Thursday, January 19, 2012

Will you pay for something that is "FREE"?

The rise in popularity of mp3 players, Ipods, smart phones, and tablets during the past years paved the way for the decline of CD and cassette tape sales. It is very seldom now that you hear people say “That song was so good, I’m going to buy that artist’s CD!”. It’s always “I’ll just download it”. Unfortunately, I have not found any website where I can buy music. I tried using Itunes, however it was not available in the Philippines. So, naturally, I revert to downloading torrent files.

Just recently, I came across a news article featuring The website offers music downloads from both foreign and local artists. Each song costs 20 to 35 pesos. It seems that this is very much in line with the culture of Filipinos in buying which we call patingi-tingi. Also, when I visited their site, their offerings are up to date with the latest music from different genres. Personally, I will buy from this website since navigation is easy and it looks credible because it partners with the different recording labels such as Alpha Music, EMI, GMA Records and Sony Music to name a few.

These benefits, however, does not go without challenges. The question is, will this kind of service survive despite the fact that there is free music available in the internet? Will it capture the Filipino’s conscience and eventually get support? Also, the payment methods in buying the songs are through credit card or cellphone load. This may also be a challenge that the website may face since paying online through credit cards is not that popular yet in the country.

I may say that I can see a bright future for this company. But I think that this will only happen if its marketing campaign will be successful. Local artists, as well as foreign, if possible, should be one in endorsing and promoting downloading of music the legal way. The key here is not just by making it easy for the consumers to buy songs online but by targeting the conscience of the Filipinos. The music industry cannot sustain itself if no one will feed it. We feed it through paying.

Now, are we ready to pay for something that is "FREE"? Well, maybe we still need a little more time to answer this question.

Adrian Francis S. Bustos, Entry #5

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