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11 - The Political Economy of Streaming

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  30 August 2019

Nicholas Cook
Affiliation:
University of Cambridge
Monique M. Ingalls
Affiliation:
Baylor University, Texas
David Trippett
Affiliation:
University of Cambridge
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Summary

This chapter considers current and future economies of music production, distribution and consumption, intersecting the question concerning technology – big data storage, distributed network technology, programmable artificial intelligence – with the question concerning contemporary markets – the merchandising of desire, taste and sensibility within a surveillant attention economy, and its concomitant labour ethics. The first section tracks changes in the music industry within the digitally networked environment in the first decade of the twenty-first century. A practice of P2P sharing and free downloading shifted toward a full-scale surveillance economy hitched to licensed music, raising questions concerning data privacy, data security, management of user data, and procedures for third-party requests for data and metadata. By investigating the economic, social, technical and legal dimensions of this shifting terrain, the chapter suggests that the impact on cultural labour practices in the digital age bear uncanny resemblance to a pre-technological one.

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Chapter
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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2019

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References

Jehan, Tristan. 2005. ‘Creating Music by Listening’. PhD dissertation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Lerch, Alexander. 2012. An Introduction to Audio Content Analysis: Applications in Signal Processing and Music Informatics. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Loviglio, Jason and Hilmes, Michele, eds. 2013. Radio’s New Wave: Global South in the Digital Era. New York: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Morris, Jeremy Wade. 2015. Selling Digital Music, Formatting Culture. Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
Scholz, Trebor, ed. 2013. Digital Labor: The Internet as Playground and Factory. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
Seaver, Nick. 2018. ‘Captivating algorithms: Recommender systems as traps’. Journal of Material Culture. https://doi.org/10.1177/1359183518820366.CrossRef

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