Thursday, October 04, 2007

Free Music?

Another night of Polo occurred Tuesday. It felt like I'd missed a month (might have) and everyone seemed excited to be back playin'. We played with a different, smaller ball which changed the dynamic quite a bit. It's a field hockey ball filled with water so it rolls differently than the other rubber ball we were using. It doesn't ricochet near as much either which lead to a much harder time getting it out of corners and off the wall. Even the material was different enough to make an impact to me. I needed to be much more careful with my angle. If I hit it on the top too much my mallet would just drive it into the court and I'd roll right by it.

I was able to shoot some better footage of the action this week. I posted them up on my flickr page: Nashville Bike Polo Oct 2nd

I fixed my lcd screen on my digital camera again after squishing it for the second time. My camera has a key weakness in that there isn't a protective shield over the screen. The first time I broke it I was hiking with it in my jacket pocket and was bouldering. This second time I had it with me while mountain biking and presumably something just happened to press right on the screen with enough force to crack it. The fix is really quite simple. The only hard part is watching ebay for a good deal on a broken camera with a good LCD screen. The first time I got one I had to pay $40 which was a great deal at the time. I swapped out the screen and re-sold the broken camera with my broken screen for $20. Gotta love ebay, people looking for everything! This time I was able to score a camera with a broken lens motor for $6!! I swapped the screens in about 5 minutes and am all fixed up again. I guess the value of broken 3.2 megapixel Sony cameras is falling.

Through his blog, Troy brought to my attention the new Radiohead album that will be available Oct 10th through their site. They are looking to stir the pot a little with a few weird quirks to the release. Oct. 10th they are releasing the songs for download exclusively through their website. You are able to preorder a large collectors edition including 2 CDs, 2 LPs and some artwork for 40 Pounds ($80), which will be released in December. I gathered that the actual CD will hit the stores in Dec as well. The big catch to the entire deal is they are asking people to name their own price on the digital download that is being released Oct 10th. You can even name your price as $0.00 if you feel that is fair. It all seems a big experiment. What will the average person decide to pay to enjoy the songs 3 months before their official release? Radiohead is in a very unique situation in that they are a superband (popularity/success wise, not subjectively) and are currently not signed with any label. A lot of blogs are calling this move a big middle finger to the large labels and corporate music. As it can appear that way I can't help but remind people that it was these very establishments that helped Radiohead become the household name they are. It's easy to say all music should be free, but in the long term what will this mean for artists? Should all paintings be free as well? Photography? Art is so hard to qualify, and also put a monetary value on, but I still feel there needs to be a price. I've been thinking of posting an entire blog entry on my thoughts about music, downloads, burning/cloning etc. This might have to wait for a lazy sunday afternoon. I am always curious to discuss the matter with my friends as long as they are willing to have constructive discussion.

So back to the Radiohead discussion. I was all ready to plunk down at least $10 for the downloaded songs. Then I started wondering what format would they be. Would they include some manner of DRM or copy protection? This info is hard to find and I think purposefully not divulged by Radiohead. As I said earlier, I'm set on the idea that music is worth something. Especially from a band which I revere as much as Radiohead. They are on my very short list of bands I don't even give a second thought to purchasing their music. If the songs are presented in a subpar .mp3 format (below 192 bitrate) I have to admit I feel much less willing to open the wallet as much. I acknowledge though that I am a bit of an audio snob due to my profession and that the majority of the world doesn't have the same feelings. My plan is to wait and see what Radiohead actually releases and then maybe later on the 10th or the 11th I'll make my purchase. It is nice to see someone going about things from a different perspective though and I applaud them. It will be very interesting to hear about the outcome.


cornfed said...

That's a killer shot, my bike looks fast, like a marsupial.

I read that the files will be mp3 and playable on any mp3 capable machine. But no direct mention of DRM.


Chewieez said...

Nice to know about the mp3. I really hope they are higher bit rate than 128. Really though who am I kidding, I'm be getting them anyways, no matter what they are.

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