I have to admit it, I listen to "illegal" streams of MP3s on the Internet. But, ya know what else? I purchase CDs as a direct result. I had never before listened to trance mixes until I discovered Groove Salad (now off the IP airwaves). It had been YEARS since I had listened to any Johnny Cash music, then I found a station streaming songs I had forgotten in my past. Friends of mine often had listened to Mickey Hart songs, I had never really noticed who the music was by, but one day went looking for songs like I had heard while visiting them; I found them being pumped out in all their rythmic glory on the Internet of course.
So, there are at least three groups of music that I have found via what the RIAA would have you believe are illegal means. The result? I have stack of CDs that I continue to buy as a result of my being exposed to Internet based music that I would have NEVER have heard via the so-called "legal" radio stations on my FM tuner. While I've continued purchasing CDs for quite a while, the list of CDs I've purchased BECAUSE of Internet based music is quite long. Here is a sample:
Chill Out Lounge - Volume 1
Various - The Matrix Soundrtrack
Paul Oakenfold - Swordfish - The Album
Orbital - The Altogether
Johnny Cash - Super Hits
Bela Fleck - Tales From the Acoustic Planet
Bela Fleck & The Flecktones - Live at the Quick
Blue Man Group - Audio
Mickey Hart - Planet Drum
All of those purchased over the last few months, direct result of Internet based music. There are other CDs I've purchased as well, probably another 10+ that while were not a direct result of listening to the music on the Internet, I certainly could have obtained all of the music for free from the Internet had I wanted to, but I didn't.
As far as I am concerned the RIAA is simply a group of money hungry individuals using art as a means to their own personal gain, The RIAA in no way is for the gain of the artist who deserve compensation for their wonderful entertainment that they give us. While I'm sure the RIAA will win, I would give nothing more to see the RIAA disbanded and let the fair market find its level.
Of course, I am realist as well and know that probably won't be able to happen. I simply look at my friends who don't bother paying for others art and instead steal it, whether that be music or games. Though in my friends cases it is because they refuse to move out of North Carolina and get real jobs that actually pay a person enough money to make a living. I can see that attachment to "home", but not wanting to get out and find a niche that you'll be well compensated for is a different story!
Since I work for AOLTW and have three different music companies as part of the corp (Warner Brothers Records, Warner Music Group, and Warner Music International) I feel I must state the views and opinions expressed here in no way reflect those of AOLTW... obviously.