It’s no secret that the music industry has played hardball with users of filesharing networks. Leaders in the field worked hard to ignore the fact that those who swapped files via BitTorrent were also the greatest purchasers of music. Now it seems that Big Music may be crumbing just like the Berlin Wall, Big Tobacco and WMDs in Iraq. It seems Edgar Bronfman, head of Warner Music has signaled a change of heart:
“We used to fool ourselves,’ he said. “We used to think our content was perfect just exactly as it was. We expected our business would remain blissfully unaffected even as the world of interactivity, constant connection and file sharing was exploding. And of course we were wrong. How were we wrong? By standing still or moving at a glacial pace, we inadvertently went to war with consumers by denying them what they wanted and could otherwise find and as a result of course, consumers won.”
Although I work with many creative and innovative teachers, capital E Education doesn’t seem to get that the last couple years has witnessed a transformation: schools are now islands of impoverishment whereas homes, Starbucks and McDonald’s with their broadband WiFi access can be a better place for the motivated learner to get on with what they love. Because, although not everyone loves school, the joy of learning is universal.