The Wall Street Journal yesterday had an interesting piece [Sub. req'd] on the value of piracy to the music industry. No, not in Tim O'Reilly's classic 'Piracy is progressive taxation' sense, but rather in figuring out what people actually want to hear.
Earlier this year, Clear Channel Communications Inc.'s Premiere Radio Networks unit began marketing data on the most popular downloads from illegal file-sharing networks to help radio stations shape their playlists. The theory is that the songs attracting the most downloads online will also win the most listeners on the radio, helping stations sell more advertising. In turn, the service may even help the record labels, because radio airplay is still the biggest factor influencing record sales....… Read more