Getting legal music doesn’t have to be difficult

Music: what are the choices?

The internet has grew so much recently, so too has misuse of the web. More and more people are downloading music without paying for it. Sometimes some of these people get caught by their native police force, others can avoid it by making use of jurisdiction and technology (such as, VPNs, for example). But it it difficult to get legal music on the internet?

Streaming services

Spotify, for example, allows users to log on to an account and choose their own songs to listen to. Although streaming is a form of downloading, it does not stay on the hard drive of your computer [1]. This means that your computer (at home) tells a website you want a song, it fetches it (maybe sends an advert with it) from the companies server and they allow you to play it through your computer. Companies like Spotify make a lot of money from adverts because they have a high level of hits (the number of people who check out their site).

There are so many other examples, so much so, I do not want to try to name them here because I probably only know an eighth of them — if that. It also varies from country to country, which is good for us — a variety is always good. But it is worth highlighting, at this point, that streaming is easy to do. This is legal because you are not depriving an artist of their earnings. However, this option is a little time consuming (i.e. you have to go to a website, log on, and type what song you want) but maybe it will get easier?

Cheap music

I am not that old but I have noticed that music has become cheaper to purchase — legally. This is a good thing, of course. Years ago I couldn’t have imagined to buy one song off an artist I didn’t particularly like. What do I mean? Well, digital music has allowed a greater access to the various parts of artists. For example, users can buy an individual track rather than buying a whole album. For example, Apple’s iTunes allows users to do it, almost effortlessly.

Digital music has become fragmented. This is a good thing!

The ethical questions

This isn’t a solution, but it could help the world to make one. And I am convinced that the world will make a global decision in my lifetime. Imagine if we all started to use technology a little better, streaming songs rather than illegally downloading them. Would this be fairer to the artist(s)? Would this make the governments in our home nations to make technology more accessible if we start to use it correctly? Would they think about giving power to the people rather than taking it away by enforcing strict laws in every country about what can and can’t be done?

If the song is really good, why not buy it? Turn that great feeling into a great act — pay for more great songs to be released.

You and I can help this. Next time you want to listen to a song, use one of these free services. They are free and fairly easy. This small change can help, especially with ethical issues.

Reference

  1. http://www.spotify.com/uk/about-us/contact/
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The power of the internet

Post 26:

Recently the Scottish Government banned cheap alcohol, claiming that it would help tackle binge drinking. Of course, retailers (such as, Tesco, ADSA etc) will have to come up with more ways to entice potential buyers to purchase alcohol so they can make a profit.

While the Scottish Government have successfully passed such laws, and they are being implemented, retailers are now scrutinising the actual papers – the legal documents. As a result, they (the retailers) have found out that those who live in Scotland can purchase cheap alcohol online (via the internet) whilst not breaking the new law.

how?

Well, the Scottish Government specifically stated that cheap drink offers (such as, buy on get one half price) cannot take place on customers’ shelves; however, the government obviously forgot a strong medium when drafting up this proposal to tackle binge drinking, the internet.

Tesco (as an example, although other retailer exist) decided to place an advert for their Scottish customers’ to state that they can legally buy cheap alcohol online. The works because:

  • the alcohol is being imported from outside Scotland, i.e., England
  • goods (including alcohol) are allowed to be distributed from South to North, i.e., England to the Scottish Highlands.

Does this mean that companies need to reconsider one (crucial) element when they draft their next bit of legislation? That is, to have a Social Scientist involved within the process, to ensure such loopholes can be avoided. After all, one could argue, it has made the (expensive and lengthy) process look like a joke, because it is a law which can be bypassed if you have the right technology and providers. I.e., a computer and the internet.

Post 26, over and out.

Where do we draw the line?

Post 1:

Firstly, thanks for taking the time to read (and visit) my new blog! Feel free to comment, the more the better!

Onto the actual blog, yesterday I was reading an interesting article regarding a new battle of the Apple VS Samsung smartphone debate. What I guess was more interesting is that I just got the Samsung Galaxy S II a few days ago after reading an excellent review on TechRadar. Initially the ‘phone seemed large, but with its clear screen and (extremely) fast processor the extra centimetre seemed to become a thing of the past.

Like many people, I have several friends (and work colleagues) who are all proud owners and users of the Apple iPhone 4. One commented that my mobile was just like the iPhone 4. I guess that is true when you look at the surface of the smartphone and its applications. For example, the Samsung Galaxy S II has a similar interface to Apple’s iPhone 4 camera. However, when using the camera on the Samsung, one can easily pinch the screen to zoom in and out – how are they (Apple and Samsung) the exact same?

When can we actually say they are similar but not the same?

Just browsing random articles online, it seems that all smartphones have similar features. They are all touch screens, allowing the user to tap/touch an icon to access a particular function etc

Are companies (such as Apple) throwing away money for something that is similar but not quite the same?! Will Google fund this case to release a new Operating System for the Samsung Galaxy S II? Would a small button alteration on the camera/photo display allow the judge to throw the whole case out of court?

Where do we draw the line when it comes to technology?

Post 1, over and out … thanks for reading!

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Thought adding this poll was more than appropriate for this post:

Thanks again