Radiohead’s Latest Album and a New Business Model

Is it an innovative business model introduced by a big band, Radiohead or is it a development of mental state?
Radiohead announced on its website that its latest album, In Rainbows, would be released online without a record label. What the group wants to communicate to its audience? Do the band want the audience to consider more about value of artistic music? Or do it want to cut cost of recording, marketing or overheard costs? Or don’t it want to share fruit of its labour with external parties? There are many ways that we can think about.
As an IT sutdent, I see how technology impacts media industry, in this case, music industry. It cuts a middle-man out of an economical loop. But this could leave a room for a new player, an information technologist. The new loop will be formed of musicians, technologists, and audience. If the model is adopted, it will change an entire music industry to a new era.
My first reaction, I don’t really like this idea even though I see more opportunity for myself. Sometimes I don’t only pay for musicpiece but collectibles like albums, premiums, boxset, etc. If it’s only stream of digital information then we pay more attention to value of music work. We becomes less materialistic consumers and more pure music appreciators. Could it be a development of mental state? But for a person who takes a delight in classical music may not agree with my view.
After visiting the official website of Radiohead’s, they still sell tangible objects. You can order either discbox or download from the website. So we still need physical objects, a feeling of touching and possession. Not many of us solely listen to music and admire a talent of artists, we also pay for other stuff like a trend, album design, artist’s fashion, artist’s physical attraction. That’s how we do business with music in the past and we still do business with this. But the distribution channel may change in a near future. And also how we listen to music. We listen to it according to device we own, and services we pay for.

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