Introduction to Popular Culture Studies

Courting Supporters For Independent Media

Posted by marylennoxhalf on April 17, 2017

Like others, today’s reading reminded me of the U2/iPhone extravaganza of 2014. It was almost like the world stopped spinning when iPhone users updated their phones and were greeted by a new album from U2. The reactions, which were intended to be much different, were heard all around the world. Everyone was confused and angry that they were forced to have this album on taking up space on their phones, even if it was free. I am sure the idea behind this, was so people could get free music and U2 would get promoted. This uproar that came after, was not expected from Apple.

This was an unfortunate example of free music for audiences, but there have been positive examples of this as well. I have seen many well known musicians provide their music for free, on sites such as soundcloud and even YouTube. This method seems to have very positive reactions from fans. I wonder what the difference is? People love free music, but are not happy when they are “forced” to have music that they probably are not interested in listening to.

As a faithful fan of Spotify, I enjoy listening to my music through playlists on the app. Although you do not have to pay to use the standard uses for Spotify, I love it so much I decided to splurge on paying for it monthly…. also meaning that the student discount made me okay with paying for it. Around this time, a big scandal was going on with Spotify and Taylor Swift. Taylor took her music off of the app, because she believed people should pay for her/and artists in general’s music. Although I understand where she is coming from, I think it is wrong that she took all of her music off of the app. Taylor thought that Spotify would harm music sales. This angered some, but I was not personally effected by it. It made me less likely to listen to her album, because I knew I was not going to purchase it on iTunes. However you see it, my opinion is that without having it on Spotify,  less people will listen to her music, rather than encouraging to buy the album.

These examples help me understand that all artists are different.  Some will give their music out for free, but on the other hand some are very against people listening to their music for free. Whichever way you think, it opens our eyes to the artists’ use of sites to publish music, and the audiences willingness to listen to it.


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