Some record companies are considering releasing MP3s into the wild, according to a report flagged by Slashdot. They have to do something.
I wonder if they’ll follow the Harvey Danger model. The Seattle band gave away its last full album because it wanted more people to hear its music, and it expected people would still buy CDs.
Several record labels have since released EPs that include several of the songs previously released free.
But I don’t think we’re seeing the dawn of completely free music. It seems more like a tiered system is emerging where we’ll get more free MP3s, but they’re compressed and don’t sound as good as CDs. For the full quality versions, you’ll still have to buy a CD or download copy-protected songs.