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How the Internet has Changed Music


There are many different theories on how the internet has changed music. We cannot deny that it hasn't. Ever since programs like Napster, Bear Share, Kazaa, and Bit torrent have been invented, people have been downloading music for free. Though the music industry and the government claim that downloading music and listening to it for free on the internet has a negative impact on the entire industry, consumers disagree.


One reason people download music off of the internet is because buying music has gotten super expensive. Just one CD can cost $20, which is more than most people can afford, especially teenagers and the younger generation who make up most of the audience. Also, paying $20 for a CD when you like just two or three of the songs on it seems to be a waste. Even though now there is Itunes and other such media outlets that will let you buy each individual song, that still comes out to $2 a song, which is more than most people can afford. The music industry calls downloading unfair however, as it takes many people to make an album, and they get paid off of royalties. 


Though consumers say that the impact internet made on music is a beneficial one. The biggest problem with music before is that a lot of it never got heard. Struggling bands couldn't afford to get their songs played on the radio or recorded onto a CD. The internet allows people to hear a variety of music, get to know a lot of local/indie bands, and enjoy music.


Another way how the internet has changed music was the effect that it had on people's tastes in music. The internet allows people to listen to many different genre's, international music and music previously unknown. Most people like a variety of music, not just one specific genre. Music artists have tuned in and now many of the biggest hits are compilation of different types of music. For example, Miley Cyrus' hit song, "Party in the USA," has an up-beat pop beat, a little Euro techno, Nashville guitar chords, and sings about rappers. 


The internet allows bands and musicians to reach their fans in new ways, making themselves personable and allowing bands to make up for lost money by selling merchandise. Most fans, even if they download their music, are pretty loyal and will buy merchandise, so there are plenty of opportunities for bands to make money.


How the internet has changed music in yet another way, is that it allows for the expansion of the art of music. Many bands are more and more aware of their fans, and many bands cater to niche groups of fans all over the world. These niche fans are incredibly loyal, will buy CDs as well as download music, and buy their t-shirts or other merchandise such as pins, patches, hats, tank tops, or jewelry. 

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