has freed music fans: we can get anything, we can discover new stuff, etc.
— affordances that empower fans: distance/reach not an issue; new forms of sharing and engagement; enables direct relationships between artists and fans
— major music labels trying to shut all this down; but small new labels and companies beginning to recognize that attention is the ultimate goal
— on the other hand, bands are facing the problem of trying to be everywhere online at once
— The Swedish Model sampler:
— — download all singles as one zip file
— complicating notion of “gift economy” — not just about the gift; also producing revenue for bands
— also complicating sense of fan exploitation in web 2.0
— must rethink terms “fan” and “audience” — what does it mean if some artists aren’t comfortable with those terms?
— what constitutes “fairness” in these new modes of distribution? is “fair” the same thing as it was in 1999?
— high potential for burnout among fans producing content
— entrenched interests still really, really powerful; see three-strikes laws popping up in numerous countries
— “I do believe that we’ll ultimately win, because technology is always smarter than the law, but there are still some dark moments ahead.”


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