The music industry has been slowly coming to terms with the fact that it cannot win the battle against piracy (or, as some may prefer to call it, free distribution). Faced with the current overabundance of musical content, another dramatically different scenario for music consumption might not be far away.
After the era of music as provider of escapism, after the era of music as provider of content (counter-cultural and otherwise), and after the era of music as the fabric of online networking, we could be witnessing the early days of “ethical listening” or “fair listening”. In this nascent era, the arm wrestle between the music industry and music sharing communities may simply dissolve, as music could be consumed according to the fairness in distribution revealed by the artist and/or label. The fact that one was authorised to freely share the musical product would then become the key factor in the actual appreciation of its content. Or maybe it´s already beyond all this, and we are simply getting uncompromisingly used to the idea that it is all out there for the taking.
A worthy question: why do you listen to what you listen to?