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Fairness and P2P music exchange

The issue of fairness in P2P music exchange is complicated. On one hand, it is universally accepted that the traditional business model of music labels is not compatible with the Internet. It is also universally suspected that it does not properly retribute the artists, and that it leads to over-priced products.

On the other hand, free-rolling file sharing completely bypasses both middleman and artist to let listeners find their music online, free of charge. The businessmen are fuming. But it is useful to remember that recorded music was originally intended as *promotional* material for the actual live performances, before the record made centerstage and the big-business marketing machine started manufacturing hits for profit.

Trojan-style music marketing on P2P

I was practicing my daily piracy routine, downloading the new Strokes album. On aMule, I found a .rar file called The Strokes - First Impressions of Earth (complete + bonus) with many sources and a decent-looking size. "Great!" I told myself and happily selected it. When I extracted the package a few hours later, the Strokes album was there alongside with the full album of a band I'd never heard about, The Honkers - Roll Up Your Sleeves And Help Us Rock Up This Honker World, which turned out to be a punk band from Brazil.

Egypt, 2006 Africa Cup winner

National causes are a mysterious force. This year, the African soccer tournament rallied Egyptians from all walks and both genders. And we won, just a few minutes ago, after penalty shots that were undoubtedly agonizing for the players and the public. The explosion of emotions in the streets is a testimony to the tension/relief cycle I see in most human processes.

I've been indifferent towards those mob reactions since I became aware of them. I'm starting to change my mind, however. Although I'd like to remain detached, the togetherness created by these events is a immensely powerful force, much more volatile than rationality, and that can be put to good use (or bad) if understood. And it has been used throughout history, by leaders and organizations, whether consciously or not. That's from the observer point of view.

From the participant point of view,

You mean there's something else?

- I'd like you to listen to something. Do you mind music that can sometimes be off-scale, off-tempo and technically shaky?
- Sure, I can get into rock.

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