An argument against paying for digital music

Posted January 7th, 2009 by eric

My friend Robert over at The Daily Sabbatical has posted a self-proclaimed rant against paying for digital music. He makes some very good points:

“When you buy a CD, you have an asset that retains some value. You can sell it when you are hard up for cash or when you simply want different music. Not so with an mp3. To make the loss more tangible, think of the physical CD like a coupon that is worth anywhere between three and ten dollars, that can be used when you grow tired of the CD. So, buying the CD at Amazon gives you better quality, liner notes, and a coupon that is worth $10. The mp3 is by far the worse deal.”

I understand completely his perspective. Digital music has always seemed worthless to me. I don’t make it a habit to purchase it, but I don’t illegally download it anymore, either. I used to, but now I buy the vinyl, which 99% of the time comes with a code to download the mp3’s. It’s never seemed like a smart or fulfilling purchase to buy only the digital files, especially DRM-encoded ones.

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1 response so far ↓

  • 1 K // Jan 7, 2009 at 3:58 pm

    Confession: I’ve never actually bought any music from iTunes for this exact reason. I have, however, bought a fair bit from Amazon’s Mp3 store. My preferred method of acquisition is the physical copy from the artist themselves, as I know they are getting the bulk of the money I give them. At least I hope they are.