I’m *Still* Confused [6:51 pm]
Katie Dean’s Music Services Score an A-Plus still doesn’t answer my question — how does losing money on every transaction mean that the problem is “solved?” Does someone expect that the government is going to *mandate* that colleges and universities adopt these services? And who’s going to set *those* prices?
More than 20 colleges and universities have adopted legal music download services in the past year, and the trend is continuing, according to a report released to Congress Tuesday by a joint committee of entertainment executives and university officials.
That’s good news for both the music industry and colleges that have suffered from rampant peer-to-peer file sharing of copyright content on campuses, both groups say. Music labels blame such illegal behavior for dismal CD sales, while schools have dealt with rising bandwidth costs and legal action against their students.
I think this particular bit is the worst:
Penn State is paying a discounted rate for the Napster streaming service. The school is using its yearly information technology fee to support the program.
Students can stream an unlimited number of songs for free and download songs that are “tethered” to their computer, meaning the songs stay on the computer as long as the person (or in this case, the school) subscribes to Napster. But if students want to burn music to a CD, they must pay the regular rate — a buck a song.
Later this year, students will be able to transfer the music to a portable device for an additional fee. Napster is offering this option in partnership with Microsoft.
Spanier acknowledged some students were skeptical of the music service initially, but not anymore.
“Those complaints have pretty much vanished,” he said. “I think if we tried to take it away at this point, there would be a rebellion.”
Napster has also been useful in some music classes, he said. Instead of sending students to the library to check out CDs, students can use the service for such course work.
He’s confident that more universities will follow with similar programs: “I think this will all mushroom.”
It’s a buried fee!! With, I am guessing, a significant number of payers who are not using the service. And I’d love to know whether this fee ends up being a part of the overhead at PSU.