Destructive reign of digital music
Happy new year. Let’s start with a prediction:
2009 could be the year the compact disc finally dies. It could be the year lots of other things die as well — polar bears, the high street — but CDs will be the big one. Don’t believe me? Sales are estimated to have slumped 27% in the last quarter compared with 2007, a year in which they’d already nosedived, and anyone who sells them has gone or is going out of business. The writing is on the wall.
How are we to feel about this? If you ask me, absolutely delighted, because CDs have always been, well, a bit rubbish.
What with their instantly crackable spines, tiny little inlay cards and infuriating frequency responce! Bah!
Consider, if you will, what we have lost because of the CD. First, it pretty much killed off vinyl, but it also murdered tape. What is childhood without tape? No wonder your modern teenager spends all day stabbing and binge drinking: it’s because he’s not at home struggling to record pop songs off the chart show when Bruno Brookes isn’t speaking. And how are boys supposed to express their unrequited love for girls without the compilation tape (complete with handwritten inlay card)?
So good riddance to the CD. With any luck it will help all those ageing, hysterical Take That fans who rushed out to make ‘The Circus’ the fastest-selling CD of the millennium get over their addiction.
This brings us on to the future, and, even though it won’t include Take That, it is bleak. Things are going to get worse before they get better. The death of the CD has not been brought about by a nostalgic return to tapes and 78s. No, the thing that killed the CD is the iPod. And the iPod is worse than the CD. Yes, it’s very nicely designed and pocket-sized. But clicking down a list of virtual albums is not the same as rummaging through an actual shelf of albums.
And there’s iPod-associated anxiety, a dangerous condition caused by the sheer inability to choose which track you want to listen to from the eight billion available. And why is it that the moment I set fire to my irritatingly scratchy CD collection, I know that the iPod will break? Or the computer will have a fatal error? And I’ll lose my virtual music collection because, well, it was virtual. And I didn’t back it up
What do you prefare to look at ? This??
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