Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Licensed for life

As I wandered through my home I spied a stray cd copy of Julian Cope's Peggy Suicide - all alone on a kitchen shelf. I thought: "how many different formats must I own that body of work in?"
I bought it originally as a cassette because that best suited my car-borne life at that time. Later as a CD, later still as a download.
It's easy to assume that now I own it digitally I can do with it as I wish, that I could store it in some vast secure portal somewhere and repurpose as I wish ad infinitum.
Trouble is there are already higher spec digital versions available. And you just know that the quality will only improve - and rapidly.
So how many formats of a body of work are you meant to own in a lifetime? Perhaps this nagging concern - at least for anyone old enough to have a loft full of vinyl - holds us back from buying music and dvds like we once did.
Isn't it time we were able to buy a licence for access to whichever format we want, whenever it emerges, to do with as we wish? That, I might pay for.

The rate of change is so rapid it's difficult for one person to keep up to speed. Let's pool our thoughts, share our reactions and, who knows, even reach some shared conclusions worth arriving at?