Monday, December 31, 2007

The RIAA is seriously insane

The RIAA has had an anti-consumer stance for quite some time, but they've had it towards folks they don't consider to be very good (or at least monetizable) consumer: folks who illegally download and share music.

But now they've decided to go after us, the good guys: the folks who actually still buy music.

How so?

They are suing someone and contending as part of their arguments that it is illegal to rip your own legally purchased CDs onto your computer. (Source: WaPo)

Now, to be clear, they're not going just the act of ripping a copy to give to someone, ripping songs, even, for a mix "tape" to give someone. (All time-honored methods of "stealing" music pre-MP3 days...methods I blithely engaged in.) No, they're going after the act of ripping your CD so you can listen to it on your iPod or even on your computer itself.

So, seriously: are they insane?

Not insane for thinking there could be a legal argument to be made on that, but rather insane to actually think it could ever be good business to make it.

Let me tell you how many CDs I own: somewhere between 1000 and 1500.

Let me tell you how many hours out of the day I listen to my music (my every-single-song-was-legally-acquired music) via my iPod or computer: at least 10 hours a day in my car, at work and at home.

Let me tell you how many of my CDs I would listen to if not for my iPod: probably very VERY few. Even a multi-CD player would be too inconvenient to rely on during the work day. I like being able to turn on Shuffle on my computer or iPod and have music all day without thinking about it or messing with it. Pre-iPod I did not listen to CDs at work ever. I did listen to CDs in my car, but tended to have the same 6 CDs in there for weeks without changing them.

Let me tell you how that would affect my music-buying habits: It would greatly diminish them. I would forget about artists I liked, I would fall into a musical rut, instead of maintaining the really quite broad musical taste I have. And broad taste leads to broad music-buying habits. iTunes has already massively increased my music-buying habits by being so simple and so immediate. By exposing me to more music. And by making it easy for a constant variety of music to accompany my life most of my waking hours.

So, here's what the RIAA is just begging me to do: Never buy another physical CD, ever. Continue to download (legally) away and convert and back that sh*t up religiously, so if my computer ever crashes or Apple goes out of business (heh) I still have all of my thousands of songs available to me.

This latest RIAA antic just reminds me that I need to protect my purchases from their grubby little hands more steadfastly.

Oh, and hello all you artists out there that I love?

I bought Radiohead's latest album direct from them online.

I paid the MORE for it than I would have had to pay for the typical CD or iTunes albu, (partly because I didn't get the whole currency conversion thing, I admit) and if you ALL did what Radiohead did, I would keep buying, directly form you, in a HEARTBEAT.

I love you, artists, not your record companies, and certainly not the RIAA.

Labels: , , , , ,

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

My Chickonomics Podcast Interview

Had a great time last week being interviewed by Lisa Orrell, Chief Chick of

Here's the link to my interview.

We talked for about 20 minutes about all things we started, what we do, what we're planning for 2008, and what changes we've seen in the blogosphere in the 2+ years we've been at it.

If you're still wondering what BlogHer is about, this interview might be a great and comprehensive primer!

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Oh, speaking of the iPhone

Today between meetings I killed about an hour in a Starbucks.

While in the store a song came on that I both didn't know and did like. And damned if I didn't buy it via my iPhone. And when I got home, damned if it didn't synch right up to my computer just as advertised.

I have to say that was not at all a service I thought I would use. I'm typically a stop-in-occasionally, get-my-soy-latte, and move-on-to-my-next-destination kind of gal. But I am also a music-loving, instant-gratification kind of gal. For anyone the least bit like me they barrier is so low as to be non-existent. With literally 3 quick pokes at the touch screen I found out what the song was and bought it, and with the WiFi connection it downloaded pretty quickly. oh, and of course it's $.99, which after spending $3.60 on a soy latter seems kinda negligible.

Now, i could get grumpy with myself for being such a predictable consumer. Or I could praise them for coming up with a good idea.

I will do the latter, so I can continue to consider myself a discerning consumer :)

Labels: ,

This month's Silicon Veggie makes me think of Treos vs. iPhones

Is my recommendation about how to make a Bay Area veg*n feel joyful this holiday season...from a culinary perspective.

In particular it's interesting to consider that my recommendation for the ultimate place to take even a vegan for an intimate romantic dinner is not a vegan restaurant (and the Bay Area has a few nice ones.) it is a vegetarian restaurant that actually has very few vegan items on the printed menu.

Why? Because sometimes how we are made to feel by a company, a product, a service, an offering, is more important than the objective quality or even appropriateness of said offering. I feel welcome and accommodated at my restaurant recommendation. The atmosphere and ambiance appeal to me, and they accommodate my menu requirements without question. And that is enough to make me prefer it over some vegan restaurants that would offer me more menu choices, but don't make me feel as good when I'm there.

I thought of that today when my iPhone had a weird glitchy freezy moment, and I had to turn it off and back on.

When my Treo does this I feel my head begin to explode. When my iPhone did this I simply re-started it and moved on.

Now, it's true that when I was using the Treo heavily i'd have to re-boot it several times a day, so the frequency is much much worse, but the real problem is that even when the Treo is behaving properly, it does not thrill me. it does not entice me. It does not do things wonderfully. It's prosaic and clunky.

There is no payoff that makes the occasional price worth it.

Whereas when the iPhone is working properly...which is most of the is the coolest gadget I've ever owned. It thrills me more than the very first Palm I had, or when I got a Sony Vaio with its beautiful purpley color, or when I first switched to Apple products with the iLamp-style iMac and the iPod.

Anyway, this may be a pretty random post to get my juices flowing here at Worker Bees again, but somehow, in my brain, my column about vegan holiday gifts made me think of my iPhone. Go figure.

Labels: , ,

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?