MusicNet on Why It is

MusicNet on Why It is Better Than Napster-Like Services: MusicNet CEO Alan McGlade is the first to admit that while building an online music subscription service isn’t glamorous, it’s the best way to avoid getting sued like Napster. He’s won support of the big studios, sure; but now he’s got to try to win consumer support. McGlade draws analogy with the cable model and why consumers will ultimately be willing to pay for the online music services.

“And I always point back to my experience in the cable television business. I remember reporters writing, ‘Cable television as a business will totally fail because no one will ever pay for TV–it just won’t happen; it’s not realistic to think people will pay for TV because TV’s free.’ And in the early days, let’s face it, everybody pirated cable. I didn’t know anybody who actually paid for it. They all sort of snuck up poles at night and ran it into their house. And there wasn’t very sophisticated encryption, so it was relatively easy to do.
And over time, two things happened. First, the quality got better. It became more convenient. And at the same time, there were defensive measures, too. The encryption became more sophisticated. And now there are still probably pirates, but it’s really been marginalized. Most people when they move into a house will hook up cable and pay for it, right? “

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