artisanal economics – part II

I a previous post I wrote a bit about a new-ish concept to me: artisanal economics. Call them “cottage industry,” “entrepreneurial projects,” “startups,” or “some guy selling his wares out of the trunk of his car…” – whatever the name there’s a great creative spirit in this idea.

Especially for artists. The closer we can get to our audience the better off we’ll all be. Or at least I think so.

It does create a challenge for those of us dealing with a digital medium. Musicians, of course, have live audiences with which to connect. But most of our work is enjoyed via recordings. And the possession of these is often seemed to be just another item on one’s iPod (or similar device).

I received an e-mail recently from a fan. I was extremely pleased to know my music was being enjoyed in a land so far from my home turf. However, I also found it interesting that he told me quite openly that he found my music because it was left on a used iPod he purchased. In a strict sense, my music should have been deleted from the device. But, at this point in my career, I’m far more interested in getting my music out in the world as far as I can. So, just this once I’ll let it slide. 😉

The point of this post is just to work out a few of my own feelings around this whole DRM issue. Who among can actually afford to actually enforce fair usage of our work? Even the majors have been unable to do it. So, why bother? Well, there’s that utopian ideal of musicians actually making a living from their art. That would be nice. Until then, I guess we’ll have to rely of alternative means of income to support our “musical habit.”