Aidin Vaziri from the San Francisco Chronicle thinks so. With the recent Sony BMG spyware scandal it looks like the nails in the compact disc's coffin may have been placed.
Digital music sales are quickly outpacing the sales of compact discs. See Apple iTunes in the top 10 record sellers list. Now there is a near infinite amount of free and legal music to be found online.
Vaziri points out plenty of alternatives to what he calls the "awkward polycarbonate plastic-coated disc."
His Top 10 list of alternatives includes:
1. Digital Music Services: I have extolled the virtues of my affiliate eMusic multiple times on this site. You simply cannot beat their free-trial offer giving away 50 free, non-restricted mp3s. A staggering amount of music can be found in their catalog now with the entire Naxos catalog, a must see for Classical afficionados. Besides iTunes, there are plenty of other choices. Check out: eMusic and Napster.
2. Online Radio: There are plenty of sites to choose from that offer free streams many with little or no commercials. Whether you are looking for Classical (which you probably are if you are reading this blog) or punk rock, you can find a station for you. Look at: BBC Radio and Live365.
3. MP3 Blogs: It seems that one of the new trends in the blogosphere is blogs that direct the reader to free music. Many of the blogs even have nice little reviews to help the prospective listener make use of the vast amount of free music available. Sites to explore: The Tofu Hut, Sixeyes, The Hype Machine among many others.
4. MySpace: He points out that the online community of MySpace is catching out with the music industry. There are hundreds of independent bands there looking for listeners. Even more mainstream bands are beginning to use the online portal to outreach to fans.
5. Satellite Radio: While you do have to pay for this one (I know, it is a bummer), the sheer variety to be found may make up for it. Sirius and XM are the ones to go with. Offering hundreds of channels of every interest, you are sure to find something you like. Great for listening to in the car when you are stuck on the road.
6. iTunes music store: While restricted, its ease of use and exclusive content seems to have helped it gain an advantage in the music download business.
7. Check out your local clubs: Depending where you live this may or may not be a good idea. If you live in a swinging city, maybe you have plenty of choices and are sure to hear the latest and greatest in da club.
8. BitTorrent: Illegal, but darn powerful. You can find anything to download with BitTorrent no matter how large or small the file size. I'm sure you will use your better judgement on what is legal and what isn't, ha!!
9. Amazon.com free downloads: Yet another new feature from Amazon to further improve your life, they are now offering hundreds of free downloads to entice you into buying something. With all the downloads they offer, maybe you won't need to buy anything!
10. Break out the LPs: Was there every anything better than the old days of Vinyl? Well many people don't think there was. Go to any garage sale and you are sure to find a goldmine of extremely cheap, great music. You know what they say: One person's trash, is another's treasure or something to that effect.
[From The San Francisco Chronicle]
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