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Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Philip Hamm, Jan 2, 2002.
Philip the story was brought up in the following thread
comments: don't count on it
Philip, I've seen this story discussed here and on Audio Asylum. While I obviously hope this come to fruition, I am not holding my breath. I am counting on seeing CDs at the mall for $18.99 and $15.99 when on sale for a long time to come.
Well, if a product isn't selling, what do you do? You reduce the price. A basic rule of economics. I believe the music industry IS getting hit hard. A lot less people are buying CD's these days. And the main marketing target of the record companies are, what, teenagers? (with the likes of N'Sync, Britney, Backstreet Boys, and the many sound-alike rappers out there). Problem is it is the teenagers/college kids (more than any other group and the very group they are targeting) that have the CD Burners and are downloading stuff off the internet for free like crazy and not buying the record company's product. Yeah, I believe the music industry has some serious problems it needs to address. And a reduction in the price of it's product is chief among them.
Brian, I do agree wholeheartedly with you, but I still don't see it happening. Perhaps this is because I feel there is no way we will get what we want. Call me defeatist. We all have been waiting for CD prices to drop for years, yet they haven't. I am incensed every time I see CDs for $18.99 at mall stores. As I said, a sale at these stores means a popular CD is $15.99. Best Buy and Circuit City are cheaper, but not cheap enough most of the time in my opinion. All I know is that if the prices of single CDs drops to $10 or less, I will be buying many more CDs.
I say that the record companies are getting hit hard...well, let me rephrase that. They are still making plenty of money, but not to the levels that they have been accustomed to over the years. CD prices have been held artificially high ever since the formats inception, but as consumers of music we had little choice but to pay the price they were asking. Until now. Much of their product is available for free on the internet, so it obviously is digging into their profits. And as more and more people buy CD burners and figure out how to tap into the wealth of free music available on the internet, the record companies will keep seeing their profits dwindling for the foreseeable future. They will still make significant profits but not to the degree they would like. So, they are caught in a conundrum: (1)hold the line with CD prices and hope that they don't lose too many more consumers to alternative ways of getting their product or (2)reduce the price of their product and hope that many of those that have significantly reduced their CD buying in recent years (because they can get the product elsewhere for free or they simply refuse to pay the high prices) will come back to buying their product at a reduced price in significant enough numbers to offset that reduction in the price of their product.
Like I said earlier, the main marketing target of the major record companies are the very group that are "burning" them (pardon the pun) by getting their product free on the internet. They know that they lose many consumers as they get a bit older and get married and have children, and buy significantly less of their product because their priorities are different. So they do rely heavily on the teenage/college age consumers as their main source of profits. And this is the very group that is burning them (again, sorry). It is an intersting predicament they find themselves in. And I look forward to seeing how it all plays out.
What will they do? I would bet that we WILL see some reduction in CD prices in the near future. I don't think they have much choice.
It will be very interesting to follow this in the coming year.
"It is an intersting predicament they find themselves in."
Brian, They shot themselves in the foot, and unfortunately, they deserve every bit of pain they can get!
To me, there is no way out other than maintaining the status quo, despite all of their hype about lowering prices.
It was just a holiday comeon by a few retail outlets. If anything, the RIAA is "running it up the flagpole", to see if anyone is naive enough to bite, that prices are actually going to be lower. They just want consumer confidence to build up in this flagging, sagging marketplace, and get people into the stores and generating that "clicking" online. How many of us walk out of any music outlet with nothing...not many, I'm sure.
Appearances are decieving, and that's the only that matters here...the appearance that these ever merging and consolidating Music Companies, are not acting in concert to regulate pricing, and that there is some kind of free and open marketplace here. We all know it's a fake, phone and Fraud, because we are hardcore consumers! It's the tourists that are getting excited.
If they were sincere, you would see across the board cuts, instituted, way outside of the holiday season shopping. They were merely trying to save this miserable sales year...and it flopped...BIG TIME! 9-11 didn't help, because most retail outlets had already pre-ordered inventory for Christmas.
No doubt the Music Industry is in trouble, but they are so busy instituting copyright safeguards, and chasing and staying one step ahead of bootleggers and pirates, they forgot that they have to offer consumers a Product to sell and that sells. One good thing about Capitalism, is that the laws of supply and demand, etc., shakes out the Losers from the Winners...it's survival of the fittest, in it's rawest form.
How much would the recording industry have to lower prices to put a dent in piracy? A $10 disc would certainly sell more copies than the same title at $18 but someone with access to a modem and a $0.50 cdr isn't likley to buy very many CDs.
I would love for this to come to pass, as my CD collection would grow a lot faster than it is now. I just started buying CD's about 2 weeks ago. It was a big step for me. My ideas changed, and I now feel the need to support the artists I like. Do I still download MP3's...yes. But, I do only download a song or two of a potential album purchase, to get a feel of what to expect. If it's something I think I'll enjoy, I go buy the disc. Of course, I rip my CD's (all 11 so far) into VBR 224-320kbps mp3's, but I have made it my policy not to make them available for download. I'm working on a digital jukebox. If CD's were to hit $10, I'd be extremely happy.