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Downloading/Pirating Music.

Discussion in 'Symphony X (Unofficial)' started by Ryu Kamigawa, Jan 6, 2006.

  1. Ryu Kamigawa

    Ryu Kamigawa Member

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    I, Personally cannot stand when people think downloading, song, after song is alright. It doesn't give the artist the feedback they deserve, considering they work their asses off for our entertainment.

    Well, its OK to download music if you want to know what an artist/band style is like before buying it (Exactly what i did with Symphony X).

    Are you find with it, or against it?

    Discuss.
     
  2. Anonymous

    Anonymous L'Étranger

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    I think it's cool. Downloading a song from an album is alright, I'm just not OK with the fact that some people download whole albums. I think MJR mentions something like that in a few interviews too. It's probably why there are a few songs up for download on the SX site. Whatever, the underground metal scene around here isn't very good so I try to find downloads to get into other bands. For example, Downloading Sea of Lies got me to buying every Sym X CD except Twilight, but thats cause I ordered it and the CD shop is being slow. I also got into Adagio that way. That pretty much sums up my opinion on downloads.
     
  3. Horus

    Horus and his imaginary friend

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    The only 2 things that I ever consider morally acceptable for "pirating" music are

    1. What Mr. Fast said about downloading 1 or 2 songs just to get the feel for a band's sound.
    2. Borrowing a friend's cd case, so you can put his cd's that you don't have on your computer.

    Those are the only 2 things that I do.
     
  4. kazahana

    kazahana ha ha!

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    (begin idealistic rant)

    I think the recording industry has it wrong. I don't see why people should buy an album they haven't heard and enjoy in its entirety. It seems this is the only area where you're expected to essentially gamble your money on whether an album is good or not. That said, if you do like an album you should feel compelled to purchase it for the good of the artist, and to a lesser extent the industry.

    The cut the record companies take from a CD is far too much which raises the price dramatically, and the majority of music put out is just bad and more centred on trends and selling an image rather than good music. It's little wonder then, that people turn to illegally acquiring music, since a lot of it isn't worth paying money for, and certainly not the high price demanded in order to keep the fat cats at the top swimming in their riches.

    Although the crap music argument applies mostly to mainstream music, since the most sales are for such music the prices set here will likely dictate the prices for CDs from other, perhaps more valid genres. The markup is still taken by the record company, so the artists - the people who actually make the music - don't benefit anywhere near as much as they should given the extortionate prices of CDs.

    Downloading music often helps a band get heard. Take Dragonforce, for example: arguably one of the most popular power metal acts of the last two years who started out with their music on mp3.com, or Circus Maximus who advertised their mp3s on this very forum and are now seen as one of the rising stars of progressive metal. I can cite any number of bands of whom I would not have heard (and importantly whose albums I have subsequently purchased) without downloading their music from filesharing networks.

    I would propose a system for downloading an album, along with an almost obligatory donation that goes straight to the artist less bandwidth cost. Most importantly, the money goes to the artist and not a record label, which would mean even at a hugely reduced cost per album, the artist would still probably get more than they do for a CD. A reduced price would mean people would be more inclined to pay for it. This certainly relies on social responsibility, but then the system does anyway given it doesn't take a genius to work out how to download an album. I suppose you have the ethical issue that filesharing is "wrong", whilst if a band puts an album up for download, it must be alright, but I don't think people's consciences work that way. If a band is trusting me enough to put an album up for download, then I would feel obliged to compensate them. Fans with more money could also give more to the band if they wanted. The only downside to this system, other than the potential for abuse, is that I like having CD cases, but I'd be prepared to let those go if a system like this worked.

    So basically, I don't have a problem with downloading music, nor do I see anything wrong with that as long as you either delete the music if you don't like it, or pay for the album if you do. That's just being responsible.
     
  5. Metaldrumz

    Metaldrumz Member

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    It all depends. Im a download whore. I also BUY everything I dpwnload I like with one exception. If its an out of print CD, and not in print. I have no problems d/l it and not searching ebay for a high collectors price.

    I agree though that way too many people abuse the file sharing way, and never support the artists.

    Not cool.
     
  6. snakeey11

    snakeey11 Tool of the Devil

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    Personally, I consider someone who is downloading vast amounts of mp3's/albums to be pirating. In general, I only download a couple songs from an album that I was already interested in buying. I listen; think "sweet, I can't wait to pick this up," and then once I have the actual CD the mp3 I downloaded is replaced with a rip straight from the CD.

    That said, I'm not going to lie and say I don't have any mp3's on my computer that I didn't legally purchase. By and large these are songs from artists that I only like one of their songs or whatever, and can't justify it to myself to buy the entire CD for 15 bucks when the one song I want is a click away. Is that wrong? Maybe so, but I buy and own enough CD's that I don't feel too bad about it. Furthermore, I can't count how many times I discovered a band through illegal downloads such as these. I can't guarantee that Symphony X would be one of my favorite bands if I hadn't decided (resulting from Amazon.com's related artists suggestions) to "illegally" downloaded Communion and the Oracle. I can't think of any bands that would be against downloading in this sense. Again, I don't condone pirating, but I DO think that some "illegal" downloading can help artists gain exposure. It's a fine line.

    At any rate, I'd much rather go see a band in concert and buy merchandise directly from them at the show. They get more money that way and more of it goes straight to them (or so I've been led to believe). Just my 0.02.
     
  7. snakeey11

    snakeey11 Tool of the Devil

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    Very insightful and I agree with everything you said. I definitely agree that some sort of standardized downloading system might be nice, but I also agree that owning the CD is part of why I purchased it in the first place. Call me old-fashioned, but I like to have something tangible as a result of spending my hard-earned cash.

    There are a lot of ways downloading music in the digital realm can be exploited for everyone's gain; iTunes and the such are a step in the right direction, but there is still plenty of work to be done.
     
  8. Beelzebub

    Beelzebub Member

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    If it weren't for Internet piracy I can say that I wouldn't be listening to the music I do today. Even though I download music, I do support the artists I listen to.
     
  9. OfSinsAndShred

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    This whole fiasco is only due to the fact that the technology lept ahead of the industry and its law by a few years. I don't see the point in getting worked up over the issue.
     
  10. Horus

    Horus and his imaginary friend

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    Snakeey made a good point about out of print cd's, but there's only one flaw with that. If it's an out of print cd, and the band isn't well known, how easy will it be to find it online?

    Here's an example. In America, Adagio is virtually unknown, except by the minority of Prog-Metal Heads in this hemisphere. I did a search for some songs off Dominate, just so I could hear what Guss sounds like, and what kind of atmosphere the songs had. Only like 3 songs came up in that search and they were all just 2 different files of Sanctus Ignis. and Inner Road. I did a bunch of searches and nothing came up.
     
  11. arglebargle

    arglebargle Member

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    There's a big difference between downloading a couple songs to see if you like the band, and having 500 full albums on your hard drive. I see no problem with the former... hell, I've found some of my favorite bands by that very method (Vanden Plas, for instance). I don't think the latter is acceptable, though.

    However, I DO think CD prices are way too high... if prices dropped by half, I'm sure people would buy twice as many. I don't see it happening any time soon, as the RIAA is a phenomenally greedy and shortsighted business entity.
     
  12. Tubbs

    Tubbs Bi-weekly top album:

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    Like many others, I think it's fine to DL like, 1 or 2 songs to get the feel of the album, but that's it. It's sort of disrespectful to the band to DL the entire album even if you plan on buying it, too. Nobody seems to realize that! If you like the band, don't be a DL whore and disgrace the real fans.
     
  13. Kronikle66

    Kronikle66 Everybody dies alone

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    I'm gonna be right upfront about this: most all of my albums I have are downloaded. 98% of the albums I own right now, I would have never heard on the radio, MTV, or anything of the like. Years ago, when I first saw a review of Symphony X's V album in a metal magazine, I thought "I've never heard of these guys... they must suck." Well, come several months later, my friend brought that name up again and sent me some of their songs (he downloaded the album too).

    I liked what I heard and ended up downloading "The Divine Wings of Tragedy" cd. I let my parents hear it. It was probably the first cd that we both could enjoy together (as opposed to showing them bands like Tool and Nirvana). Well, I really got into the band, so I started looking online and learning more about them. I saw several Dream Theater vs Symphony X threads and thought "hmm... another band that sounds like Symphony X? Let's give them a shot." I downloaded "Images and Words" from them and instantly loved it as well. From that, I went on a few downloading sprees, uncovering all the music I've been missing out on. With every band I discovered, more opened up (for example, Ayreon linked me outwards ten fold).

    As my love for prog expanded, I discovered bands I thought I'd like but didn't, Spiral Architect and Watchtower, to name a couple. Yet at the same time, the hybrids opened me up to new genres like Progressive Death Metal (Opeth), Progressive Rock (not metal. I'm talking Spock's Beard like), Power Metal (Angra, Kamelot), etc.

    My music tastes evolved, yet I never purchased any of their cds. However, just like prog music was passed down unto me, I passed it onto my friends, got several of them hooked, and eventually their tastes branched as mine did. As time passed, I became the proud owner of several Prog Metal t-shirts, posters, and even an autographed picture of all the Symphony X band members. I also have a couple Symphony X CDs that I loved enough to buy. One of them is a signed Odyssey CD I got at Gigantour, a concert which I would have never went to had I not downloaded all of Symphony X's and Dream Theater's albums. Up here in college, I met several other prog metal fans and we exchanged cds. My tastes expanded again. I even got a Rush t-shirt for Christmas.

    Now I'm a naturally cheap person. If I can get something for free, I get it for free. Spending money on something I might get sick of in a week or not even like in the first place, is not something I want to chance. At the same time, on my budget, it would be impossible to buy every album that I downloaded. Now yes, the artist does not get the recognition they deserve in cd sales if I download it for free, but at the same time, my horizons can expand at an infinite pace without it costing me a penny. Think about it, if I were to buy all the albums I could afford on my college budget, I'd maybe get into like 8 new bands a year, whereas now I can get into 100s. The more bands I fall in love with, the more friends I can show, thus the more my friends buy cds/merchandise or tell their friends.

    Here's a perfect example: My roomate buys albums, but the only music I EVER hear coming out of his speakers are Audio Slave, Sound Garden, Metallica, Rage Against the Machine, or Pantera. That's pretty much it. He's not into keyboards or symphonic stuff, but he loves semi-hard metal, so I thought I'd introduce him to Power Metal, via Iced Earth.

    Roomate: "Nah... I don't like Power Metal."
    Me: "Wha? Have you even heard it?"
    Roomate: "Yeah, Pantera has an album named Power Metal and I thought it sucked."
    Me: "Is that what you think all Power Metal is like? I've got several examples to prove otherwise."
    Roomate: "Nah it's okay. Thanks anyway."

    Come 2 weeks later, I'm blasting "Something Wicked This Way Comes" and he's like "Who the hell does this? This shit kicks ass!" He bought that album soon afterward.

    If I did not download cds, I wouldn't buy them either. I'd listen to the radio, then nothing would be accomplished. But the fact that I took it into my own hands to download the music has turned me into a fan. I've bought several peices of merchandise, attended a few concerts, converted several friends, and dear god, I even bought a couple cds because I was passionate enough about the band. It cost me nothing to become a fan and if anyone thinks that I'm stealing from the band or ripping them off, remember that I used to think because I never heard of a band that they sucked. So Symphony X did not lose any money from me downloading the album, if anything they gained money. They gained much more than money.

    Had I not downloaded all their albums, none of this would have happened. Symphony X along with a host of other artists would have fewer fans, a bit less sales, and not as much support.

    So that's my novel on piracy and Symphony X. I hope you enjoyed it :p
     
  14. †Russel Allen†®

    †Russel Allen†® The King of Terrors

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    I think of the same thing as Beelzebub. Living in a -- so called -- 3rd world country, I'd might say that music here is not as much as cheap it is on US, for example. So, for that matter, music (and I DO say good music, not crap) down here becomes not that much accessible. We have to appeal to "illegal" ways to have it, mostly. I do have broadband connection, I'm a privileged, so I have access to all the music I want. And when it worth the buying, slipping some paper to buy a good CD isn't all that sacrifice at all.
     
  15. turke

    turke Member

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    Don't you ever get bored of discussing the same thing over and over ?
     
  16. kazahana

    kazahana ha ha!

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    No, they didn't lose anything, but you gained something for free. What they gained from you may be negated by someone else with a similar attitude but no friends, or friends less inclined to like prog metal. To declare that it's alright for you not to buy CDs because you've boosted sales in other ways isn't for you to judge. The only valid business model is one where you give them money and they give you an album. I just think you should be allowed to hear the album first. I don't believe in something for nothing.
     
  17. Kronikle66

    Kronikle66 Everybody dies alone

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    How can it be negated? You're acting like if someone downloads an album, the band's balance goes down. Worst case scenario, that 'someone else' becomes a huge fan, but doesn't pay anything for the albums, doesn't attend any concerts, or doesn't buy any merchandise. I don't see how that negates what I've given to the band. If they share a similar attitude as I do and aren't going to buy a CD anyway, nothing is lost or gained (apart from increased fan base).


    If that's the case, then to declare that the only valid business model is one where you give them money and they give you an album isn't for you to judge.
     
  18. ThornsOfSorrow

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    I'm probably repeating what's already been said, but here's my view on it:

    Downloading music is an easy way for less popular bands to gain fans. If I hear of a band, I will usually try to download a song by them. If I like the song, I'll buy an album (or sometimes more than one); if I don't, I'll delete the song. I usually don't buy albums by bands that I've never heard, even if I really want to know what they sound like. Not all bands put sound clips on their websites, and not all bands are popular enough for others to be able to let you borrow an album of theirs to listen to. So there's really no other way to hear what they sound like other than downloading a song or two. I think that this is the only acceptable reason for people to download music.

    I always get pissed off at people who are happy just downloading everything and then burning whole albums and never actually paying for a CD. Luckily morals and my OCD (I need the artwork that's on the CD itself and the insert, or it bothers me tremendously) prevent me from doing this myself. I would never want to be like these people.
     
  19. kazahana

    kazahana ha ha!

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    I think of it more like revenue potential. Of course their balance doesn't go down, but they have lost out on a sale if someone downloads an album and doesn't buy it.

    But something is gained - you gain access to the music. That's what you pay for when you buy a CD. If you're not going to buy a CD then you don't get access to the music. If you don't pay, it's stealing.

    Conceded. I should have written instead:

    "To declare that it's alright for you not to buy CDs because you've boosted sales in other ways isn't for you to judge since the business model they have chosen is the one where you give them money and they give you an album".

    I adhere to this but make my protest by downloading albums first. If I like them I pay for them. If I don't, I delete them. I don't pretend that this is any more legal than your system, but it would be extremely presumptuous to say that you have a right to the album if you satisfy some criterion that you made up.
     
  20. Pedrowzky

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    I agree, even Frank Gambale proposed this too and I think he chose it as the very unique way he will continue selling music.
     

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