As with any new, widely accessible invention, the internet was feared for its easy and quick distribution of items and ideas. Many music labels and artists set forth an endeavor to prevent the use of the web as a means to spread their creations illegally. However, the progressive internet and those who inhabit it could not be stopped.
Music companies began to see that stopping the technology was a futile task and switched over to using it to their advantage. Even small music labels and indie bands sought refuge online as their source of distribution. It provided a quick and inexpensive way to spread the word of one’s band or record company.
With internet acting as a proliferation zone for both standard genres and subgenres, personal audio libraries are becoming extremely diverse. Although illegal downloading is still prevalent within society, producers have taken notice of the possible marketing techniques through free song downloads. Many companies are now offering free song samples and limited time specials to customers as an incentive for further purchase.
To better cater to the public’s insatiable love of music, programs like iTunes provides vast stores of individually priced songs and albums from as many years and genres as they can. The power of specialized genres is definitely apparent when one browses through the nearly endless list of available songs, and realizes that it is always growing. ITunes is one of the most successful stores to supply a person’s music library, along with other entertainment mediums, such as movies and television shows, straight to a portable device anywhere in the world.
Connection to the world-wide-web has also made the library itself a variable tool. In years past, there was only the default music player that came equipped in the software of the computer itself, but now many different programs compete for the most popular install online. Some provide the music in stores, connect to a portable device like an iPod, burn disks, shrink file sizes, organize, and find all information for an untitled MP3. These programs have also inspired easier creation of independently made music from home that can be quickly shared with the world with a simple click of the mouse.
The internet has proved itself to be a guaranteed source of endless possibilities for many people and industries. The transformation of music collections from a physical library of records, cassettes and CDs, to an intangible virtual form has the web to thank. Even though there are those who see the online virtual music libraries as a deviation from the norm, there is no doubt that internet connection will continue to change how people use them.
NOTE: After experiencing the day of protest about SOPA/PIP it is clear that the action could better be called a Web Blackout rather than a Strike.
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