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Roberto Baldwin

We were stealing music way before the internet and millennials


In an opinion piece on Engadget, Roberto Baldwin makes the argument that millennials are NOT to blame for the current free-for-all philosophy that is killing the industry. The freemium model was a long time coming, and it's time to stop pointing fingers.

This article originally appeared on Engadget

When I was 13, my babysitter showed up with a box of 12 new cassettes. I was amazed that she had been able to afford all this music. I grew up poor and even one new purchase was news; a dozen purchases was cause for celebration. Had she robbed a bank? Found a wad of twenties in a misplaced wallet? Been blessed by the benevolent lottery gods? Seeing the wonder in my eyes she grabbed the TV Guide sitting on the coffee table and opened it up to an advertisement for Columbia House, and there it was in bold letters: "12 tapes for a penny." Thus began my life of crime.

Since the all-you-can-fit-on-your-hard-drive Napster era, it's been generally accepted that people no longer want to pay for content. Why buy a CD or digital download when you can open a Spotify account or fire up a BitTorrent client and enjoy the same music for free? This has led to hand-wringing about how millennials (ugh, that word) have been raised to expect free stuff. They're destroying the music industry and killing movie sales. If you spend more than 30 minutes on the internet, expect to see an article about how they are the absolute worst...

... Read the full article by Roberto Baldwin at engadget.com

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