Sometimes progress comes from the strangest places. Bruce Houghton reports that Sony Music's new president may be getting strongly behind streaming, or at least behind the idea that consumer choice can be additive to an overall business.
...we’re very convinced that consumers ultimately want to experience music in different ways. Sometimes they want to own, other times they want to experience and listen. As a result of that consumer behavior, we are looking at growing the business overall.
Streaming, after all, is far different than file sharing – a topic that got Sony BMG so upset back in 2005 that it created and distributed a root kit in over 100 titles. Maybe it's time to give Sony a break on the root kit scandal and get behind an unlikely ally? Well, let's not go that far just yet. After all, even if Sony gets behind streaming, partners with and widely promotes Rdio, Spotify and others we'll still be in a tough situation. Streaming is great for consumers. Streaming, it seems, is good for distributors. What still stands to be seen is how good streaming is for artists and for indie music labels who, in many cases, have come to the opposite conclusion as Sony.
The only thing I'm 100% sure about is that this is progress. It's moving the ball forward in a way that we've not seen in the past decade. If more distributors will start singing Sony's tune we will finally be in a situation where young tech companies are free to innovate and when that's the case, I have every confidence that someone will crack the code and create a service that even artists can get behind.