Un-convention Blog

Butterflies Wings and Hurricanes
September 9, 2008, 2:20 pm
Filed under: Discussion

Two things happened recently that have prompted me to write this post.

First off I’ve been reading up on research into the effects of illegal downloading on CD sales (don’t ask me why, it gets me through the day). Some clever folk have even tried to quantify it; if only I’d known that QL,it = γ0 + γ1Pit + γ2Yit + γ3Nit + γ4Mt + γ5QC,it + εit, a few years ago, my I’d have done things different.

Of course people can’t agree on the outcome of such research; there are a lot of variables after all, and besides we all know that 65% of statistics are bullshit anyway. Stances usually align with vested interests; we’ve gone to war on that principal, so at least we can count ourselves lucky no blood has been shed (yet).

So it comes down to sampling and replacement effects, and variation across the demographic (I new that GCSE in Geography would pay off). Are people downloading to explore, and discover, risk free, and with wild abandon, or are they taking what they can get for nothing, stealing from hard working artists, and destroying civilisation as we know it.

Naturally I don’t have a definitive answer, although I know where my suspicions lie, however, it did get me to thinking as to how much simpler it all seemed when I was a lad.

This brings me to the second recent event…………..

Tidying up.

Not very rock ‘n’ roll, but it did lead me to a long lost treasure, up stairs in the back room, where no one goes – four boxes of cassettes. Big boxes too. And in there a snapshot of some of the best and worst music from the last two decades of the 20th Century (well at least until about ‘92 when I finally got a CD player). It was terribly exciting, and I’m going to tell you all about that in a minute, but first off it allowed me to do my own empirical study. Here I had an actual, verifiable, quantifiable sample of a pre Internet, music collection, from a genuine, non-criminally inclined, god fearing, music fan (i.e. me),

This is what’s in the boxes:

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