It appears that Radiohead's experiment of selling their music for whatever price people wanted to pay for it (including nothing) has come to an end. It's not entirely surprising as we reported that the band not exactly raking in the money on a per-sale basis, but there were still tons of people pirating out there. Yes, people were indeed essentially stealing something they could have legitimately downloaded for free. Even more surprising was that pirating the potentially free album may have been more popular that downloading it legitimately for free.
While we're not entirely sure how much money was made in all, it at least got them some headlines. Perhaps that was the plan all along?
Nicky Wire, a member of the Manic Street Preachers, a rock band whose hits include "Send Away The Tigers," told a news publication last week that Radiohead's offer "demeans music."
"Fair play to Radiohead for doing something different," Wire told the United Kingdom's Daily Star. "It's certainly great publicity, but I think it kind of demeans music. Music used to be a market; now it's all gone digital. It's worrying (that) cinema is doing well, video games are doing well, but music isn't. The free-download phenomenon is ruining the industry."
Such statements are heresy to the "free" culture, but Wire may be right to question whether Radiohead's experiment was a success.
If Radiohead was making a lot of money off the promotion, we have to wonder why they're going back to the old fashioned model?