Piracy was considered the music industry’s big problem. Now, piracy is no longer the hot topic, because licensed services have managed to stop the financial leakage and the industry looks like it has stabilized. These services, and particularly streaming services, have done a great job at understanding the reality of the networked age, in which information travels freely, and have built something that acknowledges that and adds value that certain segments of music consumers are happy to pay for.
The general industry never acknowledged the reality underlying piracy, instead seeing it as an obstacle to be overcome, and after dealing with the worst of piracy it has set its sights on something new: the streaming services. Yes, streaming royalties are low, because the real price of accessing content in the age of networks is zero. These services have figured out clever ways to inflate this price and now they’re under pressure. In our networked age, access to content was never the problem, and many have been suckered into thinking that if this problem can be solved, all financial woes will be behind us. Dead wrong.