I Think Your App Should Be Free - hypebot

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Amingomusic

Interesting perspective; I would agree that piracy (read: thievery), in any form, is reserved for those who don't appreciate the time, energy, and expense that went into the craft, and don't respect those that are affected in result of their negligent decision.

With the pervasiveness of streaming services and endless (free) downloads, the user experience has become far more passive and diluted. Music, for most of us, is the backdrop to a dozen other things going on in the foreground. It's the soundtrack to our daily lives, but no longer is it the climax. For that, we, as consumers, have lost touch with those talented individuals who slave over their craft to bring us these sounds that fill our days. We no longer respect them because we no longer hear them.

The unfortunate reality is that, with the onslaught of digital media, there's no going back to the days where you walked out of a record store feeling good after spending $12 on a new album, because you would go home and sit in front of your speakers for the next hour intimately dissecting the skill and creativity that went into that composition. It's unlikely that we will ever be able to rewire those individuals out there that justify their wrongdoings—dismissing them because they somehow feel entitled, or simply don't possess the same moral code that the rest of us live our lives by—so, we must collectively find a way to move forward. Is this up to the artist? Absolutely not. This is a problem that the industry's reluctance to evolve has perpetuated; so, for that, it is the industry's responsibility to construct a sustainable platform in which the music industry ecosystem can once again thrive.

Having little hope that the establishment will ever create such a system, we, at Amingo, are doing our part to create a community that encourages connectivity between the individuals within the industry, as a means of empowering musicians with the resources needed to take back control of their careers—and their lives. If this ideology appeals to you, and you want to help propel this movement forward, we encourage you to head over to http://www.amingo.com to sign up, or http://blog.amingo.com to get to know more about us and our vision.

Matthias Galica

Allegory is a greatly underutilized literary device in blogging, and I am proud to call Joey Flores my friend and confidante.

GoonrGrrl

Well... It's the same old problem. Distribution. Make your app available in a timely fashion in an app store EVERYONE CAN ACCESS, and we'll be more than happy to buy it.

A lot of Android consumers out there are using devices which, for a variety of reasons, cannot access Google Market. If we can't access Google Market, and your app is not on Amazon Market, guess what? We CAN'T buy it, much though we would like to.

I've said it before: Distribution is not an end user problem.

Rob Falk

If an app has advertising in it, does the developer get paid when cracked apps run the ads? (I fully realize that many, many paid apps have no advertising.) Ethics and morality aside, (I'm a lawyer, after all) I'm wondering if the answer for developers is to create free apps with advertising?

Understanding that this article is an allegory, I point out one major failure in the analogy. Whereas the sale of recorded music is but one part of an artist's revenue stream, and that there is money in merchandise, live events and so on, the app (and ad revenue) is the developer's sole income.

In either case, as others have commented, it seems that the real solution is to adapt.

It's not about right or wrong. It's about "it is what it is." Stamp your feet and keep trying to stop piracy, which has never worked, or adapt, which according to Darwin and others, has always worked.

Frank Woodworth

First this is great. Joey Flores has done a very nice job.

What if you took it further and they develop a technology that lets you use a streaming version of all the apps ever created for a monthly fee, lets call this "appify" or "appsody" The per app payout is only fractions of a penny instead of the .99 cents you were used to but it is better than piracy right?

Guy Lewis

Bummer, Best stay on the apple apps store.

Anthony Nguyen

"Whereas the sale of recorded music is but one part of an artist's revenue stream, and that there is money in merchandise, live events and so on, the app (and ad revenue) is the developer's sole income."

Mike Ilitch is the owner of the Detroit Red Wings, Detroit Tigers, and Little Caesars Pizza, all very successful revenue streams. Is it fair to say that one should be able to sneak into hockey/baseball games simply because he'll make money selling pizzas? The availability of other revenue streams is not a justification to dry up one or two others. After all, you could provide other services, say, work at McDonald's or Starbucks, and do legal work for free.

Not all musicians play live shows. Not all songwriters play their own music. Indeed, one can and will adapt, but that's not the point. I think the point is to question whose choice is it to charge and distribute (and how) a product: the creator or the end user (or an internet Robin Hood)?

Anthony Nguyen

"Make your app available in a timely fashion in an app store EVERYONE CAN ACCESS, and we'll be more than happy to buy it."

I can't get Mac OSX on my Dell. I can't open .docx files on my old version of Word. I can't use my plethora of microUSB cables with my iPod. And I can't get awesome PC games on my Mac.

Propriety is a choice by companies and, at times, limited by technology. Distribution is not simply about making the product so "everyone can access" it - surely, it'd be smart and ideal to make a product available to all. Agreements need to be made, just like how you agreed to make yourself "accessible" at work for a certain wage and under certain conditions. Sometimes a deal is struck, sometimes not. It happens.

Yes, distribution is an end user problem because as an end user, you want the product. But it is not a problem an end user can (or ought to) do much about except voice their opinion. It is up to those who control the distribution avenues to listen to the end users and fix it, that is, if they want to listen and fix it.

I still can't use Mac stuff on my PC, but I'm sure Apple is okay with that.

Justice

At least it's not lonely at the bottom.

Amingomusic

Nicely stated, but let's not overlook the fact that, in most cases, after that $.99 funnels through all the "necessary" channels it ends up being pennies on the dollar as far as the artist is concerned. The solution, in my opinion, is lessening the reliance of those channels—many of which aren't necessary to keep on retainer. Give the control back to the creator and let them decide how to distribute *their* wealth, not the other way around. As a result, I stand by the notion that consumers would (and have proven to) be far more likely to purchase music once their attitude changes regarding what that money is supporting.

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