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Interesting topic.

I've changed my attitude on file sharing over the last few years. When it
first started happening, I was incensed. I've since become resigned, and
convinced that there is no point in fighting the tide.

I may antagonize people with this (but why should I start caring now? - 
already had a 2-hour head-butting exercise over this with the CFO of a 
record company, during which he mainly equated me with someone who walks
into Tower Records and stuffs CDs in his coat pockets), but I've downloaded
probably 4 gigs of MP3s using Morpheus. Yet, I quickly returned to the 
of buying CDs, and rarely listen to my downloaded files. Why did I 
and why did I return to CDs?

I downloaded because, just like Stephen said, I didn't want to pay for the
same freaking song a third or 4th time. 90% of what I downloaded I already
have on vinyl - I could have recorded the tunes and then used a deglitcher
to take out the pops, but that would have been extremely time-consuming. So
I perceive that I had a legal right to a digital copy of the tunes under
fair use. I just found an easier way of exercising that right.

Other tunes I've downloaded have sometimes resulted in CD purchases,
DOWNLOAD *ANYTHING*. If I had an Internet connection everywhere - in the
car, in the kitchen, etc. - I would never listen to anything but free
internet radio (btw, is there a looping station on Live365?).

Anyway, I have returned to mainly CDs because (1) the prices on Amazon have
finally become reasonable. When CDs were first coming out, there was some
justification for charging $16 for them, but that is *long* gone. I don't
have any trouble paying $12 for a CD, but $16 just drives me nuts. Go
figure. (2) I grew up in the age of "concept albums", so I still have a
charmingly na´ve belief that entire CDs have a coherency and present a
picture that individual songs do not. (3) CDs are just easy to take
everywhere and play.

In terms of the morality of file sharing, or music stealing, if you will: I
think of it in terms of the speed limit. Everyone flaunts the speed limit,
but no-one faults them on morality - even though the consequences can be 
more serious than denying a record company a profit opportunity.

In terms of the effect on the music industry: if the major record companies
go under, it will mostly make life better for me. I think music as whole 
benefit greatly from decentralization.

Warren Sirota