The title of this MIDEM talk is “A Totally Positive Look at the State of the Industry.” With such a deliberately compelling title, I had no choice but to listen to Techdirt’s editor, Mike Masnick, give his thoughts on current trends in the music business. Of course Mansick isn’t painting a picture of a music industry in which everything is peachy-keen. Rather, he focuses on two points: consumers are spending more of their household budgets on entertainment (including gaming, movies, and books) and that musicians have greater access to build a career. Neither of these points are groundbreaking, but Mansick makes another point that cannot be overemphasized: in an climate where content is being created and distributed more quickly than ANYONE can listen to it, a musicians number one priority is to be as “awesome” as possible. In other words, the music (both its quality and presentation) need to be even higher than in ages past. Sounds obvious, but think about all the crappy music you’ve heard that someone was trying to pass off as a “single” but it really sounded more like a demo…right.
Check out his ten minute talk at MIDEM and here is the Techdirt entertainment industry research report on which his talk is based.