Normally, everything I write about here is at least indirectly connected to science in some way. However, today I am drifting into the world of music. The New York Times had an article a few days ago about Trent Reznor (Trent Reznor’s Frustration and Fury – Take It. It’s Free). Trent, the brains behind the band Nine Inch Nails (full disclosure – I am a fan of his music), has been railing against the constraints of the music industry for year.
And now he is going even further and in essence putting his music into the public domain as much as possible (see his web site NIN.com for more detail). For example
“Mr. Reznor even posts online all the raw digital tracks from Nine Inch Nails albums for anyone to remix. “I’m done with them,” he said. “Why not?”
And he is doing this even though the $$$ for producing his music does not come from the government. He does it in part because he wants his ideas and music to spread and he wants to contribute to musical development. There are obvious parallels between what he (and others) are doing in music and those who develop Open Source software and those who release their data and publications to be as free as possible. I know I am not the first to discuss this, but just thought I would put it out there.
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Radiohead did something similar. Put its last CD online and let people pay what they felt it was worth or just have it for free. People actually chipped in $5 here and there for the download too! Which is probably 500% more than they would make per CD when distributed “toll-access”. I paid $5 even though I knew I wasn’t going to listen to it much…