The Future of Music: Where is the Money? (4/16/15): Working Topic Outline and Resource List

Preliminary 2/11/15 )   We invite registered Think Tank attendees to share the topics they’d like to see addressed during the interactive session. Here’s a working list of possible topic areas for the Future of Music (Thursday, April 16, 2015), reflecting input from our lead participants and registered attendees.  The main event page and signup form are at Feel free to add a comment with your own topics and themes or highlight the ones you find particularly compelling. (You can also email to with the subject “Think Tank Topics.)

The Future of Music:  Where is the Money???

Key Issues and Challenges:

  • Disappearing recording revenues — Napsterization, piracy
  • Pay for art??? – cultural attitudes – sources/levels of artist income – impact on sustainable artist careers
  • Power shift from labels to iTunes …to Spotify?
  • Subscription services / licensing fairness
  • Direct to fans / Low barriers to entry – Freedom vs. “the tyranny of too much consumer choice”

Promising Solutions

  • New modes of consumption and distribution — rent vs. own — “The Celestial Jukebox”
  • New monetization models – subscription, freemium, pay what you want, crowdfunding, etc.
  • Powerful data and analytics to optimize decisions, improve services and drive discovery and consumption
  • Pricing differentials? Owned / programmed / listener-selected?  New / pop / long-tail?
  • New modes of creation, programming and experience — and blurring boundaries
  • New social collaborations in creation and listening
  • Disintermediation? Re-intermediation?  Power to the artist? New kinds of support and distribution services? (Label vs. Publisher vs. Creative Agency vs. Dev company?)
  • Comprehensive music licensing reform and “the next great Copyright Act”
  • Changing balance of recorded (vs. merch)?
  • New consumer technology — mobile, wireless homes, discovery and programming
  • New creation and recording technology
  • Quality and compression — From Hi-Fi to MP3 to Hi Def?

Change Resistance

  • Intermediaries — Labels, Distributors, Venues, Rights Organizations (PROs/MROs/GMROs)
  • Rights — equity and law (and MROs)
  • Infrastructure and technology


Links to relevant items by our participants (latest additions first):*

Bill Rosenblatt

Richard Reisman

Links to other background of interest (latest additions first):


*We invite all participants to submit relevant resources to be listed here.  (These should be thought-leading or opinion pieces, not marketing for an individual or firm.)


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